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Football transfer rumours: Ajax’s Toby Alderweireld to Tottenham?

2nd November 2012

Today’s fluff hears what it wants to hear and disregards the rest

Ian Holloway emits an odd blend of maverick appeal and almost pathetic eagerness to please. He also looks like a shaved and scrubbed Baldrick and – here’s the relevant bit — he now has a cunning plan. It is to leave Blackpool and take over Crystal Palace, the cunning part apparently being that he has extracted an assurance from the London club’s rulers that their best player, Wilfried Zaha, will not be sold in January. So there you have it: Holloway could be taking up residence at Selhurst Park some time soon, and storming out in a huff some time in early January.

Arsenal (and Manchester United, Tottenham and Liverpool) want Zaha, you see, and are said to be willing to fork out £10m for the player, whom they can entice with Wigan-style promises that if he does well, he could catch the eye of bigger clubs. Are Liverpool bigger than Arsenal? You can fight about that one amongst yourselves but Brendan Rodgers hopes to persuade Theo Walcott that the answer is yes. His argument goes something like this: “Here’s a contract worth £100,000-per-week. Who’s the daddy now? Good lad.”

It’s a compelling one and no mistake, especially as Arsenal have so far only offered the 23-year-old £75,000-per-week, which, as the incompetent mathematicians among may have noted, is 46.2% less than the proposed Anfield package. Ah, but Theo isn’t motivated by money, what he really wants his permission to play as a striker. Happily, Liverpool, as the competent mathematicians among you may have noted, have precisely zero of those at the moment so Walcott’s chances of being deployed there are pretty high. And anyway, why would Liverpool play him wide on the right when Raheem Sterling is better?

At this point you may be asking: but what of Joe Cole? To which the answer is: after his lamentable showing against Swansea, he’s been given pride of place on a rickety wooden stall outside the Shankly Gates, alongside fellow jumble sale items Stewart Downing and José Enrique. At this point you may be asking: but who the their right mind would agree to take Cole and his £120,000-per-week wages? To which the answer is: Liverpool are hoping for a halfwit.

In other news, Belgium is the new Brazil. Defender Toby Alderweireld will soon become the latest Belgian in the Premier League when he leaves Ajax to hook up with Jan Vertonghen and Mousa Dembélé at Tottenham.

Wes Hoolahan is so good he could be Belgian. And he might as well be for all Giovanni Trapattoni cares. The other thing you need to know about the slinky Norwich conjurer is that his contract at Carrow Road concludes at the end of the season. But if you want to try to sign him for your club. Hurry, because Aston Villa, Sunderland and Fulham are already on the case.

If Corinthians midfielder Paulinho is more your thing, tough. Because his club claim the midfielder won’t be sold any time soon. Then again, since one of the rumoured wooers is Chelsea, that could turn out to be untrue.

Now that we mention it, everything in this column could turn out to be untrue. Even the next bit, about West Ham mulling over a move for Croatian striker Andrej Kramaric. Yeah, that one sounded a bit fishy to us too. After all, West Ham already have Carlton Cole and Andy Carroll (who, you can be sure, won’t be going back to Liverpool in January) and how many galoots does on club need?

Finally, Zlatan Ibrahimovic claims he has never heard of Nicolas N’Koulou, which is a shame as the Swede is probably rich enough to outbid most of the clubs currently courting the Marseille centre-back, including Barcelona. But perhaps not Chelsea, who, according to persistent muttering, are tiring of David Luiz’s wacky ways and are looking for someone more boring. And luckily for them, they have something that Marseille may want even more than money: that’s right, Florent Malouda! Wacky ways indeed. © 2012 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

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