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Kickin' It: News and links for August 23rd, 2013

Is Gareth Bale Madrid bound? Will Juan Mata be the next piece in David Moyes' puzzle ? Will Wayne Rooney's move to Chelsea finally begin to make some progr'ess?All this in more in today's link roundup.

Michael Steele

The biggest story in all of football is Gareth Bale's transfer to Real Madrid. How a tremendous but not elite player ended up costing somewhere in the neighborhood of £95m is another subject altogether, but apparently Daniel Levy is not going to be made a fool of, or something, and this ridiculousness may well carry on for another week or so.

Elsewhere is England, it would appear as though Juan Mata may be on his way out of Chelsea. Now, it's difficult to believe this one, because Mata is a really, really good player and Jose Mourinho isn't so blind as to ignore thee obvious talent at his disposal in order to advance his own initiative. But then again, Chelsea seems to want Wayne Rooney, and if Mata is expendable that couled be one way to make up the gap.

Shifting gears to Spain, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid played to a 1-1 draw in the first leg of the Spanish Supercopa, with the home side's goal scored in spectacular fashion by former Barca player David Villa and the visitor's equalizer coming courtesy of new signing Neymar. Barcelona will certainly be the favored side in the return leg thanks to the friendly environs of Camp Nou.

And in news from my neck of the woods, 67,000+ people will pile into CentuyLink Field to witness the Seattle Sounders take on the Portland Timbers on Sunday. The Timbers have completely reinvented themselves this season and are one of the most enjoyable teams to watch in MLS, but the Sounders have some major star-power coming together for the first time this season. It's going to be a fun night in the Pacific Northwest.

Anything else interesting catch your eye? Be sure to let us share it in the comments.