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Thread: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

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    Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Gus Poyet: Was on Wolves' radar


    Gus Poyet has revealed Wolves approached Brighton about him but insisted he "never had a decision to make".
    Wolves are on the hunt for a new boss following the sacking of Mick McCarthy after five-and-a-half years in charge.
    Steve Bruce and Alan Curbishley have been touted as the frontrunners for the vacancy at the Barclays Premier League strugglers but Poyet also appears to have been on the radar at some stage.
    Wolves have previously denied reports they have made an approach for Poyet who spoke after his side's 0-0 draw at Hull.
    "There was an approach but it came and went. I didn't have any decisions to make, anything to think about. I was not involved at all. It was not difficult for me, I was not involved at any time."

    The Uruguayan signed a five-year deal with the npower Championship Seagulls in September 2011 and despite admitting he is keen to manage in the top flight, he feels he could fulfil his ambitions with at the Amex Stadium.
    "I've said a few times that we all aim for the same - players want to play at the highest level, I want to manage in the Premier League," the former Chelsea midfielder added.
    "At the moment the easiest way will be in the next two or three years or whatever it takes with Brighton.
    "If we don't then I need to move on because I want to manage at the top. I'm not going to lie to people. I don't want to wait 20 years but it doesn't need to happen now.
    "If something happens or comes along I will think about it, talk to the chairman - he's the main one - and we'll see. These are all the things you cannot control so I'm relaxed about it."

    Having led Brighton to the League One title last season, earning the manager of the year award along the way, the 44-year-old is content to continue shaping the south coast club's future.
    "I'm very lucky where I am," he added. "I can get the players for the style I play, I can get involved in the new academy and part of the building of the new training ground.
    "It's a great place to be. I'm saying I'm not in a hurry, I signed a long-term contract because I want to be here."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Cuellar: In talks over a new deal


    Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish has confirmed the club have opened talks with Spanish defender Carlos Cuellar over a new contract.
    Cuellar's current deal runs out this summer but McLeish wants the former Rangers player to extend his stay.
    The 30-year-old has been used effectively at right-back and left-back recently in addition to his preferred centre-back role.
    McLeish confirmed: "I think there have been talks (about a new contract) and they will be ongoing.
    "I've said to Carlos it's important he keeps playing as well as he can and then contracts won't be a problem for him.
    "If he produces the form he is capable of, we will get more clean sheets so why would you want to let someone like that go."
    McLeish has again hinted he would not rule out a return to Villa for striker Robbie Keane whose loan spell from Los Angeles Galaxy ends after this weekend's game at Wigan.

    Keane has scored three goals in five starts and impressed in a deeper role behind Darren Bent.
    McLeish said: "Will Robbie return? I don't know. We have to see where we are in terms of recruitment in the summer but Robbie has had a good influence on the place.
    "Where he is right now probably has a glamorous feeling about it but at the same time he's got a bit of adulation from Villa fans so maybe that has probably whetted his appetite."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Carlos Tevez: Apologised to Mancini


    Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini believes Carlos Tevez can play a key role in the closing stages of the season.
    Mancini has said he will accept Tevez's apology for his recent conduct and bring him back to train with the first team after meeting him on Thursday.
    Tevez has not played since falling into dispute with the club last September but Mancini believes the striker could be match-fit again in two or three weeks.
    The 28-year-old was not registered for the Europa League because of his recent unauthorised absence but he could provide a useful option in the Barclays Premier League leaders' final title push.

    Mancini said: "Carlos can't play in the Europa League but we will have four strikers for the Premier League and I think that will be good.
    "If we go through in the Europa League it will be important to have four strikers."
    Mancini was speaking after an impressive goalscoring performance from Tevez's fellow Argentinian Sergio Aguero in Wednesday night's Europa League win over Porto at the Etihad Stadium.
    Another striker, Edin Dzeko, was also on target in the 4-0 success while Mario Balotelli was kept on the bench as City eased into the last 16 6-1 on aggregate.
    Mancini said: "Sergio is another top striker but he is still young and needs to improve. He has scored a lot of goals.
    "He has been important during the season but it is important now, and during the last two months, to have all the strikers available.
    "I am happy also for Edin, scoring another goal.

    "If we have Carlos, Mario, Edin and Sergio on the top I think it will be good for the team."
    Tevez returned to Manchester last week after spending more than three months in Argentina without the club's permission.
    He has not yet met Mancini but the Italian is prepared to bury past following the player's apology.
    Despite all the problems of the past five months, Mancini is confident Tevez - the club's top scorer for the past two seasons and former captain - will fit straight back in.
    Mancini said: "I think Carlos knows the team very well. The team in the last six or seven months have played very well and is top of the Premier League.

    "We know Carlos very well, he is a top striker.
    "If he is good, I think he can do a good job in the next two months."
    Mancini had long maintained Tevez must apologise to be considered for selection again.
    The City boss said: "He has apologised, I do not have any problem."
    He also told ESPN: "I think he needs two to three weeks to train, then some games."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Tevez: Set to meet Mancini


    Joleon Lescott is adamant it will be a help rather than a hindrance when Carlos Tevez eventually returns for Manchester City.
    Following his apology on Tuesday, Tevez is expected to meet manager Roberto Mancini for talks about his future later on Thursday.
    The South American feels he could be ready to play within a fortnight.
    Mancini believes three weeks would be a more realistic target for a player who has not been involved in a competitive game since the Champions League encounter with Bayern Munich in September that led to the split in the first place.
    Either way, Tevez is set to be involved for the Blues at some point next month as they continue their Barclays Premier League title push and look to advance through a last-16 Europa League meeting with either Sporting Lisbon or Legia Warsaw.
    And, for all the disruption he has caused, Lescott does not believe having Tevez around will be a problem.
    "No-one here sees Carlos as a disruption," said Lescott, following Wednesday night's impressive 4-0 win over Porto.
    "If we can all get together and push in the same direction I am sure it's a positive for the club.

    "With us, Carlos has never been an issue, and we are confident that if he does get his chance, he will score a lot of goals."
    Tevez made himself a hero among the City faithful with a return of 52 goals in 91 games following his controversial move from Manchester United.
    That legacy has been badly affected by recent events though.
    Throughout the striker's stand-off with Mancini, Blues supporters have taken the manager's side and many would not be bothered if the Argentina star never pulled on that famous blue shirt again.
    It appears he will be given a second chance though. And Lescott has urged City fans to get behind the striker.
    "It would be a bit harsh," he said.
    "You need to appreciate what Carlos has done for the club over the last two years.
    "Obviously Carlos hasn't been here for the last few months but that's an issue the club have dealt with.
    "We feel that everyone involved has dealt with it correctly and the players have got on with the job in hand.

    "We are still performing in the Premier League and I don't see how it will affect us in the final run-in."
    As one of the few members of the City squad to have direct experience of a successful Premier League title campaign, a legacy of his time at Old Trafford, Tevez's know-how could be vital in the final few weeks.
    Even prior to this point, with City already breaking through the 60-point barrier, Lescott admits there have been occasions when the former West Ham man's famed tenacity and eye for a goal would have come in very handy,
    "There have been moments when we could have done with him - he is a quality player, so even when we were winning no-one wrote him off and thought 'We don't need him any more,"' he said.

    "More often than not we have won games this season, so it is no judgment on the manager's team selection.
    "Now he is back and involved I am sure there will be a lot more fear in opposition teams.
    "We haven't seen him much - we were off for the weekend as we didn't have a game and then preparing for the Porto game - and he has been doing fitness work to get him up to speed.
    "But when I spoke to him at the weekend he did say he was raring to go and looking forward to getting involved."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Mario Beretta: New Cesena coach


    Serie A strugglers Cesena have confirmed the appointment of Mario Beretta as their new coach in the hope he can pull them out of relegation trouble.
    Beretta, 52, joins the Romagna club with them bottom of the Serie A table, seven points from safety.
    He succeeds Daniele Arrigoni at the helm after his departure yesterday by mutual consent.
    Arrigoni himself only took over in November following the sacking of Marco Giampaolo.

    Beretta certainly has plenty of experience after a well-travelled coaching career which includes the likes of Chievo, Parma, Siena, Lecce and Torino.
    His last post was at Brescia but he was sacked after less than two months in the post.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Pearce: Takes charge against Holland


    Stuart Pearce admits he is ready to lead England to Euro 2012 if the Football Association decides he is the right man for the job.
    The England Under-21 boss has been handed the senior role temporarily following the resignation of Fabio Capello earlier this month.
    And Pearce, who also worked under Capello with the senior side as part of the Italian's backroom staff, insists the FA have been left in no doubt about his interest in doing the job in Poland and Ukraine this summer.

    "I'm available, and I have tournament experience, if they need me to step into the breach in the summer," he said ahead of next week's friendly with Holland.
    "That is obviously a decision for the employees here. They know exactly where I am.
    "I've not fluffed around it, I've not turned around and said, 'I'm not sure what I want to do.' They know exactly what I want to do. If they need me to take the squad in the summer I'll do that with pleasure.

    "If they need me to coach a manager that's coming through the door, I'll do that with pleasure as well. Beyond that, at this moment in time, I consider myself, after the summer, as the Team GB manager and Under-21 manager."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Villas-Boas: Says he's backed by Abramovich


    Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas insists he retains the full backing of Blues owner Roman Abramovich despite the club's recent poor form.
    The Blues are fifth in the Barclays Premier League and look to be heading out of the Champions League following their 3-1 defeat to Napoli on Tuesday.
    The 34-year-old's future has been the source of speculation over the last few weeks and reports have claimed there are rifts within the Stamford Bridge dressing room. But when asked whether he still has the backing of Abramovich, Villas-Boas told a press conference on Thursday afternoon: "Yes. Of course."
    Villas-Boas controversially left out Frank Lampard, Michael Essien and Ashley Cole for the first leg of the last-16 tie in Italy, which Chelsea led before a defensive horror show saw them concede three goals.
    The Portuguese still stands by his team selection, although he did admit that he had to explain why he chose the starting XI he did to the club's hierarchy.

    He said: "No, I do not have any regrets about team selection... It was completely right.
    "I have spoken to the persons near to him (Abramovich). He is disappointed and asking questions about how we set up the team, which were duly explained."
    Villas-Boas denied reports that Cole had questioned his tactics. "This is not true," said the Chelsea boss, who has won just four of his last 14 games.
    Villas-Boas continued by denying that Cole had been left out of the XI that played in Italy because he had fallen out with his manager.
    "He had two training sessions before that game. That made an impact on the selection process," Villas-Boas said.
    The former Porto manager, a surprise recruitment to succeed double Champions League winner Carlo Ancelotti last summer, insists he is not feeling the strain despite the club's failings on the pitch.

    "It doesn't affect me at all," Villas-Boas said.
    "Last year I was linked with lots of different clubs whenever results didn't go [right for them], it is the same with this club."
    Former Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez, who has been out of a job since December 2010, has been linked with taking over from Villas-Boas, but the Spaniard's agent denied any approach had been made.
    Manuel Garcia Quilon said: "There is nothing official.
    "It's only media speculation and we have not been approached by Chelsea. We would only evaluate that possibility once there is an offer."
    Lampard was a regular under Villas-Boas' predecessors but he has become an increasingly marginal figure under the young Portuguese boss.
    He was unhappy at being omitted from the Chelsea team in Naples but Villas-Boas claims the incident has been blown out of proportion.
    "In the end it is the decision of the manager and Frank accepts it," Villas-Boas said.
    "It's difficult for him to take with the involvement he's had in the Champions League and I wouldn't expect it any other way, but it is the manager's decision and although it's difficult to take it's for the benefit of the team.
    "We had a discussion. There is nothing to resolve."

    Lampard's contract expires at the end of next season and he has been linked with a number of clubs, but Villas-Boas is keen for the former West Ham man to stay.
    "I hope he is here next season," the Chelsea manager added.
    As vice-captain, Lampard is in line to captain the Blues for the next few weeks as John Terry recovers from a long-standing knee injury.
    Villas-Boas' team have struggled without Terry at the back and the Chelsea boss admits losing the former England skipper is a massive blow.
    "We badly miss him. It is a massive, massive loss," Villas-Boas said.
    "He is a leader and a great performer even through adversity.
    "He has had his knee operation and he will be out for between five and six weeks, hopefully sooner."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Rafael Benitez: Linked with Chelsea


    Rafael Benitez's agent has reiterated the Spaniard's desire to return to work in England but stressed there had been no contact from Chelsea.
    Reports on Thursday morning suggested the west London club had approached Benitez with a view to him replacing the under-fire Andre Villas-Boas at Stamford Bridge.

    But Manuel Garcia Quilon says Chelsea had not been in touch.
    "There is nothing official," he said.
    "It's only media speculation and we have not been approached by Chelsea.
    "We would only evaluate that possibility once there is an offer."
    Chelsea have won just two of their last 10 Barclays Premier League games and slumped to a 3-1 defeat at Napoli in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on Tuesday night.

    And with reports of dressing room revolt, it has been suggested Blues owner Roman Abramovich is considering a coaching change.
    Benitez is available having been out of work since his sacking by Inter Milan in December 2010 and has a track record of success having led Liverpool to Champions League and FA Cup glory and Valencia to two La Liga titles.
    The Spaniard was strongly linked with a move to Paris St Germain earlier this year but Quilon insists the 51-year-old wants to work again in England.
    "Benitez's priority is to coach in the Premier League," he said.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Ezequiel Lavezzi: Attracted to the Premier League


    Ezequiel Lavezzi has admitted that the idea of playing in the Premier League at some point in his career does sound appealing, although he is currently happy at Napoli.
    The Argentina international enhanced his reputation with a fine performance in Tuesday's 3-1 UEFA Champions League victory over Chelsea, and with Napoli performing so well he is not considering a move at any stage in the near future.
    However, he does keep track of other competitions outside of Italy and concedes that it would be exciting to one day play in either Spain or England.
    "I like the Liga where there are a lot of strong players, and I particularly admire Messi," the 26-year-old told Eurosport.
    "But the Premier League is beautiful too. These are two interesting championships, where every player wants to play sooner or later.
    "It's the beauty of our job that we can discover different cultures and countries.
    "For example, I don't speak English, but one day I'd like to learn it."

    Lavezzi has become accustomed to transfer speculation but his agent, Alejandro Mazzoni, is not taking much notice of reports that Manchester City sent scouts to watch him in action against Chelsea.
    Mazzoni maintains that his client is enjoying life in Naples, while the club would fight hard to keep him if there was any formal interest.
    He told Radio Crc: "You cannot talk about the future because there are so many conditions to be assessed.
    "The sure thing is that Napoli president (Aurelio) De Laurentiis wants to keep Lavezzi and El Pocho (Lavezzi) loves Napoli.
    "It makes no sense to talk about the market, today we all have to enjoy Napoli's success and stay quiet.
    "Lavezzi is fine in Napoli and has a good relationship with both club and team-mates.
    "I was told that Manchester City's observers were at San Paolo during the Champions League match, but this does not mean anything. I've not even seen them."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 23-02-2012

    Smith: Out of the running


    Wolves are resuming their frustrating search to replace sacked manager Mick McCarthy after Walter Smith became the latest high-profile candidate to reject the job.
    Caretaker boss Terry Connor will be in charge for Saturday's game at Newcastle after Smith turned down the opportunity to take charge for the final 13 games of the season.
    It leaves former Sunderland, Birmingham and Wigan boss Steve Bruce as the bookmakers' favourite although he is not interested in taking the job just for the remainder of the campaign.
    It is believed Wolves have also sounded out their former manager Dave Jones as a possible short-term appointment.
    Smith had already passed up the opportunity to take over from McCarthy on a long time basis earlier in the week.
    His rejection follows on from Alan Curbishley turning down a second approach while they failed in moves for Reading's Brian McDermott and Brighton's Gus Poyet
    Smith said: "I'm not going (to Wolves). I was totally unsure whether I really wanted to do it or not. It was a purely personal thing, nothing to do with Wolves.
    "There was never a face-to-face meeting and we never discussed finance. If someone asks you, you're pleased to be asked.
    "But the longer you think about it, you start to ask yourself whether it was right."
    Former Leeds, Portsmouth and Brighton striker Connor, who has been at Wolves for 13 years, admitted he would eventually like to move into management.

    But he insists all his current focus is on preparing the side for the trip to the Sports Direct Arena.
    Connor said: "I have worked all my life to try and better myself. I've been a player, youth team, reserve team, assistant manager and been on my courses for management.
    "I've worked towards possibly being a manager someday but right now I'm employed by the club as assistant manager.
    "They want to appoint a new manager and I'm just looking after things until decisions have been made.
    "The club have asked me to look after it until Saturday. Let's just go to Saturday and see what happens."
    Connor has called for club owner Steve Morgan and chief executive Jez Moxey to be given time to make the right appointment.
    He said: "They have to make the right decision. Just because something doesn't happen in one day as the media or fans would like, it doesn't mean they should rush into something they may regret later down the line.

    "They are the custodians of the club and it's up to them to take whatever time it needs to make sure the club moves forward and make the right decision at the right time."
    Connor also declined to comment on whether Jones would be the right appointment.
    He said: "I worked with Dave, had success with Dave, he took us to the Premier League in 2003 but that is something that should be directed to Jez and Steve.
    "The criteria is to stay in the Premier League and they want to give themselves the best chance of staying up."

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