Wednesday Kickoff: Sneijder nearing move to Galatasaray, Walcott close to signing, and more

BY DAN KARELL

Wesley Sneijder’s transfer saga has now seemingly taken a turn toward Europe’s eastern front.

Turkish club Galatasaray S.K. have announced via their club website that they have begun negotiations with Inter Milan over the transfer of want-away midfielder Wesley Sneijder.

Sneijder has been linked with many clubs, but a move to Turkey was thought to not be on the cards, until today’s news. The Holland international has not played for Inter since September 25 due to contract disputes with the club.

Galatasaray won their 18th league title last year, most all-time in Turkey, and have progressed to the knockout-round of the UEFA Champions League, where they’ll face Schalke 04.

Here are some other stories to kickoff your Wednesday:

ARSENAL CLOSE TO SIGNING WALCOTT

Theo Walcott’s contract holdout tactics seem to have worked.

The 23-year-old forward will be offered a five-year contract worth £25 million, according to reports. The offer includes a £3 million signing bonus as well, and is an improvement to last fall’s £19.5 million offer that Walcott rejected.

There is no doubt that Walcott’s fine form recently has helped him in contract negotiations. The Englishman has scored eight goals and dished out six assists in the Premier League this season, the best marks on the team.

VILANOVA VISITS NEW YORK FOR A SECOND OPINION

Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova has traveled to New York for a second opinion on his recovery from cancerous saliva glands.

Vilanova was back on the sidelines this past weekend to watch Barcelona’s 4-0 drubbing of Espanyol, all of which was earlier than expected. Club President Sandro Rosell had announced earlier that Vilanova wasn’t expected to return until the middle of January.

Vilanova’s trip means that he will not be at this weekend’s Barcelona match against Cordoba.

SOUTH AMERICAN YOUTH CHAMPIONSHIP BEGINS TONIGHT

The spectacle that is South American football takes center stage this evening, as one of the elite youth tournaments in world football kicks off in Argentina.

The tournament that saw the coming-out parties of a couple of little known Argentinians named Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano has just as many potential stars in this years edition.

Brazilian centerback Doria, Ecuadorian forward Jose Cevallos, Jr, and Argentinian midfielder Adrian Ricardo Centurion are just a few names to keep an eye on over the next month.

QUICK KICKS

Juventus manager Antonio Conte has been cleared of match-fixing more games during his time at Bari. (REPORT)

David Beckham has indicated that he won’t be playing for West Ham or Queens Park Rangers when he decides his footballing future. (REPORT)

Bolton Wanderers forward Marvin Sordell has admitted he has a Facebook and Twitter problem. (REPORT)

20-year-old Australian starlet Tomas Rogic is closing in on a transfer to Celtic F.C. (REPORT)

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What do you think of these reports? Do you see Sneijder ending up at Galatasaray? Can Arsenal close the deal on Walcott? Who are some South American talents you’ll have your eye on during the South American Youth Championship?

Share your thoughts below.

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23 Responses to Wednesday Kickoff: Sneijder nearing move to Galatasaray, Walcott close to signing, and more

  1. patrick says:

    i by no means am making light of Sordell’s issue with internet and social media, but I did find it funny that they said they were helping by taking his phone away from him.

  2. xanaf says:

    Gooch should try to find a Turkish club. Im surr he’d get a 2year contract from a top team

  3. Tony in Quakeland says:

    As a Gunner fan, there is no player I go back and forth on more than Wallcott. Of course, that only matches his performances.

    • Mamadou Diallo says:

      Is it just me or does Theo Walcott remind anyone else of Landon Donovan? Maybe it’s just his physical presence but every time I watch Arsenal and Walcott he makes me think of Donovan.

      • Tony in Quakeland says:

        There is a resemblance, but the comparison certainly favor Donovan. I have watched both players closely from their teens, and watching Theo run past defenders only to dribble over the end line again and again makes you appreciate Landon’s vision, passing ability and intelligence. Exchange a 23 year old Donovan for a 23 year old Walcott, and Arsenal is a better team. Hell, do it today and it’s probably still true.

        Someone will jump on here and tell me I’m a know-nothing homer American…but it’s true. Donovan is the better player.

    • Modibo says:

      Well, at least they plunked down the bucks to keep one of their rising stars for once instead of letting him wander off to the highest bidder who only sees the good and not the bad performances.

  4. Strider257 says:

    Is Sneijder really ready to go to Galatasaray? That would be disappointing for a player of that calibre to not be playing in one of the larger leagues. But, money does talk and if no one else is willing to cough up his price he may have limited options.

    • Josh D says:

      His agent came out this morning and said he has had no contact with them so I doubt this. Plus with his wages, there are few teams who can afford that and the Turkish league is financially not where it was.

    • THomas says:

      I agree. I know money talks and maybe they’re offering him too much to turn down. But from being linked to ManU to going to Turkey? That’s quite a difference.

    • Mamadou Diallo says:

      I love “Galatasaray” as a word…it’s like the Turkish equivalent of “Mississippi”. Every other letter is an “a”. So much more fun to say than “Fenerbahce”. I always wanted to see a game at Ali Sami Yen – it’s just looked like an “experience”.

  5. Shane says:

    Isnt he at camp cupcake?

    • THomas says:

      I think he’s on trial until Friday then he comes back for camp. Unless a move is made which I’d be shocked.

  6. A wise man once says:

    I actually had a dream last night where Beckham went to Toronto…

  7. Dinho says:

    Thanks for the link…very encouraging. That guy has so much grit and determination, it’s an inspiration. Keep it up, Stu!

  8. David M says:

    I must not understand something… why was my post erased?