Sportingo’s Mark Apostolou continues his guest coverage of the Premier League transfer window. Today’s transfer rumour mill also has Manchester United’s Silvestre rejecting Newcastle because of Joey Barton, Portsmouth’s Nugent rubbishing Derby and West Brom resigned to losing Davies to Aston Villa or Tottenham and other news and gossip.
More good news for Spurs fans still licking their wounds after their last-minute loss at the Stadium of Light was compounded by Arsenalâ€™s late success against Fulham â€“ it appears that Fiorentina signing Christian Vieri turned down a move to White Hart Lane in the summer (Corriere della Sera). The 33-year-old Italian striker said: “I tried to find an ambitious team â€“ and I found one in Fiorentina. Tottenham and Manchester City had contacted me, but when I was called by Fiorentina, I quickly said ‘yes’.”
Actually I think this is genuinely a cause for jubilation at Tottenham. Serie A legend Vieri has made a living out of a series of big wage-demanding moves since his heyday at Inter, Lazio and Juventus. For the past two years he has been rocked by injury and a serious loss of form. Quite what role he would have played at Spurs, given they are striker-heavy at present, is beyond me. And for the record, Manchester City also got off lightly by not signing him.
Arsenal have made a shock Â£7m offer for Blackburn Rovers winger Morten Gamst Pedersen (The People). Apparently any deal would have to include a player swap. Mark Hughes sees Gunners striker Nicklas Bendtner and midfielder Mathieu Flamini as potential make-weights but would still demand a cash sum on top.
Pedersen seems to be the style of player that would attract Arsene Wenger â€“ OK, heâ€™s not French and not a teenager, but he is right up his street. The 25-year-old Norwegian has been a model of consistency during his three-year stint at Rovers and has been courted by a number of Premier League sides, most notably Liverpool. Watch this space.
Another Arsenal target is Caen forward Yoan Gouffran. The Gunners had him watched in his past two matches (The Times). Now, he IS French AND only 21! Expect the contractâ€™s already on its way to Normandy!
Barcelona striker Eidur Gudjohnsen wants Â£100,000 a week from any of the Premier League clubs â€“ West Ham, Middlesbrough, Blackburn â€“ chasing him (Daily Mirror). The Icelandic international may have to adjust his demands as any potential suitor is sure to baulk at such a figure â€“ mind you, if Man United are a striker short due to Wayne Rooneyâ€™s injury, maybe Sir Alex might approach the Glazers for more readies.
It may be time for some random dope testing at the JJB after Paul Scharner made a series of somewhat deluded predictions (tribalfootball.com). The no-nonsense Austrian defender/midfielder thinks Wigan Athletic could qualify for Europe. He says: “Wigan are flirting with the idea of winning a place in one of the European competitions this season.â€ They can flirt all they want but, let’s face it, any notion of a top-six finish is faintly ludicrous for the Latics.
Scharner goes on: “Liverpool have made the best summer signings, and they are a club I’d be very interested in joining.” I’d be very interested in joining Rafaâ€™s side as well, but me and the lanky dreamer had better just dream on.
Manchester United defender Mikael Silvestre says he rejected a move to Newcastle because of the presence of Joey Barton, who is up on an assault charge after an incident with his old Man City team-mate, Ousmane Dabo. Silvestre tells tribalfootball.com: “It was a good contract and a fine opportunity, but money is not the only thing in life. I could not sign for Newcastle out of respect for Ousmane.” Good to see Silvestre sticking by his former France team-mate.
Reading striker Dave Kitson rowed with Sky pundit Ruud Gullit in the Old Trafford tunnel after his 37-second red card against Manchester United for an over-zealous lunge at Patrice Evra.
Aston Villa and Spurs target Curtis Davies has been left out in the cold at West Brom. Baggies boss Tony Mowbray said: “He was not selected and didn’t travel.” The chances of the highly-rated defender being at the Hawthorns past August are now practically nil.
David Nugent says he turned down Derby this summer because he regards Portsmouth as a bigger club (tribalfootball.com). He probably should have added that Portsmouth arenâ€™t as big as Everton, a side he clearly had set his hopes on joining.