Reuters Soccer Blog

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Do Manchester United need Wesley Sneijder?

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Paul Scholes may have left a huge pair of boots to fill in Manchester United’s midfield, but Alex Ferguson may not have to add a big-money signing to his squad if their performance in a captivating 3-2 Community Shield win over Manchester City is anything to go by.

While Ferguson has apparently made several attempts to lure Inter Milan and Netherlands playmaker Wesley Sneijder to his outfit during the break, United’s second-half comeback at Wembley suggests he may have found one or two replacements closer to home.

Trailing 2-0 at the interval, Ferguson threw Tom Cleverley into the fray and the youngster made an immediate impact with his crisp passing and movement which kept City on the back foot until the final whistle.

Cleverley’s mature performance capped an excellent pre-season buildup for the 21-year old midfielder, who has now been called up to the England squad.

Ballon d’Or shortlist should give Premier League pause for thought

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SOCCER-SPAIN/England performed well below expectation at the World Cup in South Africa and judging by the FIFA Ballon d’Or list announced on Tuesday the stock of the Premier League is not at its highest either.

Just three players from the league that likes to call itself the best in the world are on the list and it would be a huge surprise if any of them made it into the top three:

Selling Robben is good business but is it good sense?

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If reports in Spain are correct and Real Madrid have agreed to sell Arjen Robben to Bayern Munich for 25 million euros, that would seem to be an excellent piece of business for the Spanish club.

Real paid a king’s ransom to take Robben from Chelsea a couple of years ago — when £24 million pounds was a lot more in euros than it is now — and I think it’s fair to say that he didn’t quite make the impact the fans were hoping for.

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