Chelsea could lose out to Shakhtar in Taison battle – report

Chelsea could miss out on Taison because his club’s new owner is reluctant to sell to Roman Abramovich, according to The Sun.

Shakhtar Donetsk are now reported to be close to signing the Brazilian midfielder despite Chelsea having had an offer accepted by Metalist Kharviv.

Blues supremo Abramovich’s good relationship with former Metalist owner Oleksandr Yaroslavsky is said to have been a factor in the clubs previously agreeing terms.

But last month Yaroslavsky sold to Serhiy Kurchenko, who, it is claimed, wants the full amount that would trigger a release clause in Taison’s contract, reportedly £12.4m.

The Sun also say interim boss Rafael Benitez accepts he has no chance of landing the Chelsea manager’s job at the end of the season following the cup defeat against Swansea.

The Daily Mail say Ashley Cole’s agent has flown to Spain with a view to speaking to Real Madrid about a possible move for the Chelsea star.

QPR are considering signing 6ft 4in striker Habib Habibou from Belgian club Zulte Waregem, according to the Mail.

Habibou, who was born in Bria in Central African Republic but has a French passport, is in London and is apparently hopeful of securing a move.

Aston Villa defender Richard Dunne is again linked with a move to Loftus Road, this time by the Daily Mirror.

The 33-year-old Republic of Ireland centre-back, who has not played since Euro 2012 because of a hip problem, is reported to be a target for LA Galaxy and New York Red Bulls.

Dunne’s contract expires at the end of the season.

Fulham are set to make the first move in the race to sign Birmingham and England goalkeeper Jack Butland, the Mirror say.

Liverpool, Everton and Manchester City are also said to be interested in the 19-year-old.

But it is suggested that Whites boss Martin Jol is ready to firm up his apparent interest and spark a bidding war between the clubs.

This page is regularly updated.



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