'It's definite!' Arsenal sign Lukas Podolski for £100,000 a week
Gunners chiefs fly to Cologne to finalise the deal – and they might get defender Jan Vertonghen too
NEITHER Arsenal nor the player himself will confirm it until the end of the season, but the Daily Mail is now convinced that Lukas Podolski has definitely agreed to join Arsenal on a £10.9m transfer. Apparently the deal was finalised over the weekend after "Gunners chiefs flew to Cologne" to hammer out the details.
The German striker will earn £100,000-per-week in a four-year deal and will arrive at the Emirates in the summer, says the Mail, backing up the BBC story of last week that the Gunners had finally got their man.
The Mail says Arsenal are delighted at the capture of the 26-year-old striker, although the player continues to keep mum. "We'll just have to wait and see, but nothing has been decided yet," he's quoted as saying in The Daily Telegraph.
Meanwhile the Daily Mirror reckons that Arsenal are set to heap more misery on Spurs by nicking Jan Vertonghen from under their noses. Not so long ago, the Lilywhites were lording it over their north London rivals but that was before their season went for a Burton, including a 5-2 thrashing at the Emirates.
According to the Mirror, the Ajax defender had been tipped to make a £10m move to the Lane in the summer, but he's now having second thoughts after realising after recent results that could mean the Europa League.
Instead Vertonghen made "a secret visit" to London last Tuesday to watch Arsenal annihilate AC Milan in the Champions League. Apparently he was "massively impressed by the football Arsenal produced" and is set to swap the Dutch club for Arsenal in June in what will be a £20m move.
Still with the Mirror and the red top reckons Edin Dzeko could be on his way out of Manchester City having "failed to deliver consistently". The Bosnian striker arrived from German club Wolfsburg 14 months ago in a £27m deal but is said to be "unhappy" at not getting more game time.
With Carlos Tevez no longer persona non grata at City, Dzeko's likely to see even more of the bench and as a result a number of European clubs are lining up to sign the 25-year-old. The Mirror claims that Inter Milan and Juventus are at the front of the queue with both prepared to splash the cash in the summer.
Goal.com reports that Alex Ferguson was in France on Saturday and not to stock up on a few bottles of red. Rather the Manchester United supremo was at Lyon to see them beat Lille 2-1 in the French first division, and he was said to have eyes only for Lille playmaker Eden Hazard. The 21-year-old has been linked with a host of European powerhouses, including Arsenal, Real Madrid and Barcelona, but could a move to Manchester be in the offing?
"I didn't know he was here," said Hazard when told of Ferguson's presence. The Belgian star has said he intends to move on at the end of the season and Lille won't stand in his way, just as long as they receive £35m in return.
Finally, Liverpool striker Luis Suarez has gone from dropping clangers to dropping "bombshells". That's how The Sun describes the news he delivered over the weekend when asked if he fancied a move to Paris Saint Germain. "Yes, Paris or other clubs," said the 25-year-old South American, who earlier this season was found guilty of racially abusing Patrice Evra. He added: "Paris are a big team, the club is becoming what it used to be again… and they are recruiting players to strengthen."