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Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 23-Mar. 2 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-24-march-2-football-soccer-players-teams-022414 http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/24/022414-Rumor-Mill-GUNDO-GONE-DG-PI_20140224164223176_136_102.JPG
FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Feb. 21-28 FOX Soccer Power Rankings: Paris Saint-Germain return to top five after crushing Champions League win /foxsoccer/world/lists/power-rankings-february-21-28-paris-saint-germain-return-to-top-five-after-crushing-win-022114 http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/21/drasticjump-pi_20140221180930519_136_102.JPG
Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 17-23 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-17-23-football-soccer-players-teams-021714 http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/17/021714-SOCCER-Shock-Waves-HF-PI_20140217182428996_136_102.JPG
FOX Soccer Power Rankings - February 14-20 FOX Soccer Power Rankings: Lack of firepower have Arsenal going in the wrong direction /foxsoccer/world/lists/power-rankings-february-14-20-arsenal-going-in-the-wrong-direction-lack-of-firepower-021414 http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/14/021414-SOCCER-FAILURE-TO-FIRE-OB-pi_20140214172035535_136_102.JPG
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Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31984781 Rumor mill Rumor+mill Premier League

Christmas is coming and the transfer rumors are getting fat, as the Christmas carol goes (sort of). There’s a definite Yuletide feel to this week’s column as we approach the festive season. Manchester United boss David Moyes has already submitted his requests to Santa Claus via executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, but the elves are scratching their heads at how to build the perfect midfielder. Jose Mourinho is also looking to unwrap the striker of his dreams in January, but will Santa deliver? To help us get into the spirit we have enlisted the help of the woman who more than any other embodies Christmas. Ten songs by Mariah Carey bring a touch of glitter to this week’s gossip.

 

-- Warren Barner

James Devaney/WireImage - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G1_20131216132648979_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G1_20131216132648979_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31984783 Clint Dempsey Clint+Dempsey Premier League

RUMOR: SEATTLE TO FULHAM (LOAN)
LIKELIHOOD: Very good chance


Clint Dempsey has been a surprising flop since joining Seattle Sounders in August, but a bigger shock could be on the cards in the New Year. Dempsey left Fulham in acrimonious circumstances last year, but he has apparently held productive talks about returning to Craven Cottage for a two-month loan spell in January. For Fulham owner Shahid Khan it’s a clear case of all I want for Christmas is you, Clint.

Brad White - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G2_20131216132718981_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G2_20131216132718981_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31984784 Lionel Messi Lionel+Messi Premier League

RUMOR: LEAVING BARCELONA
LIKELIHOOD: Pull the other one


This is a real Christmas cracker of a story, but one we think will prove to be unfounded. The root of the story is that Messi is supposed to be unhappy with comments made by vice-president Javier Faus, who said the Argentine would not be offered an improved deal. Although Messi said he did not want to leave Camp Nou, those words came with the proviso he would be offered a new contract at the start of 2014. Add to the mix that Neymar could be earning more money than Messi and it sounds like a recipe for friction. We don’t believe Messi will be saying bye bye to Barca and this is just one of those stories dreamt up in Spain to fill sports newspapers that need filling.

LLUIS GENE/AFP - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G3_20131216132749983_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G3_20131216132749983_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31984785 Michael Laudrup/Glenn Hoddle Michael+Laudrup%2FGlenn+Hoddle Premier League

RUMOR: NEW TOTTENHAM BOSS
LIKELIHOOD: Certainly in the running


Andre Villas-Boas has gone and the search is on to find his successor. Several names have been mentioned, such as former England coach Fabio Capello and Guus Hiddink, but we think there are plenty of Spurs fans that would welcome back Glenn Hoddle with open arms given the chance. We reckon he’s up against Swansea boss Michael Laudrup, although Tim Sherwood may be given the caretaker role until the summer.
 

Tom Dulat/Julian Finney - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G4_20131216132850985_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G4_20131216132850985_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31984786 Wayne Rooney Wayne+Rooney Premier League

RUMOR: STAYING AT MANCHESTER UNITED
LIKELIHOOD: Still in the balance


Manchester United have launched their fight-back in a bid to keep Rooney at Old Trafford. All the talk recently has been that the England forward is leaving for Chelsea in the summer but the latest gossip is that United have made several phone calls to the player’s agent in the hope to hash out the terms of a new four-year contract purportedly worth £50million ($81.64million). There have may have been a breakdown in communication in the past between Rooney and United, but the next few weeks could prove significant in redressing those issues.

IAN KINGTON/AFP - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G5_20131216132922987_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G5_20131216132922987_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31984787 Samuel Eto'o Samuel+Eto%27o Premier League

RUMOR: MOVING TO MLS
LIKELIHOOD: Becoming increasingly likely


Thierry Henry last weekend described Eto’o as one of the greatest strikers the game has ever seen, but there is no doubting that the Cameroon star has failed to bring joy to the world of Chelsea fans this season. Eto'o has showed just glimpses of the talent that has brought him four African player of the year awards. It now seems likely that Eto’o will move to MLS rather than extend his stay in the Premier League in the summer. Galaxy will head the queue, but Seattle, Chivas USA and DC United are also thought to be in the mix.

Clive Rose - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G6_20131216133006989_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G6_20131216133006989_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31984809 Hulk Hulk Premier League

RUMOR: ZENIT ST. PETERSBURG TO CHELSEA
LIKELIHOOD: Just rumors


Hulk has done pretty well in Russia, but he is reportedly interested in joining a high-profile European club in the summer, an idea his club are prepared to entertain if the price is right. With a goal ratio of one every two games Hulk is the kind of player the Blues need to bolster a misfiring forward line. The Brazilian hinted in June that Mourinho was interested in him but whether the Blues want to make it happen remains open to question. If Chelsea are to win the league they need a forward in January, not July.
 

Mike Kireev/Epsilon - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/11/11/111113-Soccer-Zenit-St-Petersburg-Hulk-Gal-CH_20131111133155683_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/11/11/111113-Soccer-Zenit-St-Petersburg-Hulk-Gal-CH_20131111133155683_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31983107 Ashley Young Ashley+Young Premier League

RUMOR: MANCHESTER UNITED TO ASTON VILLA
LIKELIHOOD: Maybe, but cash could be a problem


If David Moyes had his way (and let’s face it, most of the United fans) Ashley Young would be heading out the Old Trafford door which would be held open for Anderson, Antonio Valencia, the much-berated Tom Cleverley and Nani. Young’s poor finishing against his former club Villa at the weekend highlighted how far the England winger has fallen. Whether Villa would want him back is another question altogether. Could he be a hero at Villa Park again and, more to the point, can Villa afford him?

ANDREW YATES/AFP - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G8_20131216133113993_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G8_20131216133113993_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31983108 Fredy Guarin Fredy+Guarin Premier League

RUMOR: INTER MILAN TO CHELSEA
LIKELIHOOD: United also in the frame
 

Chelsea are thought to have offered Demba Ba in exchange for midfielder Fredy Guarin, which seems like a strange deal to us. Do the Blues REALLY need another midfielder? However, more interestingly Manchester United are also thought to have joined the race and are prepared to swap the much-loved Javier Hernandez for the Colombian. When Christmas comes and goes will Inter Milan have the striker they so desperately need? It may depend on whether they fancy Ba or Chicharito.

Pier Marco Tacca - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G9_20131216133142995_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G9_20131216133142995_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31983109 Aleksander Kolarov Aleksander+Kolarov Premier League

RUMOR: MANCHESTER CITY TO INTER MILAN
LIKELIHOOD: He’ll end up in Italy eventually


There was a time when Kolarov was dubbed the best left-back in the world, although admittedly those words came from the mouth of Lazio owner Claudio Lotito three years ago when he was trying to push up the price. These days the Serbian defender is struggling to hold down a first-team place at Manchester City despite getting more game time under current boss Manuel Pellegrini. Kolarov has 18 months left to run on his contract and has admitted he would love to return to Serie A one sweet day. That could become a reality in summer.

David Rogers - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G10_20131216133207997_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G10_20131216133207997_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31983111 Luke Shaw Luke+Shaw Premier League

RUMOR: JOINING CHELSEA
LIKELIHOOD: It’s complicated


He’s not a big name yet, but he will be in the future. Both the Blues and Manchester United have been linked with a move for the Southampton left-back, but any move depends on several scenarios. First things first: Shaw wants to stay at Saints, but his club may find the Blues’ £20 million offer ($35 million) difficult to resist. The theory is that this move would pave the way for Ryan Bertrand’s move to Everton so that Leighton Baines can finally get his wish and join Manchester United. It’s like that.

Laurence Griffiths - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G11_201312161332321_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G11_201312161332321_107_80.JPG
Premier League 433 2740 Top football/soccer transfer rumors: Dec. 16-22 31983112 Cristian Zapata Cristian+Zapata Premier League

RUMOR: AC MILAN TO MANCHESTER UNITED
LIKELIHOOD: Watching brief


We just can’t let go of the Manchester United rumors at the moment – and there are plenty to choose from! One of them doing the rounds is that United are interested in versatile AC Milan defender Cristian Zapata, who has been watched by both Phil Neville and members of the club’s scouting team. United need a new center-back desperately, and Zapata fits the bill if David Moyes fails to get his first choice, Porto’s Eliaquim Mangala. Let’s see.
 

Jeff J Mitchell - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G12_201312161332553_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/12/16/121613-SOCCER-rumor-mill-ahn-G12_201312161332553_107_80.JPG
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http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/24/022414-Rumor-Mill-GUNDO-GONE-DG-PI_20140224164223176_136_102.JPG Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 23-Mar. 2 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds... Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. Robin van Persie's rumored return to Arsenal would be beyond controversial in many ways. Feb 26, 2014 8:47 AM ET 1 16 /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-24-march-2-football-soccer-players-teams-022414
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http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/17/021714-SOCCER-Shock-Waves-HF-PI_20140217182428996_136_102.JPG Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 17-23 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds... Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. Robin van Persie's rumored return to Arsenal would be beyond controversial in many ways. Feb 20, 2014 10:42 AM ET 1 16 /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-17-23-football-soccer-players-teams-021714
http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/14/021414-SOCCER-FAILURE-TO-FIRE-OB-pi_20140214172035535_136_102.JPG FOX Soccer Power Rankings - February 14-20 FOX Soccer Power Rankings: Lack of firepower... FOX Soccer Power Rankings: Lack of firepower have Arsenal going in the wrong direction Lack of firepower has Gunners going in the wrong direction. Feb 15, 2014 1:14 PM ET 1 16 /foxsoccer/world/lists/power-rankings-february-14-20-arsenal-going-in-the-wrong-direction-lack-of-firepower-021414