Transfer Rumors (7 Jun 09): Manchester United and Real Madrid fight for Wigan’s Valencia, Liverpool look for cut-price Crouch return, Tottenham target Van Nistelrooy, and more

We’re into a new week, and this is a week that could get off to a big bang in the transfers world. AC Milan star Kaka could very well make the switch to Real Madrid in the coming days, and a few other top European clubs could nail down a few new squad additions sometime this week as well.

Who’s coming close to making deals happen? Find out here, and don’t forget to check out the summer transfer lists, which will be updated shortly.


Manchester United To Move For Wigan’s Valencia

Manchester United and Real Madrid have both made bids in excess of £16m for Wigan winger Antonio Valencia (Sky Sports), but United could very well have the edge for the Ecuadorian star. (The Mirror)

Analysis: There are reports that United could be balking at the price for Valencia due to his performances over the second half of the season, but I think he’ll still end up at United.

Liverpool To Bring Back Crouchy?

Liverpool could attempt to take advantage of the fact that Portsmouth still owe them for their purchase of Peter Crouch by attempting to re-sign their former striker for only £4m. (The Mirror)

Analysis: Portsmouth don’t have the need to sell Crouch or Glen Johnson now, but even if they do consider selling Crouch, it won’t be to Liverpool for that price. Besides, I can’t say I see Crouch considering a return to Liverpool if he was going to be in the same role that he was in before.

Arsenal Set To Land Vermaelen, Ozil Next?

Arsenal are edging ever closer to a deal for Ajax defender Thomas Vermaelen, but at the same time, they could be set to lose Kolo Toure, who Manchester City could make a move for in the near future. (The Mirror)

Another serious target for Arsenal is Werder Bremen star Mesut Ozil, who the club are in serious talks for, according to Tribal Football.

Analysis: I’m not expecting both Toure and William Gallas to be at Arsenal next season, and Toure’s the one that they’d get a lot more money for.

Ozil had a fantastic season for Werder Bremen, with four goals and 15 assists in all competitions, and at 20, he’s only going to get better, and his time will come for a move to a club like Arsenal. But after Werder sold Diego to Juventus, Ozil is set to play even more of a pivotal role next season, and I don’t see him being sold just yet.

Manchester City To Open Eto’o Talks

Manchester City have had a bid of £20m for Samuel Eto’o rejected, but they have been given the green light to open talks for the Barcelona striker. (The Mirror)

Analysis: They may have come up short in their initial bid, but in the end, meeting Barcelona’s valuation for Eto’o won’t be a problem for City.

Tottenham Target Van Nistelrooy

Real Madrid could be set to allow striker Ruud van Nistelrooy for only £1.25m, and that could see Tottenham make a move for the former Manchester United star. (Daily Mail)

Analysis: Van Nistelrooy may be getting up in years and coming off of a serious injury, but 1.25m is a price that you just can’t pass up. Even if Harry Redknapp didn’t use him as a starter every time out, he can be counted on to find the net on a regular basis.

Sunderland Bid For Middlesbrough’s Downing

Sunderland are set to launch a £15m bid for Middlesbrough star Stewart Downing. (The Mirror)

Analysis: That certainly meets Middlesbrough’s valuation for Downing, and neither Tottenham nor Liverpool may attempt to match that amount, but any deal would likely hinge on whether or not Sunderland can sway Downing with their ambitions for the future.

Hull Agree Fee For Campbell

Hull have a bid of £6m accepted by Manchester United for striker Fraizer Campbell. Campbell, who spent last season on loan at Tottenham as part of United’s deal for Dimitar Berbatov, was a star of Hull’s promotion push in the 2007/08 season, scoring 15 goals. (Sky Sports)

Analysis: That’s actually a £1m less than what Hull bid for Campbell last summer, but at that time, he seemed to have more of a future at United than he does now, and they also ended up needing him as a makeweight for the Berbatov deal. He certainly would’ve been of a lot more use to Hull last season than he was to Tottenham, where he scored only three goals.

Birmingham Move For Central Defenders

Birmingham have made a fresh bid of £5m for Cardiff center back Roger Johnson, and the newly-promoted Blues are in the hunt for two other center backs. They’re in the hunt for American defender Oguchi Onyewu, who’s soon to be out of contract at Standard Liege, and Ecuadorian defender Giovanny Espinoza (Daily Mail). Reports that a deal is done for Onyewu are a bit premature, according to his agent (, but a deal is said to be close for Espinoza.

Analysis: Birmingham had the best defensive record in the goal-friendly Championship last season, allowing only 37 goals in 46 matches, but it’s always necessary to add significant depth and quality if you want to stay in the Premier League for more than one season.


Atletico Madrid After Everton’s Pienaar

Atletico Madrid are tracking Everton midfielder Steven Pienaar. Pienaar hasn’t been offered a long-term deal at the club, and Atletico think they can capitalize on that fact by making a move for the South African. (Daily Mail)

Analysis: Everton have recently wrapped up Tim Howard, Phil Jagielka, and Joseph Yobo to new deals, so Pienaar may not be too far behind. David Moyes isn’t looking to let any key players either, so I don’t see him leaving Goodison Park right now.

Espanyol Chase Premier League Duo

Espanyol are looking to make moves for two Premier League starlets. Chelsea striker Ben Sahar could be snapped up for £800k, and Tottenham attacker Giovani dos Santos is also on their wishlist. (Daily Mail)

Analysis: Neither player has a future at their current club, but they could quickly be key players for Espanyol next season. Espanyol scored 21 of their 46 league goals over the last 10 matches of the season, when they went 8-1-1 to go from relegation threat to 10th place, but for the season, their leading scorer had only six goals, so it’s obvious that addressing the attack is a priority.


Inter Bid For Arsenal’s Van Persie

Inter Milan are getting set to make a bid of £25m for Arsenal forward Robin van Persie. (The Mirror)

Analysis: One Arsenal forward could be on his way to Milan this summer, but it won’t be RVP.

Owen Interests Roma

Roma are interested in a move for Michael Owen, with his contract at Newcastle coming to an end at the end of June. (The Mirror)

Analysis: I don’t see Owen going abroad again at this point, unless the offer is just that attractive.

Forlan to AC Milan?

AC Milan have emerged as a potential suitor for Atletico Madrid striker Diego Forlan. (Tribal Football)

Analysis: It wouldn’t hurt AC Milan to go for a little more youth in their ranks, but Forlan is coming off of the best season of his career, and he’d be a great investment with some of the money they receive from Kaka’s impending move to Real Madrid. Forlan’s gotten used to playing in the Champions League, and Atletico Madrid will only be playing Europa League football next season, so AC Milan could be worth considering.

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