Everton v Chelsea - Premier League

Report: Everton’s Ross Barkley to miss six weeks with training injury

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For Everton, 20-year-old midfielder Ross Barkley has grown into an important player for the Toffees, and losing him to a six-week knee injury doesn’t bode well for Roberto Martinez’s side in the short term.

According to The Guardian, Barkley injured his knee today as Everton began preparations for their opening Premier League competition against newboys Leicester City, and wore a knee brace when he exited the training ground. The certain extent of his injury will not be confirmed until his undergoes a scan on Saturday, but reports have detailed that his injury recovery time should be around six weeks.

In that case, Barkley would miss six games, and maybe a seventh, absent for contest vs. Leicester, Arsenal, Chelsea, West Bromwich Albion, Crystal Palace, Liverpool and Manchester United. Additionally, he would miss part of Everton’s Europa League and Capital One Cup competition.

Due to his great form a year ago, the midfielder recently signed four-year, £60,000-a-week contract this summer, keeping him at Goodison Park until 2018.

While Barkley totaled six goals in 34 appearances last season, his influence ddidn’t stop at his goal tally, since his technical play in the midfield made his team better as a whole. He was seen spearheading attacks, and his ability to do so earned him a World Cup spot on Roy Hodgson’s English squad.

Muhamed Besic, a new signing of Everton from Hungary’s Ferencvaros, is now poised to make his debut against Leicester City in place of Barkley.

Klopp to the Kop: Multiple reports say deal agreed at Liverpool

TURIN, ITALY - FEBRUARY 24:  Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp shouts to his players during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 match between Juventus and Borussia Dortmund at Juventus Arena on February 24, 2015 in Turin, Italy.  (Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images)
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Jurgen Klopp is on his way to Liverpool to sign a contract naming him the next coach of the Reds.

The celebrated manager, 48, has been on “hiatus” from football since leaving Borussia Dortmund last season.

[ MORE: Messi to stand trial in Spain ]

Reports starting emerging earlier today that an agreement was imminent, and now the BBC is among those reporting that Klopp will be rolled out Friday morning.

From the BBC:

No contract has yet been signed but that is viewed as a formality when Klopp arrives in Liverpool later on Thursday. He will be officially unveiled by Liverpool on Friday morning at 10:00 BST.

There’s not much to say besides this: Klopp’s addition to the Premier League will give more color and brilliance to the country’s footballing scene. Only a certain class of manager can be instantly expected to find a better system for an inherited group of players.

This could and should be a game changer on Merseyside.

Appeal rejected! Lionel Messi will face court trial in Spain

VIGO, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 23:  Lionel Messi looks dejected after the La Liga match between Celta Vigo and FC Barcelona at Estadio Balaidos on September 23, 2015 in Vigo, Spain.  (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)
Alex Caparros/Getty Images
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It was a mere 48 hours ago that Lionel Messi looked close to in the clear when it came to tax evasion charges.

Now the question is whether a Spanish court will lock away the greatest active footballer, as a judge rejected the prosecutors’ (!!!) request to drop the charges.

[ WATCH: Hilarious spoof pegs Messi, Ronaldo as “Friends” ]

Messi and his father have already made a $5.5 million corrective payment, but there’s principle in play here. And the judge wants to know how Messi can claim he had no idea what was being done with his money.

From the BBC:

Lawyers acting on behalf of the tax authorities demanded 22-month jail sentences for both defendants.

“There are rational signs that the criminality was committed by both accused parties,” wrote the judge in a court filing, according to the AFP news agency.

Can you imagine one of the world’s richer men ending up in a Spanish prison? It’s very difficult to consider. In some ways it’s more plausible that he would buy his own island and start the “Messi Isle Premiership”.

Still, we won’t laugh off the idea, especially with FIFA apparently going down. Messi in prison. That’s something. Sepp in Switzerland. Lionel in Spain.