Yesterday, there were reports that Nashville was chosen as the next MLS expansion franchise. While those reports have been proven to have been mistaken, Nashville is one of the 12 cities vying for fourMLS expansion spots, and is making their case stronger by announcing a $250 million, 27,000-capacity stadium at a Nashville fairgrounds site. According to Nashville’s mayor, the project is 90-percent privately funded, with the ownership group paying for construction delays as well as a lease. The ownership group would also pay the expansion fee, and the stadium would reportedly be ready by 2021.
First things first, let’s preface this by emphasizing “POSSIBILITY.“ The Catalonian independence referendum is very complicated, so we don’t want anyone thinking this is a done deal. That being said, Josef Bartomeu has said that if Catalonia gained independence from Spain, there would have to be a discussion (at the club and league level) of whether FC Barcelona would stay in La Liga or not. Catalonia's sport minister, Gerard Figueras, brought up the possibility of Barca playing in the Premier League (yes, England’s Premier League), citing Swansea as an example of a team that play in another country in the EPL (Swansea is in Wales). Another such example is Monaco playing in Ligue 1. Espanyol and Girona are also clubs, with Barcelona, who would have to decide where to play, and France and Italy were also named as possibilities. Another low-key option is for Catalonia to have its own league, but that would create a very low-level league with Barcelona on top every single year, which in terms of financial and legacy choices, moving to Serie A, Ligue 1, or the EPL would make more sense. This is far from over, but thinking of Barça in a league that is not Spain is crazy, and could very well become reality.
Chelsea are still waiting on just how long Alvaro Morata will be out due to his hamstring injury. After an MRI, Spain confirmed Morata has a "Grade II myofascial" hamstring injury, after he limped off the pitch 35 minutes into Chelsea’s match against Manchester City. Reports say he will be out four to eight weeks, but Chelsea apparently are not so sure about that, and are hoping he can be back earlier. Chelsea want to run their own tests, so Morata is now back in London. The target for his return, since they want him back as soon as possible, is October 14, right after the international break, but we will wait and see what Chelsea’s diagnosis is.
New York City FC Manager Patrick Vieira has said he is ready to coach in Europe, but he has no reason to leave NYCFC at this moment. NYCFC was Vieira’s first senior job after coaching Manchester City’s development squad, and he has had some resounding success in New York, making it to the playoffs and the conference semifinals in 2016. He was linked to Newcastle before Rafa Benitez went there, and is mentioned in the Arsenal conversation frequently. He has denied contact with Arsenal, but did say he talked to Ligue 1’s St. Etienne. He has also been linked to France’s National Team job, but says he is happy in New York and has no reason to leave.
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