And so another week comes to a close. We shut SSN Headquarters down for a couple of days because nothing was happening. The FIFA report on Qatar and Russia is a complete joke (as David Conn puts it, "Corruption, collusion and vote-buying are identified but not seen as damaging), and we really didn't want to think about the international friendlies that occurred. We do, however, have a soft spot for the U.S. National Team, so we're back today to take a look at The Yanks' match this afternoon with Colombia at Craven Cottage (2:45 p.m. EST on ESPN), along with whatever else is on tap for today and the weekend. Here we go.
Right. On to Europe. Miguel Delaney picks four "can't miss" qualifiers for you to check out here. He's got Scotland vs. Ireland, Romania vs. Northern Ireland, Netherlands vs. Latvia, and Belgium vs. Wales. Meanwhile, Adam Bate is looking at the players themselves. He's got Five to Watch right here.
Oh, dear. Germany play Gibralter. That could get ugly. Here are 9 Other Things To Look Out For in this next round of games. And tomorrow's game between England and Slovenia will be Wayne Rooney's 100th match for England. So...way to go Wayne.
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It's been a shitty season for Inter Milan. What does that mean? It means Walter Mazzarri has been fired and Roberto Mancini is set to return. Mancini enjoyed plenty of success with Inter in his last stint as their manager. We'll see if he can right the San Siro ship this time around.
Speaking of new/old gaffers, we mentioned earlier in the week that David Moyes had taken over at Real Sociedad. Jim White points out that if things were going better at Old Trafford, Moyes would probably still be out of a job. Makes sense.
Hmmm. Interesting, this: Growing up at Fulham: Life as an American youth in a foreign academy
Let's check in with Guillem Balague. He's dealing with all things Spain, including Costa, Cesc, and the national side.
Damn. African Cup of Nations. Equatorial Guinea is the new host after Morocco bailed. Have a glance at the action, won't you?
Back to Italy: The top three sides in Serie A last season were, in order, Juventus, Roma and Napoli. After 10 rounds of the current season, those three teams are, once again, leading the table in the same order they finished last time around. But that is not necessarily a sign that Italian domestic football is set for an unexciting repeat of least season.
And finally...Richard Williams claims that the international friendly is an institution worth cherishing. We suppose if we could have headed down to Upton Park to catch Aguero, Messi, and Co. lighting it up we'd appreciate the meaningless matches a bit more. But, we could not.