Thursday, 29 December 2011

The Ghost Town Gossip


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Arsenal to offer Henry a two-month deal, Chelsea close on Cahill, 'Arry likes Tevez and more splendid gossip...

ARSENAL OFFER HENRY DEAL
The big news in a few papers this morning is that Arsenal will offer Thierry Henry a deal at Arsenal.
The Daily Mail reports that Henry will be offered a two-month loan deal to stay at the club - where he has been training in the MLS off-season - as cover for Robin van Persie when Gervinho and Marouane Chamakh go to the Africa Cup of Nations.
The Mail claims: 'He could feature in seven Premier League games if he accepts the offer - as well as FA Cup ties and the first leg of Arsenal's Champions League last-16 clash against AC Milan. But it is the Premier League where Wenger's side need most help, with key games against Manchester United and Tottenham coming up.
'Henry has impressed with his sharpness, attitude and effect on the Arsenal squad. He has become increasingly in favour of a return to the club and was moved to tears when a statue of him was unveiled at the Emirates this month.'
The Daily Star backs up the story, while The Daily Telegraph reports that the two-month offer will not stop Arsene Wenger looking at both Mario Goetze and Lukas Podolski, the latter of whom Wenger believes can act 'as someone who can function in Gervinho's position to the left of a main striker and in the central role that is occupied by Van Persie'.
Finally, The Times reports that Arsenal's players have backed a move for Podolski, specifically Alex Song and Per Mertesacker.


CHELSEA CLOSING ON CAHILL
It looks like Gary Cahill's move to Chelsea could be wrapped up pretty quickly.
The paper claims Chelsea and Bolton have already agreed a £7million fee for the defender, and have been given permission to speak to Cahill about personal terms and whatnot.
The Mirror sagely and solemnly reports that Cahill 'is expected to say "yes" to the Stamford Bridge switch, although there are still details to be sorted out about the size and length of contract.'
Hmmm. A team heading for relegation or one still with a very outside chance of winning the title, but with an excellent chance of making the Champions League.
Tough call.


AVB STAYS WHATEVER
Interesting tale in The Sun, who report that whatever happens this season, Chelsea will not sack Andre Villas-Boas. Which is very nice.
Apparently Roman Abramovich has made it very clear that he will be sticking with his young manager even if Chelsea finish the season potless.
And not only that: 'But Red Rom has given Villas-Boas, 34, the all-clear to launch a major dressing-room shake-up in the summer. 
'Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba, Florent Malouda, John Obi Mikel and Salomon Kalou are all set to follow Nicolas Anelka and Alex out of the club.'


BERBA OFF TO BAYER?
Quick word from Bayer Leverkeusen, who have apparently confirmed that contact has been made with Manchester United for Dimitar Berbatov.
Berbatov of course played there before coming to England, and with his contract up in the summer, he may leave in January.
And The Sun quotes Bayer chief executive Wolfgang Holzhauser as saying: "I'd even say contact is friendly. But nothing is concrete."


'ARRY LIKES TEVEZ
If you're interested in what Harry Redknapp said when asked if he'd be keen on signing Carlos Tevez, then read on. If not, skip to the next bit.
Redknapp told SHOUTsport: "I like Tevez, he's a fantastic player. I couldn't see it happening, but I'd be a liar if I said I wouldn't take him if I had the chance.
"When he plays, he's top class. Whatever you say about him, when he players he has a real go and never plays without putting in all in."
In fact, it sounds like it's going to be a quiet January at the Lane: "I think we'll stay with what we've got. Unless you can buy a fantastic player, we aren't going to improve too much.
"I'd probably give myself a headache by bringing someone else in because I've got plenty of cover in most positions."


ARSENAL & CHELSEA IN FOR CUENCA?
Quick line in The Daily Mail, which we will reproduce in full here:
'Arsenal and Chelsea are monitoring contract developments between Barcelona and starlet striker Isaac Cuenca. 
'The 20-year-old has yet to agree new terms and is out of contract in the summer so is free to speak to other clubs in the New Year.'
Since Cuenca has only just made it into the Barca first team, we'd consider it particularly ballsy for him to demand too much from them in terms of a contract, but you know what these footballing types are like.


PAV SWAYED BY ANZHI
Absolutely superb quotes from Roman Pavlyuchenko's ever-entertaining agent.
About a potential move to moneybags Anzhi, Oleg Artemov said:
"At the beginning, Roman absolutely ignored Anzhi. He wasn't against going back to play in Russia, just not to the Makhachkala-based team.
"But Roman is tired of the uncertainty and the lack of match action."
He's presumably also tired of only earning something like £70,000-a-week, when he could be raking-in a billion pounds per second at Anzhi.


CARLO GOES TO PARIS
Looks like Carlo Ancelotti is going to be the new Paris-St Germain manager.
The papers report that David Beckham will follow him shortly after, while The Daily Mail reckons Chelsea defender Alex will be his first signing.
Plus: 'Ancelotti's move has also sparked speculation that Didier Drogba and Florent Malouda could follow Alex to Paris, while the 52-year-old has also been linked with moves for his old Milan stars Alexandre Pato and Kaka, who is now at Real Madrid.'


AND THE REST...
Arsenal's Tomas Rosicky is wanted by wealthy Greek giants Olympiakos...Newcastle are set to make a shock move for versatile Middlesbrough star Rhys Williams...David Beckham will bag £12.5million by following Carlo Ancelotti into Paris Saint-Germain...West Ham boss Sam Allardyce has made a £3million bid for Huddersfield wonderkid Jordan Rhodes...Nottingham Forest want £2.5million for Chris Gunter. Norwich have had two bids waved away, while Fulham and Blackburn are also chasing the defender...Alan Pardew is planning a £3million January swoop for Sheffield United's teen sensation Harry Maguire...Luke Young says QPR would be mad to sell Adel Taarabt...Martin Jol is considering a move for PSG striker Guillaume Hoarau once he sells Andrew Johnson...DJ Campbell is being offered a move back to Blackpool just six months after quitting for QPR...Fulham are ready to bid £3.5million for Doncaster striker Billy Sharp...Napoli striker Edinson Cavani's agent says he is not attempting to engineer a move to Chelsea.
www.football365.com

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