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Mata makes Blues move
Chelsea have confirmed that highly-rated Spain international Juan Mata has joined the club from Valencia, penning a five-year contract.
It was announced on Monday that an agreement had been reached for the 23-year-old, with Valencia having accepted an offer from the Blues.
Personal terms have been thrashed out since then, while a medical has also been passed.
Mata is now all clear to open a new chapter in his career in England and admits he is looking forward to getting started.
The World Cup winner told the club’s official website: “Right from the first moment there have been good feelings all around me. Training has been great and the players are a great group to train with.
"Valencia was a big club anyway but I have left to join a bigger club and it is all about the opportunity to win trophies and I have that here."
Nasri completes City move
Manchester City have sealed the signing of Samir Nasri from Arsenal on a four-year deal after he successfully underwent a medical.
The Gunners announced on Tuesday that they had agreed to sell the Frenchman to their Premier League rivals as he had less than a year remaining on his contract at the Emirates Stadium.
Nasri had played for Arsenal in their 2-0 defeat to Liverpool at the weekend but has now completed a switch to the Etihad Stadium for a fee in the region of £23million.
Roberto Mancini will be delighted to have landed Nasri after identifying him earlier in the summer as somebody that could strengthen City’s midfield.
Atletico agree Falcao deal
Atletico Madrid have announced that they are to sign Colombian striker Falcao for 40million euros (£34.7m) from Porto.
The highly-rated striker is regarded as one of Europe’s deadliest marksmen, with his strike ratio in Portugal close to a goal every game.
In total he netted 73 times in just 88 appearances for Porto.
He was reported to be a target for Chelsea this summer, following the arrival of Andre Villas-Boas at Stamford Bridge.
The former Porto boss was expected to raid his former employers for their top stars, with Falcao believed to be top of his wish list.
Spain hit by strike
The opening round of the Primera Liga season has been postponed because of strike action by the players.
The latest campaign in Spain was due to get under way on Saturday but authorities have been forced to shelve the schedule due to the ongoing dispute.
Negotiations between the Spanish Football League (LFP) and the country’s players’ union (AFE) broke down on Wednesday.
Representatives of the two organisations held a meeting in a bid to resolve the issue, which is related to wage structures in Spanish football, but failed to reach an agreement.
Wenger ready to play Nasri
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger claims he is ready to play Samir Nasri against Liverpool despite reports the midfielder is on the verge of a move to Manchester City.
Nasri has been included in the squad for Saturday’s showdown with Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium after recovering from the illness that forced him to miss last weekend’s draw at Newcastle.
City are locked in talks with Arsenal as they try to strike a deal for Nasri and Roberto Mancini confirmed earlier on Friday that he is hopeful of finalising the move soon for the France international.
However, Wenger insists he is ready to name Nasri in his starting line-up against Liverpool as he is short of options in midfield for the visit of Kenny Dalglish’s men.
"The only thing I can say is that Nasri is in the squad tomorrow and available to be picked and play," said Wenger.
Asked if he had any hesitation in playing Nasri against Liverpool, Wenger added: “Not at all, because one thing I don’t question at all is the commitment of Samir Nasri for this club.
"Transfers can happen, we are professional people, but every day since he has arrived here and every day in pre-season, he has worked with fantastic spirit in training."
Adebayor under Spurs talks
Harry Redknapp has confirmed Tottenham Hotspur are in talks with Manchester City regarding a deal for Emmanuel Adebayor.
The former Arsenal striker is surplus to requirements at City after spending the second half of last season on loan at Real Madrid.
The 27-year-old had previously been keen on a return to the Santiago Bernabeu, but could now be offered the chance to join his old club’s arch rivals.
Spurs boss Redknapp revealed last month that he would be interested in signing the Togo forward, but stressed it would only be a loan deal.
Negotiations with City have reportedly been ongoing for some time, with Adebayor’s reported £170,000 a week wage packet proving to be the only real stumbling block.
Redknapp said: “The chairman is talking to Man City about the player but where they (the negotiations) are at, I genuinely don’t know.”
Adebayor scored twice against Tottenham for Real in the Champions League quarter-final first leg clash between the two teams at the Bernabeu last season.
During that match Spurs fans chanted abusive songs at the former Arsenal marksman, but the player himself said this summer the songs would not put him off signing for Redknapp’s team.
An expectant Anfield was left disappointed as Kenny Dalglish’s much changed Liverpool kicked off the new Premier League season with a 1-1 draw at home to Sunderland.
Liverpool’s Luis Suarez missed from the penalty spot before heading his side into a first half lead, only for debutant Sebastian Larsson to silence the Kop after the break with a majestic leveller on the volley.
Top flight new boys Norwich and QPR experienced mixed fortunes on their respective returns to the big time. While Norwich were grinding out a creditable point on their travels to Wigan, Neil Warnock’s Hoops were being dismantled by a Bolton side who strolled to a 4-0 victory in the capital.
Wolves were not as emphatic but no less impressive as they came from behind to claim a 2-1 win at Blackburn which will delight Mick McCarthy.
The day’s only goalless stalemate ensued in the capital as Fulham drew a blank against a resolute Aston Villa, who marked Alex McLeish’s bow in the dugout with a decent point.
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Cesc deal done!
Barcelona have finalised an agreement for the transfer of Cesc Fabregas from Arsenal, according to reports in Spain.
Arsene Wenger earlier revealed that he hoped the long-running saga would be resolved very soon and later confirmed his skipper would play no part in Saturday’s Premier League opener against Newcastle at St James’ Park.
It is now being reported in Spain that Fabregas is set to be officially presented as a Barcelona player over the weekend on a five-year contract.
The deal is understood to have finally been done following a protracted pursuit and the midfielder is travelling to link up with his new team-mates ahead of the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup against Real Madrid.
Fabregas has never hidden his affection for Barca after starting his career with the Catalan club as a schoolboy, before moving to Arsenal’s youth ranks in 2003.
He quickly emerged as a special talent and over the years has blossomed into one of the finest performers in the Premier League.
Watching Fabregas’ continued development from afar, Barcelona became interested in bringing him back to Camp Nou and speculation intensified during the transfer window of summer 2010.
A move did not materialise last summer and the Gunners were again determined to hold on to him this year, but Barca stepped up the chase and a number of their players publicly called for Fabregas to sign.