If you’re reading this, congratulations: you’re dealing with the football drought. Not only that, but I’ve only got good news for you this week. Not only are all the players and managers back at work after their holidays, meaning that the transfer season begins in earnest, but it’s also now less than a month until the season starts. Nevertheless, there is still plenty of time for managers to shape their sides before the season kicks off, so if you’re keen to see who your side might sign, then read on for this week’s rendition of the rumour mill.
Underwhelming Nani to go to the big club in the sky (Anzhi)
Russian outfit Anzhi Makhachkala seems to be where all the high profile players who can no longer cut it end up. Anzhi are obviously obscenely rich so the players’ wages are very high, and because Russia is somewhat out of the spotlight it can be a fairly pressure-free environment for a footballer to make hay while the sun shines. Enter Nani. The Portugese winger has flattered to deceive in his 5 seasons at Old Trafford, and with Moyes beginning his reign at United; and with only one year left on his contract, the Scot may well look to move Nani on.
Unwanted Gervinho to head for the slower paced Serie A
It’s fair to say that Gervinho’s transfer to Arsenal hasn’t exactly been what Arsene Wenger had in mind when he chose to spend over £10m on the forward from the Ivory Coast, and now that Arsenal reportedly have money to spend it should be of no surprise to anyone that they’ll be looking to get rid of some of their dead wood. The latest rumour is that Roma are willing to take Gervinho off Arsenal’s hands; first with a season long loan, and if all goes well, a permanent transfer worth around £7m.
Benteke swapping the Park for the Lane?
The big football news this week was that Belgian striker Christian Benteke – currently playing for Aston Villa – has itchy feet and wants to go a bigger club. The Belgian has gone and made it very official by putting in a transfer request, and it now looks likely that the striker will be sold to highest bidder. Quite whether that will be Spurs (who are certainly in the market for a striker) remains to be seen; but the North London club appear to be favourites to sign the unsettled star. Villa though, are looking for north of £25m for their starlet, which is thought will ward off penny-pinching Spurs owner Daniel Levy. This one could turn into a saga.
City to add firepower after Tevez exit
Many pundits reckon that the fact that Robin van Persie opted for a switch to Old Trafford instead of the Etihad last summer was the fundamental reason for United’s record 20th title, and with RVP weighing in with a haul of 26 goals last season it’s hard to disagree with that assessment. New City boss Manuel Pellegrini is clearly very keen to remedy that, and has already stated his desire to bring another striker to the Etihad, and is apparently an admirer of Alvaro Negredo who currently plays in for Sevilla. Given the spending power of City they certainly have the money to acquire the player, so this one may well have legs if Pellegrini is looking to bulk up his squad.
Suarez to escape the terrible English media somewhere else…in England
When Luis Suarez announced that it was his desire to leave Liverpool, his primary reason was that he felt that he was dealt with harshly by the English media, and wanted to go somewhere where he was able to be a bit less high profile. Most of us suspected that actually Suarez just wanted to go to a bigger club, and given the amount of eyelash-fluttering Suarez has been doing in the direction of Madrid; that suspicion would appear to be pretty correct. The latest big club who are interested in taking on the Uruguayan are Arsenal, who tested the waters at the beginning of this week with a £30m bid that was flat out rejected by Liverpool. All the rumours suggest that Arsenal have a lot of money to spend this summer, and therefore it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the Gunners come back with something higher sooner rather than later.
And some other rumours:
– Villa’s Darren Bent to Fulham
– Juventus’s Giaccherini to Sunderland
– Chelsea’s Ba to Fenerbahce
– Carlton Cole to Hull
– Sunderland’s Phil Bardsley to Fulham