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Thread: Football Transfer Centre

Wednesday December 18 Entering the goalscorer markets could be the way to secure some betting value for Wednesday's Captial One

  1. #21
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    Wednesday December 18

    Entering the goalscorer markets could be the way to secure some betting value for Wednesday's Captial One Cup quarter-finals.

    Rich Lynn: 'Nick, I hope for your sake he doesn't leave in January!!! At least you'll get 5 months wear out of your Suarez shirt then before you burn it. Does it come with a free t-shirt?'

    Rob: 'Fair points from Andrew there, the one that has surprised me is Coleman, he has come on an absolute bundle in the last 18 months. And Nick, save your money or alternatively get a Real shirt with Suarez 10 on it, they're already printing them.'

    Nick Watson writes: 'Nice to see Borini score last night and provide an assist. Could he be the next Suarez?? It is also good to see the club are now pressing ahead with contractual negotiations with Suarez, and on current form he is worth every penny of a 200,000 a week contract. If nothing else it would greatly strengthen our negotiating position should other clubs want to buy him and let's face it, as long as he is wearing the number 7 shirt at anfield the Suarez replica shirts will be selling like hot cakes, I know I am going to buy myself one for Christmas anyway '

    Andrew Banks: 'On full-backs I don't think either Johnson or Walker are awful, but neither are fantastic & are both probably better at attacking than defending. Walker is so rash but luckily his speed lets him catch up with his mistakes most of the time. For me the best RBs in the league are Zabaleta, Sagna, Rafael & Coleman.'

    Andrew Banks: 'How on earth did Sunderland manage to score an equaliser in the 88th minute with only their second shot on target? Although considering the Chelsea team should have been fresher in ET, Sunderland were the only team going for it after 90 mins. An easy win for City's 2nd XI showed the depth of talent in their squad (although I hear Aguero could be out for 8 weeks). For tonight's game I reckon Spurs will go through as players will want to prove themselves to new manager & West Ham look dire at the minute. Hopefully it goes to ET and tires out their boys for Saturday's game. As for United, we have a very good record against Stoke and I'd like to see that continue. It'd be good to get an early goal to calm down the Stoke support and take pressure off the team. Hopefully Welbeck gets another game up top with Fletcher possibly making his first start in a year!'

    Rob Lynn: 'Morning Matt, nice start from Paul there, obviously missed out on the TC season of goodwill honourably started by John yesterday. To confirm, I assume that as Young Flanagan scored on Sunday and contributed to a clean sheet, he's now world class? Dear me. Naughton I'll give you, awful, as bad as Johnson but if you think Walker is poor player then you can't watch Spurs games.'

    Noel Madden: 'Paul; I have a feeling Ashley Cole might make you eat those words before the season is out. A bit rich from a fan of the defensive rock that is Glen Johnson.'

    Tim writes: 'Paul, I take it you've never analysed Jenkinson's play because if you did you would realise he is one of the best up and coming right backs in the country. Always does the simple thing when under pressure, supports the attacks down the right feeding the midfield/attacking players and is often the last covering defender coming round the back when opposing teams are attacking down opposite flank. At his age there is not a better right back in the league and in 2 years time he will be Arsenal and possibly England's first choice right back.'

    Brad Smith writes: 'Paul - Good morning to you as well. Remember last time you got all carried away and started making wild predictions and declaring everyone bar Liverpool players awful? It didn't end well. Maybe give it a couple of months before reverting back to that?'

    Paul Cressy writes: 'Morning Matt, Having watched atrocious fullbacks at Spurs on Sunday and obviously Jenkinson at Arsenal as one of the poorest full backs in Premier League history, I was astounded to see that Ashley Cole has finally 'gone'! Such a shame to see one of the once best left backs in the world reduced to a shimmering wreck. His pace, defensive quality and tactical awareness, all disappeared, time to hang up the boots Ash!!!'

    Plenty of transfer rumours in this morning's Paper Talk, including Marco Reus being linked with Man United and Juan Mata to PSG.

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    Thursday December 19

    Tony Cannon is having a ball: 'As a City fan there is no way I can predict how our team will do. It's not in our DNA. I will say one thing and that is many are talking about Arsenal, United and others if they buy a player. No one has mentioned what will happen if City buy a player (or two). With that thought, have a Merry Christmas.'
    Kilmarnock manager Allan Johnston expects to have a number of players on trial in the coming weeks.

    Greetings of the season to Simon: 'With all the arguing and talk back and forth over the course of the year, I just want to take a moment to thank all the EPL fans for making this league the best league in the world. There are many good teams all fighting for four spots and that is what making this fun. Rather you are Arsenal, Chelsea, Spurs, Man Utd, Man City, Eveton, or Liverpool fan like myself, at the end of the day, we all should be grateful to enjoy watching good football. Happy Holiday and Merry Christmas everyone!'

    Our betting tips for Saturday's Premier League matches are now available and you can back them with Sky Bet.

    Here are the details on Andres Iniesta extending his Barcelona contract.

    A kind message from John: 'Sorry I forgot to wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy New Year. In this season of goodwill I wish everybody's teams a good festive period (unless you are playing mine). I look forward to the transfer window with great interest as I think that this might just be the most crucial one ever. Take care everybody and have fun.'

    John provides his predictions: 'Man City will do it for me, but not by much I can see Arsenal and Chelsea pushing them close. Player of the year Suarez for me now that Aguero is out for a month. Champions league I will go for Real Madrid. Just a note a Brad Smith has been promoted to the Liverpool first-team squad!'

    The Birmingham Mail report: 'West Brom's managerial search remains ongoing after they distanced themselves from claims they had made an approach for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer - but they continue to keep an eye on the growing tension between Malky Mackay and Cardiff City's owners.'

    The Journal report: 'It is understood Manchester United's Wilfried Zaha has not been included on a list of potential January signings for Newcastle.'

    We will have a full story on this but the breaking news from Spain is Andres Iniesta has extended his Barcelona contract.
    Sheffield Wednesday defender Glenn Loovens is keen to extend his stay at Hillsborough.
    Swansea forward Michu hopes the club will make a loan move for Liverpool striker Iago Aspas during the January transfer window.

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    Friday December 20

    Richard Marsden: 'According to Cadena Ser (Spain's premier radio network) Xabi Alonso has decided not to extend his contract with Real Madrid. He's coming home to play with Luis et al.'

    Rich: 'Gareth Bale was contracted to Spurs until 2017. Utterly irrelevant. As for Rodgers, you seriously are welcome to him. That programme with the envelopes etc was the most embarrassing thing I've ever seen football wise. Ps LS is quite obviously not the best player in the world right now. Only Messi is injured. Ronaldo and Bale aren't. Totally agree Brad, as we've said many times, our clubs are better than allowing the likes of Suarez to drag them through the mud. Wearing the captain's armband just summed them up really. Utterly desperate.'

    Rob Lynn: 'Congrats to Liverpool on the Suarez contract. It means you'll get a price for him now and more importantly means my 16/1 on him for the GB is now a cert, wallop. And Ralph, nice stat research there, I always appreciate that. If I'm honest, I don't think the next Liverpool manager that will win the league has been born yet, but I've been wrong before. Lastly, can't believe we haven't taken Clint Dempsey ourselves. The greatest frame maker in EPL history that never hits a foot strike in the trash can and can also score head kicks when on the end of high evolution centres. He loves illegal roughage as well and I think we need that bite at the moment.'

    Brad: 'Simon - I've never wanted him. Liverpool are welcome to him.'

    Simon Wan: 'Response to Brad 14:20: As a Liverpool fan, I think the extension means a big January Transfer window for us (quality players coming in). However, I do agree about the release clause. Usually release clause is a bit more than the market value of the player, so let me ask you Brad, or any other non Liverpool fans: if the release clause is 65 million, do you want your club to get him?'

    Brad Smith: 'Two words: Release clause. Merry Xmas everyone.'

    Seun Odubanjo writes: 'As a Chelsea fan I believe the issue is kind of obvious, 1) They need a striker that scores, we can continue to depend on the midfield because there will be many games when they dont score. So a loan deal for Falcao is ideal being that he would be able to play in CL, let Ba and Eto go I still think Torres has something to offer. 2) We need a real DM playing Lampard there is pointless he doesnt have the legs or strength for it, Mikels time has come to an end. We need a DM that is solid and athletic. 3) Chelsea really don't have a real winger, Hazard, Mata , Schurrle , Oscar and Willian all come in, none of them keep to the touchline. Getting Salah might not be a bad idea or even Adam Johnson, a very good winger will change the way Chelsea play. If these things are not taken care of soon, Chelsea will not have a productive season.'
    Fulham manager Rene Meulensteen confirmed this afternoon that former striker Clint Dempsey had undergone a medical at the club and is set to return on loan.

    Richard Marsden: 'Great news that Suarez has signed a new long term contract for the Reds, like an early Christmas present. Loving the Spurs tetchiness over BR's comments, I'm sure they would rather have him than AVB, Tim Sherwood or even Glen Fiddich, but just couldn't bring themselves to admit it. Merry Christmas to all at TC Towers and as Santa says Ho Ho Hotspurs.'

    John Egan: 'Liverpool now have Suarez until at least summer, these were rather short negotiations. So to round it up we have a manager, still have our star player and could (fingers crossed) be top of the league on Christmas day. No wonder spurs fans are sniping so often. How they would swap places if they could.'

    Ralph Gomez comments: 'Liverpool are short at least 4 players in the first team and a few squad players from becoming a 'contender' for the the top spot. However, when we get the 4th spot (very hopeful for it to be this season) we may come closer to bridging the first team talent area. If that happens, I would not rule out BR being the manager when we win the title and i believe that BR will be the manager for quite a number of years.'

    Liverpool fan Neil Danks says: 'Noel - the fact that the last 9 league games without Suarez were P9 W6 D2 L1 shows our team is pretty strong. In my opinion Suarez is the best player in the world on current form, why can't we push for the title. Put it this way if Spurs suddenly signed Ronaldo and he scored 25-30 goals for you between now and the end of the season, wouldn't you feel the title was possible?'

  4. #24
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    Our Sporting Life Accumulator has an 18/1 selection for Sunday's bumper football programme and Going for Goals also returns.

    Related ContentFootball Transfer CentreThe latest football newsFollow us on TwitterFree 5 bet every weekFree 30 matched bet
    The Sporting Life Accumulator features the selections of our top tipping team from across the various leagues and you can back the picks every week with Sky Bet.

    We also have our Going for Goals selection available again, which is aiming to earn you big profits.

    Here's our latest offerings:


    Liverpool, Leicester, Cheltenham & Albion all to win at 18/1 with Sky Bet.

    Liverpool to beat Chelsea (Barclays Premier League)

    Liverpool may well have been knocked off top spot on Boxing Day but their performance in a 2-1 defeat at favourites Manchester City underlined why they are now genuine title candidates while Chelsea continue to look rather uninspiring.

    Leicester to beat Bolton (Sky Bet Championship)

    Leicester returned to the summit with a hard-fought win over Reading on Boxing Day and shouldn't have too many problems brushing aside an extremely inconsistent Bolton side.

    Cheltenham to beat Mansfield (Sky Bet League 2)

    The Robins have won three in four while the Stags haven't tasted victory in 13.

    Albion to beat Queen's Park (Scottish League Two)

    Rovers have won their last five at home and should be too good for bottom club Queen's Park who have won just once all season.


    Both teams to score in Doncaster v Millwall, Barnsley v Derby, Sheffield United v Tranmere and Portsmouth v Northampton at 14.22/1 with Sky Bet.

    St Johnstone v Dundee United

    Only Celtic have out scored Dundee United in the Scottish Premiership this season although they did concede four times last time out against St Mirren.

    Doncaster v Millwall

    These two sides have the worst defences in the Sky Bet Championship - there's nothing more to say.

    Barnsley v Derby

    There's little doubt free-scoring Derby will find the net at struggling Barnsley but the hosts will be desperate to get something from the game as they seek to boost their survival hopes.

    Sheffield United v Tranmere

    Tranmere have shipped 40 goals in 22 league games so far but they'll fancy their chances of at least finding the net themselves against fellow strugglers Sheffield United this weekend.

    Portsmouth v Northampton

    Portsmouth's leaky defence are always prone to conceding while their opponents are hardly tight at the back either.

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    Thursday January 2

    Fulham have decided to recall defender Dan Burn from his loan stay with Birmingham.
    Chelsea look set to dash Kevin De Bruyne's hopes of leaving Stamford Bridge on a permanent basis.

    Sky Bet's Andy Lee has an update on the firm's Transfer Specials: 'We have laid some bets on Joleon Lescott's next club. Besiktas and Tottenham are the front-runners; he is 11/8 to move to Spurs and 7/2 to move to the Turkish team. Juan Mata's next club has also been a source of speculation; we've made him 12/1 to Manchester United and 7/2 to PSG. There are also some newly released specials for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as the new Cardiff manager, as well as the next Torquay manager after their announcement earlier today.'
    Jermaine Jones is set to leave Schalke this month after requesting not to travel to a mid-season training camp.
    Oussama Assaidi has stressed he is keeping an open mind about his future as his eye-catching form for Stoke continues.

    Chris writes: 'Happy new year to all. Unlike Jay, I cannot see Mata heading for Anfield. Whilst he is undoubtedly a great player, I just do not think that he is what Liverpool need at present. They need a bit more bite and mobility in midfield and acquired players should also be confident on the ball in tight situations. That does not sound like him. It will be interesting to see what United do during the window. They could go for Mata and he would be a good fit too.'

    A manager has gone in Sky Bet League 2. Torquay boss Alan Knill departs.

    The same paper say: 'Harry Redknapp wants to sign a striker to ease the pressure on Charlie Austin, with the QPR boss interested in Carlton Cole.'

    The London Evening Standard report Paris Saint-Germain want to capitalise on Juan Mata's unhappiness at Chelsea by making another bid to sign him this month.

    Here is the full story on new Cardiff manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

    The expected tweet from Cardiff: 'BREAKING: @CardiffCityFC are delighted to confirm the arrival of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as first team manager.' More on that big news to follow.
    Everton defender John Heitinga has turned down a switch to West Ham.

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    Friday January 3

    For the second transfer window running, Sky Bet are seeing money for Arsenal to sign Karim Benzema from Real Madrid. The Leeds-based firm are 2/1 from 4/1 and he has been backed as high as 8/1 so far this month.

    Rob Lynn: 'James.. Sterling will be going nowhere, it's all pointless speculation. On current form I can't think of a better winger in Europe.'

    David Bradley: 'Behave I shall Paul, seriously guys I know you follow Liverpool but take off the red tinted glasses for a sec. I'm a United fan and I can admit that our donkeys like Cleverley and Anderson etc are pure rubbish. Mata was player of the season last year pure quality, its only because Jose is making a point that he is in and out of the team. What has Henderson done? name a game where he was outstanding? He played well in the spurs game after they went down to 10men? I can't think of any others. Would any non Liverpool fans take Henderson to their club over Mata? I would be really surprised...'

    James O'Sullivan says: ' Hi, I am very surprised to hear Raheem Sterling could be loaned out given his recent performances. Still could be an influential player in Liverpool's season in my view. Has nothing to gain at being on loan with Swansea.'

    Noel Madden: 'Better say as much as you can between now and 8th of February Brad. I can see a very quiet spell from you between that and April 8th, similar to yourself imposed exile early last March.'

    Rich Lynn: 'Gordon - you realise that if Chelsea give their best player to a team around them in the league that could affect where they finish right? And Paul, there are posts on here that are a bit of fun, but I think you actually believe that Henderson is better than Mata. He isn't. Funny one though if you didn't mean it.'

    Rob Lynn: 'I actually agree with you Mr. Cressy, Henderson is far better than Mata, I mean, just look at what they've won. All Mata has is a CL, EL, FAC, WC and EC compared to Henderson's League Cup and Sunderland YPOY.'

    Paul Cressy writes,' Happy New Year Matt, and David Bradley behave yourself - Mata better than Henderson (who has actually improved greatly this season)? I think not.'

    Gordon: 'My comments were crystal clear in that Chelsea's only concern is where they finish. Obviously they want to win the PL but if not finish as high as possible and qualify for next season's CL. It will be of absolutely no concern to them who are the other three qualifying teams.'
    Stoke are in talks to sign midfielder Stephen Ireland permanently during the January transfer window.

    Paul O'Brien: 'When you look at the age and depth of squad Moyes inherited from Fergie it was obviously a rebuilding effort was going to be needed. I think Fergie new this and decided it was the right time to retire and allow the next generation to have to 2-4 years required to rebuild the team. Fergie rebuild united several times over his 26 years and wasn't at all successful at the beginning Give Moyes a chance.'

    Brad: 'Gordon - im confused. Are Spurs and United rivals or not? You contradict yourself. Rivals that they arent worried about? Like say, QPR?'

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    Monday January 6

    St Johnstone tweet: 'Tommy Wright reveals that Sanel Jahic hasn't been kept on beyond the expiry of his short-term contract.'

    Cheltenham tweet: 'Breaking News > Midfielder Russell Penn has this morning left the club & completed a transfer to @yorkcityfc'

    Estadio Deportivo in Spain report Manchester United have ended their interest in Sevilla full-back Alberto Moreno but Real Madrid are in the race.
    Leicester boss Nigel Pearson has hinted he will look to sign Kevin Phillips, who is available on a free transfer.
    Hull midfielder Robert Koren says there is no rush to enter into discussions regarding a contract extension.

    Rob Lynn writes: 'The problem Man U have is that they have the worst midfield they've had in 30 years. SAF knew this and that's why he went when he did to make his legacy look even more phenomenal. The reliance on Januzaj in his first season is ridiculous, Valencia is playing reasonably well but apart from that they are dreadful. Without Rooney and RVP for a considerable length of time, they would be a bottom half club without a doubt. I feel for Moyes because there's not much anyone could do with this squad. They had a free kick with about 20 minutes left yesterday just outside the box in a central position and Cleverley took it, says it all really.'

    Bolton tweet: 'Gary Fraser has returned to #BWFC after his loan spell with Partick Thistle came to an end. He made four appearances.'

    Portsmouth tweet: 'John Sullivan has joined Conference high-flyers Cambridge on loan for the rest of the season #pompey'

    Sandesh writes: 'I don't think United deserved to lose yesterday's match, and I don't think we would have lost it if not for the sending off - but we didn't deserve to win it either. I don't mind losing games as long as we give it a go but the team lacks tempo going forward and looks completely bereft of ideas in the final third. We have a pedestrian midfield, wingers who look completely lost and our only two players who can make things happen out injured. Five defeats at Old Trafford is simply not good enough. As far as transfers are concerned, we need a couple of midfielders urgently but I am not sure if anyone will be available this time of the year. Even if we do try to sign some of our long term targets we will end up overpaying for them like we did with Fellaini. So I think our best bet would be to do a Henrik Larsson like loan deal for an experienced, energetic midfielder if there are any available and maybe sign Coentrao on loan from Madrid. David Moyes is under a lot of pressure but I think he needs to be given proper backing by the owners in the summer and at least until the end of the year to turn things around.'

    Sky Bet's Zach Amin brings us an update from the firm's Sky Bet's Transfer Specials: 'Tom Ince has been the only significant mover over the last 24 hours, being backed in heavily from 16/1 to 5/2 to join previous outsiders and now seconds favourites Everton.'
    Comments from David Moyes on the January transfer window.
    New Cardiff boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looks set to make two fellow Norwegians his first signings for the club.

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    Tuesday January 7

    Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand could be out for up to two weeks with a knee injury.

    Many thanks to Simon Fazakerley: 'Well said Darren Kelly (15:50). As a Liverpool supporter I am neither a fan of Fergie or Moyes, however look at their legacies at their respective clubs and there isn't a lot between the squads they've left behind for their successors. Yes Fergie won the league with the same squad, but I'd argue that was largely down to a lack of competition and RVP's goals (which Moyes hasn't enjoyed) in addition to the 'Fergie factor' (support of the crowd/FA, and fear from refs/opposition managers). Moyes may be a small fish, but Fergie didn't exactly leave him a quality pond!'

    Hello to Tony F: 'Hello Dave and just a reply to clarify to Richard (1.30) '... Looking at this as a neutral' is what I said so I'm not banging the drum for Man U but their reserves lost to Swansea reserves; so why should it matter to United; the Cup hasn't been the priority for the top division clubs ever since in 1999-2000 United sat it out so they could compete in the World Club Championship. In 2005 they fielded the reserves against Exeter from memory and many other sides have done the same and continue to do so as they juggle the need to be competitive in not just the league; fact. In reply to Gordon at 12.25 I'm not advocating that United stick with Moyes and perhaps he'll be their new Frank O'Farrell and last no more than 18 months but my point was that since Moyes was recommended by SAF as his successor I'd bet that Fergie won't want him to fail and will try his damnest to keep him in the job regardless of whether Moyes is being watching from the directors' box or not - yes we all know the game has moved on in the past forty years and it's more ruthless but I (as a neutral) don't get the impression that United will act to remove him within the next eighteen months, by which time he will have made his mark in a positive way.'

    John Parry says: 'What your missing Jay, is Eto should have been on the pitch to A: score his goal & B: Give away a penalty, however the foul on Suarez is surely an indirect free kick? (do these even apply for obstruction ).... as for Walcott.... will it make a difference to England already not having a chance of getting out of the group? More excuses come July when the players are sunning themselves in Barbados having been knocked out! Interesting to see my local Sunderand team only selling about 27000 tickets for tonights SEMI FINAL against MANCHESTER UNITED, I know times are hard in the North East but come on !'

    Hello to Darren Kelly: 'With all the talk of Moyes being responsible for United's decline, is it fair to say that SAF should bear some of the responsibility? He watched the side decline in Midfield arguably since Keane left, with no real recruits apart from Michael Carrick. Cleverly looks out of his depth in big games with Anderson/Jones not up to it in the centre of the field. Giggs looks past it also. Alex worked miracles with that midfield, Moyes needs time to get the players in. The only issue is now clubs know they are desperate and they will pay an increased premium for the quality they need this January. It's a mixture of Moyes/SAF & Woodward as we will never know the influence of the Glazers. Gill and SAF would have been decisive in this window, united fans better hope that Woodward and Moyes do the same.'

    Thanks to Gordon Mays: 'Stuart Merry (15.15) Great post !!! - a voice of reason at last !!! - Rich Lynn thought we would return from Australia without losing a Test.'

    Hull manager Steve Bruce has secured striker Sone Aluko on a new contract.

    Hello to Stuart Merry: 'Happy New Year all! As a Manchester United and England cricket fan, watching both teams is parallel. Both have had a long period of success with players that have now finished / coming to the end. Should still beat weaker teams but will struggle against similar teams and get beat by the better ones. These things go in cycles and I feel it's going to be a good few years before both teams are competing against the cream of the crop again.'
    Manuel Pellegrini says there is no urgency for signings at Manchester City as he prepares to welcome back Sergio Aguero. He said: 'It is not our first concern and we are not in a hurry to make a decision. We are just seeing two or three things but nothing important.'
    I'm off for the day now but I'm handing over to Dave John, who will steer the ship home until midnight. I've forwarded him any unpublished emails while you can get in touch with him directly at [email protected].

    Rob Lynn writes: 'I sympathise with Walcott, I know what a long term injury is like so I won't mock. However, it is not England's loss. In his 30 odd caps he has had one good game (Croatia away). Chris Waddle summed him up perfectly when he said he doesn't seem to learn anything which is astonishing under such a great coach. I don't think anyone is particularly great in that position but it would seem logical to me to play Walker and Townsend as they know each other's game and are both frightfully quick. And Ken, West Ham's injury list is far less than Arsenal's and Spurs for that matter, they just have a dreadful squad, largely due to doing their transfer fund on one injured player.'
    Juventus insist Paul Pogba and Andrea Pirlo, who have both been linked with moves to the Premier League, are not for sale. The club's general director Giuseppe Marotta said: 'At this time there is no possibility of selling Pirlo and Pogba even if Pirlo will soon be out of contract. I can say, however, that we have a great rapport with the player (Pirlo) and that his contract will be extended.'

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    Wednesday January 8

    MK Dons tweet: 'BREAKING! MK Dons can confirm defender Jon Otsemobor has today left the Football Club by mutual consent.'

    Brighton now tweet: '#BHAFC have completed the signing of Jonathan Obika from @SpursOfficial on a one-month loan deal. The 23-year-old is available for Saturday.'
    Brighton have revealed they have rejected a transfer request from Sunderland target Liam Bridcutt.

    Connor Smith has joined Gillingham on loan from Watford for the rest of the season.

    Ross County have confirmed the signing of Filip Kiss on loan from Cardiff.

    Blackburn's Alan Judge has joined Sky Bet League One leaders Brentford on loan for the remainder of the season.
    Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti says there will be no transfers in or out of the club during the January transfer window amid reported interest from England in fringe players such as Fabio Coentrao and Alvaro Morata.

    Danny Williams and Carl Tremarco have both signed two-year contract extensions with Inverness.
    Luciano Becchio is another player who is understood to be keen for a fresh start away from Norwich, with former club Leeds one potential destination while Sky Bet Championship rivals Blackburn and Derby are also said to be monitoring the situation

    Cardiff City have confirmed the signing of Magnus Wolff Eikrem from Heerenveen.
    Norwich have denied reports Wes Hoolahan has handed in a transfer request amid interest from Aston Villa.
    If you fancy a punt, then our Craig Chisnall has previewed this weekend's action in the Sky Bet Leagues and is keen on Derby to beat Leicester on Friday.

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    Thursday Janury 9

    Rich: 'Again, OPTA did not produce these tables.'

    Good afternoon to Alan Anderson, who says: 'Hello Matthew and everyone and just a couple of quick points. Firstly, the OPTA stats are the benchmark used throughout the game. I can understand that some folk have a distrust of anything to do with's all mathematics and analysis after all; surely the keeper should just hoof the ball up to the big number 9. But secondly I understand from noises over here on the continent that Enrique Flores, ex-Atletico Madrid coach, is set to be unveiled as new Baggies boss.' I do believe he is the current market leader at 7/2 with Sky Bet.

    Gordon Mays has emailed: 'Rich & Rob (15.20) Rich - the article clearly says that 'the Football Observatory of the International Centre for Sports Studies in Switzerland used official Opta stats to analyse the performance of every player in the top five European Leagues'. Rob - Gerrard is listed but not the other two. I personally think theses stats are absolute garbage and meaningless but as soon as I threw certain Spurs players into the mix you rose majestically to take the bait. You continually take swipes at players from other clubs in general, Liverpool & Arsenal in particular, but the old heckles soon go up when the boot is on the other foot. Isn't Adebayor playing well!'

    Brad Smith: 'I think you got a couple of major bites there Gordon, I could feel the heat from their keyboards.... Keep up the good work.'

    Rob Lynn has also responded to Gordon, offering: 'Gordon, are you saying Messi, Yaya and Kompany aren't listed on there? If so, I suggest you take that list with a pinch of salt. Have you been selective again with your omissions? Henderson, Gerrard, Sturridge? Are they there? Opta is often misleading, we've had this conversation before about players getting credited with assists for a 5 yard square pass to the likes of Ronaldo who then belt it in from 30 yards.'

    Good afternoon everyone, not least Rich Lynn, who has this to say: 'Gordon, firstly the article you refer to is nothing whatsoever to do with Opta. Secondly, it is impossible for Sandro and Kaboul to be in there as they have been injured. Hence no Messi or Kompany. And quite obviously, Soldado is not in the top 10 strikers in world football this season. Another great post. And saying that Aaron Ramsey is a better defensive midfielder by far than Yaya Toure pretty much sums up these so called stats.'
    My time in the 'chair' is over now as I've been replaced, less ruthlessly than the previous change, by Matt Brocklebank. Get in touch with him at [email protected].

    Sunderland midfielder Cabral has joined Genoa on loan until the end of the season.

    Gordon Mays writes: 'The Sun has today published a list of the best 50 players in Europe excluding goalkeepers with the format being the top 10 in five categories ie Strikers, Offensive Midfielders, Defensive Midfielders, Centre Backs & Full Backs. There is no mention of Messi, Yaya Toure or Kompany but Rooney, Ramsey & Lovren are all included. However, I suppose the real shocks are in the omissions of Sandro, Kaboul & Soldado. Apparently the lists were provided from the official Opta stats who analyse every performance of every player in the top five European leagues ie England, Germany, Spain, Italy & France.'
    Stuart Gray hoping to get Sheffield Wednesday manager's job with an appointment imminent. He told Sky Sports News: 'I'm very optimistic. I have got confidence in me doing the job and the chairman's got confidence in me doing the job as well, which is a bonus as such, but the most important thing, I think, is that the players have responded.'

    Noel Madden writes: 'Even more amusingly the December Manager of the month award nominees should probably also include AVB/Sherwood who lost just one of the 7 premier league games in the month.'
    Tony Pulis has praised Tottenham for appointing a young British boss in Tim Sherwood but questioned whether his predecessor Andre Villas-Boas had been undermined in transfer dealings last summer. He said: 'You can spend 200million but if it isn't on the players that you think are necessary for your team to be successful, you might struggle a little bit.'

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