Andrei Arshavin played a starring role in Zenit St. Petersburg’s UEFA Cup win over Rangers at City of Manchester Stadium, and it might not be the last time he steps foot on the pitch at Eastlands. Manchester City have reportedly put in a 10 million pound bid for the Russian playmaker, who has also been linked with the likes of Newcastle and Liverpool in the last several months.
Rumor Rating: 3 – Arshavin is arguably Russia’s best player, and is due for a move to a club in one of Europe’s major leagues, after spending his entire career thus far with Zenit.
City are also being linked with a potential player exchange + cash deal involving promising keeper Joe Hart. According to the Daily Mail, Tottenham are interested in making a move that would bring Hart to White Hart Lane and send six million pounds and Paul Robinson to Manchester.
Rumor Rating: 3 – While they’d be giving up quite a talent in Hart, Robinson is by no means washed up, so a change of scenery could give him a chance to fully reclaim his confidence and top form.
Middlesbrough are being linked with Alan Smith, who could be on his way out of Newcastle after a disappointing debut season, and with many players expected to come in the summer.
Rumor Rating: 4 – Smith needs to find a fit somewhere, not only position-wise, but team-wise as well, for the sake of having a chance at being a regular part of Fabio Capello’s plans.
Manchester United lost out on one Portuguese defender, but they could be after another one, as Valencia right-back Miguel is now reportedly on Sir Alex Ferguson’s wish list. Miguel moved to Spain from Benfica in a 7.5 million euro move in 2005, and could go to United for double that.
Rumor Rating: 3 – Miguel likes his nights out, but he’s proven to be a top-notch defender for club and country – 15 million euros is a more than fair price.
Valencia could also be set to offload midfielder Ever Banega. The 19-year old Argentine came to Spain for 18 million euros in January, but he’s run into some off-field issues, and could leave with Ronald Koeman having already been let go.
Rumor Rating: 4 – There’ll be some suitors for Banega, though they might prefer a loan move with a view for a permanent one, unless they can get a cut-rate price for him.
Could Juventus hijack Tottenham or Inter’s move for Samuel Eto’o? Reports now say that Juve could make a move for him that would send David Trezeguet to Barcelona.
Rumor Rating: 3 – It’s certainly possible – but if this is the case, can Spurs keep up if both Juve and Inter are seriously involved?
According to The Sun, Arsenal could be making a move for Argentine striker Mauro Zarate, who just wrapped up a loan spell at Birmingham, where he scored four goals for the relegated Blues. He could cost Arsenal as much as 20 million pounds, a fee that may or may not throw the Gunners off from pursuing an extremely promising talent.
Rumor Rating: 3 – Arsenal need to add some quality depth up front, and Zarate showed he’s Premier League material during his short stint with Birmingham, but will the potential asking price get in the way?
According to La Repubblica, Alberto Gilardino is on the verge of signing on with Fiorentina in a 15 million euro deal. After scoring 51 goals in his last two seasons at Parma, Gilardino has scored only 44 in his three seasons at AC Milan, and has only nine this season.
Rumor Rating: 5 – The possibility of a partnership between Adrian Mutu and Gilardino is pretty enticing – if Gila can rediscover the scoring touch that earned him a move to Milan, it could mean big things for La Viola next season and beyond.
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