Lahm Deal No Walk In The Park?
According to the Daily Mail, Manchester United could make a move for Bayern Munich defender Philipp Lahm, but any deal could hinge on whether or not United are willing to part with Park Ji-Sung, who is wanted by Bayern.
Analysis: With Bayern in pursuit of Ajax’s Gregory Van der Wiel, Lahm could be United’s for the taking if they really want him. Park has been a dependable squad member and stepped up in big moments on numerous occasions, but as the second leg of United’s Champions League quarterfinal against Bayern last season showed, having some experience and steadiness at right back can be a real difference maker.
Sunderland Swoop For Manchester Starlets
Sunderland are hopeful of finalizing a deal for young Manchester United forward Danny Welbeck within the coming days, and the club could also be set for a move for Manchester City defender Nedum Onuoha. (Daily Mail)
Analysis: Neither player looks to have a chance at many first-team opportunities at their respective clubs this coming season, so a move is in their best interests. Onuoha can be an immediate starter for Sunderland, Welbeck will greatly benefit from the chance to earn significant Premier League experience. And even if there’s a logjam at striker, Steve Bruce can find a place for him as a winger, so he should find opportunities there for the taking.
Birmingham Bid For Clyne
Birmingham City have made a bid of £1.25m for Crystal Palace right back Nathaniel Clyne. (The Sun)
Analysis: With Palace likely set for a battle to stay up this season, selling Clyne right now could be considered, given that being in League One wouldn’t do much for his value. However, he stands to have a lot more value to the club if he stays and helps their fight to stay up than if he leaves for what can be thought of as a rather small sum with his talent and potential in mind.
Wigan Loan Al-Habsi
Wigan have signed goalkeeper Ali Al-Habsi on a season-long loan from Bolton. (The Sun)
Analysis: With the injury cloud always looming and ready to rain down on Chris Kirkland, it’s a smart move for Wigan to land another goalkeeper with Premier League experience. Al-Habsi performed well for Bolton in his extended spell of action in the 2007/08 season, and he could step in and do a job if needed.
Barcelona Target Bilbao Star
Barcelona are pondering a move for Atletico Bilbao midfielder Javi Martinez. (Goal.com)
Analysis: Martinez is one of the brightest prospects in Spanish football (which is saying a lot, considering the young talent they have), and he was a top target for Liverpool last summer. With Barca looking to meet frustration on the Cesc Fabregas front yet again, he makes for a fine backup option, but Barcelona’s financial situation could price them out of a move unless some sales can be made soon.
Aduriz Set For Valencia
Valencia have agreed a €4m fee for Mallorca striker Aritz Aduriz, who will underdog a medical at his prospective new home tomorrow. (Sky Sports)
Analysis: David Villa he is not, but he is a reliable scorer. Valencia will certainly miss Villa and Silva, but they will survive and flourish, thanks to old faces (Juan Mata, Joaquin, and Pablo) and newer ones. Alejandro Dominguez should be a significant contributor in his first full season at the club after coming from Rubin Kazan in January, and Aduriz and fellow new signing Alberto Costa will also do their part to make sure that the two Davids aren’t missed too much.
Atletico Eye Godin
Atletico Madrid are interested in Villarreal center back Diego Godin, who‘s coming off of an impressive World Cup performance for Uruguay. Villarreal could sell the 24-year-old if an offer around €15m comes in. (Goal.com)
Analysis: If there’s any area that Atletico need to spend big, it’s at the back. The addition of Godin wouldn’t be a cure-all for their defensive woes, but it would significantly boost their hopes of having an all-around successful 2010-11 campaign.
Juve Enter Fray For Forlan
According to Italian news reports, Juventus could be set to make a €20m bid for Atletico Madrid star and World Cup Golden Ball winner Diego Forlan. (Goal.com)
Analysis: It makes a lot more sense for Juve to make a run at Forlan instead of Edin Dzeko with numerous factors in mind. The only negative when it comes to a Forlan deal is his age, but when you’re capable of reaching a goal total as high or higher than your age, well, it’s just a number.
Milan Agree Papastathopoulos Deal
AC Milan and Genoa have come to an agreement over Greek defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos. AC Milan will have the 22-year-old on loan next season and then sign him permanently for €7m next summer. (Transfer Market Web)
Analysis: Another much-needed step towards giving the squad a much younger look. Papastathopoulos (say it five times fast!) was a steady performer for a Genoa defense that was one of the worst in Serie A, and he has the potential to be a key cog in Milan’s back line for years to come.
Roma Look To Seal Burdisso Deal
After Inter Milan rejected their initial bid of €3.5m for defender Nicolas Burdisso, Roma are hopeful that an improved bid of €6m will be enough to land the Argentine international. (Goal.com)
Analysis: Inter may want €10m, but with Roma not having much room to maneuver in the transfer market right now, Inter shouldn’t find it hard to find a compromise over a player who Roma needs a lot more than they do at this point.
Fiorentina Close On Insua
Fiorentina have agreed a fee of £5m with Liverpool for left back Emiliano Insua. (Daily Mail)
Analysis: Liverpool could’ve certainly benefited from having him in the side next season, but he should step in and be an immediate starter for Fiorentina.