Premier League – Paper Round: Bendtner Bayern-bound
The 22-year-old, who has struggled with a groin injury for much of this season, said last week: “If the situation doesn’t chance – if I keep sitting on the bench at Arsenal I must leave. It’s as simple as that.”
Bendtner, who has scored 21 goals in 86 Premier League games (37 starts) since arriving in north London in 2005, is also being tracked by Milan, by Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is unwilling to let the forward leave.
He said: “I want him to stay. I have known him since he was 16 years old and I have a strong rapport with him. I like him as a player and a person, even if I do not agree with every statement. Overall I want him to stay and be part of the group.” (Daily Mirror)
Former Inter forward Balotelli made little attempt to hide the fact that he is a Milan fan, even while playing for their city rivals.
The story’s basis seems to come from the fact that Milan chief Adriano Galliani and Balotelli dined in the same restaurant after the 20-year-old went to the San Siro to watch the Milan derby, which the Rossoneri won 1-0 thanks to an early Zlatan Ibrahimovic penalty.
Balotelli said: “I have never said anything (about joining Milan). It’s only a coincidence that we were in the same restaurant. Since I left Italy, I am the friend of all the teams. It was nice that Galliani came over to say hello to me.”
Galliani added: “We don’t want to create a scene. We don’t bother players and other clubs. Balotelli is a City player and that’s it.” (Daily Mail)
Meanwhile at Eastlands, winger Adam Johnson has revealed that he would consider a move away from City in the future if he continues to be left on the bench.
Despite winning rave reviews for his performances for club and country, City manager Roberto Mancini has only started the former Middlesbrough man in five of City’s 12 league matches so far this term, and the 23-year-old admits that cannot go on indefinitely.
He said: “Every footballer has to think about it when the time comes. It is still early but I definitely would consider it.
“Last season and in games at the beginning of this season I was still having an impact when I started.” (The Sun)
Former City midfielder Stephen Ireland has failed to set the world alight since moving to Aston Villa in the summer as a makeweight in the deal that sent James Milner the other way, but that has not put off Stoke City manager Tony Pulis lining up a loan move for him in January.
Ireland is yet to score in his eight appearances for Villa, and has struggled to regain the form which made him look such a prospect in the days before the Sheikh Mansour takeover at City.
Pulis believes he can help the 24-year-old rediscover his best form, and is looking to bring him to the Britannia Stadium on loan with a view to a permanent £6 million move. (Daily Mirror)
Tottenham Hotspur‘s long-standing interest in West Ham midfielder Scott Parker could be displayed again come January, with Spurs ready to make another bid for the Hammers skipper due to the Tom Huddlestone being ruled out for three months with an ankle injury.
West Ham turned down an approach from their London rivals in the summer, and convinced their talismanic captain to sign a new deal instead.
Owners David Gold and David Sullivan have vowed they will not sell Parker, once again their star performer in a season much of which has been spent at the bottom of the table, but would also find it hard to resist a mega-money bid from Spurs. (Daily Express)