Transfers – Gossip Shop: Benitez to steal Tevez

Eurosport

It seems Rafael Benitez has succeeded in his quest to further rile Sir Alex Ferguson, and his ammunition comes in the shape of a stocky Argentine called Carlos.

FOOTBALL 2008-2009 Premier League Manchester United Tevez - 0

Many thought the ‘Tevez Saga’ had been settled in court, but it runs on in a different guise at Old Trafford, as Manchester United contemplate the permanent signing of the striker.

But in seizing the opportunity to sign an explosive forward and further antagonise his verbal sparring partner, Benitez looks to have found the perfect blend.

The apparent reconciliation of George Gillett and Tom Hicks has been cited as a potential factor in Benitez’s bullish approach to the summer transfer market.

Tevez has been left in limbo this season, with his loan deal at the English champions expiring at the end of the current campaign.

The player – or his representatives, if you prefer – have made no secret of the 25-year-old’s frustration with the ongoing lack of clarity with regards to his footballing future.

But one potential stumbling block, beyond the conspicuous amount of money which would be demanded for the Argentine, is the fans’ factor: as Tevez is often at pains to point out, he loves the United fans, and vice versa.

While The Times believes Tevez will indeed head to Anfield, The Sun reveals United midfielder Michael Carrick‘s “don’t leave us” plea to his unsettled team-mate.

Meanwhile, Liverpool winger/forward Ryan Babel has written himself off as a “potential talent”, stating that, at 23-years-old, he is now too old to be seen as an exciting prospect.

With brutal honesty, the Dutchman has accepted that he can’t use his age as an excuse any longer, and that he must improve on the six league starts he has made this season.

His birthday party must have been a real belter with such a sober outlook!

Eldin Jakupovic’s potential move to Tottenham looks increasingly likely as the Swiss keeper proved himself to be an agents’ dream by revealing that he is indeed in transfer negotiations.

The words every club director dreads were eagerly expounded by Jakupovic, who claims that Spurs have been after his services for a while – Daniel Levy must be delighted to hear his frank remarks.

“Yes, it’s true, I am in touch with Tottenham Hotspur,” he told Basler Zeitung.

“But I only want to talk it about when the deal is fully completed.”

And his reserved stance clearly reflects that!

The Mirror suggest that Jose Mourinho wants to go back to his former club Chelsea, but the unoriginality of that suggestion is slammed, the paper go on to explain that he only wants to visit.

The Portugese manager is reportedly on a mission to secure the services of his midfield maestro at Porto, his compatriot Deco.

Back to Liverpool briefly, where Stoke boss Tony Pulis has joined the race to sign veteran defender Sami Hyppia from the Reds.

Sunderland and Blackburn have already declared an interest in the Finn, who is seeking a greater run of games away from Merseyside next season.

The Daily Record loves nothing more than linking a Scottish-based player with a move elsewhere, and Celtic goalkeeper Artur Boruc is the latest target for a top European club.

The mercurial keeper is reportedly a £7 million target for Bayern Munich, with head coach Juergen Klinsmann apparently declaring himself a fan.

Wigan boss Steve Bruce has made himself a reputation for picking up bargains with Dave Whelan’s cheque book, and now the Latics boss has his sights set on defender Nathaniel Clyne from ex-club Crystal Palace. I’m sure Eagles owner Simon Jordan will happy to oblige.

Birmingham boss Alex McLeish is understood to be keen on bringing Manchester City keeper Joe Hart to the club on loan for next season if the Blues are promoted to the Premier League.

Staying in the Midlands, and West Brom boss Tony Mowbray will step up his chase for Swindon striker Simon Cox, who is also being tracked by Derby, Leicester and QPR.

The Baggies are also in hot pursuit of Plymouth’s Ashley Barnes – with Fulham also interested in the striker.

Back to Scotland, and St Mirren manager Gus MacPherson has reportedly demanded in excess of £1m for midfielder Andy Dorman, with a host of clubs tracking his every move.

Hamilton goalkeeper Tomas Cerny, who is on loan from Sigma Olomouc, is understood to have agreed personal terms with the Scottish Premier League side on a permanent deal.

And finally, the Star scream from their sport pages that Chelsea have in actual fact succeeded in their attempts to bring in AC Milan boss Carlo Ancelotti to Stamford Bridge as their next manager.

Convinced? No; but maybe David Beckham will tell us after his next English language lesson with the coach.

Dan Quarrell / Eurosport

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