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Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
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Next
 Posted by Nick Ames
Aug 22, 2014

Barca eye Di Maria, Mario arrives

The FC crew talk about where Liverpool will fall in the table with their new Italian signing and how relevant AC Milan are now without their star.

The bottomless tumbler we fill with the latest transfer rumours, gossip and news overflows again. Don't stop us if the libation tastes familiar, it's still good to have a sip or two each day. Transfer Talk, drink it in...

TOP PICK - Barcelona are going to make a sensational move to sign Real Madrid wantaway Angel Di Maria. Sport claim Florentino Perez will not enter negotiations with Barca but the Catalan giants are willing to make a 60 million euro offer to tempt their arch-rivals into a deal. The Argentina has been left out of Los Blancos Supercopa squad for tonight fueling speculation he is about to join Manchester United or PSG.

Mario Balotelli arrived at Liverpool to complete a sensational 16 million-pound move from AC Milan. Read the full story here.

- Arsenal have been given a boost in their pursuit of Adrien Rabiot after PSG boss Laurent Blanc admitted the midfielder could leave. Read the full story here.

- Bayern Munich's attempt to sign Medhi Benatia appears to have faltered and stalled despite the player not travelling for a pre-season friendly against AEK Athens, as Roma are asking for 35 million euros while the player himself wants eight million euros a year in wages - an amount even Bayern are balking at according to Bild.

22.59 BST: That's it for tonight, but Saturday's rumours are coming very soon.

22.33 BST: Sky Sports are now reporting that Mario Balotelli has left Liverpool's Melwood training ground as he nears a move to the Premier League club. It could all be wrapped up on Saturday.

22.10 BST: talkSPORT are reporting that Napoli are now favourites to sign reported West Ham target Pedro Obiang from Sampdoria.

21.33 BST: AC Milan and Roma are keen to sign Arsenal target Adrien Rabiot, according to a report in le10Sport.

20.52 BST: Alvaro Negredo really went off the boil in the second half of the season, but could he really be on his way out? Some reports are suggesting that Real Madrid have made an enquiry about his availability. That seems fanciful, but let's not forget they did once sign Emmanuel Adebayor.

20.25 BST: We're hearing that reports from Chilean newspaper El Mercurio are suggested that Manchester have United made a 30 million-euro bid for Arturo Vidal, Juventus are standing firm and not willing to deal on those terms.

20.03 BST: Reports in Argentina suggest Man Utd have seen a 36 million-pound bid for Benfica forward Nico Gaitan rejected. United have been linked with him for years.

19.42 BST: Man Utd are not interested in Sami Khedira despite being short of options in midfield, according to the Daily Express.

19.18 BST: Lyon are hoping to loan Alassane Plea to Nice for the season with the player looking for more first team football.

18.59 BST: Sampdoria goalkeeper Sergio Romero has reportedly rejected a move to Dynamo Moscow in the hope Liverpool make a firm offer for him.

18.27 BST: Sunderland head coach Gus Poyet has warned top transfer target Fabio Borini he is primed to switch his attention elsewhere as the transfer window draws to a close.  "It's a daily thing. If something incredible comes in and we need to make a decision then, a player that we cannot say no to, then I am sure there will be a few phone calls saying 'now or never' both ways," he explained.

18.06 BST: Hull will be forced to spend nearly all of their Shane Long windfall if they are to land Blackburn's Jordan Rhodes as his replacement. Scotland striker Rhodes, who has scored 53 goals in 99 appearances since joining Rovers two years ago, has emerged as Steve Bruce's No. 1 target but will not come cheap after Blackburn rejected an initial offer.

17.34 BST: Fabio Borini's agent has yet again been quizzed by Sunderland officials in a bid to find out where exactly the Italian striker sees himself playing football next season, according to reports.

17.30 BST: Celta striker Nolito has seen his release clause bumped up to 18 million euros in a new contract he has signed with the club to keep him from the clutches of Europe's slightly more extravagant clubs.

17.23 BST: Porto president Pinto da Costa has closed the door on Jackson Martinez joining Inter Milan this window. He is quoted in Gazzetta dello Sport as saying: "Jackson Martinez is incredible. We won't sell the attacker."

17.20 BST: Well its a double whammy for Liverpool. Apparently Mario Balotelli has just rocked up at the training ground and will undergo a medical tomorrow. And talking of medicals, Goal.com have announced Samuel Eto'o is undergoing one as we speak!

17.17 BST: SURELY NOT!  Reports in Italy are suggesting Alessandro Del Piero is considering a move to India to join the Indian Super League's inaugural season! Apparently the Delhi Dynamos have offered him a deal to be their marquee signing and the Italian legend is considering it!

17.14 BST: Chievo are the only club so far to make an offer for Inter Milan star Ruben Botta. His agent, Sergio Levinton, told FC Inter News: "Chievo have made an official offer to Inter. The club are very genuine and have real intentions of being able to count on Ruben on loan for this season."

17.10 BST: Doing the rounds on Twitter but a rumour nonetheless. Apparently Aston Villa are hoping to get Mohamed Salah of Chelsea on loan. What a coup that would be.

Is Mohamed Salah heading to Aston VIlla on loan? Twitter seems to think so...

17.05 BST: I genuinely apologise for all the AC Milan updates but Sport MediaSet have claimed the Rossoneri are about to sign Blerim Dzemaili for three million euros. Last one.

17.00 BST: And yet more from AC Milan as they have spoken to Chelsea about the availability of Marco Van Ginkel on loan. Gianluca Di Marzio is spending that Mario Balotelli money quickly for the Rossoneri.

16.54 BST: Bad news for Spurs and Manchester United fans as PSV wonderkid Memphis Depay signs a new four year deal!

16.50 BST: It is going to be AC Milan and strikers from now until September. Gianluca Di Marzio is reporting now that Roma forward Mattia Destro is their latest target and Adriano Galliani has been on the phone to Roma about a deal.

16.43 BST: It is no secret that Southampton goalkeeper Artur Boruc was not a happy bunny when Frazier Forster was signed from Celtic. And it appears Serie A side Cagliari want to take advantage of the situation and are willing to make a suitable offer to lure him to Italy, according to Tuttosport.

16.36 BST: Not the news any prospective buyer would want to hear. Juventus are set to give Paul Pogba a huge new contract to keep him from the clutches of Europe's mega-money boys PSG and Real Madrid, according to Sport MediaSet.

Paul Pogba is set for a bumper new contract to keep him from signing for Europe's moneymen, PSG and Real Madrid.

16.30 BST:  Not what anyone had been expecting over the past week or so, but that is the crazy world of football transfer windows!

16.26 BST: Sassuolo are giving up on signing Marco Storari from Juventus and are keen to bring in Andrea Consigli from Atalanta instead, according to Tuttomercatoweb. Apparently this minnows' search for a new goalkeeper is proving much harder than they imagined.

16.22 BST: DONE DEAL! Hartlepool sign Sunderland youngster Scott Harrison on loan!

16.20 BST: Hellas Verona are hoping to sign Marco Donadel from Napoli according to Tuttosport. 

16.13 BST: More weight to the 'Mario Balotelli is a risk' argument for Liverpool.

16.11 BST: Don't you just hate it when football managers are so coy on transfers!

16.05 BST: DONE DEAL! Real Betis sign Sunderland midfielder Alfred N'Diaye on a permanent deal after having him on loan last season.

16.00 BST: Liverpool midfield enforcer Lucas Leiva has told Vavel Brazil he is flattered by the interest from Napoli this summer but is only thinking of his Anfield future at the moment. He said: "Something could happen but now, I repeat, I am concentrating on having a good season with Liverpool." 

15.54 BST: DONE DEAL! Stefan Adrian Popescu has signed for Cagliari from Astra but have immediately loaned him to Ternana.

15.50 BST: More on that deal seeing Federico Fazio to Spurs from Sevilla. Vlad Chiriches is reportedly close to signing for Roma.

15.43 BST: That won't please Man United fans. Louis Van Gaal has told reporters at his press conference today: "The fans can think like that (wanting signings) but it's not easy trying to buy and sell in the football market." But we all know United need signings, and fast.

15.38 BST: Any fan of Greek football will know the sad decline of the career of Sotiris Ninis. Well, it has taken another turn for the worse after Parma terminated his contract by mutual consent.

15.32 BST: Udinese have also entered the race to sign Amauri from Parma according to Tuttosport. Apparently Parma will look to sign Duvan Zapata from Napoli should the striker leave.

15.28 BST: We brought you a similar story earlier but here is AS' take on the matter.

15.25 BST: Newly promoted Empoli are looking to sign a raft of players from the clubs above them. According to Tuttosport, they want Piotr Zielinski from Udinese as well as Ruben Botta of Inter Milan and possibly Parma striker Amauri. Ambitious.

15.21 BST: And here is what ESPN correspondent Matteo Bonetti thinks of AC Milan's business.

15.20 BST: Italian football expert Adam Digby with a damning verdict on AC Milan's potential transfer business.

15.17 BST: Sunderland defender Cabral has been told he can leave the club. Read the full story here.

15.11 BST: Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert has insisted players still want to come to the club because of the ambition of it. He told reporters: "Listen, no doubt about it, it's a massive club, the expectancy level is huge and I have got no worries on that whatsoever, on Aston Villa being a big draw for any footballer."

I know plenty of people from Aston who might disagree.

15.05 BST: The Southern Daily Echo have confirmed that Southampton will not entertain a swap deal with Tottenham involving Andros Townsend and Morgan Schneiderlin.

15.00 BST: Everton are closing in on a 3.5 million pound move for West Ham outcast Mohammed Diame. According to reports, Roberto Martinez is keen to reunite with the Senegalese midfielder having brought him to English football when the pair were at Wigan, and bolster the Toffees' squad ahead of the new campaign.

14.53 BST: EXCLUSIVE! Liverpool have not made a contract offer to Samuel Eto'o despite claims to the contrary, a source has told ESPN FC.

14.50 BST: According to L'Equipe, Fiorentina and Lazio are chasing Bordeaux wing wizard Jaroslav Plasil and have made contact about his signing. However, there is a chance he could extend his deal with the current Ligue 1 leaders.

14.42 BST: I'm not sure how far exactly Gazzetta dello Sport think 16 million pounds will go but they are reporting that AC Milan are lining up several replacements for outbound Mario Balotelli. According to the report they want to finalise deals for Alessio Cerci and Adrien Rabiot as well as bring in one of Jackson Martinez, Radamel Falcao or Marseille striker Andre-Pierre Gignac.

14.37 BST: A flurry of transfer activity as Evian confirm the signing of Yeltsin Tejeda from Deportivo Saprissa in Costa Rica! Read the full story here.

14.33 BST: DONE DEAL! Hannover have signed Lyon striker Jimmy Briand!

14.29 BST: The picture we've all wanted to see! 

14.25 BST: What is there to be so secretive about Brendan!?

14.18 BST: Another from Le 10 Sport who say Edinson Cavani is not for sale. PSG have thought long and hard this summer about selling but have opted to keep the Uruguayan after several clubs balked at his 50 million minimum asking price and the realisation they have only two out-and-out centre forwards in their squad.

14.13 BST: Former Liverpool target Diego Capel has had his uncle tell the media, and quoted in A Bola, as saying he is not interested in leaving Sporting Lisbon and is looking forward to a season in the Champions League.

14.10 BST: Swansea are interested in signing Timothy Kolodziejczak from Nice, according to Le 10 Sport. However the Welsh club face competition from St Etienne who are also interested in securing his services.

14.06 BST: Liverpool just cannot stop spending. It's an epidemic on Merseyside as the Reds are set to offer big bucks to sign Anderlecht wonderkid Aleksandr Mitrovic. He will cost around 10 million euros according to The Metro and has been dubbed the 'new Zlatan.' Make of that what you will.

14.00 BST: In an interview with GQ magazine, Atletico Madrid winger Arda Turan has said if he was living in a fantasy and could pick any team to play for he would choose Barcelona under Pep Guardiola. He said: "Making assists for Messi would not have been bad."

In another world and Arda Turan would have been providing the assists for Lionel Messi according to the Turkish international.

13.54 BST: Juventus are playing a sneaky game with Benfica over Luisao. According to A Bola, the Italian champions want to wait until the final day of the transfer window when Benfica will be more likely to accept an offer of three million euros before going back to the Portuguese club for the Brazilian. As you do...

13.48 BST: Montpellier president Louis Nicollin is hoping Swansea City target Benjamin Stambouli opts to remain at the Ligue 1 club, as he spoke to reporters. However, L'Equipe claim a five million euro offer has come in from Lyon which could swing the scales towards a move for the midfield maestro.

13.41 BST: A Bola are reporting Besiktas may be looking to loan Juan Quintero from Porto for the season. The former Arsenal target could be available on loan for just one million euros for the season.

13.36 BST: Fulham have told any suitors for Bryan Ruiz they will have to pay seven million euros for the Costa Rican. Turkish side Besiktas are the latest to be linked but only want to part with four million euros despite agreeing personal terms with the mercurial forward.

13.32 BST: Jose Mourinho being quite frank on Chelsea's transfer business. Also said about Petr Cech's situation: "Top professional, working as always, being a good man, as always. Totally happy? I don't believe."

13.32 BST: Peruvian striker Paolo Guerrero has told Globo Esporte that he had offers from Premier League clubs but opted to remain at Corinthians. He has not ruled out a return to Europe though and said: "I know there was interest from West Ham, I think they contacted Corinthians. But I can't say more because I don't know the details.Which player doesn't want to return to Europe? They all do."

13.28 BST: Danny Welbeck won't be short of suitors!

13.21 BST: Real Betis have made an enquiry for Nancy midfielder Francois Bellugou according to L'Equipe.

13.17 BST: Put your claws away Christian! A damning verdict on Liverpool's marquee summer signing.

13.14 BST: Manuel Pellegrini clearly not a happy bunny at being told his striker Alvaro Negredo has been linked with a move back to Spain. He told reporters: "There are so many rumours. When the rumour is ready, it is finished, I will talk about that."

Alvaro Negredo is not lying down this summer despite his ankle injury and apparently wants a move back to Spain.

13.09 BST: Veteran striker Danijel Ljuboja is on the radar of several clubs in Qatar and Sporting Dijon, according to L'Equipe, following his amicable contract termination with Lens this summer.

13.02 BST: German wonderkid Max Meyer has said he is not at all bothered by rumours linking him to Arsenal and Chelsea. Read the full story here.

12.57 BST: Angel Correa will in January complete his move to Atletico Madrid after the transfer was delayed due to his heart problem. Correa was to leave San Lorenzo for the champions but a tumour on his heart was discovered during his medical, postponing the deal until the problem was resolved, according to AS.

12.49 BST: Apparently Sevilla boss Unai Emery has told a press conference that Federico Fazio is set to join Spurs despite training with the club this morning. Read the full story here.

12.45 BST: Reports in Spain are suggesting Wigan Athletic could lose experienced defender Ivan Ramis to Deportivo La Coruna.

12.39 BST DONE DEAL! Former German international Manuel Friedrich has signed a deal with Indian Super League team Mumbai FC! He will be joining the likes of Luis Garcia, David Trezeguet and Robert Pires in the sub-continent next year!

12.34 BST: DONE DEAL! A surprise deal for Swansea but a good signing nonetheless! Read the full story here.

12.26 BST: Will Man Utd fans shed a tear at the news The Telegraph are reporting Danny Welbeck has been told he can leave the club. It is thought Arsenal and Tottenham have both been put on red alert as they will both compete for his signature.

12.21 BST: And here we go with Valencia again as AS report Los Che are keen to sign Jackson Martinez from Porto. The Colombian only put pen to paper on a new deal in Portugal nine days ago but it is thought Peter Lim is prepared to sanction a 35 million euro bid for the striker to help return the Mestalla club to its former glory.

Jackson Martinez could be Valencia's marquee signing if Peter Lim gets his way.

12.16 BST: Valencia are set for a ten-day 50 million euro splurge on Europe's top young talent now that Peter Lim has taken over the club. Marca claim Los Che are keen to strengthen their squad and challenge the likes Real Madrid and Barca at the top of La Liga.

12.12 BST: Barcelona are expected to renew their interest in Atletico Madrid midfielder Koke after seeing their future transfer plans needing to squeezed into the next few days. The FIFA ban means Barca are on a trolley-dash around Europe and see Koke as a key man they want, according to Mundo Deportivo.

12.08 BST: DONE DEAL! Real Mallorca sign Olympiakos striker Marko Scepovic!

12.04 BST: Here is Xavi speaking about our TOP PICK above.

12.00 BST: Despite European reports claiming Monaco are close to signing Toby Alderweireld, a report in England has emerged claiming West Ham are keen to take the Belgian defender on loan for the season as well.

11.54 BST: A clear response from Sevilla about the interest from Tottenham in Federico Fazio. He's training in Seville as normal!

11.50 BST: Belgian defender Toby Alderweireld could be set to end his Atletico Madrid hell and sign for Monaco according to reports. He will sign on an initial loan deal costing two million euros with a further ten payable to Atleti should they want to make the deal permanent.

11.46 BST: Parma are hoping to utilise their good relationship with Juventus to sign Paolo De Ceglie and Simone Pepe from the Old Lady. Tuttomercatoweb say Parma are confident over De Ceglie but Pepe could opt to stay at Juve after recovering from his injury problems to try and impress new coach Max Allegri.

11.41 BST: Juventus could be tempted to go for Palermo striker Abel Hernandez as targets such as Radamel Falcao from Monaco and Javier Hernandez of Manchester United are proving a little too dear the Old Lady, according to reports in Italy.

11.38 BST: It's been in the news for over a day but it still seems unreal.

11.33 BST: According to Corriere della Sera, Roma have now begun negotiations with Tottenham over the transfer of Vlad Chiriches. But that was before today's revelations about Medhi Benatia came to light. Who knows!?

11.28 BST: Give it a rest! Chilean newspaper El Mercurio has reported Manchester United have made a 53 million euro bid for Arturo Vidal plus Javier Hernandez but it is problems with the midfielder's knee that is holding up the deal. Ridiculous!

11.21 BST: DONE DEAL! West Brom pick up free agent Georgios Samaras. Read the full story here.

11.19 BST: Partizan Belgrade defender Vojislav Stankovic is close to signing for Palermo according to Tuttomercatoweb. The Serbian is due to fly to his new club on Monday and sign a deal worth 600,000 euros per year.

11.15 BST: Elche have confirmed they have terminated the contract of midfielder Cristian Sapanaru with two years left to run on his contract. Harsh.

11.13 BST: One staying and one going at Lazio as Tuttomercatoweb exclusively reveal young defender Emilliano Ilari is set to join Grossetto on loan for the season.

11.08 BST: Lazio are negotiating the new contract of Ogenyi Onazi. According to reports the Italian club don't want to lose the Nigerian international amid interest from other unnamed Serie A clubs and are keen to tie him to a new deal.

11.04 BST: BUT!!!!

11.03 BST: According to Il Messaggero Roma are scouring the transfer market for a Medhi Benatia replacement. The central defender is all but confirmed as the Italians wrangle over a few extra million to bring the transfer to 35 million euros. Apparently Roma will swoop for Lille defender Marko Basa who coach Rudi Garcia knows well from his time there.

10.58 BST: A shame but reports from Press Association are suggesting talks between Mario Balotelli's representatives and Liverpool are progressing well but there is little chance the deal will be completed in time for a dream return against Manchester City on Monday.

10.55 BST: Benfica are clearly keen to rebuild their depleted squad.

10.52 BST: Wolfsburg have rejected rumours they are interested in signing Arsenal striker Lukas Podolski despite reports from Bild saying they wanted the World Cup winner. Sporting executive Klaus Allofs also rubbished rumours the club were in talks for Salomon Kalou.

10.46 BST: Manchester United are expecting a call from Zinedine Zidane about one of their players an exclusive from Tuttomercatoweb can confirm. Apparently Real Madrid's Castilla squad manager wants to bring in Gustavo Varela and is prepared to loan the defender for a year with a purchase option worth five million euros next summer.

10.41 BST: Liverpool want a behaviour clause inserted in Mario Balotelli's contract. Seriously... Read the full story here.

10.38 BST: Arsenal could be turning their attention to West Ham defender Winston Reid according to the Mirror. Having seen an 8 million pound bid rejected by Olympiakos for Kostas Manolas, the Gunners are now prepared to go for the cheaper option of the New Zealander who only has a year left on his contract.

10.34 BST: Reports in the Express claim Manchester United flop Anderson could finally be returning to Portugal. Earlier, his old club Porto were touted for a move but it appears the Brazilian could be a 5.5 million target for Sporting Lisbon. Given the two clubs' recent negotiations for Nani and Marcos Rojo, it appears this deal could be done relatively smoothly. Well... smoothly for Man Utd anyway.

10.29 BST: SOOOO, all this talk about Angel Di Maria being the No.1 target for Louis Van Gaal and apparently the Dutchman wants to pass up signing him. According to the Express, he doesn't want to stifle the progress and minutes Adnan Januzaj will spend on the pitch.

10.25 BST: Ronald Koeman is standing defiant despite the intense speculation surrounding Morgan Schneiderlin. He told a press conference: "Nothing depends on offers (for Schneiderlin) because he will stay in Southampton." 

Take that Tottenham!

10.20 BST: Are Hull prepared to spend the full 12 million pounds they received from the Shane Long transfer on Blackburn goalscorer Jordan Rhodes? According to the Hull Daily Mail that is what Steve Bruce has been quoted for the Scottish striker.

10.16 BST: Liverpool want to bring in Samuel Eto'o despite reports they are close to sealing a move for Mario Balotelli. According to the Independent Brendan Rodgers is still keen to hold talks with the Cameroon striker, after his proposed move to Ajax fell through this week.

He has to give somebody a thumbs up after delaying his move to Ajax caused the Dutch champions to pull the plug.

10.13 BST: Newcastle United and West Ham are set to battle it out to sign Manchester City outcast Micah Richards according to the Manchester Evening News. They also claim young defender Matija Nastasic is also available for 12 million pounds amid interest from several Serie A clubs. Manuel Pellegrini is said to be extremely keen to cut his squad size down.

10.09 BST: Looks like Burnley have missed out on yet another target!

10.05 BST: Chelsea wonderkid Marco van Ginkel could be on his way out of the club but only on a loan deal. The Dutchman's agent Karel Jansen has told Algemeen Dagblad: "Of course Marco wants to fight for his chance, but there must be some perspective.

10.02 BST: NOLBERTO SOLANO SIGNS! Unfortunately it is not for a club in the Premier League. The former Aston Villa and Newcastle legend is set to sign for American youth team Ironbound Soul CL as a technical director according to the Daily Mail. What a lucky lucky lucky club.

09.58 BST: No bid apparently despite reports Spurs are lining up an 11 million pound offer for the Frenchman.

09.53 BST: Angel Di Maria has supposedly rejected a new contract with Real Madrid according to the North Wales Daily Post. No-one else seems to be running the story, so where they got the information from, we don't know, but apparently the Argentine was offered a new deal.

09.50 BST: Burnley are hopeful of securing the signing of James McArthur from Wigan Athletic according to the Lancashire Telegraph. The Clarets have already had a bid turned down for the experienced Scot but are confident a new five million pound bid will be accepted.

09.44 BST: According to Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzio, AC Milan have been offered many strikers, including Chelsea misfit Fernando Torres. But it is Porto's Jackson Martinez they want to sign however his 35 million euro price-tag is thought to be well out of reach for the Italian giants.

09.40 BST: After two dreadful starts to the season for Marseille and Monaco, ESPN correspondent Julien Laurens evaluates what both need to do in the transfer market over the next ten days. Read his thoughts here.

09.36 BST: Marca claim Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos have both pleaded with Florentino Perez not to sell Angel Di Maria this summer. And despite Carlo Ancelotti's comments yesterday, the Italian would begrudgingly be letting him go should Los Blancos find a buyer. 

09.33 BST: Surely not!? Sport seem to think so...

09.29 BST: Barcelona are scared that Marco Reus already has an agreement with Bayern Munich according to Mundo Deportivo. The report claims Barca enquired about the German but have been told the deal is a no-go, leading to speculation he has already signed with Borussia Dortmund's arch rivals.

09.25 BST: Dani Alves gave a frank interview about his Barcelona future yesterday. Here is what he had to say: "When I was asked on my return to Barcelona about this, I left it very clear that I needed to talk with Luis Enrique and to feel that he really counted on me, because it is him I am going to work will all year. I wanted to know his intention, to know what they really wanted from me. He said they were counting on me, so I am counting on him. It is about the two of us."

Alves also went on to say he felt he was not always 'valued' by club figures and was frustrated by some sections of the Catalan faithful who whistled and booed him in last week's Gamper Trophy game. Read the full story here.

09.17 BST: The future of PSG wonderkid Adrien Rabiot remains in doubt as Laurent Blanc admits the midfielder could leave. But where!? Read the full story here.

09.15 BST: West Ham striker Modiba Maiga is set for a return to France after an indifferent spell in England to join newly-promoted Ligue 1 side Metz, according to Foot Mercato.

09.12 BST: Salmon Kalou is being courted by Wolfsburg, Eurosport say. The Ivory Coast international will reportedly hold talks with the Bundesliga club on Friday. Lille would be willing to let the former Chelsea forward go for five million euros.

09.09 BST: DONE DEAL! A flurry of early done deals as Fulham sign Tiago Casasola from Boca Juniors on a three-year-deal.

09.04 BST: DONE DEAL! Stuttgart's New Zealand international Marco Rojas has been sent on loan to second tier club Greuther Furth. The attacker has failed to leave his mark at Stuttgart last season, after suffering an injury in last year's preseason.

09.00 BST: Bild reports that Medhi Benatia wants to earn 8 million euros gross, and Roma want 35 million euros sent their way, and that the negotiations between Bayern, the player and Roma have currently come to a standstill. 

08.46 BST: Marca believes there is a "cold war" between Sami Khedira and Real Madrid. Talks broke down in July, and neither player nor club made any move to get them restarted since. Madrid would like to sell him now, but Khedira apparently fancies moving on a free when his deal ends next summer.

08.31 BST: L'Equipe reports Cedric Bakambu, 23, could leave Sochaux for the Premier League. Crystal Palace and Swansea City will have to meet their two million euro asking price if they are to pick up the former France under-21 international striker.

08.08 BST: Werder Bremen CEO Thomas Eichin has told a press conference that he "can't do anything" and added: "Realistically there will be no more signings." The supervisory board refused to hand more money to him, and coach Robin Dutt said: "We had no money yesterday, we have no money today and we will not have any money tomorrow." The club had been linked to Fulham's Bryan Ruiz.

07.45 BST: RMC reports that Monaco are closing in on Brazilian defender Wallace. The youngster only signed for Portuguese club Braga from Cruzeiro in June, but looks like he may not even play a game for his new side, switching instead to the Stade Louis II.

07.25 BST: DONE DEALThe Vancouver Whitecaps traded Nigel Reo-Coker to Chivas USA for fellow midfielder Mauro Rosales. Story here.

07.15 BST: Transfer Talk hadn't actually seen this rumour yet, but ESPN FC correspondent Jonathan Johnson suggests you ignore if it comes your way...

Play it again, Sami?

More follow-up on a story from yesterday now, with the Mirror suggesting that Arsenal may be back in for Sami Khedira. Mikel Arteta's injury has focused attention on the Gunners' deep midfield position. But just as important may be the fact that Real Madrid have apparently put the German World Cup winner up for sale -- and at a cut-rate price of just 12 million pounds. If Arsenal can persuade him to lower his wage demands of 200,000 pounds a week, this one might yet fly.

Weren't we here yesterday?

Déjà vu? Kind of. We start again with Mario Balotelli's mooted move to Liverpool, but it seems a little closer down the line now and, with AC Milan having tweeted his departure, the smart money is on the Italian front man ending up on Merseyside. However! With yesterday's blog having outlined how the San Siro club were not keen on a 'good behaviour' (read" 'quick return') clause being inserted in Balotelli's contract for what was then thought to be a loan deal.

Friday's Times says that Brendan Rodgers and company have upped the ante somewhat themselves. A five-year deal is thought to have been offered, but there's a caveat: Liverpool want it to include certain standards of conduct to which he must adhere. That's more important than coming to an accord on personal terms, apparently, although it still seems pretty certain that the deal will go through. Balotelli has scored 30 goals in 54 games for AC Milan and has only just turned 24: this could yet be a masterstroke, you know.

ESPN FC's La Liga expert, Sid Lowe, discusses the ongoing player personnel changes at Real Madrid, including Angel Di Maria's desire to depart.

From Mario to (Di) Maria...

The Sun's back page utters a similar refrain, but we'll turn our attentions to the story at the top. It says that Manchester United are still fighting tooth and nail for Angel Di Maria, rated at 50 million pounds. Louis van Gaal seems intent on making the Real Madrid midfielder a flagship signing to both bolster the squad and give encouragement to a fanbase that was jolted by Saturday's defeat to Swansea. Laurent Blanc seemed to open the door earlier, with the PSG manager admitting that it would be "difficult" to sign a player his club has long since chased. So there may just be some encouragement for United in their pursuit of the Argentinian.

City sales?

A few stories are starting to segue pleasingly from one day to the next as the transfer deadline nears. Yesterday we saw that Roma were keen on Stevan Jovetic, with the Montenegrin forward preferring to remain at Manchester City, and now another Mirror story reveals that Juventus have a strong interest in bringing the ex-Fiorentina star back to Italy. Not for sale, say City. Although a price tag of 20 million pounds is mentioned in the article's next breath, so we'll reserve judgement on that. An extra five million pounds would apparently get you Alvaro Negredo, with Valencia showing an interest and the Spanish striker -- whose spell in England began so explosively -- apparently surplus to requirements.

Cech-ing out?

Another potential exit from the Premier League now, and things have unraveled rather quickly for Petr Cech since he was left on the bench for Chelsea's win over Burnley on Monday night. Thibaut Courtois took his place in goal and seems set to keep the jersey. The Mail now say that PSG and Monaco are both up for taking Cech on loan. With Chelsea still needing to cull a foreign player from their Premier League squad, Jose Mourinho might let it happen.

Anderson on his way...

And one more on the way out -- although perhaps a slightly more predictable name. Anderson is on his way out of Manchester United, it seems, and could return to former club Porto on loan according to another Mail story. It would certainly seem to make sense for both parties, with the Brazilian a peripheral figure at Old Trafford for some time.

Chop's away!

We'll leave you with a done deal. Former Newcastle, Sunderland, Cardiff and Ipswich man Michael Chopra has been drafted by Kerala Blasters in the new Indian Super League, explains the Guardian -- and his manager will be ex-England goalkeeper David James.

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