Sports Burst - Will Cavani Be Neymar Party Pooper?

Reuters

By Tim Stannard

 

Thursday could see final transfer bid from Atletico Madrid for Edinson Cavani

 

Thursday brings news that Neymar really is maturing as a fully-rounded human being as he hurtles towards his thirties and faces reality that he is now stranded at PSG, with little hope of rescue by Barcelona. 

L'Equipe reports that the narcissistic Neymar's 28th birthday celebrations on Sunday are only going to be mildly over the top this year. 

The Eiffel Tower may not even be illuminated in the colors of the Brazilian flag. 

The traditional military parade will put on ice. 

There may be no ventriloquist act from President Emmanuel Macron that routinely has the G7 summit in stitches every year. 

That low key. 

No promises on that of Neymar's sister on March 11th, though. The footballer has been out of action on that date for the last six years. 

Sunday's very public "private" birthday affair in an exclusive venue in the 16th 'arrondissement' - one of Sports Burst's favorites - will see guests having to attend dressed all in white for the function. 

Now one big question is whether Edinson Cavani will be there. 

Sports Burst is still sensing in its waters that the move to Atletico Madrid is not done and dusted after reading reports of a final push by the Rojiblancos for the player on Thursday, and Le Parisien writing that Fernando Llorente of Napoli will be the replacement for Cavani if the deal goes through. 

Wednesday's 4-0 victory for Real Madrid against Zaragoza in the Copa Del Rey showed that Cavani - even with one day's training - could be key if Atletico Madrid are not to have a very bad time of it in Saturday's Madrid derby that is live, live, live on beIN SPORTS at 10AM ET. 

 

Barcelona continue forlorn striker search 

 

Barcelona will be multitasking on Thursday, which is not a great sign considering the club has trouble dealing with just the one task at a time. 

Barca are in action in the Copa del Rey against Leganes in the Camp Nou looking for some relief for Quique Setien who has only been in charge of the team for three games but now feels like he has been leading the club through a time-dilation 15-match full-on crisis. 

The club is also looking for the Goldilocks of strikers until the end of the season - a proven goalscorer but not so good that he is wanted at his team. Classy, but cheap. Experienced, but not overbearing enough to irk Lionel Messi. And not Kevin-Prince Boateng again, or 2020's equivalent of him. 

Barcelona appear to have made a go at signing Everton's Richarlison, but had that offer rebuffedCarles Perez may have partly fit that Barcelona bill if the club hadn't loaned out the striker to Roma, who officially announced the deal on Thursday. 

The Sports Burst live show will be wondering what to make of it all at 12PM ET on beIN SPORTS USA Facebook page and Youtube channel. 

 

Sofia Kenin causes home shock to reach Australian Open final 

 

The Australian Open has reached the business end of the tournament with some bad news for local fans in Melbourne but good news for America and freedom.

World number one and top seed, Ashleigh Barty - a figure so Australian she even plays cricket as well - lost in straight sets in the semifinals to the very American Sofia Kenin.

 

Kenin, who is seeded 14th and hails from Pembroke Pines, Florida, will now make her debut in a Grand Slam final where she will face Spain's Garbine Muguruza.

There was mild sporting mourning in the men's bracket though with Novak Djokovic defeating Roger Federer in the semifinals 7-6, 6-4, 6-3. Djokovic will now play the winner of the clash between Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev as the Serb attempts to win a 17th Grand Slam title.