Monday Kickoff: Ancelotti reveals desire to leave PSG; El Tri squad chosen for qualifiers and Confederations Cup; and more

CarloAncelottiLigue1Title (Getty)

By DAN KARELL

Carlo Ancelotti has finally come public with his desire to leave Paris Saint-Germain.

Just days after winning the club’s third ever Ligue 1 title, the Italian manager confirmed to a French television station that he wanted to depart the French capital and swap PSG with Real Madrid in La Liga. Rumors since last December have claimed that Madrid manager Jose Mourinho would leave at the end of the season, and the Spanish club’s recent results haven’t done anything to quell the rumors.

PSG president Nasser al-Khelaifi also confirmed Ancelotti’s decision, saying that he knew the 53-year-old boss wanted to leave but that they would oppose him getting out of his contract early.

Ancelotti, with new signings Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, as well as the mid-season acquisition of David Beckham, lead PSG to their first league title in 19 years. Through 37 matches, the Italian manager has seen his side finish victorious on 24 occasions on their way to 80 points.

Here are some more stories to get your Monday started:

CHEPO PICKS SQUAD FOR WCQ’S AND CONFEDERATIONS CUP

Javier Hernandez, Andres Guardado, and Giovani Dos Santos were among 23 players chosen by manager Jose Manuel de la Torre for Mexico’s heavy international schedule in June.

Midfielder Javier Acquino and defender Hector Moreno are the two other foreign-based players, as Chepo selected a mainly domestic squad. Noticeably absent is winger Carlos Vela, who scored 14 goals in La Liga this season with Real Sociedad, but hasn’t played for El Tri since March 2011.

Monterrey and Club America are both sending four players to the squad, with America’s two latest young stars forward Raul Jimenez and defender Diego Reyes highlighting the group. At the other end of the spectrum, midfielder Gerardo Torrado and defender Carlos Salcido were included in the squad, both players with well over 100 caps for Mexico

A side that has struggled to score goals in 2013 will face Nigeria in a friendly match on May 31, before three straight matches in CONCACAF’s World Cup qualifying against Jamaica, Panama, and Costa Rica, before a trip to Brazil to take part in the Confederations Cup.

DORTMUND SWEAT OVER HUMMELS FITNESS

As if losing the final match of the season to relegation-threatened Hoffenheim was bad, Borussia Dortmund lost defender Mats Hummels in the 78th minute to a sprained ankle, putting his fitness for the UEFA Champions League final in doubt.

Manager Jurgen Klopp is hopeful that the 24-year-old German international will be fit for action on Saturday, and the team’s doctor said that there is a high probability that Hummels could return in time, but it’s by no means a sure thing. If he is unable to play, Brazilian defender Felipe Santana will likely slot into the starting lineup.

Hummels missed 30 days between March and April of this year with torn ankle ligaments. In 41 matches played this season in all competitions for Borussia, the towering center back has scored three goals.

CRUZ AZUL EASES INTO FINAL AGAINST CLUB AMERICA

There will be an Mexico City final to find the Clausura champion of Liga MX, as Cruz Azul cruised past Santos Laguna over two legs, 5-1.

Following a dominant 3-0 victory on the road last Thursday, La Maquina followed up that performance with a 2-1 victory at home on Sunday in the playoff semifinals. Cruz Azul forward Javier Orozco got on the board in the 8th minute with a finish from the right side of the box, before adding a second in the 25th minute, heading home a cross inside the six yard box to effectively end the tie.

Santos added a goal in the 37th minute through forward Andres Renteria, but never could find the back of the net in the second half. Forward Darwin Quintero and defender Felipe Baloy were each sent off within the first 15 minutes of the second half, ending the visitors hopes of advancing in the playoffs.

On Saturday, Club America secured safe passage to the playoff finals with a 2-1 victory over Monterrey. America forwards Raul Jimenez and Christian Benitez scored in the second half before a stoppage time goal from Aldo De Nigris kept the Monterrey hopes alive for a last-gasp comeback.

The two-legged final series will begin on Thursday at Cruz Azul, and finish Sunday at Azteca.

QUICK KICKS

Corinthians have won the Sao Paulo state championship after a 1-1 draw with Santos, winning 3-2 on aggregate. (REPORT)

FC Porto have clinched their third successive Portuguese title with a 2-0 victory over Pacos de Ferreira. (REPORT)

Bayern Munich center back Holger Badstuber has suffered a serious injury setback, re-tearing his right ACL again during rehab. (REPORT)

Napoli manager Walter Mazzarri has announced his resignation after a second-place finish in Serie A. (REPORT)

Gael Clichy has signed a new four-year contract with Manchester City. (REPORT)

The Netherlands have called in an experienced squad for this summer’s UEFA U-21 Championships in Israel. (REPORT)

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What do you make of these reports? Do you see Ancelotti leaving PSG for Real Madrid? Do you like Chepo’s selected squad? Surprised Vela wasn’t called up? Do you see Hummels playing against Bayern in the final?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in European Soccer, Featured, Mexican Soccer, South American Soccer. Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Monday Kickoff: Ancelotti reveals desire to leave PSG; El Tri squad chosen for qualifiers and Confederations Cup; and more

  1. RB says:

    Really, PSG and RM should just work a manager trade…

    • fischy says:

      If the Special One wasn’t committed to Chelsea, that would be a great idea.

      • biff says:

        I personally don’t think Jurgen Klopp is committed to Chelsea, think he will be staying at least one more year at Dortmund. We shall see.

      • RB says:

        In terms of personnel and style (of play and just of the whole club), PSG and Mourinho would seem to be a good match. And a better one than Chelsea and Mourinho.

  2. Hogatroge says:

    I don’t know what Dortmund was thinking by playing their 1st choice lineup against Hoffenheim! There’s no way they could have dropped from 2nd place yesterday, even with a multi-goal loss.

    I realize you don’t want to let the fans down, but considering the low stakes for the Bundesliga season and the high stakes of the UCL final, this decision was asinine.

    Santana should have been starting yesterday, to get some minutes before the UCL final in case he was needed then for injury.

    • biff says:

      +1 Hogatroge, and you could tell Dortmund were not really focused on the game, although they most definitely wanted to be the team to send Hoffenheim to the 2. Bundesliga. Total humiliation for Dortmund and Klopp and not helpful for building confidence for the big game this weekend. I fear Dortmund is going to get whupped real bad, but am hoping for a miracle.

    • RB says:

      “I don’t know what Dortmund was thinking…”

      Well evidently they were following Barça’s CL example (re Messi).

  3. Dudester says:

    If I was a tri fan I would want chepo to resign.No coach is good enough to offset the loss of Vela.He doesn’t get picked for el tri because he and chepo don’t see eye to eye.El tri loses one of their(if not the best)players they have.

    • Neruda says:

      The pressure is on Chepo to win in three in a row qualifiers and then do well in confed and I wouldn’t be surprised to see more ties here and perhaps Jamaica can punish el tri this time in Jamaica. The formula for playing el tri has proven to work and all teams are going to use it in concocaf. Brazil is just going to run rampant on them.

    • beto says:

      indeed.. whatever it is that is causing Vela and Chepo to disagree is a shame however the 5 forwards that are on that squad (Hernadez, De Nigris, Peralta, Gio and Jimenez) should be able to get it done @ Jamaica, @ Panama and vs. Costa Rica (probably the two easiest road games and a home games).

      If they fail to get at least 6 points out of this I wouldn’t be surprised to see Chepo fired. They are still winless in 2013 and his support is razor thin..

      As for the Confed Cup; they are going to need some magic like the US did in 2009 to get out of that group.. i don’t think that Italy, Brazil and Japan are unbeatable (not the best Italy and Brazil teams ever) but if El Tri don’t get their s*** together they could get embarrassed..

    • AcidBurn says:

      Chepo has not lost an official game yet as coach of El Tri. (He’s coached 33 games, and only lost 3, all friendlies, with the last loss being against the US almost a year ago). Mexico will turn it around and be fine.

      Ask yourself, who is a better tactical coach, Chepo or JK?

    • RB says:

      “He doesn’t get picked for el tri because he and chepo don’t see eye to eye.”

      Interesting theory given that Vela has accepted only 1 call-up in the last 2 years or so, and that Chepo has recently said that he has no problem with Vela being on the team if he changes his attitude.

  4. Old School says:

    Ancelotti is 53?

    Dude looks 73.