"I just need a little more time!"

The Lead

Yesterday, in a press conference for the release of a Canada centenary kit I went to for the express purpose of getting a free shirt (yeah, that’s right), Canada mens national team coach Stephen Hart was asked the inevitable question if he’s heard anything over whether Junior Hoilett or Jonathan De Guzman will suit up for the Canada.

“In all honesty, you guys talk to them. I don’t think it is going to be a reality, not in the near future. But other than that you should speak to them directly. Nothing’s changed.”

In fact, this would be a great time to talk to at least one of them. About six months ago, using all my zero years of journalism school, I sent an email to Junior Hoilett’s dad after a ten second Google search revealed this, yet more evidence that being a beat reporter is difficult, demanding work that can only be left to the experts. In my last two email exchanges, dad said no decision will be made until Junior’s contract situation with Blackburn had been resolved.

Well, Blackburn have been relegated, which would mean that some sort of deal for Junior will almost certainly be imminently struck with another club that may or may not be called Arsenal. So, in theory, as soon as Junior signs with said club, he will make his much awaited decision on whether he’ll come to our rescue in the Hex. Welcome to Canadian soccer ladies and gentlemen. One of the oldest FAs in the world, one of the first countries to win a gold medal in association football (1904), one of the first countries to play an international outside the home nations (1885), and 100 years later we’re reduced to firing off emails to see if Canadian players abroad will in fact play for Canada.

Still, maybe then it would be a good idea for all of us to take Stephen’s advice on this one. The worst thing that could happen is he could say no.

Canada

Stephen Hart says “teamwork” is necessary for Canada to get past the second round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying. That and 12 points.

Squizz on the centennial kit, which I think is pretty boss. Ben Massey adds his two cents.

A single win for TFC apparently means everything’s going to be okay from now on.

Duane has a balanced take that doesn’t make me want to smash the screen.

Mountroyalsoccer feels out the competition.

England

Liverpool media chief Ian Cotton is leaving the club after 16 years service, following the Suarez debacle.

Manchester City’s visit to QPR is just a game.

Ferguson gets his elbows in.

Chris Smalling out of Euro 2012 with a groin injury.

Venky’s insist Blackburn isn’t for sale.

Wolves’ new manager is named Stale.

Gareth Bale is not going to Barcelona.

Don’t do it Pep! It’s a trap!

Italy

Pirlo says Max Allegri “didn’t want him” at Milan.

So is Luis Enrique leaving, FFS?

Germany

A look at Bundesliga ticket prices.

Bits and bobs

A James Richardson paper review!

The Houston Dynamo’s new stadium sure looks purdy.

And that, give or take, is the story so far…

A very exciting series.

Football Fairground on the Hollywood-ification of football fandom.

Miss yesterday’s Vod?