x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Transfer talk: July 18 - Chelsea cool on Oscar, Toon close in on Douglas

The National's daily guide to the latest big name transfer deals and moves taking place across world football this summer.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic with a spectacular shot on goal for Sweden during Euro 2012
Zlatan Ibrahimovic with a spectacular shot on goal for Sweden during Euro 2012

Lyon midfielder Michel Bastos and an English Premier League striker have been targeted by big-spending Pro League champions Al Ain as they look to strength for the new season.  Read our full story here.

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Newcastle United have stepped up their interest in FC Twente defender Douglas after reportedly tabling a bid of more than EU4m (Dh18m).

The English Premier League side had been monitoring the player during their efforts to sign teammate Luuk de Jong, who today signed for Borussia Moenchengladbach

But the 24-year-old is valued substantially above that by the Eredivise club - and has also been attracting interest other clubs, including league rivals Fulham and West Ham.

Any completed deal may end up delayed, however, as the player must remain in Holland until the end of next month to be eligible for the Dutch national team.

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Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo has played down reports linking him with a move for hotly-tipped Brazil midfielder Oscar.

The 20-year-old is currently in London preparing for the 2012 Olympics football tournament, and has been heavily linked with a £25m move to Stamford Bridge.

But Di Matteo remains coy about any bid for the Internacional star.

"I can tell you that he's not a Chelsea player so it's difficult for me to talk about a player that doesn't belong to us," the Italian told the club's official website.

"I know there has been speculation we are interested in this player and in due course if there is anything to announce we will do.

"All I would say is that he is a very young talented midfield player."

Meanwhile new Chelsea signing Eden Hazard's younger brother Thorgan Hazard could link up with his sibling at the club.

The 19-year-old Lens winger is being tracked by Chelsea, with the Ligue 2 side's sporting director Antoine Sibierski admitting the sides are in talks over a possible deal.

"We're in discussions," Sibierski said.

"I can understand why a player would want to leave Ligue 2 to go to Chelsea.

"Now, like in every transfer with a year left on his contract, it must be paid for. There are also compensation fees for training him."

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic looks set to complete his deal to join Paris St Germain from AC Milan today, subject to a medical.

The Swedish international skipper will join the Qatari-backed French side as part of a double signing with Thiago Silva for an estimated EU70m (Dh316m).

The 30-year-old former Barcelona striker will be paid a reported EU15m a year once he completes the deal, with the transfer taking PSG's spending to more than EU100m in the close season.

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Newly promoted English Premier League side Reading have signed defenders Adrian Mariappa and Chris Gunter as they continue preparations for their return to the top flight.

Mariappa joins from Watford while Gunter moves from Nottingham Forest - both on three-year deals.

The pair joined for undisclosed fees, described as 'significant' by the club.

They join Pavel Pogrebnyak, Nicky Shorey, Danny Guthrie and Garath McCleary in Brian McDermott's new-look side.

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Tottenham midfielder Rafael Van der Vaart has denied he wants a move to the Arabian Gulf this summer.

The Dutch international has been linked with a move away from White Hart Lane, with a switch to the Middle East being suggested.

But the 29-year-old says he wants to stay in the English Premier League and play under new manager Andre Villas-Boas.

"My place is at Spurs.," he said. "I want to win the title with this club. Each summer my name appears in the transfer market.

"The new coach has good plans for me and this is important."

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Japan international goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima has signed joined Standard Liege on a three-year deal.

The 29-year-old stopper had been linked with a number of leading Italian and English sides, but has opted to remain in Belgium after two seasons at Lierse.

The out-of-contract player - a standout in Japan's successful Asian Cup campaign earlier this year - said on his website: "Standard are always one of the top contenders in Belgium and their supporters are the most enthusiastic.

"I'd been thinking what is the best way for me and I decided this is the most suitable for my life," he said.

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Bundesliga side Freiburg have signed Norway defender Vegar Eggen Hedenstad for an undisclosed fee from Stabaek IF.

"With Hedenstad, we have found a player who can help us as a full-back," said the club's director of sport Dirk Dufner.

The highly-rated 21-year-old already holds two full international caps with Norway.