The Tim Cahill transfer from Everton to New York Red Bulls has taken the football world by storm and nowhere more than in his native Australia where they are in shock.
The Aussie's were expecting Timmy to return to his homeland once his contract at everton had expired in two years time, they were to get a big surprise this morning when they woke up to the news that he is off to the U.S.A!
Here is the reaction from The Age today, one of Aus's top selling daily's:
'The fact that Tim Cahill has quit the English Premier League and moved to a tough but far less demanding competition is hardly a surprise.
The wear and tear on the body of a 32-year-old whose whole hearted, crash-bang style, was always likely to take its toll.
Cahill is to be commended for having been able to not just survive but prosper at the highest levels of the game for so long with Everton after enduring such a tough battle and arduous apprenticeship with unlikely Millwall before reaching the top.
Along the way he proved himself again and again an invaluable contributor with the happy knack of being able to score vital goals for both club and country.
In the process he became a local hero with Everton supporters - not least for the number of goals he scored in derbies against Liverpool - and a Socceroo legend as the first man to score for the nation in the World Cup finals, as he did with that brace one unforgettable afternoon in Kaiserslautern against Japan in 2006.
But while its not a shock that he has left the biggest league in the world as the twilight of his career approaches, his destination is a surprise.
Most pundits had pictured Cahill as a natural for one of the major Asian leagues, either Japan, rapidly developing China or the cash rich money mountains of the Middle East, where players of his stature and achievement can amass a king's ransom.
After all, he had literally been a poster boy for the Asian Football Confederation during the 2007 Asian Cup when his face, alongside the likes of Japan's Shunsuke Nakamura and South Korea's Park Ji Sung, adorned advertisements for the tournament.
Certainly Cahill himself gave the impression that he would join the growing numbers of Australians in pursuit of petro dollars in the Gulf sands only last month when the Socceroos battled to a draw in the stifling heat of Oman in a World Cup qualifier.
Cahill appeared to be making it clear he was open to offers from the Middle East when he told journalists: ''I am a massive fan of the Middle East, the cultures, the people. I have travelled a lot and I respect them a lot. I know what the experience is like.
"I have lived and breathed it. I have played in two Asia Cups and I have got great connections with a lot of important people overseas.I come on holiday in the Middle East a lot and I embrace the weather and the culture."
In the end the chances of playing alongside the likes of Thierry Henry and against players of the ilk of David Beckham, Robbie Keane, former Mexico captain and Barcelona defender Rafel Marquez and German World Cup midfielder Torsten Frings proved far more tempting than even the money that may or may not have been on offer in the Gulf.
Who can blame him? New York is one of the world's great cities, with a vibrancy and atmosphere few other places in the world can match. It is harder to think of a more complete contrast with the Middle East than that represented, personally and professionally, by the Big Apple.
For Cahill the last big mountains are a third World Cup with Australia and the possibility of finishing his international career in Sydney, winning the Asian Cup with the Socceroos on home soil in 2015.
Such is the lure of a place at the World Cup that even a key member of the national team like Cahill
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