Having made the first big splash in the
transfer market with the signing of Osasuna’s Spanish under-21 right
back Cesar Azpilicueta for seven million euros, Ligue 1 champions
Marseille have taken over the helm as serial tapper-ups, with
several reports linking Les Phoceens to David Trezeguet,
Keisuke Honda, Luiz Suarez and Diego Forlan. Other not-so-wild, rather credible reports link L’OM with Auxerre’s Polish
poacher Ireneusz Jelen, Inter Milan outcast Amanto Mancini,
Bordeaux’s Alou Diarra, Lille’s highly courted defender Adil Rami, and
World cup goal poacher and perennial Bayern Munich outcast,
On the other side of the checkbook, L’OM’s
lung-busting Nigerian left back Taye Taiwo has been linked with a
move to Liverpool — a move that may suit the player and Deschamps if
the price is right.
The most dysfunctional team in France, Paris Saint-German,
have once again been touting up its financial prowess, and to a lesser
extent, its championship credentials with the signing of Monaco’s
Brazilian Nene, the capture of Mathieu Bodmer from Lyon, the possible
arrival of William Gallas, and the envy of the consistently
inconsistent Hatem Ben Arfa. Rumors continue to swirl around the
capital that its beloved PSG are interested in AZ Alkmaar’s young
Mexican defender Hector Moreno, Rennes revelation Sylvian Marveaux
and Lorient ace Kevin Gameiro. As always with the
cantankerous Parisian outfit, the best advice for fans is to sit
back, relax and watch this space, as the unpredictable is more likely
the outcome of anything touched by PSG.
Bordeaux and French
legend, Jean Tigana, is the new face at Bordeaux, replacing new France national team manager Laurent Blanc. The former Bordeaux star’s first task is keeping hold of Yoann Gourcuff from the clutches of
rivals Lyon. Along with the somewhat probable departure of Gourcuff,
midfield general Alou Diarra is all but gone to Marseille, and a
replacement for him should be top priority. While the departure of
Chamakh to Arsenal seriously hurts the attacking prowess of
Bordeaux, the arrival of Tigana should be good news to Fernando Cavenaghi
(forgotten by Blanc) and Yoan Gouffran (largely ignored/often played out
of position by Blanc), who should get more playing time under
Unlike his peers at Marseille, Lyon or PSG, Bordeaux president Jean-Louis Triaud has been
mostly quiet, claiming that the club won’t be spending big this
transfer season. Needless to say, it is looking a slightly hard task for the
new man to emulate the success of his predecessor.
of predecessors, Lyon have finally gone back to the basic formula
that made them septuplet championship winners as the buy-quality-on-the-cheap/sell-quality-high strategy is back on the table. In what
might be the biggest coup this transfer season, O’L snapped up Rennes
striker Jimmy Briand for an unbelievable sum of six million euros — about nine million less than what Lyon paid St. Etinne for
the rights of the astonishingly bad, mercurially lazy target man
Bafetimbi Gomis. Plauged by injuries for most of last year, Briand’s
arrival at Lyon will provide much needed support for workhorse, power-forward Lizandro Lopez, and fill the void left by the departed
While the €25-million bid for Gourcuff remains
on the table, Claude Puel has turned his sights on Rosenborg BK’s Ghanian
youngster, Anthony Annan, to plug in the hole left by Mathieu’s
Bodmer’s sale to PSG. A rumored four million euros should do the trick
for Annan’s Norwegian employers.
midfielder, Kim Kallstrom, has once again emerged a transfer object for
Turkish giants Galatasaray, with a reported offer of five million
euros. His fellow midfield compatriot, Ederson, who has been closely
linked with AC Milan and Napoli in the past, is set to stay at Lyon
for at least another season.
Along with Marseille,
Lille’s Adil Rami is coveted at the Stade de Gerland, with strong
talks between both clubs already past its infancy. A figure around
€13 million has been suggested as Lille’s asking price, as
Lyon are set to ship Boumsong away to Greece to be reunited with
ex-teammate Sidney Govou.
Supporters of Lille have
reason to be worried, as the main nucleus of the team appears to be
headed out the door. Along with Adil Rami’s exodus to Lyon or
Marseille, influential, yet highly underrated attacking midfielder
Ludovic Obraniak, is set to depart for Auxerre. Lille have
continuously rejected bids for playmaker Eden Hazard — the affection
of Lyon amongst others. In addition, winger Gervinho fancies some time in
England, Liverpool to be exact.
Fenerbahce are set to swoop
for Ghanaian striker, Asamoah Gyan — offering Rennes €12 million. Monaco are keeping a close
eye on Gyan’s international teammate, Andre Ayew, who currently sits on the book
in the reserves at Marseille.
Arsene Wenger’s first dibs on
French talent shows no trickling down as the former Monaco manager
has snapped up Lorient’s strong center back Laurent Koscielny for
about €10 million.
Following in Koscielny footsteps will
probably be the effervescent, bustling, center forward Kevin Gameiro.
The 23 year old looks set to depart Lorient. Valencia appears to be at the front of the line, as the Spanish outfit look for a Ligue 1 buddy
for former Montpellier playmaker, Tino Costa, who joined Los Che
in a €6-million deal earlier in the summer.
Duverne, the guy who famously chucked his credentials onto the field
at France’s world cup training camp, has signed on with newly promoted side, Arles
Avignon, as first-team fitness coach.