Tuesday's gossip column
Manchester United are hoping a breakdown in contract talks between forward Cristiano Ronaldo, 28, and Real Madrid will open a door for the Premier League club to bring the Portuguese star back to Old Trafford.
Chelsea are in talks to pay £10m for 17-year-old left-back Luke Shaw in the summer and immediately loan him back to Southampton.
Borussia Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski, 24, is ready to quit the German club in the summer, alerting Manchester United who are believed to be interested in the Pole.
Blackburn are looking to bolster their injury-hit squad with a loan move for a winger after Colin Kazim-Richards, 26, joined Martin Olsson, 24, Lee Williamson, 30, and Josh King, 21, on the sidelines.
Al-Ain and United Arab Emirates winger Omar Abdulrahman, 21, says he was unable to move to Manchester City after a successful summer trial because of work permit regulations.
Arsenal face competition from Italian trio Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan to secure fiery Athletic Bilbao defender Fernando Amorebieta, 27, on a free transfer at the end of the season.
The Gunners are also chasing Eintracht Frankfurt midfielder Sebastian Rode, 22, who will cost them £7.5m.
Manchester City are prepared to spend £17m to land Sevilla midfielder Geoffrey Kondogbia. The 20-year-old France youth international was a target for Reading last season before he opted to move to Spain.
Pep Guardiola employed a detective agency to keep tabs on players such as Gerard Pique, Ronaldinho, Deco and Samuel Eto'o during his time in charge at Barcelona.
The president of the German Football Association, Wolfgang Niersbach, has officially declared the country's interest in hosting matches during the 2020 European Championship which Uefa has declared will be played across the continent.
Chelsea are in disarray both on and off the pitch, with interim manager Rafael Benitez unhappy with the lack of leadership and personality in his squad, while the players have no faith in the 52-year-old's methods and practices.
Benitez is believed to have been involved in a training ground bust-up with 32-year-old Chelsea captain John Terry.
Aston Villa attacker Andreas Weimann, 21, has rejected a four-year contract extension as he was unhappy with the terms on offer.
Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany's return from a month out with a calf injury is being troubled by a similar issue in his other leg, but the Premier League champions hope the 26-year-old's new complaint is not as serious.
League Cup winners Swansea have received another boost as left-back Neil Taylor, 24, is close to a return despite an initial prognosis when he broke his ankle in September that he would be out for the season.
Arsenal are under fresh pressure to spend big in the summer after revealing cash reserves of £123.3m on Monday.
Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel, 28, has opened the door to a summer exit from Anfield after suggesting manager Brendan Rodgers has misled him over his removal from the starting line-up.
Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, 28, has taken a break from his football duties to try his hand at being a pilot.