By DAN KARELL
AS Monaco just can’t get enough.
After spending more than $172 million on the transfers for Radamel Falcao, Joao Moutinho, and James Rodriguez, the newly promoted Ligue 1 club is ready to spend some serious cash, offering Real Madrid nearly $133 million (€100m) for talisman Cristiano Ronaldo, according to a report in England.
If that price isn’t crazy enough, the report states that Monaco plans to make Ronaldo the best-paid player in the world, with a contract worth more than $26.5 million per season, putting him up with the likes of American sports stars like Kobe Bryant, Tony Romo, and Felix Hernandez.
Monaco is said to be keeping an eye on Ronaldo as he has yet to sign a new contract with Real Madrid, though there are conflicting reports on what he wants in his future. Some in Spain have said that it’s only a matter of time before he signs a new and improved deal this summer, while others say that he will see out his contract in the Spanish capital and leave on a free transfer in 2015.
Here are some more stories to get your Wednesday started:
ARGENTINA FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION BANS AWAY FANS
In a stunning development, the Argentina Football Association (AFA) has banned away fans from attending matches following the death of a supporter on Monday.
During a match at the Estadio Unico, the home of Estudiantes de La Plata, a fan from the visiting side, Lanus, was killed after clashes between away supporters and local police. According to reports in Argentina, the fighting started in the middle of the match and saw numerous fans leave their seats in the stadium and head outside. The match was eventually abandoned at halftime.
In response to the incident, Buenos Aires police had announced that away fans wouldn’t be allowed in stadiums in the city, with the AFA making the ban nationwide. There have been over 70 football supporters killed in Argentina since 2000.
MESSI, RONALDO, RIBERY RANKED EUROPE’S BEST
As if the four Ballon D’or trophies in a row weren’t enough proof, Lionel Messi can add another title to his virtual cabinet. Bloomberg’s top player in Europe.
Bloomberg Sports, a three-year-old division of the American financial information giant, has taken an analytical approach to ranking the top 50 soccer players in Europe. The list measures difficult-to-quantify statistics such as efficiency in tackling, ability to keep possession of the ball, and contributing toward the team’s offensive output (explained here)
Messi has taken the top spot in Bloomberg Sports rankings with a score of 91.25, followed by Cristiano Ronaldo and Franck Ribery in the list. Ribery is one of five Bayern Munich players ranked among the top 50 in Europe.
PSG CONSIDER VILLAS-BOAS AS ANCELOTTI REPLACEMENT
Andre Villas-Boas could end up playing a part in the Champions League next season.
The Tottenham manager, who narrowly missed out on next year’s Champions League with a fifth-place finish in the English Premier League, is on the short list from Paris Saint-Germain to take over the club when, inevitably, Carlo Ancelotti leaves for Real Madrid, according to reports in England.
The Spurs boss has not had the easiest of times in England, making it just nine months with Chelsea before being sacked, and taking over a Spurs side and failing to guide them back to the Champions League for the first time since 2010-2011. If Villas-Boas stays at Spurs this season, it will be the first time in his managerial career that he has lasted more than one season at a club.
Villas-Boas is seen as a “safety” pick by the PSG Qatari-based ownership if they fail to get any of their top choices to become manager.
Spain winger Jesus Navas officially completed his move to Manchester City on Tuesday. (REPORT)
FIFA has announced that the Under-20 World Cup will go on this month despite protests against the government that are dominating the local headlines. (REPORT)
Barcelona defender/midfielder Javier Mascherano was sent off during Argentina’s match against Ecuador for kicking the driver of a medical cart. (REPORT)
Israel departed the European Under-21 Championship that they are hosting with a high, defeating England, 1-0, in Jerusalem. (REPORT)
Italy’s 94th minute equalizer earned them top spot in the U-21 Championship Group A as they drew, 1-1, with Norway. (REPORT)
What do you make of these reports? Do you believe the Ronaldo to Monaco report? Do you agree with the AFA’s decision to ban away fans? Do you believe Messi is the best player in Europe?
Share your thoughts below.