World Football Gossip Roundup: Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Nemanja Vidic, Fabrice Muamba
In the absence of real transfer gossip, the rumor mill often heads another direction: Players denying rumors.
This is one of those days.
In this Thursday edition of the B/R World Football Gossip Roundup, we have updates on Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Nemanja Vidic, a couple of big stars who apparently aren't going anywhere.
There are also updates on Arsenal's transfer policy, racism in Spanish football, Fabrice Muamba's new life after playing football and some good news for Wayne Rooney.
Read on for all the details.
Leonardo: Zlatan Ibrahimovic Not Leaving PSG
Paris Saint-Germain director of football Leonardo says Zlatan Ibrahimovic will not return to AC Milan in the near future (via Goal.com).
Ibrahimovic, a 31-year-old Sweden international striker, said earlier this week that he loves Milan and could return to the club one day (via ESPN FC). The Sweden international left Milan to join PSG over the summer.
According to Leonardo, a Milan return won't happen soon.
"He was only voicing his respect for Milan and for a city that he loves," Leonardo told La Gazzetta dello Sport. "Ibrahimovic is not going anywhere until he has won everything there's to win at PSG."
Agent: Nemanja Vidic Not Leaving Manchester United
The agent of Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic says his client will not leave United for Juventus in the January transfer window (via Sky Sports).
Vidic, a 30-year-old Serbia international central defender, is recovering from a knee operation. He missed five months of the previous season with an injury to a cruciate knee ligament.
Vidic has been linked with a move to Italian champions Juventus, but agent Silvano Martina denied the rumors.
Vidic is not playing at this time because he's had surgery, so he's only thinking about his recovery and not about the transfer market. Juventus are complete with their non-EU players for this season and it is highly unlikely they will make a bid for Vidic, therefore I can categorically rule out any interest from them. Vidic is already part of a top club and there are no negotiations with Juventus or Barcelona.
Arsenal Manager Arsene Wenger Sending Scouts out for Strikers?
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has asked his talent scouts to find a new striker for a potential move in the January transfer window, according to the Daily Telegraph's Jeremy Wilson.
The Telegraph mentions four names as potential targets: Athletic Bilbao's Fernando Llorente, Atletico Madrid's Adrian Lopez, Borussia Dortmund's Robert Lewandowski and Fiorentina's Stevan Jovetic.
The Daily Mail reports that Wenger will have £35 million to spend in January and suggests that Llorente and Lopez top Arsenal's wish list.
Spanish FA President: Racism "Does Not Exist" in Spanish Football
Spanish FA president Ángel María Villar has been quoted as saying "there is no racism in Spanish football" (via Daily Telegraph).
UEFA fined the Spanish FA after fans directed racist abuse at Italy's Mario Balotelli during Euro 2012.
In 2011, Barcelona defender Dani Alves said: "The clubs and the league try to do some things to stop it. They try to punish the clubs, but it is uncontrollable. It will not go away."
Villar, 62, played for Athletic Bilbao among others during a career that lasted from 1969-81. He has served as president of the Spanish FA since 1988.
Fabrice Muamba Set for FIFA Role?
FIFA president Sepp Blatter has invited former Bolton Wanderers midfielder Fabrice Muamba to the organization's Zurich headquarters in order to discuss a possible role with world football's governing body (Reuters via The Independent).
Muamba, 24, collapsed on the pitch during an FA Cup match in March. His heart stopped for 78 minutes, but he survived.
The incident forced Muamba to retire in August.