Coral’s rumour reel: Liverpool looking at Monaco duo?
Today’s rumours begin on Merseyside, where Brendan Rodgers is reportedly ready to launch a double raid on Ligue 1 giants Monaco for Argentine winger Lucas Ocampos, 20, who made 14 outings on loan at Marseille last season, and Tunisia defender Aymen Abdennour, 25, who shone at centre back in the French principality’s Champions League run.
The former Toulouse tough man recently told press: “I am ready for anything. I’d love to play for big clubs. Why not leave so I can make more progress?”, giving Liverpool (5/2 with Coral for a top four finish) hope that he can be prised away from the Stade Louis II this summer.
Promoted club Watford, meanwhile, also look set to dig deep into the Vicarage Road coffers for a tricky Argentine, having made a club record £7m offer for Genoa flank threat Diego Perotti, according to reports. The former Sevilla star is now 26 and hit four goals plus six assists in Serie A over the past season.
Staying with Griffin-related outgoings, young Genoa goalie and Italy cap Mattia Perin could also be plucked from Serie A, with Tottenham tipped to be weighing up a move for the talented 22-year-old stopper should number one Hugo Lloris depart.
From north London to west, Premier League champions Chelsea are also aiming to add more defensive nous to their ranks, with Zenit St Petersburg midfield anchorman Axel Witsel ready to bring some more steel to the Stamford Bridge side as a potential replacement for fringe player John Obi Mikel.
Swansea City and Newcastle United (5/1 to be relegated) continue to be linked with competing for strikers, and Watford dangerman Troy Deeney is the latest to be mooted for a move to both, though the Hornets would likely be loathe to let their hitman and skipper, who is valued at around £15m, leave just yet.
Fellow Premier League new boys Bournemouth are also grabbing the headlines, with the Cherries supposedly set to swoop for QPR and former Spurs centre half Steven Caulker, who was highly-rated before his ill-fated transfer to the now relegated Hoops.
On the continent, meanwhile, Juventus are believed to be close to the signing of Atletico Madrid sharpshooter Mario Mandzukic, as Italian press report a deal worth £12.8m has been agreed for the marksman, with Carlos Tevez expected to exit Europe to return to Boca Juniors.
Ambitious Turkish outfit Fenerbahce are also set to cause waves, and could fork out around £10m to capture both Manchester United and Portugal winger Nani and Arsenal and Colombia custodian David Ospina.