According to reports via ESPN on Friday, Liverpool, Juventus and Manchester United were interested in signing Saint-Etienne's highly rated defender, Kurt Zouma. But now all three clubs have backed out due to the £8.5 million price tag that has been slapped on the 18-year olds head.
They went on to confirm that there is still an English club and a German club in for Zouma and other sources are positive that the English club could potentially be Chelsea, who would like to add more quality depth to that area of their squad. The fee would be considered large for a player of that age but with his qualities and potential taken in to account, the amount won't put Chelsea off.
Zouma is a physically built defender with good ability and is touted as a top future defender, he features regularly for his country France at youth level and is currently at the Under-20s FIFA World Cup with the squad. The players agent had also confirmed that his client would 'prefer England' when talking about his future.
Barcelona and Spanish International striker David Villa is wanted by both Arsenal and Tottenham. Another London club had also been interested in making a move in the shape of Europa League Champions Chelsea, but it looks like their interests is based elsewhere with Napoli's Edinson Cavani being top of the agenda.
Allegedly it is now a two horse race for the 31-year-old technically gifted forward, who is drawing near to the end of his reign with the Spanish giants. Tottenham were apaparent favourites to sign Villa but it has emerged that Arsene Wengers Arsenal are in close contention . The Emirates club have almost aqcuired the capture of Real Madrid sensation Gonzalo Higuain but Wenger wants to add even more fire power up top and is also chasing Manchester United and England forward, Wayne Rooney.
Chelsea winger Gael Kakuta has struggled to break in to the side at Stamford Bridge and after many seasons out on loan, he now looks set to stay with Dutch side Vitesse Arnhem, where he played last season on loan. According to The Mirror the French winger will be offered in a swap deal for Arnhem's highly rated youngster Marco Van Ginkel, who Chelsea have been scouting for some time.
The report on Friday claims that The Blues are ready to cut ties with Kakuta and the Dutch club are apparently keen on the deal also. 20-year-old Van Ginkel should be available for around £8 million and Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich wants to reduce that fee with Kakuta going to other way, thus gaining his club a bargain signing. Van Ginkel is wanted by a whole host of clubs and Dutch side Ajax are also looking to make an offer this week.
Kakuta signed for Chelsea in 2007 after a controversial deal saw Chelsea recieve a 12-month transfer ban, making supporters wonder whether it was at all worth the hassle as he is now on the verge of leaving The Bridge.
Barcelona and Spain play maker Alcantara Thiago is set for a pivotel main central role in the heart of Manchester United's midfield next season, and a chance to shine in the Premier League. This reason could well be the temptation that's forcing Thiago to quit Barcelona. The Daily Mail quote that the 22-year-old is 'on the verge' of signing for United.
The report on Friday goes on to state that personal terms have been agreed between the player and the club and he is expected to sign a deal worth £5 million a year. The fee with Barcelona however is yet to be agreed and will be completed over the weekend as long as their are no complications or disagreements with the terms.
Friday brings fresh reports regarding the future of two of Chelsea's midfielders, key play maker Juan Mata and returning loanee Kevin De Bruyne. Speculation had been circlulating regarding both these players seeking the exit at Stamford Bridge, with reports suggesting that new Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho was prepared to listen to offers for the Spanish International.
Meanwhile, Belgium star De Bruyne had been linked with a move to Dortmund and the club had allegedly claimed that the player wanted to join them. Today confirms that the young starlet is actually happy to return to Chelsea under Mourinho and he wants to fight for his place in the starting line up. Having had an impressive spell on loan in Holland last season, he has matured and developed in to a great prospect, mainly featuring in a centre midfield role, but he can also play as a winger. Mourinho will certainly give him his desired chance at The Bridge.