Transfer market

SHAUN WRIGHT-Phillips has, as widely anticipated, joined Chelsea in a 35 million euro deal and José Mourinho is continuing to pursue Lyon’s Michael Essien.

Portugal defender Jorge Andrade looks odds-on to swap Deportivo la Coruna for Liverpool, with Milan Baros going the other way, while Luís Figo negotiations are still alive after a deal with Inter Milan broke down. One who did not escape Rafael Benitez’s grasp is Peter Crouch. The 6’7” 24-year-old striker has signed on at Anfield for 10 million euros from relegated Southampton. Still in England, Arsenal are struggling to secure the services of Sevilla star, forward Julio Baptista. In competition with Spurs and Barcelona, the Gunners have gone back with an improved offer for the third time – believed to be almost 23 million euros.

In Portugal, Benfica have started a mini clear out. Norwegian international, Azar Karadas, has joined Portsmouth while out of favour keeper, Yannick, has been ‘parked’ in Marseilles. Both players are initially on loan. Sporting have lost Nigerian international Enarkarhire to Dynamo Moscow, making the Portuguese legionnaires in Russia’s capital 10 now, but have snatched Santos’ Deivid who scored 21 goals in the Brazilian championship last season. The 25-year-old has put his name to a four-year contract.