WITH LITTLE OVER two weeks until the summer transfer window slams shut and the season opener a matter of days away, Premier League managers are working feverishly to seal those acquisitions that will mean the difference between fans chanting their names in the stands and the c.
Since taking over the reigns at Liverpool, Brendan Rodgers has looked to instil the passing style which won Swansea so many admirers last year and, having already brought in Fabio Borini and Joe Allen, the Anfield boss wants to add two more young players with big futures in the game.
When Turkish midfielder Nuri Sahin made the switch from Borussia Dortmund to Real Madrid last summer, big things were expected from the 22-year-old. However, a year on, Sahin has made just four La Liga appearances and, according to The Daily Star, Liverpool have approached Madrid about the possibility of a loan move.
Spanish attacker Tello had a breakthrough season at Barcelona last season, but is out of contract at the Catalan club at the end of next season and Rodgers will also attempt to lure him to England for around €9m.
Meanwhile, Reds defender Daniel Agger, who has been the subject of interest from 2012 title winners Manchester City, has made a plea to remain on Merseyside.
“I can’t imagine playing for any other club in England but you never know if the club think it’s better to sell me,” the Danish international said.
I know there has been interest from Manchester City, but I don’t know what Liverpool are responding to it. I am fine with my situation.”
Seemingly desperate to bring in Robin van Persie despite the obvious fact that Manchester United need to strengthen in other areas of the pitch, The Daily Mail are reporting that Alex Ferguson has met with his old friend Arsene Wenger to iron out their differences and agree on a deal for the Dutch striker.
The Gunners’ forward line has already been bolstered by the arrivals of Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud and Beligian international Kevin Mirallas could also be helping to fill the void left if and when Van Persie bids farewell. Goal.com quote the 24-year-old Olympiacos man as saying that his agent has held talks over a move.
Another priority for Fergie is the left full-back position, where Patrice Evra has been off his best for some time and is without competition for a starting spot.
Leighton Baines was the player mooted to be on his way but Everton’s €25m asking price means they could turn to Neil Taylor of Swansea as an alternative.
The 22-year-old former non-league defender featured for Team GB at the London Games and would cost five times less than Baines, say The Mirror.
Andre Villas Boas is keen to stamp his print on Tottenham Hotspurs but adding to his squad has proved problematic in recent weeks. The latest two players to turn down the bright lights of White Hart Lane are Bologna’s Uruguayan midfielder Gaston Ramirez and French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
With Luka Modric’s Spurs days numbered and David Bentley finally getting the boot, Ligue 1 pair Yann M’Vila, a former target of Arsenal, and Toulouse midfielder Etienne Capoue have risen to the top of AVB’s wishlist.
Relegated side Wolverhampton Wanderers have clearly lost their mind. Not content with turning down two reasonable bids from Sunderland for Scottish forward Steven Fletcher, they have rejected a third one of €15MILLION for the 25-year-old.
Cox with Forest chairman Omar Al Hasawi. Credit: NottinghamForest.co.uk
Finally, Ireland’s Simon Cox, who tweeted this tribute to Shay Given this morning, is officially a Nottingham Forest player, the club has confirmed.
“Sean O’Driscoll highlighted that he wanted to bring in a man with a proven goal-scoring record and Simon has that pedigree,” said club chairman Omar Al Hasawi.
“I am sure he will prove to be an excellent addition to our squad as we look to take the Club forward.”