Sportingo’s Mark Apostolou continues his guest-coverage of the Premier League transfer window.There’s also rumours that Sevilla’s Juande Ramos replacing Martin Jol – but it’s all newspaper talk. Portsmouth, Real Madrid, Sevilla, Juventus and Blackburn are also involved in the latest transfer news and gossip.
Sol Campbell, whose Portsmouth deal expires next summer, says “the clock is ticking” and it is in the club’s hands whether or not he stays (News of the World). This will lead to an inevitable string of rumours, which I am shamelessly adding too, I’m afraid. Would Spurs fans ever welcome their former hero back, especially given the unsteady defence they currently possess? Would Arsenal ever think of bringing back a player who, at 32, may be ready for one last hurrah?
Now back in the England fold, the Pompey move resurrected a career racked by lack of form and issues off the pitch which nearly brought Campbell’s career to a shuddering halt. Would fans of either side like to comment on whether they would welcome him with open arms or would rather use their hands to make rude gestures at the man-mountain?
Manchester City could make a move for Real Madrid‘s Spanish international Guti before the transfer window closes (Sunday Express). JosÃ© MarÃa GutiÃ©rrez, as he is less commonly known, was reportedly on the Spurs radar last week, but now this summer’s perennial transfer snatchers City are seeking to scupper another deal by persuading the midfield maestro to opt for Sven’s rejuvenated outfit over Martin Jol’s stuttering Tottenham.
Regardless of the 4-0 win over Derby, Spurs still lack something in their midfield, most notably on the left and at Â£5m, which is the price Bernd Schuster is after for the four-time La Liga winner. Both City and Spurs will be very keen to pick up 30-year-old Guti.
Tottenham representatives reportedly met Sevilla boss Juande Ramos in Spain on Friday (News of the World). There’s no smoke without fire, and whereas White Hart Lane hasn’t exactly been the happiest place this past ten days, I am sure a lot of this managerial speculation is just tabloid drivel designed to sell papers. For the record, though, Ramos is a veteran who coached many La Liga sides to moderate success before putting Sevilla on the map since his arrival in 2005. I am sure that, should the Tottenham board decide to relieve Jol of his duties, many names will be mentioned. But as I have said countless times before, they would be mad to remove the Dutchman any time soon.
Apparently there is a dressing room war brewing at White Hart Lane The Sunday Mirror says the British players believe they have been working too hard, with Jol even ordering a double training session on Wednesday following their home defeat to Everton the night before. However, some of the foreign contingent claim they have not worked hard enough or done enough fitness work because they have concentrated on ball work.
I am sure any unrest that may have been prevalent following the first two games of the season will have been dispelled, at least for the time being, following the 4-0 thrashing of Derby. Its odd, though, that the British players would be the ones complaining about too much training as we are generally led to believe that it is the foreign elements that dislike the exertions of heavy training workloads. Either way, this is simply another story that has come out from the tabloids to feed on the problems in one half of north London like a gaggle of greedy vultures.
Juventus have made a fresh approach to Arsenal for Gilberto Silva and Dunga has suggested that the former Gunners captain should consider a move away from the Emirates. The Brazilian boss said: “I think he is ready for an experience in Italian football and for Juventus.” (tribalfootball.com). Quite why the ex-World Cup winner is stirring the situation is beyond me. Gilberto has been on top form of late, and was one of the players of the season last term. The adoration he receives on top of the breed of talent emerging in the red half of North London should be enough to steer him away from a move to Serie A.
Roy Keane is not happy – that is something Sunderland players will have found to their cost after their side’s capitulation at the hands of mighty Wigan. The Black Cats boss issued a warning to established stars who he had stuck with, such as his former Manchester United team-mate Dwight Yorke, who was replaced at half-time. Keane barked: “There is a fine line between loyalty and stupidity. I have been stupid. It won’t happen again.”
One can only imagine what kind of barracking he gave his failing players after the 3-0 loss at the JJB. I am sure it would have been a sight Sir Alex would have been proud of. The former United hard-man doesn’t hold any prisoners and his fresh, no-nonsense managerial approach is something that will hold his side in good stead and surely stir them on to better things in the coming weeks.
Blackburn Rovers winger Morten Gamst Pedersen insists he hasn’t been unsettled by talk of interest from today’s opponents Arsenal. However, he is apparently not shying away from the attention! The Norwegian ace said: “It’s flattering when people like the big four clubs like what you are doing.” (various). Sorry, but that kind of quote doesn’t exactly make me feel that anything other than a move away from Ewood Park is likely.