Wednesday Kickoff: Del Piero signs with Sydney FC, Carroll injured and more

DelPiero (Getty Images)

Juventus legend Alessandro Del Piero is continuing his career in Australia.

The 37-year-old Italian became the highest-paid signing in A-League history Wednesday, completing a deal with Sydney FC that will pay him $4 million for the next two seasons. Reports of Del Piero's signing with Sydney made the rounds late last week, but Premier League sides Liverpool and Southampton and both expressed late interest in signing him, making for a less certain race for his signature.

Del Piero, a free agent after 19 seasons with Juventus, had previously indicated an interest in MLS. Montreal Impact president Joey Saputo said a few months ago that he had talks with Del Piero's representatives but that the player was eyeing New York or Los Angeles as a potential destination.

Here are a few more stories to get your day going:

CARROLL OUT WITH HAMSTRING INJURY

West Ham and England striker Andy Carroll will miss up to the next six weeks with a hamstring injury, one that he suffered on his debut with the club against Fulham after being sent on loan by Liverpool. According to the BBC, Carroll is expected to miss four league matches and a Capital One Cup match.

Not only will Carroll miss time for West Ham, but the injury rules him out for England's World Cup qualifiers against Moldova and Ukraine during the upcoming fixture dates. With Wayne Rooney also out while he recovers from the gash on his right leg, England's forward options for the matches are Jermain Defoe, Danny Welbeck and Daniel Sturridge. 

FULHAM PRESS ON WITH LIVERPOOL-DEMPSEY COMPLAINT

Fulham's saga with Clint Dempsey is over, as the U.S. star has moved on to Tottenham, but the club isn't letting one of the summer's most premature reports go unpunished.

The club is reportedly continuing to pursue its complaint against Liverpool for a report of Dempsey's signing with the Reds that ran on ownership company Fenway Sports Group's website. The BBC reports that it was thought that Fulham would drop the complaint after Dempsey's transfer to Spurs went through, but that will not be the case.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers went on to claim that the club had inquired about Dempsey in the aftermath of the report fiasco, but up to that point no concrete offers had been made, based on comments made by Fulham manager Martin Jol.

BALOTELLI HAS EYE SURGERY

Mercurial Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli underwent laser-eye surgery, and is expected to be out for the next 10 days.

Balotelli had the surgery after issues with his contact lenses reportedly led to a bout with conjunctivitis, and as a result he is a doubt for City's next match against Geoff Cameron, Maurice Edu and Stoke City on Sept. 15. He will miss Italy's World Cup qualifiers against Bulgaria and Malta.

Balotelli has not scored in either of his two matches for City this season a season after scoring 17 goals in all competitions.

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What do you think of Del Piero signing in Australia? Do you wish he had come to MLS? Do you see England having a problem scoring against Moldova or Ukraine without Carroll and Rooney? What's your take on the Fulham-Liverpool conflict? Hope to see Cameron and Edu go up against Balotelli after the international break?

Share your thoughts below.

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12 Responses to Wednesday Kickoff: Del Piero signs with Sydney FC, Carroll injured and more

  1. biff says:

    Honestly, Fulham now seems to be doing everything possible to look as foolish and vindictive as possible after Clint snubbed Fulham’s offer of a contract extension in order to move to a better club. Clint already had signaled earlier this year he wanted to leave Fulham and Liverpool had absolutely nothing to do with that decision.

  2. Shane says:

    Al Fayed loves to sue and file complaints. It’s kind of a hobby.

  3. Rlw2020 says:

    Idk liverpool made a huge mess without taking anyone’s business seriously. They basically told dempsey and the media that they had signed him without making a real offer. This created the whole fall out with jol and clint as noone knew the truth about the situation. You always hear players and managers defering to discuss matters of another team until the deal is finalized, this is why! Its either incompetence, disrespect or both but Fulham have point.

  4. Shane says:

    I hope Liverpool get a huge fine, and Suarez gets suspended for 8 games.

  5. Mig22 says:

    Interesting Daily Mail story/rumor about Balotelli being a cigarette smoker and that contributed to his eye problems. Seems silly but it makes for great press.

  6. Nate Dollars says:

    haaaaaaa +1

  7. Gnarls says:

    Michael Jackson was legendary at the ’82 World Cup. It was a real Thriller.

    See what I did there?

  8. Rory says:

    I hope Kenny Dalglish gets fired from his position of lord and savior of Liverpool over this.

  9. SydneySounder says:

    I am so excited about Del Piero. A-League quality isn’t great (hopefully yet), but now I really do need to go to more of Sydney FC’s matches, I don’t care how old he is, the guy is still quality.

  10. Seriously? says:

    Al Fayed has done some strange and embarrassing things for years, like refusing to honor Jean Tigana’s contract after firing him way back when, but I’m this case he may have a point. Team owners publicly saying they’d signed a player whom they hadn’t, and who was under contract with another club seems like the definition of tampering.

  11. Seriously? says:

    … but IN this case he may have a point… (stupid auto correct)