Paulo Sousa has been in talks with Cognini, Corvino, and the Della Valles about extending his contract by a year. While it's early days, it's also a promising sign that all sides have publicly agreed that keeping the project together is in everyone's best interests.
Spezia are hard on the heels of Luca Lezzerini, but it seems that the young custodian is no longer for sale. The deal would be for a season long loan, leaving the door open for him to prove himself as the number one of the future. In news of former number ones, a certain Norberto Neto has told the press that he's just the man to replace Pepe Reina at Napoli, demonstrating the humility, self-awareness, and loyalty that we've all come to love.
Another day, another reminder that Torino really want Nenad Tomović. Moving on, Perugia are working to bring Primavera star Gianluca Mancini back on loan; after his failed move there last season resulted in a return to the Primavera, it seems likely that there would be assurances about playing time for him. Rightback Luca Zanon's market remains hot as well, with Prato the latest of a long string of Lega Pro teams hoping to get him on loan.
Remember when Sven van Beek was nearly a done deal? Apparently, talks with Feyenoord have collapsed, since Fiorentina wanted him on loan and the Rotterdam club wanted an outright purchase. Corvino has a few fallback options, though. According to the Gazzetta dello Sport, Fiorentina are preparing a bid for Marseille's 21 year old Dutch U21 centerback Karim Rekik. La Nazione claims that the Viola have also lodged a €3 million for Juninho of Coritiba, but it's unclear if this is just old news, or if it's a separate deal than the previous €3 million bid. Lyon and Dinamo Kyiv are also interested, so time is a factor. Finally, Costa Rica international Giancarlo González says he's leaving Palermo, and, if you believe Central American rag Diez, Fiorentina have lodged a bid, although Zenit St. Petersburg are monitoring him as well.
Even with all the interest in Milan Badelj, there haven't been any offers for him yet. According to La Stampa, his price tag sits at €12 million, which is at the higher end of the range we've heard all summer. He's not the Balkan midfielder who's actually moved, though. That would be Marko Bakić, who's now a Benfica player for a bargain price of €1.4 million. He'll join Braga for a year on loan.
Empoli president Fabrizio Corsi clearly doesn't understand his neighbors. He says that Riccardo Saponara is a major target for Fiorentina, but also says that the midfielder will cost €20 million. He seems completely oblivious to how contradictory these statements are. 21 year old Dinamo Zagreb midfielder Marko Rog (who's managed 4 caps in Croatia's packed midfield, which is pretty darn impressive) has long been linked to a Napoli move. Gazzamercato.it (about which I know nothing) claims that Corvino's in touch with his agent in an effort to hijack the move at the last instant. Finally, the Viola still haven't thrown in the towel on Ljubomir Fejsa, despite Benfica rejecting their offer for the Serbian enforcer. Unless Pantaleo manages a real Corvinato, though, this one's probably dead.
Luis Enrique has declared that Cristian Tello is on his way out at Barcelona, and has recalled winger Joan Gamper from Ciutat Deportiva to replace him. With both the Blaugrana and the Viola agreed on another loan year, the final fee is the only sticking point, but that should be resolved in the next few days. The only caveat is that Barca could decide to use him as a makeweight in the Andres Gomes deal if the Gigliati prove difficult to deal with. And, in the interest of keeping everything updated, former Primavera winger Axel Gulin has been released from his contract and is looking at various Serie B clubs.
With Ondrej Duda having officially sealed a move to Hertha Berlin, the winger du jour is Lazar Marković. While Schalke 04 are interested, Nazione believes that Corvino's been in touch with his agent. Any move, though, would have to be a loan, due to the incredible €35 million buyout clause in the Serbian's Liverpool contract, which the Reds would surely be willing to negotiate. And, for bookkeeping purposes, Juventus, Inter Milan, and AC Milan are all trying to figure out how to bring Juan Cuadrado back from Chelsea. The Blues want at least €30 million (yes, Cuadrado is cheaper than Marković, which MAKES NO FREAKING SENSE), so it's unlikely, but worth keeping an eye on.
And now for the section that's got all the drama. The latest is that Giuseppe Rossi is now a key protagonist for Paulo Sousa (maybe they're both Team Instinct). Bologna have resumed their admiration, but are unable to afford his wages, making a move highly unlikely. Mario Gómez, meanwhile, continues to waffle. Interest from Espanyol jibes with his stated desire to play in Spain, but West Ham have more money. Perhaps the best option for everyone would be a sale to Atlético Madrid, who've also expressed interest in him. With Fiorentina similarly interested in powerful 23 year old striker Borja Bastón, whom Atleti have valued at €15 million, a swap deal of some type looks like it could benefit all parties. That'd probably be too easy a solution, so here's some Borja Bastón highlights.