Sunday 18 March 2018 / 03:01 AM

Fabregas Says No To United

With the start of the new football season just over a week away, time is running out for managers to get players in the door and prepare themselves for what is certainly going to be an eventful and tumultuous (not to mention long) season. Man City have probably been the biggest spenders of this summer’s transfer market so far, but their rivals for the title Chelsea and Man Utd still seem to be scrabbling around trying to sign the players they want. The window slams shut in about three weeks, so there isn’t long to go. This is good news for the gossip cravers though, as the rumour mill just rolls on and on; and will do until September 1st. Hold tight for this week’s hottest rumours from the world of football.

Fabregas Deal Far From Fabulous: Moyes Shops Closer To Home

Manchester United’s pursuit of Cesc Fabregas has been dealt a final deathly blow with the Spaniard clarifying that he has absolutely no intention of leaving the Nou Camp for the English champions. Given the necessity of Moyes making a splash in the transfer market this must be a huge blow to the Scot, who has pursued the ex-Arsenal skipper for the best part of the summer.

Moyes now has three weeks to get some players in and it now appears that he’s gone back to what he knows, with a joint bid mooted for Everton stars Marouane Fellaini and Leighton Baines. Everton have said that they will reject any such bid for their star performers, and consequently United are going to have to spend big to bring the Belgian and Englishman to Old Trafford.

The Red Devils have already had a £12m bid flatly rejected for left-back Baines, meaning that United would probably need to spend upwards of £40m to secure the signatures of both players.

Rooney Desperate To Depart

While Moyes desperately tries to get players through the door at Old Trafford, there’s one rather conspicuous one trying to get out. Despite Moyes’ persistent statements that the Englishman is not for sale, it’s quite clear that Wayne Rooney wants out, and after his manager confirmed that he sees the ex-Everton player as a backup to Robin van Persie, it’s not hard to see why.

United have rejected two bids from Chelsea for Rooney, and it is thought that they are extremely determined to prevent him from playing for such close Premier League rivals. The latest information suggests that even if Rooney fails to get his dream Chelsea move then he still wants out, and if the wantaway Croxteth man is to leave for the continent rich French clubs Monaco and PSG seem like the most likely destinations.

Barcelona On The Hunt For A Centre-Back

Barcelona have already spent a significant amount of money on strengthening their attacking options for this season, but it also appears as if the Spanish champions are in the market for a reliable defensive option too.

The Catalan giants have long been admirers of Chelsea defender David Luiz, and although Chelsea have maintained that the Brazilian is not for sale, it is eminently possible that Barca could join European champions Bayern Munich in the hunt for the footballing centre-half.

In the event of failing to procure the signature of Luiz, Barca apparently also quite fancy Liverpool defender Daniel Agger, who has quietly developed as quite a presence in the Anfield defence. The gossip suggests that Barca have made a big of around £15m; a fee that is unlikely to be enough to tempt Brendan Rodgers to part with one of his most reliable performers.

Besiktas Target One Misfiring Spurs Striker After Another

Turkish giant Besiktas have pursued Tottenham striker Emmanuel Adebayor for most of the summer, but it is thought that they have struggled to agree personal terms with the Togolese international and consequently shifted their attention to another Spurs frontman; the diminutive Jermain Defoe. Given that neither player enjoyed stellar seasons last year, it seems rather odd that Besiktas have pursued them both so hotly, but perhaps they know something that we don’t.

Spurs of course finally secured the signature of Valencia striker Roberto Soldado, and after paying a club record fee (£26m) to bring Soldado to White Hart Lane, it seems clear that Andre Villas-Boas is looking to build his team around the talented No.9. This seems to pave the way for the exit of at least one Spurs striker, and with the rumours afoot that AVB is after another frontman, both Defoe and Adebayor could foreseeably leave this summer; a fact that is unlikely to upset too many Spurs fans.

Fire Sale At Anzhi

Moneybags Russian outfit Anzhi Makhachkala have reacted to a poor start to the season in a particularly novel way: by putting their entire squad up for sale.

Billionaire owner Suleiman Kerimov has ploughed millions into the club after taking over in January 2011, but it now appears that he has decided to cut his cloth rather more wisely and is therefore trying to get some of the particularly high earners off his books.

Brazilian star Willian, Cameroonian and ex-Barcelona legend Samuel Eto’o and ex-Chelsea winger Yury Zhirkov are three of the players who have reportedly been told to find new clubs, and the news that Willian and Eto’o could be available for a cut-price is likely to prompt a bidding frenzy. Tottenham Hotspur are reportedly highly interested in signing Willian, but whether or not they will be able to match his astronomical wages remains to be seen.

And Some Other Rumours:

       Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has baulked at the price he has been quoted for Gareth Bale; prompting speculation that the Welshman could remain at Tottenham for another season

       Clint Dempsey has left Tottenham to join Seattle Sounders and is believed to be on a wage similar to David Beckham’s basic wage when the England legend was at LA Galaxy

       QPR goalkeeper Julio Cesar is on the verge of joining Fiorentina

       Everton are interested in Ajax defender Toby Alderweireld

       Ally McCoist is set to quit Rangers after Walter Smith resigned as chairman this week

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Seb Greenwood

CBS’s longest-serving contributor, Englishman Seb is our leading football correspondent, pulling no punches with his opinions on the Premier League and the international scene.

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