Premier League Hot Gossip and Rumours: Arsenal, Liverpool, Tottenham, Manchester City, Portsmouth, Newcastle and more

Posted by’s Mark Apostolou brings daily coverage of the Premier League’s hot gossip. 

It started out as gossip but maybe the rumours are beginning to have a hint of truth about them. Could Kaka really be joining Arsenal (various)? It’s been reported by a number of sources that the 25-year-old Brazilian is keen to move on from AC Milan – and he’s not been shy in his glowing references to how great the Premier League is and specifically how he would love to play for Arsenal.

With new investment coming into the Emirates and with cash to burn, now would be a time to set a Gunners transfer record. Sure it would cost a king’s ransom but Kaka would be worth every penny. The 2002 World Cup winner will also be enticed by the fine form of Arsene Wenger’s men, especially in light of his side’s own faltering start to the Serie A season. Hands up all the Arsenal fans who want this move to happen!

Since the season began, many have been speculating that Rafa Benitez needs to invest in a defensive player or two and now it appears that Liverpool are about to make a move for Athletic Bilbao centre-back Fernando Amorebieta (various).

Reports from the Spanish press suggest Benitez will make a £7m move for the defender when the transfer window re-opens in January. Scouts have flown over from Liverpool to watch the Venezuelan-born player in action in recent La Liga matches.

Fernando is known as a bit of a bruiser who gets more than his fair share of attention from referees. However, he can play as a full-back as well as his customary centre-back role, so could be a handy player to add to the squad.

Apparently he is on the verge of an international call-up by Spain, even though he was born abroad and is already thought of highly by many in the Spanish game. He’s currently playing well in a struggling Bilbao side who are just outside the relegation zone. Benitez should act fast before one of the local big guns nabs him.

Martin Jol and Damien Comolli are both agreed on Tottenham’s next target -  they are lining up a £6m bid for versatile Lyon star Hatem Ben Arfa (various).

Arfa, 20, is seemingly more of a part of the French international set-up than under his new club manager Alain Perrin. He is unsettled at Lyon after losing his place in the starting 11 and has been linked with a January move away from the French giants.

He would be a handy player to have at White Hart Lane, not least because he can fulfil a number of roles from attacking midfielder to supporting striker and even as a front-man. Spurs need some more creative players to help provide their talented strike force with ammunition. They also need a defender or two.

I am sure that chairman Daniel Levy will be given a huge list of players that Jol would like to purchase, Lilywhite fans should just hope the Dutchman gets the cash he needs to help steer the team up the table.

High-flying Manchester City are looking to bolster their attack with some quality players – and two are linked very strongly with a move to Eastlands. According to The Sun, City boss Sven-Goran Eriksson is desperate to sign Newcastle’s England striker Michael Owen in the January transfer window and will offer about £15m.

The former England manager is also keen on Liverpool’s seemingly unwanted striker Peter Crouch (Daily Mirror) but Reds boss Rafa Benitez wants £12m for the beanpole forward and that could be a little more than City were planning to offer. Apparently Crouch’s former club Portsmouth are also keen to re-sign him (various).

Eriksson has done a wonderful job so far and needs a slightly bigger squad to keep pushing for a UEFA Cup or even a top-four place. Both Owen and Crouch would be fantastic signings, and now that the City giant has awoken, the proposition to join them will not be easy to turn down for either England international.

Owen can still do a good job in the Premier League and, injuries aside, he is still one of the best in the country. The question is, should the Blues risk spending such huge amounts of money on a player who seems destined to limp out of the game permanently any time soon?

If I were the Man City boss I would try to sign Owen on the cheap and get hold of Crouch as soon as possible. People forget just how effective the tall striker can be; last season he scored 18 goals in 30 starts and yet this term he has managed just 85 minutes of Premier League football.

Finally, we come to Nicklas Bendtner, who has given Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger an ultimatum – pick me or I’ll quit (The Sun). This has sparked the interest of  West Ham, who are after the talented Dane (various).

It’s hard when a top-quality player has to sit out on the bench simply because those in front of him in the queue are in superb form – namely Robin van Persie and Emmanuel Adebayor. It will be a tough decision for both Wenger and the player, but one they will have to make sooner rather than later.

Bendtner is young but also keen to get his career moving forwards. West Ham would be a good move for him as they are progressing well at present and he would at least be given a shot at first-team football. However, maybe a loan move would be the most sensible thing for all parties.

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