Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Will the silly season end already?

With only a few days remaining in the transfer window, activity in the market is expected to intensify until the final hour on Aug 31. And as always, we can expect some major last ditch (or panic) signings on deadline day that will eclipsed anything that happens on the pitch this weekend in the Premier League.

Thankfully, one of the longest transfer sagas of our time (Cesc Fabregas to Barcelona)is behind us but there are still several purported rumors that have plagued the transfer market all summer that are expected to go into fifth gear in thr coming days. These rumours are:

1. Samir Nasri to Man City

Like many talented French footballers of the last decade, Samir Nasri has been labeled the next Zidane by many commentators in his home country. And while Nasri's no Zidane, very few can deny the fact that the Frenchman has been one of the most talented and intelligent footballers in the Premier League. As such, it was no surprise that Man City was going to come knocking on Arsene Wenger's door sooner or later for the French national. After a series of denials by the Gunners, and some jeering from the home crowd, it appears as though Roberto Mancini will finally have his man. And Arsenal would have lost two of their most important players in a span of two weeks.

2. Wesley Sneijder to Man Utd

When Cristiano Ronaldo left Man Utd two seasons ago, he left a huge gaping void behind. Znevermind the fact that his old club still managed to win the Premier Leafue for a record 19th time the season right after his departure. United somehow managed without him in the league but against Barcelona in the Champions League final in May, the absence of a game-changing footballer in the team was sorely missed. Add to that the retirement of club legend Paul Scholes and it would appear as though there is a serious dearth of options in the creative department at Old Trafford. And so, enter Wesley Sneijder. The Dutch midfielder has been in sensational form for both country and Inter Milan over the last few seasons that it's no surprise that Sir Alex sees him as the final jigsaw piece to his squad. Furthermore, the Scotsman has been lucky with the Dutch in the past ( Jaap Stam, Ruud Van Nistelrooy and Edwin Van Der Sar). so far, Sneijder's salary requirements have been a stumbling block but with reports indicating the midfielder is willing to accept a pay cut, a deal could be imminent. As long as Sir Alex admits he's interested. Until then, we are in for some big Sneijder- Man U rumors in the days ahead.

3. Luka Modric to Tottenham

Here's another one that just won't go away. Like Nasri, Modric had a great season in 2010/11. As expected, the Croatian midfielder has come under the radar of several clubs including Roman Abramovich' Chelsea which is undergoing yet another rebuilding project under new management. With Harry Redknapp slowly warming up to the idea of losing his best player (he's set his sights on using the cash to buy Emanuel Adebayor), it appear as though a deal may be in the offing. But despite Redknapp's indirect overtures to Stamford Bridge, there's no word yet if the Blues will move for Modric. Adding to that is the fact that Chelsea see, closer to signing Juan Mata from Valencia instead. But I have a bigger question. If Modric does go to Chelsea, what will happen to Frank Lampard?