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Today’s press

February 6, 2010 Leave a comment
  • Stelios Parpas (24) has finally become a Steaua player. He will stay at the Bucharest side until the summer, when Steaua has the option to buy the player. Parpas was just a rotation/backup defender for AEL, but coach Dusan Uhrin Jr., who had an experience in Romania as well, at FC Timisoara, explained that there was too much competition and that he preferred more experienced players instead. Unlike Parpas, the other Steaua target from Cyprus, Gora Tall (25), will not switch sides right now, but there’s an open door for another discussion in the summer.
  • CFR Cluj is trying to finalize Roberto De Zerbi‘s (30) arrival from Napoli. The attacking midfielder could be the first Italian to have ever played in Liga I, being demanded by CFR’s coach, Andrea Mandorlini. One big problem is De Zerbi’s wage, as he currently earns around 700.000 EUR, while the top salary at the Romanian club is somewhere in the region of 350.000 EUR.
  • Steaua decided not to retain American midfielder Josh Tudela (25). The player had been trying to impress the coaching staff during the training camp from Antalya, Turkey, and, although he featured in four friendly matches, he failed to convince that he can help the club.
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Traore’s interesting, but that’s never enough to be transferred

January 18, 2010 1 comment

Arsenal, Udinese, Napoli. There are the teams that CFR Cluj presented until now as very interested in signing the Ivorian striker. Back in 2007, when he was playing for Stade D’Abidjan, there was a race between CFR and Sparta Prague and it seems that Traore made a good decision…

In January 2008, he came to Romania, but signed a contract during the summer, when he turned 18. Sent to play in the third division, managed to score there 15 goals in 13 matches and was handed a debut in CFR’s senior team and in the top flight by Dusan Uhrin Jr, on 4th of April 2009. Since then, he played in 19 matches, scoring five goals in the process. He also collected six appearances in the Europa League group stage, scoring two goals (against FC Kobenhavn and, ironically, Sparta Prague!). Although the naumbers aren’t impressive, he is the club’s top scorer in both competitions at this point.

Interesting enough, the guy wasn’t initially on the registration list that was about to be sent to UEFA, but he made it in the final days, after his only second match played at the beginning of the season, when he scored the winner in the 1-0 home victory against Otelul Galati.

The guy has a nice combination of pace and skill for a player of his size, 198 cm and 85 kg, and isn’t the centre-forward type. Instead, he likes to run the channels and to be served ball into feet, which makes sense if you think of Arsenal’s interest, right? He’s also naturally better than most of his opponents in the air, even though he needs to improve in terms of strength, which should help him both in the aerial duels as well as on the ground.

Traore’s estimated value (by his own club) is 4-5 mil. EUR. So, I believe Udinese is out of the question, given the Italians’ famous scouting network and their history of bringing into Serie A cheap talent from Africa and South America. Arsenal? I think the age, not the price would be the problem. Has Wenger gone mad and started to buy such old players already? 🙂 Napoli? Well, I have nothing against it really, although I’d expect the Italians to try and bring in players with a higher profile, given their excellent season and always growing ambitions.

Today’s press

January 5, 2010 Leave a comment
  • According to FIFA agent Cristea Opria, a Top 5 club from 1.Bundesliga apparently offered around 2,5 mil. EUR for Gabriel Torje (Right winger, Dinamo Bucharest, born 1989). Dinamo refused and would say “yes” for 4 mil. EUR.
  • Steaua and FC Vaslui are trying to exchange two key players: central defender and team captain Sorin Ghionea with the prolific midfielder Marko Ljubinkovic. It seems that Ghionea refuses the move and waits for an offer from abroad, having an attractive asking price given his quality, experience and age (only 30): 200.000 EUR.
  • Steaua is trying to sign Bulgarian centre-back Zhivko Zhelev. The 30 years old is out of favor at Otelul Galati and in the last six months of his current contract, but also suspended after he protested for not getting paid according to his contract. The deal will probably finalize, although Otelul refuses to let him go for free at Steaua, but on the other hand will never get 200.000 EUR for a player in a similar situation.
  • Romanian press quotes http://www.tuttomercatoweb.com, who announces Arsenal’s interest for Lacina Traore from CFR Cluj and an offer of 4 mil. EUR. CFR’s president, Iuliu Muresan, denied the rumor, but confirmed the interest from abroad and also a “concrete offer from an important club”. The press talks about Napoli and a failed attempt to sign the promising striker for 1,2 mil. EUR.
  • The Dutch coach Mark Wotte is expected to sign with Universitatea Craiova, after the club’s owner failed to convince former NT coach Victor Piturca. Wotte should get around 150.000 EUR per season. In case the deal won’t be finalized, Craiova also looks at another Dutch trainer – Luc Nijholt.
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