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Thursday’s gossip column TRANSFER GOSSIP

3 April 2013 Last updated at 23:39

Thursday’s gossip column

TRANSFER GOSSIP

Brendan Rodgers is ready to offer striker Andy Carroll, 24, an unlikely Anfield lifeline – but only if the England international accepts a role as an impact substitute. Carroll has spent the season on loan at West Ham, who could yet make a permanent move for the player.

Andy CarrollAndy Carroll has scored two goals in nine senior appearances for England – against Ghana and Sweden

Full story: Daily Mirror 

Tottenham are plotting a major summer reshuffle of their striking department and have put Aston Villa’s £15m goalscorer Christian Benteke, 22, at the top of their wanted list.

Full story: Daily Star

Manchester United Manchester United are tracking the progress of Benfica’s 24-year-old former Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic.

Full story: talkSPORT 

Norwich manager Chris Hughton is plotting another raid on his old club Birmingham – this time for 19-year-old winger Nathan Redmond.

Full story: Daily Mirror 

OTHER GOSSIP

Former Leeds United boss Neil Warnock says he wants Mark Hughes to succeed him at Elland Road so he can “destroy another team of mine”. Hughes, 49, took over at QPR after Warnock, 64, was sacked in January 2012.

Full story: talkSPORT 

Blackpool are facing their fifth managerial change of the season after it emerged that current boss Paul Ince, 45, is a shock candidate to replace under-pressure Nigel Pearson at Leicester.

Full story: Daily Mirror 

Nemanja VidicNemanja Vidic is closing in on his fifth Premier League title since joining Manchester United in 2006

Manchester United captain Nemanja Vidic, 31, will sever all lines of communication with fellow Serbian players and friends Aleksander Kolarov, 27, and Matija Nastasic, 20, of Manchester City ahead of Monday’s derby at Old Trafford.

Full story: Independent 

Meanwhile, Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany, 26, says the off-the-pace defending champions must try and salvage some pride by beating United in their own backyard.

Full story: Daily Mirror 

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has suggested striker Robin van Persie, 29, is suffering the effects of “the intensity of his first season” with the Premier League leaders.

Full story: Daily Mirror 

The pressure on the Premier League to oversee a reduction in ticket prices has intensified after a supporters collective representing a dozen influential fan groups urged chief executive Richard Scudamore to consider a range of cost cutting initiatives.

Full story: the Times (subscription required) 

Chelsea interim boss Rafael Benitez, 52, says he thought it was an April Fools joke when he learnt Ray Wilkins had blamed him for the injury suffered by Ashley Cole against Manchester United. “I have a degree in sports science from Spain, have spoken to many people about injuries. It’s the first time I ever heard anything like this. First of April,” said the Spaniard.

Full story: Daily Telegraph 

GLOBAL GOSSIP (sourced by BBC Monitoring)

Real Madrid are facing an investigation by the European Commission over allegations it received illegal state funds in a property deal it struck with Madrid City Council for land around the Bernabeu stadium.

Full story: El Pais 

Kevin de BruyneKevin de Bruyne has yet to make his senior competitive debut for Chelsea since joining from Genk in January 2012

Chelsea’s Belgian midfielder Kevin de Bruyne, 21, who is currently on loan at Werder Bremen, is expected to leave the German side in the summer. According to Bruyne, the West London side have told his agent that he must move to a “bigger club”.

Full story: Suddeutsche.de 

Both Barcelona and Paris St Germain have complained about the officiating in Tuesday’s Champions League quarter-final first leg in the French capital which ended 2-2. Barca’s Sergio Busquets, 24, said the referee “was not happy” until the French side had equalised, while PSG coach Carlo Ancelotti said the Catalans’ second goal was “a gift from the ref”.

Full story: Marca 

German legend Franz Beckenbauer, 67, says Juventus keeper Gianluigi Buffon, 35, was made to look like a “pensioner” in Tuesday’s 2-0 defeat by Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

Full story: Corriere.it 

AND FINALLY

Former Derby County, Plymouth and Inter Milan defender Taribo West has been accused of lying about his age by ex-Partizan Belgrade president Zarko Zecevic, who claims the player was 40 – not 28 – when he joined in 2002.

Full story: Daily Mail 

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