Thursday's gossip column - transfers and rumours


Swansea manager Michael Laudrup has laughed off reports linking him with a loan move for Barcelona and Spain striker David Villa, 31.
Neymar says he will remain with Santos despite speculation linking the 20-year-old Brazilian striker with a move to Europe, with Manchester City, Chelsea, Real Madrid and Barcelona said to be keen to sign him.
Neymar says he is happy to stay with Santos
Liverpool could be set to bid for Wigan striker Franco Di Santo, 23, in the January transfer window. Reds manager Brendan Rodgers worked with the Argentine at Chelsea.
Newcastle striker Demba Ba, 27, has admitted he would like to play for boyhood idols Paris Saint-Germain. The Senegalese player is being tracked by Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and QPR.
Reading's billionaire owner Anton Zingarevich wants to sign Andrey Arshavin, 31, from Arsenal in January as part of the Royals' bid to stave off relegation from the Premier League.
Liverpool are ready to make a bid for Birmingham City goalkeeper Jack Butland, 19. City need to raise funds and both Liverpool and Merseyside rivals Everton are admirers of the England international.


Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini said his players are "too soft" following their loss to Sunderland.
Roberto Di Matteo and Roy Keane have emerged as early frontrunners to take over at Nottingham Forest following the sacking of Sean O'Driscoll on Boxing Day.


The kick-off between QPR and West Brom at Loftus Road had to be delayed after the West Brom team coach was caught in a traffic jam caused by Boxing Day bargain hunters.