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WEDNESDAY, 23 APR 2014
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Arsenal to sign Giroud after Euro Cup 2012
(L-R) French forward Olivier Giroud, French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris and French physical assistant Philippe Lambert leave hotel  in Donetsk on June 17, 2012. (AFP PHOTO / FRANCK FIFE)
(L-R) French forward Olivier Giroud, French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris and French physical assistant Philippe Lambert leave hotel in Donetsk on June 17, 2012. (AFP PHOTO / FRANCK FIFE)
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BEIRUT: Arsenal will announce the signing of Olivier Giroud after Euro 2012’s conclusion.

In the past few days reports have circulated that Arsenal were close to securing the services of the French striker for a fee of around 12 million pounds, but France Football has confirmed that a deal to take the player from Montpellier has already been agreed.

Giroud, 25, has scored 33 goals in 71 league matches for Montpellier, and helped his side win the Ligue 1 title this season.

The Gunners have already signed German international Lukas Podolski from FC Koln.

Gylfi Sigurdsson has been granted permission by his current club Hoffenheim to speak with representatives from Liverpool about a transfer to Anfield.

The Icelandic international had looked set to complete a permanent switch to Swansea after a successful loan spell at the Welsh club, but Brendan Rodgers’ decision to move to Liverpool looks to have scuppered the deal.

Hoffenheim manager Markus Babbel, a former Liverpool defender, revealed in a statement that the player has been granted a period of leave to meet with the Reds for negotiations, but it is expected that a transfer will be announced within the coming week.

“The club wants the 22-year-old to continue to secure a future in the Premier League,” Babbel said.

“Gylfi wants to stay in England and is in negotiations there.

“Thus, it makes no sense for both sides for him to return to Hoffenheim, perhaps only for a few days.”

Real Madrid have made a double-swap bid for AC Milan’s Kevin-Prince Boateng, offering the Italian side Nuri Sahin and Lassana Diarra in exchange for the Ghanaian international.

Tuttosport reports that Milan are reluctant to consider offers for the player this summer, but financial pressures mean that the club will be forced to sell members of their squad to remain financially solvent.

The Rossoneri Vice President Adriano Galliani has rejected Real’s approach, with the Italian side hopeful they will only have to sell players on the fringes of the first team.

Manchester United’s Dimitar Berbatov could be on his way to Spain after the player was linked to big-spending Malaga.

The Spanish side, financed by a Qatari sheikh, are looking to sign a high-profile striker after the club secured qualification for next season’s Champions League for the first time in the club’s history.

The Bulgarian joined United in a club record 30.2 million pound transfer from Tottenham in 2008 but has been told he is surplus to requirements at Old Trafford.

The Daily Mail reports that the 31-year-old is being considered by Malaga along with Klaas-Jan Huntelaar of Schalke, with Berbatov a much cheaper alternative to the Dutch international.

Wigan’s Nigerian winger Victor Moses could be set to make a surprising move to Chelsea, with the Blues set to offer up to 10 million pounds for the player.

The talented 21-year-old was one of the key reasons why the Latics avoided relegation from the Premier League last season, but his refusal to sign a new contract could force the club to sell the player.

Arsenal and QPR have also been linked with the player in recent weeks, but Wigan Chairman Dave Whelan has revealed that Chelsea’s interest is very much concrete.

“Chelsea would need to get realistic before we would even listen to them,” Whelan told ESPN.

“They made a bid and we turned it down flat.

“It cannot be for the player’s good. Victor Moses needs another year or two before moving to a club like Chelsea,” he said.

“He needs games and he won’t be first choice at Chelsea. At the moment, they are taking the mickey with the bid they’ve made,” he added.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on June 20, 2012, on page 14.
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