Arsenal won't help Didier Drogba escape China, says Wenger

Didier Drogba of Shanghai Shenhua

Meanwhile, Arsenal, Man United and Spurs reportedly miss out on Brazilian star Ganso

BY Bill Mann LAST UPDATED AT 07:15 ON Fri 14 Sep 2012

ARSENE WENGER has poured cold water on speculation that former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba might be heading to Arsenal. The Ivory Coast star left the Blues in the summer to join Shanghai Shenhua in the Chinese Super League.

Since then, a boardroom bust-up has fuelled rumours that Drogba is looking for a way out of China. Arsenal, Liverpool and Real Madrid have all been mentioned as possible escape routes, the Independent reports.

Asked if they were planning a bid, Arsene Wenger said: “At the moment no. In my opinion he is not free. He has just left England.

“I don't know about the situation because he came out with a completely different statement.

“You hear he might go to Real Madrid - but then he says 'I am staying in China'. Is it just because he wants to be paid off? I don't know.”

Meanwhile, alarm is spreading throughout the Premier League with the news that Santos star Ganso could be about to sign a deal with Sao Paulo. The 22-year-old frontman has been eyed up by Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham recently and there was strong speculation that one of the trio would make their move in January.

But according to Talksport, Sao Paulo are lining up a £7m swoop for the South American striker after Ganso proved he had fully recovered from a string of injuries.

Asked about a possible deal involving Sao Paulo, Santos president Luis Alvaro de Oliveira Ribeiro said there had been contact but he also sent out a warning that may yet give the English clubs hope. "There is no point Sao Paulo submitting proposal for less than £7.3 million, it would be a waste of paper," Ribeiro said in an interview with a Brazilian broadcaster. "This is the price required for Ganso to leave Santos.”

Swansea City seem to have heeded our story yesterday concerning Liverpool’s desire to bring Michel Vorm to Anfield. The Dutch keeper is said to be on the Reds’ wishlist after a series of shocking performances by Pepe Reina have proved the last straw for Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers. Rodgers, who knows Vorm well having coached last season at Swansea, is mulling over a New Year move and that appears to have put the frightners on Swansea.

The Metro claims that the Welsh outfit will “wrap up new deals” for Vorm, Neil Taylor and Ashley Williams in order to keep them at the Liberty Stadium and away from the prying eyes of other clubs.

Stoke City have loaned out midfielder Michael Tonge to Leeds United for a three-month spell. "This is a great move for Michael, and I am sure he will go there and do extremely well for them," said Potters’ boss Tony Pulis on Stoke's official website.

Finally, Juventus have been told they have next to no hope of landing Fiorentina forward Stevan Jovetic, and that’s sparked optimism at the Etihad Stadium. Manchester City are known to have scouted out the 22-year-old hitman in recent months, and while they had no luck in landing him in the summer, Talksport claims the Italian media believe he could be on his way to England in June.

City will have to meet Fiorentina’s asking price of £30m but the Serie A club seem determined to cash in on Jovetic as long as it’s not a rival Italian club doing the bidding. · 

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