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Thread: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

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    Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Salomon Kalou: Eyeing Feyenoord move


    Salomon Kalou wants to leave Chelsea and return to his old club Feyenoord after the Champions League final.
    Suspensions mean Kalou has a good chance of featuring in Saturday's European showdown with Bayern Munich.

    The Ivorian, who is a free agent this summer, has been in and out of the Blues team and is now looking for regular first-team football.
    He told The Sun: "Feyenoord can call me any time - they are the first name on my list.
    "Let me win the Champions League final and then I will think about Feyenoord. Yes, I'm serious!"

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Roberto Martinez: Set for Reds talks


    Wigan chairman Dave Whelan has given Liverpool permission to speak to manager Roberto Martinez, following an approach from the Carling Cup winners.
    The Anfield side are seeking a manager following Wednesday's departure of Kenny Dalglish.
    And Whelan told Sky Sports News on Thursday night: "If Liverpool are serious then I may lose him."
    Whelan has always said he felt the Spaniard was destined to manage one of Europe's top clubs and he would not stand in his way should one come calling.
    The Wigan chairman revealed the Reds made an approach earlier this afternoon and he gave Martinez permission to speak with them.
    "When they phoned me I was actually with Roberto having a meeting on what we are doing next season," he said.
    "I did promise Roberto and I have always said when a big club comes he would have permission to talk to them and they don't come any bigger than Liverpool.
    "I gave him permission and he will be talking to them soon - I don't know when, but quite soon.

    "When Liverpool sacked Kenny I have to say I thought Liverpool would be knocking on the door and sure enough they are.
    "I would love to keep him but I have told Roberto he has my permission to speak with Liverpool."
    Martinez will not be the only manager owners Fenway Sports Group speak to in their quest to replace Dalglish and he would be far from the populist choice.
    Questions have already been asked about his suitability for a club the size of Liverpool, considering he only has experience at the bottom end of the Premier League with Wigan and in the Football League with Swansea prior to that.
    However, his achievements at the DW Stadium - particularly this season when the Latics finished as the form side of the division with seven wins in nine matches to escape relegation once again while Liverpool were floundering - have been on a shoestring budget with players of considerably lower quality than those at Anfield.

    He is a forward-thinking manager and a great student of the game though and that has obviously gone in his favour in the first stage of the short-listing process.
    Whelan has no doubts about the achievements of Martinez, who rejected an approach for Aston Villa last summer, in his three seasons at the DW.
    But he knows if FSG do decide he is the man to take the club forward he will be powerless to stop the Spaniard leaving.
    "I would love to keep Roberto. He's brought youngsters on and is an absolutely superb manager," he added.
    "Unfortunately there are two or three clubs looking for managers and I think Roberto is on the list of every one of them.
    "Managers change clubs and sometimes you don't know what's happening and you have got to accept it and get on with the job.
    "I think he's going there with an open mind."

    Whelan added on ESPN: "I knew that the day would come when this happened, so it wasn't unexpected.
    "He is a good manager so I am not surprised a club like Liverpool want him.
    "It is up to him and Liverpool now. I can imagine he will want to manage such a big club but I would willingly keep him if I could.
    "He only signed a new three-year contract three months ago so I would be due compensation - but I would rather have Roberto than the compensation."
    Roberto Martinez factfile:
    1973: Born July 13 in Balaguer, Spain.
    1993: Begins his playing career with Balaguer in the Spanish third division.
    1995: Signs for Primera Division club Real Zaragoza.
    July - After only five league appearances for Zaragoza moves to Wigan, becoming one of the club's 'three amigos' alongside compatriots Isidro Diaz and Jesus Seba.

    2001: July - Joins Scottish side Motherwell on a free transfer after nearly 200 league appearances for the Latics.
    2002: August - Moves to Walsall.
    2003: January - Signs a short-term contract at Swansea and helps them escape relegation from the Football League on the last day of the season.
    June - Makes Swansea move permanent.
    2006: Joins Chester after more than a century of league appearances for the Swans.
    2007: February - Appointed manager of Swansea in League One, replacing Kenny Jackett.
    2008: April - Leads Swansea to the League One title.
    2009: May - Helps the Swans finish eighth in their first season back in the Championship, eight points off a play-off place.
    June 15 - Appointed Steve Bruce's replacement as manager of Wigan on three-year contract.
    August 15 - Kicks off his Latics reign with a 2-0 win at Aston Villa.

    2010: January 29 - Calls for competitive football to take a break during the transfer window after claiming players were distracted by speculation.
    May 9 - Despite rounding off the season with an 8-0 drubbing at champions Chelsea, Wigan finish 16th in the Premier League, six points above the relegation zone.
    June 2 - Fined by the Football Association and warned as to his future conduct after criticising referee Stuart Attwell for sending off Wigan defender Gary Caldwell during a match against Manchester City in March.
    August 28 - Wigan make a dreadful start to the season, losing their opening three league games in which they concede 11 goals and score none.
    2011: May 22 - A 1-0 win at Stoke proves to be enough to keep Wigan in the Premier League.

    June 9: Wigan chairman Dave Whelan confirms he has given permission for Aston Villa to speak to Martinez regarding their managerial vacancy.
    June 10: Martinez announces his intention to remain at Wigan and signs a three-year extension to his current deal at the DW Stadium.
    May: Wigan finish the season three points and two places above the Premier League relegation zone, with 42 points.
    2012: May 13: Wigan finish the season with a flourish. A 3-2 defeat of relegated Wolves is their seventh win in nine games, ensuring they finish six points clear of the relegation zone in 15th position, with 43 points.
    May 17: Wigan chairman Dave Whelan reveals managerless Liverpool have made an approach for Martinez and the manager has been given permission to speak to the Anfield side.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Ian Ayre: Wants to see progress


    Liverpool's new manager will be given the time to build the club back up again but must show progress towards a top-four challenge, according to managing director Ian Ayre.
    Owners Fenway Sports Group have begun the process of finding a successor for Kenny Dalglish after he was sacked on Wednesday.
    While Ayre insisted no targets had yet been approached a short-list would be drawn up as quickly as possible based on the advice principal owner John Henry and chairman Tom Werner had gleaned from "pre-eminent people within football".

    And while Dalglish was dismissed because poor league results in his first full season led to an eighth-placed finish, which FSG felt did not represent significant steps forward, his successor will not be judged immediately on results.
    "The important thing will be to see progress and that means different things," Ayre said.
    "Everyone will want to see that we believe we are going in the right direction and are moving up the table, achieving more, playing the right sort of football.

    "As long as you believe week-to-week, month-to-month, season-to-season you are building on something then people will be given time.
    "There is a difference between that and feeling you are not moving forward.
    "The manager coming in has an interesting time because he has a new structure, a good foundation, a good squad of players and an opportunity to build on that with the support of owners, which is quite important.
    "This ownership group has consistently supported, invested and stood behind the team."
    Numerous names have already been linked with the vacancy and Ayre admitted he started receiving calls from interested managers just hours after Dalglish's departure was announced.

    Reports claimed they had already started approaching targets - with former Porto and Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas named as one - but Ayre said the process only began on Thursday. Former boss Rafael Benitez, out of work and living locally, is seen as an unlikely candidate.
    Ayre said no-one was being ruled out at this stage but would not put a timescale on the recruitment process, although he admitted there were external pressures which meant there could not be too long a delay.
    "Of course we will have a short-list very quickly. There are lots of names being bandied around and lots of people showing interest," he added.
    "We will define what we are looking for and you shouldn't include or dismiss anyone on that basis.
    "It will be as short or as long as it takes but it is impossible to say how long that will be.
    "But we are going into a busy summer transfer window period and players will come back for pre-season so you want it in place to service that."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Robin van Persie: Contract runs out in 12 months


    Arsenal should have tied up Robin van Persie on a new deal long ago but do still have time to keep the sought-after forward, according to former Gunners captain Patrick Vieira.
    Van Persie's 30 Barclays Premier League goals helped propel the Gunners back up into third place and secure Champions League football at the end of a testing campaign at the Emirates Stadium.
    The 28-year-old Dutchman has not yet signed a contract extension to a deal which runs out in 12 months' time, with talks between Van Persie, manager Arsene Wenger and chief executive Ivan Gazidis said to have been inconclusive as the player now prepares for Euro 2012.
    Former skipper Cesc Fabregas was sold to Barcelona last summer, while contract rebel Samir Nasri eventually also left in a big-money move to Manchester City.

    Vieira believes Arsenal and Van Persie are at a crossroads.
    "Losing Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas last year was a big shock for Arsenal. If they lose Robin Van Persie this year it will be a drama," said Vieira, who was in London today to help launch ITV Sport's coverage of Euro 2012, where he will be a pundit.
    "With Samir and Cesc you can say 'okay those two are gone', but behind you know that there is Jack Wilshere and Van Persie still at the club - but if Robin comes to leave, that means next year it may be Theo Walcott, then the next year is it going to be Wilshere? It is going to be difficult for Arsenal to keep the top players," he added.
    "On the other side if they keep Robin they are going to send a positive message to all the clubs and to all the people around and I think it's really important to keep him."

    Vieira, who won three Premier League titles and the FA Cup four times while at Arsenal and is now football development executive at Manchester City, continued: "From Arsenal's point of view, I think that is something they should have closed a long time ago, but Arsenal don't need me to tell them that.
    "That is the way it is and they will have to deal with it.
    "It is a big risk because they lost Samir and Cesc last year. You never know and will have to wait and see what happens."
    Gunners boss Wenger has already moved quickly to bolster the squad for next season, bringing in German striker Lukas Podolski from Cologne.
    Vieira feels further impressive signings could help sway Van Persie.
    "Robin wants to win trophies. Arsenal have to show him he can do it with Arsenal," Vieira said.
    "The best way for them to get him to sign a contract is to bring players to the club who can show him that the club are in the same line as him.
    "It is really important because we know how Robin loves Arsenal - that is not the question, the question is how Arsene Wenger will convince Robin they can win trophies."

    City have been touted as one potential destination for Van Persie should he look to leave, with former team-mates Gael Clichy and Kolo Toure also already at the Etihad Stadium.
    Vieira believes City's first championship in almost half a century is only the start for the club backed by the billions of Sheikh Mansour.
    "It is a new generation who want to write history at the football club," he said.
    "They don't want to stop here, they want more success and I think that is what makes it really exciting for the next few years.
    "I am not just talking about the players and the team, I am talking about the football club, the brand.
    "The football club is in a different level now and we haven't achieved what we can achieve yet."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Matt Gilks: No regrets about staying


    Blackpool goalkeeper Matt Gilks is thankful he opted against joining last summer's exodus from Bloomfield Road.
    The Seasiders' last-day relegation from the Barclays Premier League prompted key figures such as Charlie Adam, DJ Campbell and David Vaughan to seek pastures new.
    Scotland international Gilks also had offers on the table despite enduring a campaign significantly interrupted by a knee injury.
    But with the Lancashire outfit chasing a second npower Championship play-off triumph in three years when they take on West Ham at Wembley in Saturday's final, the 29-year-old is happy he succumbed to boss Ian Holloway's powers of persuasion.

    "I was very close to leaving," said Gilks. "There were a couple of clubs speaking to my agent and we were waiting on answers.
    "Fortunately they took their time and Blackpool didn't. Ian Holloway was on the phone to me non-stop, I was going to turn it off at one point!
    "But he persuaded me to come back and, for myself, it was a footballing decision.
    "I'd missed five or six months through injury in the Premier League and I needed to play football again
    "Thankfully it was the right decision because of where we are, plus it's possibly been one of the best seasons I've had."
    Constant telephone bombardment aside, Gilks acknowledges his relationship with Holloway is not always harmonious, but insists he and his team-mates are full of admiration for a manager who has steered them to the play-off final on a nine-match unbeaten run.
    "He's a good manager," Gilks said. "He's a great coach and he's wants people to be honest.

    "Me and the gaffer had a few words and a bit of a row a few weeks back. I told him a few things that perhaps he didn't want to hear, but that's the honesty that he wants from players. It was all out in the open and the next day it was put to bed.
    "It shows in this squad with how well we've done this year that that's the policy we have.
    "I can't fault the guy. And it's not like you're sucking up to the manager, he's a good bloke.
    "We're all honest people at this football club and that's what he's instilled in us.

    "As players, we have total belief and trust in what he tells us to do. If we go up again, we owe massive, massive credit to him."
    As the hype surrounding a game often branded the richest in football grows louder, Gilks will happily back away from the noise before enjoying a summer away from the game.
    "I just completely switch off from it," he added. "You could almost say I'm not that into football really.
    "That's a stupid thing to say, but when you go home you've got to switch off because otherwise it's too much.
    "You need a break from football. I won't be watching the Euros, no way."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    David Gill: We believe we can compete


    David Gill is confident Manchester United will be able to challenge their big-spending noisy neighbours in the transfer market this summer.
    However, the United chief executive admits his club could quite easily be "out-muscled" by Manchester City when going for certain targets and concedes they may have to resort to charm to persuade some players to snub the millions on offer at the Etihad Stadium.
    Last Sunday Roberto Mancini guided City to their first league title since 1968 after a dramatic injury-time winner from Sergio Aguero pushed United into second on goal difference.
    United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is determined to stop City dominating the Barclays Premier League and will look to strengthen his squad this summer, with Lille midfielder Eden Hazard thought to be high on his shortlist.
    City have also targeted the Belgium international but Gill insists there is still good reason for players to spurn City's megabucks and move to Old Trafford instead.

    "We believe we can compete," Gill said.
    "Our turnover and our cash profits demonstrate we can invest in players as necessary. Other clubs may pay slightly more but we pay very good salaries.
    "The romance of United is there for everyone to see.
    "A player coming to Manchester United has the benefit of working under Sir Alex Ferguson, playing in front of 76,000 every week, and there is our history and heritage and the commercial spin-offs.
    "We shouldn't be shy or embarrassed or worried about not being able to attract top players because I firmly believe we can.
    "You can play with great players in a fantastic environment. That's a very good package so why wouldn't you choose that?"
    Last summer Ferguson thought he had pulled off a transfer coup by persuading Samir Nasri to move to Old Trafford after the France midfielder decided to leave Arsenal.

    But the 24-year-old opted instead to join City in a deal that reportedly saw his wage soar to 175,000 a week.
    Gill admits United may lose out on some signings this summer if a player's wage is a major factor in the transfer.
    "If a player says 'I'm relaxed I can either go to City, United or Chelsea and it will just come down to a money thing' then they may out-muscle us," Gill said.
    "But that's their choice. We say: 'fine, have our own parameters'. We have to make sure our salary ranges are appropriate."
    Gill was speaking at a ceremony in London where Ferguson was honoured as the greatest manager in the 20-year history of the Premier League.
    The Scot has seen off the challenges of many a side during his 26 years at Old Trafford and Gill thinks United are well-equipped to deal with their latest setback.

    "When you go back to when Roman Abramovich bought Chelsea in 2003 and they won the title in '05 and '06, and everyone said: 'this is it, Abramovich and Chelsea are going to be there for 10 years' and (now) it's nothing like that," Gill said.
    "Whilst the season clearly did not end on the best note we still ended up on 89 points, the title hasn't been decided on goal difference before.
    "We'd all recognise we underachieved in Europe this year given what we'd achieved the previous years but from a league perspective we're happy with what we've done."
    Carlos Tevez, who spent two seasons at Old Trafford before moving to the Etihad Stadium, rubbed salt into United's wounds when he was pictured holding an "RIP Fergie" sign during City's celebrations on Monday.

    The sign, which is thought to have referred to Ferguson's comment that United would only be underdogs against City "over my dead body", caused outrage and the Blues soon apologised.
    Gill refused to enter into a war of words over the incident, merely saying: "We move on. It was a bit strange but City apologised."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Bojan Krkic: Attracting interest but is happy in Italy


    Roma striker Bojan Krkic is attracting interest from England and Germany, according to the Spain international's father.
    The 21-year-old forward moved to Italy last summer after struggling to hold down a starting berth at Barcelona.
    The Catalan giants inserted a clause in the sale that allows them to buy him back for a set price once the transfer window re-opens.
    Bojan Krkic Perez has refused to rule out the possibility of his son returning to Camp Nou.
    He also claims that there are numerous other options to consider, but has sought to make it clear that no-one will not be pushing for a switch.

    "At the moment he is thinking about where he will play next season. That is his priority," Bojan senior told Blic.
    "He is feeling great at Roma, he is happy there and he would be happy to continue playing for the Italian side.
    "But there are other options. He could return to Barcelona.
    "He could also move to England or Germany. There are clubs from both of those countries that are interested in my son.
    "Which clubs? I can't talk about names just yet. We will see what happens in the next few days."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Mahamadou Diarra: Staying at Craven Cottage


    Fulham have agreed a one-year contract extension with midfielder Mahamadou Diarra.
    The Malian, whose former clubs include Real Madrid and Monaco, joined the Cottagers as a free agent in January until the end of the season.
    That deal included an option to extend his stay for another year, with the club confirming that the clause has now been activated.

    Diarra made 11 appearances last season as Fulham finished ninth in the Barclays Premier League.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Reja: Has quit Lazio after previously being persuaded to stay


    Edy Reja has announced that his Lazio 'adventure' is over despite club president Claudio Lotito expressing a desire for him to remain in his post.
    The 66-year-old twice tendered his resignation during the 2011/12 Serie A season but saw his offer to walk away rejected on each occasion.
    Reja eventually guided Lazio to a fourth-place finish and qualification for the Europa League, but has made it clear that he will be vacating their managerial hot-seat with immediate effect.

    "My adventure at Lazio ends here," he told
    "President Lotito gave me his support and asked me to stay on.
    "Even after my refusal, he invited me to reconsider and take a week to reflect. But I had already made my decision.

    "It seems as if we have not done anything these past two years, even though we twice qualified for the Europa League.
    "Of course, if we had hit our target of qualifying for the Champions League this year, things would have been different.

    "We had several injuries, which made the season difficult, but it hurts to think that fourth place seems to be worthless.
    "In addition the bid to strengthen in January went badly. After the transfer window, I found myself without five or six regulars because of drawn-out transfer negotiations which were never concluded."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 18-05-2012

    Charles Green: Assessing challenge to SFA sanctions


    Charles Green has signalled his intent to push through with a takeover of Rangers despite confirmation of a transfer embargo - but he revealed the club were still assessing a possible challenge to the Scottish Football Association sanctions.
    The former Sheffield United chief executive met officials from the SFA and Scottish Premier League at Hampden on Thursday and described talks as "very productive".

    An SFA appeal tribunal upheld the judicial panel's ruling on Wednesday night that Rangers be fined 160,000 and banned from registering players aged over 17 for 12 months.
    Green, who says he is fronting a consortium of about 20 investors, hopes to complete his purchase in early July with a Company Voluntary Arrangement, if agreed by creditors.
    He told reporters outside Hampden: "When we offered to buy the club, we realised what the potential was.
    "Last night's announcement was an option that we had considered."
    Green backed the club's decision on Wednesday night to consider a review of the decision and he revealed talks were ongoing.
    "We are discussing all the options that are available to the club," he said.

    The club, who are subject to an automatic SPL transfer embargo while in administration, could take the case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport or instigate civil action.
    Administrators, whose legal duty is to secure the maximum return for creditors, would struggle to justify spending money on a bid to overturn a sanction that prevents the club spending money on transfers. However, the Rangers Fans Fighting Fund paid the SFA appeal costs and could continue the fight.
    Rangers' case now appears to centre on the fact they believe the transfer ban, imposed as punishment to the withholding of 13million in tax payments, was not available as a sanction for the tribunal.

    However, the SFA articles of association include a clause that a judicial panel can implement any sanctions they deem appropriate.
    Green's meeting with the authorities on Thursday was pre-planned with several issues on the agenda.
    Green said: "The meeting has gone very well. It was the first time I met the SFA and SPL so clearly it was important to just speak to them and introduce myself.
    "The questions they were asking were the obvious questions of what our intentions are and where we plan to go.
    "We achieved quite a lot, we spoke to members of the board of the SFA and we spoke with executives of the SPL. I think it's been a very, very productive afternoon.

    "We are happy that everyone is positive in looking at what's the best for Rangers and the SPL. We are encouraged by the meetings."
    Rangers face more sanctions from the SPL if they fail to secure a CVA agreement with creditors. Clubs are due to meet on May 30 to discuss potential sanctions for a newco club, which Green plans to push through if the CVA is rejected.

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