Summer Transfer Window Gossip: Thiago Alcantara, Mario Gomez, Lars Bender
June is no more, and with the Confederations Cup complete, the summer transfer window retakes center stage in world football.
As July begins, the rumors continue to pour forth, and this Monday edition of the B/R Summer Transfer Window Gossip roundup is no exception. For today's roundup, we have updates on Thiago Alcantara, Mario Gomez, Lars Bender and more.
Keep reading for all the details.
Thiago Alcantara wants to include an inexpensive buyout clause in his contract if he signs with Manchester United, according to Spanish newspaper Sport (h/t ESPN). The clause would allow Thiago to leave Old Trafford for a small fee if he does not play a pre-determined number of matches.
Thiago, 22, is "widely expected" to join United, according to ESPN's article. The Spain Under-21 captain started 15 league matches for Barcelona last season. His buyout clause is currently €15 million but will rise to €90 million next month.
The midfielder scored three goals in the final of the Euro U-21 championships last month to lead Spain to the title.
The agent of Bayern Munich striker Mario Gomez has told German magazine Kicker (h/t Goal.com) that Gomez prefers a move to Italy.
Gomez, 27, is under contract with the European champions until 2016 but is considering a move away from the Allianz Arena after losing his starting position to Mario Mandzukic last season. Gomez, a German international, joined Bayern from Stuttgart in 2009.
"I hope that the next step will be made in the upcoming few days," agent Uli Ferber told Kicker. "Mario has a preference to go to Italy."
Last week, Gazzetta.It (h/t Sky Sports) quoted Fiorentina chief executive Sandro Mencucci as saying Gomez is interested in joining his club.
Citing reports in Germany, the Daily Mirror's Ed Malyon writes that Arsenal have failed with a €23 million bid to sign midfielder Lars Bender from Bayer Leverkusen.
Bender, 24, made 33 league appearances for Leverkusen last season, scoring three goals with six assists, per WhoScored. He has earned 14 caps with Germany, scoring three goals.
As Malyon writes, Leverkusen rejected Arsenal's bid because the club is unwilling to lose more first-team players this summer after selling Dani Carvajal to Real Madrid and Andre Schurrle to Chelsea.
Bender is under contract until 2017.
Speaking to talkSPORT, former Manchester United defender Gary Neville has advised England forward Wayne Rooney to stay with Manchester United.
Rooney, 27, has been linked with a move away from Old Trafford this summer, with the Daily Mail reporting that Arsenal, Chelsea and Real Madrid are interested. Rooney and Moyes are set to hold talks on Tuesday over the forward's future, according to the Mail.
Neville said: “Personally, with my allegiances, I would never recommend anyone leave Manchester United because I believe it to be a great stage to play football and you can achieve what you want there.”
Rooney scored 12 goals with 10 assists in 27 league appearances last season.
Chelsea defender David Luiz has tipped Brazil teammate Paulinho to succeed in the Premier League, per FIFA.com.
Paulinho, a 24-year-old defensive midfielder, scored twice in four appearances for Brazil at the Confederations Cup, including the winner against Uruguay in the semifinals. He is close to a £17 million move from Corinthians to Tottenham, according to BBC Sport.
Speaking about Paulinho's potential move, Luiz said: "If he gets to play in England, he will definitely go far. His game fits perfectly with the pace of English football."
In other Tottenham transfer news, the Daily Mirror reports that Spurs are close to signing Dinamo Zagreb's Tin Jedvaj and Alen Halilovic, citing reports in the players' native Croatia. Both players are 17 and would remain with Dinamo until turning 18.
Meanwhile, The Times reports (subscription required) that Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas has telephoned Barcelona's David Villa in an attempt to persuade the forward to join the Spurs.
Neymar wants Wayne Rooney to join him at Barcelona, according to Metro.
Manchester United are poised to sign defender Ezequiel Garay (pictured) from Benfica for £17 million, according to the Daily Mirror.
Paris Saint-Germain defender Thiago Silva says Barcelona approached him last season about joining the team, per Sportyou.es (h/t Goal.com).
France international defender Laurent Koscielny, reportedly a target for Barcelona and Bayern Munich, says he is happy at Arsenal, per Metro.
Juventus and Inter Milan will compete with Galatasaray to sign defender Aleksandar Kolarov from Manchester City, according to Sportske (h/t Football Italia).