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Thread: Latest Transfer Update at 07-05-11

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    Latest Transfer Update at 07-05-11

    Bendtner - lack of opportunities.

    Arsene Wenger admits he understands Nicklas Bendtner's frustrations this season but hopes to convince the out-of-favour striker to stay at Arsenal.
    The 23-year-old Denmark international has struggled for regular first-team football and has previously hinted at leaving Emirates Stadium in the summer.
    But Wenger says he is optimistic of keeping Bendtner when they sit down to discuss the striker's future.
    "I will sit down with Nicklas at the end of the season to see how he feels," said Wenger.
    "I completely agree that he did not get enough chances, it was a very difficult season for him.
    "He must be frustrated and I am as well because I feel he was not involved enough.
    "That is part of the competition as well, but we will see where we go from here at the end of the season. I hope he will stay."
    Wenger is likely to review his squad over the summer and could find a place for several of the youngsters who have enjoyed productive spells on loan, including England Under-21 midfielder Henri Lansbury who helped Norwich secure promotion to the Premier League.
    "Some of them will come back and be part of the squad. Lansbury can be one of them, I like him," said Wenger.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 07-05-11

    Downing - two years left on his current deal.

    Aston Villa have opened initial talks with representatives of winger Stewart Downing regarding a new contract.
    Downing still has two years remaining of the current deal he signed when moving from Middlesbrough for a then club-record 12 million during the summer of 2009.
    But Villa caretaker boss Gary McAllister is aware of the need to ensure Downing remains at the club on a long-term basis, particularly with a major doubt hanging over the future of Ashley Young.
    McAllister said: "Stewart has got two years left and we are getting into that area where it's coming into our vision.
    "It's in progress at the moment. We are starting to make contact with his agent.
    "We have to keep good players here."
    McAllister admits he would vote for Downing as Villa's player of the year and believes he is capable of becoming an England regular.
    The former Middlesbrough player impressed during the friendly international against Ghana at Wembley in March.
    McAllister said: "It's been a very mixed season but Stewart has been very consistent - especially for a forward player in a team that hasn't been playing as well as it can.
    "He would be my pick as our player of the year. I think him having been injury-free is massive. I don't think he has missed a day's training.
    "He came here on crutches (signed when had a broken foot). I think he will gain a lot of confidence from this year.
    "Getting another pre-season under his belt, he will benefit from that. There's more to come from him.
    "Another wee target for Stewart is that he has always been in and around that England squad.
    "The question is can he go and become a part of the team? I feel he has enough in his locker to do that."
    McAllister also believes Downing is capable of following the example of previous Villa players in Gareth Barry and James Milner in switching from a wide role into central midfield.
    He said: "We have looked at that. It's something we have spoken about a lot. We gave him a little run over there against Birmingham at St. Andrew's.
    "He has got a fantastic shot that doesn't require much of a back lift so, if we can get him in the central areas and with a sight of goal, you could see us working that in pre-season.
    "He has two great feet. I would categorise Stewart a wee bit differently to Gareth and James.
    "That's no disrespect to them but Stewart has a wee bit more in the attacking third.
    "Sometimes you need to change things and it's good to know you have players who can adapt."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 07-05-11

    Hodgson - 'perfectly happy'.

    West Brom boss Roy Hodgson has no plans to open talks about extending his current contract despite securing Barclays Premier League football for next season.
    Hodgson only signed an 18-month deal when he replaced Roberto Di Matteo in February which will take him up to the age of 65.
    A return of 16 points from his first nine games in charge have enabled Albion to make sure of top flight football but Hodgson has no desire to try and cash in with a new deal at this juncture.
    When asked if he would look to extend his contract, Hodgson said: "I've not thought about that as yet.
    "To be perfectly honest, I shall be 64 in the summer. I'll get a bus pass and my state pension as well soon!
    "I prefer at this stage of my career to take things a little bit easier.
    "I don't want to commit the club to contracts either.
    "I'm perfectly happy with the situation, I hope they are, for me to continue.
    "I'm looking forward to next season.
    "Who knows, during the course of the season I am sure we will review it."
    Hodgson concedes he has no wish to manage outside of the Premier League at this stage of his career.
    He said: "I've got to say, with the career I've had, and it's been one I've really enjoyed, I'm not after working outside of the Premier League or a foreign league which is the equivalent.
    "That would always be a concern when you are working for a club where relegation is a possibility.
    "I don't know if I would want that long-term contract where I would have to face the possibility of working in a league I don't really want to work in at this stage of my career.
    "That would be more the opportunity for a young eager manager to get his teeth into."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 07-05-11

    Spearing - new deal.

    Liverpool midfielder Jay Spearing has signed an extension to his contract with the Anfield club.
    The 22-year-old former FA Youth Cup-winning captain had been a fringe squad member for the last few years and although he got limited opportunities in the Europa League earlier in the campaign his season was transformed by the arrival of Kenny Dalglish.
    When the Scot replaced Roy Hodgson in early January one of the first things he did was involve Spearing more, surprisingly giving the midfielder a start in Merseyside derby in his first home match back as Reds boss.
    A broken bone in the midfielder's foot curtailed his involvement after that but in the absence of injured captain Steven Gerrard, Spearing has settled into a central role alongside Lucas Leiva and produced some impressive displays in recent weeks.
    "I'm pleased to have finally put pen to paper and got everything sorted," said the Wirral-born player, who has been at Liverpool since he was seven.
    "I've been here for a long time and playing for Liverpool is all I have ever wanted to do, so hopefully I can keep going now.
    "It has been a long time coming. I've been in the background and in and around the first team and maybe not had a run in the team, but now I'm getting that run I've been able to show my desire and commitment to the club.
    "I owe a lot to the boss and hopefully I am repaying him with the games I am playing.
    "He put me into the derby straight away and that gave me a lot of confidence.
    "Any player who has the belief of the manager always wants to go on and show what he can do.
    "With the new boss coming in and the way we have been playing and with me getting some game time, it has been a good couple of months and this has topped it off for me."
    Dalglish insisted, however, that all the credit should go to the player.
    "It is great news for us and great for him and everyone concerned," said the Scot.
    "It is just reward for the performances he has put in and he deserves what he has got.
    "He is a great asset to have. I suppose this is an extension of the work which has been put in by Jay not only to get a game but to get a new contract."
    The 60-year-old Scot believes Spearing's development is another indicator of the great strides made both on the pitch with the first team and behind the scenes at the academy.
    "Jay has started the last few games for us, which is progress in itself," he added.
    "He was never in the starting XI unless there were injuries or suspensions but he is in there now and is there on merit.
    "He has reached a higher level than he has before. I don't know if he knows what level is expected of him but we are delighted with what he has done."
    Director of football Damien Comolli believes Spearing has a significant role to play in the club's future and that, as much as his recent performances, was why he was tied down to a new deal.
    "To be fair to him, it's not only what he has done in the last four or five games that triggered the new contract," said the Frenchman.
    "We have been talking for quite a while independently of what he was doing on the field but that was confirmation that it was the right thing to do.
    "We think he will be part of the future of the club which is why we rewarded him with a new contract.
    "He was part of the team which won two Youth Cups and it's great for the club to have people like him around.
    "It shows others that if you do well at the academy then you have a chance of getting new contracts."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 07-05-11

    Reo-Coker - talks expected soon.

    Gary McAllister expects Aston Villa to hold talks with Nigel Reo-Coker regarding a new contract within the next few weeks.
    Reo-Coker's current deal expires in the summer and the midfielder could quit Villa Park on a Bosman free transfer.
    No talks have taken place with the Premier League club since late last year, and the player's agent revealed earlier this week that reports the 26-year-old had rejected a new deal were incorrect.
    Clubs in Spain and Italy are monitoring Reo-Coker's situation, but Villa are keen to sit down with the player and discuss an extension.
    "We spoke the last time in November, December but we're fully aware of the situation and we'll be looking to speak to Nigel over the next two or three weeks," said Villa's assistant manager McAllister.
    "He's a player who's been very committed since we've arrived, when he's been in the team and out of the team.
    "He's actually won his place in the team by the way he's gone about his training in the week and I applaud that."
    Meanwhile McAllister insists Villa do not need "major surgery" to their squad this summer for them to again become challengers for a European spot.
    Villa's caretaker boss acknowledges that this season has been a disappointment after three successive top six finishes in the Premier League.
    But McAllister is confident the midlands club can look forward with optimism once manager Gerard Houllier - currently recuperating from a heart problem - has had time to stamp his mark on the club.
    McAllister, who will again be in charge for Saturday's home clash with Wigan, said: "We should be looking at the European positions and that goes without saying.
    "Everything is here and set up for that. That has got to be the target.
    "You can't necessarily jump from sixth, seventh, eighth right up to those top four places.
    "Everyone has got to hold their hands up and say those top four spots are very hard to obtain these days.
    "There are loads of factors coming into play to get this club to that level.
    "But that next group of teams is where Aston Villa have got to be targeting themselves without a shadow of a doubt.
    "Everything is here, it's equipped to do that, players, stadia, training facilities."
    Even though the futures of Ashley Young and Reo-Coker are not yet secured, McAllister does not believe Villa require a radical overhaul of the current squad.
    He said: "There has got to be time given to Gerard Houllier to get his philosophy into the club.
    "To get that philosophy into the club, you've got to get a certain type of player.
    "We've got good players here and it is not major surgery needed here, just a little tickle here and there.
    "You might think at the moment we are miles away but I don't think that is the case."
    In the short term, McAllister is targeting Villa finishing the campaign as the leading midlands club.
    But he is aware Villa will have to combat a Wigan side fighting for top flight survival.
    He said: "That is a target. Sitting on top of the midlands pile is good for the fans as well.
    "The players are not accustomed to being where we are at the moment so it's been tough for them and they've responded to get us out of that immediate danger.
    "It has been hard for everyone but we will become better for it.
    "We know Wigan are fighting for their lives but they are very committed to a certain style of play.
    "The manager wants them to get the ball down and play and that, in itself, is showing a bit of bravery as far as I am concerned.
    "They try to play through the areas of the pitch, they try to build from the back. We are aware of their strengths.
    "But also we've got to be more concerned about what we do rather than looking at the opposition.
    "We are looking to finish the season on a high."
    Striker Emile Heskey is available after missing the 2-1 defeat at West Brom last weekend with a knee problem.
    But midfielder Jean Makoun has still not fully recovered from a dead leg and will not be considered against the Latics.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 07-05-11

    Aluko - looks set to leave Aberdeen.

    Aberdeen manager Craig Brown has warned Sone Aluko that he will not let him leave the club without the appropriate compensation.
    The 22-year-old winger looks set to depart Aberdeen in the summer following the expiry of his contract after telling Brown he wants to be closer to his family home in Birmingham.
    But Aluko, a full Nigeria international, would command a six-figure compensation fee given his age and Brown will not compromise over the deal.
    "He is not going to without the appropriate compensation, it's as simple as that," said Brown, whose team host St Johnstone in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League on Saturday.
    "Why have a compensation agreement and not benefit from that?
    "I'm not going to be awkward to Sone but if someone is not prepared to pay 200,000 for him, they don't value him highly enough. That would be my message to Sone.
    "But I'm sure someone will. If his agent is on case, I don't think it will be difficult to get that kind of money for a very talented player.
    "His agent has told me that he's actively looking for a club for him in England and I'm quite sure he'll have no problem finding one."
    Brown is more hopeful of keeping goalkeeper Jamie Langfield and has not ruled out persuading striker Chris Maguire to stay.
    And Langfield is keen to agree a new deal despite inadvertently delaying negotiations.
    The 31-year-old said: "My agent spoke to the club last week.
    "Since then we have not really spoken. I think that's my fault because I lost my phone.
    "I have had to go and get a new handset, I think my agent has been trying to get hold of me, I have not spoken to him yet.
    "I know the manager needs to know as quickly as possible. I'm the same, I want to get things sorted.
    "I love staying in Aberdeen and I love playing for Aberdeen but it all depends on what the club are offering.
    "They have said they want to keep me and that's great, especially when you see the boys they are releasing, some close pals of mine."
    Brown's injury list lengthened during the week when Michael Paton and Peter Pawlett picked up injuries during the Aberdeenshire Shield final defeat by Turriff United.
    But he will be boosted by the return the squad of teenage midfielder Fraser Fyvie against St Johnstone following almost nine months out with cruciate ligament damage.
    "Fraser Fyvie will be on the bench, whether we use him or not will depend on the circumstances and maybe the result at the time," Brown said.
    "I don't want to put him in an environment where we're looking for him to rescue the team. But we are so short of players we need to put him in the squad."

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