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Transfer Watch: Stoke swoop for Van Nistelrooy

STOKE City have made an approach to sign Ruud van Nistelrooy, the Holland forward who has been surplus to requirements at Real Madrid since they signed a new wave of galacticos in the summer.

Van Nistelrooy has made only two appearances this season and played 13 minutes in the league, scoring once.

"It may be a long shot but we've made inquiries and we'll see what comes from them," Peter Coates, the Stoke chairman, said. "It depends on him wanting games to make sure he goes to the World Cup."

Decent bets

Bolton Wanderers have inquired about steven fletcher becoming the first player to follow Owen Coyle from Burnley. The Scotland forward has scored nine goals in 22 appearances this season.

Coyle is also keen to sign winger chris eagles and full-back tyrone mears from his former club.

West Ham United are in talks about signing nuno gomes, the Portugal striker who has scored four goals for Benfica this season.

Manchester City are closing in on a £7m deal for Portsmouth centre-back younes kaboul.

Dead certs

andriy voronin has signed a three-year contract with Dynamo Moscow after completing his £2m move from Liverpool. The Ukraine forward spent last season on loan at Hertha Berlin.

Hull City have failed in their attempt to sign felipe caicedo, the Manchester City forward who has moved to Malaga on loan for the rest of the season.

dejan lovren's move to Lyons has stalled, leaving Tottenham Hotspur with a chance of signing the Dynamo Zagreb defender.

Long shots

Roman Pavlychenko has been linked with a move to Galatasaray. The Russia forward joined Tottenham for £13.9m at the start of last season, but has started only two matches during this campaign, both in the Carling Cup.

Wigan Athletic have inquired about roberto canella, the Sporting Gijon left back, as a possible replacement should Maynor Figueroa move to Sunderland.

Fulham have emerged as serious challengers to Manchester City in the chase for Crystal Palace striker victor moses.

(© The Times, London)

Irish Independent