by Steven S
It seems the closer we get to the start of a new season the less real news is generated in a surprisingly slow summer for transfers. With just short of four weeks until the end of the current transfer window, the two best teams in the country have been almost reluctant to dip into the market, Shinji Kagawa the only eye catching new recruit of the two clubs so far. In fact the biggest deal from the two clubs arrived this week with the Red Devils announcing a sponsorship deal worth £357million with GM Motors to display Chevrolet on their shirts from 2013 for seven years.
The RVP transfer continues to drag its heels as Arsenal have become involved in another drawn out transfer, this time painstakingly bringing attacking midfielder Santi Cazorla across on the slow boat from Malaga. ‘Insiders’ tell us that he has had a medical and been introduced to his new team mates, with the hold up now coming from the Spanish clubs current financial mess. The purchase would push Arsenal past the £40m spending mark this summer which has been somewhat overshadowed by the Van Persie saga. Nuri Sahin is also tipped to join the club on a year long loan from Real Madrid following a season stuck on the bench notching up only ten appearances. The Turkish international has the backing of manager Jose Mourinho to seek first team football elsewhere and the Gunners seem ahead of anyone else in securing the deal. Arsene Wenger also confirmed the fringe squad players Bendtner, Squillaci and Park will be allowed to leave the club.
Wigan moved back into the market to scoop Ivan Ramis from Real Mallorca after reports earlier in the week suggested the defender was on his way to West Ham. Both clubs will face a long hard journey for survival over the next 9 months and Wigan surely cannot continue to scrape out of trouble in the last weeks once again. Roberto Martinez was a man in demand earlier in the summer and whilst his commitment to the club should not be called into question, the lack of firepower in his squad will come back to haunt them.
Garth Bale and Charlie Adams swung their handbags around in America, Liverpool and Tottenham coming across each others paths on their respective US tours. Bale was forced out of the game following a fairly sharp tackle from Adams, encouraging Garth’s teammates to accuse the lardy Scotsmen of recklessness, and not for the first time. The reputation developed at Blackpool for being something of an incisive passer and important goalscorer diminished amongst the banality of Liverpool’s midfield last season, so he may be in danger of falling down the packing order if he does not return to his form of old.
One time first teamer at Everton Joseph Yobo is close to a move with Fenerbahce, the club confirming they are in discussions with the Turkish side. Steven Pienaar has re-joined Everton on a four-year contract after a £4.5million deal was agreed with Tottenham Hotspur, as Tim Chahill finalised his move to the New York Red Bulls, leaving the door open for a Landon Donovan type loan move during the MLS off season. James Collins left Aston Villa to join the East London clarets West Ham, which was quickly followed by the announcement of Feyenoord’s defender Ron Vlaar filling the Collins sized hole left in the squad. Bilel Mohsni has been with the Hammers trialling in a couple of friendly games, although Southend have rejected a bid for the centre back that can also play centre forward.
Alberto Aquilani’s time at Liverpool has come to an end, signing a three year deal with Fiorentina. The Italian came to the country with a reputation as a classy passing central midfielder, although the large price tag surprised many concerned about his injury record. Given the philosophy of their new manager, it is surprising that he has been allowed to leave as he could’ve have become a key component of Liverpool’s new approach. Daniel Agger meanwhile has been the subject of two bids from Manchester City, both of which were dismissed and may be increased over the next week or so.
Any hope Kevin de Bruyne had of pushing for first team football at Chelsea this season was once again delayed, Werder Bremen taking the wide man on loan for a season. There will be more additions to the Chelsea side before the end of August and the Belgian may find it hard to ever really make something of himself in the Premiership. We end on a positive note this week with news that Villa club captain Stiliyan Petrov is now in remission as he continues to overcome his fight against acute leukaemia. With many months still to go before he can really begin to plan ahead, we can only hope that the 33 year old has enough time on the clock to get back onto the pitch before retirement. In a week where Fabrice Muamba revealed he has been playing in a laidback team sessions we have to believe that anything is possible.
Next weekend brings the curtain raiser to the 2012/13 season, Manchester City squaring up to a new look Chelsea side looking to build on their Champions League winning status. In the mean time the Olympics has provided a valuable distraction to the prima donna world of footballers, reminding us all of the long hard hours of work so many athletes across the world put into their respective disciplines, where financing their careers is as much as an achievement as a huge pay cheque. The astronomical amounts put into running these championships almost seems worth it now, the British public have made this one of the warmest Olympics I can remember. More of the same next week, so enjoy the athletics until then peeps.