Report: With Di Maria arriving, Manchester United close in on De Jong, Blind

6 Comments

With Angel Di Maria currently jetting to Manchester to tie up a record $100 million deal with United, the Red Devils plan on flying in a few more players to wrap up transfer deals before the Sept. 2 deadline.

According to a report from the Daily Telegraph, Dutchmen Nigel de Jong and Daley Blind — both of whom played for new United boss Louis van Gaal at the World Cup this summer — are set to join Di Maria and bolster United’s squad.

[RELATED: United ‘not good enough’]

A potential move for Juventus’ Arturo Vidal is also in the works but the Italian side are reluctant to sale, so De Jong could come in as a contingency buy for around $14 million. As for Blind, he is likely to cost around $20 million as the versatile young Ajax star can play in a variety of positions in midfield and defense and would add some real quality to United’s squad.

[RELATED: Welbeck to Everton?]

If the Red Devils succeed in getting these two players signed on, in addition to Di Maria, can you call their transfer window a roaring success? I’d say so. With Ander Herrera, Luke Shaw and Marcus Rojo on board, the addition of Di Maria, De Jong and Blind plus the culling of some deadwood means LVG will have strengthened his squad considerably. In their opening two games United have struggled with injuries but now that the treatment table is starting to empty and new faces are arriving, there should be a sense of optimism arriving at Old Trafford.

The final week of the transfer window promises to be an exciting one for United’s fan, as van Gaal also looks to move on the likes of Danny Welbeck, Javier Hernandez, Anderson, Shinji Kagawa and Tom Cleverley, who all face uncertain futures.

[RELATED: Carlo Ancelotti confirms Di Maria has “said goodbye” ahead of a transfer]

United’s dramatic rebuild, which they’ve threatened for so long, is inching towards becoming a reality as three new faces could arrive in the coming days.

STREAM LIVE: USMNT looks for 3 more points in Panama

Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Leave a comment

The United States looks to finish the international break in an automatic qualifier spot in the CONCACAF World Cup qualifying table when it faces Panama in Panama City at 10:05 p.m. EDT Tuesday.

A lot of the faces are the same from the 6-0 demolition of Honduras in California on Friday, though John Brooks and Sebastian Lletget are out with injury.

Jermaine Jones replaces Lletget while Tim Ream moves into the fray for Brooks. Geoff Cameron played Friday’s match with a minor injury, and moves out of the XI for Graham Zusi.

LINEUP

USMNT: Howard; Villafana, Gonzalez, Ream, Zusi; Bradley, Jones, Nagbe; Pulisic, Dempsey, Altidore

Subs: Bingham, Rimando; Beasley, Besler, Camron, Zimmerman; Acosta, Arriola, Bedoya, Kljestan, McCarty, Pulisic; Wondolowski

Reyes header gives Mexico three points in T&T (video)

Leave a comment

Diego Reyes’ 58th minute header off a corner kick gave Mexico a lead it wouldn’t give up in a 1-0 win over Trinidad and Tobago at Hasely Crawford Stadium in World Cup qualifying on Tuesday.

The win gives Mexico a table-topping 10 points, seven ahead of last-place T&T.

[ MORE: Honduras 1-1 Costa Rica ]

The Soca Warriors were in fine, stingy form early, and looked to have gone ahead on the counterattack when Joevin Jones belted a left-footer into the Mexico goal.

The linesman, however, ruled that Jones was offside. He almost certainly was not, as Mexico’s supreme luck in CONCACAF play continued for at least one night.

Hector Herrera hammered a shot off the far goal post early in the second half as Mexico attempted to grab control.

T&T goalkeeper Jan-Michael Williams jammed Miguel Layun’s shot over the bar moments before the breakthrough from Reyes.

Williams then saved Javier Hernandez’s 64th minute offering as Mexico looked to put three points to bed.

Joevin Jones won a free kick in the 76th minute that gave a brief moment of light to T&T’s hopes, but Jones hit the wall and Mexico cleared the ball.

Honduras holds Costa Rica 1-1

AP Photo/Moises Castillo
Leave a comment

Honduras did the United States a favor by taking a point from visiting Costa Rica in Tuesday’s CONCACAF World Cup qualifier in San Pedro Sula.

Anthony Lozano pushed a 35th minute chance past an indecisive Keylor Navas, as Los Catrachos set the stage for a hopeful three points.

[ STREAM: T&T-Mexico, Panama-USMNT ]

Vancouver Whitecaps center back Kendall Waston’s haphazard defending helped allow the goal, but he scored off a late Costa Rica corner kick to ensure Costa Rica will finish the international break in second place.

With four points, Honduras moves ahead of Trinidad and Tobago and the United States before both sides play Tuesday.

Costa Rica beat the U.S. 4-0 in 2016, while the Yanks battered Honduras 6-0 on Friday.

WATCH: Video Assistant calls back Griezmann goal

Leave a comment

France and Spain used the Video Assistant Referee program on Tuesday in a friendly, and the French likely rue that decision.

Antoine Griezmann had an incorrectly allowed goal reverse for offside, while Gerard Deulofeu saw an initially ruled offside goal allowed upon review in Spain’s 2-0 win over France.

[ MORE: Bolivia stuns Messi-less Argentina ]

Here’s an example, as Griezmann’s barely offside goal was overturned in less than a minute (Both calls took less than a minute to decide):

At the risk of sounding like a caveman, I really don’t like these razor thin offside calls being subject to review.

When you consider the improbability of timing the moment of contact with the ball — how many times have you seen a freeze frame conveniently used to make a case? — it just seems to mess with the spirit of sport.

What do you think?