Chelsea are set to battle it out with Serie A champions Juventus and Ligue 1 big money spenders PSG for the signature of Uruguay defender Alvaro Pereira.
The 26 year old right back has been targeted by Chelsea as the successor to Jose Bosingwa who has released this summer. The Blues are in desperate need of a right back as Paolo Ferreira is also expected to follow his fellow countryman Bosingwa through the door out of Stamford Bridge leaving them thin in that department. Serbian stopper Branislav Ivanovic who has frequently been asked to play at the right of defense, is eager to play at the center next season which subsequently has made the signing of a full back a top priority now.
The European Champions have been linked to plenty already this summer which includes Inter’s Maicon and Ajax’s Gregory Van der Wiel. But new Blues boss Roberto di Matteo has zeroed in on the Porto player and is expected to fight off all interest to sign him. Pereira, who is currently in his country, has a release clause of £24m in his contract but a fee in the region of £15m could prove enough to prize him away from Estadio do Dragao.
“I do not know what will happen,” Pereira is quoted as saying to Italian TV station Sky Sport 24.
“I’m still in South America and when I return to Portugal I have to talk with Porto to decide on my future. But for now I am player of Porto.”
Russian star Alan Dzagoev, who has been praised by Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, is being followed by Premier League club Tottenham according to the player’s father.
The 22 year old scored 3 goals during Russia’s brief Euro adventure before they were sent crashing out by the Greeks in the group stage itself. The CSKA midfielder grabbed many eyeballs during the event and has been linked to a host of clubs including Spurs’ London rivals Arsenal. However, it has emerged that Spurs have followed up on their interest and are keen to secure a deal for the talented attacking midfielder.
Dzagoev’s father revealed the interest from clubs across Europe but is wary of a move to England at such an early stage of his career. He said, ‘I don’t know if he will stay at CSkA. There are offers – from Spurs and other foreign clubs.
‘But I tell him not to hurry. Yury Zhirkov ran off to Chelsea and sat on the bench.’
Dazgoev’s current contract was suppose to end this year but the young star is believed to have been talked into signing a one year extension at the Moscow club. However, that is not going to deter Andre Villas Boas from chasing the highly rated Russian after he was appointed manager earlier in the day at the White Hart Lane.
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini remains coy over his interest in Arsenal striker Robin Van Persie and sounded doubtful over chances of a possible transfer this summer.
The Dutchman has been at the center of transfer speculation this summer after rejecting a contract extension at Arsenal earlier. Mancini was keen on bringing the 28 year old to Eastlands this summer but Van Persie’s father ruled out any move to a direct competitor of the Gunners. Arsene Wenger also came out to quash all rumors and remains confident that the striker would eventually sign an extension and commit his future to the club.
The Premier League champions have been uncharacteristically quiet this summer in the transfer market but the last season’s Golden Boot winner of Premier League is believed to be on top of the transfer target list.
Mancini said: ‘Van Persie? He is an Arsenal player and I don’t want to disrespect Wenger.
‘We will start the preseason in five days, it’s unlikely there will be major changes in such a short time.’
The Italian also went on to downplay the uncertainty over Bosnian striker Edin Dzeko’s future at the club. The City boss remains confident that Dzeko would stay despite intense interest from Serie A side Juventus. However, he sounded less optimistic about Serbian defender Aleksandr Kolaro’v future at the Manchester club.
The same goes for Dzeko, his farewell is not expected,’ Mancini added.
‘The interest of Juventus for him? It will be difficult that Edin goes away.
‘Kolarov? I myself wanted him to City, he is a great player. If it depends on me, he would remain at the City.
‘I’d love to have him again in the next season but I cannot impose myself on his will”
Everton are trying hard to hold on to their English full back Leighton Baines by placing a high transfer fee on the player amidst strong interest from Manchester United.
The 27 year old is being considered as the replacement of Patrice Evra at Old Trafford after the Frenchman struggled throughout last season. Baines expressed his joy at being linked to United when contacted prior to the Euros but stopped short of confirming his departure.
‘The United link is flattering. There is no harm in people talking about it because it is a great club. But I’m at a great club as well, a club that I love.
‘Would it be hard to turn United down? I’m not letting my focus shift to that while I am in camp [with England]. I’m focused on what I’m doing at the moment. Would it be hard to leave Everton? Yes, obviously. You know what it means.”
Everton have set a £17m pricetag on the left back which is believed to be beyond United’s evaluation of the player. Sir Alex Ferguson has prioritized the purchase of a left back this summer and both Baines and Valencia’s Jordi Alba have been linked to the club. The asking price of the Everton playeris likely to put off any interest from Fergie and his team and could spell good news for youngstar Fabio da Silva who might finally get the break into the first team on a more regular basis.
French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris could spark a major bidding war among Premier League sides Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham after the Lyon’s president confirmed his availability this summer.
Premier League trio of Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham are said to be keen on the 25 year old after the player declared his desire to move to England this transfer window. Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has been a long term admirer of the Lyon custodian and would be tempted to sign him to provide ample competition for the place between the sticks.
New Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers is exploring the possibility of signing the Frenchman as Pepe Reina could be set for an exit with AC Milan said to be hot favorites to land the 29 year old. Tottenham are also in the search for a replacement for the ageing Brad Friedel and could compete with the others for highly rated Ligue 1 shot stopper.
Lyon President confirmed that the French captain would be allowed to leave this summer if interested clubs are prepared to meet their evaluation. Jean-Michel Aulas told TF1: “Lloris can go, but only for a decent price in relation to the market.”