The transfer window exploded into life this week, with an injection of oil money via Paris that could precipitate a flurry of activity. Paris Saint-Germain paid £51.3m and something like €15m a year in wages for Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, although the big Swede is yet to finalise a contract with the French side, and once they are signed and sealed it is expected Milan will do a bit of shopping of their own in Manchester.
The online betting rags have all been waiting for news of Robin Van Persie and his potential move away from North London, but it is fairly plain city must buy before they can sell in order to stand even an outside chance of complying with financial fair play at any point. They’ve already agreed a deal for Adebayor to move to Tottenham, which won’t generate a lot in terms of the fee but will take £170k a week off the wage bill, and there are rumours surround three City frontmen and a move to Italy.
SkyBet currently make Milan favourite to sign Carlos Tevez (6/4), Edin Dzeko (8/13) and Mario Balotelli (3/1). View more prices at additional books here; I’d personally be quite surprised if the Italian striker were to leave. It can be hard to read Roberto Mancini at times, but assuming he still feels the same way about Carlos Tevez and his problems in Munich you’d expect him to favour getting rid of either the Argentinian or Dzeko, who fell out of favour as the title race intensified. If Mancini is honest he’d probably admit he’d like to keep Tevez the player, but it is the person that comes with that he cannot abide.
Once those deals are underway we can expect a bid in the region of £15m-20m for RVP from City to be accepted, as Arsenal have clearly made plans for the departure of their captain and City will no doubt represent the best return on their initial investment of around £3m, another incredible testament to the great influence Arsene Wenger has had on the player’s career. PaddyPower still make City strong favourites to buy RVY (1/1), although you can get a decent price (4/1) with SkyBet on them doing a deal for Napoli striker Edinson Cavani, a more expensive, but longer-term buy.
Whether Arsenal will spend on the back of that is debatable, but several managers have talked about bringing in ‘two or three’ players. Brendan Rodgers looks to have secured the signing of Fabio Borini from Roma for a fee in the region of £11m, but the Liverpool boss has allowed speculation to rise around the future of Andy Carroll, and the striker has been linked with a few teams, either on loan or to buy. With Scott Sinclair and Clint Dempsey also linked to the team in some of the less discerning newspapers, the big Geordie will be wondering what his future holds after a decent Euro 2012.
It remains a matter of debate as to whether the striker is even available, but there are teams who he would suit should Liverpool decide to cut their losses and move on from the purchase altogether. The front runners with SkyBet are Newcastle (1/1), West Ham (4/1) and AC Milan (9/1), but only one of those sides has the ability to buy the striker outright and the kind of creative swap deals we used to see have become less common. Over the next few weeks we can expect more signings at Chelsea and Manchester City, but you can also expect the likes of Newcastle, Everton and Sunderland begin to move as they survey the available talent.