Arsenal bid £12m for Cabaye, and £35m for Michu, Williams
Newcastle turn down offer for Cabaye, and Swansea prepare to play hardball over Michu
ONE game in and already it's going pear-shaped for the Gunners. Humiliated 3-1 at home by Aston Villa on Saturday, glum Gooners made plain their impatience at the final whistle with Arsene Wenger's failure to sign a big name during the summer.
But that could all change in the coming days with the Sunday Mirror reporting that the Nutty Frenchman is eyeing up Swansea striker Michu.
Apparently Wenger "will be told to pay £25 million" to prise Michu from the Liberty Stadium with Swansea chairman Huw Jenkins prepared to play hardball in the knowledge Arsenal are desperate to land a quality frontman before the transfer window slams shut on 2 September.
Michu, who scored 22 goals in his debut Premier League season, penned an extension to his Swansea contract earlier in the year, one that keeps him in Wales until 2016, and consequently Jenkins will accept nothing less than £25m for a player who cost the club £2m from Rayo Vallecano 12 months ago.
But Michu is not the only Swansea player Wenger has his eye on according to the Evening Standard. It reports that the under-fire Frenchman is also keen on defender Ashley Williams, who has been linked with a move to Arsenal for months, although his club insists that no-one has been in contact with them about a switch.
The Standard says that the Gunners would be prepared to pay £35m for the pair.
It also reports that Wenger has lodged an offer of £12m for Newcastle midfielder Yohan Cabaye after Mikel Arteta was ruled out for six weeks.
The Standard claims that Cabaye is keen to quit Newcastle but says that Arsenal’s opening offer is set to be rejected. If the player does want to leave St James' Park the Magpies believe they can get a much better price for him, particularly as other clubs, including Paris Saint Germain, Manchester United and Spurs are said to be interested in the 27-year-old French international.
Back with the Mirror again, and it claims Micah Richards of Manchester City is another player that Wenger has identified as a potential target.
The paper claims the England man "fits the defensive bill perfectly" for Arsenal, which presumably means he's prone to give away penalties, is hopeless at man-marking and couldn't time a tackle if his life depended on it. Richards has two years remaining on his existing contract with the Sky Blues but he has yet to sign and Arsenal have reportedly been making inquiries of late.
Atletico Madrid full-back Juanfran is another defender "who interests Arsenal" says the paper while club scouts are also checking out PSV Eindhoven's Belgian "wonderkid" Zakaria Bakkali.
But according to the Sunday Express, they're not the only ones keen on making a swoop for the 17-year-old winger. Chelsea and Manchester City "recently sent a delegation" to watch the Belgium Under-21 player, who last week became the youngest player to bag a hat-trick in the Dutch League when he put NEC Nijmegen to the sword.
And might the Gunners still be holding a flame for Wayne Rooney? The Sunday Times claimed that the Manchester United forward, who allegedly refused to celebrate with his team-mates after their 4-1 win at Swansea on Saturday, is still yearning for a fresh start.
The paper says that Chelsea are "ready to test" the resolve of United boss David Moyes to keep hold of Rooney with a £40m bid in the coming days. But Arsenal have also indicated their interest and their bungling display against Villa might convince Wenger to offer whatever United want for Rooney.
Such is the fuss over Arsenal that Manchester United's transfer travails seem trivial by comparison. However, David Moyes is not faring much better than Arsene Wenger and has infuriated his former club, Everton, with what is called a "derisory and insulting" offer of £28m for Marouane Fellaini and Leighton Baines.
The bid was lodged last week and made public by Everton after the opening weekend of the season, says the Daily Telegraph. Despite Everton's anger over the offer, the paper says it would be "major surprise" if Moyes did not return with an improved offer.
Finally, the BBC reports that Southampton have signed Italy striker Pablo Osvaldo from Roma for a club-record fee of £15m. The 27-year-old, capped nine times by his country, has penned a four-year deal with the Saints and will be officially unveiled at St Mary's later today.
According to the Southern Daily Echo, Roma will pocket approximately £15m for the Argentine-born Osvaldo, plus another £1.5m in add-ons over the coming months and years.
Southampton's previous record signings were the £12m they forked out for Gaston Ramirez and Victor Wanyama, and the Echo says Osvaldo was tempted to the south coast by the prospect of linking up once more with Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino, his former gaffer at Espanyol. ·