By Tim Stannard
Barca find perfectly polite time to unveil Arthur
Thank you, Barcelona. A club with a little bit of class.
On Wednesday, Real Madrid received the fairly insignificant wrath of Sports Burst by deciding to announce the theft of the Spain coach and the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo at the start and finale of the World Cup, as the ultimate media wind-stealers of what should have been a joyous footballing fiesta.
The esteemed institution of Barcelona is brought up a little better and has helped everyone out during a post-semifinal lull on Thursday by unveiling their new midfielder, Arthur. The 21-year-old has jumped ship from Gremio and has the unenviable task of helping to rebuild a midfield that lost both Andres Iniesta and Paulinho over the summer.
In a bright day at the Camp Nou, Arthur ticked the boxes of all the right things to say at a moment like this – a dream to play for Barcelona, wants to win lots of trophies, joined greatest team in the world, greatest players in the world and most important of all – “Mr Messi likes the aircon at 73 degrees at all times, and I will make sure this happens. And no direct eye contact.” See? Classy on the way.
Modric set for huge summer makeover
After Sunday’s World Cup final, Luka Modric is going to have to seriously up his game and get a grip. Off the pitch, anyway.
On grass, the Croatian midfielder has masterminded a gritty yet sparkling charge to a face-off with France, having tirelessly run the show in Russia through three sets of extra time play. That is just weeks after that winning that Champions League thing.
Not unsurprisingly, the Real Madrid man has joined the Ballon d’Or debate. The argument goes that if Cristiano Ronaldo is a contender, then so is his less glamorous (ex) teammate. And that’s where the problem lies with Modric. With half the battle to win these prizes being fought in the realm of social media lobbying, then Modric is going to have to up his game with a Property Brothers style refit this summer.
That means snazzy haircut, designer threads, upping his internet game (last tweet was 18-months-ago) with more ab shots, being on a boat more often and maybe getting some defining facial hair. Thursday’s press around the world is in agreement is that Modric has that playing football side of things buckled down. Just one half to go.
Fulham get Seri-ous as Higuain makes demands
Starting off with a done deal and new Premier League outfit, Fulham, has pulled off quite the coup by picking up sprightly Nice midfielder, Jean Michel Seri, on a four-year deal but costing the Cottagers $30 million.
Right – onto the scurrilous rumors and leading with Calciomercato whispering that Gonzalo Higuain being open to the move to Chelsea over the summer – to make room for Cristiano Ronaldo – but demanding a hefty salary from the English outfit and also a bonus from Juve for leaving some space in the locker room.
While Barcelona is busy showing off their new Brazilian midfielder, Arthur, the Catalans might also be on the hunt for another with PSG’s Adrien Rabiot supposedly in the crosshairs according to Le Parisien.
Start get excited about a brand new daily show starting from Monday at 12PM ET / 9AM PT – Transfer Tracker. Our pundits will pick through to wheat from the…er…wheat from the daily rumor mill.
Serena sets sights on Wimbledon final
Wednesday’s play at Wimbledon turned out to be hugely epic with a big, old surprise thrown in for good measure – and tears from diehard fans - with Roger Federer bowing out in the quarterfinals to Kevin Anderson, despite the Swiss racket-swinger holding a two-set lead. An almost apocalyptic chain of events.
The South African victor will now go on to take on America’s John Isner to ensure that at least one less familiar face appears in the final on Saturday – following in Croatia’s footsteps in football. Novak Djokovic will take on Rafa Nadal in the second semi, which already looks like a bulldozing encounter.
What would I do without all your support? I love you all!! pic.twitter.com/HBpSzlFbgK— Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) July 10, 2018
Thursday will also be drama city in London – zip code Boom! - with the women’s semifinals which are already underway with Angelique Kerber having defeated Jelena Ostapenko. Serena Williams will be taking to the court to turn back time in an attempt to battle through to the Wimbledon final against Kerber in a clash against Germany’s Julia Gorges.
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The life philosophy of Sports Burst is that if you are not upsetting someone, then you are not trying hard enough. Sports Burst is a daily trawl and troll through the morning's sports news to bring you fact-nuggets to make you both smile and swear. Hopefully at the same time