Thursday, 30 August 2007

Adriano, Bresciano, Mancini, Barnes, Shorey And Cole

Despite rumours circulating last night that West Ham United had tabled a £15million bid for Adriano, the majority of this morning's press have concluded that the club's chances of landing the Inter Milan player are slipping away fast. According to the Guardian, Hammers officials have privately conceded that their pursuit of Adriano is proving "complicated" with the player understood to favour a move to Lazio, recently qualified for the Champions League, if he is forced to leave Internazionale. Dominic Fifield states that the club's deputy chief executive, Scott Duxbury, was in Milan on Tuesday to speak to Inter officials in the hope of smoothing a 12-month loan for the 25-year-old forward. Yet, despite agreement in principle between the clubs, Adriano has refused to countenance a loan move abroad and remains in dispute with Inter over his future. Inter would rather loan the player, but the Brazilian is more keen to make a permanent move if he does not feature in the San Siro club's plans, with Lazio his preferred destination.

The Express think West Ham United have made a £10million bid to sign Adriano – but are not confident of netting the Inter Milan striker before the transfer window closes tomorrow. They believe that Duxbury negotiated the fee after it became clear a loan deal was not an option. He then reported back to chairman Eggert Magnusson yesterday, but any transfer could be held up by a dispute between Adriano and Inter. Jason Burt is also convinced that West Ham changed their offer and but he insists a fee closer to £15million was agreed for the services of the Brazil striker. The article in The Independent claims West Ham are also willing to meet Adriano's wage demands but believe their prospects of landing the player have been harmed because of the fractious relationship between Adriano and his club, Internazionale, although it also appears that the player has now rejected the move. It may be a deal that West Ham return to in January as with their continued interest in Eidur Gudjohnsen- a player currently the subject of an audacious bid from Portsmouth according to some reports. There are also suggestions that Inter are less keen to let Adriano go, claims Burt, because Alvaro Recoba, another striker deemed surplus to requirements, is close to agreeing a move to Torino. Inter had tried to do a deal with Arsenal – with the Italian club wanting to take midfielder Mathieu Flamini in return but the proposal was dismissed by Arsène Wenger. Manchester City, however, do remain interested in Adriano.

The same piece has
Alan Curbishley re-doubling his efforts to sign Giles Barnes before tomorrow's transfer window deadline but the club may have to pay more than £5million for the talented 19-year-old midfielder. West Ham officials have contacted Derby County again to inquire about Barnes, despite having at least two previous bids, of £2.5million and £4million, rejected. The player has missed the start of the season through injury but is now believed to be close to fitness. Although the double fracture to Kieron Dyer's right leg, which will see him out of action for at least six months, is said to not have influenced the interest in Barnes, the fact that Julien Faubert, another right-sided player, is also suffering from a long-term injury has somewhat sharpened minds to the situation. The Mirror go one further and claim an improved bid was officially tabled last night.

While Barnes and Palermo's Mark Bresciano remain on the Hammers shopping list, the people over at the Guardian feel the most likely new arrival at Upton Park before tomorrow night's deadline remains Reading's England left-back, Nicky Shorey. Reading have rejected a £5million bid from West Ham, but they suggest an improved offer of some £6million and the utility player Hayden Mullins could do the trick. Given the club's current shortage of midfield players it would seem unlikely that Mullins would be sacrificed. The Independent makes no mention of a player exchange but does state that Shorey has told the Royals he wants to leave and has no intention of signing a new contract.

The Daily Mail also has the Barnes story but have decided to throw Roma's Alessandro Mancini in to the mix as another possible West Ham United target. Mancini's name was briefly linked to the club about a month ago but that talk was quickly dismissed at the time. The same paper has also taken a speculative flier on a story about Joe Cole's supposedly strained relationship with Jose Mourinho. According to Neil Ashton, Cole's long-term future at Chelsea is back in doubt after a fiery exchange with Mourinho following last weekend's 1-0 win over Portsmouth. The pair reportedly clashed following Cole's 15-minute cameo appearance against Pompey and their dispute has left the England midfielder wondering if he is still part of the manager's plans. West Ham, who are aware of Cole's position, have apparently been exploring the possibility of asking to take him on loan before the transfer window closes, but Kenyon will not allow one of their best players to leave. Ashton believes the Hammers, who sold Cole to Chelsea for £6.6million in August 2003, are one of the few teams who could take on the player's £80,000 a week salary.

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