Tottenham midfielder Rafael van der Vaart is on the brink of resigning for his former club Hamburg, in a deal estimated to be worth 9.5 million pounds ($15.08 million).
The Dutch international saw his playing time limited last season, and had to settle for a place on the bench when the north London club traveled to Newcastle last Sunday.
Van der Vaart has allegedly agreed to the move, with Dutch daily De Telegraaf reporting that Tottenham and Hamburg are still finalizing the details of the transfer fee.
The 29-year-old previously played for Hamburg from 2005-08, scoring 48 goals in 112 club appearances.
The player’s return to the Bundesliga has been mooted for some time, with van der Vaart believed to be keen to play in Germany where his wife is a successful media personality.
Since arriving from Real Madrid two years ago, van der Vaart has established himself as somewhat of a cult figure at White Hart Lane, scoring 24 goals in just 62 league appearances.
New Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas has spent the summer overhauling his squad, with six players already having departed so far.
Sebastian Bassong, Vedran Corluka, Steven Pienaar, Niko Kranjcar, Ryan Nelson and Louis Saha have already been moved on by the Portuguese, with others close to leaving the club.
Defender Michael Dawson is also expected to leave north London after Spurs agreed a fee of around 10 million pounds with Queens Park Rangers, but Stoke and Sunderland have emerged as rivals for the England international’s signature.
The Daily Mail reports that both Stoke and Sunderland have expressed “firm interest” in the player, and will fight it out with QPR until a deal has been completed.
Sunderland have also stepped up their interest in Manchester City winger Adam Johnson after agreeing a fee with Wolverhampton Wanderers for forward Stephen Fletcher.
Johnson has been told he will not feature as much as he would like this season, after seeing his playing time limited during last year’s championship winning campaign.
Fletcher’s likely arrival at the Stadium of Light brings an end to Black Cats boss Martin O’Neil’s summerlong pursuit of the Scottish striker, with a 15 million pound transfer expected to be completed imminently.
O’Neil had been reluctant to pay in excess of 12 million pounds for the 25-year-old, but the forward will now travel to Wearside to agree personal terms after a compromise was reached.
Wolves have also accepted a 10 million pound bid from West Ham for winger Matt Jarvis.
The Hammers have been pursuing Jarvis for most of the summer, and have finally settled on a fee equaling the sum they paid Liverppol for Craig Bellamy in 2007.
The 26-year-old will now travel to London to agree personal terms on the deal, with West Ham manager Sam Allardyce hopeful that the deal will be completed in time for Jarvis to be included in his squad for Saturday’s tie with Swansea.
Liverpool will not consider letting England striker Andy Carroll leave the club on loan, with Reds boss Brendan Rodgers refusing to countenance the player’s departure unless the club receive a sizable offer.
Rodgers has said he would be a “nutcase” to let the 23-year-old leave on loan so soon after the club paid Newcastle 35 million pounds for his services.
“I need a minimum of three strikers – once the transfer window shuts that’s it until January,” Rodgers said.
“I have got [Luis] Suarez, Fabio Borini and Any Carroll. I would need to be a nutcase even to consider at this moment to let Carroll go out, unless there are solutions for that.
“There is absolutely no chance – and certainly not at Newcastle,” he said when asked about the prospects of a loan deal.
“Newcastle got 35 million pounds for this player last year. To even consider wanting to take him on loan is a liberty really.”
The transfer saga surrounding where Real Madrid midfielder Nuri Sahin will be playing this season seems to be changing by the day, with the player now believed to be heading to Liverpool on a season-long loan.
Arsenal and Liverpool have been battling it out for the Turkish international over the past weeks, after Real Madrid had made it clear that Sahin is free to leave the club should he wish.
It had looked Wednesday that the midfielder was certain to join up with the Gunners, but reports in the British media Thursday say that Sahin’s agent Reza Fazeli has traveled to meet with the Anfield side in order to push through a deal.
Arsenal have always been keen for any agreement to include an option to purchase the player at the end of the loan spell, but neither Real nor Sahin are understood to have been convinced by the north London side.
Liverpool are now believed to have stepped ahead of Arsenal, with Rodgers said to have guaranteed Sahin a position in the starting lineup.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has set his sights on alternatives, with Newcastle’s Cheick Tiote and Rennes midfielder Yann M’Vila being mentioned.
Reports in the Spanish media are also linking the club with a move for Sevilla winger Jesus Navas, after apparently being encouraged by summer signing Santi Cazorla to consider moving for the Spanish international.
The 26-year-old is said to have a 35 million pound buyout clause in his contract, but Sevilla are expected to be willing to consider offers for around half of that amount.
Spanish daily AS suggests that Navas is seen by Wenger as a possible replacement for Theo Walcott should the England winger refuse to extend his contract at the Emirates Stadium.
The Guardian reports that QPR are in talks to sign Inter Milan keeper Julio Cesar, after the Brazilian was told he could speak to other clubs following the arrival of Samir Handanovic from Udinese. Cesar was a key part of the Inter side that won the Champions League, Serie A and Coppa Italia treble under Jose Mourinho in 2010.