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Transfer Rumors (28 June 09): Arsenal enter hunt for French stars Ribery and Benzema, Manchester City offer to make Barcelona’s Eto’o world’s highest-paid player, Man United interested in Sunderland keeper Gordon, and more



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Sunday may have been a rest day for many, but in case you didn’t know already, there’s never a break when it comes to transfer news and rumors, especially in the summer.

While there was plenty of intriguing transfer speculation making the rounds on Sunday (and not just in England), a couple of new signings also went through, and you can find those new moves in our updated summer transfer lists. We may have another to report this evening, regarding a certain Wigan winger and a long-awaited, short-distance move to another club in the Greater Manchester area, but since I’ve said ‘almost’ on that one numerous times already, the next tidbit I post on it will be when it’s official.

There are also a few missed tidbits from Saturday and a couple from bright and early today, so there’s no shortage of news and rumors to get you going this morning.


Arsenal Jump In For Ribery And Benzema

Arsenal could be in the thick of the hunt for Bayern Munich star Franck Ribery, with the Gunners being linked with a £30m + Nicklas Bendtner bid for the French star. (Tribal Football)

Analysis: Not really going to take a lot of stock into this one. Everything that Bayern have said about Ribery, and everything about Ribery’s potential destinations don’t really lend much positive to Arsenal being a serious contender for his services. But hey, you never know.

Arsenal are also being linked with a possible move for Lyon striker Karim Benzema, with the Gunners potentially lining up a move for the French star if Emmanuel Adebayor leaves for AC Milan (which is looking all the more likely…but more on that below). (News of the World)

Analysis: It’s hard for me to see Adebayor fetching nearly as much as he would have last summer, and unless Arsenal make another big sale or two (Kolo Toure, Gael Clichy maybe), that could limit such a big investment. Even if the money was there, you have to wonder with both Ribery and Benzema whether or not Arsene would spend that much on one player.

Hleb To Make Arsenal Return?

Alexander Hleb is being linked with a return to Arsenal after an unsuccessful debut season with Barcelona. (Tribal Football)

Analysis: You can never say never about something happening, but think about this: If he was tired of London, why would he go back?

City Make ‘Stratospheric’ Eto’o Offer

Barcelona president Joan Laporta has confirmed that Manchester City have made a ‘stratospheric’ offer for striker Samuel Eto’o that would make Eto’o the highest-paid player in the world. (Daily Mail)

Analysis: With City signing Roque Santa Cruz and going hard after Eto’o, should Carlos Tevez be second-guessing a move there? Formidable front line they stand to have, but there won’t be enough starts and balls to go around for everyone to be happy, if you throw Craig Bellamy and Robinho into the mix.

United Move For Gordon?

Manchester United are being linked with a move for Sunderland keeper Craig Gordon. (Tribal Football)

Analysis: United have been linked with a move for a new keeper throughout the summer, and with a couple of foreign targets either unavailable or perhaps too costly, maybe Gordon could be viewed as a cheaper alternative.

Villa After Borowski

Aston Villa are after Bayern Munich midfielder Tim Borowski. (News of the World)

Analysis: The likeliest destination for Borowski seems to be former club Werder Bremen, but at 29, he might see this as his best opportunity to test himself abroad.

Blackburn To Sign N’Zonzi

Blackburn have agreed a deal to sign French midfielder Steven N’Zonzi from Amiens. (Sky Sports)

Analysis: Nice to get some more talent for the future, and he could well be one of those lower league diamonds in the rough. But with money in the coffers from the sale of Roque Santa Cruz, they need to look at making some buys that will help them move back on up the table immediately.

Sunderland To Sign Campbell And Bid For Davis

Sunderland could be set to beat Hull for Manchester United striker Fraizer Campbell. (The People)

Analysis: The chance to go back to a familiar environment at Hull may well not be able to match Sunderland’s future potential (and perhaps a little more stability), not to mention a likely superior contract offer. It’d be pretty unfortunate for Hull to miss out on him though, considering that it seemed like a formality that he’d sign for Hull.

Steve Bruce could also soon make a £5m bid for Rangers midfielder Steven Davis. (News of the World)

Analysis: It’ll likely take a nice amount more than that for Rangers to be tempted to part with Davis, considering that 5m would represent a paltry £2m profit on someone who was one of the keys of their title run last season.


Barcelona Bid For Luis Filipe

Barcelona have tabled an opening bid of £6m for Deportivo La Coruna star Luis Filipe, which is £2m short of what Depor reportedly want for the 23-year-old wing back. (Tribal Football)

Analysis: Shouldn’t be a problem to stump up the other couple mil it’ll take to get Depor to sell. When they do, they’ll make a pretty decent profit on him, which will soften the blow of losing one of their top players from last season.

Villarreal Interested In Pavlyuchenko

Villarreal are interested in Tottenham striker Roman Pavlyuchenko. (The Mirror)

Analysis: If Tottenham’s asking price is nearer to the £9m that’s been mentioned in past reports than to the £14m they paid for him last summer, or if Spurs would be interested in negotiating a loan-first deal, then this is one that could go through.


Fiorentina Interested In Cruz

Fiorentina are interested in veteran Argentine striker Julio Cruz. The 34-year-old is available for free due to his contract not being renewed by Inter Milan. (Transfer Market Web)

Analysis: Cruz has had a lot of success in Serie A over the last several seasons with Bologna and Inter, and he also has a lot of experience in Europe.

Napoli In Again For Pellissier

Napoli have made a new bid of €5m plus goalkeeper Matteo Gianello and left back Luigi Vitale. (Transfer Market Web)

Analysis: Chievo have said previously that Pellissier isn’t for sale, but the new offer could prove to be tempting. In the end, it could well be better for Pellissier to stay with Chievo through at least the World Cup. If he moves to Napoli or Fiorentina, he could well be fighting for opportunities with multiple strikers, which could hamper his chances of being in Marcelo Lippi’s consideration for a place in the World Cup squad. But if he stays where he’s the star man and has another fantastic season, it could net him more opportunities with the national team (he scored on his Italy debut recently) and a chance to cement a ticket to South Africa.


Dzeko Staying At Wolfsburg

Wolfsburg have decided that striker Edin Dzeko will be staying at the club. Dzeko has been heavily linked with AC Milan this summer, but Wolfsburg are intent on keeping him for the time being. (Sky Sports)

Analysis: Dzeko staying at Wolfsburg is good news for Arsenal, since that bumps Emmanuel Adebayor up on AC Milan’s list. However, for Wolfsburg, this may not turn out too well if Dzeko’s the type to let his unhappiness about not being able to get the move he wants affect his play.

M’Gladbach Sign Arango

Borussia Monchengladbach have signed Mallorca star Juan Arango for €3.6m. (Goal.com)

Analysis: Great signing for M’Gladbach. After losing Alexander Baumjohann and Marko Marin, who combined for 10 goals and 17 assists in all competitions last season, they needed to land a new playmaker, and they got a top one in Arango.


PSG Close On Erding

Paris Saint-Germain are set to sign Sochaux striker Mevlut Erding for a fee reportedly in the region of €10m. (Sky Sports)

Analysis: Does this mean that they’re ready to sell Guillaume Hoarau to Lyon? If they do hold on to Hoarau, the addition of Erding will certainly make PSG a lot more frightening in front of goal than they were last season, which will do wonders for their hopes to qualify for Europe.

Lille Agree Landreau Fee

Lille have agreed a fee of €2m for PSG goalkeeper Mickael Landreau. (Sky Sports)

Analysis: No worries for PSG though, as they’ve already lined up former Lyon keeper Gregory Coupet as a replacement.


Sporting Sign Fernandez

Sporting have signed Villarreal attacking midfielder Matias Fernandez for €4.5m. The Chile international has signed a four-year deal. (PortuGOAL.net)

Analysis: Villarreal took a sizable loss on Fernandez, and he may not have fulfilled the expectations that the club may have had for him, but this move could well be a bargain for Sporting.


Olympiakos To Make Owen Offer

Olympiakos could be set to make an offer for Michael Owen, and their wage package could be superior to those that may be offered to him by the likes of Everton, Aston Villa, and Hull. (Daily Mail)

Analysis: Certainly could be a tempting offer, not only for the money but because of the chance to play in the Champions League again. But, I’m inclined to believe that he’ll end up staying in the Premier League and that Everton will be the team to beat if they make a concrete offer.


Fenerbahce Bid For Vargas

Fenerbahce have offered Fiorentina €13m for defender Juan Manuel Vargas. (Transfer Market Web)

Analysis: If Fener meet Fiorentina’s €15m asking price, the offer might be a little hard to turn down, but tempting Vargas to take what might be considered a backwards step could be difficult.

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