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ESPN FC Posted by ESPN staff
Aug 28, 2014

United's love is Blind; Bayern looking Xabi

Bayern Munich agree to sign Xabi Alonso from Real Madrid and will complete the transfer in the coming days.

As the last days of summer come upon us, we're reminded that another months' long reason for celebration is also coming to a close. Join us for the desperate final days of transfer season...

Top pick: Bayern Munich have confirmed they have agreed a deal with Xabi Alonso over the Real Madrid midfielder's proposed move to the Bundesliga champions.

- Manchester United have been told that they will have to stump up 20 million pounds to sign Ajax defender Daley Blind, while they could turn their attentions to Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho should they fail to agree a deal with Juventus for Chile international Arturo Vidal

- Arsenal are leading the race to sign wantaway Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Adrien Rabiot, with the player's mother/agent travelling to London to negotiate a deal. 

23.00 BST: That's it for today's live Transfer Talk blog. But Nick Ames is, at this very moment, typing away a fresh edition that will review all the latest newspaper rumours. Stay tuned.

22.28 BST: Defender Jack Robinson has left Liverpool to join QPR - who have immediately loaned him out to Championship side Huddersfield for the season.

21.47 BST: DONE DEAL -- Esteban Cambiasso has arrived in the Premier League...

21.10 BST: Manchester City's director of football Txiki Begiristain has been asked about the possibility of any new signings: "Incomings no, but there are some players who need to play who will have more opportunities at other clubs.''

20.43 BST Three Premier League teams (yes, that many) are after Tom Cleverley, so say reports. Full story right here.

20.23 BST: Tom Cleverley is the subject of interest of three Premier League clubs after Manchester United made the decision to sell their England midfielder, sources have told ESPN. Full story to follow.

19.42 BST: Manchester United have confirmed Wilfried Zaha's exit...

19.02 BST: Louis van Gaal has hinted at exits and arrivals before the deadline: "I had a conversation after lunch with the players and I said that maybe after this weekend we shall have another group because players shall go away and others shall come in."

18.34 BST: West Brom boss Alan Irvine on his transfer plans: "We have a few plates spinning at the moment. If you pin all your hopes on one player and that one goes wrong where do you turn? You have got to make sure there are other options. We have a preferred choice but that might not be the one which happens."

18.05 BST: Although this is usually strictly a transfer talk zone, let us also draw your attention to the Champions League group stage draw. Liverpool got...

17.35 BST Done Deal Millwall have confirmed that Swedish striker Mathias Ranegie has joined the club on loan from Watford.

17.25 BST New Crystal Palace manager Neil Warnock is keen on bringing Norwich defender Sebastian Bassong to Selhurst Park.

The Cameroon international has been frozen out at Carrow Road this season by manager Neil Adams and talkSPORT speculate that he could be available for as little as two million pounds.

17.16 BST Chelsea are eyeing up a bid for Roma striker Mattia Destro as Jose Mourinho prepares for life without Fernando Torres.

Torres looks set to join Milan in the coming days as a replacement for Mario Balotelli but his departure would leave the Blues with only Diego Costa and Didier Drogba as their two striking options.

Destro netted 13 times in 20 starts for the Giallorossi last season as they narrowly missed out on the Serie A title and The Daily Star says that the 23-year-old could be available for as little as 20 million pounds.

17.06 BST ESPN blogger Lee Roden says that despite the big money signings of James Rodriguez and Luis Suarez at Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively, it will be Toni Kroos and Ivan Rakitic who are really tasked with driving La Liga's big two forward. Read his article here

Angel Di Maria's record-breaking move to Manchester United makes him the latest in an increasingly long list of stars to swap La Liga for the Premier League.

16.56 BST As Transfer Talk told you earlier today, Aston Villa have expressed an interest in signing Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley.

And it appears that Paul Lambert is getting closer to landing the 25-year-old England international after the Red Devils accepted their opening bid, believed to be in the region of eight million pounds.

16.50 BST Southampton and Sunderland are ready to battle it out for Celtic defender Virgil van Dijk.

The 23-year-old Dutch centre-back has been the subject of interest from a number of European clubs this summer and is determined to leave the Scottish champions following their Champions League exit to Maribor on Tuesday night.

Sky Sports says that Europa League holders Sevilla are also interested in van Dijk though Celtic boss Ronny Delia is reluctant to sell him. 

16.40 BST Monaco's Radamel Falcao could receive several offers before the transfer window closes on Monday, as several sources have told ESPN FC that a number of elite European clubs are willing to take him on loan this season. 

The Ligue 1 club are keen to get Falcao's high wages off the payroll due to a restructuring of the first team and they have set a fee of 20 million euros to take the Colombian talisman on loan for a season. Read the full story here.

Monaco are reportedly prepared to allow striker Radamel Falcao leave the club on loan.

16.30 BST The Manchester United stories keep on coming and this one concerns much-maligned midfielder Marouane Fellaini who looks set to stay at the club until at least January after his Belgium manager Marc Wilmots said he will be sidelined for two or three weeks. Read the full story here.

16.20 BST The eagle is flying home! Wilfried Zaha revealed on Twitter that he has rejoined Crystal Palace on loan from Manchester United, just over 18 months after leaving for 15 million pounds. Read the full story here.

Wilfried Zaha has rejoined Crystal Palace on a season-long loan.

16.11 BST Louis van Gaal has told Manchester United fans that they can expect to see more signings before the transfer window closes.

The Red Devils have already spent in excess of 130 million pounds on players this summer -- a club record -- but van Gaal says the club are not finished in the market just yet.

The Dutch coach also confirmed that Argentina left-back Marcos Rojo is still awaiting a work permit and therefore will not be available to face Burnley this weekend. 

16.02 BST Inter president Erick Thohir has confirmed that the club are in talks to sign Paris Saint-Germain forward Ezequiel Lavezzi.

The Argentina international has struggled to hold down a regular starting place in Paris since signing from Napoli in 2012 and he has been strongly linked with a return to Italy.

Lavezzi's potential arrival in Milan is likely to spell the end for Colombia midfielder Fredy Guarin, who is expected to make the move to Russian side Zenit St Petersburg.

"Marco Fassone and Piero Ausilio spoke to Paris Saint-Germain and now I will meet them to see what the situation is," Thohir said, as reported by Football Italia. "It's not easy, we know that. There are four days left of the transfer market and we'll see what happens."

"We believe we have built a good team to compete in Serie A and the Europa League. There's a good balance between experienced, senior players and younger players.

"We need to balance the books as well because you see there are some clubs who can't buy players due to Financial Fair Play. It's important for us to protect our interests because otherwise we can't play in UEFA competitions."

Could PSG forward Ezequiel Lavezzi be heading back to the Serie A?

15.50 BST Speaking in a press conference today ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash with West Ham, Southampton manager Ronald Koeman says he is hopeful of making some signings in the closing days of the transfer window.

However, the Dutch coach has ruled out a move for Atletico Madrid defender Toby Alderweireld, calling the transfer "not realistic".

15.45 BST Aston Villa are plotting an eight million pound swoop for Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley.

The England international has come under heavy criticism over the past year for his dwindling performances and he has reportedly been told by Louis van Gaal that he can leave the club.

The Telegraph says that Villa owner Randy Lerner is prepared to make the funds available for Paul Lambert to complete the deal though he faces competition from Everton and Hull City for the 25-year-old's signature.

15.37 BST Done Deal Fulham have completed the signing of Gabor Kiraly from 1860 Munich.

The pjama-loving veteran goalkeeper has joined Felix Magath's side for an undisclosed fee and will provide some valuable experience to the youthful Cottagers squad.

15.30 BST Angel Di Maria is currently being unveiled as a Manchester United following his British transfer record 59.7 million pound move from Real Madrid.

And the Argentina international says he hopes to help restore the Red Devils to the peak of English football by impressing in the famous No.7 shirt.

15.23 BST Is the soap opera finally over? Reports in Italy claim that Arturo Vidal has told his Juventus teammates that he will stay at the club this season.

The Chile international midfielder has been constantly linked with a move to Manchester United this summer but it now seems that he will stay in Italy for at least one more year.

15.15 BST Lille coach Rene Girard has admitted that Ivory Coast international Salomon Kalou is eager to leave the club.

The former Chelsea forward was left out of Lyon's UEFA Champions League second-leg play-off defeat against Porto and a move away from France seems imminent.

Sunderland, Tottenham and Everton have all been linked with the 29-year-old who is believed to be available for around five million euros.

"I don't push anyone to the exit door," Girard told L'Equipe. "I have no say in what happens with Kalou. It is his own decision to leave."

15.05 BST Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso is in Munich to undergo his medical with the Bundesliga champions.

15.00 BST Will Angel Di Maria solve Manchester United's goalscoring problems?

14.55 BST Alessandro Del Piero will reveal his future in the next few days with the former Juventus and Sydney FC forward now being linked with a move to India.

The 39-year-old recently insisted he can carry on playing for at least another year and he had been in talks with Hungarian side Honved, who had offered him the legendary No. 10 shirt worn by Ferenc Puskas.

However, it appears that he could now sign a deal with Indian Super League franchise Delhi Dynamos before joining the MLS in 2015. Read the full story here.

14.45 BST Real Madrid could turn their attentions to signing Wolfsburg midfielder Luiz Gustavo in light of Xabi Alonso's request to leave the European champions and join Bayern Munich.

The Brazilian's agent told local paper WAZ that Gustavo would not be leaving the Bundesliga club this summer but the los Blancos board are reportedly hopeful of luring him to the Santiago Bernabeu by offering Champions League football. 

Arsenal have been strongly linked with a move for the holding midfielder but Goal.com says that Real Madrid are close to concluding a deal with Wolfsburg and are confident of having all the required paperwork complete ahead of the transfer deadline on September 1.

Luiz Gustavo's absence is a big concern for Brazil, who benefit from his aggression in defensive midfield.
Real Madrid are eyeing up Brazil international midfielder Luiz Gustavo as a replacement for Xabi Alonso.

14.36 BST Borussia Monchengladbach youngster Sinan Kurt remains hopeful Bayern Munich will reach an agreement to sign him before the close of the transfer window.

Kurt, who turned 18 in July, is eager to make the move to Bavaria, but the Bundesliga champions have so far offered only 500,000 euros upfront for his signature and The Foals have been unwilling to sell. Read the full story here

14.28 BST Tottenham and West Ham are reportedly battling it out to sign unsettled Barcelona midfielder Alex Song.

Argentine coach Mauricio Pochettino is hopeful of bringing in one or two faces before the transfer shuts on Monday night and it is believed that Spurs have also contacted Manchester United to discuss the possibility of taking striker Danny Welbeck on a season-long loan.

14.18 BST BREAKING: Sources have confirmed to ESPN FC that Manchester United have received bids from Valencia and Juventus for Mexico international striker Javier Hernandez.

14.13 BST Derby County are hopeful of signing Liverpool winger Jordan Ibe in time for Saturday's Championship clash against Ipswich Town.

The 18-year-old was heavily involved during the Reds' pre-season tour of the USA and has been touted as a future first-team player by Brendan Rodgers.

Rodgers is keen for the youngster to enjoy some first-team experience out on loan however and The Derby Telegraph hints that Steve McClaren's side have beaten Bolton in the race to sign him. 

14.04 BST Stuttgart defender Anthony Rudiger admits that it would be a dream to play in the Premier League.

The 21-year-old centre-back is regarded as one of the finest upcoming talents in the Bundesliga and he has been touted as the man to replace the recently-retired Per Mertesacker in the Germany national team. 

Rudiger admits to being flattered by interest from Manchester United but says that he must focus on developing in the Bundesliga for the time being. 

"Of course I am aware of the interest from Manchester United," he told Sport-BILD. "They are definitely one of the top clubs in Europe and they are in a league I have been dreaming of.

"The Premier League is very physical, intense, breathtaking and with a lot of goals. My focus, though, remains on playing for Stuttgart. For now, I just have to try and progress as a player."

13.50 BST The agent of Chelsea forward Fernando Torres has said she is optimistic the transfer of the Spanish forward to AC Milan will go through.

Milan are searching for a new striker to replace Mario Balotelli, who moved to Liverpool last week and Torres, who is currently the name at the top of Galliani's list, has moved a step closer to the Rossoneri after Thursday's negotiations.

After spending just over an hour in talks with Milan's general manager Adriano Galliani in the Italian city, Margarita Garay told La Gazzetta dello Sport: "I'm still positive."

13.40 BST New Liverpool signing Divock Origi says he turned down a move to Tottenham to sign for Liverpool.

The 19-year-old forward has been loaned back to Lille this season following an impressive World Cup campaign for Belgium and he admits that the opportunity to play in the Premier League convinced him that Liverpool was the right club for him. 

"Big Spanish, Italian and German clubs wanted me but my dream was to play in the Premier League," he said, as reported by The Daily Mirror. "I also went to Tottenham but of the clubs interested, I chose Liverpool."

Belgium international Divock Origi says he rejected a move to Tottenham to sign for Liverpool.

13.30 BST Roma are have identified Newcastle's Davide Santon and Torino's Matteo Darmian as their prime candidates for the full-back role.

The Giallorossi have been impressive in the transfer market so far this summer -- despite the sale of Medhi Benatia to Bayern Munich -- and they are close to finalising their squad in anticipation of ending a 13-year drought for the Scudetto.

Gazzetta dello Sport says that Santon and Darmian are attractive propositions for Rudi Garcia due to their defensive versatility but should bids fail for the Italian duo, Manchester United's Rafael Da Silva is a back-up target.

13.20 BST Javier Hernandez looks set to leave Manchester United this summer after Valencia and Juventus both lodged bids for the Mexico international striker.

Chicarito has struggled to make an impression since Louis van Gaal took charge of the Red Devils earlier this summer and the Dutch coach is reportedly prepared to offload the 26-year-old, who has made over 150 appearances for the club, either on loan or on a permanent deal. 

13.12 BST Granada have confirmed that Argentine attacking midfielder Diego Buonanotte has joined Mexican side Pachuca on a season-long loan.

13.06 BST Marseille have expressed an interest in taking Newcastle defender Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa on loan, according to Chronicle Live.

The French centre-back fell out of favour at St James Park towards the end of last season and is now vying with Steven Taylor for the back-up spot to Mike Williamson and Fabricio Coloccini.

Yanga-Mbiwa was offered to a number of Ligue 1 clubs earlier this summer but none could agree a financial package with the Magpies. 

12.58 BST Done Deal Atletico Madrid have completed the signing of Uruguayan defender Emiliano Velazquez from Danubio.

Velazquez was named the Uruguayan Primera Division's best defender as his current club Danubio won the title last season and he was also named in Oscar Tabarez's provisional World Cup squad, although he did not make the final 23.

The 20-year-old has been touted as a potential star by the Spanish champions and they have immediately loaned him out to fellow La Liga side Getafe as they are keen for him to earn regular first-team football in the Spanish top flight. 

12.48 BST Manchester United's midfield problems have been well documented in recent weeks but it seems unlikely that a 15-year-old would provide the solution.

The Guardian says that the Red Devils are eyeing up a bid for Norwegian prodigy Martin Odegaard, who became the country's youngest-ever player by winning his first cap against United Arab Emirates on Wednesday night.

The boyhood Liverpool fan has attracted interest from a number of clubs in Europe following his breakthrough at Norwegian side Stromsgodset this season and United are hoping to steal ahead of Barcelona and Juventus for the youngster's signature. 

12.40 BST Adil Rami has rejected Monaco's advances to remain at AC Milan, the France international centre-back revealed on Twitter.

The 28-year-old only joined the Serie A outfit earlier this summer and he dismissed speculation by announcing that he was keen to remain in Italy.

"Thank you very much for the messages. Truly. But I am rossonero, and I will not move from Milan. Forza Milan! With a lot of respect for Monaco," he wrote. Read the full story here.

12.32 BST Brendan Rodgers has brought in nine new faces this summer to soften the blow of losing Luis Suarez to Barcelona, and reports in the English and Spanish press speculate that Liverpool are not finished just yet.

The Metro claims that the Reds are one of a number of sides interested in signing River Plate's highly-rated Colombian defender Eder Alvarez Balanta who is available for a fee of just 4.3 million pounds.

"We value him now at £4.3million," said River Plate president Rodolfo D'Onofrio. "The most important thing is that we can get the money now. We don't want a loan or pay a small amount now. This is not possible for us."

Alternatively, Sport says Liverpool are interested in Barcelona misfit Alex Song who has been told that he can leave the Catalan club this summer as he has no place in Luis Enrique's first-team plans.

Tottenham and Marseille are also monitoring the 12.5 million euro-rated Cameroon international midfielder who is available for loan or on a permanent deal. 

12.20 BST Swansea have announced that midfielder Ki Sung-Yueng has signed a new four-year contract.

The South Korea international had been strongly linked with a move away from the Welsh club - after spending last season on loan at Sunderland -- but he insists that it was always his intention to stay at the Liberty Stadium.

"This is what I have wanted to do - my first option was always to renew with Swansea," he said. "This team has a great potential, and I am sure that we will be amazing as time goes by.

"It won't be easy, but I want to win trophies with this team. It's important to go as far as we can, as well as in the league."

12.12 BST ESPN FC's Richard Jolly takes a look at whether 32 million pound Frenchman Eliaquim Mangala is finally the centre-back that Manchester City have been craving for. Read his article here.

Mangala's reportedly ready to join Man City though the competition in defense gives him pause.
Will Eliaquim Mangala justify his expensive price tag at Manchester City?

12.02 BST Done Deal Tottenham have announced that 21-year-defender Ryan Fredericks has joined Middlesbrough on a season-long loan.

11.57 BST Borussia Dortmund are considering bringing Shinji Kagawa back to the club, according to reports in Germany. 

Kagawa has been told by Manchester United coach Louis van Gaal that he does not fit into the Dutchman's new-look Red Devils but father figure Jurgen Klopp would reportedly welcome him back with open arms. Read the full story here.

11.50 BST Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti could be on his way to Roma as part of a surprise swap deal with Miralem Pjanic.

The Italy international was in talks with the French champions regarding a contract extension but he is said to be furious after being offered a salary far below the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Ezequiel Lavezzi and Edinson Cavani.

Pjanic has been a long-term target for Laurent Blanc's side -- even appearing in the stands for March's clash against Marseille -- and Calcio Mercato says that Verratti's agent will fly to Rome to discuss a potential swap deal. 

11.40 BST Spanish journalist Guillem Balague says that Manchester United made an approach for Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso several weeks ago but were told by the European champions that he was not for sale. 

11.34 BST West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce says that the club could still bring in one high-profile player before the transfer window closes.

Allardyce has recently expressed his desire to sign a new centre-back and the Hammers have been strongly linked with Bayer Leverkusen's Philipp Wollscheid and Rennes defender Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik.

11.24 BST Arsenal are stalking the market in pursuit of a new centre-back but it appears that they could be about to let one leave.

Spanish defender Ignasi Miquel has not quite reached the heights expected of him when he signed from Barcelona in 2010 and after spending last season on loan at Leicester City, it seems that he could be set for another spell in the Championship -- this time with Norwich City. 

11.19 BST Is Ajax defender Daley Blind the solution to Manchester United's defensive woes? 

What's next for disastrous United following their embarrassing 4-0 loss to MK Dons?

11.13 BST Barcelona have opened talks with the agent of talented striker Munir El Haddadi over renewing the teenager's contract.

The 18-year-old netted the third goal in Sunday's 3-0 win over Elche to mark his La Liga debut in style and Barcelona sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta is eager to reward the youngster for stepping up to the first team.

Munir currently has a release clause of just 12 million euros and Barcelona are determined to raise this figure to 35 million in order to protect the starlet from outside suitors.

- Hunter: The emerge of Munir El Haddadi

11.03 BST Read the full story here as Bayern Munich confirm they have agreed a deal with Xabi Alonso over the Real Madrid midfielder's proposed move to the Bundesliga champions.

Real Madrid's Xabi Alonso is set to join up with Spanish coach Pep Guardiola at Bayern Munich.

10.54 BST Arsene Wenger, much to the relief of Arsenal fans, ruled out a move for former Birmingham striker Nicola Zigic on Wednesday night but the French coach says that he will not buy for the sake of it.

With Olivier Giroud sidelined until the new year with a broken tibia, Arsenal fans are shouting out for a new striker while they are still hopeful of the club signing a defender to fill the boots recently vacated by Thomas Vermaelen.

And they may well get one of their wishes, with reports in Italy claiming that the Gunners have bid in excess of 15 million euros for Borussia Dortmund centre-back Sokratis Papastathopoulos

10.44 BST Some more news from France now, where a number of Ligue 1 stars could be heading for the departure lounge.

First up is Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Clement Chantome, who is a reported three million euro target for Olympiakos after spending last season on loan at Toulouse.

Nice striker Dario Cvitanich is another player linked with a move away from France, with Palermo interested in bringing him to Italy as a replacement for the Hull City-bound Abel Hernandez.

However, it doesn't end there as Lorient defender Bruno Ecuele-Manga has acknowledged that he would like to leave the Ligue 1, with Roma, Lazio and Everton all mooted as potential destinations.

10.32 BST Arsenal are leading the race to sign wantaway Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Adrien Rabiot.

The France under-21 international refused to report to training on Monday and Tuesday -- in an attempt to force a move away from the Ligue 1 club -- and PSG coach Laurent Blanc revealed that he expects the player to leave before Monday's deadline.

Rabiot has just one year left on his existing contract but with no intention to extend it, the French champions are determined to sell him now rather than lose him on a free next summer.

GianlucaDiMarzio.com says that Arsenal have offered 15 million euros for Rabiot -- ten million less than PSG's valuation -- and the player's mother (his agent) will be in London within the next 24 hours in an attempt to settle a deal. 

PSG midfielder Adrien Rabiot could be heading to the Premier League.

10.21 BST Southampton midfielder Gaston Ramirez is in talks with Sevilla over a season-long loan deal.

The Uruguayan has struggled to fulfil his potential at St Mary's since arriving from Bologna in 2012 for a then club record 12 million pounds and he has been told by new coach Ronald Koeman that he is not part of his first-team plans.

Unai Emery's side have already completed loan deals for Liverpool forward Iago Aspas and Barcelona duo Denis Suarez and Gerard Deulofeu -- and The Daily Mail says that Ramirez is expected to be the next new face at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, with a permanent transfer in the offing next summer. 

10.12 BST Real Madrid have not ruled out the prospect of signing a striker, despite suggestions from head coach Carlo Ancelotti that their summer spending is over.

The European champions are in a good financial situation following the 59.7 million pound sale of Angel Di Maria to Manchester United and they could reinvest part of the funds in a new forward, with Karim Benzema as the club's only fit natural striker.

MARCA says that the Real Madrid coaching staff have full faith in Benzema's ability but with Jese injured, they do not want to overexert the "BBC" [Benzema, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo] or new signing James Rodriguez. 

Monaco striker Radamel Falcao has been strongly linked with a switch to the Santiago Bernabeu this summer but it is speculated that the La Liga club could now explore the market for a cheaper alternative and someone who could provide reliable back-up to Benzema.

10.00 BST Newly-promoted Crystal Palace manager Neil Warnock says that he is "optimistic" of bringing former eagle Wilfried Zaha back to Selhurst Park.

The 21-year-old forward flew the nest to join Manchester United last summer but is yet to start a league game for the Old Trafford outfit, and endured a disappointing loan spell at Cardiff City towards the end of last season.

Warnock's appointment has been met with mixed feelings by Palace supporters but a loan deal for Zaha would certainly put the 65-year-old in their good books, at least for the time being.

"Yes. I did speak to him last night," Warnock told talkSPORT. "I had half hour last night telling him why I want him to come back and I'm optimistic we are going to do it today." 

09.50 BST Fresh from signing Medhi Benatia from Roma, Bayern Munich have announced that they have reached an agreement with Real Madrid's Xabi Alonso.

Though a fee has yet to be agreed between the two clubs, the Spanish midfielder, who retired from international duty on Wednesday, will travel to Munich today to undergo his medical. 

"Xabi Alonso will provide plenty of quality. He still has at least two years of performance at the very highest level," Bayern Munich sporting director Matthias Sammer told a press conference.

09.40 BST Borussia Dortmund have not ruled out one final move on the transfer market following several injuries in midfield, which right now looks more like a patchwork rug.

"I wouldn't entirely rule that out. But I wouldn't bet on it either. We need to look at who will be out for how long. There are a few important games in the next few weeks. We can't just wait, until they are all back in eight or nine weeks. That's why we have to think about it, but right now nothing is happening," Klopp told a news conference.

Out-of-favour Manchester United playmaker Shinji Kagawa has been linked with a return to the Westfalenstadion but the club's sporting director Michael Zorc downplayed speculation.

"The transfer list is open until Monday," he told kicker. "Kagawa is a Manchester United player."

Could Shinji Kagawa make a dramatic return to Borussia Dortmund?

09.30 BST The cat's in the bag! Sunderland have agreed a deal with Inter to take Argentine playmaker Ricky Alvarez, 26, on loan, with view to a permanent transfer.

Black Cats boss Gus Poyet has been desperate to add some creativity to his side and he hopes to get the best out of his South American compatriot, who has struggled to produce his best form in Italy since moving from Velez Sarsfield in 2011.

Reports in Italy claim that Sunderland will pay one million pounds to take him on a season-long loan, while they have the option to purchase him outright for 12 million euros next summer. 

Blind ambition...

A brisk start to the day from the Sun, whose 'Blind Panic' headline could refer to pretty much anything going on at Old Trafford currently. The back page splash's focus, though, is very much on Manchester United's will-they-won't-they battle for Ajax's Daley Blind. It reveals that the Dutch masters are asking more than 20 million pounds for the World Cup star.

Presumably they are well aware that Louis van Gaal is approaching desperation time when it comes to adding more star quality to his squad, and it might just be that United are persuaded to step well beyond their 14 million pounds valuation in light of the thumping they were given by League One side MK Dons on Tuesday night.

ALL-TIME HIGHEST TRANSFER FEES

1) £85m Gareth Bale -- Tottenham to Real Madrid, Sept. 2013

2) £80m Cristiano Ronaldo -- Man Utd to R Madrid, June 2009

3) £75m Luis Suarez -- Liverpool to Barcelona, July 2014

4) £71m James Rodriguez -- Monaco to Real Madrid, July 2014

5) £59.7m Angel Di Maria -- R Madrid to Man Utd, August 2014

6) £56m Kaka -- AC Milan to Real Madrid, June 2009

The Mirror isn't quite on board with that valuation but does concur that a 'desperate' United are in for Blind as well as -- you'll never guess -- Juventus' Arturo Vidal. Are they finally going to close a deal for the Chilean? It seems as if all parties might now be onto something: Vidal is available for 30 million pounds, and there appears to be a will on all sides to get something done. It's also worth checking out their back page, actually: "Four days to save United's season." No pressure, LvG.

Carvalho to join the cavalry?

There is an interesting tale in the Telegraph too, if you'll forgive us the United focus (they do seem a rather special case at the moment). It claims that United are keen on signing William Carvalho, the Sporting Lisbon midfielder who has long been linked with Arsenal -- and that he might even be an alternative to Vidal should that one not come off.

Spurs join Welbeck chase?

Not more? Yes, there's more. Yet another long-running United-related saga appears in the Mirror, and it's no surprise that this one involves Danny Welbeck -- who has been linked hither and thither of late and, as we saw in yesterday's blog, may well be tempting striker-light Arsene Wenger.

Is there interest from elsewhere in north London though? Apparently so: intriguingly, Mauricio Pochettino is said to have watched Welbeck in person during that humbling in Milton Keynes. If he wasn't thoroughly put off by what he saw there, he might just be tempted to take a punt on the England forward as some much-needed support for Emmanuel Adebayor.

ESPN FC's Steve Nicol and Shaka Hislop debate what Danny Welbeck can bring to Arsenal if he makes that move to Emirates.

Definitely not a Manchester United story

We'll head back to the Telegraph for some succour: they are among several papers speaking of Hull's 10 million-pound move for Palermo's exciting Uruguay striker, Abel Hernandez. He had the obligatory look around the Tigers' training ground on Wednesday, and it seems as if the 24-year-old -- who scored 14 goals in his side's promotion from Serie B last season -- could soon put an end to Steve Bruce's increasingly fraught search for a forward.

Bayern looking Xabi

Finally, there is confirmation in the Guardian that Xabi Alonso, fresh from announcing his international football retirement, is on the verge of switching from Real Madrid to Bayern Munich in a slightly surprising move. He will cost around eight million pounds, and move in the opposite direction to a certain Toni Kroos, which looks like one of the bargains of the summer. Alonso was suspended for Real's Champions League final win in May but was imperious for most of the campaign. However, he now seems to have joined Angel Di Maria as a victim of the club's annual shuffling of the pack. Time will tell as to who gets the better end of this one.

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