Football transfer rumours: Manchester City set to sign £40m Edin Dzeko? | Simon Burnton
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Today's rumours got the cold shoulder
Edin Dzeko's agents were guests of Manchester City at Wednesday's derby, reports the Telegraph, having also made a pre-match visit to the training ground. Should City complete a £40m deal for the Wolfsburg striker in January, Emmanuel Adebayor will be packing his suitcase and taking his particular brand of occasionally-inspired argument-creation off to Juventus. Also leaving Eastlands, at least if Ian Wright has anything to do with it, is Shaun Wright-Phillips. "I'd love him to get out of there," said Wright.
Bolton are to make their players available for transfer – that's right, even the one someone else might want – as they attempt to eat into their £93m debt. "If a Champions League team knocks on our door in January, that's the best time to sell an asset," said chairman Phil Gratside. The news has apparently sparked a £15m transfer scramble for said asset, more commonly referred to as Gary Cahill, with Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham, Internazionale and Manchester United all keen.
Liverpool have approached the Zenit St Petersburg striker Aleksandr Kerzhakov about the possibility of him coming to Anfield, starting three games, failing to score, getting booed a bit, spending half a season on the bench and then leaving again. "The talk about Liverpool is not baseless," he said. "They came to my agent with a proposal but I am happy in Russia."
Pepe Reina, meanwhile, has told Roy Hodgson that he wants out of Anfield, with Damien Comolli using his unsurpassed knowledge of world football to swiftly identify Schalke's Manuel Neuer and Maarten Stekelenburg of Ajax as prime candidates to replace the £20m-get-out-claused Spaniard. "Of course I do not trust entirely that I will be able to keep Manuel Neuer and all the other players," Schalke coach Felix Magath conveniently said. Staying at Anfield, however, is bench-bound winger Milan Jovanovic, who is ready to snub a move to Belgium. "Anderlecht are the biggest club in Belgium and I respect them, but I have a contract with Liverpool and I'll stay."
After training yesterday Rio Ferdinand played table football with Tinchy Stryder.
Everton are watching Alex Cruz, a diminutive winger with Spanish second division side Gimnastic de Tarragona. "Hopefully a great club will come in and put money on the table for me, because that would benefit Gimnastic and my career," the 5ft 5in speed-merchant said. In other foreign-players-you've-never-heard-of news, Birmingham have offered a trial to Slovenian 16-year-old Mitja Lotric, while Aston Villa and Chelsea are sniffing around Ghent's equally youthful Benito Raman. Blackburn want Porto's positively pensionable 26-year-old full-or-indeed-centre back Christian Sapunaru.
While in America at a mysterious rehab retreat, Wayne Rooney has been working to secure a trial for his former-Macclesfield-ace brother, John, at top Major League clubs, with Portland Timbers and Seattle Sounders looking like they're going to take the bait. "In America bearing the name Rooney won't carry half as much pressure," "a source close to Wayne" told the Star. The name Dos Santos doesn't carry very much pressure, but Tottenham misfit Giovani wants to bear it in America all the same, with Houston Dynamo happy to oblige.
And German striker Mario Gomez says gay footballers would play much better if they told the public of their preferences, a revelation that would allow them to perform "as though they'd been unshackled". "We have a gay vice-chancellor, Berlin's mayor is gay," he said. "Players should commit to their inclination." One wonders whether similar public confessions would have an identical effect on footballers with other sexual proclivities. Perhaps this is why no player has yet come out as being into S&M – they're happier performing with the shackles, thank you very much.
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