By Chris Wright
Wasn’t Carrick good? Here’s the round up…
Rumour No. 1: Manchester City are planning a £20 million ‘Lescott-style’ raid for Everton midfielder Mikel Arteta.
City are willing to risk re-opening their feud with the Toffees that began with their disruptive pursuit of then-Everton defender Joleon Lescott, who eventually – following a lengthy and bitter wrangle – moved to Eastlands for £22 million.
Rumour No. 2: Tottenham have been put on ‘red alert’ by the fact that Everton midfielder Steven Pienaar‘s agent, Ivan Modia, has issued the Goodison club a three-week ultimatum to make his client an improved contract offer.
Modia told Sky Sports News;
“At the moment it is unlikely that we can find a solution before the World Cup.
He is very loyal to the club and it is up to what Everton want to do. To be honest he is really looking forward and hopes they can agree before the World Cup. If nothing happens before the World Cup with Everton we may have to consider other options.
I am aware of the interest of some big clubs.”
The Best of the Rest: Manchester United are eyeing up a move for Real Madrid midfielder Rafael Van Der Vaart and manager Sir Alex Ferguson is also said to be mulling over a ‘big money’ bid for Daniele De Rossi, currently of Roma.
Arsenal have finally named their price for Cesc Fabregas, by telling Barcelona that they will not accept a penny under £80 million for their Spanish captain.
The Gunners are also tracking 15-year-old Valencia striker Francisco Alcacer and £14-million-rated Bolton centre-back Gary Cahill.
The agent of Fernando Torres, Jose Antonio Peton, has said that his client fully intends of ‘continuing’ with Liverpool next season.
Speaking of Liverpool, Rafa Benitez is considering a £5 million move for Atletico Miniero’s Brazilian striker Diego Tardelli.
Aston Villa are planning a double raid on Tottenham for Jermaine Jenas and Robbie Keane.
Martin O’Neill’s side will also make a £10 million bid for West Ham midfielder Scott Parker, with the Hammers planning to fill the void left by Parker with the purchase of £6-million-rated Spurs midfielder Jamie O’Hara.
Manchester City outcast Stephen Ireland has made a verbal request to leave the club.
Blackburn are planning to sell Vince Grella to Galatasaray to generate cash to fund a move for Real Madrid veteran Guti.
Birmingham are in talks with Valencia over their giant 6’7” striker Nikola Zigic.
West Brom are chasing Atletico Madrid defender Pablo Ibanez.
Cash-strapped Crystal Palace have accepted QPR’s £750,000 bid for their top-scorer Darren Ambrose.
Ipswich seem to think they can prise £3-million-rated striker Michael Chopra from Cardiff.