Gossip column: Cuadrado, Pogba, Costa, Henderson, Blind

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TRANSFER GOSSIP

Chelsea have entered talks with Fiorentina over a deal to bring in Colombia winger Juan Cuadrado, 26, during January. (Guardian)external-link

Sun
Emmanuel Adebayor, Diego Costa and Jordan Henderson dominate the Sun's back page

The Premier League leaders have increased their efforts to sign Cuadrado after having a £20.6m bid rejected on Wednesday. (Times - subscription required)external-link

Chelsea are preparing to offset the arrival of Cuadrado with the sale of winger Mohamed Salah, 22, or forward Andre Schurrle, 24. (Independent)external-link

Germany international Schurrle is set for a move back to his native country to join Wolfsburg. (Daily Express)external-link

But Fiorentina coach Vincenzo Montella says there is no chance of Cuadrado moving to Stamford Bridge. (Goal.com)external-link

Chelsea are also planning a £40m move for Juventus' 21-year-old France midfielder Paul Pogba, who left Manchester United on a free transfer in 2012. (Daily Express)external-link

Wigan Athletic are set to reject a second improved offer of more than £4m for 23-year-old winger Callum McManaman from West Brom. (Sky Sports)external-link

Spanish side Valencia are ready to try to beat Liverpool to the signing of Manchester City and England midfielder James Milner, 29. (Daily Mirror)external-link

Manchester United have not received a single official enquiry in January about Brazilian midfielder Anderson, 26, who has not played for the club since August and is officially for sale. (Daily Mail)external-link

Times
The Times' back page: Juan Cuadrado, Andros Townsend and a fiendishly difficult crossword

Manchester United have opened discussions to sign 16-year-old Paraguayan striker Sergio Diaz from Cerro Porteno. (Tuttomercatoweb)external-link

Swansea are looking at Blackburn striker Jordan Rhodes, 24, as a potential replacement for Ivory Coast forward Wilfried Bony, 26, who has signed for Manchester City. (Daily Telegraph)external-link

QPR want to sign Italy striker Dani Osvaldo, 29, to save them from relegation - even though Southampton loaned him out to Inter Milan after he headbutted a team-mate. (Daily Mirror)external-link

Newcastle plan to compete with Arsenal for the signature of Ipswich's 21-year-old defender Tyrone Mings. (Daily Mail)external-link

Sampdoria president Massimo Ferrero says the signing of striker Samuel Eto'o, 33, is being held up because "nobody can figure out who is in charge at Everton". (Sky Sport Italia)external-link

West Brom's Greece striker Georgios Samaras, 29, is set to join Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal on a six-month loan with a view to a permanent deal. (Express and Star, Wolverhampton)external-link

Arsenal will face competition from Manchester United to sign 24-year-old Villarreal centre-back Gabriel Paulista, who is valued at £16m by the Spanish club. (London Evening Standard)external-link

OTHER GOSSIP

Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson and Chelsea striker Diego Costa had to be separated after confronting each other in the tunnel at the end of Tuesday's Capital One Cup semi-final first leg. (Guardian)external-link

Daily Express
More Costa and Henderson on the Daily Express back page, and a possible Chelsea move for Paul Pogba

Manchester United's Dutch midfielder Daley Blind, 24, says former Old Trafford full-back-turned-television-pundit Gary Neville was wrong to criticise his style of play. (Manchester Evening News)external-link

Newcastle face a compensation bill of more than £2m if their next permanent boss decides to remove head coach John Carver, first-team coach Steve Stone and goalkeeping coach Andy Woodman. (Newcastle Chronicle)external-link

Carver is not up to the job of managing Newcastle, according to the club's former striker Mick Quinn. (Daily Star)external-link

Newcastle's plan to make former Arsenal midfielder Remi Garde their new boss is off and Derby County manager Steve McClaren is their new target. (Sun - subscription required)external-link

Portuguese forward Bebe, 24 - on loan at La Liga side Cordoba from Benfica - has admitted he thought Manchester United were joking when they signed him for £7.4m in 2010. (Marca)external-link

Chelsea thought they had secured the signing of Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard in 2005, according to Reading manager Steve Clarke - who was Jose Mourinho's assistant at Stamford Bridge at the time. (Talksport)external-link

Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling, 20, says he is happy to shoulder the club's goalscoring burden and is adapting well to his new central role at Anfield. (Liverpool Echo)external-link

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini is confident midfielder Frank Lampard, 36, will be fit to face former club Chelsea next week despite suffering an injury scare in a friendly against Hamburg in Abu Dhabi.(The Times - subscription required)external-link

AFCON 2015 GOSSIP

Equatorial Guinean fans and police engaged in running battles outside the stadium in Bata after supporters were denied entry to the match against Burkina Faso. (Kenya's Daily Nation)external-link

Gabonese media have accused the team of being "paralysed by fear" after the Panthers suffered a disappointing 1-0 defeat by Congo. (GabonEco.com - in French)external-link

BEST OF SOCIAL MEDIA

Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling made light of Chelsea defender John Terry's bizarre tackle on him during Tuesday's Capital One Cup semi-final first leg - by posting on Instagramexternal-link a mocked-up photo of the two of them in a wrestling ring.

Chico Flores
Chico Flores' haircut, 2015 style

Comedian Kevin Bridges - a Celtic fan - tweeted his delightexternal-link after former Dundee United midfielder Ryan Gauld scored twice for Sporting Lisbon - even though they lost 3-2 at Belenenses in a Portuguese League Cup tie.

Former Swansea defender Chico Flores, now with Qatari club Lekhwiya, showed off his drastic new haircut on Twitter. "New style," he posted.external-link

Huddersfield defender Anthony Gerrard has criticised the behaviour of some parents at youth football matches, tweeting:external-link "Watching my lad's football, some of the parents are so bitter and twisted towards other kids it's unreal! Let them play and enjoy it. Wow."

AND FINALLY...

Former Chelsea and Celtic midfielder Craig Burley has had Fernando Torres' face tattooed on his arm after losing a bet that the striker would not score for Atletico Madrid against Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey. (ESPN FC)external-link

Manchester United are dealing with an infestation of mice at Old Trafford, linked to the ground's canal-side location, according to a hygiene report. (Daily Mail)external-link

Only 10% of Manchester United shirt sales happened in Manchester last year, according to a sports retail company - but Manchester City sold only 5% of their shirts in the city. (Eurosport)external-link