Football Football

Arsenal in shock Essien bid


LONDON, England, August 31- Arsenal have made an audacious attempt to sign Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien on loan the DailyMail reports.

Arsene Wenger wants to add a defensive midfielder to his ranks before Friday’s transfer deadline and strides have been taken to recruit the Ghana international on a season-long loan.

Essien is down the pecking order at Stamford Bridge and it is understood Roberto Di Matteo would consider letting him leave on loan.

Whether the Blues would be willing to send a player to one of their direct rivals remains to be seen, though Chelsea did allow Yossi Benayoun move to the Emirates Stadium last season.

Meanwhile, Wenger will trust the power of love to keep Theo Walcott at Arsenal but the parties are no closer to reaching an agreement.

An uneasy truce has been struck to allow today’s transfer deadline to pass with a view to holding further talks later this year.

But Walcott’s faith in Wenger and the club has been shaken over the past few days, when he was dropped at Stoke and hit with a thinly-veiled ultimatum to sign or be sold.

He does not want to leave, but told Wenger and chief executive Ivan Gazidis he will not sign a five-year contract worth £75,000 a week. Walcott’s current deal expires in June.

Bendtner on verge of joining Juve on loan

Arsenal forward Nicklas Bendtner is on the verge of completing a loan move to Italian champions Juventus, it was reported Thursday.

ANSA news agency said the deal had yet to become official but that Juventus had “practically secured the services of Nicklas Bendtner”.

It said: “The player will be loaned with the possibility of signing permanently for a fixed sum of 5million euros.”

The report added that Bendtner was “expected in Turin later Thursday and could undergo a medical on Friday”.

Juventus’s move to bring the Danish international to Turin comes less than 24 hours after their last-ditch attempt to sign Manchester United striker Dimitar Berbatov.

Berbatov had been expected in Italy, to sign for Fiorentina, on Wednesday after agreeing terms but did not show despite the Florence club paying for flights for the Bulgarian.

Fiorentina later hit out at Juventus for late interference in the deal, which has ultimately left Berbatov on the verge of signing for Fulham.

Liverpool flop Caroll in loan move to West Ham

Liverpool striker Andy Carroll ended months of speculation over his future by joining West Ham on a season-long loan on Thursday.

Carroll’s future at Anfield has been in doubt since Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers admitted the England forward might be an awkward fit for the smooth passing style he wants the Reds to use.

West Ham and Carroll’s former club Newcastle both made approaches for the 23-year-old several weeks ago and, after Liverpool failed to secure a better offer, it is the Hammers who have won the race for his signature.

The deal is likely to bring an end to Carroll’s disappointing spell with Liverpool as West Ham have agreed an option to sign him on a permanent basis for an undisclosed fee at the end of this season.

It is a major coup for newly-promoted West Ham and boss Sam Allardyce, who briefly worked with Carroll at Newcastle, and the forward could make his debut in Saturday’s Premier League clash against Fulham at Upton Park.

“It’s great to be here at West Ham and all signed up. I just can’t wait to get started now,” Carroll told the east London club’s website.

Inter’s Maicon set for Man City move

Inter Milan said they are willing to let Maicon leave for Manchester City, as reports continued to claim the clubs are negotiating a transfer fee for the highly-rated Brazilian defender.

Maicon’s contract with the Nerazzurri will expire at the end of next season, meaning he could leave Inter for free in June 2013.

Although neither club has officially announced news of the deal, speculation is gathering pace ahead of Friday’s transfer deadline and Inter coach Andrea Stramaccioni has said he would not stand in Maicon’s way.

“It’s not a totally new situation,” Stramaccioni said according to the ANSA news agency.

“In the right-back position I have (Javier) Zanetti and Jonathan (Moreira), although Maicon has very unique qualities.

“Let’s see what happens. If he stays, then great. Otherwise, we’d be willing to say farewell to a great player.”

QPR capture Granero

Real Madrid midfielder Esteban Granero has become the latest player to sign for Queens Park Rangers during the current transfer window, the English Premier League club announced late Thursday.

The 25-year-old has agreed a four-year contract for an undisclosed fee after making 60 appearances for Los Blancos.

“He is a great player, first and foremost,” said QPR manager Mark Hughes. “You don’t play at a club like Real Madrid if you’re not,” added the Welshman, who as a player had a spell with Real’s arch-rivals Barcelona.

“He has been there from the age of nine, so this has been a huge decision for him,” said Hughes, whose side only narrowly avoided relegation last term and have yet to win in the top flight this season after two games.

“He is very well regarded there and for him to leave a club of that stature to come to us shows the belief he has in what we are trying to do.

“He has got great energy and is technically very gifted, as you would expect from a Real Madrid player.