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Thread: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

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    Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Royston Drenthe: Eyeing Feyenoord move


    Holland international Royston Drenthe wants to return to Feyenoord and end his troubled five-year spell with Real Madrid.
    The 25-year-old midfielder has failed to establish himself at the Spanish champions and has found himself out on loan for the past two seasons.
    Drenthe has spent this term at Everton and, despite impressing in patches, his time on Merseyside has been soured after he was dropped for the FA Cup semi-final with Liverpool due to disciplinary reasons and has not been picked since.

    With his future now up in the air Drenthe has admitted he wants to return to his home-town club Feyenoord, who have qualified for the Champions League, claiming he would even call them to initiate a move.
    "I want to do what I like and that's play football. In addition Rotterdam is my city," he told RTV Rijnmond.
    "Feyenoord have not called me yet, but of course I would not mind if they did. Maybe I'll call them myself."

    Drenthe left Feyenoord for Madrid in 2007, joining alongside fellow Holland international Wesley Sneijder, for a reported fee of 14million euros.
    He spent last season on loan at Spanish side Hercules, who were relegated, before scoring four goals and providing seven assists in 27 appearances for Everton this term.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Lucas Biglia: Says Arsenal and Real Madrid want him


    Anderlecht midfielder Lucas Biglia claims Arsenal and Real Madrid have been in contact with his agent and he expects to be on the move in the summer.
    The Gunners are reported to have held a long-standing interest in Biglia, who is under contract for a further three years with Anderlecht.
    However, the Argentine believes the newly-crowned Belgian champions will allow him to leave at the end of the season and he is now waiting for offers.
    "It's true that Real Madrid and Arsenal are interested in me," the 26-year-old told

    "I can say that Real Madrid have contacted my agent Enzo Montepaono to ask about my situation but so far there have only been contacts and no formal offers have arrived.
    "About Arsenal, I can tell you the same as before. Only Arsenal and Real Madrid have contacted us and now we are waiting.
    "I have a contract with Anderlecht until 2015 but the club know what I want. My intention is to leave.
    "We have negotiated my buy-out clause and, if a club comes and pays the clause, Anderlecht will allow me to leave.
    "In January, there was an important offer from Fiorentina but the club rejected it because we were in the middle of the championship. I hope now things can be different."
    Biglia's buy-out clause is understood to be 10million euros (8m), while reports in France have also claimed that Arsenal are closing in on a deal for another midfielder - Rennes' Yann M'Vila.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Kemy Agustien: Set to sign new contract


    Swansea midfielder Kemy Agustien has revealed he is close to signing a new long-term deal and expects to be at full fitness for the start of next season.
    Agustien's current deal expires in the summer, but he has not played for the Swans since the end of January due to an ankle injury.
    He was subsequently ruled out for the rest of the season in early March when manager Brendan Rodgers assured Agustien that he would not have to worry about a new contract.
    Reports suggest the Dutchman will now agree a deal at the Liberty Stadium until 2014 and the 25-year-old is happy to be staying with Swansea.

    "Unfortunately I missed out the last few weeks due to an ankle injury, but with 13 league games, two cup games and seven starts I could be satisfied," Agustien told De Telegraaf.
    "I have always had belief in my abilities. Luckily, the manager has a lot of trust in me.
    "I had an expiring deal, with an option for Swansea City for another season. The club really wanted to make a completely new deal. This new deal shows a lot of respect. Besides that, it's great to live in Wales."

    Swansea have performed beyond expectations in their first season in the Premier League, comfortably securing survival, and Agustien is not surprised by their achievements as he plots his comeback.
    He added: "I don't think this position is strange. In our first year in the Premier League we had more ball possession nine times out of ten than the opponent.
    "If the league would last one week longer, I could have played. I will have a short break and am looking for an optimal start at the beginning of the season."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Bakaye Traore: Joining AC Milan


    Nancy midfielder Bakaye Traore has revealed he will be an AC Milan player next season.
    The Mali international announced he will join the Rossoneri outfit on a free transfer from Nancy this summer.
    "I am delighted to finally announce that I'm going to sign for Milan," Traore said to RMC Radio.

    "It is an incredible feeling. I am signing for one of the top clubs in the club.
    "I know there will be a lot of competition to play, which is only normal, but the motivation is there to continue to grow."
    The 27-year-old joined Nancy from Amiens in 2009 and has scored five goals in 20 league matches for the Ligue 1 outfit this season.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Steve Kean: Under pressure at Blackburn


    Blackburn's deputy CEO Paul Hunt wanted manager Steve Kean removed last December, a leaked letter he sent to the club's owners has revealed.
    Hunt's letter, obtained by Sporting Intelligence, also details financial turmoil and the supporter unrest which has manifested itself at Ewood Park since the Venky's takeover of November 2010.
    Hunt, writing after a stormy loss to Bolton last December, also warned of the danger of relegation from the Premier League - a fear which came true after defeat by Wigan on Monday night.

    Hunt was highly concerned about the direction of the club under the distant ownership of Indian firm Venky's and asks chairperson Anuradha Desai to allow him greater control.
    Hunt has been the most senior official at Ewood since the departure of former chairman John Williams more than a year ago.
    He began the 2,500-word document by writing: "I have been your senior officer at the club for six months now and I feel that I must now write to you to ask you to make some significant changes to save the club, perhaps from relegation but also perhaps from administration.
    "In 20 years of the Premier League there has been only one side that was bottom of the league at Christmas that has survived relegation at the end of the season.

    "With the bank closing in, I fear that they will look to foreclose and have the potential to implement financial restrictions upon the club that could (as a worst-case scenario) enforce administration.
    "I have kept quiet for a time now out of utmost respect and I trust that you realise that I am only emailing you now as I want what is only the best for Blackburn Rovers and the owners.
    "I am very much of the opinion that we can save the club and I have always been very supportive and positive towards the owners.
    "Therefore I hope you know that what I am saying is considered, honest, constructive and from the heart."
    Hunt then detailed a 10-point plan he felt could turn around the direction of the struggling club.

    One of the points concerned Kean's position. The Scot has been hugely unpopular since being appointed to succeed the sacked Sam Allardyce soon after the takeover.
    Hunt wrote: "Publicly I have been asked to support the manager and I always have as I personally like Steve.
    "I have supported him from the start and have been desperate for him to do well. However, I am now of the opinion that it isn't working and he is ready to go.
    "He has lost the crowd and as a result of this evening's game has lost the dressing room as well - the players no longer want to play for him.
    "It is a shame and disappointing but we must act now to save the club. The board should be asked their opinion in who should be the new manager."

    On financial matters, Hunt urges Venky's to invest.
    He wrote: "As you are aware Barclays have asked for the owners to put 10million into the business.
    "This needs to happen and I am confident that this could only be a loan as we would increase the value of the club significantly.
    "With all the speculation in the press the playing staff value and overall club value is depreciating on a daily basis.
    "By putting an end to this the owners would be protecting their investment, putting their trust in the executive team and the club. The position with the finances is a cause for grave concern.

    "Auditors KPMG have put as many obstacles as they can in the way of signing off the accounts due to their concerns."
    Hunt asks to be promoted to chief executive and for Venky's to "give the executive team at Ewood Park, the latitude and authority to run the club."
    There are other points concerning PR strategy, the need for more regular visits by the owners to Ewood and officials to India and fears over loss of fans.
    "We are losing fans/customers at an alarming rate," Hunt added. "I am very concerned that fans are voting with their feet and not attending, not purchasing and not engaging with the club."
    The club were contacted on Tuesday afternoon concerning the letter but had no comment to make.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Neymar: Future remains a hot topic


    Santos president Luis Alvaro de Oliveira insists sought-after forward Neymar will not be going anywhere before 2014 and will fight to keep the rising star well beyond that amid reported interest from European superpowers Barcelona and Real Madrid.
    Neymar has long been the subject of transfer speculation, even after the 20-year-old agreed a contract extension last November that ties him to Santos until at least the 2014 World Cup.
    And the Brazil international's future remains a hot topic, much to the ire of Oliveira, who is determined not to let the striker go without a fight.
    Oliveira, whose club could win the Paulista championship this weekend, told Catalan radio station Ona FM: "It's a very difficult week and of course I'm angry when you hear things about Neymar. We are focused on the finals.

    "The odds on Neymar leaving before 2014 are the same as zero. I also hope that the player continues after 2014. We are going to compete with Barca and with Real at the end of the player's contract to keep him in Brazil for longer."
    He added: "It's not certain that if Neymar leaves Santos that he is only going to go to Barca. What's certain is that he is staying until 2014. After, the only decision will come from the player. I hope to compete with all those interested.
    "The player is very happy in Brazil and at Santos. I hope to win the heart of the player once again."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Robin van Persie: Interests Juventus


    Italian champions Juventus have expressed an interest in signing Arsenal striker Robin van Persie this summer.
    The Turin giants are looking to reinforce their forward line with veteran Alessandro Del Piero set to leave the club next month and on-loan striker Marco Borriello expected to return to Roma in July.
    "Van Persie is a great player," Juventus general director Giuseppe Marotta said to
    "He is a complete player and would be useful to any team. But he still has one year left in his contract with Arsenal.
    "We will try to put the icing on the cake this summer but the important thing is that the mix is good."

    Van Persie leads the Barclays Premier League goalscoring chart with 30 so far this season.
    Juve have been closely monitoring Liverpool striker Luis Suarez as well as Real Madrid forward Gonzalo Higuain.
    "Van Persie, Suarez or Higuain? They are three important players," Marotta said.
    "In fantasy football we could have the three of them playing in the same line-up but in reality, it is different.
    "If one of them arrives (here) is not because he will be the less talented as other things have to be taken into account, such as the financial aspect.
    "Moreover, if (Real Madrid coach Jose) Mourinho does not want to sell Higuain it will be impossible for us to get him and we also have to take that into consideration."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Podolski: New arrival at Arsenal


    Per Mertesacker believes Lukas Podolski can be a big hit in the Premier League with Arsenal.
    Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is determined to do his transfer business quickly this summer, finalising as many deals as possible ahead of the European Championships.
    Terms have already been agreed with Cologne on a 10million move for German international striker Podolski, but reports in France suggesting a club-record 18million deal with Rennes for Yann M'Vila was as good as done are understood to have been premature.
    Podolski, 26, will offer some much-needed back-up to Gunners captain Robin van Persie, whose own future remains the subject of much speculation.

    German centre-back Mertesacker - currently recovering from a season-ending ankle injury - believes Podolski can hit the ground running in August.
    "He has good physical power and that is what is needed in the Premier League," Mertesacker told Arsenal Player. "He is very quick too. It is a challenge for him, but he can cope with it.
    "Lukas is very confident. When he feels he has to be there for the team and when we needed a goal he was always there.
    "He was always one of the best players on the pitch and nothing could take him down. He is so confident and that is what I like. He is a fantastic striker. Everywhere he has played he has scored a lot of goals.
    "He is very good on his first touch when he has the ball in front of him, that is a big quality and very good for us."
    Mertesacker encouraged Podolski to join Arsenal and feels his international team-mate will fit right in.

    "I spoke to him several times and gave good references to this club. He will enjoy his time here," Mertesacker added.
    "Some things are different in Germany to this club, especially here at the training ground. You have no press, no supporters around here and you can concentrate on training.
    "It is very calm here and that is a good thing, especially for him because he is very famous in Germany and has played very well in the last big tournaments for them.
    "He is very popular and that can sometimes be dangerous because everybody is putting pressure on him, but here you can concentrate on yourself and on your team.
    "This is a great place for him to develop his performances as a footballer and a person, like I have in the last year."
    Mertesacker endured a testing first few months adjusting to the English game, but the 6ft 6in centre-half had started to produce some consistent displays before suffering ligament damage at Sunderland on February 11.
    "Sometimes I felt like it was very hard, especially when I first came here," he said. "It was tough to settle down [and I was] very quickly into the first squad.

    "There was sometimes a lack of performance, but I think you have to go through that to improve yourself. I am very comfortable here now and very proud to be with this club.
    "In general you are playing the best players in the world. You always have to perform at a high level. It is at a constant level and that is what makes the Premier League so good and so sharp."
    Wenger is expected to oversee arrivals and departures over the summer, with the departures possibly including Andrey Arshavin - who spent the end of the season on loan at former club Zenit St Petersburg as they won the Russian league - as well as veteran goalkeeper Manuel Almunia, midfielder Denilson and misfit strikers Nicklas Bendtner, Marouane Chamakh and Carlos Vela.
    Much of Arsenal's transfer policy will depend on whether they can finally secure automatic qualification for the group stages of the Champions League.

    They head to West Brom on Sunday for new England boss Roy Hodgson's final game in charge at The Hawthorns knowing victory would guarantee them third place.
    Winger Theo Walcott could be back in contention following a hamstring injury.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Rangers are still looking for a new owner


    Rangers' administrators expect to know on Thursday whether a deal can be done to safeguard the future of the beleaguered club by the end of this week.
    Duff and Phelps are evaluating three offers for the Glasgow giants after American tycoon Bill Miller withdrew his offer despite being granted preferred bidder status ahead of a rival bid from Brian Kennedy and the Blue Knights consortium.
    Two of the three bidders are new to the process, said co-administrator David Whitehouse of Duff and Phelps, who remains optimistic of progress before Rangers play their final match of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League season at St Johnstone on Sunday.

    Whitehouse did not wish to contemplate failure to find a buyer.
    "It would be a pretty bleak picture," he told the BBC on Wednesday. "But those offers we have on the table and the proposals in place are all capable of being delivered before the end of the season.
    "Whether it is likely, we are going to be in a better position to say that by midday tomorrow.
    "The structure of deals being discussed vary, but all are working to timetable that they have to be completed by the end of the season."
    Whitehouse revealed two of the three would-be purchasers have held discussions with Rangers manager Ally McCoist over player requirements and funding for next season.

    Miller favoured a 'newco' route to create what he described as an "incubator" company while Duff and Phelps aimed to take the club out of administration through a Creditors Voluntary Arrangement.
    Two of the three bids are planning a "similar" offer while a third favours a straight CVA, having proved to Duff and Phelps they have a means of securing current owner Craig Whyte's shares.
    Whitehouse added: "One of the bids is for a stand-alone CVA and there are a number of hurdles which need to be overcome. Our view is that it is challenging, but it is not impossible.
    "The purchaser who is talking to us about a stand-alone CVA has demonstrated to us that they have got a mechanism where Craig Whyte's shares are not an issue.
    "The key issue is funding the business at the end of the season.
    "In a stand-alone CVA there will be a period beyond the end of the season through which the business would need to be funded, to the point where the CVA effectively becomes unconditional.
    "After the creditors' meeting there is a 28-day period where technically people could appeal the CVA. There is a level of vulnerability during that period.
    "What we are saying to purchasers is if they want to do a stand-alone CVA, they have to put the funding in place to meet that period.

    "That again is a period where it would be difficult, not necessarily impossible, but it would be difficult to use season-ticket sales.
    "The attached burden is between 2million and 3million per month. That isn't a funding loss, that's a cash shortfall."
    Miller withdrew after conducting due diligence and described information he received in preliminary discussions as being "more optimistic than reality".
    The American businessman also pointed out opposition to his takeover bid by Rangers fans as a reason for his withdrawal.
    Whitehouse maintains the club can recover quickly, but was reluctant to reveal more about the three bidders.
    "If you wanted to be prudent, it would be quite deliverable to manage a cash scenario which would be break even, during that first year of domestic football," Whitehouse said.
    "There are lessons to be learned from the Bill Miller bid. He would have received probably a more favourable response if he had engaged closer with the fans at an earlier stage.
    "But I think there is a balance to strike between putting your head above the parapet and becoming involved in what is a very intense media scenario, and actually focusing in the first instance on getting a bid which is aligned to the interest of creditors and is actually deliverable.

    "The other parties that we are talking to would not be as reluctant as Bill Miller, in our opinion, to engage more openly once their position is verified."
    Sarah Bell from Duff and Phelps said a 'newco' deal would be quicker, but all new interested parties have adequate funding in place.
    She told Rangers' website: "Some fans may wonder why three bidders have suddenly emerged when Bill Miller was in preferred bidder status and then withdrew but they had been studying the situation.
    "What we can say is that without going into exact figures we are satisfied that all three parties have the financial wherewithal to complete a deal.
    "We have also taken the decision not to send out renewals for season tickets so that any party coming in to take over the club would have that funding.
    "I can say that HMRC are interested to see the merits of each one of the offers and they are open to further discussion with us.

    "We want to try to reassure supporters that while our duty as administrators is to secure the best deal for creditors, this is not just about the survival of the club but giving it the ability to thrive.
    "As I said we hope to be in running with one party by the end of this week."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 09-05-2012

    Steve Kean: Committed to Rovers


    Blackburn manager Steve Kean insists he and owners Venky's are staying long term while mystery surrounds the position of deputy chief executive Paul Hunt.
    Kean is unwilling to comment on widespread reports that Hunt has been sacked while nobody in the club's press department is able to confirm or deny the rumours.
    Speculation over Hunt's position comes a day after a letter he wrote to Venky's last December calling for Kean's removal surfaced in the media.
    Hunt also warned of growing financial difficulties and the danger of relegation from the Premier League, which came to pass with defeat by Wigan on Monday.
    It is unknown whether he received a reply but few of the recommendations to improve the club in his 2,500-word letter were acted upon.
    Kean, at a press conference to preview Sunday's game against Chelsea, said: "I am aware of the speculation but I can't, at this moment, confirm it.
    "That is all I want to say on that matter. I just want to talk about the Chelsea game."
    Venky's, the Indian poultry giants, have proved hugely unpopular owners since their takeover of the club in November 2010 while Kean has been the subject of vitriolic fans' abuse all season.

    That reached a nadir as relegation was confirmed but Kean, appointed by Venky's after the sacking of Sam Allardyce, has vowed to fight on.
    The Scot said: "It is very simple. The owners are here for the long term, I am here for the long term.
    "We are now taking one step backwards to push forward. I am confident we can get there.
    "We have the basis of a good young side, we just have to add more experience.
    "I said a number of weeks ago, it is a changing time for the club.
    "We have got new owners and I still think I am new into the job.
    "Moving forward, I think it is going to be an exciting time for the club.
    "We have taken a massive step back but we have to make sure we get back at the first time of asking.
    "The owners are not going anywhere, I'm not going anywhere."

    When asked if Venky's are the right owners for the club, Kean said: "100%."
    Hunt's letter, whilst not being directly critical, amounted to a damning indictment of the regime under Pune-based Venky's.
    In it he also called for greater executive power to make decisions on the owners' behalf and for more communication with and visits from officials in India.
    Its contents, and the club's now apparent inability to confirm whether Hunt is still in position, highlight the feeling of distance between Ewood Park and Pune.
    It often seems the only regular line of communication between the club and owners is through Kean, who says he has already held in-depth discussions with them over the make-up of next year's squad.
    Kean said: "They are the same as myself and the players, they are devastated. We are very numb.
    "We have taken a step backwards but we have to prepare a squad and the process has already started.
    "I have spoken at great lengths with the owners and now we have to start building a squad to hit the ground running and make sure it is one step backwards to take two forward, and we come back at the first time of asking.
    "That is the only objective now we can work on."

    Despite his regular contact with Venky's, Kean insists he can only comment on on-field matters.
    He said: "From my point of view, I can only come up and face you every pre-match or every post-match.
    "I know we have got many people employed at Ewood to put out different statements on different subjects.
    "I will never shirk away from any responsibility but I am not a financial director, I am not a chief executive or a marketing director.
    "I have been on radio shows and football forums on official websites and I have never not answered a football question.
    "The other parts of the club should be answered by the heads of those departments."
    Kean also deflected questions on the barracking he received throughout Monday's tortuous loss and the clear hatred towards him from supporters.
    He said: "Most of the time, at home, the fans were more supportive.
    "They are disappointed, the same as everyone. We are all disappointed we are not going to be in the league but we gave it a really good go."
    When asked if fans deserved an apology for Rovers' sorry season, he said: "You would have to ask each individual fan.
    "When I met the fans in and around this village [Brockhall, location of Rovers' training base], all they do is say we are with you and we support you.
    "I don't get anybody coming up to me and saying they deserve an apology."

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