Why Everton should snap up Lewis Holtby before it's too late
There's much speculation lately over the captain of Germany under-21s Lewis Holtby.
The highly-rated attacking midfielder whose dad was a Scouse soldier stationed on the Rhine, supported England when they beat Germany 5-1 in 2001 and has let it be known he is open to persuasion to switch allegiance to his paternal country.
Which has led people to urge the FA to give him a call-up before he wins his first full German cap. Naturally they’re dithering, which means it won’t happen.
But England’s failure to act should be Everton’s gain. Holtby seems determined to impress his old man, an Everton fanatic who took his five year-old son to Wembley in 1995 to see them lift the FA Cup.
The 20-year-old admits his dad “infected me with the Everton virus” since when he’s supported the Blues and let it be known they’re the English club he wants to join.
Everton’s needs are greater than England’s right now. Maybe it’s time for Bill Kenwright to dust the cobwebs off that chequebook for a wunderkid who may genuinely believe all that “once a Blue, always a Blue” stuff.
Gianluca Vialli could have chosen a better week to hail the impact of Italian managers on the Premier League.
Or rather he could have chosen a better way of praising the success of Carlo Ancelotti and Roberto Mancini, than claiming they were over-throwing all the negative stereotypes associated with Italian football.
Anyone who watched last Saturday's 1-0 game at Eastlands between Man City and Chelsea, might disagree.
It looked as Italian as a shoot-out between rival mafiosa families in Luigi's Pizza Parlour on Holy Communion day.
Minus the thrills.
Let's keep the Italian influence to a minimum eh?