BEIRUT

Football

Silva could move to PSG as Arsenal eye Giroud

Thiago Silva #3 of Brazil celebrates scoring a goal with teammate Sandro #5 against USA during an International friendly game at FedExField on May 30, 2012 in Landover, Maryland. (Rob Carr/Getty Images/AFP)

BEIRUT: Thiago Silva could be on the verge of a transfer to Paris Saint Germain, after the French side opened talks with the Brazilian defender’s current team AC Milan.

Milan had been adamant that the player was not available, but after PSG made an offer of 40 million pounds ($62 million) it looks likely that a deal could go through.

The Italian side’s Vice President Adriano Galliani has reportedly traveled to Paris for scheduled talks between the two sides, but the latest developments have caused an uproar among Milan fans who want the player to stay at the club.

“It will be a long negotiation process with PSG,” Galliani told Gazzetta dello Sport.

Milan striker Antonio Cassano expressed concern at the potential sale, describing the player as irreplaceable.

“Silva is a player that you cannot substitute, regardless of the amount of money offered,” Cassano said. “Thiago makes up 50 percent of the squad.”

Former Milan captain and Italy legend Paolo Maldini also revealed his disappointment at the move.

“Selling Thiago Silva is a sign of weakness,” Maldini said. “He is the greatest defender there is in the world right now and Milan cannot do without him.”

Corriere dello Sport reported that the sale of Silva has also split the Berlusconi family, with Milan President and former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi pushing through with the deal against the wishes of his daughter Barbara, herself a Milan director.

It is claimed by the Italian press that Milan’s finances are so dire the club are not in a position to turn down PSG’s offer, with the sale of Silva necessary to balance the club’s books.

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has enraged club chairman Daniel Levy after publicly urging club officials to offer him a new contract, with the Guardian reporting that the 65-year-old could be sacked in the coming days.

Last week, Redknapp seemingly criticized the club for making no attempt to clarify the uncertainty surrounding his future, suggesting that the dressing room could be disrupted if he is not offered an extension to his deal which expires in 12 months time.

Levy is known to be unhappy with the way that the Spurs finished last season, as Tottenham missed out to fierce rivals Arsenal and Chelsea in the race for Champions League football.

The chairman is said to be unimpressed with the way Redknapp handled the period when he was seen as the front-runner for the England job, with Levy suspecting that the speculation contributed to the Spurs’ capitulation.

Redknapp has furiously denied rumors that he has already tendered his resignation, but reports have emerged linking Everton boss David Moyes with a move to White Hart Lane.

Moyes also has 12 months remaining on his contract, but despite a number of meetings with Toffees Chairman Bill Kenwright he has yet to agree to an extension.

Following reports linking Montpellier striker Olivier Giroud with a move to Arsenal, his manager at the French club has revealed that the Gunners are likely to secure the services of the 25-year-old.

Rene Girard is keen to hang on to the player who scored 21 goals as Montpellier won the French title last season, but has conceded Giroud is likely to leave.

“If Arsene Wenger agrees with the president, he will sign for them,” Girard told French radio station RMC.

“Arsenal are very interested and Giroud wants to play in England.”

Marouane Chamakh looks set to be part of any deal, with the French club having expressed an interest in purchasing the Moroccan international.

“We would like Chamakh on loan, as part of the Giroud deal, but I don’t know if it is possible,” Girard added.

It is known that Arsenal are looking to offload the player who has failed to impress at the Emirates.

Real Madrid defender Ricardo Carvalho is believed to be considering a return to Portugal, with Sporting Lisbon keen on recruiting the former Chelsea player.

Portuguese daily DN reports that Sporting are hopeful of signing Carvalho, and are putting together a package to tempt the 34-year-old to commit to a homecoming.

The player struggled with form and fitness last season in which he played just 13 games.

Manchester United legend Andrew Cole has talked up a potential signing of Robert Lewandowski, with the former England striker describing the player as “very exciting.”

“I think he is a very exciting player who would suit the Premier League,” Cole told the Manchester Evening News. “What I like about him most is that he gets in behind defenses. I think that is what is needed again these days in the Premier League is to bring back a touch of variety.

“Not many forwards seem to want to play little balls around the box to get in behind opponents.”

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on June 14, 2012, on page 14.

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