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Thread: Latest Transfer Update at 20-11-11

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    Latest Transfer Update at 20-11-11

    Robin van Persie: Scored for Arsenal

    Arsene Wenger knows just what an "exceptional" talent he has in Arsenal captain Robin van Persie - and wants the Dutchman to stay at the club for the rest of his career.
    The in-form striker took his tally for 2011 to 30 goals with a brace as the Gunners came from behind to win 2-1 at Norwich on Saturday and maintain their march up the Barclays Premier League table.
    First, van Persie - who had netted a hat-trick at Chelsea before the international break - tapped in from close range after good work by Theo Walcott to cancel out Steve Morison's shock opener.
    His second was an exquisite finish after being played into the right side of the Norwich penalty area following what was a fine advantage from referee Phil Dowd after a foul on Aaron Ramsey.
    And Wenger feels there are few better in the modern game than the Gunners number 10.
    "Robin has some competitors there but he is one of the best of course," said the Arsenal manager.
    "He is exceptional and has something that you cannot give to people.
    "For the second goal, he finished with a chip on his right foot - and I have never seen a bigger left-footed player than Robin van Persie.
    "He always makes the right decisions in a fraction of a second when there is little time available, that makes him exceptional."
    Van Persie, 28, has yet to commit his long-term future to the Gunners, with indications the Holland striker is unlikely to start any contract talks under the end of the season.
    Wenger said: "My dream is that van Persie stays until the end of his career at this club.
    "I will do the maximum I can to try to convince him and I hope I will manage to do that."
    Wenger also used Saturday's post-match press conference to put to bed reports emanating from French newspaper L'Equipe he was contemplating leaving his post.
    The 62-year-old Frenchman continues to have the full backing of Arsenal's board and majority shareholder Stan Kroenke as he masterminds a recovery from what had been the most testing starts of his 15-season tenure.
    Wenger said: "It was nothing in my mind especially, just the fact that the journalist asked me if I would ever leave the club. I said the only way I could do it if I feel I am a pain for the club.
    "I can return this question to you - what do you expect of me?
    "We want to play football that makes Arsenal proud and that gives enjoyment to people who come and watch us."
    Arsenal dominated the opening exchanges at Carrow Road, where Norwich defender Russell Martin first cleared Theo Walcott's curling shot off the line and was then on hand to hack away an angled drive from Gervinho.
    The home side grabbed a shock lead completely against the run of play on 16 minutes when German defender Per Mertesacker was outmuscled by Morison as he hesitated on the edge of the Arsenal area, which allowed the Wales forward to crash the Canaries ahead with his third goal in as many games.
    Wenger feels 6ft 4in Mertesacker will be wiser for the experience.
    "I told Per that when you are in England facing goal, maybe in many countries you are safe but not here. That's what he has learned," he said..
    Despite all of Norwich's endeavour, it seemed only a matter of time before Arsenal were in front - as Ramsey fired into the sidenetting and Gervinho then failed to round the keeper when clean through.
    Van Persie, though, showed his team-mates how it should be done with a sublime finish on the hour, chipping over the advancing John Ruddy after being put through by Alex Song to bag an eighth goal in four games.
    Norwich have proved a resilient side on their return to the top flight under Paul Lambert, but could not craft an equaliser, as Anthony Pilkington just failed to connect with a cross at the near post in the home sides best second-half opening.
    Lambert, though, continues to take plenty of positives.
    "Arsenal are a top side, have some world-class players, with one of the best strikers around at the minute," he said.
    "But we stayed in the game and got the goal, which gives everyone belief."
    "That [Pilkington] chance was the one we probably have to score.
    "With the level we are at, you have to be clinical in both boxes, if you are not, then it can come back and hurt you."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-11-11

    Pardew: Warning to any interested clubs

    Alan Pardew insists any club wanting Newcastle's top players will have to break the bank.
    Newcastle's excellent start to the season has seen some of Pardew's big names linked with moves away.
    Captain Fabricio Coloccini has been linked with Liverpool, whilst Chelsea have been credited with an interest in midfield enforcer Cheick Tiote.
    And while Pardew admits that players could leave in January, he insists it would take huge money to persuade them to do a deal.
    "It is going to cost a hell of a lot of money, a hell of a lot of money because we're in that position now," he told the Sunday Mirror.
    "I think any of our players that get linked to other clubs, those clubs are going to need to know they'll need to pay a shed load of money to get anyone out of this football club.
    "I don't envisage anyone going out in this window, but if a club, one of the top clubs, comes in and wants to pay way, way over the odds we'll have to look at it."
    Pardew is looking at bringing in new names, including a deal for Sochaux's Modibo Maiga, although he admits the fact he will be playing in the African Cup of Nations early next year has not passed them by.
    As well as Maiga, current Toon stars Demba Ba and Tiote are also set to be involved in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.
    "We have looked at the African Nations Cup and we have looked at the next window," he said.
    "I think the maximum we would do is two players in. That would be our maximum. Then if anyone left, it would be a third."
    Meanwhile Pardew is full of confidence ahead of next weekend's trip to Old Trafford despite Newcastle losing their unbeaten record at Manchester City.
    An eventual 3-1 defeat to the Premier League leaders did scant justice to the Magpies' efforts.
    "I have no fear going to Manchester United after seeing that," said Pardew.
    "We are still in a great position and we will have some key players back in Tiote and Obertan. That will help."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-11-11

    Moyes: Everton boss

    Everton chairman Bill Kenwright has promised manager David Moyes he will have money to spend in the January transfer window.
    The Toffees' board have come in for criticism over recent months for their inability to provide the necessary investment in the squad.
    This summer they sold Mikel Arteta, Jermaine Beckford and Ayegbeni Yakubu for a combined sum of about 15million but were only able to bring in loan signings Royston Drenthe and Denis Stracqualursi and back-up goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann on loan.
    Making a net profit on transfers has been a regular occurrence at Goodison Park but much of the money has been used in areas other than the squad, including paying down the club's overdraft.
    But Kenwright insists there will be cash to spend when the window reopens in just over a month's time.
    "We are talking (with Moyes)," he said.
    "There will be not a lot of money in terms of what other clubs are spending on centre-forwards but there will be money.
    "There will be investment in January."
    Prior to Saturday's 2-1 victory at home to Wolves there was another march by supporters' group Blue Union to protest about stagnation at the club in relation to finding a new buyer and outside investment which, according to Merseyside Police, numbered between 250 and 350 people.
    While Kenwright empathised with those taking a stand in the best interests of the club he re-iterated his rejection of claims by the Blue Union that he did not want to let go his control of the club.
    "The day I got the news from the bank in 1999 at 9.27am that my bid had been successful to take over the club I was on the fourth floor of my office and I ran banging on doors saying 'We've got it'," he added.
    "Everton were in a very difficult time and it was a moment I'll never forget.
    "But the day I finally get the billionaire or whoever, the right buyer, if I am at the top floor of my office I will run down those four floors again and say I've found the right man for at least the next 10 years.
    "It will be an amazingly happy fulfilling moment for me because it has been tough, it is tough and it will remain tough but this football club is far more important than me.
    "My going-away present from the directors' box will be that I have found the investor that this club needs."
    In a week of positives on and off the field for the club Kenwright admitted he was disappointed by the actions of protestors.
    The Toffees won Community Scheme of the Year at the north-west football awards, became the first Premier League club to be given permission to open a Free School, saw Jack Rodwell make his senior international debut and fellow midfielder Marouane Fellaini sign a new five-year contract.
    "The disappointment about the events outside Goodison was heightened because it has been an extraordinary week for Everton," said Kenwright.
    "Everton is much more than a football club it is a huge family - people will laugh and mock me for that.
    "For those things to happen, for a chairman that has to be important and fulfilling."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-11-11

    Stevenson: Praises Brown

    Hibernian midfielder Lewis Stevenson praised Billy Brown's approach and has backed the caretaker boss to be appointed manager at Easter Road on a permanent basis.
    Hibs drew 1-1 with Kilmarnock in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League on Saturday, responding after a disappointing first half which saw them trailing to Manuel Pascali's 36th-minute tap in and booed by their own fans at the interval.
    But Leigh Griffiths netted five minutes after coming on as a half-time substitute, benefiting from Anssi Jaakkola's failure to deal with an Ivan Sproule cross, as Hibs earned a point to remain ninth in the table.
    Brown opted not to launch into his players during the break, instead trying to boost their fragile confidence and Stevenson was among the players to feel the benefit.
    Stevenson said: "We were all frustrated at half-time.
    "He (Brown) was quite calm. He had a few things to say to some people and had a bit of a go at me and it spurred me on.
    "It's only a draw, but being one down we can't complain too much."
    Brown has already been interviewed about becoming the permanent successor to Colin Calderwood, who was sacked on November 6 following 12 wins in 49 matches and 12 months in charge.
    The former Hearts assistant boss had not spoken to any members of the Hibs board in the immediate aftermath of the match and has been no indication of the time scale involved before an appointment is made, with next Saturday's clash at St Johnstone the next fixture.
    Bohemians' Pat Fenlon and Michael O'Neill of Shamrock Rovers have also been linked with the role as Hibs seek a fifth manager in four years.
    Stevenson, though, would be happy for Brown to continue.
    "We all know him and everyone's comfortable," he added.
    Hibs have one home win since February - the September defeat of St Johnstone - and the last 18 months have made for frustrating viewing.
    Stevenson understands those who jeered the side.
    He added: "Everyone was expecting the boos at half-time.
    "You feel for the folk that have been paying to watch - we've not been giving them much to shout about and it must be hard for them to support us.
    "We're paid professional players. It's our fault we're getting booed so we can't complain."
    Brown hopes he can restore the belief among the players, even amid an acidic atmosphere.
    Brown said: "I don't blame people for booing. This is a big club with big expectations and to play as poorly as we did in the first half human nature says you're going to boo.
    "It doesn't help, because there are a lot of young boys there.
    "It's been happening for a while and we've just got to get them picked up."
    Brown was pleased with the second half display.
    He said: "They fought hard. In general we looked more comfortable.
    "I was chuffed for the players in the second half when you fight has hard as that and you get a reward. All credit to them."
    Kilmarnock manager Kenny Shiels stopped short of a full criticism of referee Stephen Finnie after the match and felt his side were the superior team.
    Shiels, whose side host Rangers next Sunday, said: "I think the referee knows how he did in the game and who am I to criticise the ref?
    "If I was allowed to that might be different. They've got a hard job referees and sometimes they can self-inflict and make it harder for themselves.
    "Perhaps that's what happened. Certainly there was an influence there and our boys are really gutted by it."
    Paul Heffernan went off at half-time with a groin injury and Danny Racchi midway through the second half with a calf problem.
    Shiels added: "It's a recurrence for Heffernan. Hopefully it's not a bad one.
    "We don't play for eight days now so it might give him time to be ready for that game."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-11-11

    Hearts: Set for changes

    Hearts director Sergejus Fedotovas has moved to assure fans that owner Vladimir Romanov will continue to work in the best interests of the club but admitted they will be a "very different team" next season with senior players set to be offloaded.
    Romanov this week revealed he had instigated attempts to sell the club after becoming disillusioned with football but Fedotovas insisted that would not undermine the future of the club.
    Hearts are around 35million in debt and there are question marks over their long-term home with Tynecastle proving unsuitable for redevelopment and plans for a new stadium stalling.
    Fedotovas said the club were not working to a timescale in their search for a new buyer, but hinted the board were committed to "transforming the business into a much more youthful, enterprising, entertaining and financially viable club".
    He added on the club's official website: "Mr Romanov has made his position clear and I can reinforce that, while he is justifiably disillusioned by many aspects of the sport - as are so many of the supporters and owners of teams across Europe - he has not lost his feeling towards Hearts.
    Fedotovas could not give specific guarantees over when senior players would be paid wages due last Wednesday, following a 19-day delay on payment of their October salaries.
    "I think it is important, at this stage, to credit the players for their professionalism in the matter," he said.
    "I do believe they understand that when we say we are doing everything to source funding for their salaries then they accept that we are.
    "We have paid 33 of our players already and looking forward to catching up at some point soon.
    "Despite a sporadic delay at times, we have always paid our players and we fully intend to continue to do so."
    Fedotovas also confirmed players would be offloaded to reduce the club's wage bill.
    "We have several players that have reached the peak of their career at Hearts and are ready for a move," he said.
    "Whether this will be January or the summer - we will need to see what options will be available to us. Our strategy involves bringing through the best young players while selling or releasing some of the senior and fringe players."
    Hearts fell to sixth place in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League yesterday following a 1-0 defeat at Dundee United.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-11-11

    Adebayor: Impressive start at Spurs

    Tottenham assistant-coach Kevin Bond has hinted Spurs will attempt to keep Emmanuel Adebayor if he continues to deliver at White Hart Lane.
    Adebayor has proved a success so far during his season-long loan deal from Manchester City and has declared he has no interest in returning to Eastlands.
    The 27-year-old Togo striker has failed to hit the target in nearly two months, but Bond still views him as a valuable addition to the squad.
    And he insists there has been no evidence at White Hart Lane that he is a difficult player to manage, a reputation he earned at Arsenal and City.
    "We don't pre-judge any player. We didn't know what to expect with him, but he's been no problem to anybody," said Bond.
    "He trains really well and never says a word. We hope that continues at least until the end of the season.
    "If he continues to keep playing like he has done for us...players of that calibre are very difficult to find. He's been a big plus for us."
    While Adebayor has been starting every Premier League match, Jermain Defoe has been forced to view proceedings from the bench.
    Bond insists the England striker has demonstrated a superb attitude to slipping down the pecking order
    "Jermain has been extremely unlucky, but continues to train very professionally," he said.
    "He was in the side at the start of the season and has adapted the way he plays, getting more involved.
    "He's unlucky not to have played more, but Rafael van der Vaart is playing in a similar role and is the most clinical finisher around, justifying his selection.
    "But Jermain has been terrific and I'm sure he'll be there when we need him."
    Spurs have surged up the Premier League table after seven victories and a draw in their last eight games.
    Only goal difference is keeping them out of the Champions League places, and they have games in hand on all their rivals.
    Monday night's home clash with Aston Villa gives them a chance to climb into the top four and the club have been lifted by the news that Harry Redknapp should be back in charge.
    Redknapp underwent a procedure two weeks ago to insert two stents to unblock coronary arteries and has been recovering since, but is on the brink of a return.
    Bond insists it is inevitable Redknapp will feel the tension during games, but insists the 64-year-old needs football to function properly.
    "I expect Harry to be back on Monday night," said Bond.
    "I don't know if you can keep the pressure off him. When he comes back to work the pressure of the game will be there.
    "He won't be able to avoid it in tight matches. By and large he copes with it well.
    "Hopefully he'll come back in better health than he went away.
    "You can have your bad moments in football and think 'do I need this?', but with Harry that wouldn't last very long.
    "There is pressure but he's been doing it for a long time and has learnt to live with that pressure.
    "He loves it and would be lost without it."

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