The following is a roundup of soccer stories from U.K. newspapers, with clickable links to the Web.
City Chase Ramires
Ramires, who has a 30 million pounds ($46 million) buy-out clause in his contract, has also sparked interest from Real Madrid, Chelsea and Fiorentina after his appearances for Brazil in the World Cup in South Africa. The midfielder joined Benfica last summer for a fee of 5 million pounds from Brazilian team Cruzeiro.
City Seal Balotelli Deal
Manchester City has struck a 23-million pound transfer deal for Inter Milan striker Mario Balotelli, the Daily Mail reported. That takes the club’s spending spree this summer to close to 100 million pounds, the paper said.
The Italian club had wanted 34 million pounds for the teenager, who fell out of favor last season with fans and former Inter manager Jose Mourinho because of his behavior on the field and the training ground. Balotelli had made his Inter Milan first-team debut under City manager Roberto Mancini two-and-a- half years ago.
Ferguson Plans Ozil Swoop
Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson is trying to sign Germany and Werder Bremen player Mesut Ozil for the second time in his managerial career, the Sun reported. Ferguson failed to sign Ozil when he was a teenager.
Bremen initially asked for 20 million pounds for the 21- year-old, who has a year left on his contract. The club has since dropped its asking price to 8 million pounds.
Liverpool’s N’Gog Up For Sale
Liverpool has put French striker David N’Gog up for sale for 6 million pounds as the club tries to raise more money to buy new players, the Daily Mirror reported.
Liverpool is keen to buy Nice player Loic Remy, who is valued at 14.3 million pounds.
Spurs in Race for Raul
Real Madrid player Raul, who is available on a free transfer, may move to Tottenham Hotspur next season, the Sun reported.
The 33-year-old, who scored 44 goals in 102 caps for Spain, prefers to end his career in England, the paper quoted his agent Barry O’Connor as saying. Newcastle is also interested in signing the all-time Real Madrid top scorer.