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Transfer Rumors (29 Jan 09): Tottenham bid for long-time Manchester City target Santa Cruz, Real Madrid and Manchester United tussle for Wigan star Valencia, Arshavin’s Arsenal deal almost done, and more



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The clock is tick-tick-ticking, and the end of the January transfer window is one day closer. If you haven’t signed that top target by now, you need to get a move on, because just like the month has flown by, Monday evening will be here before you know it.

With the futures of several big names still undecided, you can expect at least a few marquee deals to take place between now and 5 p.m. Monday, but who will be on the move and who won’t?


Not wrapping up Roque Santa Cruz as quickly as had been expected could see Manchester City have to pay more than they’d intended or lose out completely, as Tottenham have lined up a £20m move for the Blackburn star. (Daily Mail)

Analysis: I was a little surprised that they hadn’t been linked with him much throughout January, but Tottenham have a need, and they’re trying to find the best person to fill it. With available options limited, they might be forced to pay over and above.

Of course, if other speculation is to be believed, City and Tottenham are duking it out for Robbie Keane, who was a late sub in Liverpool’s draw at Wigan yesterday. (Tribalfootball)

Analysis: Rafa’s choice to put him on for only a few minutes certainly won’t do anything to quell the speculation, so if he plays little to no role in Sunday’s crunch showdown with Chelsea, you can expect the deadline day headlines to be full of Keane-related rumors.

Antonio Valencia is certainly a wanted man. Last night, Real Madrid tabled a £12m bid for him, but Wigan have told them to up to £18m. Keeping tabs on the situation are Manchester United, who might soon lodge a bid. (The Mirror)

Analysis: United would probably prefer to wait until the summer for him, but if they don’t want to risk losing out, they might have no other choice but to enter the fray if Real do up their bid.

Arsene Wenger has said that Arsenal’s move for Andrei Arshavin is 90% done. (Daily Mail)

Analysis: We should already know by now not to bank on that other 10% coming through, but maybe all parties are finally ready to finish this thing.

Bolton have tabled a £12m bid for Sporting star Miguel Veloso, but with Sporting’s asking price higher than what they’re willing to pay, Gary Megson knows that the odds aren’t in favor of a deal happening. (Sporting Life)

Analysis: It’s hard to see Sporting back off of their valuation when a few other clubs are willing to pay it. You do have to wonder if any of those clubs are going to step in with a bid right now, or if they’re not particularly threatened by Bolton’s interest.

Fulham are lining up a £3m move for Tottenham midfielder Tom Huddlestone. (Daily Mail)

Analysis: Huddlestone won’t be the last guy to leave White Hart Lane before the window closes, if Harry Redknapp can find suitors for a few more of the players that he doesn’t want/need. Any takers for Darren Bent?


Liverpool’s Xabi Alonso is a target for Real Madrid presidential hopeful Florentino Perez, who also has his eyes on Kaka and Cesc Fabregas. And the man he wants to lead them all? Arsene Wenger. (The Mirror)

Analysis: Well, Arsene has been interested in Alonso for quite a while, so maybe here’s his chance to finally manage him.


Vfb Stuttgart say that they have received no bids for Mario Gomez after reports linked Manchester City with the German international striker. (Sky Sports)

Analysis: You already know that he’s going to Bayern Munich in a season or two anyway, so…


Grenoble could be open to selling midfielder Soufiane Feghouli in the summer, but for now, they’ve put a £27.5m asking price on the 19-year-old, who has been linked with Chelsea, Liverpool, Arsenal, and Juventus. (Sky Sports)

Analysis: There’s bargaining power in safety, and Grenoble are currently well clear of the drop zone. Stay up, and they can command a high fee for him. Go down, and expect a lot less.


Motherwell have agreed a fee with Cardiff over highly-rated striker Chris Porter. (Sky Sports)

Analysis: Great move for Cardiff, who need more firepower to aid their promotion push. It’s also a great move for Porter, who had a lot of success in League One and League Two before a successful season and a half at Motherwell.

If you’ve spotted a juicy rumor that we’ve missed, post it in the comments along with a link to the source.

And if you want to keep up with all of the latest confirmed transfers from several of Europe’s top leagues, check out the updated January 2009 transfer lists.