25/11/2010 – Thursday’s Paper Round-Up

25 11 2010
Rio Ferdinand of Manchester United, Roque Sant...

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Liverpool are ready to challenge rivals Manchester United for Rosenborg’s Ghanaian midfielder Anthony Annan.

CSKA Moscow’s Japanese international Keisuke Honda is attracting interest ahead of the January transfer window with Arsenal, Liverpool, and AC Milan the interested parties.

Arsenal, Tottenham and Newcastle are battling for FC Lorient striker Kevin Gameiro. AS Monaco, Hamburg, Schalke 04 and Benfica are also interested in the 23-year-old.

Blackburn are weighing up a £4m January move to bring Manchester City striker Roque Santa Cruz (left) back to Ewood Park.

Stephen Ireland is looking for a January move away from Aston Villa. Fulham boss Mark Hughes is keen after the pair worked together at Manchester City, but the Cottagers would struggle to find the £8m asking price.

Liverpool and Tottenham target Ola Toivonen expects to stay at PSV Eindhoven this winter – but the Sweden striker has opened the door to a summer move.

Lille admit they face a battle to keep hold of Liverpool target Eden Hazard. The 19-year-old winger is also been tracked by Arsenal and Manchester United.

Liverpool scouts have also been keeping tabs on CSKA Moscow’s £10million rated Czech Republic striker Thomas Necid.

Goalkeeper David De Gea has insisted he will be staying at Atletico Madrid, despite interest from Manchester United.

Dimitar Berbatov’s agent has claimed the Manchester United striker will not be going anywhere in January. Emil Dantchev said: “There’s nothing to say. He will stay in Manchester.”

Manchester City and Chelsea are keen on Paris Saint-Germain’s teenage striker Jean-Christophe Bahebeck. The 17-year-old has yet to sign professional forms with the French club.

Chelsea are tracking Partizan Belgrade’s teenage centre-back Stefan Savic as a candidate to bolster their threadbare defence.

Championship promotion chasers Swansea City want Chelsea striker Daniel Sturridge on loan.

Manchester City have made an enquiry about Udinese’s £15m-rated defender Cristian Zapata.

Blackburn boss Sam Allardyce has been promised funds to bolster his squad in January by the club’s new Indian owners.

Middlesbrough defender David Wheater will move to the Premier League in January, says his former team-mate, Aston Villa winger Stewart Downing.

Sheffield United boss Gary Speed is chasing Arsenal’s highly-rated young striker Jay Emmanuel-Thomas for a loan deal.

Birmingham City’s £3m midfielder Michel is wanted by Real Mallorca in January on a six-month loan deal.

Bolton are ready to let Andy O’Brien join Leeds permanently when the transfer window opens. The defender has extended his loan spell at Elland Road until the start of January.

Crystal Palace manager George Burley is set to make a shock move to take Notts County’s much-travelled striker Lee Hughes on loan.

Millwall manager Kenny Jackett is ready to bid for Bournemouth’s 12-goal Northern Ireland striker Josh McQuoid.

Greek striker Georgios Samaras is poised to be sold by Celtic in January after talks over a new contract stalled, with two Spanish clubs, including Hercules, declaring an interest.

West Ham striker Carlton Cole has questioned the tactics of under-fire Hammers manager Avram Grant during their 3-0 loss at Liverpool last weekend. “In the first 10 minutes we had lost the game, psychologically anyway,” said Cole.

Chelsea striker Salomon Kalou insists the west London club have not been affected by last week’s shock departure of assistant manager Ray Wilkins.

Chelsea striker Daniel Sturridge insists there is no crisis at the club despite recent speculation over the future of manager Carlo Ancelotti.

Liverpool’s Ryan Babel has blamed former Reds boss Rafa Benitez for the problems with form and fitness that have blighted his time at Anfield. “I wasn’t allowed to train extra under our former manager. Even when I wasn’t involved,” said Babel on his Twitter feed.

German former Tottenham midfielder Steffen Freund says English football needs to take its lead from Germany if the England team is to be successful. The German national U17 coach believes English clubs need to place greater focus on youth development.

Former Arsenal midfielder Stewart Robson believes the Gunners are suffering from mental problems and they must overcome them quickly if they are to challenge for the Premier League title. The club have lost four of their last six games in all competitions.

Wales still want veteran Manchester United winger Ryan Giggs, who is on a six-man shortlist, as their next national manager.

Former assistant manager Ray Wilkins was sacked by Chelsea only two weeks after a bust-up with the club’s chief executive Ron Gourlay, who had criticised the management team’s use of substitutes.

Scotland’s referees will today tell the Scottish Football Association that they will not call off their planned weekend strike, but Dutch referees are poised to ensure that the six Scottish Premier League fixtures and the ALBA Challenge Cup final will go ahead.

Only one match – Sunday’s ALBA Challenge Cup final – is guaranteed to go ahead this weekend unless the Scottish Football Association can hammer out a peace deal with referees over their strike threat.

Scottish Football League chief executive David Longmuir is demanding to know by lunchtime on Thursday if Division One, Two and Three games, plus the ALBA Challenge Cup final, will go ahead despite the threat of a referees’ strike.

The Scottish Football Association has provided an assurance to Scottish Premier League clubs that their matches will go ahead this weekend even if there is a strike by referees.

A large number of Scotland’s category three referees are unhappy at the stance of their senior colleagues and are dismayed that there was no strike ballot among all members of the Senior Scottish Football Referees Association.

The use of foreign officials would have to be approved the Scottish Football Association’s referee committee, which is understood to be sympathetic to Scottish referees’ strike action.

Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez has seen his football exploits recognised by a salsa tune. The World Red Army featuring salsa artist Choco Orta have released Chico Is The Man, which details the 22-year-old’s rise to stardom.

For full stories, head over to the BBC website.

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31/10/2010 – Sunday Paper Round-Up

31 10 2010

Spanish giants Barcelona could come in for Tottenham midfielder Luka Modric after losing patience in their bid to lure Arsenal’s Cesc Fabregas to the Nou Camp.

Manchester United look set to make a move for Lille’s £12m-rated teenage midfielder Eden Hazard.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=david+de+gea&iid=8772029″ src=”http://view2.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/8772029/europa-league-final-match/europa-league-final-match.jpg?size=500&imageId=8772029″ width=”234″ height=”363″ /] Manchester United are also being linked with Athletico Madrid’s highly-rated teenage goalkeeper David de Gea (left), said to be worth £18m.

Manchester City have vowed to outbid any of their rivals when it comes to signing Spanish striker Fernando Torres from Liverpool next summer.

Meanwhile, City striker Roque Santa Cruz is on the verge of a sensational move to Sven-Goran Eriksson’s Leicester City.

Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson is planning a £9m January transfer window move for Wigan winger Charles N’Zogbia.

Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson says he does not fear Kenny Dalglish as a rival for his job and has only praise for the Kop hero’s work as club ambassador and scout.

Sir Alex Ferguson has ruled out any transfer activity in the January window and says injured striker Wayne Rooney may have to wait until December before being recalled to Manchester United’s first team.

Striker Michael Owen could be sacrificed as Manchester United look to slash their wage bill following Wayne Rooney’s pay rise – while Aston Villa boss Gerard Houllier is eager to take Owen on.

Birmingham City manager Alex McLeish is so keen to keep James McFadden he is set to offer him a contract extension even though the striker is on the long-term injury list.

Tottenham are prepared to offer their goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes a contract that would see the Brazilian shot-stopper remain a Spurs player until 2015.

Ipswich chiefs could be forced to choose between boss Roy Keane and 17-year-old striker Connor Wickham because the manager has fallen out with the teenage starlet.

Sunderland manager Steve Bruce says his England Under-21 midfielder Jordan Henderson is the best young player in Britain, and admits he may struggle to keep him at the Stadium of Light.

Manchester United midfielder Owen Hargreaves will make a decision on his injury-ravaged career in the new year. The 29-year-old has been out since 2008 after surgery on both knees.

Former FA chief executive and Liverpool fan Brian Barwick is being lined up for a boardroom role by the new owners at Anfield, possibly as acting chief executive.

The billionaire owners of QPR insist there will be money to spend if Neil Warnock gets the team promoted to the Championship. Vice-chairman Amit Bhatia said: “the dream is to get into the Champions League.”

Former West Ham, Charlton and Southampton manager Alan Pardew is set to replace George Burley at Crystal Palace “within 10 days.” A former Palace player, Pardew scored the winner as they beat Liverpool 4-3 to reach the 1990 FA Cup Final.
Scores of Tottenham fans may not be able to watch their club entertain Inter Milan in the Champions League on Tuesday after a ticketing error sold seats that were not available.

Chelsea defender Ashley Cole may have left Arsenal but he hasn’t forgotten the Gunners’ kit man Vic Akers, whom he rescued after a parking row at Stamford Bridge earlier this month.

Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger says his Manchester United-supporting brother keeps urging him to sign for the Red Devils. “Maybe they can swap me for Rooney,” he joked.

For full stories, head over to the BBC website.

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27/10/2010 – Wednesday’s Paper Round-Up

27 10 2010

Manchester City striker Roque Santa Cruz intends to leave the club in January – and suggests fellow City forward Carlos Tevez could follow him through the exit door.

Fulham manager Mark Hughes will try to bring Santa Cruz to Craven Cottage during the January transfer window. Hughes signed the Paraguay frontman while in charge of Manchester City and Blackburn.

Manchester City may make a move for Lazio’s Romanian defender Stefan Radu, who is eager to leave the Italian club in the January transfer window.

The Eastlands outfit are also interested in Sporting Lisbon defender Daniel Carrico. Juventus and Atletico Madrid are among those eyeing the Portugal Under-21 star.

Manchester United target Steven Defour says he is willing to move to Old Trafford. The 22-year-old Standard Liege star is regarded as one of the best midfielders in Belgium and has been tracked by the Red Devils for more than a year.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=darijo+srna&iid=7268873″ src=”http://view.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/7268873/darijo-srna-croatia-2009/darijo-srna-croatia-2009.jpg?size=500&imageId=7268873″ width=”234″ height=”275″ /] Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti is considering a cut-price move for Shakhtar Donetsk’s Croatian full-back Darijo Srna (left) in January.

Queens Park Rangers are hoping to boost their defence by acquiring Sean Morrison of Swindon but face a battle with Newcastle and Sunderland for the highly rated 19-year-old.

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has spoken out for the first time over the fury surrounding his contract wrangle, insisting: “I was never going to leave Man United”.

United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has stepped up his plan to get the club’s key players to commit to the Old Trafford outfit by offering John O’Shea a new £16.5m contract.

Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson will not target any marquee signings in the January transfer window as New England Sports Ventures, the club’s new owner, looks to put a stop to the profligate spending the company believes has hampered the club’s progress in recent years.

Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce and chairman John Williams are likely to keep their jobs when the expected £46m takeover by Indian group Venky’s goes through in November.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted he is under pressure to bring the club’s five-year wait for a trophy to an end this season.

Gunners winger Theo Walcott has played down his side’s title chances, despite the 3-0 win at Manchester City on Sunday. Walcott is urging fans not to get carried away by his team’s impressive start to the season.

Walcott’s team-mate Andrey Arshavin is set to begin talks with Arsenal over a new £80,000-a-week deal. The forward’s current contract expires in 19 months’ time.

Everton manager David Moyes insists Jermaine Beckford will adapt to the Premier League, despite the striker’s poor start to the season. Moyes signed the 26-year-old from Leeds on a free transfer in the summer.

Celtic boss Neil Lennon has denied whipping up the frenzy that led referee Willie Collum to receive death threats following Sunday’s Old Firm defeat by Rangers.

Fans of Paul the psychic octopus who are in mourning after his death can take comfort from the news that his spirit will live on – in clothing lines and mobile phone applications. The creature, who correctly predicted the outcome of all Germany’s matches – as well as the final – at the 2010 World Cup, also features in a documentary.

Manchester United fans flocked to the club’s Old Trafford megastore on Tuesday. However, it was not striker Wayne Rooney’s name they wanted on the back of their replica jerseys – it was that of Mexican forward Javier Hernandez, the new United hero who has his nickname Chicharito emblazoned across his number 14 shirt.

Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier has warned his players there is no place for nightclubs and alcohol in a modern footballer’s life.

For full stories, head over to the BBC website.

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27/08/2010 – Friday Transfer Talk

27 08 2010

Manchester City’s Emmanuel Adebayor is determined to leave Eastlands before the end of the transfer window if an offer comes in for him.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=Klaas+Jan+Huntelaar&iid=9206032″ src=”http://view4.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9206032/cameroon-netherlands/cameroon-netherlands.jpg?size=500&imageId=9206032″ width=”234″ height=”348″ /] Tottenham are in talks with AC Milan over bringing Dutch striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (left) to White Hart Lane on a season-long loan deal. The move will include the option to buy at the end of the spell, with the sum of £12m thought to be the asking price.

Newcastle and West Ham are keen on signing Tottenham striker Robbie Keane on loan before the transfer window shuts on Tuesday.

Liverpool and Newcastle will find out soon who has won the race to sign Marseille winger Hatem Ben Arfa. The 23-year-old has gone on strike at his French club in an effort to force through a move. German side Werder Bremen are also interested.

Fulham boss Mark Hughes is set to raid his former club Manchester City to sign striker Roque Santa Cruz and goalkeeper Shay Given.

Ajax goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg is not interested in leaving the Dutch side for Arsenal following their Champions League qualification.

West Ham are poised to make a move for Hamburg’s 29-year-old right-back Guy Demel.

Stoke and Portsmouth are lining up a swap deal with winger Liam Lawrence and striker Dave Kitson set to head for the south coast and Marc Wilson moving to Staffordshire.

Arsenal have made an inquiry for Lille goalkeeper Mickael Landreau – but have not given up on signing Fulham’s Mark Schwarzer.

AC Milan and Barcelona have agreed a deal to take striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic to the San Siro, according to reports in the Spanish media.

Scott Parker will sign a new five-year contract at West Ham – if he is still at Upton Park when the transfer window shuts. Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has had an £8m offer for the midfielder turned down recently.

Suspicions that Manchester City might be stockpiling players in order to prevent them signing for rivals could lead to the Premier League reviving attempts to outlaw player loans.

New Manchester United striker Bebe, who manager Alex Ferguson paid £7.4m for without seeing him play, was not included in the club’s recent 16-man reserve squad to face Manchester City – and was this week taken out of a training match because he was ‘off the pace’.

[picapp align=”right” wrap=”true” link=”term=lionel+messi&iid=9532443″ src=”http://view4.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9532443/sports-news-august-2010/sports-news-august-2010.jpg?size=500&imageId=9532443″ width=”234″ height=”272″ /] Barcelona forward Lionel Messi (right) wants Liverpool to be humane and let fellow Argentine Javier Mascherano leave Anfield for the Nou Camp.

Former Hull manager Phil Brown, who is currently out of work, has reiterated his desire to become England manager.

England manager Fabio Capello can forget about recalling Paul Scholes to the national squad. The veteran Manchester United midfielder has no intention of going back on his 2004 decision to retire from international football.

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez called Birmingham boss Alex McLeish “disrespectful” over his pursuit of Latics winger Charles N’Zogbia.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has reopened his feud with Stoke, accusing them of turning football into ‘rugby’.

Along with reacting angrily to the taunts of former Inter Milan boss Jose Mourinho – who said that Rafael Benitez was lucky to inherit such a good side – the club’s new manager has slammed a decision to allow television cameras into changing rooms at Serie A games, insisting it breaches a “priestly sanctuary”.

With the help of the legendary Pierluigi Collina, Uefa president Michel Platini has launched a new initiative that he claims will produce referees who are just as fit as footballers – and who will be able to provide a “99 to 100 per cent” guarantee of no more mistakes.

Former Manchester United and Aston Villa striker Dion Dublin has appeared at the Cambridge Rock Festival to promote his new musical invention. The Dube is a cube percussion instrument – a drum with knobs on – which comes in four sizes and can be customised in colour schemes and tones.

For full stories, head over to the BBC website.





26/08/2010 – Thursday Transfer Talk

26 08 2010

Inter Milan have made an official £20m bid for Liverpool’s Argentina midfielder Javier Mascherano, 26, who is also a target for Barcelona.

Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson has accused his predecessor Rafael Benitez of reneging on a written promise that he would not try to lure players away from Anfield to his new club Inter Milan – with the Spaniard tracking the Merseyside club’s Dutch forward Dirk Kuyt.

Chelsea have revived their interest in 18-year-old Brazilian Neymar a week after the teenager signed a five-year deal with Santos.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=carlos+salcido&iid=9140250″ src=”http://view1.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9140250/africa-salcido/africa-salcido.jpg?size=500&imageId=9140250″ width=”234″ height=”308″ /] Fulham are close to agreeing a £2.5m deal for Mexico defender Carlos Salcido (left), 30, from PSV Eindhoven – with Liverpool set to step up interest in the Cottagers’ left-back Paul Konchesky.

Bayern Munich’s Argentine utility player Martin Demichelis has turned down a £10m move to Chelsea, saying he wants to join Spanish side Sevilla.

Manchester City still hope to find Robinho a new club in the current transfer window, despite the Brazilian forward rejecting a move to Turkish side Fenerbache.

Bolton manager Owen Coyle wants to bring Manchester United’s England Under-21 midfielder Tom Cleverley to the Reebok.

West Ham are one of a number of clubs interested in bringing Juventus striker David Trezaguet to the Premier League, with Liverpool, West Brom and Aston Villa all interested in the 32-year-old Frenchman.

West Ham are expected to complete the signing of Inter Milan forward Victor Obinna, 23, on a free transfer on Thursday.

Blackburn are chasing £2m-rated Sweden Under-21 striker Denni Avdic, 21, who plays for Elfsborg.

Stoke are set to sign Portsmouth captain Marc Wilson for £3m, plus striker Dave Kitson, 30, after edging out West Bromwich Albion for the 23-year-old defender’s signature.

Wolves will re-sign Chelsea defender Michael Mancienne, 22, on a season-long loan deal for the third time.

Birmingham have made final bids of about £9m for Wigan’s left-sided Frenchman Charles N’Zogbia, 24, and £2m for Crystal Palace right-back Nathaniel Clyne, 19.

Newcastle are close to signing Guinea centre-back Kamil Zayatte, 25, from Hull for £1.6m.

[picapp align=”right” wrap=”true” link=”term=roque+santa+cruz&iid=9258565″ src=”http://view3.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9258565/2010-world-cup-south/2010-world-cup-south.jpg?size=500&imageId=9258565″ width=”234″ height=”351″ /] Newcastle are eyeing a double loan swoop for Manchester City defender Dedryck Boyata and striker Roque Santa Cruz (right).

Blackpool are ready to improve their £500,000 bid for Sheffield Wednesday striker Marcus Tudgay, 27.

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini is set to give Brazilian striker Jo a final chance to impress at Eastlands.

Manchester City midfielder James Milner wants Manchester United’s Paul Scholes to change his mind about international retirement and start playing for England again.

However, England manager Fabio Capello says he will not try to tempt the likes of midfielder Scholes, Manchester United defender Wes Brown, Blackburn goalkeeper Paul Robinson and Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher out of international retirement.

Former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson is interested in becoming the next Ukraine manager as the country prepares to co-host the 2012 European Championship with Poland.

Former Portsmouth owner Milan Mandaric could return to Fratton Park once he completes the sale of his current club Leicester.

Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has defended beleaguered England manager Fabio Capello, with the national side’s captain saying people are “jumping too far and too quick” on the Italian’s back.

For full stories, head over to the BBC website.





19/08/2010 – Thursday Transfer Talk

19 08 2010

Shay Given is set to walk out on Manchester City after finding out Joe Hart will keep his place in goal for the Europa League qualifier against FC Timisoara on Thursday night. Given is now mulling over possible  moves to Arsenal or Fulham.

Chelsea may miss out on the signature of 18-year-old Brazilian Naymar after the striker’s club Santos offered to make him their highest paid player and refused to accept any offers less than their valuation of £29m.

Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson has insisted that midfielder Javier Mascherano will not be offloaded for anything less than £25m to Inter Milan and has told the Argentine he should be prepared for an extended stay at Anfield.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=luis+fabiano&iid=9250309″ src=”http://view4.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9250309/sports-news-june-2010/sports-news-june-2010.jpg?size=500&imageId=9250309″ width=”234″ height=”312″ /] Tottenham will only make a £15m bid for Sevilla striker Luis Fabiano (left) if they qualify for the group stages of the Champions League. Even then the Brazilian’s £90,000-a-week wages may prove to be a stumbling block.

Chelsea are up against Ajax in the battle for the signature of 17-year-old Anderlecht striker Romelu Lukaku.

Ahsan Ali Syed wants to sign former England captain David Beckham, now at Los Angeles Galaxy, if the Indian businessman’s proposed £300m takeover bid of Blackburn is successful. Syed said: “I was 26 when I started following the Premier League. I liked Blackburn back then and also used to follow Manchester United’s fortunes because of David Beckham. If my finances allow and his intentions are positive then I would love to take Beckham.”

Manchester United may be about to test Deportivo La Coruna’s determination to keep hold of Mexico winger Andres Guardado with a £12m bid.

Arsenal are close to sealing a deal for Sevilla’s Sebastien Squillaci after the Spanish side withdrew the French defender from a Champions League qualifier.

Liverpool are weighing up an approach for Manchester City striker Roque Santa Cruz and may also include his Eastlands team-mate Wayne Bridge in the deal as they look to fill a left-back vacancy.

Rangers have secured the services of Slovakian World Cup star Vladimir Weiss, who had also been linked to rivals Celtic. The 20-year-old Manchester City winger has sealed a season-long deal at Ibrox.

Bolton left-back Jlloyd Samuel is a loan target for Middlesbrough.

[picapp align=”right” wrap=”true” link=”term=kenny+huang&iid=9492875″ src=”http://view1.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9492875/soccer-proposed-purchase/soccer-proposed-purchase.jpg?size=500&imageId=9492875″ width=”234″ height=”351″ /] Chinese businessman Kenny Huang (right) is becoming frustrated at his efforts to gain control of Liverpool. There are several parties interested in replacing Americans Tom Hicks and George Gillett but Huang is anxious to arrive and provide funds for new players before the end of the transfer window on 31 August.

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has hit back after Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson accused teams of spending money with “kamikaze effort”. City have spent £130m this summer but Mancini said: “It’s normal when you want to buy a good player that you have to spend money. It is not important for me [what Ferguson says]. I respect his opinion but I repeat that United, like City, have spent a lot of money in the past.”

Former West Ham chairman Eggert Magnusson is preparing for a shock return to football as the Icelandic businessman launches a rescue bid for struggling Sheffield Wednesday.

For full stories, head over to the BBC website.

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