Some leagues have already begun, but for the big boys it is more about snapping up players. For everyone else it is about distraction before the grand bow.
What this normally means is a string of transfer stories less plausible than a Beatles reunion, early mind games between embattled managers and a few poorly contested friendlies to run under fans noses.
Soccer rumors run rife at this time of year. The Robin Van Persie saga and the Luka Modric drama drag on, but there are also stories circulating about Hulk’s future, Marouane Chamakh dropping down to Blackburn on loan and Arsenal signing Manchester City’s Nigel De Jong to make up for Van Persie leaving and Alex Song switching to Barcelona.
Will any of these come true? It remains to be seen, but part of being a football fan is strapping yourself in and preparing for turbulent conjecture and senseless pre-season trips.
- Above is an image of the great and powerful Pele, sporting a Sweden shirt as he promotes a friendly between Brazil and Sweden. The match commemorates Brazil’s 1958 triumph at the Swedish World Cup –Brazil’s first world title. It will also be the last game played at the Rasunda stadium, which is due to be demolished.
- Here is a video of a shocking penalty played out in an early Austrian league game between Salzburg Red Bull and Rapid Vienna. Jonathan Soriana could potentially damage the Curiosity probe with this one… (listen out for the commentators mentioning an ‘American Football’ conversion).
- This is a clip from an abandoned pre-season match between Benfica and Fortuna Dusseldorf. Why was it abandoned? Because the referee was out for the count…