Riccardo Montolivo could be on his way to Arsenal

Sep 20, 2011
Bill Mann

Transfer Talk: Fiorentina midfielder ready to swap Italy for north London in new year

ARSENAL are hoping to sign Riccardo Montolivo in the new year, according to Talksport. The 26-year-old midfielder has spent all his professional career with Fiorentina in Serie A, but apparently the Italian international feels it's time for a change of scenery.

Montolivo (centre) is out of contract next summer and Talksport claims that he has already rejected the offer of an extension, instead casting his eyes north to the Premier League. Apparently if Montolivo and Fiorentina fail to renegotiate his contract, he'll be sold in January's transfer window with Arsenal at the front of the queue.

Still in north London, Harry Redknapp has opened his heart over disgruntled gloveman Heurelho Gomes. The Brazilian has lost his place between the sticks this season to Brad Friedel and the Spurs boss has said he understands Gomes's state of mind.

"I don't think he is happy here, we don't want to kid ourselves," explained Redknapp, who is set to play Gomes in Tottenham's Carling Cup tie tonight against Stoke. "He wants to play in the World Cup in Brazil. Obviously to do that he needs to be playing so it's going to be a problem."

It's been suggested that Gomes might return to his homeland to play for Corinthians in the hope of forcing his way into Brazil's World Cup squad, and Redknapp didn't dispel the rumour. "We will wait and see where that takes us at the next [transfer] window," said Redknapp. "But while he is here you couldn't get a better pro. He has done nothing wrong at all."

In other news, Real Madrid are said to be closing in on Brazilian striker Neymar. The 19-year-old has been linked with Chelsea and Barcelona in recent months but the Brazilian media reported on Monday that the teenage frontman underwent a medical at the Bernabeu last Friday and will be unveiled as a Real player this week.

But in an interview with Spanish rag AS, Real's sporting director Miguel Pardeza was keeping his cards close to his chest, saying: "We have no comment. We can only talk about our players. Neymar is an interesting player. There is nothing to add."

And Real coach Jose Mourinho was similarly coy, telling reporters: "I do not know anything about Neymar, I only know about my players." But that hasn't stopped the Daily Mail claiming that Neymar will become the fourth most expensive player in the game's history next summer when he signs for Real for £53m.

Finally, the Sun says that Manchester City will offer Roma £8m in January for Daniele De Rossi. Apparently Sky Blues boss Roberto Mancini had wanted to snap up the 28-year-old midfielder in the summer but there wasn't enough left in the kitty following City's acquisition of Sergio Aguero and Samir Nasri.

But after City "did an Arsenal" against Fulham on Sunday – in other words, squandered a 2-0 lead to end up drawing 2-2 – Mancini has been given the green light to sign De Rossi in order to add some steel to City's midfield.

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