Saturday 4 February 2023 Dublin: 9°C
Stephen Pond/EMPICS Sport QPR will target Chelsea's Didier Drogba.
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The Departures Lounge: your daily transfer gossip round-up
QPR are about to hand Mark Hughes a truckload of cash and let him loose on the transfer market. Now where’s Roque Santa Cruz when you need him?

SO SPARKY IS back in management and according to reports, he has been given a few quid to spend too.

QPR confirmed Mark Hughes as their new boss this afternoon after Sunday’s announcement that Neil Warnock’s reign had come to an end.

One of his first moves at the west London club will be to take Tony Fernandes’s millions and target an established Premier League striker, with Didier Drogba, Darren Bent and Andy Johnson all believed to be on his radar.

Shoring up the defence is also a priority and although they have already had a bid for Blackburn Rovers Chris Samba turned down, Hughes will make another attempt as well as enquiring about Chelsea’s Brazilian centre-half Alex, Sebastien Bassong and Wayne Bridge as he looks to spend the mooted €36m war chest.

With Roberto Mancini complaining to just about anyone who will listen that, despite the riches at his disposal, he is short on bodies, one player who he will certainly be happy to see the back of is Carlos Tevez.

The Argentinian misfit could be leaning towards the blue side of Milan and a move to Inter with talks reportedly being held after the Nerazzuri’s club president Massimo Moratti confirmed their interest.

The player himself is said to prefer a switch to the Serie A champions and we all know the man who has been keeping himself busy with a couple rounds of golf in his homeland generally gets what he wants.

One former Inter striker (seamless, I know) Robbie Keane trained with Aston Villa yesterday ahead of a proposed loan move which is likely to be announced as a done deal sometime today.

Elsewhere, Manchester United’s 18-month pursuit of Greek full-back Vasilis Torosidis could see them activate his €7m buy-out clause after United scouts took in his performance for Olympiakos on Sunday night.

In a transfer rumour that scares us to even think about, Real Madrid want to add more character to a club who already have Jose Mourinho and Cristiano Ronaldo on their books and are considering a swoop for Liverpool’s Luis Suarez.

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Are they insistent on becoming the pantomime villains of the El Clasico?

Having signed Peter Crouch at the start of the season, Stoke believe they are on to a winning formula and are now interested in partnering him with VVV-Venlo’s beanpole Michael Uchebo.

The 6ft 8in Nigerian striker is out of contract at the end of the season and will have a trial with the Potters this month.

Harry Redknapp wants Marseille’s €24m-rated Loic Remy having missed out on signing him from Nice a year and a half ago, while Spurs William Gallas could be in for one final pay-day with a move to Qatar and Swansea will take Josh McEachran on loan for the rest of the season.

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