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Transfer watch

Liverpool's Andrea Dossena will shortly sign for Napoli in a €5m deal, according to various reports in the Italian press. Napoli's sporting director, Riccardo Bigon, arrived in Merseyside on Monday for talks that have apparently borne fruit.

Dossena, 28, arrived at Anfield in the summer of 2008 but has failed to settle into the rhythm of the English game.

With Fabio Aurelio dominating the left-back position, and other places in the squad also being unavailable, Dossena made fewer than 20 first team appearances in two and a half seasons.

However, Liverpool held out on a sale until they were able to recoup some of their original outlay, which was in the region of €8.75m at contemporary prices.

Liverpool also entered the race to sign Marouane Chamakh last night and were close to an agreement for the services of Maxi Rodriguez.

Chamakh, 25, is out of contract at Bordeaux but is free to sign a pre-contract agreement that would enable him to move at the end of this season, with Arsenal also expected to renew their interest in the Morocco player.

Rodriguez is out of contract at Atletico Madrid this summer and wants more first-team football in his bid to claim a place in the Argentina World Cup squad.

The winger may be the only arrival at Anfield this month, but the club are hoping to sell Ryan Babel.

MANCHESTER City are in discussions aimed at bringing Patrick Vieira (pictured) back to the Premier League after Roberto Mancini identified the former Arsenal captain as his first signing for the club.

Although Mancini said that he would not talk about making additions until after the Carling Cup semi-final first leg against Manchester United tomorrow, talks have taken place over the past 48 hours over a deal to take Vieira, 33, on loan from Inter Milan until the end of the season.

It is possible that the move could be finalised in time for Vieira to make his City debut at home to Blackburn Rovers on Monday.

Mancini is well acquainted with Vieira, who won two Serie A titles while playing under him for Inter in 2006. The only apparent obstacle to a deal is the possibility of a late intervention from another club, with Arsene Wenger admitting last summer that he would be tempted to take the French midfield player back to Arsenal.

Mancini has ruled out the possibility of signing Antonio Cassano, the Sampdoria forward, and has questioned the feasibility of persuading Juventus and Inter to sell Georgio Chiellini and Mario Balotelli respectively. He did, however, acknowledge reports in Italy linking him with moves to sign Christian Chivu and Ivan Cordoba, another two of his mainstays at Inter.

Franck Ribery's hopes of leaving Bayern Munich, with Chelsea and Real Madrid interested, have risen after the German club admitted that they are to cut their wage bill.

Thomas Sorensen says that he could be tempted to leave Stoke City. The goalkeeper, 33, claimed that he has been the subject of offers. "It was from one of the biggest clubs in Europe," he said. "I am happy but if an offer does come it will be hard to refuse."

Celtic would like to sign Dave Kitson, who has returned to the Britannia Stadium after three months on loan at Middlesbrough.

Blackburn Rovers have given permission for Benni McCarthy, the South Africa striker, to leave. "Benni thinks he should be playing more games but I think that is down to him more than me," Sam Allardyce, the Blackburn manager, said.

Lyon are interested in Younes Kabul, the Portsmouth defender.


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