Colm Hayes is here with your weekly roundup of all the biggest transfers from across the Premier League and Europe.
Arsenal have been heavily linked with creative Colombian Juan Quintero in the past 24 hours, a player who is drawing many a comparison with countryman and Real Madrid’s newest galactico James Rodriguez. The Mail are claiming Arsenal are closing in on a £16m deal for the wonderkid, whereas the Daily Express report a fee of double this. The paper expect Porto to hold out for Quintero’s £32m release clause, and one would expect the figure to be closer to £32m than £16m for one of the Portugese club’s most prized assets.
On the way out of the Emirates, for the season at least, is Carl Jenkinson who has joined London rivals West Ham on loan. And just today at a press conference, Arsene Wenger said “it is a possibility that he goes” in relation to club captain Thomas Vermaelen. The Belgian defender has been on the radar of both Manchester United and Barcelona this summer.
Manchester United’s hunt for defensive reinforcements is now apparently hinging on Liverpool’s transfer dealings. Worrying times for the Old Trafford faithful, then. The Daily Mirror are reporting that the Red Devils are closing in on World Cup winner Mats Hummels, but Dortmund will only sell the coveted centre-back if Liverpool will loan them Tiago Ilori as a replacement.
The Arturo Vidal to United transfer saga rolls on as the Star say the Chilean’s agent is trying to put the finishing touches to a whopping £47m deal. The paper also claim that United flop Marouane Fellaini has agreed to join Napoli but the club are holding out for an £18m fee.
Apparently making a loss of more than £10m on the Belgian bruiser would add too much insult to the injury of the Moyes era. Meanwhile, the latest name to be linked away from the red side of Manchester is Shinji Kagawa with the Express reporting he is wanted by Diego Simeone at Atletico Madrid.
Liverpool are searching for defensive reinforcements of their own, with Sevilla left-back Alberto Moreno back on the radar since Ben Davies joined Tottenham. They are also chasing Atletico Madrid full-back Javier Manquilla, and the Telegraph say Anfield’s chief executive Ian Ayre has flown to Spain to complete both deals.
The Merseyside club are still hot on the trail of Marco Reus, who according to the Metro has turned down a new deal at Dortmund. Reus is one of Europe’s hottest talents and is attracting interest from many of the continent’s top clubs including Barcelona and Man United.
After their deal for Loic Remy fell through, Liverpool are now set to try and raid Southampton once more. Talksport say inquiries have been made for forward Jay Rodriguez, though you expect the Saints are already sick to the back teeth of receiving correspondence from the Anfield club.
The south coast club are very much in danger of being re-nicknamed from ‘Saints’ to ‘Sellers’ at this point. With the wantaway Morgan Schneiderlin posturing for a move to Spurs, two more first-team players have been linked away from St. Mary’s. Not content enough with trying to raid his former club for two players in Schneiderlin and Rodriguez, Mauricio Pochettino now wants Jose Fonte at White Hart Lane.
Goal report that the two clubs have been in talks over the 30-year-old who is very likely to leave with only one year remaining on his contract. However, Spurs are set to sign centre-half Eric Dier from Sporting Lisbon, so the move for Fonte may hinge on Michael Dawson departing the North London club.
Elsewhere, the Daily Express allege that West Brom are attempting to bring Jack Cork to the Hawthorns as a replacement for Claudio Yacob who has been drawing admiring glances from the continent. Another two of last season’s starting eleven leaving might just be too much to handle for Southampton supporters. Won’t anybody think of the fans?!
One of the bigger transfers of the week came in the form of boisterous Belgian Romelu Lukaku making a permanent switch to Everton for the princely sum of £28m. One would imagine Jose Mourinho is pretty satisfied with his transfer dealings so far with Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa being seen as significant upgrades on David Luiz and Lukaku.
Surprisingly, Costa is only four years Lukaku’s senior which one wouldn’t think from his well-weathered visage. Since the Samuel Eto’o debacle last season, Mourinho is insisting all new acquisitions report to Stamford Bridge with birth certificates at the ready.
In other Premier League news, Crystal Palace have captured experienced Norwegian Brede Hangeland on a free transfer to add to Tony Pulis’ backline options. The Times report that West Ham are looking to keep the aforementioned ageless Samuel Eto’o in England after losing Andy Carroll to injury, with Peter Crouch and Hugo Almeida also being considered.
And finally, the Premier League have announced that vanishing spray will be used in the top flight this season. Interestingly enough, Hammers target Eto’o claims a faulty can of the spray caused the permanent disappearance of his birth cert. West Ham fans are said to be hoping said can will arrive at the Boleyn Ground and be used to the same effect on Big Sam.
Colm Hayes, Pundit Arena.