Photo by Nick Turchiaro/ISIphotos.com
By AVI CREDITOR
Omar Cummings won't be joining Aston Villa after all.
Cummings' attempt to secure a United Kingdom work permit was denied, meaning that the Colorado Rapids striker won't be going to Aston Villa on loan as had been speculated for some time. Cummings just wrapped up a training stint with the Premier League team, one that was supposed to carry over into a loan until the start of the Major League Soccer season.
The main culprit for the permit denial is Cummings' national team, Jamaica. One of The Football Association's conditions to automatically secure a work permit is that a player's national team has to have an average ranking of 70th in the world over a two-year span leading up to the permit application. Jamaica's average ranking over the last two years is 72nd.
Aston Villa could appeal the decision, but considering how long that could take and that there are only two months remaining until the start of the MLS season, it likely wouldn't be worth doing.
Here are a few more stories from around the soccer world:
JONES LOAN FINALIZED
United States national team midfielder Jermaine Jones is officially on loan with Blackburn after the necessary paperwork was completed.
Jones, who fell out of favor with coach Felix Magath at Schalke 04, will be at Blackburn through the remainder of the Premier League season. He could be in the lineup as soon as Sunday, when Blackburn hosts West Brom at Ewood Park. That match will be televised live on Fox Soccer Channel at 11 a.m. (ET).
PIENAAR JOINS TOTTENHAM
South African international and former Everton midfielder Steven Pienaar has joined Tottenham on a £2.5 million transfer fee.
Everton received offers from Chelsea and Tottenham for Pienaar, who opted to join Spurs rather than head to Stamford Bridge. The 28-year-old Pienaar, whose contract with Everton was up at the end of the season, will reportedly sign a four-year deal with his new club and compete for a place in a midfield that already contains the likes of Gareth Bale, Aaron Lennon and Luka Modric.
ASIAN CUP QUARTERFINALS TAKING SHAPE
Australia and South Korea both advanced to the quarterfinals of the Asian Cup in Qatar, with their respective victories over Bahrain and India on Tuesday clinching their spots.
Only one spot remains among the final eight teams, as Uzbekistan, Qatar, Japan, Jordan and Iran have also clinched places in the quarterfinals. The final team to advance will be either Iraq, North Korea or the United Arab Emirates, and that will be decided on Wednesday.
The New York Red Bulls replaced assistant coach Goran Aral with Jan Halvor Halvorsen.
Disappointed Cummings won't get to play for Aston Villa? Think Blackburn is a good fit for Jones? Do you see Pienaar fitting in at Tottenham? Who do you think will win the Asian Cup? Do you like the moves for New England and New York?
Share your thoughts below.