The ‘expected’ moves are starting to happen:
Arsenal offload Pires to Villareal while bringing in Tomas Rosicky from B. Dortmund. A classy player replacing another classy one. Arsenal still need a central midfielder and a defender, as Silva as getting old and Campbell is getting useless. At least Henry is still staying, and there’s always Walcott and Fabregas to cheer up the Gunners.
Liverpool send off Morientes to Valencia, and their search for a 20-goal striker continues. Dirk Kuyt (or his agent) have been making noises about wanting to come to Liverpool, but for now Benitez isn’t interested. Rumors point to Darren Bent and Defoe.
Everton sign Andrew Johnson for 8.5 mil. If you’ve alread heard about Wigan and Bolton signing him, don’t worry – Crystal Palace turned this transfer into an auction, with 8.5 mil bids accepted from Wigan, Bolton and Everton while leaving the final destination upto Johnson (who ended up choosing Goodison Park). If he scores 15 goals next season, maybe Everton won’t be fighting relegation again.
Chelsea have accepted a bid from Wigan for Robert Huth for 5.5 mil (as expected). Problem for Wigan is that this might turn out to be another Andy Johnson saga with Huth unaware of Wigan’s interest – and if he decides not to go there, Wigan would have lost out on the second of the two signings they had bragged about earlier this week. In addition, Shevchenko’s transfer request has been accepted by Milan whose reasoning for wanting to move to England is that he wants his kid to grow up learning English. Hmmmm. Chelsea waits.
Tottenham continue to be linked with players left and right but have yet to sign anyone. Davids is bound to be replaced, while with Mido’s departure Jol would be looking for another striker, even with Berbatov’s signing.
Manchester United still need a hard-tackling, box-to-box midfielder that will help them replace Keano. Zokora and Diarra are in the frame, but neither have been formally contacted by United. In fact, with no sounds coming out of Lyon either it seems that either United are in serious negotiations or that their interest is now elsewhere – perhaps Inter and Cambiasso? Somehow I doubt it.
Less than 2 weeks to go before the World Cup. For United at least, this looks to be another disappointing transfer season. If anyone cares to remember, we lost out on Essien last year, and on Ballack this year. Add Kenyon, Ronaldinho (because of Kenyon) and Robben to the mix – and add Obi Mikel too, who is reported to move to Chelsea for 12 mil (2 going to Lyn Oslo and 10 to United). You have 6 people United have lost to Chelsea, including 4 players moving directly to Chelsea instead of United (you could have argued that Madrid wanted Ballack but with their problems they were never in a position to go after him).