June 30, 2009
Barcelona described Manchester City's offer for Samuel Eto'o as "stratospheric" and that is a word that could also easily describe the Cameroon international's signing-on demands.
The Sun report that the 28-year-old is holding out for a £12.5m signing on fee from the Premier League club; that's on top of a wages of £250,000-per-week that would make him the highest-paid player in the world.
The Daily Mirror claim the striker's demands are threatening to derail his move to Eastlands, although Barcelona could rescue the deal if they give up £15m of the £30m fee as a lucrative golden handshake.
Eto'o's lawyer Josep Maria Mesalles has reportedly told Barca his client will stay at the Camp Nou unless he is paid off with a share of the king-sized fee.
Liverpool striker Fernando Torres has told the Daily Mail that he would love to play alongside David Villa at Anfield and has lamented the lack of transfer cash available to manager Rafa Benitez.
To make matters worse the The Independent report that Reds defender Alvaro Arbeloa could be off to Real Madrid and the The Sun claim that Spanish midfielder Xabi Alonso could follow him to the Bernabeu.
Tottenham Hotspur could scupper Roman Pavlyuchenko's proposed move to Villarreal due to their unrealistic transfer demands, according to The Times. Despite the fact the Spurs don't want to keep Pavlyuchenko, and the striker doesn't want to stay, the Premier League club are still asking for cash, Sebastien Eguren and Marcos Senna.
However, that could all be a smoke screen as the Daily Telegraph claim that Spurs want to use Pavlyuchenko as bait to lure Roma striker Mirko Vucinic to White Hart Lane.
Vicinic, the 25-year-old captain of Montenegro, can play either as a twin striker or out wide, but if he cannot be lured to North London, Spurs have joined the growing queue of clubs chasing Swedish striker Marcus Berg.
In the less glamorous reaches of the League Championship there is news that former Newcastle United owner Freddie Shepherd could return to rescue the club with a £60m offer to buy out Mike Ashley, according to the Daily Star.
Shepherd, who was ousted by Ashley two years ago, is the favourite to resume control ahead of an American-based consortium, despite offering £40m less than the asking price.
June 29, 2009
Monday morning's UK newspaper are full of the usual rumour, conjecture and half-truths, but hiding in amongst the wibble is the occasional intriguing report.
Starting with The Guardian it is reported that Manchester City have made a formal £25.5m bid for Barcelona striker Samuel Eto'o and put together a "stratospheric offer" to make him the highest-paid player in English football.
The Sun put a number to that pay deal, claiming that Eto'o has been offered £250,000 a week which would make him the world's highest-paid player.
In The Independent former Chelsea manager Phil Scolari has broken his silence on his time at Stamford Bridge and accused Didier Drogba, Petr Cech and Michael Ballack of stabbing him in the back.
In The Times Wayne Rooney has vowed to fill the void left by Cristiano Ronaldo and Carlos Tevez's departures from Manchester United.
Sounds good, but behind the promise is a thinly veiled criticism of Sir Alex Ferguson, with Rooney claiming that he'd have made a bigger impact for the club had he been played in his "right position" - centre-forward, rather than on the wing.
In the Daily Star it is reported that Fergie will return to work on Monday after his summer holiday and will focus his attention on signing Karim Benzema.
But the paper warns that he could face a challenge from Arsenal in his efforts to land the Lyon striker.
Also in the Star is an interesting report suggesting that Greek giants Olympiacos have launched a bid to sign Newcastle striker Michael Owen - which could be a set back for Hull and Stoke who are also keen on the former England player.
The Sun> claim that Germany have cranked up the mind games ahead of Monday night's Euro Under-21 final with England by switching to red shirts.
The Germans were given first choice on shirts and eventually opted for red - the colour England wore when they beat Germany in the 1966 World Cup final.
June 28, 2009
Finally, something for Arsenal fans to get excited about. A big name and big money involved too. The target? Lyon's Karim Benzema, although a bid for the Frenchman might mean the end of Emmanuel Adebayor's career at the Emirates.
We brought you the story yesterday that AC Milan had been in contact with Arsenal about the Togo striker - but now the News of the World think that Arsene Wenger is lining up a replacement for him already.
£30m could be enough to tempt Lyon into a sale and, with around £24m expected for Adebayor, Arsenal could be doing a great piece of business. Benzema is young, strong and a great finisher and, best of all for Wenger, he's French and apparently loves the idea of linking up with Le Prof.
It's Sunday, so the News of the World have gone into overdrive with their transfer scoops and Manchester City are also high on the agenda.
What would you do with £55m? Spend it on Samuel Eto'o and Carlos Tevez of course. City are reported to have nailed the signing of the Cameroon star for weekly wages of around £200k per week and Tevez will follow. You have to wonder if the Argentine is slightly concerned though. The signing of Roque Santa Cruz, Eto'o and the host of attacking talent already on the bench at Eastlands mean he could just be swapping one seat for another, and the ones at Old Trafford are much more comfy.
The Sunday Mail think that Man Utd might come to terms with Arsenal's interest in Benzema by turning to Sergio Aguero instead - although you'd imagine Tevez might have a word in his ear. £45m isn't enough for his buyout clause, so they might have to up their bid; but £14m should be enough to seal the long awaited deal for Wigan's Antonio Valencia.
The papers disagree over Chelsea's targets. The Sunday Express think the Blues will go back in for French star Franck Ribery for £50m; but the News of the World reckon £50m is much better spent on Alex Pato. Plus another £50m on a couple of others: Yuri Zhirkov and Andrea Pirlo perhaps.
Fernando Torres has urged manager Rafael Benitez to try and sign one of his Spanish international team-mates David Villa, David Silva or Juan Mata, who all play for Valencia - who could do with the cash; but Jermaine Pennant could be on his way out, to Everton, which would make him even more popular than he already is.
While everyone else takes great pleasure in the fact that Newcastle have bodged things up so much that they'll still be paying Michael Owen and Mark Viduka even after their contracts expire, the Sunday Mirror have gone with the news that owner Mike Ashley might just sell the club soon.
And the rest of the gossip can mostly be found in the News of the World, including: Joe Cole and Jose Bosingwa set to leave Chelsea; Aston Villa's £5m swoop for German international Tim Borowski, who can't get a game at Bayern Munich now; Stoke's £6m bid to bring Newcastle's Nigerian striker Obafemi Martins to the club and Steve Bruce's attempts to bring in Steven Davies at Sunderland for £5m.
And finally, leave it to Kaka to dismiss Man City's hopes of bringing in star players. Ok, they might have sealed a stunning deal for Eto'o and Tevez, but the Brazilian has said he wanted to join a club with ''history'' and ''ambition''. So that's why he signed for Notts County... I mean Real Madrid.
June 27, 2009
All the talk may be of players arriving at the Bernabeu, especially now the Cristiano Ronaldo deal has been confirmed, but what of the ones who are already there? Someone has to make room and it looks like it could be Ruud van Nistelrooy.
The Dutch striker smashed in goals all over the place (as long as it was inside the penalty area) when he was with Man Utd, so now Big Sam's Blackburn have come in for him, say The Independent. Somebody has to replace Roque, but the Daily Mail would like to think it'll be Toulouse forward Andre-Pierre Gignac instead.
In a day when the big four showed very little interest in signing anyone, the papers are full of gossip from the rest of the Premier League sides looking to boost their squads.
Try not to get too excited, but this could mean that Fulham sign Marseille midfielder Bolo Zenden, 32, who is available on a free transfer. The Sun says that 'Woy' is keen to add some experience to his side, but could also go for Middlesbrough's 27-year-old striker Tuncay Sanli. The Daily Express say that deal will cost around £5m though.
Birmingham have signed a fair few players this week, but they're not done yet. Incredibly they might be keen to take Lee Bowyer out of West Ham, 24-year-old midfielder Ferne Snoyl - out of contract at Dutch side RKC Waalwijk - and very strangely, Patrick Vieria out of Inter, say the Daily Mail.
The Sun say that Sol Campbell is being targeted as the new Martin Laursen at Aston Villa. MON might want to look a little younger, perhaps David Wheater from Boro?, as the prospect of playing Europa League football with Villa next season is a big pull apparently.
Everton are getting all excited because they hardly ever sign anyone and now they could be set to snap up midfielder Stephane M'Bia from Rennes for £6m. The Daily Mail have had this one in the bag for quite a while now, but also throw in the nugget that Fiorentina are vying with Spanish club Atletico Madrid for Toffee star Steven Pienaar.
Wolves are keen to start their Premier League season well, says the Daily Star, and are waiting for Reading striker Kevin Doyle to decide between Fulham, Bolton, Sunderland or themselves on a £6.5m move.
And Sunderland - oh they of some fairly sizeable cash sums - are in the market for a new striker, so if the Doyle deal dies, they'd just be buoyant to bag Bent.. Darren of course. Although the Daily Mirror say that Spurs have placed the most unrealistic price tag in history on the ex-Charlton man, at £18m. That's about £18m per goal.
Finally, some transfer woe courtesy of the Sun. Spurs could be set to be dragged through court over allegations that an unlicensed agent was involved in Jermain Defoe's transfer.
While in Birmingham, Alex McLeish is spitting over the fact that owner David Sullivan signed 32-year-old defender Giovanny Espinoza without consulting him. The Scot turned down the player, only to find him on the books a few weeks later and the bad news for Blues' fans.. Sullivan insists there are three more imminent signings. Although Alex has no idea.
June 26, 2009
For the day's transfer news and latest rumours, join our On The Move blog for the latest updates.
The Daily Telegraph's lead football story this Friday concerns Arsenal and Cesc Fabregas with both player and club seeking to calm fears that he is ready to quit the club.
While on Confederations Cup duty with Spain, Fabregas was quoted by various Spanish media outlets speaking in glowing terms about Barcelona and Real Madrid, and bemoaning the lack of trophies at Arsenal.
But with his tour of duty over the PR spin is in full-effect and the Gunners and their captain are insisting his future is with Arsenal. Sadly for them, once a rumour has started it's very tough to stop.
In the Daily Mirror it is reported that Sir Alex Ferguson is "on red alert" to make a £40m bid for Spain striker David Villa after Barcelona opened an auction on Thursday night for the Valencia striker who we all thought was going to Real Madrid.
In other United news, the Daily Star claim the Red Devils are a step closer to landing £30m-valued Lyon striker Karim Benzema after the French club placed a £15m bid with Porto for Lisandro Lopez to replace the 21-year-old French star.
The Daily Mirror claim a deal to secure Antonio Valencia from Wigan could see Portuguese winger Nani leave Old Trafford as a make-weight.
And The Times report that Gremio have rejected a request from United to take midfielder Douglas Costa on a three-week trial. Why? The Brazilian club want a straight cash bid, and are thought to be hoping to rake in around £17m.
In transfer news the Daily Express report that next on the hit-list for Man City manager Mark Hughes is Inter Milan's Brazilian right-back Maicon, with £10m the fee mooted.
And in the Daily Star there are reports that Stoke, linked on Thursday with moves for Dean Ashton and Michael Owen, are now planning a £5m raid for Newcastle striker Obafemi Martins.
And finally, in the Daily Express Stuart Pearce has hinted that he is aiming to step up from being England Under-21s manager and succeed Fabio Capello as senior boss. First things first, Stu: beat Sweden in the Euro U21s semi-final tonight and we then we'll see.
For the day's transfer news and latest rumours, join our On The Move blog for the latest updates.
June 25, 2009
Those wheels of transfer business are churning and turning but we're still at an impasse when it comes to the big deals for the big names. Real Madrid and Manchester United dominate Wednesday's agenda, seemingly in the absence of any major players being involved.
For the day's transfer news and latest rumours, join our On The Move blog for the latest updates.
The Daily Mirror says that Real Madrid are set to hijack Manchester United's bid to land Karim Benzema after claiming they have given up the chase for Valencia's David Villa. Which looks to these eyes remarkably like an article printed in Spanish tabloid Marca yesterday...
Then there's Sergio Aguero, targeted for £45m by Manchester United if you believe The Independent. Maradona's son-in-law is the latest link with that Cristiano Ronaldo-sized £80m in their pocket. Though should anyone want to now buy Ronaldo, it will cost £1bn. That's the buy-out clause that the Daily Telegraph say Real Madrid have placed on their soon-to-be most prized asset.
Franck Ribery is another star linked with Real Madrid. The Times take the line that Chelsea have already given up hope on signing him. Liverpool midfielder Javier Mascherano continues his dalliance with Barcelona after Lionel Messi is quoted in The Sun saying he wants to play alongside his pal at the Camp Nou. The same article contains further mention of Alvaro Arbeloa's seemingly inevitable move to Real Madrid.
Manchester City will be forced to pay big for Joleon Lescott, say The Sun of the approach for Everton's defender. Chelsea will be waving goodbye to Deco and Ricardo Carvalho when Inter complete a £10m double deal for the pair. Defender Maicon may well be part of the deal discussed with Inter director Marco Branca when he flies over, say the Mirror.
The same paper say Tottenham want Atletico Madrid midfielder Maxi Rodriguez. £4m was the fee.
Elsewhere, in a UK newspaper environment dominated by Wimbledon fortnight and the impending Ashes series, there is scant mention of the USA's glory victory over Spain at the Confederations Cup. Poor form, really.
For the day's transfer news and latest rumours, join our On The Move blog for the latest updates.
June 10, 2009
Liverpool's cash crisis has hit the summer spending plans of manager Rafa Benitez and it looks like the Spaniard will have to shop in the bargain basement during the transfer window.
Benitez will now have to ditch a hit-list which included the likes of Gareth Barry, David Villa and Carlos Tevez, according to The Sun. Barry has already joined Manchester City and with Tevez and Villa out of his price range Benitez finds himself scouting players such as Middlesbrough striker Tuncay and Portsmouth defender Sylvain Distin.
To add to the Reds Boss' woes The Sun also report that midfielder Javier Mascherano has stunned Liverpool by admitting he wants to quit Anfield and join Champions League winners Barcelona, saying "if a club like Barcelona want you, obviously a player will say he wants to play there".
Meanwhile, over at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea are ready to make Sergio Aguero the highest paid player in the Premier League after making a record breaking move for the Atletico Madrid striker.
The Daily Star report that the Blues are closing in on a £40m deal for the Argentina international, who scored 17 goals in 34 appearances for Atletico last season, which could include a £160,000-per-week pay packet for the 21-year-old.
Over at Arsenal it looks like it might be case of one in and one out; the Daily Mirror claim that manager Arsene Wenger is ready to offload defender William Gallas once he completes the signing of £11m Ajax centre-back Thomas Vermaelen. Juventus and AC Milan are reportedly interested in signing the 32-year-old.
Harry Redknapp will be his usual busy self in the transfer window with a number of players expected to be bought and sold at Tottenham Hotspur over the summer. The Daily Mirror claim that Brazilian goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes could be the first out of the door after being offered back to PSV Eindhoven for £8m.
Also on his way is striker Darren Bent. The Daily Express report that the England international could be heading to Sunderland for £8m and fellow forward Roman Pavlyuchenko is also available for £12m.
Coming in through the revolving door at White Hart Lane could be Atletico Madrid midfielder Maxi Rodriguez and Galatasaray winger Arda Turan, according to the Daily Mail.
Rodriguez, 28, has a wealth of experience playing in the top flight in Spain and is regarded as one of the best left-sided players in La Liga while Turan, who is right-footed but plays on the left, has been voted one of the best young players in the world.
West Ham United chief executive Scott Duxbury has told the Daily Telegraph that the club are close to making three major signings and has dismissed claims the club remains in financial trouble despite this week's takeover. However, there are reports that England defender Matthew Upson could be on his way out of Upton Park after putting his Essex mansion up for sale.
And finally... Croatia coach, Slaven Bilic, is "very interested" in holding talks with Portsmouth over the club's vacant managerial position, according to his agent and The Guardian.
June 9, 2009
It's a bulging sack of news items on Tuesday, despite everyone being so excited about England's game against Andorra - which may be in a half full stadium due to a lovely tube strike in London.
With the Kaka deal now done and dusted and every one of us desperate for Cristiano Ronaldo to disappear, there will be plenty of chat about David Villa at Valencia who is bound to leave due to their financial troubles.
Just like with Kaka, it seems that Real Madrid and Chelsea are leading the battle. That's what is says in The Sun. That paper suggests Chelsea will offer £38m for the striker while Real will bid £24m plus striker Alvaro Negredo. However, Villa does not want to leave Spain.
Conflicting reports relating to another Villa, Aston that is. They have been linked with a contract for Michael Owen with the Daily Mirror reporting that Randy Lerner has already sanctioned a £3m wage packet. Shame, then, that Martin O'Neill has rubbished those stories.
With Kaka on his way to Real, AC Milan will now look to replace him with a new star man. And the Daily Mirror says that means Arsenal will have competition to sign Edin Dzeko from Vfl Wolsburg.
But could Arsenal have to fork out more in wages to Andrei Arshavin? Well, the player's agent wants the club to cover his tax bill after the threshold was raised by the UK government to 50 per cent for high earners. It's in the Daily Mail.
Reports of Liverpool having to downscale their targets could well be true if the papers are anything to go by. The Daily Mail confirms that Sylvain Distin is a top target for Rafael Benitez - but Villa could nip in to sign him for £2m.
And it now also seems Napoli's Ezequiel Lavezzi may not be joining Liverpool, despite his agent's claims of a firm offer on the table. The Daily Mail has Rafa stating they have made no bid for the player.
With Roman Pavlyuchenko failing to win favour with Spurs boss Harry Redknapp he seems certain to move on. The Daily Mirror believes he will go to AS Roma.
But there's a better story in the Daily Mail. The paper thinks 'Arry can get Ruud van Nistelrooy from Real Madrid for a mere £1.25m.
Luis Antonio Valenica's move to Manchester United from Wigan seems to be a case of "When" rather than "If", but the Daily Mirror claims the player is getting impatient. Wigan want £20m. United won't pay £20m. Now the player wants to be sold or he'll wait to go on a free.
Down the Premier League table, and newcomers Wolves are to strengthen their defence with Ronald Zubar for £2.5m from Marseille. It's in the Daily Mirror.
And West Ham could be set for a spending spree after they were taken over on Monday. The Daily Mirror reports that Gianfranco Zola has money to burn and will start by signing Inter Milan midfielder Luis Jimenez on loan with a view to a permanent transfer. The Chilean attacking midfielder can play on the right wing or up front.
The Daily Mirror also links Rennes right-back Rod Fanni. In contrast, the Daily Mail claims there is no money to spend.
Steve Bruce may well get a quick snubbing after joining Sunderland, with the Daily Mail claiming Paul Scharner has rejected the chance to move with him for £6m.
Blackburn will move for Austria striker Marc Janko to replace Roque Santa Cruz, according to the Daily Mail.
And finally... some lovely stories coming in about Newcastle United's attempted sale. Now, if you give out an email address you are simply asking for trouble. So that's what Magic Mike Ashley has done. Offers for the club so far? £10, tickets to see Oasis at Sunderland's ground and a curly wurly... Check out The Sun.
June 8, 2009
Wigan Athletic winger Antonio Valencia has become the latest bone of contention between Manchester United and Real Madrid, with both clubs locked in a bidding war for the Ecuador international.
The Daily Mail report that Real's bid of £21.5m is still on the table while United are becoming increasing unhappy with the £16m offer they have made for the 23-year-old.
United's scouts have not been impressed with Valencia's end of season form and the Red Devils are not sure that £16m represents value for money. The Old Trafford outfit are banking on Valencia's unwillingness to uproot and move to Spain to seal a cut price deal.
However, the Daily Mirror claim that United are actually more than happy to pay £17million for the Wigan winger and chief executive David Gill will complete proceedings in the next few days. Any deal might also involve a player exchange but this has been complicated because manager Steve Bruce has left and Roberto Martinez is set to take over as boss. Just for the record, The Mirror claim Real's bid is only £18m.
Madrid are also very interested in taking Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso to the Bernabeu, according to The Times. But the Reds insists it would take a "mind-blowing offer" to persuade them to part company with the Spaniard.
New Real president Florentino Perez said: "Xabi is a magnificent Spanish player, so of course we'd love to have him." Liverpool have made it clear they have no intention of selling the 27-year-old, who has three years left on his contract.
Barcelona will make a last ditch attempt keep £25m Manchester City target Samuel Eto'o at the Camp Nou, according to The Sun. The striker's agent, Josep Maria Mesalles, has confirmed his client would head to the Premier League and Barca president Joan Laporta has admitted offers have come in for the 28-year-old.
Over at Everton manager David Moyes has set his sights a little lower and is weighing up a £7m offer for Reading duo Kevin Doyle and Stephen Hunt. The Daily Star report the Republic of Ireland internationals, who missed out on promotion back to the Premier League this season, are keen to move to Goodison Park.
The Daily Telegraph report that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has agreed a £10 million deal to sign Belgium defender Thomas Vermaelen from Ajax as Kolo Toure looks set to head to Manchester City. The defender said: "Moving to Arsenal is the right path for me."
And finally... England Under-21 boss Stuart Pearce will defy Wenger to ensure Theo Walcott plays in the European Championship, which starts next week, as well as for the senior side against Andorra on Wednesday, claim the Daily Express.
June 7, 2009
The summer of sport is here and there's plenty of other fare on offer. On a day of 20-20 cricket, tennis and rugby - all covered on ESPN of course - England made another step on the road to South Africa.
Of course, that's covered in all English papers with most agreeing that the 4-0 win over Kazakhstan was no classic performance.
But we're in the business of flagrant speculation here so let's get on with it. The Newcastle circus is still in town. But Alan Shearer is leaving it to head to West Brom, who have decided that Tony Mowbray is off to Celtic. So, looking for another man of similar credentials - getting a team in striped shirts relegated - the News of the World say that negotiations will begin this week.
The leaving of Newcastle continues with Michael Owen, unlamented by most of the Toon Army. The News of the World say that Aston Villa are set to offer him a deal - with a £70,000-a-week pay cut. Over at the Sunday Mirror, it is said that AS Roma want Mike's services.
Talking of ageing strikers, how about Ruud Van Nistelrooy? The People say that Spurs want him. At 32, with knee problems aplenty he'll cost Harry Redknapp just a £1.25m, which works out a lot cheaper than £10m for Roque Santa Cruz, a man similary wracked by injuries.
A couple of returns in the offing here: Glen Johnson back to Chelsea for a £16m say The People among others. And Peter Crouch back to Liverpool? That's in the Mirror.
OK, big club corner here. Barcelona want Nemanja Vidic, say the Daily Star. And to further anger Sir Alex, are set to steal Franck Ribery and Karim Benzema, says the Mail on Sunday. Inter Milan want Robin Van Persie, say The Mirror who throw a curveball with news of a £7m move for Sheffield United's Kyle Naughton.
And, wannabe big club Manchester City are set to annoy the established big clubs by signing Athletic Bilbao's starlet Javi Martinez. That's in the People.
June 6, 2009
Real Madrid are set to dominate the summer's transfer news agenda - yet again. Their attempts to buy three of the world's best in Ribery, Ronaldo and Kaka continue.
The latest is that they're set to land the French member of that trio for a cool £60m. The Sun call that bid for the Bayern Munich a "Rib Stake". Another potential twist, say The Sun again, is that AC Milan will try to buy Ronaldo if they lose Kaka to Real.
Add to that a Real Madrid leak that Arsene Wenger turned down a move to the Bernabeu but needed three meetings to come to that decision. That's in the Daily Mirror.
A further AC Milan strand is a war of words between new Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti and Fabio Capello, which runs in just about every paper. That one may have yards to run yet.
Another player linked with the biggest names is David Villa of cash-strapped Valencia. Perhaps not so skint if Chelsea hand over the £40m for the striker that The Independent cite. So too Karim Benzema, whose potential to move was opened up by Lyon chief Jean-Michel Aulas calling the striker "not untransferable". The Express say Man United are in for him.
Liverpool's cash crisis, heavily reported everywhere, has led to some "2+2" activity. David Silva is another joining the Real revolution, say The Telegraph. Not only that but Javier Mascherano is off to Barcelona for £20m, say the Daily Mail.
To keep hold of him and potentially buy some others, Liverpool need to sell. Andrea Dossena is first off, say The Telegraph.
On English soil, there's a tug of war between Aston Villa and Spurs. Villa have been offered David Bentley plus £8m for Ashley Young, according to The Sun, while on the other hand, say The Mail, Villa want Jermaine Jenas.
And on the managerial front, Roberto Mancini and Slaven Bilic are in line for the job at Portsmouth. The Daily Star say that Paul Hart has been told he's not getting the full gig - which seems unfair.
June 5, 2009
This morning is Friday, June 5. There is still essentially another three months to go until the transfer window closes. And, to be honest, if nothing happens with Cristiano Ronaldo in this time there is only one thing for it. I'm going to have to kill myself.
Who cares if there is an agreement in place, if the alleged golden handshake took place or if Florentina Perez, the king of the galacticos, is going to herald in a new era of high spending and underachievement?
Of course, as we know only too well here at Soccernet Towers... we have to write about it. So do the papers. And so does everyone else.
Today's big one is over at the Daily Mirror where it is thought Real Madrid could twice break the transfer record. Firstly for Kaka and then pay £75m for Ronaldo - as United will do business on that fee. Just talking about money, money.
The Daily Star harks back to the little agreement to sign Ronny by the end of this month. There's been plenty of talk about get out clauses and insurance policies on the deal, and this paper claims Ronaldo himself will be paid £26m by Real if the deal does not go through. Not bad for a summer's speculation. The Independent backs that up.
More big money being talked by the Daily Mirror, and could Aston Villa be set to lose another of their key players? Rumour has it that new Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti wants to splash £20m on Ashley Young. The Sun says Ashley Cole will get a new deal worth £130,000-a-week to keep him at the club.
Speaking of Garry Barry, and it seems Gary Cahill - both were at Villa - was none too happy about his defection to Manchester City. The Daily Star says the two had a bit of handbags on the England training field. Barry was clattered for a penalty but there was no forgiveness.
Most of the press on Friday morning is concerned with the impending doom at Anfield, with questions over George Gillett and Tom Hicks' ability to refinance their huge debt on the club before the end of next month. The Times asks if Liverpool can pay the interest on the £350m debt.
And the Times reckons it means David Silva will head to the Bernabeu instead of Liverpool.
Rafael Benitez has spent time since the end of the season insisting he wants to keep hold of Xabi Alonso. Well, he aint going to get Garry Barry now is he? But guess who's been linked with him? Yes, the Daily Mirror suggests that, ahem, Manchester City could sign him.
City, however, are tipped to miss out on Wolfsburg striker Edin Dzeko as the Daily Mirror says he will head to Arsenal as an £8million replacement for Emmanuel Adebayor. The Daily Star carries the City link. And The Sun has Adebyor going to Milan.
The Sun thinks Arsenal wil also sign Yaya Toure from Barcelona to be reunited with his brother Kolo.
There's been plenty of talk about Tom Huddlestone so far with the England Under-21 international seemingly not in Harry Redknapp's plans. So the Daily Mail thinks he will be off to Aston Villa. The Daily Star thinks David Bentley could make the same move.
Another player out of the door at Spurs, so says the Daily Mirror, will be Didier Zokora. But will Sevilla pay the £8m wanted?
And the Daily Mail also thinks Birmingham and Bolton will be fighting for Lucas Biglia of Anderlecht for £6m.
One of the first tasks at Sunderland for Steve Bruce will be to get a big target man in. And he really is going big, accoring to the Daily Mirror, for the world's tallest player, Serbian striker Nikola Zigic.
June 4, 2009
Kaka's proposed world record transfer is still dominating the back pages of the UK newspapers but it seems that none of them can decide on the final destination of the AC Milan playmaker.
The Daily Express insist that Chelsea have conceded defeat in their pursuit of the 27-year-old Brazilian and have tabled an improved £38million offer for his fellow Brazilian Alexandre Pato instead. Blues owner Roman Abramovich will offer the 19-year-old AC Milan forward, known as "The Duck" at the San Siro, a contract worth £5m a year.
The Guardian agree that Chelsea have given up on signing Kaka and claim that the Brazilian will be confirmed as a £56.2m Real Madrid player on Monday, but Bayern Munich's Franck Ribery and Valencia's David Villa are the back-up transfer targets, not Pato.
New Blues boss Carlo Ancelotti expressed his admiration for Ribery in his autobiography, published last week, and has been in regular contact with Chelsea's head of youth development and scouting, Frank Arnesen, in recent days. Villa is likely to be made available by Valencia, who are heavily in debt and failed to qualify for the Champions League.
However, The Sun report that Ancelotti made a dramatic phone call to Kaka on Wednesday to plead with him to shun Madrid and join Chelsea. The Italian was Kaka's boss at Milan for six years and forged a close relationship with his star player.
A pal of Ancelotti's told SunSport: "Carlo called Kaka in Brazil."
The Daily Mirror agree with their fellow tabloid and insist that a list of eye-watering demands from Kaka's representatives is threatening his move to Madrid - keeping Chelsea's hopes alive. Apparently the Brazilian's father and agent Bosco Leite wants a £10m commission for himself, a £10m signing-on fee for the player, plus a transfer and £1m signing-on fee for Kaka's brother Digao.
If the Kaka deal does go through Milan are hoping to use some of the cash to land Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic in a £25m deal, according to the Daily Mail. The Rossoneri will face competition from Barcelona, who also rate the Serb, and hope his wife's struggle to settle in Manchester will facilitate the deal.
United might also lose on-loan forward Carlos Tevez after the Old Trafford club made a final take-it-or-leave-it offer to the 25-year-old's owners, MSI, report the Daily Star.
But the Argentina striker is not short of suitors and The Times claim that local rivals Manchester City are already plotting a £50million double swoop for Tevez and Barcelona forward Samuel Eto'o. The prospect of playing the two strikers in tandem in a team already featuring Robinho would give City one of the most exciting forward lines in the Premier League.
June 3, 2009
Kaka became the centre of the media universe on Wednesday, with all other news stories orbiting around the AC Milan playmaker's proposed world record transfer to Real Madrid.
But while The Sun claim that the £62million deal is all but complete, following a meeting between Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani and Real's newly appointed president Florentino Perez, other news outlets are not so sure.
The Times report that Chelsea have launched a last-ditch bid to hijack the Brazilian's move to the Bernabeu (worth only a mere £56.2m, according to the broadsheet) and have offered Kaka "extraordinary" personal terms after they were advised that there was a hitch in the Madrid deal.
The Blues would have to better the £150,000 a week five-year contract on offer in Spain.
If Chelsea do miss out on Kaka they will turn their attention to Brazil team-mate Alexandre Pato, according to the Daily Telegraph. It seems new Blues boss Carlo Ancelotti is desperate to land at least one player from his old club and has already launched a £30m bid to sign the AC Milan starlet.
On any other day Gareth Barry's surprise £12m transfer from Aston Villa to Manchester City might have been the lead story but the Citizens are doing their best to wrestle back the limelight with a £32m bid for Carlos Tevez.
Barry's arrival is just the start of manager Mark Hughes' summer spending spree, according to the Daily Express, and as well as landing Tevez from Manchester rivals United he is also negotiating a £15m deal for Chelsea striker Didier Drogba.
But the ever increasing list of transfer targets doesn't stop there. The Daily Mirror report that City are also chasing Barcelona forward Samuel Eto'o, Everton defender Joleon Lescott and Arsenal centre-back Kolo Toure.
And if you thought today's newspapers couldn't rustle up any more big money transfer tittle-tattle to dazzle your eyes then you would be sorely mistaken.
The Daily Star claim that Barcelona are preparing a £50m bid for Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas. The newly crowned European champions will face competition from Chelsea and Real Madrid, of course.
Meanwhile, in more mundane matters, failed Portsmouth manager Tony Adams told The Independent that he was set to become the new coach of Celtic with the club's former manager Wim Jansen taking on the role of technical director. The Scottish club quickly dismissed the claims as "complete garbage".
June 2, 2009
Like all good films, the Carlo Ancelotti saga has a sequel. Now he's actually been announced as the leading man at Chelsea, he can start to spend some of his cash. Although the Daily Star reckon Roman might have a bit more input in proceedings at the Bridge this time.
Yesterday's papers were filled with possible speculation about who the Italian might bring to the club and, now that we actually know he'll be there, has anything changed?
June 1, 2009
With the news on Sunday that AC Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti has quit the San Siro, the papers have gone crazy with speculation over how much the Italian will be given to spend at Chelsea when he is finally announced as boss.
Starting off with the Sun, who think Roman Abramovich will give Carlo a modest £50m with which to plunder the likes of Franck Ribery and Valencia’s Spain striker David Villa. They also claim Ancelotti has also authorised the sale of Florent Malouda, Salomon Kalou and Deco - which is pretty quick work!