Transfer Rumors (1 August 08): Spurs close on Russian striker, Portsmouth line up Muntari replacement, Silva set for Roma?, and more

Well, we’ve not only quickly gone through yet another week, but can you believe it’s August already? That means that we’re inside the last month of the summer transfer window, and with that said, quite a lot of deals are getting done, and a lot of money is being spent.

Who’s doing the spending, and who are they spending it on? Well, you’ll find out… right now.


After sealing a deal for David Bentley, Tottenham are reportedly closing in on a deal for Andrei Arshavin, and according to the Mirror, Spurs could be set for a £15m deal for striker Roman Pavlyuchenko.

Rumor Rating: 5 – They were linked with Pavlyuchenko earlier in the summer, but it didn’t look like much would come from it. However, with the sale of Robbie Keane, Tottenham needed to nab a new striker, even with Darren Bent having an excellent preseason.

Tottenham are set to sign Derby keeper Stephen Bywater as cover for big summer signing Heurelho Gomes.

Rumor Rating: 5 – After letting Radek Cerny go to QPR and selling Paul Robinson to Blackburn, Juande Ramos needed to get a solid backup for his new £10m man. Could he be counted on in case Gomes goes down for an extended injury spell? Maybe, but that may not be something that Spurs supporters want to think about.

Blackburn and Fulham are fighting it out for Australian midfielder Vince Grella. Grella, who plays for Torino, has reportedly been the subject of a £3.5m offer from Blackburn, which could be enough to secure the former Parma man.

Rumor Rating: 5 –

Portsmouth are interested in Lokomotiv Moscow midfielder Diniyar Bilyaletdinov (that’s a breath and a half) as a potential replacement for the recently departed Sulley Muntari.

Rumor Rating: 3 – The 23-year old Bilyaletdinov has spent his entire career at Lokomotiv, and he represented Russia at Euro 2008. With him being a key member of their push for the Russian league title/a Champions League place, and the joint top scorer in the league, Lokomotiv might be reluctant to sell, but money talks.

Ipswich have made a £5m offer for Portsmouth striker David Nugent.

Rumor Rating: 5 – No reason for Portsmouth not to accept this offer, both because it’ll give them additional money for summer moves, and it’ll also allow Nugent to revive a promising career that took a big step back last season.

Bristol City made U-turns on both Emad Moteab and Michael Mifsud, but it looks like they’ve finally settled on a new striker: it’s Crewe hot-shot Nicky Maynard, and it’s for a club-record £2.25m. The 21-year old Maynard scored 15 goals for the League One side last season, with 11 of those goals coming in his last nine appearances.

Rumor Rating: 5 – This is a great signing for Bristol City for both the present and the future. Maynard has proven himself as a scorer in the lower leagues, but now he has the chance to help the Robins make a run at Premier League promotion.

QPR have signed Real Madrid starlet Daniel Parejo on a two-year long loan. Even though it’s a two-year deal, Real Madrid could recall him next summer if they want.

Rumor Rating: 5 – It’s an impressive coup for QPR, who are doing their best to position themselves for a run in the always wide-open Championship.


Deportivo La Coruna haven’t budged yet when it comes to Newcastle’s interest in Fabricio Coloccini, but an encouraging sign for Kevin Keegan is the fact that they’re already trying to sign a replacement for Coloccini in Diego Colotto, who plays for Mexican side Atlas.

Rumor Rating: 5 – The sooner that they bring in Colotto, the better it is for Newcastle, as they would no doubt like to get the Coloccini deal done before the Premier League season starts.


According to reports, Valencia’s David Silva is set to move to Roma for €25m. The source comes from comments made by Juan Villalonga, a prospective buyer of Valencia, and is already being disputed, so don’t read much into it just yet.

Rumor Rating: 3 – Roma haven’t really made a big splash in the transfer market as of yet, but this would definitely be it. After selling Mancini, they need to add a new attacking presence, though Silva doesn’t, at least as of yet, have the same scoring punch that Mancini does.

With Marco Materazzi going down with an injury this week, Inter have quickly picked up a little defensive help in Matteo Ferrari, who was recently released by Roma.

Rumor Rating: 5 – It’s about the best signing they could make without having to pay any sort of transfer fee. Materazzi is out for a month, so Ferrari should get a chance to get his feet wet at the start of the Serie A season.

Udinese have signed Nigerian striker Odion Ighalo from Norwegian side Lyn (remember them?) for €3m.

Rumor Rating: 5 – As it happens, there’s a bit of controversy about the situation, just as there was with his compatriot by the name of Mikel. Apparently, Ighalo had made an agreement with Lyn’s league foes SK Brann, then turned around and signed with Udinese.

Newly-promoted Lecce have signed Palermo midfielder Fabio Casserta. Casserta has signed a three-year deal with the club, leaving Palermo after only a season.

Rumor Rating: 5 – Lecce could also splash a little more cash in the coming days by signing Pisa’s Jose Ignacio Castillo for €1.5m.


Marseille playmaker Mathieu Valbuena has turned down the chance to be Andrei Arshavin’s replacement at Zenit St. Petersburg, despite the offer of a big-money contract.

Rumor Rating: 2 – The 23-year old Valbuena scored goals like this and this last season, so it’s no wonder that Zenit reportedly offered nearly €18m for him.


PSV are in hot pursuit of Standard Liege striker Milan Jovanovic. The 27-year-old Serbian international is the reigning Belgian Footballer of the Year after leading Standard to the league title.

Rumor Rating: 5 – PSV have offered €5m plus midfielder Eric Addo, but they’re going to have to up their offer to meet Standard’s €7m valuation of Jovanovic.


Rangers have signed Charlton defender Madjid Bougherra for £2.5m. It looked like Bougherra was bound for West Brom, but in the end, the Algerian international is headed for the SPL and European football.

Rumor Rating: 5 – Ultimately, Charlton took the better offer, as Watford offered only £2m.


AEK Athens have signed veteran midfielder and Greece national team captain Angelos Basinas on a free transfer. The 32-year old, who formerly played for Mallorca, was on his way to Olympiakos, but that fell through, thanks in no small part to the club’s fans protesting to the signing of a former Panathinaikos star.

Rumor Rating: 5 – You know you hate another club when you push for your club to shy away from signing them, even when they could be an asset for your club, and as it could happen, Basinas could help push AEK past Olympiakos in the Greek top flight.

Well, if you’ve read all the way to the bottom, we’re finally through the day in transfer news and rumors.

As you know (if you’re a regular reader), I’ll be here through the weekend providing you with all of the latest transfer tidbits, but until I return tomorrow, you can chime in with your thoughts on today’s bits, chip in with ones that you’ve read and heard, and hey, don’t forget to check out the (still being) updated summer transfer lists.

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  1. Morgan (Arsenal fan) 1 August, 2008
  2. abinand 1 August, 2008
  3. john 1 August, 2008
  4. Eddie Griffin 1 August, 2008
  5. ardi 2 August, 2008
  6. john 2 August, 2008