Shock Drogba Swoop For City
According to the Sun, Manchester City are getting set to make a £20m bid for Chelsea striker Didier Drogba.
Analysis: This one could have some legs, as it’s actually a great move for Chelsea. Sure, Drogba’s coming off an amazing season, but he isn’t a spring chicken, and there aren’t many 32-year-olds who can command £20m and up. And selling Drogba to City also means that there’s one less competitor in their pursuit of Fernando Torres.
Liverpool Land Jovanovic
Liverpool have finally completed the signing of free agent Serbian attacker Milan Jovanovic. The 29-year-old signed a pre-contract with Liverpool in February, and after some speculation that he could waver, the former Standard Liege star has penned a three-year deal to make his move to Anfield official. (Sky Sports)
Analysis: There’s someone a little further down who could take a tip from this one.
Trio Tussle For Wright-Phillips
Arsenal are ahead of Liverpool and Tottenham for Manchester City winger Shaun Wright-Phillips, according to the Sun. The England international is available for a low price, but his wage demands could prove to be an issue with Arsenal and perhaps the other suitors as well.
Analysis: Considering what a fit, in form SWP can bring to the table, and that any buyer won’t have to reach too deep into the pockets for the transfer fee, having to stump up an extra £10k or £20k per week isn’t asking too much.
Spurs To Snag Steven‘s Signature?
The Sun also says that Tottenham could try to sway Everton to part with midfielder Steven Pienaar by offering either Robbie Keane or Jermaine Jenas.
Analysis: Pienaar hasn’t yet signed a new contract with Everton, and that situation doesn’t appear to close to being resolved anytime soon. With Pienaar’s current contract up after next season, if this drags out deep into the summer, Everton might decide to cash in while they can. So, if Tottenham don’t mind being patient, they can still get their man soon enough.
Blackburn Target Dos Santos
Blackburn are considering a move for Tottenham forward Giovani dos Santos, according to the Sun.
Analysis: Blackburn could certainly benefit from his talents, but Harry Redknapp has opened the door for him to have a breakthrough this season at White Hart Lane, provided he holds up his end of the bargain. If he stays but we see him in this space again in January, that will likely mean that he didn’t.
West Ham Close On Barrera
West Ham are set to finalize a £3m deal for Pumas winger Pablo Barrera within the next couple of days. Espanyol and Everton have both also made bids, but the 23-year-old Mexico international looks to be on his way to Upton Park. (Daily Mail)
Analysis: By adding Barrera and Thomas Hitzlsperger, West Ham have done well to greatly strengthen their midfield, and they’ve done so by spending very little. The addition of the versatile Barrera, who can be effective on either flank, will give Avram Grant no shortage of selection options. It’s a good headache to have though, certainly.
Alcaraz To Back Out of Wigan Deal?
Paraguayan defender Antolin Alcaraz says that he could change his mind about signing for Wigan. The former Club Brugge man has already agreed a deal and signed a pre-contract with Wigan, but his impressive World Cup showing has attracted new interest. (Daily Mail)
Analysis: It’s understandable that he might be a little starry-eyed if some bigger names have come in for him after seeing perform well in South Africa, and hey, until the contract’s officially signed, he’s still on the market. But he did give his word to the club, and it’d be a real slap in the face for Roberto Martinez if Alcaraz backed out at this point.
Baggies Stand Firm On Dorrans
West Bromwich Albion have rejected a third bid from West Ham for midfielder Graham Dorrans, and club chairman Jeremy Peace has insisted that the 23-year-old isn‘t for sale to anyone, West Ham or otherwise. (Sky Sports)
Analysis: Well, Fulham kept trying and trying for Jonathan Greening last summer until they were able to land him, so perhaps West Ham is hoping persistence pays off. I don’t see that happening this time though.
Villarreal Sign Valero
Villarreal have signed midfielder Borja Valero from West Bromwich Albion. The 25-year-old, who excelled on loan at Mallorca last season, has agreed a five-year deal with his new club. (The Mirror)
Analysis: Valero was a big reason why Mallorca very nearly qualified for the Champions League, and he could have the same impact for Villarreal, who finished a disappointing seventh last season and missed out on Europe by just a handful of points.
Genoa Sign Eduardo
A few days ago, I mentioned that Sporting Braga had offered goalkeeper Eduardo to Arsenal. Well, Braga won‘t have to worry about meeting up with him in the Champions League, as the Portuguese #1 has agreed a move to Genoa. (Sky Sports)
Analysis: After having one of Serie A’s best defensive records in their excellent 2008-09 season, Genoa had one of the worst last season, allowing 61 goals (tied with last-place Livorno for second-most allowed, behind only Siena, who finished 19th). With Eduardo’s shot-stopping skills, I think that total will decrease by quite a bit this coming season.
Bordeaux Eye Guiza
Bordeaux are interested in Fenerbahce striker Daniel Guiza. The former Mallorca man has scored 11 goals in back-to-back seasons in Turkey, and he has 34 goals in 93 total appearances in those two seasons. (Transfer Market Web)
Analysis: Fenerbahce have actively been searching for a new striker, and this is also not the first time that Guiza has been linked with a move, so one could assume it’s a matter of when, not if, Guiza will be leaving this summer. With his recent record of success and Bordeaux’s need for a new striker after Marouane Chamakh’s departure, I don’t think the French side will have a problem helping Fener recoup much of the €17.4m that was spent on Guiza two summers ago.
Besiktas’ Robinho Bid Rejected
Manchester City have rejected a £16.7m bid by Besiktas for Robinho. (Daily Mail)
Analysis: Valencia have been linked with Robinho in recent days, and they’ve come into quite a bit of cash this summer, so we’ll see if City can convince them to stump up upwards of 20m.
Galatasaray Swoop For Cana
Along with another new center back, Sunderland now have a need for a new midfielder and captain, as Lorik Cana has left to join Galatasaray in a £5m deal. (The Mirror)
Analysis: Unfortunate for Sunderland, considering how important Cana had become in such a short time, but the chance to be much closer to his family is one he couldn’t pass up, and neither is the chance for regular European football.
Benfica Bid For Almeida
Benfica have made a bid of around €7m for Werder Bremen striker Hugo Almeida. Almeida scored 11 goals in 34 appearances for Werder last season, and he also netted in Portugal‘s 7-0 demolition of North Korea in the World Cup group stage. (Transfer Market Web)
Analysis: Almeida has a solid strike rate for Werder (52 goals in 144 appearances, including 14 in 40 European appearances), but he only made 13 league starts last season, and with Werder having landed highly rated Austrian striker Marko Arnautovic, Almeida’s very expendable. Benfica aren’t short on depth and quality at striker, but his reliability in front of goal will ensure he has his fair share of opportunities.