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Thread: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

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    Arrow Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Wenger: Could swoop for Thierry Henry

    WENGER MULLS THIERRY HENRY MOVE

    Arsene Wenger will spend the rest of the festive season mulling over whether to make an extraordinary bid to bring Thierry Henry back to Arsenal on loan.
    Henry is regarded as one of the greatest players to have ever pulled on an Arsenal shirt, winning two league titles and three FA Cups during a hugely successful eight-year spell at the club.
    The Frenchman, who is the club's record all-time scorer, left Arsenal in 2007 for Barcelona before moving to the United States where he currently plays for the New York Bulls.
    The 34-year-old has been training with the Londoners since the close of the MLS season in November and recently had a statue of him unveiled at the Emirates Stadium to underline his legendary status at the club.
    Henry will not be required back in the United States until March and Wenger will lose Gervinho and Marouane Chamakh for up to a month at the end of January due to the African Nations Cup, leaving him short of strikers.
    For that reason, Wenger is considering the possibility of a potential two-month loan deal for the star.
    "I have to think about that," Wenger said. "Short term is ideal for us, but I haven't made any enquiry yet. Thierry is not here at the moment. It has never come up in conversation.
    "January 1 is the vital date for us. We have seven days to make decisions and I will make a decision in the next seven days on players."
    Robin van Persie equalled Henry's club record of 34 league goals in a calendar year at Aston Villa on Wednesday as the Gunners returned to winning ways with victory over Alex McLeish's side.
    The Dutchman now has two more games to see if he can pass Alan Shearer's Premier League record of 36 goals in a year, which was set in 1995.
    Wolves and QPR are Arsenal's next two opponents, and in his current form few would bet against the 28-year-old reaching his target.
    Wenger, however, played down the significance of the record, arguing that six more points are more important than personal accolades.
    "The individual records are not vital for me, they are just a sign that the team scores," Wenger said.
    "He is an exceptional player, but what is important is that we win our games this Christmas."
    Wenger's team host Wolves on Tuesday after having the fixture put back 24 hours due to a tube strike in the capital.
    The Gunners boss, already shorn of four of his first-team defenders, announced yet more bad news from the treatment room.
    Wenger confirmed that Kieran Gibbs will be out for a month after having to undergo surgery for the second time this season on his troublesome stomach injury.
    The 22-year-old's latest setback is bad timing for Wenger, who is already without full-backs Andre Santos, Bacary Sagna and backup defenders Johan Djourou and Carl Jenkinson.
    Gibbs' injury means Arsenal are likely to delve in to the loan market, but Wenger denied reports he has already lined up a move for Manchester City's out-of-favour full-back Wayne Bridge.
    "I haven't made any inquiry yet for Wayne Bridge or anyone else," Wenger said.
    "It is of course something we will look at but it depends on how long you have to take them.
    "I have to see what is available - if I have a good opportunity then why not? They have a big impact on your wages.
    "If you have to sign a player for three or four years and then you have three or four left-backs, only one can play, so they are not happy.
    "It can only be a short-term solution for us because we have bought Santos, we have Gibbs, we have Vermaelen who can play there (left-back), so we do not need a long-term solution."
    Wenger still thinks youngster Gibbs, who was called up for the England squad earlier this season, can make Fabio Capello's Euro 2012 squad despite the injury.
    "He is incredibly unlucky, but he still can play in the Euros, because they are in June and we are in December," Wenger said.
    "Normally this injury would keep him out for four weeks, so there is still a good opportunity."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Wayne Bridge: Just one appearance this season

    MANCINI DOESN'T SPEAK TO ME - BRIDGE

    Wayne Bridge has hit back at Roberto Mancini after the Manchester City manager questioned his motives for remaining at the Blues.
    The Italian has made it perfectly clear the full-back has no future at the Etihad Stadium and implied earlier this week he was staying put for the money.
    The 31-year-old collects a reported 90,000 weekly salary which other clubs are unwilling to match.
    But Bridge has responded by claiming he has never been offered an explanation for why he has been frozen out by Mancini.
    "When I was at Chelsea I was playing for a team where Ashley Cole was the best in the world and I still got games," Bridge, who has only been called on once this season, for the Carling Cup tie against Birmingham in September, told the Daily Mail.
    "It won't happen at City. There has never been an explanation, but it's obvious they don't want me.
    "Mancini doesn't really speak to me, he doesn't really speak to any of the players. The only time I've known a player isolated like this was Winston Bogarde at Chelsea. Usually you still train with the first team, even when they want you out."
    Former Holland defender Bogarde spent four years at Stamford Bridge, making just nine Premier League appearances in total.
    Bridge added: "I've never caused trouble, I'm not that kind of character.
    "There will be days when I'm frustrated - not depressed, but down. Training helps take my mind off the fact that I don't play.
    "If I kicked up a fuss I might have got out easier."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Giggs: Feeling good

    GIGGS READY FOR FERGUSON TALKS

    Manchester United veteran Ryan Giggs has revealed he will shortly sit down with manager Sir Alex Ferguson to discuss his plans for the future.
    Giggs, who has spent his entire career at United, is presently halfway through the latest in a succession of one-year contracts that have become the norm for the Welshman since he entered his thirties.
    Little could anyone have imagined that, at the age of 38, Giggs would still be producing performances of the high standard he delivered at Fulham on Wednesday night.
    Sir Alex Ferguson described the contribution from Giggs to United's 5-0 win as "incredible", and it also featured the midfielder's first Premier League goal of the season.
    That extended his unique record of scoring in every campaign since the new competition began in 1992.
    Giggs told manutd.com: "It's almost that time when I'll sit down with the manager and see what his plans are [for the future] and I'll see how I'm feeling.
    "At the moment I feel really good and I'm enjoying things more than ever, so we'll just have to wait and see."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Rodgers: Been to watch Lawlor

    LAWLOR DEFENDS DONNELLY U-TURN

    Cliftonville chairman Gerard Lawlor has defended his decision to request an improved offer from Swansea for Rory Donnelly after revealing Everton's bid was "considerably higher".
    The teenage striker is set to leave the Northern Irish club in January, with Swansea, Everton and Liverpool all confirmed admirers.
    The Swans were first to make their move with a bid worth around 100,000, which was accepted by Cliftonville.
    Swansea boss Brendan Rodgers, who has personally scouted the striker and had him shown round the club's training ground, spoke of his frustration after formal interest from Everton apparently upped the asking price, but Lawlor believes he is simply doing his job.
    Lawlor said: "Everton's bid is considerably higher than Swansea's. There is a major difference in the bids. They are miles apart.
    "My job is to do the best thing for Cliftonville."
    Rodgers had earlier said: "I find it sad and disappointing that we had an agreement and now we don't, morally you would think that would stand but we will find out over the next few days."
    Meanwhile, Cliftonville boss Tommy Breslin believes Rodgers could yet get his man, explaining that Swansea's personal touch could yet prove significant.
    Breslin said: "Rory said that he was impressed by Swansea and by what Brendan Rodgers had to say.
    "He said the facilities were good and that there was a great team spirit with no egos. The Northern Irish link with Brendan probably helped too.
    "We expect the deal to be completed. We've got a fixture on Boxing Day and I'm planning for it without Rory."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Gary Cahill: Wanted by Chelsea

    CHELSEA BEGIN GARY CAHILL TALKS

    Bolton have confirmed they have begun talks with Chelsea about the possible sale of Gary Cahill.
    The England defender is out of contract at the end of the season and, with the player seemingly intent on leaving, the Trotters are looking to cash in on one of their most prized players when the transfer window opens next month.
    Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas made his interest in the 26-year-old public earlier this week with Cahill set to offer, at the very least, much-needed depth at centre-half after the Blues accepted a transfer request from Alex earlier this month.
    And Villas-Boas' interest has apparently moved a step forward in the past few days after Bolton revealed today that negotiations had begun.
    "Regarding Gary Cahill, there has been dialogue between ourselves and Chelsea. He is a top player and is fully focused on Bolton," a brief statement on their Twitter page read.
    Manager Owen Coyle had earlier confirmed that talks with another Premier League club had begun in his press conference this morning.
    While the Scot said there was not yet any concrete deal, he admitted Cahill's departure could pave the way for the addition of two or three new names as he looks to drag his side out of the relegation zone.
    "There's nothing signed and sealed at the moment but it's fair to say there has been dialogue here and there," Coyle said.
    "I think it's fair to say there's interest in Gary and there will be and that doesn't surprise me.
    "I know that Andre is an admirer of Gary because he's a terrific player so if there's business to be done it will be done in the right manner for the football club and for Gary.
    "I've got to be upfront and tell you as I always do but that's the situation, and Gary knows as well that there are two huge games before January 1st before anything could happen.
    "I've said from day one, Gary Cahill could play for anybody.
    "I think he has those qualities."
    Despite the interest in Cahill - Tottenham are also reportedly keen on the player - Coyle is confident the former Aston Villa defender will remain committed to his side's cause until any deal is brokered.
    "What January will bring it will bring, but I think it's fair to say there is serious interest in Gary," he added.
    "But - and it's a big but -we have two huge games before January 1, and because of the lad Gary is, his focus will be doing to best for his team-mates who he has stood shoulder to shoulder with for years at Bolton Wanderers and trying to help them and the get points in these two games.
    "Whatever January brings, so be it."
    Cahill joined Bolton in a 5million move from Villa in January 2008 and earned his place in the England squad this season.
    Villas-Boas spoke of his interest in the defender earlier this week as a potential solution to the issue raised when Alex handed in a transfer request.
    Chelsea have also found themselves short-handed at centre-half following injuries to David Luiz and Branislav Ivanovic, who limped out of last night's 1-1 draw against Tottenham with a hamstring complaint.
    "We are aware of Gary's contractual situation. He's an interesting player for the club," Villas-Boas said.
    "We haven't decided what we are going to do with the Alex situation. We have to make the wisest decision, be it Alex, be it Cahill."
    Looking to the rest of his squad, Coyle expects to bring in a few new faces to provide a boost to the club for the remainder of the season.
    He said: "We know as a football club given the injuries and suspensions we've had that we certainly need two or three [new players] to freshen us up and give us a new impetus for the second half of the season, so there's business to be done.
    "Come January 1 we'll see what happens but I think it's fair to say it will be an interesting month."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Diouf: Extends his stay

    DIOUF TO EXTEND DONNY DEAL

    Doncaster boss Dean Saunders has revealed El-Hadji Diouf has agreed an 18-month contract extension with the club.
    Diouf joined Rovers on an initial three-month deal in October and, amid reports of approaches from big-spending Russian outfit Anzhi Makhachkala and LA Galaxy, news of his new deal is a major boost to Saunders in his side's battle against relegation from the npower Championship.
    "He's agreed to sign for 18 months so that's great news for the club," said Saunders at his Friday press conference.
    "He's probably the best signing the club's ever made. He hasn't signed the forms yet but we agreed everything last night and hopefully he's going to sign today."
    "To be fair to him he's had different offers thrown at him and he's decided to stay.
    "He's enjoying his football, he enjoys it at the club, he sees how ambitious we are and sees how ambitious I am - I don't want to managing a team down the bottom, I want to be managing a team at the other end of the table."
    Additionally, Saunders is close to securing the services of other high-profile signings Pascal Chimbonda, Herita Ilunga and Habib Beye until the end of the season, the latter two on extended loan deals from West Ham and Aston Villa respectively.
    "Chimbonda wants to sign and Ilunga wants to stay so I'm going to try and do something on that as well," he said.
    "I spoke to Pascal on Thursday and he wants to sign. He's enjoying his football as well - and Habib Beye, I'm hoping I can do that."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Wayne Bridge: Linked with Arsenal

    WENGER DENIES MOVING FOR BRIDGE

    Arsene Wenger has denied making a move to sign Wayne Bridge, but admits he is likely to delve in to the loan market for a left-back after announcing that Kieran Gibbs will be out for a month following yet more surgery for the England defender.
    Gibbs was expected to be out for two weeks in October with a stomach injury, but tests revealed the full-back had picked up a hernia and required surgery that would keep him out until mid-December.
    The 22-year-old suffered a further setback this week, and he has had to go under the knife again, ruling him out for a month.
    Wenger is already desperately short in defence, with Andre Santos out until March and Carl Jenkinson and Bacary Sagna likely to return in mid-January at the earliest.
    The Gunners boss has had to field Laurent Koscielny, Thomas Vermaelen and Johan Djourou out of position at full-back recently.
    While out-of-favour Manchester City defender Bridge is available on a short-term deal, Wenger has denied he has already lined up a move for the former Chelsea defender.
    "I haven't made any inquiry yet for Wayne Bridge or anyone else," Wenger said.
    "It is of course something we will look at but it depends on how long you have to take them.
    "I have to see what is available - if I have a good opportunity then why not? They have a big impact on your wages.
    "If you have to sign a player for three or four years and then you have three or four left backs, only one can play, so they are not happy.
    "It can only be a short-term solution for us because we have bought Santos, we have Gibbs, we have Vermaelen who can play there, so we do not need a long-term solution."
    Gibbs' promising career has been stunted by a series of injuries that have dogged him since he broke in to the Arsenal first team and his chances of making Fabio Capello's Euro 2012 squad have receded with his latest setback.
    There was better news from the treatment room about Bacary Sagna and Djourou, however, with the latter making a quicker-than-expected recovery from a groin strain he suffered last Sunday at Manchester City.
    "It was a blow for Kieran, but Djourou has a little chance to come back for the Wolves game," Wenger said.
    Sagna, meanwhile, trained separately from the rest of the Arsenal squad in an open training session at the Emirates Stadium today and is recovering well from the broken leg he suffered in October.
    "He's a long way ahead of schedule," Wenger said.
    "I saw him still limping a little bit so we have to be careful but physically he will be ready very quickly because he worked very hard in the gym.
    "The end of January is a reasonable target for him."
    Wenger's injury-hit squad face Wolves on Tuesday before taking on QPR on New Year's Eve.
    The two upcoming games have been given an added importance due to Robin van Persie's goalscoring exploits in 2011.
    The Arsenal captain equalled Thierry Henry's club record of 34 goals in a calendar year last week and is two short of reaching Alan Shearer's Premier League record of 36 goals in a year.
    Van Persie has been the catalyst for the club's turnaround in fortunes this year, but even though Wenger has been impressed with the Dutchman's efforts, he has warned his captain that the team's goals, and not his own should take priority.
    "The individual records are not vital for me, they are just a sign that the team scores," Wenger said.
    "He is an exceptional player, but what is important is that we win our games this Christmas."
    That said, Wenger is obviously keen to see the former Feyenoord man replicate his efforts in 2012 and help the Gunners guarantee a top-four finish.
    "The target for him is to be better in 2012," Wenger added.
    "In sport you have always have that target, to be better than what you have done before."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Simeone: Appointed by Atletico Madrid

    ATLETICO MADRID TURN TO SIMEONE

    Atletico Madrid have moved quickly to replace sacked coach Gregorio Manzano by announcing the appointment of Diego Simeone as his replacement on an 18-month contract.
    The Argentinian, who played for Atletico in two spells between 1994 and 2005, will take up the role on Monday after agreeing a deal for the remainder of this season and the 2012/13 campaign.
    He will be formally presented to the media at the Vicente Calderon stadium on Tuesday and his first match in charge will be a Primera Division meeting with Malaga on January 7.
    "Atletico Madrid have completed the hiring of Diego Simeone as the new coach of the Atletico first team," read a statement on club website clubatleticodemadrid.com.
    "The Argentinian coach has accepted the offer made to him by the club on Thursday [to take charge] for the remainder of the season and another season, and will arrive in the Spanish capital to begin work at the helm next Monday."
    Simeone becomes Atletico's 11th coach in 10 years and will bid to arrest a run of alarming form that has seen the club lose three of their last four matches in the league and crash out of the Copa del Rey.
    The 41-year-old former Argentina international made over 130 league appearances for Atletico in two spells at the club. He was a key member of Atletico's 1996 double-winning side, and also had spells at Sevilla, Inter Milan and Lazio.
    Simeone retired from playing in 2006 and has since embarked on a managerial career largely based in his homeland and taking in stints at Estudiantes, River Plate and San Lorenzo.
    His managerial highlights include guiding Estudiantes to the 2006 Apertura title and taking River Plate to the 2008 Clausura, while earlier this year he helped guide Catania clear of relegation danger from Serie A during a short stint at the Italian club.
    He was most recently at the helm of Argentinian side Racing de Avellaneda, guiding the club to the Copa Sudamericana for the first time in eight years.
    The Atletico board will hope the appointment of Simeone signals an upturn in form after Manzano was removed from the post yesterday following a poor run of results.
    Sunday's 2-0 defeat at home to Real Betis left the 'Rojiblancos' 10th in the standings heading into La Liga's winter break, while they crashed out of the Copa del Rey in midweek at the hands of third-tier Albacete.
    Manzano did guide Atletico to the last 32 of the Europa League as winners of their group but that was not enough to appease the board or the club's disgruntled supporters.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Chinedu Obasi: Joined Schalke on loan

    SCHALKE SWOOP FOR OBASI

    Schalke have signed Hoffenheim forward Chinedu Obasi on loan until the end of the season.
    Obasi was suspended from the Hoffenheim first-team squad recently for disciplinary reasons and his future under coach Holger Stanislawski looked bleak.
    However, he now has the chance to revive his career after joining the Royal Blues until next summer.
    "He is a quick and versatile forward," said Schalke's general manager Horst Heldt on his club's website.
    "In addition, he is eligible to play for us in Europe."
    The 25-year-old will join his new team-mates for their mid-season training camp in Qatar from January 4.
    Should he impress between now and May, Schalke have already secured an option to make the move a permanent one.
    Obasi joined Hoffenheim in 2007 and has scored 13 goals in 65 Bundesliga appearances.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 24-12-11

    Warnock: Doesn't think he has enough leaders

    WARNOCK WANTS LEADING MEN

    QPR manager Neil Warnock has highlighted a need to bring "leaders" to Loftus Road during the January transfer window.
    The club have endured a tumultuous campaign since their return to the Premier League, winning three times on the road but just once at home.
    QPR currently lie two points above the relegation zone, in 16th spot, and Warnock has been vociferous in his need for new players, especially those that can shine during tough times.
    "I don't think we have enough leaders," he said.
    "That is one department I am looking to bring players in.
    "You can get leaders on the pitch and you can see certain players [which make you envious].
    "We do have one or two here, but I probably have to look at using them a little more than I do.
    "In the past it has always been a priority to check a player's character.
    "But when you look at players at home and abroad it is impossible to do all your checks on every aspect of them.
    "You go with your gut feeling really."
    The west Londoners' need for new blood and increased transfer funds have seen them linked to a host of players ahead of the window reopening.
    Warnock does not expect any incoming players before the trip to Newcastle on January 15 and on Friday quashed speculation linking QPR with moves for Bristol City striker Nicky Maynard, Barcelona's Alexander Hleb and Fulham frontman Bobby Zamora.
    When asked about the latter, Warnock said: "Are we not after Fulham striker Andy Johnson as well? I saw that one last week.
    "It is not for me to talk about other people's players.
    "I have got enough on my own plate trying to get players in.
    "We are actively looking at bringing players in and we will bring players in, but it is not easy in January.
    "You probably don't get your number one choice and you go onto your number two choice, et cetera.
    "I don't know what choice I will get but I hope to bring one or even two forwards in and a couple of defenders.
    "I don't know the specific numbers I am looking to sign because you don't know who becomes available.
    "You can have your targets but they might be unrealistic so you have to have players as back-up that can do just as good a job if you can.
    "We do need certain players for definite in certain areas."
    While admitting he wants new players, Warnock was less forthcoming when asked about Adel Taarabt.
    The Morocco international has failed to shine since QPR's promotion and has been involved in a number of off-field incidents.
    Taarabt has also been heavily linked with a move away from west London, with big-spending Paris St Germain mooted as a possible destination.
    "I am just thinking whatever will be, will be with Adel," Warnock said.
    "If we get an offer we can't turn down then I can use that money elsewhere.
    "But if he continues how he has done the last two weeks it would be lovely for me.
    "I like Adel, he has got to conform a little bit if he wants to stay and he has done the past couple of weeks so you never say never."
    Asked what he was referring to, Warnock added: "In all walks of life you should turn up on time, shouldn't you?
    "Whether you are a good player or a bad player, [you turn up on time].
    "I don't have many issues with him.
    "He is never going to be a trainer like Jamie Mackie, but Jamie is never going to be able to do things Adel can do.
    "So that doesn't bother me, but you just have to be professional.
    "Adel has let himself down a little bit this year but he is not on his own."

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