The Weekend's 5 Biggest Premier League Transfer Rumours
The transfer rumours are really cranking up as the end of the Premier League season creeps closer, with plenty of the biggest sides being linked with new or recurring names.
Premier League spending hit an average of £34 million per club during the 2012-13 season, with Chelsea the biggest gross spenders at £101 million and West Brom the lowest at £4.4 million.
There will doubtless be another vast quantity of money spent by the 20 Premier League sides over the summer months, and judging by the latest round of rumours to hit the world's media gossip columns, there will be plenty of exciting pursuits to keep an eye on too.
Here are the five biggest rumours of the weekend.
Arjen Robben Returning to the Premier League?
Arjen Robben helped his Bayern Munich side to a thumping 4-0 UEFA Champions League victory over Barcelona, but that apparently hasn't been enough to persuade incoming manager Pep Guardiola that he has a big part to play next season.
Robben is reported to be one players in the squad whom Guardiola has deemed dispensable (via Daily Mail), and with Mario Götze's signature already assured, the former Chelsea and Real Madrid wide forward will now be looking for a new club.
No specific teams are mentioned with a firm bid, but the report indicates that "several leading Premier League clubs" will be queueing up to bring Robben back to the top flight in England.
Sven Bender to Manchester...City or United?
Another midfielder who impressed in this week's Champions League ties for the German contingent is Borussia Dortmund's Sven Bender.
Bender is said to be attracting serious interest (via Metro) from both Manchester clubs. Arsenal are also mentioned as interested, but are seen as a less probable destination than the other two.
Bender is rated at around €14 million, though any potential transfer fee would likely be far higher, reflecting his long-term contract at Dortmund.
Stevan Jovetic to Arsenal
Arsenal have been linked with Stevan Jovetic of Fiorentina for a long time, and now they are reported to have finally opened official talks with his current club about bringing him to the Emirates Stadium in the summer (via Daily Mail).
The Gunners have had to watch on for parts of this season, as Chelsea and Tottenham surpass them in the race for a top-four spot—but a strong end to the campaign should see Arsenal make it once more. And to stay there, Arsene Wenger knows he will have to improve the squad significantly over the summer.
A £25 million bid for Jovetic seems to be the place to start, though the reports also suggest Wenger has a new goalkeeper high on his list of priorities.
New Boys Cardiff City to Move for Dirk Kuyt
It's not just the very top Premier League sides who will be spending the cash this summer, and soon-to-be new arrivals Cardiff City are determined to make their stint in the top flight a prolonged one.
Amongst their targets for his summer is Fenerbahce forward Dirk Kuyt, according to Metro, as they seek to bring some established and experienced quality to their side. Kuyt of course had six years in the Premier League with Liverpool and was renowned for his hard work and stamina as much as his contribution to scoring important goals.
Kuyt joined the Turkish side Fener last year for around £1 million and Cardiff hope to sign him for even less than that, according to the report.
Federico Fazio Wanted by Several Premier League Sides
We conclude our roundup with a La Liga-based centre-back who is reportedly in demand, with half the continent after his signature.
Sky Sports report that Sevilla defender Federico Fazio is interesting both Liverpool and Arsenal from England's top flight, with both sides almost certain to strengthen their central defensive options this summer.
In addition, teams from Italy, Russia and Germany are all also said to be in the hunt for the tall defender.
Fazio has just one more season to run on his present contract with Sevilla. He has been capped twice by Argentina, but is not a regular in the international squad.