Sunday, January 30, 2011

Northern Ireland

It's looking increasingly likely that we'll be turning to Villa misfit Stephen Ireland to bolster our midfield options, with a loan deal agreed and the medical taking place on Tyneside today. The former Man City man may be so much a king of bling as to put Kieron Dyer very firmly in the shade, and has been criticised by Gerard Houllier for a perceived discrepancy between performances in training and in matches, but he's clearly a talented midfielder and as recently as 2008/9 was named as City's player of the year. Perhaps a temporary move to St James' Park will be mutually beneficial.

Less encouraging reports suggest that, like a dog with a bone, Spurs are refusing to give up the possibility of striking a deal for Rocky. According to the Sun, they've upped their offer for our injured talisman to £25 million but the paper also claims that "the Londoners have rejected the offer" - news to me that we've been relocated to the Big Smoke (unless this is a reference to Jabba and Llambiarse, of course)... Given the match currently being played out at Craven Cottage, 'Appy 'Arry might be better advised to concentrate on defensive recruitments.

Meanwhile, we won't be welcoming Stephane Sessegnon to St James', the Benin midfielder having for reasons best known to himself chosen to move to the Dark Place, but did at least have the satisfaction of seeing Stevenage turfed out of the FA Cup yesterday, courtesy of a nicely cruel late goal from a Reading side featuring one Andy Griffin.

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