Today’s transfer roundup starts off with a hint of bitterness – or is it the much-needed integrity that we football fans have been yearning for recently, in the wake of all of the disloyalty shown to us by our favorite clubs and players?
Also, if Roy Keane is reading this, you might need to give Wikipedia a quick check to see the last time an earthquake hit Sunderland.
Tottenham have lodged complaints to the Premier League against Manchester United and Liverpool over public comments made by Sir Alex Ferguson (in regards to Dimitar Berbatov) and Rafa Benitez (in regards to Robbie Keane) on their desires and plans to sign Spurs’ star strike duo.
Rumor Rating: 5 – Daniel Levy says he has no plans to sell either player and branded SAF a hypocrite, given the way he’s handled Real Madrid’s tickling of Cristiano Ronaldo’s fancy, and you can understand his displeasure about managers making comments about his club’s players when they’re still very much under contract. Buuuuut, judging by these comments, it seems he thinks that they’re the ones responsible for Berba and Keane wanting to leave, when a) Berbatov’s had the itch to go for a while, and b) I highly, highly doubt that Keane needs the slightest bit of prodding to want to jump ship for Merseyside.
What’s more important? £50m or integrity, loyalty, mutual respect, and two of the top strikers in the Premier League leading your club to success? I suppose we’ll find out soon.
Liverpool could be set to sell Andriy Voronin to help fund a move for Gareth Barry that may well not be off after all. The Ukrainian forward joined on a free transfer from Bayer Leverkusen last summer and scored six goals.
Rumor Rating: 5 – Well, they’d be making a profit, so whatever they can get is definitely a plus.
They’ve offset the cash spent by signing Palmeiras goalkeeper Diego Cavalieri by selling Scott Carson to West Brom for £3.25m. Carson has signed a four-year deal with the option of a fifth year, and he’s the seventh summer signing for the Baggies.
Rumor Rating: 5 – West Brom have spent nearly £14m on signings thus far, and hopefully it’ll pay off in an extended stay in the Premier League, rather than a quick trip back to the Championship.
Stoke may have missed out on Carson, but they have finally tied up their first signing of the summer, and it’s a club-record one in Reading striker Dave Kitson, who will cost the Potters £5.5m.
Rumor Rating: 5 – The money will help Reading make a couple of additions as they prepare for life (hopefully a short one) in the Championship, while Kitson will give Stoke more quality scoring options to go with Richard Cresswell, Ricardo Fuller, and Liam Lawrence, who’ll likely be the provider for quite a few of Kitson’s goals.
Lawrence’s former club, Sunderland, have had a £23m bid for four players accepted by Tottenham, but it appears that one of the players is a little hesitant to join Sunderland, to say the least. The agent of defender/flop Younes Kaboul says that the Frenchman wouldn’t join Sunderland even if there was an earthquake.
Rumor Rating: 3 – I’m not sure that Mr. Agent has much of a place to slate Sunderland (and neither does Kaboul for that matter), because if he’d had a good season at Tottenham and justified that £7m fee that Spurs paid for him, he likely wouldn’t be out on his arse after only ONE season, would he? Besides that, Tottenham were only seven points and four places better than a Sunderland side that is only going to get better.
Blackburn have rejected a £2m bid from Newcastle for Stephen Warnock. The versatile Warnock, who made his England debut against Trinidad & Tobago in June, has enjoyed a good run at Blackburn since moving from Liverpool in January 2007.
Rumor Rating: 2 – Seeing as how Warnock signed for Blackburn for £1.5m, it’ll take a good bit more than £2m to get him away from Ewood Park.
Mallorca are looking at Valencia’s Fernando Morientes as a potential replacement for Dani Guiza, who recently moved to Fenerbahce. Morientes could very well be up for sale if Valencia snare Real Zaragoza striker Diego Milito, who has also been linked with multiple Premier League clubs.
Rumor Rating: 4 – Injuries hampered Morientes last season, as he scored only eight goals, but he’s still got a lot left in him if he can stay healthy and get regular opportunities.
Lazio have been pretty busy this summer, and they have swung another deal, signing Real Zaragoza’s Brazilian midfielder Francelino Matuzalem on a season-long loan. The 28-year old joined from Shakhtar Donetsk last summer, but he only made a handful of appearances for the relegated club.
Rumor Rating: 5 – This isn’t Matuzalem’s first go-round in Serie A, as he played for the likes of Napoli, Parma, and Brescia before making a Ukrainian-record (approx. â‚¬12m) move to Shakhtar in 2004.
Bologna are interested in Torino’s Alessandro Rosina. The 24-year old winger has been at Torino since 2005 and has played a key role in keeping Torino in Serie A over the last couple of seasons, but he could be on his way out after having a public war of words with the club’s president this week.
Rumor Rating: 5 – Rosina could very well cost only â‚¬6.5m, and he could be one of the centerpieces of a newly-promoted Bologna side that will be lodging their own battle to stay up next season.
Barcelona could be set to seal a â‚¬10m deal for Palmeiras defender Henrique in the near future, and he could be shipped off to Bayer Leverkusen on loan shortly thereafter.
Rumor Rating: 4 – The 21-year old likely wouldn’t see much in the way of pitch time next season with Barca set in the center of defense, but his opportunities could be a lot more regular at Bayer, where he’d slot in a back line that was actually pretty solid last season (4th best defensive record in the Bundesliga).
Finally, Bakari Kone will get his wish. The Nice striker will be getting his move to Marseille after a drawn-out, on-off, on-off drama, and he stands to cost Marseille â‚¬9m, with a further â‚¬1m to be thrown in if Marseille qualify for the Champions League at least once in the next four seasons.
Rumor Rating: 5 – At the same time, Marseille coach Erik Gerets says that he doesn’t want Djibril Cisse going anywhere, so if they can hold on to him and get the most out of their new signings, it should be a dogfight between Lyon, Bordeaux, and Marseille for the Ligue 1 crown next season.
Well, that’s it for the day in transfer news. What do you think of today’s tidbits? Do Liverpool still need to be pursuing Barry, or should their options lie elsewhere? Would you join Sunderland for the right price? With the signings that they’ve made, do you think West Brom will be staying up next season?
Chime in with your thoughts on today’s bits, chip in with news and spec that you’ve heard and read, check out the updated summer transfer lists, and I’ll be back tomorrow.