Today comes word that Major League Soccer’s Disciplinary Committee has suspended Montreal Impact midfielder Sanna Nyassi one match for diving. (The video is below.)
He collapsed to the Stade Saputo turf in Montreal last week in the 78th minute against Chivas USA. The resulting penalty kick was the home team’s equalizer in a 1-1 draw – which may otherwise have been a valuable and highly beneficial 1-0 win for the visitors from Chivas USA, who have had so very few wins to celebrate in 2013.
While the suspension (to be served today during the Impact’s visit to New Jersey to meet the New York Red Bulls) may provide some vindication for the Goats and specifically for defender Mario De Luna, it sure doesn’t help in Chivas’ desperate reach for points.
(MORE: Montreal Impact-New York Red Bulls match preview)
And the back story (well, the “forward” back story in this case) makes Saturday’s announcement from the league office that much worse. Because Friday night in Philadelphia, the Goats were definitely victimized again!
We talked about it before, in a PST post that went up earlier this morning, about how Chivas USA was absolutely done wrong last night by one of the worst moments of MLS refereeing this year.
Nyassi’s dive was harder to spot, so we’re not running up conspiracy flags or anything insidious like that; that may have been an officiating boo-boo, but it’s certainly an understandable one. But it is fair to point out that Chivas USA has gotten a raw deal in two consecutive matches – and in two consecutive road matches, no less, where points were there for the taking.
Here is the dive for which Nyassi was suspended:
Reports out of Turkey say Newcastle United have finally struck the transfer market for a new No. 10.
[ MORE: West Ham adds Diop ]
Aksam reports that Rafa Benitez got the Magpies hierarchy to activate a near $12 million release clause for Besiktas midfielder Oguzhan Ozyakup.
The 25-year-old was part of Arsenal’s youth set-up until 2012, making two League Cup appearances in 2011-12 before moving to Besiktas.
Dutch-born Ozyakup is 35-times capped with a goal for Turkey, twice captaining the Crescent-Stars.
Ozyakup lost playing time to Talisca this season, and registered just four assists in 24 appearances. In 219 appearances for Besiktas, he’s posted 27 goals with 50 assists.
Like the move for Newcastle?
Manchester United and Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku has an inspiring and emotional post in The Players’ Tribune which tugs at the heart strings and explains his competitive fire.
[ MORE: West Ham adds Diop ]
Lukaku talks about how his family’s poverty caused him to become a fierce competitor in the hopes of meeting his dreams head-on and providing for his family.
The Belgian, 25, scored twice in his side’s 3-0 World Cup-opening win over Panama earlier this week, and is now far removed from his youth, but he tells his story as if it lives fresh in his mind.
From The Players’ Tribune:
There were even times when my mum had to “borrow” bread from the bakery down the street. The bakers knew me and my little brother, so they’d let her take a loaf of bread on Monday and pay them back on Friday.
Lukaku also talks about racism in football, his debut for Anderlecht, and that aforementioned competitive drive. It’s 100 percent worth the read.
West Ham has reportedly set a club record with its latest signing under new manager Manuel Pellegrini.
Issa Diop is the player, the 21-year-old Toulouse captain and center back costing the Irons around $29 million.
[ MORE: Arsenal signs Leno ]
Diop scored three goals with an assist and eight yellow cards in 31 Ligue 1 matches this season, giving the young defender 95 apps, six goals, three assists, and 23 yellows since debuting with the senior team at 18.
Capped by France at every level below the senior team, Diop’s 2.2 interceptions per game ranked sixth in Ligue 1.
Toulose finished 18th in Ligue 1, but won its promotion/relegation playoff to stay in the French top flight.
“I am very happy to sign for such a historic, English club, and I hope to show my best here. I am a very ambitious player and West Ham is a very ambitious club, as we’ve seen with the appointment of the new coach. I hope to help the team win lots of games and make the fans happy.”
In the third episode of Layla’s Occasionally Unbiased Football Show, England pulls out a massive win while VAR finds its way into the World Cup spotlight.
[ LIVE: World Cup scores ]
There will be plenty more to come over the next few weeks, with the show coming via the Men In Blazers.
Click play on the video above to watch the first episode in full.