Gossip column: Suarez, Sanchez, Balotelli, Vermaelen, Lovren

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The Uruguayan Football Association claims striker Luis Suarez, 27, is the victim of a smear campaign by the Italians, the English media and the Brazilian hosts after he appeared to bite Giorgio Chiellini. Guardianexternal-link

Former Germany goalkeeper Oliver Kahn, 45, who bit Borussia Dortmund's Heiko Herrlich during a Bundesliga match, thinks "enormous pressure" drove Suarez to allegedly bite Chiellini. Sun (subscription only)external-link

Luis Suarez of Uruguay
Luis Suarez did not train with the Uruguay squad on Wednesday

Wimbledon champion Andy Murray, 27, believes there is something "not quite right" about Suarez. Guardianexternal-link

A number of Football Association board members want manager Roy Hodgson, 66, to explain England's World Cup exit.Daily Mailexternal-link

Midfielder Jack Wilshere, 22, has warned England's new generation of players that time is already running out on their international careers.Telegraphexternal-link


Barcelona are still interested in Liverpool striker Suarez and are ready to offer an £80m player-plus-cash deal that could include wingers Alexis Sanchez, 25, and Pedro, 26.Daily Mirrorexternal-link

Daily Mirror back page
Luis Suarez is linked with a move to Barcelona

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has denied any interest in signing AC Milan and Italy striker Mario Balotelli, 23.Daily Mailexternal-link

Arsenal have rejected Manchester United's opening bid for 28-year-old captain Thomas Vermaelen. Daily Starexternal-link

Tottenham are keen to sign defender Dejan Lovren, 24, from Southampton. The Croatia international also interests Liverpool. Daily Mirrorexternal-link

Arsenal and Tottenham target Javier Hernandez, 26, has dropped another hint that he is set to quit Manchester United once the World Cup is over. Daily Expressexternal-link

Arsenal and Liverpool want Sevilla defender Federico Fazio, 27, who could cost up to £8m. Daily Starexternal-link

Hull City have opened talks with Tottenham over a £4m deal for 30-year-old captain Michael Dawson. Evening Standardexternal-link

West Brom are ready to make a £6m bid to sign AS Monaco striker Emmanuel Riviere, 24.Express and Starexternal-link

Argentine winger Eric Lamela, 22, will stay at Tottenham despite a first season at White Hart Lane affected by injuries and indifferent form.Sun (subscription only)external-link

Michael Owen
Michael Owen was 18 when he scored for England against Argentina in the 1998 World Cup


Former England striker Michael Owen says young players are left to play in "soft" under-21 football and the best should be promoted to the first team by the age of 20.Daily Expressexternal-link

GLOBAL GOSSIP (sourced by BBC Monitoring)

Manchester City say Atletico Madrid's £12m bid for striker Alvaro Negredo, 28 is inadequate and they will not listen to any offer below £24m. Marcaexternal-link (in Spanish)

Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone says he will never sell Uruguayan defender Diego Godin, 28. ASexternal-link (in Spanish)

Gabon striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's father has confirmed his 25-year-old son will turn down a £20m move to Roma and stay at Borussia Dortmund. Bildexternal-link (in German)

Serie A side Atlanta have signed Belgian striker Nicolas Napol, 18, from Lorient. Tuttosport external-link(in Italian)


England and Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney on Twitter:external-link "Gutted to be home but I can't wait to see my wife and children."

Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge tweeted:external-link "Back home. Was an honour to play and score in my 1st World Cup. Thanks to all the fans for your support."

Everton midfielder Ross Barkley wrote: external-link "Just want to thank the England fans for the support they gave us throughout our time in Brazil. They are the best in the world and we will do everything to deliver for them in the future."


A Brazilian TV network broadcast footage of Ghana's $3m appearance money being transported in a huge convoy of police cars to the team hotel.TV Globoexternal-link (in Portuguese)

West Brom have offered season ticket refunds to fans angered by the appointment of Alan Irvine as head coach. Express and Starexternal-link

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