Arsenal and Man Utd join scramble for Reus… and Suarez
German midfielder 'on the verge' of Premier League move; has Suarez's Barcelona dream turned sour?
Like a good pub, the transfer window wouldn't be the same without the familiar faces at the bar. And some old favourites, including Marco Reus, Mario Balotelli and Luis Suarez are back in the spotlight today:
• Reports from Germany suggest that Marco Reus is "on the verge" of leaving Borussia Dortmund and the Daily Star claims that the 25-year-old midfielder is being tailed by Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City. Currently recuperating from injury, Reus is allegedly fed up with Dortmund's slump in form and the Star says he is "set to reject a new contract". As for who the frontrunners to sign him are, Chelsea are believed to be in pole position after boss Jose Mourinho told Roman Abramovich he must sign the German.
• He hasn't bitten anyone for months, but Luis Suarez is still being tipped for a shock early exit from Barcelona by the Daily Mail. With a paltry (by his standards) three goals in 12 games and his new club in turmoil after the sacking of sporting director Adoni Zubizarreta the £75m Uruguayan is "coming under increasing scrutiny" at the Camp Nou. Long-term admirers Arsenal, along with Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea are all on alert says the paper. "Although Barcelona have no intention of selling Suarez yet, he could be the fall guy in the summer under a new regime at the Nou Camp," it explains.
• Arsenal are said to be after Atletico Madrid midfielder Mario Sanchez though the Daily Express says they will face a "staunch fight" with Napoli for the player. It seems the Spanish side are bracing themselves for the 27-year-old's departure this month with the La Liga champions bringing Ruben 'Cani' Gracia to strengthen the midfield and the question remains whether Sanchez will choose London over Naples.
• Uzbek midfielder Odil Ahmedov is reportedly on Arsenal's radar with Metro saying Arsene Wenger is "an admirer" of the tough-tackling 27-year-old. Ahmedov belongs to Russian club FC Krasnodar right now but Metro believes it won't be long before he seals a move to the Emirates. It's not the first time Ahmedov has been linked with the Gunners, and in the past he's admitted "if I had the choice [I would want] to play for Arsenal".
• The Daily Express says Liverpool are running the rule over Mainz striker Shinji Okazaki even though Leicester have already tabled an £8m bid for the Japanese frontman. Arsenal have also been linked with Okazaki in the past but it's believed Liverpool are in pole position with the Express reporting that he could well replace Mario Balotelli, who could be set to join Olympiakos on a six-month loan.
• Swansea are sticking to their guns over the transfer of Wilfried Bony to Manchester City, with the Welsh club refusing to accept anything less than the £30m that they demanding for the striker. Late last year Bony signed a new deal at the Liberty Stadium that removed the £19m buy-out clause in his contract, reports ITV. Manager Gary Monk said the most important thing was whether Man City's offer would match "the valuation that Swansea hold".
• One deal in the bag concerns Bayer Leverkusen defender Philipp Wollscheid, who has joined Stoke City on loan until the end of the season. According to Goal.com, Stoke "have an option to sign" the 25-year-old centre-back "for £3m should he impress Mark Hughes between now and May" Hughes reacted to the deal by telling Stoke's official website: "Philipp is a player we've been aware of and have been tracking for some time and he will add to the competition for places in the centre of our defence."
• The Daily Mirror says that if Manchester United part company with Spanish goalkeeper David de Gea they might make an approach for Newcastle's Tim Krul. De Gea is allegedly "keen on a return to his homeland" and though United are on the brink of signing Victor Valdes on a short-term deal the Mirror says Krul might be lured to Old Trafford in the summer as De Gea's long-term replacement. Krul played under Louis van Gaal for Holland in last year's World Cup and the Dutchman is considered one of the most reliable glovemen in the Premier League.
• The Daily Telegraph reports that Man Utd's attempts to secure De Gea on a long-term contract are being hampered by the situation involving his team-mate Radamel Falcao. The bizarre problem has arisen because both players are represented by the same agent, Jorge Mendes, and his priority is resolving the fate of Colombian striker Falcao. "A £43.2m transfer fee has already been agreed with Monaco for Falcao, with personal terms also agreed," says the paper, but United are "under pressure to sign off a permanent deal for the Colombian forward... before the acceleration of talks with De Gea".
• Polish teenager Krystian Bielik has confirmed he is on his way to Arsenal, once a fee has been agreed with his current club Legia Warsaw. The defensive midfielder said he had agreed to join the Gunners and was looking forward to the deal being finalised, reports Metro.