Jumat, 31 Agustus 2012

Official: Malaga sign Onyewu on loan

Oguchi Onyewu, Malaga
Malaga have signed Oguchi Onyewu on a season-long loan from Sporting Lisbon with a view to a permanent transfer.

The USA international can play in several positions but thrives in a central defensive role and will be added to the ranks already at coach Manuel Pellegrini's disposal.

The capture of Onyewu rounds off a busy day at La Rosaleda, as South American strikers Javier Saviola and Roque Santa Cruz were brought in on deadline day to help fill the void left by Jose Rondon's departure.

Onyewu is a Belgian passport holder from his time at Standard Liege, and thus does not infringe upon Malaga's non-EU allowance.

Official: Manchester City complete signing of Javi Garcia from Benfica

Javi Garcia, Benfica
Manchester City have officially completed the signing of midfielder Javi Garcia from Benfica.

Goal.com understands the fee for the Spaniard is worth a total of 18 million, an initial fee of 15.5m plus an additional 2.5m in potential add-ons.

The swoop for Garcia makes it a successful transfer deadline day for Roberto Mancini's side, who have also signed Scott Sinclair, Maicon, Matija Nastasic and Richard Wright.

More to follow.

BREAKING NEWS: Everton sign Bryan Oviedo from FC Copenhagen

Champions League : Dimitri Payet vs Bryan Oviedo (Lille OSC vs FC Copenhagen)
Everton have clinched the signing of defender Bryan Oviedo from Danish side FC Copenhagen on a four-year-deal.

The versatile Costa Rican has been linked with a variety of clubs over the summer, but has agreed to move to Goodision Park for a fee believed to be in the region of 5million.

Oviedo can play on at left back and on the left side of midfield, and his signing will give the Toffees added depth as they look to build on last season's impressive 7th placed finish.

The 22-year-old has earned 13 international caps for Costa Rica, and has appeared in the Champions League in addition to winning a Danish league title and two Danish Cups during his time in Scandinavia.

However, despite enjoying much success in the Danish captial, Oviedo admitted that is eager to enhance his career in the Premier League.

He told Everton's official website: "I am so very happy. This is a very good o pportunity for me.

"I know a lot about Everton. I watch Everton games and Premier League games on the TV and it is a very good league.

"The last two or three days have been very stressful and tiring but I am so happy now. I am feeling good and right now everything is positive."

The capture of Oviedo could well be David Moyes' last foray into the transfer market, the Toffees have also added Kevin Mirallas, Steven Pienaar and Steven Naismith so far this summer, but have also lost Jack Rodwell and Tim Cahill to Manchester City and New York Red Bulls respectively.

Tottenham agree 15 million Lloris fee with Lyon

Euro 2012 : Hugo Lloris (France vs England)
By Greg Stobart

Tottenhamhave agreed a fee worth around 15 million withLyon for goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

The France captain, who has been targeted by Spurs throughout the summer transfer window, is expected to complete a medical with the north London club on Friday having already agreed personal terms.

Reports in France suggest Spurs will pay an initial 12m for Lloris, with the rest of the fee dependent on performance-related add-ons, while Lyon will also have to give 25 per cent of the fee to Nice.

Lyon released a statement on Thursday night claiming they had failed to agree a fee with Spurs - but the Londoners were always confident of signing Lloris today.

Lloris, 25, will replace 41-year-old Brad Friedel has Andre Villas-Boas' No.1 but he will not join in time to be included in the squad to face Norwich at White Hart Lane on Saturday.

Spurs first made an approach to Lyon at the start of the summer but revived the deal in the final week of the transfer window following Luka Modrics 42m switch to Real Madrid.

Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy also felt a deadline day deal would take advantage of Lyons uncertain financial position.

Lloris move to Spurs would be the latest on an exceptionally busy day at White Hart Lane.

Goal.com broke the news that the Londoners have agreed a 27m fee with Porto for playmaker Joao Moutinho, while they have also tried to hijack Fulhams move for Manchester United striker Dimitar Berbatov.

Moutinhos arrival has paved the way for Rafael Van der Vaart to complete a 13m return to Hamburg.

Danny Rose has joined Sunderland on loan and Giovani dos Santos has signed for Mallorca, but central defender Michael Dawson will stay at Spurs following a knee injury to Younes Kaboul that will keep him out for four months.

Manchester City aim to rush through deals for Garcia, Maicon, Sinclair & Nastasic

Javi Garcia, Benfica
Manchester City hope to kick-off a big-money deadline day recruitment drive with the signing of Benfica midfielder Javi Garcia.

The reigning Premier League champions are attempting to force through a 25 million move for the highly-rated 25-year-old, though the Portuguese giants are believed to want 30m for his services.

City's interest in the Spaniard has come about as a result of their recent failure to capture Daniele De Rossi from Roma and they also require cover in the middle following the sale of Nigel de Jong to Milan.

Any move would be part of a busy final day of the transfer window for Roberto Mancini, who is also expected to tie up deals for Inter right-back Maicon, Swansea winger Scott Sinclair and Fiorentina defender Matija Nastasic.

Kamis, 30 Agustus 2012

Rodgers eyeing deadline-day arrivals at Liverpool

UEFA Europa League Play-off Round, Liverpool v Hearts, Steven Gerrard, Marius Zaliukas
Liverpool managerBrendan Rodgers confirmed that he is eyeing deadline-day signings after his side secured their place in the group stage of the Europa League with a 2-1 aggregate win over Hearts.

Rodgers also confirmed that he had allowed Andy Carroll to join West Ham on loan in an attempt to secure regular football for the striker but kept tight-lipped over the futures of Charlie Adam and Jay Spearing.

The Ulsterman revealed that the Reds would be in the market to sign additional players before the transfer window shuts on Friday evening.

He told ESPN: "Andy leaving was on the understanding that he would go out and get games, as he would not get many here. He is going to West Ham to get games, and we have the opportunity to get another player tomorrow.

"Theres been lots of movement, so well see what happens, and we have a number of targets.

"Theres been nothing as yet [on Spearing or Adam], as we wanted to concentrate purely on the game. Now the game is done, we will get an update on that."

A late Luis Suarez strike saved Rodgers' side from going into extra-time after David Templeton handed the visitors the lead in the 85th minute following a mistake from Pepe Reina.

Despite the nervy ending at Anfield, Rodgers says that he was never worried about his side's progression after what he described as an "excellent" performance."I felt reasonably comfortable throughout. Hearts worked hard, but Jose Reinas goal was never under threat. Once the goal went in, we had to respond, and we did.

He added: "We didnt lose, which is important. It was off the back of an exceptional performance, and the boys have been excellent, so I have no complaints there. It was important to keep the faith and keep passing. Were delighted to be through, its a job well done."

Adam Morgan made his first start for the Reds in the ma tch, and Rodgers revealed he will be looking to give more young players a chance in the team while he is in charge.

He said: "Hes a local boy, from Liverpool, and its important for me to give local boys who came through the ranks a chance.

"It was important for him to get his first start, and its important for me to give local boys a chance, and its something Ill look to do."

De Jong arrives in Italy ahead of AC Milan move

Nigel De Jong - Manchester City
By Wayne Veysey Chief Correspondent

Manchester City midfielder Nigel de Jong has arrived in Italy ahead of his proposed move to AC Milan.

The Dutchman landed in Milan on Thursday evening to finalise terms with the Rossoneri.

Goal.com revealed last week that Milan had stolen a march on their city rivals Inter in the race to sign 8 million-rated De Jong.

Talks over a move are at an advanced stage with the midfielder, who is refusing to sign a new deal with the Premier League champions.

De Jong is surplus to requirements at Etihad Stadium and has been targeted by the two Italian clubs but Milan are set to secure the 27-year-old's signature in the next 24 hours.

De Jong, who joined City from Hamburg for 18m in January 2009, has only one year remaining on his contract in Manchester and is keen to move on.

He lost his regular starting place to Gareth Barry last season and has be en moved even further down the pecking order by the arrival of Jack Rodwell despite being in the starting XI against Liverpool last Sunday.

Roberto Mancini has been keen to strengthen his central midfield during this transfer window but missed out on long-term target Daniel De Rossi after the Roma man rejected City's advances, as was exclusively revealed by Goal.com at the start of last week.

City's failure to secure the signature of either De Rossi, or their other principal central midfield Javi Martinez, who has joined Bayern Munich, has had no impact on De Jongs future at the club.

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BREAKING NEWS: Defoe signs new Tottenham deal

EPL,Jermain Defoe,Tottenham Hotspur v Norwich City
Tottenham striker Jermain Defoe has committed his future to Spurs by signing a new three-year contract with the club.

The news all but confirms the England striker will be staying with Andre Villas-Boas' side after being linked with a move away this summer.

Defoe is delighted to have agreed terms on a new contract to stay at Spurs for the forseeable future and is also looking forward to joining up with the England squad ahead of their World Cup qualifying games against Moldova and Ukraine.

He said on his Twitter page: "Fantastic week signed my new contract at spurs & meeting up with England on Monday for 2 important games goalsgoalsgoals."

The 29-year-old is currently in his second spell at Tottenham after rejoining the club from Portsmouth in 2009 and despite not being first-choice last season he still managed to bag 17 goals.

He's has already found the target this campaign scoring against Newcastle on the op ening day of the season as well as notching a goal for the Three Lions in their friendly victory over Italy.

Beckenbauer unfazed by Javi Martinez's 40m transfer fee

Franz Beckenbauer - Javi Martínez
West Germany legend Franz Beckenbauer is not too worried about Bayern Munich's big investment to lure Javi Martinez away from Athletic Bilbao.

The Spain international signed a five-year deal with the Bundesliga giants on Wednesday to complete his 40 million move, despite the likes of Steffen Effenberg to question whether the deal represents value for money.

However, the 66-year-old feels his former club are better off spending cash to improve their squad rather than leave it in a bank account.

"Why would you leave the money on the fixed deposit account, since you hardly get any interest for it anyway," Beckenbauer was quoted as saying by Bild.

"I am very curious about this purchase. It used to be that you only paid so much money for a striker, while defensive players were brought up from the youth system.Times have changed."

Beckenbauer had previously admitted that he had never heard of the 23-year-old, w ho can play in either midfield or defence.

Inter have done great in the transfer market, says Stramaccioni

Andrea Stramaccioni - FC Internazionale
Andrea Stramaccioni has voiced his delight with Inter's transfer activity so far this summer.

The Nerazzurri have secured the services of players such as Samir Handanovic, Matias Silvestre, Walter Gargano, Antonio Cassano and Alvaro Pereira in the past few months, and their head coach has stressed all the new arrivals fit in perfectly.

"The club have done good work in the transfer market, bringing in good, hungry players," Stramaccioni stated at a press conference.

"These players fit in with my ideas. The proof is that Gargano and Cassano, for example, seemed to be comfortable with their roles after just two training sessions.

"Will we be making other moves? I cannot foresee any big changes, but we need to clarify certain players' futures.

"We have tried to put together a squad where we have two players for every role, the only question mark surrounds the right-back position, but we are helped there by t he captain's versatility."

Inter are currently preparing for Thursday's second leg of their Europa League play-off against Vaslui.

Rabu, 29 Agustus 2012

Del Piero mulling over Sydney FC deal after snubbing Sion bid

Alessandro Del Piero - Juventus
Sydney FC expect to know within 48 hours whether Alessandro Del Piero will accept their contract offer, with the former Juventus striker having reportedly rejected a move to Swiss club Sion.

The A-League club's CEO Tony Pignata had two video conferences with Del Piero's representatives on Wednesday, lasting around two hours, and he has reportedly offered the 37-year-old a deal worth $2 million (1.6m) to join Sydney FC.

Del Piero had been involved in negotiations with FC Sion earlier this week but has reportedly rejected a move to the Swiss Super League club, putting Sydney FC in a much better position to lure the Italian striker to Australia.

"We spoke about football, as well as the Sydney lifestyle and the ability for him to leave a lasting legacy in the game," Pignata said on Thursday.

"We presented him with what we think is a good package and we should get an answer within 48 hours."

Sydney FC have only come into the market for Del Piero after former marquee player Nicky Carle was allowed to leave the club on loan to play in the United Arab Emirates with Baniyas.

That move opened up a marquee spot, which would allow Sydney FC to pay Del Piero outside their salary cap. Pignata moved quickly, confirming the club's interest in the veteran forward on Wednesday.

Del Piero would arguably become the highest-profile marquee the A-League has ever had, surpassing Dwight Yorke, Robbie Fowler and Harry Kewell.

"Alessandro Del Piero is one of the true legends of football and there is no doubt that if he was to come to Sydney FC it would be huge, not only for our club and the Sydney football community, but for the whole A-League," Pignata said.

Even though Del Piero has seemingly rejected Sion, Sydney FC still have rivals for his signature, with Tottenham Hotspur and Celtic both having offered him contracts, according to the Italian me dia.

Del Piero played 513 league games for Juventus in 19 seasons with the Serie A club, scoring 208 goals. He also scored 27 times in 91 appearances with the Italian national team.

Official: Julio Cesar joins QPR on four-year deal

Julio Cesar - Inter
QPR have completed the signing of Inter goalkeeper Julio Cesar, with the Brazilian signing a four-year deal at Loftus Road.

Manager Mark Hughes had been keen to land the 32-year-old following the Rs shaky start to the new campaign, which saw them fall to a 5-0 defeat at the hands of Swansea City on the opening day of the season.

Cesar has committed his future to QPR until 2016, and is likely to make his debut for the club against Chelsea after the upcoming international break.

Its fantastic that weve been able to attract a keeper of such outstanding ability to the club, the QPR boss told the club's official website

When the opportunity to sign a player of his quality presents itself, you have to act quickly and weve managed to get the deal done.

It was always my intention to bring two goalkeepers to the club this summer and now weve got fantastic competition in that department."

Hughes added: Hes an outstanding individual, as well as being an outstanding player.

Not only will we benefit from his ability, but well also benefit from his experience and winning mentality."

Cesar insisted the vision presented to him by both Hughes and club owner Tony Fernandes ensured he had no concerns about joining the west London outfit.

Im so happy and excited to be here," Cesar said.

The ambition of this club was presented to me by the chairman and the coach and I couldnt have been more impressed.

The desire to achieve things at this club is clear for everyone to see and I wanted to be part of that. I have come here to compete for the shirt and give my all.

He continued: The English Premier League is the best division in the world.

Everyone wants to play here and I am no different. Now I just want to give my all to the club and show the fans what I am capable of.

This is a really exciting move for me and I cant wait to get going.

Manchester City closing in on deal for Nastasic

Matija Nastasic - Fiorentina (Getty Images)

Manchester City are in the final stages of agreeing a deal to sign teenage defender Matija Nastasic from Fiorentina, Goal.com has learned.

The 19-year-old Serbia international is expected to move to the Etihad Stadium after impressing in his debut season in Serie A, with manager Roberto Mancini said to be a long-term admirer of the former Partizan Belgrade player.

City are believed to have offered around 11m (9m) and Stefan Savic for Nastasic, although Fiorentina are hoping for another 6.3 (5m) in add-ons.

A deal nonetheless appears to be imminent and sources expect it to be announced in the next 24 hours.

Mancini has been looking for more central defensive cover after Montenegro international Savic failed to adapt to the Premier League in his debut season.

Nastasic made 27 appearanc es for Fiorentina last season after arriving from Partizan and was spotted by City scouts watching Stevan Jovetic, as revealed by Goal.com last week.

But while the deal for the 22-year-old playmaker appears to have stalled, Nastasic should become only the second new signing for the Premier League champions after the arrival of Jack Rodwell earlier this month.

Savic could depart the club after arriving for 7.6m (6m) last July and having made only 11 Premier League appearances for City.

Mourinho: Carvalho's career is over if he stays at Real Madrid

Ricardo Carvalho - Real Madrid (Getty Images)
Jose Mourinho has insisted that Ricardo Carvalho does not have a future at Real Madrid, and has urged his compatriot to move on.

The centre-back moved to the Santiago Bernabeu from Chelsea in the summer of 2010 and quickly became an important first team member.

However, the 34-year-old lost his starting berth amid a string of injuries last season, and Mourinho is eager to offload Carvalho this summer.

"Ricardo is not part of our plans for the season," Mourinho stated at a press conference.

"It is up to him whether he wants to continue playing football or stay at Real Madrid and meet his contractual obligations and practically end his sporting career.

"A lot of teams are interested in Ricardo. He is a quality player and there is interest in him. There are various teams from different leagues who have shown an interest in him."

Carvalho, who has recently been linked with a move to QPR, has a contract wi th Madrid until June 2013.

Selasa, 28 Agustus 2012

Barton move to Marseille still possible, confirms Hughes

EPL: Joey Barton - Mike Dean, Manchester City v QPR

QPR manager Mark Hughes has confirmed that Joey Bartons proposed move to Marseille could yet go ahead, with further talks scheduled between the clubs.

The midfielder had been rumoured to be closing in on a loan move to Ligue 1 after falling out of Hughes' plans due to the 12-match ban he is currently serving for violent conduct and following the Welshman's busy summer in the transfer market.

And, despite the transfer having seemingly fallen through earlier in the week, Hughes admitted discussions over the Huyton-born midfielder's future will resume.

"There may be some movement in that regard," he told Sky Sports.

"I think there is further discussions that will be made, possibly his people and representatives of our club will get over to France and have discussions and see where we go with it.

"But it's not dead yet. I think at one point everyone thought it was. But it has resurfaced so we will investigate to its c onclusion."

Barton's ban stems from his attack on Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero on the final day of last season, an incident which resulted in him losing the club captaincy.

Espanyol land Longo on season long loan deal from Inter

Samuele Longo - Espanyol
Espanyol have completed the signing of striker Samuele Longo on a season-long loan deal from Inter.

The 20-year-old passed a medical on Tuesday and will be handed the No.12. jersey, having been given permission to gain first-team experience in La Liga.

Ater making his move, Longo revealed that Philippe Coutinho played a major role in his switch, as the Brazilian talked highly of Mauricio Pochettino's side following a successful loan spell at the club last term.

"I am very happy and cannot wait to start my new adventure with Espanyol," enthused Longo.

"Coutinho told me so many positive things about the club and I'm happy to be here."

Nani demands showdown talks over Manchester United future

EPL - Queens Park Rangers v Manchester United, Nani
By Wayne Veysey Chief Correspondent

Nani will demand showdown talks with Manchester United as doubts grow over his future at the club.

The Portugese winger was dropped from the 18-man United squad against Fulham last Saturday after failing to shine in their Premier League opener against Everton.

Zenit St Petersburg have gone public with their desire to capture 31 million(25m)-rated Nani, who is concerned he has slipped down the Old Trafford pecking order because of the growing competition for wide roles at the club.

However, the 25-year-old, who has less than two years remaining on his contract, is adamant he will not be forced out the club and is ready to ask for formal talks to determine where he stands.

Sources have told Goal.com that Nani will demand a 6.2m (5m) pay-off to quit the club before the end of the transfer window on Friday.

Despite denials from Old Trafford that Nani will be sold, it is understood that Sir Alex Ferguson is giving serious consideration to cashing in on the 25-year-old.

Goal.com revealed last week that Manchester City legend Georgi Kinkladze is a central figure in Zenits bid to prise Nani from Old Trafford.

Kinkladze, who retains hero status among City supporters for his performances during a three-year spell in the mid-1990s when the club lived in the shadow of their wealthier and more glamorous neighbours, is now a Moscow-based football agent and has close connections to Russias nouveau riche clubs.

Zenit went public with their desire to sign Nani 10 days ago, with manager Luciano Spalletti revealing that contact has been made with United over the Portugese winger.

The winners of two consecutive Russian league titles already boast Nanis national team colleague Bruno Alves in their ranks and have the ambition and resources to make an impact in the Ch ampions League.

Ferguson has strengthened his attacking options by signing Robin van Persie, Shinji Kagawa and Nick Powell this summer, which could be ominous in the long-term for Nani or Ashley Young.

Although Nani started the 1-0 defeat to Everton eight days ago, it was unlikely he would have done so had a defensive crisis not forced Antonio Valencia to be deployed at right-back. He was overlooked completely for the 3-2 win over Fulham despite being fully fit.

Although a key creator and goalscorer for United in the three seasons that followed Cristiano Ronaldos departure to Real Madrid, Nani has frustrated Ferguson with his inconsistency.

A stalemate in talks over a new contract has yet to be resolved, which is a growing concern at Old Trafford given that he has entered the final two years of his current deal.

Spalletti has spelled out his interest in Nani as well as Porto winger Hulk and Barcelona attacker Ibrahim Afe llay.

Are we interested in Hulk and Nani? Yes we are, Spalletti said. Everything's going to depend on how much they cost.

There are three more players who we're holding negotiations with besides Nani and Hulk, but I won't name them. But if you want one more name, it's Afellay.

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AC Milan closing in on Bojan Krkic, confirms Galliani

Bojan Krkic - Roma
Adriano Galliani is confident that AC Milan will succeed in their attempts to lure Bojan Krkic away from Roma in the coming hours.

The Rossoneri are eager to add some more depth to their attack, and head coach Massimiliano Allegri sees the 22-year-old Spaniard as the ideal signing.

Galliani met with Roma director Walter Sabatini on Tuesday morning to discuss a potential deal, and the Milan supremo believes the deal could be done by the end of the day.

"We are moving in the right direction to sign Bojan. We are confident that we can wrap up the deal today," Galliani told reporters.

Bojan came through the ranks of the Barcelona youth academy, but was sold to Roma for a fee of 12 million in the summer of 2011 after he failed to secure regular first team football at Camp Nou.

Barca have an obligatory clause to repurchase the attacker for 13m at the end of the 2012-13 campaign, but it's not yet know how his im minent move to Milan will affect this clause.

Bayern target Martinez delighted to be subject of German attention

Javi Martinez, Athletic Bilbao
Javi Martinez has admitted that he is enjoying basking in the attention of Bayern Munich's fans, as the Bundesliga giants prepare to tie up a deal with Athletic Bilbao for his signature.

The Euro 2012 winner has been the subject of transfer speculation linking him with a 40 million move to the Bundesliga runners-up, although the stop-start nature of the switch has led to recent pessimism whether a transfer can occur before Friday's deadlne.

Nevertheless, the 23-year-old Spain international insists that despite being flattered by the rumours, he remains unconcerned, and is just going about his daily routines as per usual.

"I know the German press and fans are very interested in who I am," Martinez enthused. "It's truly great to have so much interest from Germany."

"I cant say much else [about a transfer] though. Im just relaxed and training training, trying to stay in shape and wait for a decision. I cannot do more than that.

The versatile midfielder has amassed over 200 Primera Division appearances for Los Leones, reaching the Europa League final last season, only to see his side capitulate 3-0 to Spanish rivals Atletico Madrid.

Coach Marcelo Bielsa has opted to leave both Martinez and Juventus transfer target Fernando Llorente out of his squads for recent Liga matches.

Senin, 27 Agustus 2012

Bojan is a player Allegri really likes, reveals Galliani

Bojan Krkic (Roma)
AC Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani has fueled speculation that the club could soon make a bid for Bojan Krkic after admitting coach Massimiliano Allegri was keeping an eye out for the Roma forward.

This claim comes on the back of the discovery that a deal to bring former Rossoneri talisman Kaka back to Serie A would prove financially impossible, just the latest twist in a long-running saga.

The quest to sign a high-profie replacement in light of Zlatan Ibrahimovic's and Thiago Silva's departures has now led Galliani to keep an eye on Bojan, who endured a difficult first campaign at the Olimpico following his 12 million loan arrival from Barcelona.

"Bojan is a player liked by Allegri," Galliani confirmed to Sky Sport 24 after revealing a return for Kaka was not plausible.

It remains unclear whether Milan will win the race to sign the Catalan youngster however, with Liga outfit M alaga touted as the favourites to secure the services of the striker.

With that in mind, Galliani alluded to a deal bringing in-demand Caen prospect M'Baye Niang to Milan, following fruitful talks with the 17-year-old's agent, Oscar Damiani.

"For the moment, Niang is a Caen player, but we'll see," the official continued. "I'm hopeful for a positive outcome."

"The boy seems a good player, which explains why we have been watching him for several years. If we sign him, he'll go into the first team, despite his tender age."

Baup: M'Bia could switch Marseille for Premier League soon

Ligue 1 : Stephane M'Bia
Marseille boss Elie Baup has revealed Stephane M'Bia's proposed move to the Premier League could progress during the coming week.

The French outfit's president, Vincent Labrune, told Canal+ on Sunday that the defender has played his last game for the club, adding that the English top-flight is his likely destination.

The club's manager has re-enforced those claims, stating that the player no longer wants to play for Les Phoceens, while also suggesting a move could be closer by the end of the week.

"Things could progress during the week for M'bia." The Marseille boss told RMC. "It's clear for me and for him: he's shown his desire to leave.

"He is still available all the same because he had a good game at Montpellier. As long as he's here, he needs to do his best.

"But we need to find the best solution for the club."

The Cameroon international has been linked with QPR this summer, wit h Mark Hughes already having brought in a number of new faces as he aims to turn the London club's fortunes around after they narrowly avoided relegation last term.

Speculation also remains over Rangers' midfielder Joey Barton's potential loan move to the Ligue 1 side, which may be part of any transfer.

If any deal was to be done, M'Bia would be the second high-profile defender to leave the club for the Premier League this summer, with Cesar Azpilicueta's move to Chelsea being officially confirmed on Friday.

Modric completes Real Madrid move from Tottenham

luka modric bye
Real Madrid have completed the signing of Tottenham midfielder Luka Modric for a fee of 33.2 million, the Spanish giants have confirmed.

Modric arrives on a five-year deal, and will wear the No.19 shirt at Santiago Bernabeu, as the No.14 he wore at Spurs is already taken by Xabi Alonso.

The Croatian international played no part in the north Londoners' Premier League campaign this year as the two clubs finalised negotiations for the deal, which also includes a long-term 'footballing partnership'.

"I'm very happy," he told reporters. "It's an honour to be at the biggest club in the world. I want to start training and playing for Real Madrid.

"I look forward to playing with the team. This is my biggest challenge as a footballer and I am sure that I will accomplish my objectives.

"My challenge is to earn a place in the team, and for that you must work hard. It's going to be difficult, but I' m ready. My challenge is to win titles and trophies with Real Madrid.

"I have trained, I have worked hard and I have played 25 minutes with Croatia. I hope that I only need a couple of games to be fit and to reach the highest level.

"I have everything that I want. Now i just want to enjoy my football, improve my qualities and help the team win everything.

"I'm grateful to Tottenham. I spent four fantastic years there. There is no bitterness, just gratitude."

Official: Olympique Lyonnais sign Monzon

Luciano Monzon - Nice
Olympique Lyonnais have announced on their official website that they have completed the transfer of Fabain Luciano Monzon from Nice for an initial fee of 3 million, with the transfer fee potentially rising to 4m dependent on clauses.

The Ligue 1 giants were in the market for a new left-back following the departure of Aly Cissokho to Valencia last week, and they have now snapped up the Argentina international as his replacement.

Monzon came through the ranks of the Boca Juniors youth academy and also wore the jersey of Betis before joining Nice in the summer of 2011.

The 25-year-old has since developed into a key player at the French side, thus earning himself a transfer to Les Gones. Monzon has signed a four-year deal with his new club.

Meanwhile, former France Under-21 international Jeremy Pied has moved in the opposite direction for 3m.

The attacker was no longer needed at Lyon after failing to sec ure regular first-team action at his boyhood club, and has inked a deal until June 2016 with Nice.

Real Madrid & Tottenham finally agree 33m Modric deal

luka modric bye
By Greg Stobart

Luka Modricis set to undergo a medical withReal Madrid on Monday after the Spanish giants finally agreed a 33 million deal withTottenham over the weekend, Goal.com can confirm.

After a summer of protracted negotiations, Spurs chairman Daniel Levy lowered his asking price as the two clubs settled on a deal worth 42 million (33.2m) including add-ons for the playmaker.

Spurs manager Andre Villas-Boas priority will now be to find a direct replacement for Modric, with first choice Joao Moutinho of Porto still deemed too expensive by the London club. A move for Fulham midfielder Moussa Dembele is being considered after his man-of-the-match display against Manchester United on Saturday.

Modric, 26, agreed a contract worth 120,000-a-week with Real Madrid before Euro 2012 and the Croat has been training on his own over the summer in preparation for a move to the Bernabeu.

He did not figure in any of Tottenhams pre-season preparations and was not involved in the clubs first two Premier League matches after demanding a transfer to Real earlier in the summer.

He failed to report on time for pre-season training and refused to go on the north Londoners pre-season tour to the United States.

This came 12 months after Modric asked for a move from White Hart Lane to Chelsea, which Levy refused to sanction despite a 40m bid before the end of the August 2011 window.

Modric, who cost Spurs 16.5m when he signed from Dinamo Zagreb in 2008, refused to entertain the prospect of a big-money transfer to any club other than Real Madrid, despite interest from Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain.

And as the switched neared on Friday, Modric is understood to have said his goodbyes to staff and team-mates at Tottenhams training base in Chigwell.

Follow Greg Stobart on

Minggu, 26 Agustus 2012

Barton: I want to leave QPR for Marseille, enough is enough

EPL - Queens Park Rangers v Newcastle United, Joey Barton
QPR midfielder Joey Barton is hoping to leave the Premier League for French side Marseille this week, stating 'enough is enough' and that his heart is 'already in the Velodrome'.

Barton is still serving a suspension following his antics on the final day of the 2011-12 season where he was sent off against Manchester City - with 10 games of 12 still to go before he can play in England.

And while he says there are other clubs interested in taking him, Marseille are the only one that interests him, stating he is hoping to seal a move there this week.

"Marseille won again as well. Allez les Marseillais. Maybe I'll see you all this week?" Barton stated on Twitter.

"I am hopeful that things will be sorted out soon. Other clubs are in but I only want to play in Marseille. This is the place for me.

"Hopefully, QPR and Marseille can finalise the deal in the next few days. My heart is already in the Vlodrome."

Bar ton continued to tweet on the subject, stating that Mark Hughes doesn't see a future for the midfielder at the club and though he respects his manager's point of view, 'enough is enough' for his time at the club.

He added: "Not going to cry about it. Maybe it's just time to move on. I enjoyed parts of last season and I believe I am more than capable of playing this year. But the manager doesn't. Such is life.

"I have no problem with this as its my fault I am banned for 12(10 now) games. When a person [makes] a decision he has to stand by that. I respect Hughes for this. I don't agree but I accept his decision.

"I am not the type of player to sit on the sidelines and take the cash. It's not me. I could do that for the next 3 years but it's not me. I want to play football.

"Hopefully the QPR fans will accept that. I offered to resign from the club/contract when I got my ban. @tonyfernandes [and] @Amit_Bhatia99 will testify that I am telling the truth.

"I accepted my punishment from the FA and the club for my behaviour against Man City like a man.

"I could of appealed as is my right. I choose not to out of respect. But when I returned to the club. I am forced to train away from the 1st team. I am stripped of the captaincy. Then, made to train at 3pm. Then, I am hawked around on loan.

"Then, I have my shirt number taken without any notice. Then, I read I wouldn't of been signed had the current regime been in place.

"I accepted all this. I never once spoke out of turn or angrily to anybody. I am a man. I can only take so much. I want to leave.

"I hope to move on with my career, with my life. If that is in France, then so be it. I don't want to be disrespectful to QPR but enough is enough.

"Good night people, I've said enough for today. I'll get in trouble. No doubt. But this is how it is. This if life."

Wenger anticipates new Arsenal signing before end of transfer window

EPL,Arsene Wenger,Stoke City v Arsenal
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that he expects to add to his squad before the end of the summer transfer window.

The Gunners failed to find the net for the second week running in the Premier League as they were held to a 0-0 draw against Stoke City.

The French manager admitted that he is open to the idea of boosting his ranks following the departure of Robin van Persie, but indicated that he is unlikely to move for a defensive midfielder despite the sale of Alex Song.

"I'm pleased with what I have but yes, I anticipate doing something still, we're still in the market," Wenger told Sky Sports. "Defensive midfielders we have.

"I don't know yet, it depends on the quality of players that are available, it's not necessity. If we find someone who can strengthen our squad with the quality that we want we'll do it in any position."

Wenger admitted his frustration at his side's failure to make their po ssession count at the Britannia Stadium but pointed out that the problem may have something to do with the amount of new players in his team.

"Overall I feel we had a solid performance, we were not in trouble defensively," he claimed. "We created some chances that we couldn't take, at the moment we're not taking our chances.

"But it was a solid game with a dominant spirit and overall I believe there are a lot positives but the negatives are that we couldn't score, now for two games.

"I believe we can't because we have a lot of new players, trying to find each other in the final third and it might take a little bit more time.

"Our overall organisational and technical effort was good. We missed the beat in the final third, in the adjustment of our passing and the spontaneous way to take our chances. It's not completely automatic and we still have some work but there are a lot of positives.

"We did some homework and overal l we did very well. Diaby had a good protecting role in midfield, he did that very well. Our back four did well, our keeper did well although we did have worries of what they could do to us, they're a handful for anybody that comes here."

Pressure has been placed on new acquisition Olivier Giroud, who is yet to find the target for the Gunners and started following the sale of Van Persie, but Wenger believes that the Frenchman will get off the mark before long.

"I believe he tried, he hit it quite well," Wenger said of the striker's late chance from distance. "It was a good moment to win this game 1-0 that I think we deserved but overall it's quite positive.

"Of course, the longer it lasts the more doubt creeps in to the head of the striker but I think it will come."

Juventus not interested in Barcelona forward Villa, says Marotta

David Villa - FC Barcelona
Juventus chief Giuseppe Marotta has denied that the club have approached Barcelona over forward David Villa.

Reports in Spain had suggested that a move could be in the offing, but this has now been refuted by the 57-year-old executive.

The Old Lady are looking to sign a high-profile striker this summer, and have been linked with Robin van Persie, Edin Dzeko and Fernando Llorente at various times. However, 30-year-old Villa is not on their list of targets.

"I can rule out any interest or negotiations for David Villa," Marotta is quoted as saying by Mundo Deportivo.

"He is a great player, but not the type we are looking for. We want a striker in the style of Edinson Cavani or Llorente, who are our primary targets along with Edin Dzeko."

With time running out in the transfer window, Juve will no doubt be concentrating their efforts on recruiting a new goalscorer to aid their quest for back-to-back Serie A titles.

Martinez hoping for swift conclusion to Bayern saga

Javi Martinez, Athletic Bilbao
Athletic Bilbao midfielder Javi Martinez has admitted that he wants his future resolved as soon as possible amid continued speculation over a move to Bayern Munich.

The Spain international has been linked with a switch to the Allianz Arena throughout the summer as the Bavarians look to bolster their options in the centre of the park.

Bayern have announced their intention to meet his 40 million buy-out clause, only to be left by frustrated by the Basque club's approach, but the player is still hoping that a conclusion will be reached soon.

"I'm waiting and hoping for a fast decision," he told Bild Am Sonntag.

"I cannot say much about the situation. I am relaxed, exercising, keeping fit and I am waiting for a decision to be made. There is not much more that I can do.

"I have noticed that German newspapers are full of stuff about me and my life. It is madness. It is a great feeling that people in Germany ar e interested in me."

Former Bayern midfielder Stefan Effenburg has expressed his reservations over the club paying such a hefty fee for the 23-year-old, but the player is not worried about the criticism.

"It is completely normal for former star players to make comments about the club itself. That is not a problem and is completely fine. I understand it."

Bayern Munich have already added the likes of Xherdan Shaqiri, Mario Mandzukic, Claudio Pizarro and Dante to their squad this summer as they look to end their two-year Bundesliga drought.

Sabtu, 25 Agustus 2012

Wigan players ready to fill void left by Moses, says Martinez

Wigan Athletic manager Roberto Martinez

Roberto Martinez feels that his Wigan players showed their intention to fill the void left by Victor Moses in their 2-0 win over Southampton.

Despite selling the young attacker - one of the key personnel in the Latics successfully beating the drop last season - to Chelsea, the club still managed to record a win at St Mary's with goals from Franco Di Santo and Arouna Kone.

Martinez feels that the other members of his squad are now ready to step up, with the extra competitive edge aiding the team.

"I think the whole team took responsibility after losing Victor Moses. He leaves with our blessing. He has done everything he could to help our football club and with that he helped his career," the Spaniard told Sky Sports.

"He arrived aged 19 and you get really attached to him, but I think this group of players are desperate to fulfil his responsibility and his boots.

"We've got three games in this busy week. You're going to see a lot of players given an opportunity to show what they can do and that is a competitive edge we have in this group."

Martinez was also delighted with his side's performance in a tough atmosphere as Southampton hosted their first Premier League game in seven years in front of a near-capacity crowd.

He added: "I think to say that I am pleased would be an understatement. I am very, very satisfied because we knew how difficult it would be and I thought the first half-an-hour showed that.

"We started to keep the ball well, we opened up a few good opportunities and then to score two goals from open play away from home is always tremendous."

Drenthe agrees Besiktas switch - report

Royston Drenthe, Everton
Royston Drenthe appears set to continue his playing career in Turkey, as reports in Turkey claim the winger has agreed terms with Besiktas.

According to NTVspor, the 25-year-old, who was released by Real Madrid earlier in the summer, will put pen to paper on a four-year contract with the Super Lig outfit.

Drenthe moved to the Santiago Bernabeu from Feyenoord in 2007 after playing a starring role in the Netherlands' successful European Under-21 Championship campaign.

However, he failed to establish himself under a string of coaches in the Spanish capital, despite early promise, and was farmed out on loan to Hercules and Everton.

He was unable to earn a permanent transfer with either side, and had been allowed to look for a new club since the end of 2011-12 following the expiration of his contract.

But it is Besiktas who have seemingly won the race for the left-sided player, beating off reported interest fr om Manchester City, Galatasaray and AC Milan.

AC Milan CEO Galliani to travel to Madrid for Kaka talks

Kakà - Real Madrid
AC Milan remain hopeful of securing the services of Real Madrid playmaker Kaka, as CEO Adriano Galliani is set to travel to the Spanish capital to discuss a potential summer move.

The Brazil international has long been linked with a return to the Rossoneri, but the Serie A outfit's dire financial situation has made a potential transfer complicated.

Nevertheless, Milan have not given up hope of re-signing Kaka just yet, and will re-open talks in the upcoming days.

"I will travel to Madrid in the next few days. We will have to wait and see what is possible," Galliani commented to Sky Sport Italia when questioned on a potential move for Kaka.

Milan are reportedly looking to sign the 30-year-old on a free one-year loan deal, and are willing to pay 50 per cent of the Brazilian's annual 10 million salary.

Makoun joins Rennes on loan from Aston Villa

Jean Makoun, Aston Villa
Aston Villa midfielder Jean Il Makoun is set to join Ligue 1 outfit Rennes on a season-long loan.

The Cameroon international failed to secure a UK work permit for the coming campaign and has been forced into a second spell away from the Midlands club.

The 29-year old made 35 appearances on loan at Greek side Olympiakos last season, after being deemed surplus to requirements by then-manager Alex McLeish.

And Rennes boss Pierre Dreossi has hailed Makoun's arrival, telling the club's official website: "We were looking for an experienced midfielder. I know him very well because I signed him when I was at Lille."

Villa manager Paul Lambert will hope his side can atone for their 1-0 opening day loss to newly promoted West Ham when they take on Everton at home on Saturday.

Jumat, 24 Agustus 2012

Arsenal move for Sahin is 'not alive', says Wenger

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that the club are still in the market for further signings, but admits a move for Real Madrid midfielder Nuri Sahin is unlikely.

The Gunners had seemingly pipped Liverpool to the Turkey international's signature but an apparent late collapse in negotiations has seen Reds manager Brendan Rodgers declare his side favourites.

"At the moment, it is not alive. Can you be not alive and not dead? It is possible," Wenger told reporters of Sahin's potential arrival.

Whilst the Frenchman insisted he is happy with the balance of his squad, he also admitted he could still be tempted to move for a "special" player this summer.

"We will only take players who have something special," Wenger added. "We are still in the market in some positions, but overall we believe we have a very strong squad.

"We have a good mixture because we have experienced players in midfield like [Mikel] Arteta and [Santi] Cazorla, like [Tomas] Rosicky, and some young very promising players like [Alex] Oxlade-Chamberlain, [Aaron] Ramsey, [Francis] Coquelin, [Jack] Wilshere and one or two in between age wise like [Abou] Diaby, who is coming back. We believe we have a good mixture."

The 62-year-old went on to express his hope that fleet-footed winger Theo Walcott will soon sign a new deal with the north London outfit.

"We try to sort it out, and we will try to sort it out one way or the other," he continued.

"We want to extend his contract, and to keep him at the club. His desire is also right, he wants to stay and we need to find an agreement."

Official: Chelsea confirm Moses signing

Victor Moses of Wigan Athletic
More to follow...

Maicon wanted by Manchester City, Chelsea and Real Madrid, claims agent

Maicon - Inter
Inter full-back Maicon is being chased by Manchester City, Chelsea and Real Madrid this summer, according to the player's agent.

Having expressed a desire to explore a new challenge, the Italian giants are willing to listen to offers as they look to shift on some of the more experienced members of their squad on high wages and the player's representative Roberto Calenda has named the clubs after the player.

"There is interest from Manchester City, Real Madrid and Chelsea in the player," Calenda told Calciomercato.

"There is no possibility that he goes to AC Milan or Juventus.

"He has worn the Nerazzurri shirt for six seasons and has too much respect for the fans to betray them in that manner.

"He could also yet remain at Inter."

With Chelsea recently completing a deal to sign Marseille right-back Cesar Azpilicueta, it remains to be seen whether they still remain in the race for the B razilian.

However, Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini is known to be anxious to add some depth to his squad before the transfer window closes as he seeks to bolster his squad in a bid to retain the Premier League title this term.

Celtic look to sign Japan's Yuki Otsu on one-year loan - report

Olympics Day -1 - Men's Football - Spain v Japan, Yuki Otsu and Inigo Martinez
Reigning Scottish champions Celtic are close to signing a one-year loan agreement for Japan international Yuki Otsu, Sponichi reported on Friday.

The 22-year-old spent most of last season on the outside looking in at Borussia Monchengladbach, making just three appearances. But he emerged rapidly in the 2012 London Olympics, scoring three goals - including the shocking game-winner against Spain - on the way to Japan's unexpected fourth-place finish.

"We've received an offer from Celtic and are in negotiatons," a source close to Otsu told Sponichi. "Once we settle on the terms the transfer should go through."

The former Kashiwa Reysol man told his club's website earlier this month that he expected to be loaned for the season.

A move to Glasgow would draw inevitable comparisons between Otsu and Japanese legend Shunsuke Nakamura, who scored 33 goals in 164 appearances for the Hoops. Winger Koki Mizuno, once a team-mate of Otsu's at Reysol, also spent two and a half years at the club, making just 11 appearances.

The loan would also allow the youngster a chance to participate in the Champions League group stage, after Monchengladbach's chances of progressing in the tournament were severely threatened by a 3-1 loss to Dynamo Kiev in the play-off stage.

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Kamis, 23 Agustus 2012

Official: Moussa Konate joins Kuban Krasnodar

Senegal Olympic star Moussa Konate has joined Kuban Krasnodar on a three-year contract after the club agreed a 2 million deal with his current employers Maccabi Tel-Aviv.

The 19-year-old forward burst into the limelight when he excelled at the London Olympics, scoring five goals in four matches before Senegal were defeated in the quarter-finals to eventual winners Mexico.

His performances earned him Goal.com's World Player of the Week award in July and a move abroad, and the Israeli outfit were quick to thank the player for his contributions.

"We thank Moussa for his services and wish him to continue his good form from the Olympics," a statement on the club's official read.

Krasnodar currently sit in 10th place in the Russian Premier League, having accumulated six points from five games.

Laudrup hopeful over swoop for Pablo Hernandez and Ki Sung-Yeung

Michael Laudrup, Swansea City manager
Swansea City bossMichael Laudrup is confident of completing the signing of Celtic midfielder Ki Sung-Yueng this week and remains hopeful of bringing in Pablo Hernandez from Valencia.

Ki, who helped South Korea to a bronze medal at the Olympics this summer, is close to sealing a move to south Wales after a 6 million deal for his services was finalised.

And Laudrup hailed the 23-year-old, expressing his belief that Ki will provide a solution to the problems raised by Joe Allen's recent departure.

"The contract is not signed yet. I would like to wait before everything is signed and sealed but the deal should go through, he is an important player for us to have in the midfield, Laudrup told reporters.

"We have lost Joe Allen so it is important for the strength of the squad to have a player like that, if we sign him then we'll all be happy.

"He's a very dynamic player and, like the players we have signed and those we w ill sign, he can fit into our style.

"He has already played a couple of seasons in British football, which is important.

"The players we have brought in from abroad have made a great start, but to have experience of the British style of football is important."

The Dane went on to express his confidence that a deal can still be done for Spanish forward Hernandez, after an initial offer of 4m was turned down by Valencia.

"We still have eight days [to complete a deal]," he continued.

"It is always nice to hear players want to come here or play for a manager, but we will leave these things until after Saturday's game against West Ham because the most important players are the ones that are here, not the ones who could come or leave, that's why we must focus on the game."

Laudrup also remained cagey on the future of winger Scott Sinclair, who is a reported target for Manchester City and remained on the bench during Saturday's 5-0 win over QPR.

"What will happen in next week I don't know, we will see, he said on the matter.

"The fact he wasn't in the starting XI was nothing to do with the interest from Man City, it was because Wayne Routledge and Nathan Dyer were here from the start of pre-season and know exactly what I want them to do with or without the ball. Scott had only been here for nine or 10 days.

"We will have to see what happens now, a deal might not happen until next Friday evening perhaps, he continued.

"But he is 100 per cent committed while he is here and that's important for me as a manager."

Wigan accept Chelsea offer for Moses

Victor Moses of Wigan Athletic
Wigan Athletic have accepted a bid for Victor Moses from Chelsea, revealing the Blues have finally met the valuation set by the club.

The midfielder was on the receiving end of four unsuccessful bids by the European champions but Dave Whelan has finally agreed to sell the player on the fifth attempt.

The club announced on their website that they had given Chelsea permission to speak to Moses as the move looks set to go through sometime this week.

The 21-year-old played the full 90 minutes against his potential new club last weekend but failed to get on the score sheet as Di Matteo's men ran out 2-0 victors.

Moses' versatility - he can either play out wide or as a central striker - is believed to have attracted Chelsea as they look to push reigning champions Manchester City all the way in the Premier League.

He has played for England at under-16, under-17, under-19 and under-21 level but has since pledged his a llegiance to the country of his birth, Nigeria, and is now in their senior plans.

Barton wants to play for Marseille and is in negotiations, claims agent

EPL - Queens Park Rangers v Newcastle United, Joey Barton

QPR midfielder Joey Barton wants to play for Marseille and is currently in negotiations with the club, according to his agent Willie McKay.

The controversial midfielder has been linked with the French side for some time, after losing the captaincy at Loftus Road and being left without a squad number.

Barton was hit with a 12-game ban at the end of last season following his dismissal against Manchester City and QPR have since gone on a huge recruitment drive over the summer.

Barton now looks set to leave Loftus Road with a move to Marseille seemingly his preferred destination.

Joey Barton wants to play for OM next season, agent Willie McKay told RMC.

We're in negotiations, but nothing is finished at the moment.

I don't want to make any more comments on the negotiations out of respect to Jose Anigo [Marseille sporting director] and Vincent Labrune [Marseille president]."

Marseille have made a strong start to the Ligue 1 season taking six points from their first two games against newly promoted Reims and Sochaux.

Fiorentina in talks over move for want-away Manchester United star Berbatov

Friendly - AmaZulu FC v Manchester United,Dimitar Berbatov
By Greg Stobart

Fiorentinaare in talks withManchester United over a 3 million move forDimitar Berbatov - a deal that could hold the key to Manchester Citys pursuit of Stevan Jovetic.

The Italian side want to sign Berbatov as a replacement for Jovetic, who Goal.com revealed on Tuesday is close to a switch to City, with the clubs in advanced talks over a 23.6m deal.

City are also understood to be talking to Fiorentina about a deal for Serbian defender Matija Nastasic, who has been labelled the next Nemanja Vidic and previously been linked with United.

But the key to Jovetics departure from the Viola could be whether they can find an adequate replacement before the transfer window closes at the end of the month.

Berbatov is their preferred choice and the Bulgarian striker is desperate to leave United as he looks for regular football after falling down the pecking order at Old Trafford.

Zenit St Petersburg and Dynamo Kiev have also expressed an interest in the 31-year-old, who finished as top scorer in the Premier League two seasons ago.

Now, however, he finds himself unlikely to feature for Sir Alex Fergusons side as he fights for a place with Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie, Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez.

Berbatov, who cost 30.75m when he signed from Tottenham in 2008, made just 12 Premier League appearances last season, scoring seven goals.

Follow Greg Stobart on

Rabu, 22 Agustus 2012

Zinho: Ganso to Flamengo deal impossible without investment

Ganso - Santos
Flamengo sporting director Zinho has called Ganso a "great player", but admits that without third-party investment, signing the Santos star would be impossible.

The Brazil international has been linked with a number of different clubs during the summer transfer window, but so far a move has failed to materialise.

Zinho expressed his admiration for the 22 year-old, telling Lancenet: "Ganso is a great player. I really wanted him at Flamengo, but we are not negotiating."

The 1994 World Cup winner did not rule out a transfer if the Brazilian club were able to find outside investment, however: "He is an expensive player and we are not able to sign him without a partner.

If any investor wanted to help, it would be different," he added.

The former Brazilian star also confirmed that Flamengo remain keen to add to their squad before the end of the transfer window.

"Nothing is set in stone," he said. " While the market provides business, we will be open and we can talk. The window is there and we still have time."

Modric transfer to Real Madrid imminent, claims Mamic

Luka Modric of Tottenham
Tottenham midfielder Luka Modric's move to Real Madrid is certain to be completed shortly, according to Dinamo Zagreb director of football Zoran Mamic.

Modric joined Spurs from the Croatian club for 20.9 million in 2008 and the north London side are now reportedly demanding over double that for the diminutive playmaker.

Negotiations over his move to the Spanish giants have been ongoing through the summer, but Mamic insists they will conclude in time to meet the transfer deadline.

You read many things in the media but from the information I have, Luka will move to Real Madrid for sure, Mamic told 24sata.

"I've heard it's almost done, so I don't have any doubts Luka will play for Real Madrid next season, Mamic continued.

"It is just a question of when the official announcement will be."

Modric has made 127 league appearances for Tottenham, contributing 13 goals and 21 as sists over four seasons.

Arsenal sales of Van Persie and Song a 'big mistake', says Eduardo

FA Cup, Eduardo; Arsene Wegner, Arsenal Vs Cardiff City
Former Arsenal striker Eduardo has described the club's decision to sell Robin van Persie and Alex Song as a "big mistake".

The Gunners recently allowed last season's Premier League top scorer to join Manchester United for 24 million, before sanctioning Song's 15m switch to Barcelona.

But the Croatian, who spent three years with the north London club before a serious ankle injury saw him lose form and fitness prior to a move to his current club, Shakhtar Donetsk, is confident that they will remain a top side.

"It is a big mistake to sell them - they were the most important players last season," Eduardo told BBC Sport. "But they have other quality players to stay as a big club at the top.

"Van Persie and Song were the key players last season - they held the team. When you lose two players like that, your chance of finishing in the top four is less.

"But Arsenal still have a good team and I'm confident they will do well. Last year when they lost Nasri and Fabregas, everyone thought they would not finish in the top four but they did.

"When the season finishes, we'll see if it was a mistake or not. It's very sad to lose two big players like that but we must respect the new players and believe they can keep Arsenal at the top."

Despite his insistence that Arsenal will not fall down the league, the Brazil-born striker went on to claim that their chances of reclaiming the Premier League title are slim due to their policy of selling players.

"Every player comes to Arsenal as a simple player and Arsenal make them into a big player, but they can't keep everyone together to fight for titles," he added.

"Every year it's similar - they lose players, buy players, make them class players and the next year they sell again. They are always in the same place."

The 29-year-old also expressed his desire to play in the Premier Leag ue again one day, hinting that he would jump at the chance to return to the Gunners.

"It would be nice if they wanted me to join again, but it's not the kind of thing I'm thinking about," he continued.

"If I played for Arsenal now I could score some important goals from nothing - in games like Sunderland, when it's 0-0 and you score the only goal. My studying of the game is like that.

"I can give you a lot of important points. I think Arsenal are missing some players like that. You never know. When you've played in the Premier League, you sometimes miss the atmosphere in the stadiums and the playing style. I miss this and hope one day I will come back."