Rumours of Arda Turan to Chelsea persist, with The Telegraph claiming that the Turkish winger is keen to head to Stamford Bridge. They sight the fact that Turan took to Twitter to deny rumours that he was in negotiations with Barcelona over a move to the Champions League winners. He said he was “…on holidays and resting”. Chelsea and Arsenal are both keen on the 28 year old.
With Petr Cech having officially completed his move to Arsenal this week (more on that shortly), The Mirror reckon that Asmir Begovic is the player that Jose Mourinho wants to replace him in the number 2 spot. Not only that, but Begovic himself is happy to move to the defending Premier League champions – even if it means spending most of the season on the bench. The stumbling block is likely to be the price, with Stoke believing Begovic is worth about £8 million but Mourinho unhappy to pay such a fee.
The Express are fairly confident that Manchester City are leading the race to sign Paul Pogba from Juventus. The midfielder will have his pick of clubs this summer after an impressive campaign in Serie A, but the club that pays him the most could decide his destination. Juve have rejected a bid of £56.7 million from Barcelona for the 22 year old, and it’s believed that they think Man City will pay up to £71 million for him. An incredible amount of money, of course, but he is the player Pellegrini thinks will replace Yaya Toure in his midfield, and that is a feat worth paying for.
The Guardian are reporting that Manchester City are one of several English teams having a look at Baba Rahman, Augsburg’s current left back. The 21 year old would be available for around £14 million and could offer some genuine competition in City’s defence. The Ghanian has 4 years left on his contract, though, so Augsburg won’t be bullied on price.
Finally on City, a lovely bit of needle. Manchester United fans have been getting giddy at the idea of welcoming Sergio Ramos to Old Trafford next season, so they may not have been delighted to read The Daily Mirror say that City are considering gazumping their neighbours for the player. The Real defender is struggling to agree a new contract with the Spanish club, a fact that United were hoping to take advantage of. But with the transfer of David De Gea in the blance, City could be the ones to walk away with the £64 million rated 29 year old.
The big news for Arsenal this week is the arrival of Petr Cech from Chelsea. The 33 year old has been allowed to leave by Roman Abramovich, seemingly against Jose Mourinho’s wishes. The Czech international has won the Premier League Golden Glove 3 times and brings a huge amount of experience to the Arsenal dressing room.
TalkSport are always hugely reliable, honest, so Arsenal fans will no doubt have already started to get the name Faouzi Ghoulam printed on the back of their shirts. The motormouth radio station think that Arsenal are poised to make a £9 million move for the 24 year old, despite already being quite stocked up with options at left back.
Meanwhile The Telegraph think that Atletico Madrid want to bring in Santi Cazorla should their winger Arda Turan decide to head to…Arsenal. So a straight swap, essentially, with the 28 year old Turkish winger heading to The Emirates.
Nicolas Otamendi has been a Manchester United target for months, according to The Manchester Evening News, and their pursuit of the centre back has been given a boost with reports that he will not be joining Real Madrid any time soon. The 27 year old Argentinian is currently at Valencia and made it in to the La Liga team of the year last season, so he will be a welcome addition to the United squad should they fail to land Sergio Ramos.
Tuttomercatoweb claim that Louis Van Gaal has been given a quote of £35.5 million should he want to sign another Argentinian in the form of Lucas Biglia. The 29 year old defensive midfielder is available for around £20 million and could be a target for United if their pursuit of Morgan Schneiderlin from Southampton ends up in failure.
Finally for the Red Devils, Pep Guardiola has issued an ultimatum to Manchester United target Bastian Schweinsteiger, telling him he needs to make a decision about his future. The Express reckon that United have been in touch with the German World Cup winner’s representatives about a £10 million move to Old Trafford, but the player himself is keen to win more trophies with Bayern before his career comes to a close.
Spurs are hoping to entice Everton to allow James McCarthy to move to White Heart Lane by offering them cash AND Aaron Lennon, according to The Daily Mail. McCarthy is rumoured to be frustrated at Everton and Tottenham are keen to strengthen their midfield options.
Bwin.com reckon that Spurs are ready to take Southampton on in the race for the signature of in demand defender Toby Alderweireld. The Atletico Madrid centre back was on loan at St. Mary’s last season, but Spurs could yet tempt him to go to the Lane instead.
And finally, insidefootball.com are quoting Sky Italia’s Calcio Mercato concerning Tottenham’s chase of Fernando Llorente. The 30 year old Juventus striker has also attracted interest from Monaco, but it is believed that the Spaniard prefers a move to the Premier League.
Rumours spread like wild fire on Wednesday of this week that Liverpool had finally agreed a deal with Aston Villa in their pursuit of Christian Benteke. They proved to be wide of the mark, however, with The Liverpool Echo saying that Villa won’t accept anything less than the £32.5 million the Belgian’s buyout clause demands, and Liverpool unwilling to go above £25 million.
The other big new for the Reds this week came in the form of a decision over their new assistant manager. FSG reportedly decided to release assistant manager Colin Pascoe as well as first team coach Mike Marsh in the wake of their season review with Brendan Rodgers. A month has since passed, with no one seemingly any the wiser over who was coming in to replace them. Then this week it emerged that Sean O’Driscoll has been appointed their new assistant manager, with Pepijn Lijnders promoted from the Academy in order to take over as first team coach.
The Daily Mail are ready to report that Southampton are gearing up to make a bid for Lille midfielder Idrissa Gueye – despite Villa having a £9 million offer accepted earlier in the week.
And whilst bwin.com reckon Spurs are close to signing Toby Alderweireld, TalkSport are convinced that the defender will be heading back to St. Mary’s after his successful loan spell there last season.
Tutto Mercato reckon that Palermo’s out of contract defender Ezequiel Munoz is high on Swansea’s list of targets, with the 24 year old Argentine also a target for Sampdoria. He spent some of last season on loan at the Italian club, but would prefer a move to the Premier League if the opportunity presented itself.
Wales Online, meanwhile, feel that Gary Monk is all but done with his summer business, keen to keep his existing squad as it is moving forward into the pre-season. The Swans have already brought in Andre Ayew, Franck Tabanou, Kristoffer Nordfeldt and Eder, so Monk is reasonably satisfied with what he’s done. That said, the free signing of Munoz might not be the worst thing to happen in Wales.
What a crazy week it’s been for Stoke fans, with news emerging that the Potters have had a £12 million bid accepted by Inter Milan for their Swiss attacking midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri. The 23 year old was wanted by a host of top clubs last summer, but for some reason interest has cool on the creative dynamo from those that eat at the top table. That has left the door open for Stoke to steal in and attempt to persuade him to move to the Potteries for £60,000 a week. Shaqiri, though, is not overly convinced that Mark Hughes is the man for him and is still holding out hope that a bigger club could yet come in for him.
As if that wasn’t crazy enough for Stoke fans, The Guardian reported that the club are considering a £14 million move for Liverpool’s Italian flop Mario Balotelli. It has since emerged that this might have been an internet wind-up, but stranger things have happened in football.
London24.com have reported that Palace are keen to bring Dani Osvaldo back to the Premier League, despite the Italian having his contract terminated with Southampton after he had a fight with club captain Jose Fonte. Osvaldo scored 3 goals in 14 games for the Saints and could be brought in on a 2 year deal to Selhurst Park.
Another London based media agency, The Evening Standard, reckon that Alan Pardew is so keen to be re-united with his ex-Newcastle midfielder Yohan Cabaye that he’ll offer a Crystal Palace club record amount for the Frenchman. The 29 year old started just 13 games last season and is keen to make an escape from PSG.
The big news for the Blue half of Merseyside this week is that they have confirmed the signing of Tom Cleverley from Manchester United. The midfielder turned down the chance to join Villa, despite spending some of last season on loan in the Midlands.
The Liverpool Echo are quoting Turkish sources in their report that the Toffees are interested in Galatasaray player Bruma. The pacey wide man is available on loan, and the Blues would like to bring him in if they can work out a deal for him with his parent club.
And The Daily Mirror think that Manchester United could be gearing up to take Seamus Coleman to Old Trafford, with Johnny Evans heading in the other direction. Louis Van Gaal is keen on a new right back and feels that Coleman is his man, but he’s also convinced that Johnny Evans is surplus to requirements at the club as they try to find their way back to the top of the table.
West Ham’s season has already begun, thanks to a Europa League qualifier, so Slaven Bilic would like to get his business tied up as soon as possible. The Mirror reckon that Manuel Lanzini could be about to join the Hammers on loan from the UAE’s Al Jazira. The 22 year old playmaker could then remain at Upton Park if he impresses Bilic during his time there.
With Dimitri Payet already joining the West Ham ranks, TalkSport think that Aymen Abdennour could also be on his way to London. The Hammers will have to do battle with some big European names if they want to secure the Tunisian international’s signature.
Whilst the Hammers are blowing bubbles, the Baggies are bouncing amid news of the club’s interest in Derby County’s prolific scorer Chris Martin, according to The Birmingham Mail. Martin has scored 46 goals in 93 appearances for the Rams, making him a very attractive proposition indeed to Tony Pulis.
Meanwhile The Express And Star are reporting that West Brom are set to be taken over by foreign investors after the Baggies chairman, Jeremy Peace, granted exclusivity to his preferred bidders in the takeover talks.
Undoubtedly the biggest story for Leicester fans to get their heads around this week is the club’s decision to sack manager Nigel Pearson. The owners attempted to get rid of Pearson in the middle of last season, but decided to change their mind at the last minute. Just as well given Pearson got Leicester firing on all cylinders at the end of the campaign, finishing the year as the form club in the country. But the recent racist behaviour of some players – including Pearson’s son – on a goodwill tour of Thailand has proven to be too much for the big bosses to cope with. The big question for Leicester fans now is who will come in to replace him?
Player wise, the Leicester Mercury are reporting that the Foxes are on the verge of signing N’Golo Kante from SM Caen. The French club’s Twitter account today said, “We will agree with @OfficialFOXES in the coming hours, discussions will then be with N’Golo”. The midfielder would apparently prefer a move to Marseille, but the midlanders have offered £7 million to Caen for his services, so they have put themselves in the driving seat to take him to the King Power Stadium.
NewcastleThough The Guardian apparently got it wrong when they printed rumours of a Mario Balotelli switch to Stoke, the paper are sticking to their guns over a story regarding the Italian’s potential move to the North-East. He hasn’t impressed during his time at Liverpool, but Balotelli is something of an enigma and Steve McClaren thinks he knows how to unlock the secret of Mario’s success. It seems entirely likely, given the only managers to fail to do that are lightweights like Jose Mourinho, Brendan Rodgers and Roberto Mancini.
Elsewhere The Daily Mirror are reporting that Newcastle are one of a host of clubs interested in signing Monaco’s Aymen Abdennour. The 25 year old’s agent insists that the defender wants to play in the Premier League next season, and he could be available for around £14 million.
Sunderland this week confirmed the signing of Sebastian Coates from Liverpool. The Uruguayan defender didn’t have the best time on Merseyside, only making 24 appearances for the Reds since his move their in 2011. But he played 13 times for the Black Cats on loan last season, and Dick Advocaat was impressed enough to bring him back to Wearside.
It’s been a busy couple of days for Sunderland, with the club also getting Lee Cattermole to agree to a new contract. On top of that, the Chronicle are reporting that they’ve had a £2 million bid for Adam Matthews accepted by Celtic. The Welsh full back is due to complete a medical in the coming days, if he can agree personal terms.
The Birmingham Mail have reported that there is some transfer negotiations taking place between the Midlands and Merseyside. It’s not for Benteke, as you might imagine, but rather Everton’s Luke Garbutt. Tim Sherwood is reportedly interested in bringing the 22 year old full back to Villa Park. The youngster signed a new 5 year deal at Goodison Park earlier this week, but Roberto Martinez is keen for him to gain some experience at a Premier League rival and Villa could fit the bill.
Another bit of interesting news has occurred at Villa Park this week, with numerous papers – including The Express – reporting that the club have had a £9 million offer for Idrissa Gueye accepted by his current club Lille. The trouble is that the 25 year old Senegalese midfielder isn’t convinced that Villa is the place for him, and he is yet to agree personal terms with the club in the hope that a bigger team might yet come in for his services.
Bournemouth confirmed the signing of Sylvain Distin on a free transfer from Everton this week. The 37 year old defender’s contract expired at the end of last season, so he has joined the Cherries for the season, having previously enjoyed 2 years on the South coast of England with Portsmouth.
He joins Tyrone Mings, who joined from Ipswich on a four year deal last week, as well as the goalkeeping duo of Artur Boruc and Adam Federici, plus striker Josh King who joined on a free transfer from Blackburn. On top of all of those players, the Cherries have also agreed a season long loan with Chelsea for Christian Atsu. All in all it’s been a reasonably busy summer so far for Eddie Howe.
It’s been a busy week for the Premier League new boys, with The Evening Standard reporting that they have agreed a £5.7 million deal with Tottenham for the signing of Etienne Capoue. The 26 year old has struggled at Spurs, making just 19 league starts at White Hart Lane since his arrival in 2013. But Watford are hoping for experienced players to come into Vicarage Road and are likely to offer the Frenchman a 3 year deal.
Meanwhile the BBC have confirmed that Watford have signed Matej Vydra from Udinese on a 5 year deal. The 23 year old striker has been on loan at Vicarage Road twice already, and he must have enjoyed himself as he’s now taken the plunge to move there permanently. He scored 16 times in 31 league appearances for the Hornets, so he’ll be a welcome addition to the squad.
The Canaries are chasing Swansea City winger Nathan Dyer, according to edp24.co.uk. The 27 year old made 33 appearances for the Swans last season, but is apparently not part of Gary Monk’s plans moving forward.
Finally, it looks as though Ricky van Wolfswinkel will be allowed to leave Carrow Road in order to return to Sporting Lisbon. The striker arrived for £8.5 million in 2013 but has failed to impress during his time at Norwich. TalkSport are reporting that the 26 year old has been given permission to leave by manager Alex Neil, with the fee likely to be around £5 million.