Sunday 27 May 2018

WINDOW WATCH

AVB claims Bale is not for Real

Andre Villas-Boas insists Gareth Bale will not be leaving White Hart Lane this summer despite Real Madrid's very public pursuit of the Tottenham star.

Real have not hidden their desire to sign Bale, with club ambassador Zinedine Zidane making a number of flattering comments about the Welshman, who scored 31 goals for club and country last season.

However, Daniel Levy pledged not to let go of the north London club's top stars this summer, and Villas-Boas sees no reason why the Spurs chairman will go back on his word.

Signing a striker remains a priority for the Portuguese because of Tottenham's reliance on Bale last season. Barcelona striker David Villa is a leading target, while Brazilians Paulinho and Bernard are also reported to be on Villas-Boas' radar as he looks to secure the top-four spot that eluded the north London club last term.

RUMOUR MILL

Ireland winger Stephen Hunt could link-up with his brother Noel Hunt at Leeds United, who are on the verge of sealing a deal for Noel (30) after he rejected a new one-year contract with relegated Reading.

Leeds boss Brian McDermott, the former Reading manager, is also keen to land 31-year-old Stephen, who has been released by relegated Wolves .

Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has denied reports suggesting he is close to a move to Galatasaray.

Hamburg are keen to bring in Paraguay international Roque Santa Cruz as a replacement for Son Heung-min following his move to Bundesliga rivals Bayer Leverkusen. The 31-year-old is a free agent after his contract with Manchester City expired this summer.

Santa Cruz spent last season on loan at Malaga, gaining some more Champions League experience, and Hamburg believe he could aid their push for a place in Europe next season.

Former Bohemians striker Paddy Madden has been targeted by Nottingham Forest.

Madden (23) enjoyed a prolific time at Yeovil Town last season, scoring 24 goals, including the winner in the promotion play-off final against Brentford at Wembley.

DONE DEALS

Aston Villa's early-summer flurry of recruitment continued with the club confirming the signing of defender Antonio Luna from Sevilla.

The 22-year-old left-back, who has been capped at various youth levels for Spain, has put pen to paper on a three-year deal with Villa.

Irish Independent

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