David Moyes is already besmirching the memory of Sir Alex Ferguson by looking at new midfielders. Ferguson famously last signed a midfielder in 1992 and now Manchester United are after two of the buggers from Barcelona. Cesc Fábregas – that one's still in the pipeline – and they're also close to completing a £17m deal for Thiago Alcântara, who has grown tired with spending two whole seasons behind Xaviesta in the pecking order, which clearly bodes well.
Arsenal have spent the past few years signing waifs, strays and players who fall just below the required standard – they've been trying to prove a very tedious point, you see, on account of philosophy – but it seems that's all about to change. This summer, Arsenal mean business. A club record £22m deal is in place for Real Madrid's Gonzalo Higuaín, who will earn £150,000 a week, and having got a taste of the good stuff, Arsenal's second largest shareholder, Alisher Usmanov, is urging Arsène Wenger to put in a bid for Wayne Rooney too. Mind you, old habits die hard: Arsenal are also thinking about a £6m deal for Dinamo Zagreb's 17-year-old defender Tin Jedvaj.
Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. The love between a man and a Cuban cigar. Mark Hughes and Roque Santa Cruz. All are some of the steamiest, most intense relationships of our time and now Hughes wants to rekindle that flickering flame and sign Santa Cruz for a third time. However Stoke face competition for the striker – who is a free agent – from Hamburg, who have no interest in the notion of romance.
Liverpool's move for Henrikh Mkhitaryan, who has been featured so often this summer that the Mill no longer needs to look up his name, has hit a snag after it turned out the Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder is also owned by a third party. When has that ever caused any bother in the Premier League? Liverpool will have to content themselves with the Ajax defender Toby Alderweireld instead.
Joe Effing Kinnear has graciously seen fit to agree with Alan Pardew's plans to bring Darren Bent and James Tomkins to Newcastle. Kinnear famously signed both players for nothing when he was Wimbledon manager and then sold them for millions to Aston Villa and West Ham respectively. Sunderland want Vito Mannone to replace Liverpool-bound Simon Mignolet, while West Brom are eyeing Yossi Benayoun on a free transfer. And that's your lot. A short one today, we'll grant you that much, but the Mill's computer crashed halfway through, so this has largely been written from memory. You can almost smell the Pulitzer.