Is it safe to say that striker receives more time in the transfer gossip pages from January to December than any other position? Several well-known strikers are in today’s transfer news and rumors, but the goal-getters aren’t the only men in the summer shop window. In today’s roundup, we’ve got tidbits from several of Europe’s top leagues, with several big names being linked with big clubs.
Chelsea After Adebayor and Young
It’s looking increasingly likely that Carlo Ancelotti will be Chelsea’s next manager, and two names he could look to in order to strength his attack could be Arsenal’s Emmanuel Adebayor and Aston Villa’s Ashley Young. (Daily Mail)
Analysis: Martin O’Neill’s not letting Young go anywhere anytime soon, so that one can be dismissed right off the bat. I don’t rate Adebayor’s chances of being at Arsenal next season that highly, but I don’t think Arsene would let him go to Chelsea, unless the money offered was something that absolutely couldn’t be refused.
Chelsea Interested in Wolfsburg Star Dzeko
Wolfsburg striker Edin Dzeko has confirmed Chelsea’s interest in him, and the Bosnian goal-getter also says that his future is up in the air, due to Felix Magath’s impending departure to Schalke 04. (Tribal Football)
Analysis: I’m sure Wolfsburg will bring in a solid replacement for Magath, but I think the chances of him remaining at Wolfsburg aren’t too high, especially with some top sides sure to come after him. He certainly won’t come on the cheap though, because he’s young and he’s proven his worth as a prolific scorer in a top league.
Tottenham to Pip Man City to Santa Cruz?
Harry Redknapp will likely be in the market for at least one new striker in the summer, and one of his prime targets looks to be Blackburn’s Roque Santa Cruz, who, in case we didn’t know already, wants to leave Ewood Park. In return for Santa Cruz, Blackburn could receive cash and striker Darren Bent. (Daily Mail)
Analysis: It seems like Manchester City’s interest in Santa Cruz waned in January, so he could be Harry’s to lose. Given his injury issues and a loss of form this season, his valuation takes a big hit, but cash plus a solid striker in Bent is a reasonable deal.
Newcastle Interested in Wigan’s Scharner
Defense will be one of Newcastle’s main issues to address in the summer if they remain in the Premier League, and one of the targets at the top of Alan Shearer’s wishlist is Wigan center back Paul Scharner. (Daily Mail)
Analysis: I find it a little strange that Newcastle are being linked with such transfers when their safety is anything but secured, but I digress. Steve Bruce wouldn’t want to see him leave, but the £6m is something that Newcastle could afford to pay if they do go after him.
Blackburn to Seal Permanent Givet Deal
Blackburn are set to shell out the 4m needed to make defender Gael Givet a permanent signing. The French defender has impressed since joining from Marseille on loan in January. (The Mirror)
Analysis: Defensive improvement over the last few months has been key towards Blackburn moving away from the relegation zone and securing their safety, and Givet has had a big hand in that, so making the deal permanent was the right move.
Bolton to Bid for Middlesbrough’s O’Neil
Bolton are set to make a £4m bid for Middlesbrough midfielder Gary O’Neil. (The Mirror)
Analysis: Middlesbrough rebuffed advances for O’Neil in January, but their potential relegation combined with his reported issues with settling in the area make his sale a realistic possibility. I’d have to favor Portsmouth over Bolton, however.
Barcelona to Swoop for Ibrahimovic?
According to Italian news reports, Inter Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has already agreed personal terms and signed a pre-contract with Barcelona. (Tribal Football)
Analysis: The knock on Ibrahimovic is his performances (or lack thereof, rather) in big games, but in a squad as talented as Barcelona, he’d have no reason not to do well in those situations. At the same time, he could get away with his disappearing act, with Messi, Henry, or Iniesta all too ready and raring to step up.
Inter Lead Race for Milito
Despite a bevy of interest from abroad, including the Premier League, it appears that Genoa striker Diego Milito could be set to remain in Italy,
Analysis: I was hoping to be able to see Milito in the Premier League next season, but it appears that Inter will be needing a replacement (not a partner, as Milito’s agent says) for Ibrahimovic, so they’re going to be hard to beat.
AC Milan to Lure Toni Back to Italy?
AC Milan could try to use Yoann Gourcuff as bait to persuade Bayern Munich to sell striker Luca Toni. (Tribal Football)
Analysis: No disrespect to Toni, who’s a great striker and is by no means on the decline, but shouldn’t AC Milan be trying to inject a little more youth in their squad?
Bordeaux Step Up Interest in Kameni
Bordeaux manager Laurent Blanc sees Espanyol keeper Carlos Kameni as his ideal #1 for next season. But, he’ll have to face some competition from Benfica, who have already made an offer for the Cameroonian, who’ll be out of contract in June. (Tribal Football)
Analysis: Considering how much mention Kameni has gotten in the transfer pages in recent years, you’d think he’d have more than just the one offer from Benfica, but he’ll certainly land on his feet.
Celtic Bid for Hamilton’s McCarthy
Celtic have made a bid for highly-rated Hamilton midfielder James McCarthy, but the club says that this offer, just as with Portsmouth’s recent offer, will be rejected. (Sky Sports)
Analysis: The interest is reciprocal, which is no surprise, but Hamilton aren’t about to be ripped off for their prized asset. There’s a good chance Celtic will come back at least another time or two in the summer, but I think he’ll remain at Hamilton for at least one more season, if not more.
Benfica Linked with Quaresma
Inter are likely going to offload Ricardo Quaresma in the summer, and Benfica are closely watching any developments. The Portuguese winger is currently on loan at Chelsea, but with him seeing very little time on the pitch since Guus Hiddink’s arrival, a permanent deal at Stamford Bridge doesn’t look too likely. (Benfica Linked with Quaresma”>Sky Sports)
Analysis: His talent’s unquestioned, but he’s always played better in Portugal than he has anywhere else. His performances at Sporting and Porto have earned him moves to bigger clubs, so he might as well make the rounds to all of Portugal’s Big Three, earn a move back to Italy, Spain, or England in a couple of seasons, and hopefully stick.