A short jumble for you this morning:
• Sorry, more Stuie for you. Praise just being lavished on the former Houston Dynamo. Comments here from Owen Coyles.
And yet another quote–along with about 50 other positive ones–from the Bolton boards, this one goes like this, “Holden looks a quality player, he is going to be our David Beckham, our dead ball specialist.”
Thanks to the TSG contributors who pointed these out.
Well done, Iceman.
• A little USMNT humor here. Heath Pearce ribbing on DaMarcus Beasley. Too funny not to put up here. I thought they were supposed to be on lockdown training over there.
• Official announcement coming Tuesday: Guus Hiddink to coach the Ivory Coast in the World Cup. About the only thing holding the Ivory Coast back was securing a head coach who coaxed the egos on the team (Toure, Drobga, etc) to play together in the spirit of one goal. Quite a coup here….no pun intended.
• Tuesday kicks off “Friendly Week” here at TSG and across the globe. A name bantered around in our community, Shay Given, takes the pitch for Ireland today as they welcome the Brazilians to Croke Park in Dublin. Given better bundle up as Ireland are without first-choice back liners Richard Dunne and John O’Shea.
Other gems from this game:
» Did you see Maicon’s goal against Udinese this past week? No? Well check it out below. The video may not have the most clarity, but we can confirm that the man you see there is in fact a fullback.
» With Luis Fabiano shelved, Nilmar of Villareal should get the call. Keep an eye on the striker who’s rippled the net eight times in 19 games this season for the La Liga side.
»Robbie Keane is back in for the home side after having been sidelined with a knee injury.
• Minus one, plus one. News that Tottenham tyke winger Aaron Lennon faces six more weeks in hopes of healing his injured groin. Meanwhile, Fabio Capello getting desperate? Oft-injured Ledley King–perhaps the finest center back when he’s not carrying a red cross–set to join the national team?
• How about a forgotten American abroad, 24-year-old Jemal Johnson who was loaned to League One side Stockport County from MK Dons in the January window.
Johnson has been rounding into form with more playing time, banging in a 25 yard strike over the weekend.
Stockport travels to Bristol to roll the Rovers Tuesday.
• Oh, and did you miss Lionel Messi’s late goal against Malaga on Sunday? We almost did…but now you won’t. As Martin says in the comments below, a model of teamwork: Xavi-to-Alves-to-Messi.
• Reprint: We called Eljero Elia out on Sunday in a piece. Frankly, the Dutch winger is not getting enough press beyond our publication before tomorrow, so we’re going with a redux here.
Ankle-breaker Eljero Elia, who may start up top for the Dutchmen.