Bang the drum for Spanish football!! One of the treats of the match at Foxborough. (photo: Allen Dodson)
A bit of a calm before the storm?
Both the Daily Mail and Marca report Arsenal wants Thiago Alcantara plus gobs of cash for Cesc. I hope our colleagues at Barca Blaugranes can explain to me why Barca should even consider this, because I DO NOT GET IT!! Alexis Sanchez, that I get. (and since Udinese is one of our possible CL playoff opponents, go ahead, Barca, sign him if you like). And the Spanish papers report Bojan is uninterested in leaving, whether for Villarreal or elsewhere, but the Daily Mail (naturally) has Arsenal and Liverpool chasing him.
Bottom line, a Rossi for cash deal is seeming more likely than a Rossi for less cash plus players.
Enough of that, let's get back to the lovely yellow of Villarreal.....
EPM summarizes the situation: Villarreal wants Juan Carlos to go somewhere to get playing time, but don't want to lose him permanently. Matilla seems more-or-less likely to continue in the first team, especially if the Marcos Senna renewal doesn't work out. Cristobal has done OK at Elche, who are in the Segunda playoffs; his contract runs until 2013 but Villarreal seem willing to move him along in some fashion.
As for the other loanees, EPM considers Montero and Altidore have not done that well in their loan spells. Montero might be packaged as part of the deal for Sporting's Canella; Jozy who knows, but it sounds as though the club is ready to take a loss on his purchase and move on. 1 goal in 12 appearances at Bursaspor isn't making him seem a hot property.
And then there is Marcano. Apparently Getafe haven't indicated they want to take up their purchase option; Valverde's Olympiacos might be interested but no concrete offers for him have emerged.
Our internationals are in Venezuela, where they trained in front of 6000 more fans than they did in Foxboro. EPM thought Capdevila, Marchena and Bruno might start this evening but latest reports are only Marchena.
And the Villarreal CF gala on Thursday (20:15 Spanish time) will be streamed on the web through the official web site. Does this mean there will be some sort of big news, as Kenez commented earlier? We'll have to wait and see!
UPDATES: Malaga makes cheap offer to buy pretty much all of Villarreal's Spanish internationals (you'll remember they inquired about Capdevila and Santi earlier) , but I don't think there's much in those rumors.
What is interesting is the last paragraph of the Superdeporte article which links Villarreal to Nicolas N'Koulou, central defender currently at AS Monaco (recently relegated from Ligue 1). Young six-foot Cameroonian central defender, sounds interesting.
And finally, Joan Oriol's twin brother Eduard (Edu) is among five players released from Barca B. Might we see him in yellow?