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Blog - Transfer Talk

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Vermaelen braced for Gunners exit

ESPN FC's Mark Donaldson recaps the most important transfer updates from today.

With the start of club football literally just days away, several teams across Europe are scrambling to find that final player in the mix. Transfer Talk has a juicy few from the Premier League, La Liga and Serie A.

TOP PICKS: Arsenal line up Daniel Agger as a replacement for Thomas Vermaelen; Atletico Madrid want Andre Schurrle, but a Chelsea exit is unlikely; while Morgan Schneiderlin is set to stay with Southampton despite the summer player exodus for Saints. More below...

22.55 BST That's it for tonight, but get yourself ready because soon we'll have all the rumours from the UK's Thursday papers.

22.36 BST DONE DEAL - Germany international Shkodran Mustafi, fresh from winning the World Cup, was just completed his move from Sampdoria to Valencia on a five-year contract. The transfer is said to be worth eight million euros plus bonuses.

22.08 BST MLS news now and it is being reported that Sacha Kljestan is returning home to the U.S. and will sign for LA Galaxy. He has been in Europe since 2010 with Anderlecht.

21.50 BST The Independent is reporting that Newcastle United have agreed a 15 million-pound deal with Lyon for Alexandre Lacazette but the player is unsure the move would be right for him. One to keep an eye on.

21.11 BST Check out this blog from our Bayern Munich specialist, Susie Schaaf, as she gives her opinion on what Pepe Reina will bring to Bayern Munich.

20.47 BST Here's the full story on Juventus defender Mauricio Isla joining QPR on a season-long loan deal.

20.14 BST Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis says he may well have a surprise up his sleeve as he chooses from six transfer targets this summer.

19.55 BST DONE DEAL - Another signing for ambitious Nottingham Forest, who have snapped up Britt Assombalonga from Peterborough for a fee believed to be an initial five million pounds rising to eight million pounds with add-ons.

19.23 BST The Daily Mirror is reporting that Spurs have had a 10 millon-pound offer for Memphis Depay accepted by PSV Eindhoven. Nacer Chadli is set to join the Dutch club in part-exchange as the Netherlands player wings into White Hart Lane.

18.51 BST DONE DEAL - QPR have confirmed the signing of Mauricio Isla from Juventus on a season-long loan after he obtained his work pemit.

18.42 BST And here it is, the full story on Karim Benzema signing that new deal.

18.12 BST BREAKING NEWS - Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has contract extension with the club, and is now committed through to the summer of 2019. Full story coming soon.

18.09 BST DONE DEAL - Liverpool midfielder Conor Coady has completed his move to Championship side Huddersfield Town for an undisclosed fee.

18.07 BST DONE DEAL - Nottingham Forest have swooped on Sheffield Wednesday to sign Michail Antonio for a fee in the region of 1.5 million pounds.

17.58 BST Here's the full story of Southampton sign Saphir Taider on loan from Inter Milan.

17.30 BST Could a Netherlands international be about to follow Louis van Gaal to Manchester United? 

Goal.com says that Old Trafford executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has held meetings with AC Milan representatives to discuss the potential signing of former Manchester City midfielder Nigel De Jong.

The tough-tackling 29-year-old was a pivotal member of the Oranje side which reached the World Cup semi-finals in Brazil and it is rumoured that United are prepared to offer eight million pounds to secure his services. 

17.20 BST Nottingham Forest are on the verge of breaking their club transfer record for Peterborough striker Britt Assombalonga.

17.15 BST Basel captain Marco Streller has pledged his future to the club, admitting that he has turned down numerous offers from abroad.

The 33-year-old striker had been linked with a move to West Ham this summer but says he is determined to finish his career at the Swiss champions.

 "In recent years there have repeatedly been offers from abroad, including in the last days," he expressed in a statement on the club's website.

"After careful consideration and consultation with my family and those in charge of FCB, I have decided to continue my career in Basel. I still have big ambitions to continue to be successful with FCB.

"I have given the fans a promise that I want to finish my career in Basel, I want to keep this promise!"

17.05 BST Saint-Etienne sporting director Dominique Rocheteau says that the club are in talks to sign Monaco centre-back Nicolas Isimat-Mirin and Lyon left-back Timothée Kolodziejczak

17.00 BST Levante have completed the signing of goalkeeper Jesus Fernandez from Real Madrid as a replacement for Keylor Navas.

16.55 BST DONE DEALS! Southampton have confirmed that Algeria international midfielder Saphir Taider has joined the club on loan from Inter as part of a deal which sees troubled striker Pablo Daniel Osvaldo go the other way. 

Saints boss Ronald Koeman told the club's website: "It's part of our philosophy for the club to bring in talented young players who like to learn and develop themselves, and that's true of Saphir.

"First of all, he is a talented football player. He's 22 and has already played for Algeria at the World Cup. He can play as a controlled midfielder, but he can also move up around the box and up front."

Osvaldo's departure from St. Mary's comes after he was involved in a training ground bust-up with Jose Fonte last season. The 28-year-old striker was bought for a club record fee from Roma last summer but he will now spend the upcoming season on loan at Inter, with view to a permanent transfer.

16.40 BST Wolfsburg midfielder Luis Gustavo has dismissed speculation that he will leave the club this summer, insisting that he is focused on the Bundesliga season ahead.

The Brazil international has been strongly linked to both Arsenal and Real Madrid in recent weeks, with Wolfsburg's imminent capture of Atletico Madrid midfielder Josuha Guilavogui further fuelling speculation of the 27-year-old's exit.

He told Kicker: "I am here, I want to keep playing and help the team here."

16.30 BST Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has hinted at an interest in Fiorentina winger Juan Cuadrado. Read the full story here.

16.25 BST Milan forward Robinho has hinted that he is extremely close to completing a return to boyhood club Santos by posting an old picture of himself in the club's black and white jersey on his Twitter page.

16.20 BST Atalanta, Sampdoria and Cesena are locked in a three-way battle to sign Juventus forgotten man Simone Pepe.

The 30-year-old winger impressed in his first two seasons in Turin but has been sidelined for the past two years with a series of career-threatening injuries.

Reports in Italy say that Pepe now faces a crossroads as he must decide whether to fight for a place at the Italian champions after bravely battling back to fitness or whether to pursue regular first team football elsewhere. 

16.10 BST DONE DEAL! Aston Villa have announced that Republic of Ireland Under-21 winger Samir Carruthers has joined MK Dons for an undisclosed fee.

16.05 BST Out-of-favour Barcelona winger Ibrahim Afellay could be on the move to Besiktas, according to Sport.

The 28-year-old Dutchman joined the Catalan side from PSV in 2011 but a series of unfortunate long-term injuries have stalled his progress at the club.

New Barcelona coach Luis Enrique has informed Afellay that he does not feature in his plans for the upcoming season and Besiktas are hopeful of luring Afellay to Turkey in a cut-price deal.

15.55 BST Liverpool youngster Conor Coady is on the verge of joining Huddersfield Town in an estimated 500,000 pound deal plus add-ons.

The 21-year-old midfielder was regarded as one of the brightest talents in Liverpool's academy and is currently undergoing a medical with the Terriers after impressing on loan at Sheffield United last season. 

15.45 BST Manchester United coach Louis van Gaal has hinted at a move for Fiorentina winger Juan Cuadrado.

The 26-year-old shone at the World Cup for Colombia and has also been linked with Barcelona as a replacement for Dani Alves.

"I cannot talk about Cuadrado, because if I say something about him the price will rise," van Gaal told reporters.

Fiorentina sporting director Daniele Prade has already expressed his desire to keep Cuadrado at the club but admits that the player would be allowed to leave if his 50 million euro price valuation was met.

"We'll see the best situation, if there was an offer of 50 million he would be hard to give up, but at the moment there has been no official request," he told Corriere dello Sport.

15.30 BST Wolfsburg sporting director Klaus Allofs says the club have reached an agreement with Atletico Madrid to sign unsettled French midfielder Josuha Guilavogui.

The 23-year-old joined the Spanish champions from Saint-Etienne in a 10 million euro deal last summer but he struggled to establish himself in Diego Simeone's lineup and was loaned back to Les Verts for the second half of the campaign. 

"We have agreed a deal in principle with the player and Atletico," Allofs is quoted as saying in Marca. "Our goal is to have him here as soon as possible."

Guilavogui's arrival is likely to cast doubt over Luiz Gustavo's future, with the Brazil international linked with both Arsenal and Real Madrid.

15.15 BST Inter are expected to announce the loan signing of Southampton striker Daniel Pablo Osvaldo later today, with Algeria international Saphir Taider going the other way.

15.05 BST The signings of Philippe Senderos, Joe Cole and Kieran Richardson for a combined fee of 600,000 pounds are hardly likely to fill Aston Villa fans with too much confidence about the season ahead but The Times says that club owner Randy Lerner is now prepared to give Paul Lambert a 10 million pound transfer kitty to strengthen his squad.

Lambert is desperate to add some midfield reinforcements to his side and has targeted moves for Swansea City star Ki Sung Yueng, unsettled Manchester City winger Scott Sinclair and Chelsea misfit Victor Moses.

Elsewhere, Tottenham have been told by Marseille that highly-rated attacking-midfielder Florian Thauvin is not for sale while Celtic have expressed an interest in Wigan's Callum McManaman

14.50 BST Costa Rica international Celso Borges is on the verge of joining Ligue 1 side Evian from AIK in a two million euro deal.

The 26-year-old midfielder was forced to borrow a jersey from a fan in the crowd during AIK's clash against IFK Gothenburg on Monday after the club's kit man left his shirt behind due to him not being listed on the team sheet.

14.40 BST Ishmael Miller becomes the latest recruit at Blackpool, joining the Tangerines on a one-year deal with the option of a further season. 

The former Manchester City striker joins on a free transfer after being released from Nottingham Forest earlier this summer.

14.30 BST Chico Flores is on the brink of leaving Swansea City to reunite with former coach Michael Laudrup in Qatar.

The 27-year-old centre-back was involved in a training ground bust-up with Swans boss Garry Monk last season and suffered a loss of form as the Welsh side plummeted down the Premier League table after Christmas. 

Wales Online claims that Lekhwiya are preparing a four million pound bid for Chico who was denied a loan move to Deportivo La Coruna earlier this summer.

Should Swansea cash in on Chico, Monk will turn his attentions to signing Celtic's Virgil van Dijk or Napoli's Federico Fernandez as a partner for captain Ashley Williams.

Elsewhere at Swansea, winger Pablo Hernandez is close to finalising his transfer to Qatari side Al-Arabi while Celta Vigo are plotting a bid for out-of-favour midfielder Jose Canas

14.20 BST Charlton have confirmed that Iran international striker Reza Ghoochannejhad has joined Kuwait Sporting Club on a season-long loan.

14.10 BST New West Bromwich Albion signing Cristian Gamboa has promised Baggies fans that he will "run and run and run" for the club. 

14.05 BST Southampton are lining up a bid for Sporting Lisbon's World Cup star Marcos Rojo as a replacement for Luke Shaw.

13.50 BST Highly-rated Monaco winger Yannick-Ferreira Carrasco has ended speculation linking him with a move away from the principality club by extending his contract until 2019.

The Belgium under-21 international had been a transfer target for Roma this summer but he admitted that the prospect of Champions League football enticed him to stay at the Stade Louis II.

"I'm very happy to be a part of the ambitious project of AS Monaco," he told the club's official website.

"The extension of my contract is a real sign of confidence on the part of the coaches and management. And the chance to compete in the Champions League with my formative club is a source of pride."

13.35 BST Napoli winger Dries Mertens hopes that his Belgium teammate Marouane Fellaini can join him at the club.

Fellaini, 26, has been strongly linked with a loan move away from Manchester United this summer but the English club want suitors to pay the entirety of his wages. 

Partenopei coach Rafael Benitez has already expressed his interest in Fellaini and Mertens hopes that the transfer will come to fruition. 

"Fellaini is a great player and I know him well," Mertens told Il Mattino. "I hope he can wear our jersey, but we have to wait and see if he'll come to Napoli or not.

"Napoli want to do better than last season, that is the objective of the team. There are no favourites for the Scudetto this time round. I will say Roma had the most active transfer market over the summer and I consider them the most dangerous opponents."

13.20 BST Nottingham Forest manager Stuart Pearce says he is determined to keep Henri Lansbury at the club despite interest from Burnley.

Having seen Jamaal Lascelles and Karl Darlow sold to Newcastle in a seven million pound deal, Pearce is anxious not to lose any more players and hopes to tie the former Arsenal man down to a new contract. 

"I know there's been interest, but I would not want him to go," Pearce told the Nottingham Post. "I've had a long connection with him at international level and I want that to continue at club level.

"He is one of the better players in the Championship, if not one of the best in the top echelons of the division overall. Can he play in the Premier League? Yes he can in my opinion."

13.10 BST DONE DEAL! Liverpool have completed the signing of talented Spanish right-back Javier Manquillo from Atletico Madrid.

The 20-year-old joins Brendan Rodgers' side on loan and becomes the club's seventh summer acquisition following the arrivals of Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana, Emre Can, Lazar Markovic, Dejan Lovren and Divock Origi.

Manquillo told the club's website: "I'm very happy to have signed for a club like Liverpool. I think it's one of the biggest in Europe. Any footballer would want to come and play here.

"When they tell you Liverpool want to sign you, I think like any player, you are going to be absolutely amazed and you don't think of anything else than going straight there.

You can read the whole of Manquillo's first Liverpool interview here.

13.00 BST Poland international Ludovic Obraniak says he is considering leaving Werder Bremen just seven months after joining the Bundesliga side from Bordeaux.

The 29-year-old midfielder scored in Bremen's 3-0 friendly win against Chelsea at the weekend but says he is seriously considering a return to France as he fears a lack of first-team football will affect his international career.

"It's the last chance in my career to play in such a tournament [Euro 2016]," he told Bild. "The coach has a clear motto: anyone who does not play at their club will not be playing in the national team."

12.50 BST Inter Milan are closing in on the signing of Cardiff City midfielder Gary Medel -- and Nerazzurri legend Ivan Zamorano has likened the Chile international to Paul Ince and Diego Simeone. Read the full story here.

CB. Gary Medel -- Chile
Chile international Gary Medel is expected to be unveiled as an Inter player before the weekend.

12.40 BST DONE DEAL! Sheffield Wednesday have completed the signing of Slovenian defender Dejan Kelhar.

The 30-year-old defender, who has made six appearances for his country, has penned a short-term contract at Hillsborough following the expiry of his Red Star contract earlier this summer. 

12.35 BST Napoli forward Gonzalo Higuain says he is "honoured" to hear Lionel Messi would have liked him to be his strike partner at Barcelona, but claims that nothing would tempt him away from the prospect of winning the Serie A title in Naples. Read the full story here.

12.25 BST World Cup winner Skhodran Mustafi is on the verge of joining Valencia in an estimated eight million euro deal plus bonuses.

The 22-year-old centre-back is believed to have left the Sampdoria training ground this morning to fly to Spain where he is expected to undergo a medical before penning a four-year contract. 

12.15 BST Arsenal are lining up a bid for Liverpool defender Daniel Agger as a replacement for Thomas Vermaelen.

The Denmark international has dropped down the pecking order at Anfield following the 20 million pound arrival of Dejan Lovren from Southampton and has been linked with a return to his homeland to boyhood club Brondby.

However, The Independent says Arsene Wenger could offer the Dane the chance to stay in the Premier League and will plump for the 29-year-old centre-back in the wake of Vermaelen's imminent departure to Barcelona or Manchester United. 

12.00 BST Aston Villa have announced that Mali international Yacouba Sylla has joined Turkish club Kayseri Erciyesspor on a season-long loan.

11.50 BST Zlatan Ibrahimovic wants to return to Juventus before he retires, according to his former Malmo coach Stefan Hansson.

The 32-year-old Sweden international has won two successive Ligue 1 titles with Paris Saint-Germain, finishing as the league's top goalscorer in both seasons, but has continually been linked with a move back to Italy throughout his time in France.

Ibrahimovic won the Serie A title with Juventus on back-to-back occasions before the Bianconeri were relegated to Serie B as part of the Calciopoli scandal and Hansson says the enigmatic striker is keen to don the famous black and white jersey again. 

"He was young and crazy - now he's just crazy," the current coach of Indonesian club Mitra Cutra told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"We spoke on Skype a few days ago and he told me that he would like to return to Juventus, if not this year then next year. But it is not a matter of money."

11.35 BST Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke has hit out at Bayern Munich counterpart Karl-Heinz Rummenigge following his latest remarks on Marco Reus. Read the full story here.

11.30 BST DONE DEAL! Derby County have completed the capture of talented Real Madrid midfielder Omar Mascarell on a season-long loan.

The 21-year-old central midfielder, who is described on Real Madrid's official website as 'a thinker, the brain of Castilla... a natural organiser and technically gifted', will wear the No.33 shirt at Pride Park.

Rams boss Steve McClaren told the club's website: "He is a talented young player and I have monitored his progress for a number of years after first coming to my attention whilst in Holland at Twente."

11.20 BST DONE DEAL! Blackpool are slowly beginning to assemble a new squad ahead of the new season and the Tangerines have unveiled John Lundstram as their newest signing.

The 20-year-old midfielder joins Jose Riga's side on a season-long loan from Everton after enjoying similar spells at Yeovil Town and Leyton Orient last season.

Lundstram told the club's website: "It's a good challenge to come into. It's a Championship club, which is where I want to be playing, so I'm really excited to get started.

"We've got the whole season to try and build the team up, and get good relationships with everyone. It obviously won't come straight away, but with a full season we'll build relationships and hopefully build towards having a good finish." 

11.10 BST DONE DEAL! Hamburg have completed the signing of Nicolai Muller from Mainz for a fee in the region of 4.5 million euros.

The 26-year-old winger, who has made two international appearances for Germany, has signed a four-year contract with The Dinosaur and will wear the No.27 shirt at the Imtech Arena.

Muller's move was financed by international transport tycoon Klaus-Michael Kuhne who lent Hamburg 17 million euros to help them finance their summer squad building.

11.00 BST Liverpool are eyeing up a move for Inter striker Mauro Icardi as they look to fill the void left by Luis Suarez.

Brendan Rodgers is keen to add another forward to his squad after Loic Remy failed his medical at the club and he has identified the 21-year-old Argentine as the ideal man to complement Daniel Sturridge up front.

However, reports in Italy claim that Inter president Erick Thohir has no intention of selling Icardi and will not accept any offers for the player.

10.50 BST West Ham's attempts to sign a striker have taken another hit after Stuttgart turned down a seven million pound bid for Bosnia striker Vedad Ibisevic.

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce is desperate for a new targetman following news that Andy Carroll will be sidelined for four months with an ankle ligament injury and he has already been frustrated in his attempts to bring Peter Crouch and Samuel Eto'o to Upton Park.

The Daily Star says that Stuttgart have no intention of selling Ibisevic, who scored at the 2014 World Cup against Argentina, and hope to tie him down to a new contract.

10.40 BST Robinho is on the verge of completing a move from AC Milan to Santos with the player's agent saying talks had gained momentum on Tuesday. Read the full story here.

10.35 BST Hmm...not too sure about this one. Gazzetta dello Sport says that Manchester City are prepared to rival Real Madrid for the signing of unsettled Monaco forward Radamel Falcao.

With Manchester City already tiptoeing carefully in the UEFA corridors so as to not get caught tripping over Financial Fair Play barriers, this transfer rumour certainly seems a little far-fetched.

However, it doesn't there as Gazzetta also says that the English champions are prepared to allow standout pre-season performer Stevan Jovetic return to Italy on loan, with Juventus and former club Fiorentina interested.

10.25 BST DONE DEAL! Middlesbrough have announced that Kenneth Omeruo has rejoined the club on loan from Chelsea.

The 20-year-old defender impressed for Nigeria at the World Cup and Boro boss Aitor Karanka has taken advantage of his good relationship with former Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho to beat a number of clubs to his signature. 

10.15 BST Former Arsenal midfielder Alex Song and Dutch winger Ibrahim Afellay have been told that they will not feature in Luis Enrique's plans at Barcelona at all this season and have been encouraged to find new clubs.

10.05 BST DONE DEAL! Saint-Etienne have completed the signing of Norwich City's goal-shy striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel on a season-long loan, with view to a permanent transfer.

The 25-year-old Dutchman became the Canaries record signing when he joined for 8.5 million pounds last summer but he managed only one goal in his debut season in England as Norwich were relegated from the Premier League.

09.55 BST Bayern Munich CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has further fuelled speculation his club could make a move for Borussia Dortmund star Marco Reus and reveals that the player has a release clause of just 25 million euros, which can be activated next summer. Read the full story here.

09.45 BST Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone is on the verge of making Malaga full-back Jesus Gamez his eighth summer signing. 

The Argentine coach is desperate to rebuild a squad capable of defending the La Liga title and he has highlighted Gamez, who has spent the last nine years playing for Malaga in the Spanish top flight, as the ideal man to provide competition to Juanfran for the starting right-back role.

Marca claims that the two clubs have already agreed a fee and that the player will fly back from the club's training camp in Switzerland today to undergo a medical and agree personal terms. 

09.35 BST Lens' preparations for the Ligue 1 season have suffered a fresh blow after they were banned from signing any new players. Read the full story here.

09.25 BST Manchester City have finally announced the signing of former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard.

The 36-year-old signed for City's affiliate club New York City FC earlier this summer but will be on loan to Manuel Pellegrini's side until the MLS season begins at the turn of the year.

Lampard told the club's website: "Joining up with Manchester City is a fantastic opportunity for me to continue to train and play at the top level and make sure I am in top condition for New York City.

"It has been an amazing few days for me since the unveiling in Brooklyn and everyone connected with both clubs has been fantastic to me. This is a new chapter of my career and I'm really excited about the experience."

09.10 BST Hands up if you fancy keeping the bench warm at Bayern Munich next season!

The Bundesliga champions have been searching all summer for a reliable deputy to arguably the world's best goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and it seems they have finally found their man after agreeing a deal with Liverpool for Pepe Reina. Read the full story here.

08.54 BST: And more reports of Spurs' interest in PSV Eindhoven's Memphis Depay.

08.29 BST: The Angel Di Maria saga continues...

07.43 BST: AC Milan forward Robinho finally looks set to leave the San Siro.

07.36 BST: DONE DEAL Former Marseille defender Souleymane Diawara, 35, has joined Nice. The centre back, out of contract since June, has signed a one-year deal.

07.11 BST: Barcelona's Ibrahim Afellay could be closing in on a transfer to Turkey.

03.15 BST:  Bayern boss Pep Guardiola says he's 100 percent sure that defender Jerome Boateng will be with Bayern Munich this season. Story here.

Schurrle some mishtake?

Chelsea wouldn't be willing to part company with World Cup winner Andre Schurrle after just one season at Stamford Bridge, would they? The Daily Telegraph has dangled it out there, saying that Atletico Madrid -- still looking for reinforcements after a number of players left during the summer, including Chelsea's own Diego Costa and Thibaut Courtois -- are considering a bid for the powerful winger. They're likely to get short shrift, says the newspaper, but Chelsea do need to shed a foreign player to meet homegrown player quotas, so Atletico think it might just be worth putting it out there.

Schneiderl-in?

Here we go. Southampton have had enough -- enough of the derision, and enough of the transfer blogs spinning lurid tales of south coast doom and gloom amid a player exodus. No more, chairman Ralph Krueger says in The Guardian: Morgan Schneiderlin is staying well and truly put. The lure of the Tottenham pound -- apparently only 10 million of them, which has not gone down overly well -- wasn't enough. Southampton remain adamant that rumours of their demise amid the summer's exodus have been exactly that -- and that, with Saphir Taider about to arrive from Inter Milan and the likes of Fraser Forster on their radar, the good times are just around the corner. We'll see how it goes for Saints, but you can't help feeling that they are leaving it a bit late.

As a postscript, the Mirror says that a deal for Forster is actually pretty close: He'll join for 8 million pounds if, as seems likely at 4-1 down from the first leg, current Celtic are knocked out of the Champions League by Legia Warsaw on Wednesday night. That line isn't entirely new -- ESPN FC gave you the heads up earlier in the afternoon.

A waiting game

Spurs, meanwhile, are happy to wait it out -- which doesn't really seem like much good to anyone. Schneiderlin, teammate Jay Rodriguez, Villarreal defender Mateo Musacchio and PSV's World Cup star Memphis Depay are all still on the radar, the Daily Telegraph tells us, but various factors (not least the above) are turning these into slow burners. Meanwhile, Mauricio Pochettino is apparently happy to shed a number of last season's squad -- including captain Michael Dawson, who is available at the right price, along with Sandro, Etienne Capoue, Mousa Dembele and Nacer Chadli. It's fair to say that the past year or two in the transfer market have not belonged to Tottenham.

Regularly scheduled Arturo Vidal update

This from the Daily Mail, now, which has picked up some quotes from the Chilean media in which national team manager Jorge Sampaoli says the midfielder's knee injury -- that dogged him both before and during the World Cup -- is what is preventing Manchester United and Louis van Gaal from spending big on him just now. This is another of the summer's sagas playing out in the media that could do with being resolved. You can read that one here.

ALL-TIME HIGHEST TRANSFER FEES

1) £85m Gareth Bale -- Tottenham to Real Madrid, Sept. 2013

2) £80m Cristiano Ronaldo -- Man Utd to Real Madrid, June 2009

3) £75m Luis Suarez -- Liverpool to Barcelona, July 2014

4) £71m James Rodriguez -- Monaco to Real Madrid, July 2014

5) £59.7m Angel Di Maria -- Real Madrid to Man Utd, Aug. 2014

6) £56m Kaka -- AC Milan to Real Madrid, June 2009

A call to Armero

A little news from Italy to finish us off for now -- La Gazzetta dello Sport says that Udinese's Pablo Armero, unconvincing on loan for West Ham but impressive for Colombia at the World Cup, is on his way from Napoli to AC Milan. The Rossoneri's move for the left-back, though, is contingent on their current incumbent in the position, the Guinean Kevin Constant, completing his move to Turkish side Trabzonspor, who are now managed by Algeria World Cup coach Vahid Halilhodzic. Apparently Milan and Napoli had been set to swap the two players in January before Constant spurned the move south, but it looks as if Filippo Inzaghi's side will now get their man.

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