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29th Jul 2013

Transfer Talk: Celtic fancy McClean, Bale deal heats up and David Luiz is in demand

Another Irish international linked with the Scottish champs as Gareth Bale dominates most of this morning’s papers.


Another Irish international linked with the Scottish champs as Gareth Bale dominates most of this morning’s papers.

We’ll get to the Gareth Bale saga in a minute but we have to start with the latest Irish player linked with a move to Celtic. Kevin Doyle was the talk last week and now Sunderland’s James McClean is rumoured to be in the sights of Neil Lennon.

The Express reports that a £2.5million deal is what Celtic wish to do, which sounds a little cheap to us, and the paper also says that the rumour that it was already a done deal have been denied by Celtic, who also fancy winger Christian Atsu from Porto if they can’t get McClean.

With Paolo Di Canio at the Stadium of Light, no move in or out would surprise us but even after a difficult second season, we would have thought the Italian would want to keep the Derry man. We shall see, though again the lure of Champions League football may be tempting for the 24-year-old.

With that sorted, we can turn to the man of the day, at least according to the back pages; Gareth Bale. Every paper has a story on the Welshman, covering every possible permutation of his possible move to Real Madrid.

The Express say that Tottenham are adamant Bale is not for sale. The Telegraph say that contract talks with the club are set to reopen this week while the Times say that Daniel Levy is refusing to speak to Bale, so we guess the negotiations will be conducted over Twitter DMs.

The Sun are the most bullish about a move happening, claiming that Real Madrid will offer Spurs £51m, plus Angel Di Maria AND Fabio Coentrao, for Bale and they want the deal done by August 11. We do love an arbitrary transfer deadline. On paper that deal looks pretty good to us, but we suspect Levy will, if he is speaking to Bale, want more cash.

And the papers also have begun to speculate on how Spurs will spend the Bale cash, if and when they get it. The Express report that the club have met the £26m release clause to get Roberto Soldado while the Star reckon that PSG’s Javier Pastore could be on his way to White Hart Lane to replace Bale.

The other big deal floating around today is Bayern Munich’s interest in David Luiz, which is across most of the papers too. The Chelsea man, long reported to be a Barcelona target, is still coveted by Pep Guardiola, even at his new club. The Mail reckons he could cost the Bundesliga giants £40m.

As for the slightly less juicy deals, Liverpool are after Benfica left back Lorenzo Melgarejo (Express), Fulham are trying to get in on the long-running chase for Darren Bent (Times) and Carlton Cole could be on his way to St Etienne (Sun).

Finally, the walking haircut disaster that is Marouane Chamakh may be set for a move to Crystal Palace, according to the Sun. Get that money on Palace for the drop now…