On The Eve of the Transfer Deadline

Dimitar Berbatov and Rio Ferdinand

Berba’s London Bound!

The 2012/13 Barclays Premier League season is two weeks old, however, the transfer window remains open for another thirty-one hours. However you feel about the window remaining open for a fortnight after the season gets underway, the fact remains that it does and, as such, all twenty Premier League clubs have a chance to strengthen their squads for the first half of the campaign. They do so now with the benefit of having had the chance, not only to see how their own side has coped with its first couple of competitive fixtures but also, how the other sides have stacked up in comparison. With plenty of activity anticipated over the course of the next day and a bit, this article takes a look at some of the potential arrivals and departures that may occur before the window slams shut at 11pm on Friday 31st August.

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini is desperate to bolster his squad for another Premier League and Champions’ League assault. City have only signed Jack Rodwell from Everton so far (£12m rising to £15), whilst they’ve let Vladmir Weiss, Wayne Bridge (loan), Adam Johnson and Manu Adebayor go. Mancini is looking to offload Nigel de Jong and Yaya Toure too, while Edin Dzeko, Savic and Roque Santa Cruz have all been linked with moves away from Eastlands. City have today, reportedly, had a bid for Scott Sinclair accepted by Swansea (£6.2m + add-ons) and are closing in on defender Matija Nastasic from Fiorentina (£12m). 34 year old goalkeeper Richard Wright has signed as cover for Joe Hart whilst the Citizens have been linked with Maicon from Inter Milan (£4m). It promises to be a busy Friday for Mancini et al.

Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson ruled out any more transfer activity before the window closes. United have already brought in Shinji Kagawa (£20m), Robin van Persie (£24m), Nick Powell and Alex Buttner to add to their ranks and have let Dimitar Berbatov go to Fulham (£4m).

Tottenham finally sold Luka Modric to Real Madrid a few days ago (£29.3m + add-ons) and have set about replacing him by bringing in Moussa Dembele from Fulham (£15m). He joins Gylfi Sigurdsson (£8m), Jan Vertonghen(£5m) and Adebayor(£5m). Along with Modric, Kranjcar, Nelsen, Bassong and Pienaar have gone to Dynamo Kiev, QPR, Norwich and Everton respectively, with van der Vaart likely to be leaving too. Loic Remy will not be joining the club, however a deal for Moutinho is believed to be on the cards, with Willian still a target and goalkeeper Hugo Lloris too.

Liverpool are expected to do a lot of late business, both buying and selling. Charlie Adam and  Jay Spearing look destined to leave Anfield, Bolton seems the likely destination for Spearing  (1yr loan) with plenty of clubs rumoured to be chasing Adam (£4-5m). Joe Cole is another set for the exit door, however, his current injury is making shifting him a little more problematic.

Andy Carroll has been told he will be a cover player for the Reds and may well be offloaded (£15m), with Newcastle or West Ham the touted destinations for the big striker. Clint Dempsey could finally make his long awaited move to the North West from Fulham (£7m) and, should Carroll be moved on, LFC may bid for Theo Walcott (15m). The Reds reportedly have other targets in mind should Walcott remain at Arsenal, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from St Etienne is said to be one (£6.5m) and, according to reports in Germany, Liverpool are close to agreeing a deal for 18 year old Leverkusen striker Samed Yesil (£1m). It certainly promises to be a frantic Friday at Anfield tomorrow.

Chelsea have seen seven out so far, including Bosingwa, Drogba and Kalou, whilst welcoming at least six more in the shape of the Hazard brothers, Moses, Oscar, Azpilicueta and Marin. Schurrle remains a target for di Matteo, who also harbours an interest in Robert Lewandowski, while Daniel Sturridge is linked with a move away, however, whether any more business is actually done remains to be seen.

Everton have strengthened wisely this window. Stephen Pienaar has arrived from Spurs (£4.5), as has Kevin Mirallas from Olympiacos (£6m) and Stephen Naismith from Rangers. Rodwell has left for City, with Tim Cahill moving to the New York Red Bulls and Joseph Yobo to Fenerbahce. The one bit of business that may still be done for the Toffees is the signing of Brian Oviedo from Copenhagen (£5m), with a bid likely to be made today by the Merseyside club.

Southampton have made several signings as they attempt to stay in the Premier League this season. Jay Rodriguez has come in from Burnley (£7m), Nathaniel Clyne from Crystal Palace, Stephen Davis from Rangers and Manu Mayuka from Young Boys, with Lee Barnard and Lee Holmes being moved on. Gaston Ramirez may well join the Saints on deadline day, with Nigel Adkins also believed to be interested in signing Matt Phillips of Blackpool.

Newcastle have had a relatively quiet window bringing in just three so far, Vurnon Anita, Curtis Good and Gael Bigirimana. Six have left incuding Leon Best, Peter Lovendkrands and Danny Guthrie, which will leave the Geordies bereft of strikers come the African Cup of Nations. Expect a deadline day move for a forward, very likely Andy Carroll (£15m), with Loic Remy also a possibility (£15m). Matthieu Debuchy is a long term target and a deal may be finalised for him before the deadline.

Arsenal began their transfer dealings early and it looked like snapping up Podolski (£12m) and Giroud would set them up nicely for the season. Since then they’ve added Cazorla (£15m) from Malaga, however, losing Robin van Persie to United (£24m), Alex Song to Barca (£15m) and losing out to Liverpool over Nuri Sahin will hit the Gunners hard, despite the money the sales of the first two generated.

Wenger has been heavily linked with a move for Jesus Navas (£18m), however his personality makes it very unlikely that he’ll leave Sevilla. Yann M’Vila has been linked with a move to the Gunners all summer and, in the wake of Song’s departure, a deal may be struck to take the French international to the Emirates. Don’t rule out a couple of under the radar moves from Wenger either as he seeks to strengthen before the 11pm deadline.

USA - Honduras 6

Dempsey Can’t Make Peace with Jol. U.S. Forward Liverpool Bound?

Sunderland have already added Adam Johnson (£12m), Stephen Fletcher (£15m), Louis Saha and Carlos Cuellar, whilst Stephane Sessegnon has signed a new deal. Michael Dawson has been heavily linked, however, Younes Kaboul’s injury makes a move away from White Hart Lane unlikely for the defender. O’Neill is keen on Clint Dempsey but, chances are, the American will seal a move to Liverpool on deadline day. Peter Odemwengie is still a reported target for the Black Cats so don’t be surprised by a little more wheeling and dealing at the Stadium of Light, however, don’t expect anything major.

Fulham have seen Danny Murphy, Dickson Etuhu, Andy Johnson and Moussa Dembele leave already this summer, with only Martin Petric and Hugo Rodallega joining on free transfers. As mentioned above, Clint Dempsey will leave Craven Cottage before the deadline, with Liverpool his likely destination. Martin Jol pulled off something of a coup in the last 24 hours with the capture of Dimitar Berbatov from under the noses of Fiorentina and Juventus and, when Dempsey goes, we can expect to see the London club go into the market again with Gomis (£6.5m) and Kieran Richardson (£2m) both targets for their Dutch manager.

Queen Park Rangers have been the window’s busiest club, bringing in nine new players and letting ten go already. The likes of Julio Cesar, Junior Hoilett and Samba Diakite have been brought in to bolster the ranks at Loftus Road, whilst players such as Heidar Helguson and Joey Barton have been shipped out, as Mark Hughes and Tony Fernandes set about a total revolution of the playing staff. Expect to see plenty more action from the London club too. Granero is a target and QPR are believed to be in negotiations with Real Madrid over him and Ricardo Carvalho. Plenty of action still to unfold at Loftus Road before this window closes.

Stoke City have brought two in, Geoff Cameron and Michael Kightly, and allowed four to leave including Ricardo Fuller and Jonathan Woodgate. Tony Pulis is fairly wily in the transfer market and we can expect him to add to the squad with a few cut price deals. Maurice Edu will join from Rangers and the Potters have tabled a formal bid for Charlie Adam (£4-5m), which could see the Scot playing at the Britannia. Unlikely as it may sound, Michael Owen may also be turning out in the red and white stripes this year, as the former England star desperately seeks a Premier League club for which to sign. We’ll just have to wait and see on that one.

Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert has added five new players so far, whilst only letting James Collins leave (£2.5m). Vlaar, El Ahmadi, Brad Guzan, Matthew Lowton and Joe Bennett have all come in as Lambert attempts to re-build Villa’s dilapidated squad. More movement is expected at Villa park; Lambert is interested in Genk striker Christian Benteke, although a bid of £5.5m has been turned down, an improved offer is likely to be made. Chesterfield striker Jordan Bowery is also a target for the Birmingham side and the deal is likely to be wrapped up presently (£500K).

Andy Carroll signs his Speciali 3 football boots

Who Will Andy Carroll Sign For Next?

Norwich City have added seven already including Sebastien Bassong, Michael Turner and Robert Snodgrass, Mark Bunn and Rennes midfielder Alex Tettey, but last week’s draw with QPR displayed the Canaries’ inability to take chances so expect to see them targeting a striker. A bid has reportedly been made for Brighton striker Craig Mackail Smith, with the Canaries hoping the lure of the Premier League will be enough to persuade the Scottish international to move to Norfolk.

West Ham have made plenty of moves already, as you might expect with “Big” Sam Allardyce at the helm. At least seven players have come in, including Jarvis, Diame, Jaaskeleinan and Maiga with only two having left. The big one though, which may still happen, is landing Andy Carroll from Liverpool on a one year loan with a guaranteed permanent move at the end of the loan period (£19m altogether). Allardyce is very keen on Carroll having managed him at Newcastle and, although the striker initially rejected a move to Upton Park, he may reconsider as the window draws to a close. Joe Cole, Royston Drenthe and Peter Odemwengie have also been linked with moves to the Hammers.

West Bromwich Albion boss Steve Clarke has added over six players to his squad including Romelu Lukaku (1 yr loan) and Markus Rosenberg, whilst letting four go, including Simon Cox and Nickey Shorey. Clarke would appear to have done his dealings early and it’s unlikely that he will be making any further additions, although, the Baggies have been linked with Brian Oviedo.

Wigan Athletic boss Roberto Martinez sets about another season having been forced to sell his star player from last term. Victor Moses joined the ranks of ex Wigan stars such as, Antonio Valencia and Charles N’Zogbia as he left the DW to join Chelsea last weekend (£9m), however, his departure doesn’t seem to have affected his team mates. Connor Sammon, Hugo Rodallega, Diame and Kirkland have  also departed the Latics’ squad, whilst Ryo Myaichi (loan), Arouna Kone (£2.7m) and Ivan Ramis have all come in. Martinez often gets his players in on the q t so it will be interesting to see if he does make any further moves, although, the club have been linked with Bolton’s Lee Chung Yong.

Reading have added at least seven new players since gaining promotion, including Pogrebnyak, Garath McCleary, Chris Gunter and Danny Guthrie, while only two have been allowed to leave. Whilst Reading have played well in their opening two games, it is likely that they will need more fire power if they want to stay up. The loan signing of Jordan Obita from Portsmouth will add more pace going forward but it is goals that the Royals will lack and, as such, a striker is the order of the day. The most likely target is Carlton Cole of West Ham (£5m), with Reading heavily linked in recent days. Kieron Richardson, though not a striker, is also a target.

Swansea City have made an excellent start to the new campaign under Brian Laudrup and the new boss has already proved to be a big hit in the transfer market. Swansea have lost Joe Allen (£15m) and look set to lose Scott Sinclair (£6.2m + add-ons) but have brought in Michu (£2.5m), Ki Sung Yeung of Celtic (£6m) and are poised to sign Pablo Hernandez from Valencia (£5.5m). In the light of the Hernandez deal, Laudrup’s work may be done for this window, however, with the Swans linked to Tino Costa and Ashley Westwood, we can’t be certain of that just yet.

So that’s how things stand on the eve of the transfer deadline. Plenty of deals still to be done and It’s All In The Game will bring you a full round up of all the summer’s transfer activity in the Barclays Premier League once the window has well and truly closed.

Berbatov image Saadick Dhansay. Dempsey image by NathanF.

Andy Carroll image by UmbroFootball

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