Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Soccer Break Tuesday

SOCCER-ENGLAND/CUPThe pain for Arsenal fans just rolls on it would seem, as a trip to my office's kitchen confirmed on Monday when I heard two voices grumbling about "Van Persie" and "not enough shots".

The North London club's woes of the last two weeks or so have been much publicised, but perhaps at last there is some news to cheer Gunners fans up in the return of former keeper Jens Lehmann? Who would you prefer in goal? Lehmann, or Arsenal's only currently available goalie Manuel Almunia, in good form in the last two matches against Barcelona and Manchester United?

Keep a close eye out as the signing could be confirmed on Tuesday after Arsenal moved to sign the German late on Monday.

Some very recent news on the earthquake repercussions is that Japan's J. League has been postponed indefinitely, while news on the international friendlies is due on Wednesday.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

If Torres goes, Liverpool should heed Spanish lessons

SOCCER-SPAIN/If the excited reports on the 24-hour channels are correct, Fernando Torres may soon arrive at Chelsea's training ground to seal a move that will leave Liverpool in a dangerous situation -- under pressure to sign high-profile reinforcements and with wodges of money to spend as the deadline fast approaches.

Kenny Dalglish accepted on Monday that transfers are part of football and the internet chatter suggests many fans have reached the conclusion that Torres may have reached the end of the Anfield road.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Liverpool sign Suarez but will he play with Torres?

SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/UPDATE: Liverpool have confirmed that Torres put in a written transfer request on Friday night. The club have rejected it. Read the statement here.

Liverpool and Ajax have just announced that Luis Suarez is joining the Premier League club in a deal worth up to 26.5 million euros.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Liverpool have new owners – what they need now is Torres back to his best

SOCCER-ENGLAND/LIVERPOOL-SALEBuying Liverpool may prove the easy part for new owners who will be expected to spend freely to rescue the five times European champions from their worst start to a season in more than 50 years.

What John W Henry really needs is for Fernando Torres to recapture the form that made him the most feared striker in the Premier League.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

UPDATE: Quantum theories of score prediction won’t help you now, Mr Bond

torres.jpgMONDAY UPDATE: A truly appalling week for the panel. Admittedly, it was hard to predict Manchester United losing 1-0 at home to Aston Villa and Chelsea's 3-3 home draw with Everton but nevertheless it was dreadful.

Some serious soul searching must go on in the coming weeks whilst eating our mincepies and finding yet another pair of socks when opening our Christmas presents.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Thinking the unthinkable: should Liverpool sell Torres?

It is a little glib to suggest that Liverpool have a one-man strike force in Fernando Torres.

It seems almost beyond dispute, though, that whenever the Spaniard is unavailable Liverpool look ill equipped to challenge for the title, a situation hardly helped by the sales of Xabi Alonso, Robbie Keane and Alvaro Arbeloa in the past year.

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