Manchester Airport wants to fly Nemanja Vidic

Manchester Airport flys Nemanja Vidic
Manchester Airport wants to fly Nemanja Vidic

A very clever tweet by Manchester Airport related to news that Nemanja Vidic will be leaving Manchester United and England this summer.

Beckham going back to England?

Beckham doing what he does best - free kicks
Beckham doing what he does best - free kicks

Beckham going back to England? According to Tony Fernandes, the owner of Queens Park Rangers, that is certainly a possibility. At least that’s what he hinted on his twitter account. How realistic is this move considering Beck’s LA Galaxy contract and his age, remains to be seen.

On the other hand, I believe that he is one of the fittest athletes in the world and that he could play in the starting eleven for at least half of the English Premier League (EPL) clubs. At this point in his career I doubt that money is the driving force and can’t imagine him “wasting” the last couple of years of potentially great performances in Major League Soccer (MLS).

10 highest football transfers of the 2011 summer

Football transfer money
Summer transfer window is closed, lots of money was spent and here’s who was paid the most.

1. Sergio Agüero (Atletico Madrid – Manchester City) €45 million
2. Javier Pastore (Palermo – Paris Saint Germain) €43 million
3. Radamel Falcao (Porto – Atletico Madrid) €40 million
4. Fábio Coentrão (Benfica – Real Madrid) €30 million
5. Cesc Fàbregas (Arsenal – Barcelona) €29 million
6. Samir Nasri (Arsenal – Manchester City) €27.5 million
7. Juan Mata (Valencia – Chelsea) €26.7 million
8. Samuel Eto’o (Inter Milan – Anzhi Makhachkala) €26 million
9. Alexis Sánchez (Udinese – Barcelona) €26 million
10. Stewart Downing (Aston Villa – Liverpool) €22.8 million

Money well spent?

Offense sells tickets, defense wins championships

Per Mertesacker6‘ 6″ German international Per Mertesacker will continue his career in Arsenal. He arrived in London earlier today for medical exams and is expected to sign by Thursday and make his debut as early as September 10th against Swansea City.
Werder Bremen is expected to get £10,000,000 while Mertesacker’s annual salary should be £4,700,000. Arsène Wenger is also bringing a Brazilian left-back André Santos for a reported £6,000,000 from Fenerbahce.

Arsenal needs new players, mainly no-nonsense defenders considering they got creamed 8:2 by Manchester United and that’s clearly what Wenger has in mind as well. Oh and since ticket sales actually do matter, they also signed Chu Young Park.

Samir Nasri signs for Manchester City

Samir Nasri
Samir Nasri

Samir Nasri signs for Manchester City for a reported £22,000,000 transfer fee. Nasri was recently offered a £90,000 per week contract to stay at Arsenal which he turned down, so it’s expected that he’s salary will nearly double at Manchester City.

Considering he joined Arsenal in 2008 for £15,800,000 from the financial standpoint it looks like Arsène Wenger profited and made a good decision. On the other hand, having lost both of his main midfielders, Fabregas and now Nasri could Arsenal really afford not to spend? In tough economic times (for most at least) not spending money on lavish and newsworthy transfers has been his M.O., but could he continue to do and still expect to win the ever elusive title? I don’t think so. As a matter of fact, watching them lose to Liverpool at home three days ago made me believe that it is time for Wenger to leave. He’s been at Arsenal for 15 years now and while he probably believes he could, not everybody can deliver like Sir Alex Ferguson and leave a winning legacy (Ferguson joined Manchester United when they had 7 titles, last season they won their 19th!). If Arsenal (read: Arsène Wenger) doesn’t bring in at least one great player at each of the lines (defense, midfield, attack) they have nothing to look forward to this season.

I know it’s still too early to make predictions, but Manchester United looks sharp and ready; Manchester City is not too far behind (even though they will need to sell some players soon); Liverpool hasn’t been impressive but even so they beat Arsenal 0:2; Bolton Wanderers’ have been a real breath of fresh air so far and the list goes on. In short, unless they invest Arsenal will not finish this season in the top third come May of 2012. Mark my words!

Diego Forlan signs for Inter Milan

Against...and now he will play for Inter
Against...and now he will play for Inter

Fresh of the presses! Diego Forlan signs for Inter Milan. He’s an amazing player and a welcome fresh addition to Inter’s stale side. Also, this move further supports that Eto’o is on his way to Anzhi Makhachkala (highest bidder).

On the other side, Atletico Madrid lost both Forlan and Aguero…ooops! Don’t expect that team to do much this season – sorry Atletic fans.

I wonder who’s the next big transfer?

Emmanuel Adebayor on loan to Tottenham

Adebayor from his happier Arsenal days
Adebayor from his happier Arsenal days

It’s tough to find your place in starting 11 of Manchester City these days. This becomes even more difficult for a forward whose direct competitors are likes of Tevez, Džeko, Aguero and Balotelli which is why Emmanuel Adebayor will not be returning from his loan to Real Madrid.

He’s actually expected to join Tottenham this week on another loan and make his debut against Manchester United on Monday night. I’ve mentioned Robbie Keane leaving to LA Galaxy which is probably why Harry Redknapp decided to strengthen his attack with Adebayor.

Rumors on the deal are that Man City will pay half of the £170,000 per week wages for the duration of the loan, with Spurs having the option of buying Adebayor for £12 million at the end of the season. Tottenham will also pay a loan fee to Man City which is believed to be at least £2 million.

Now, let me take a minute to share my impressions of Adebayor who is undoubtedly a player for some of the top clubs. He played well in Arsenal, but left it for money and hopes that he will become a part of this “dream team” sponsored by the new Manchester City owners which quickly proved not to be the case. He didn’t provide enough value when compared to his other attacking colleagues so he was sent to Real Madrid. There he didn’t “obey” José Mourinho‘s TEAM/RESULT FIRST mentality and is now let go to join another team, most likely Tottenam.

He’s been searching for his rightful place on a team ever since he left Arsenal and I think that this it’s time to seize this opportunity and prove that he’s not just a big, physical guy upfront, but that he can actually contribute to his new team, score goals and provide assists. Let’s hope he has a great season, as I believe that he truly deserves it.

On the other hand, this move could spark another transfer, that of Peter Crouch to Stoke City, but it’s way too early to even speculate on that just yet. Other transfers in and out of Spurs are also quite possible which could include Defoe and Pavyluchenko on one side with Odemwingie, Rossi and Falcao on the other.

Things are heating up in European leagues and this will certainly be another great year for football.

Eto’o voyage from Spain to Italy to Russia

Eto'o smiling all the way to the bank
Eto'o smiling all the way to the bank

Inter Milan striker Samuel Eto’o is reportedly on the verge of signing for a Russian team, Anzhi Makhachkala (say that 5 times fast).

There are two versions of the upcoming medical exam. According to first, it is supposed to take place tomorrow in Rome. The other one says that Eto’o will go through medical on Thursday in Russia. Either way, it’s almost certain that he’s leaving Inter and when someone offers (a rumored) little under $500,000 per week who could say no. Yes, you have read that correctly my friends, $2,000,000 per month – would you say no to that payday? I didn’t think so.

After all, football at the highest level is business, it’s all about ROI, money and revenue. Samuel Eto’o played for Real Madrid, Barcelona, Inter (and a few smaller clubs); won the Champions League and really doesn’t have much left to prove to anyone. Furthermore, he’s in his 30’s and this is his last opportunity to really cash in, so I wish him good luck.

He’s an entertaining player to watch, dynamic, and I’m sure that he will do well in the ever improving Russian Premier League. I completely understand his decision and as a friend of mine likes to say, “you really can’t knock his hustle.” 🙂

Barcelona: Fabregas is back and here to stay

Another transfer (two years in the making) is finally complete.
Cesc Fàbregas signed a 5 year deal with Barcelona, club he left for Arsenal back in 2003. His new “sale” price to leave Barcelona again is set at €200 million – I guess he’s not going anywhere before summer of 2016. By the way, some 30,000 fans attended his signing. Insane!

Fabregas then
Fabregas then

Somehow I don’t think he’s worth all this money and I expect him to have difficulties proving he deserves the spot in Barcelona’s starting 11. That’s just me, time will tell if he is worth the investment. In any event, it adds more excitement to the world of football.

Fabregas now
Fabregas now

Major League Soccer – Tottenham’s Robbie Keane to join LA Galaxy

Keane for IrelandTottenham’s and Ireland’s national team striker Robbie Keane will continue his career in LA Galaxy. He signed a two year deal worth £6 million while Tottenham received £3 million for this transfer. 31 year old forward had several offers from British clubs and Scottish Celtic, but decided to cross the Atlantic and strengthen the team alongside David Beckham and Landon Donovan. Good luck to him!