Arsenal rule out Walcott sale, but will Bendtner join Spurs?
Good news on two fronts for Arsenal, as Torres inches towards Chelsea exit
AFTER VICTORY over Spurs in the north london derby at the weekend things are looking up for Arsenal and there was good news for Gunners on two fronts on Monday.
First of all Arsene Wenger has insisted that he will not sell Theo Walcott in January even if he fails to agree to a contract extension before the transfer window opens, and the Arsenal manager remains adamant that the winger (or striker) will decide to stay on at the Emirates.
Walcott's contract expires at the end of the season and he has rejected a £75,000-a-week deal to stay. If a new agreement is not thrashed out before the summer he could become the third high profile star to walk out of the club for free, following in the footsteps of Cesc Fabregas and Robin van Persie.
The second piece of good news concerns unwanted striker Nicklas Bendtner, who is currently on a season-long loan at Jeventus, where he has been showing off his impressive bench-warming abilities. The not-so-great Dane has now revealed that he would be happy to play for Spurs if Arsenal were able to persuade their bitter rivals to take him off their hands.
"History is filled with examples of players moving between rival clubs and I can't rule out clubs due to where I might have been in the past," Bendtner told website bold.dk. And Sky Sports reports that the hitman was full of praise for London. "I still have a great relationship with London, which is a city that I adore," he said.
One player who is fed up with life in London is Chelsea misfit Fernando Torres. After reports last week that Chelsea had given up on him the Daily Mail today reports that the feeling is mutual and that the player is hankering after a return to his homeland, Spain.
The paper once again raises the possibility of a swap deal involving Radamel Falcao moving to Chelsea from Ateletico Madrid, while Torres heads to his old club in return.
Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson has said the club would love to welcome back Cristiano Ronaldo when the January transfer window opens.
Rumours have been growing in recent weeks that the Red Devils will look to entice the Portuguese striker back to Old Trafford, but according to Talksport the problem the club faces is the cost. Asked if United would like to have Ronaldo back from Real Madrid, Ferguson replied: "I'd like to think it would be [so] but I don't think it will happen."
Asked why not, he said: "You're talking about incredible amounts of money now."
United sold Ronaldo to Real Madrid in 2009 in a record £80m move, and Ferguson believes that the 27-year-old has now made himself "unbuyable". He added: "Who could afford to buy him?"
But if United have been priced out of that particular market, they may have more luck with Crystal Palace sensation Wilfried Zaha. The People claims that Ferguson is "planning to blow away his rivals" with a New Year bid for the 20-year-old forward in a matter of weeks.
Zaha, who made his England debut against Sweden last week, has been linked with a move from the Palace to one of either Tottenham and Arsenal. But the People says Ferguson has been so impressed with what he's seen of him, he now fancies a piece of the action.
It's claimed United will offer "what it takes" to bring him to Old Trafford. A United insider is quoted as saying: "Sir Alex now thinks Zaha has the skill and bottle to play for United – and he wants him badly."
Finally, The Sun says that Paris Saint-German are "ready to slug it out with both Milan clubs" if Manchester City decide to ditch Mario Balotelli in January. Apparently PSG are in search of a striker – even with the prolific Zlatan Ibrahimovic on their books – and their eyes have alighted on the temperamental Balotelli even though Inter and AC Milan are circling.
The 22-year-old has failed to nail down a spot in the City starting line-up this season, and the Sun says the patience of manager Roberto Mancini is "wearing thin". Consequently if PSG come in with an offer in excess of £30m the Sky Blues could be tempted to finally wash their hands of Bonkers Balotelli.