Premier League duo to duel for Eduardo da Silva
Ex-Arsenal attacker Eduardo da Silva looks set to be at the centre of a summer transfer tussle, with several Premier League clubs keen to bring him back to British shores.
QPR and Stoke City, 2/1 and 9/1 to be relegated this season respectively, are reportedly leading the chase to sign the former Shakhtar Donetsk striker on a free transfer.
Eduardo, who also plied his trade at Croatian giants Dinamo Zagreb, spent four successful seasons with the Ukrainian champions, netting 24 league goals, but is now searching for a new challenge.
Other clubs reportedly in the mix for the 31-year-old include West Ham, Serie A side Lazio, and Turkish teams Besiktas and Fenerbahce, with the race to secure his signature heating up.
Eduardo, who began his youth career at Brazilian club Bangu, before switching to Dinamo, will be most familiar to fans from his stint at Arsenal between 2007 and 2010, where he netted 21 times in 67 appearances for the Gunners.
His time at the Emirates was, however, marred by the year the talented forward spent on the sidelines, following a horror tackle from Birmingham’s Martin Taylor in 2008. Eduardo was forced to sit out the rest of the season with a broken leg and dislocated ankle, only returning to the team in 2009.
Eventually sold to Shakhtar to revive his career, the Brazilian-born striker recently represented adopted country Croatia at the World Cup hosted in his native homeland.
The Blazers clashed with Phil Scolari’s Samba Boys in the tournament opener, but Eduardo did not get the opportunity to feature, as his side lost an enthralling encounter 3-1. He did, however, enjoy a cameo against Cameroon, before Croatia crashed out of the competition at the hands of Mexico.
With his team’s part in the Brazil finals over, Eduardo, who has significant Premier League and European experience, can take his pick of the side’s clamouring for his signature.
Stoke have already added a new striker to their squad, with former Manchester United man Mame Boram Diouf, who has scored 35 times in 71 appearances for Bundesliga club Hannover 96, now on the books.
However, Mark Hughes seems keen to add another poacher to the Potters’ attack, and with his team only managing to net 45 goals between them last term, they could certainly benefit from this bargain.
QPR are reportedly the biggest competition Stoke face for the out-of-contract star’s services, with Hoops boss Harry Redknapp turning his attention to additions in attack, following interest in defensive duo Rio Ferdinand and Steven Caulker.
If wheeler-dealer Redknapp can lure both Eduardo and Red Devils legend Ferdinand, also available on a free transfer, his recently promoted squad, odds-on at 2/5 to stay up this season, would be significantly strengthened without spending a penny.