Thursday's gossip column


Liverpool's Dutch winger Ryan Babel wants to join Ajax on loan as he says being left out of the team at Anfield could cost him a place at the World Cup. (The Sun) 
Spartak Moscow were put off buying Tottenham striker Roman Pavlyuchenko on deadline day because Spurs wanted almost £4m more than they paid for him a year ago. (Daily Star) 
West Ham are looking at strikers Mark Viduka and Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink, who are both available as free agents (Daily Express).
They also tried to sign Benjani from Manchester City on deadline day but could not track down his agent (Daily Mail). 
Hull are also interested in signing former Celtic striker Vennegoor of Hesselink (Daily Mirror).
Middlesbrough striker Afonso Alves has not yet joined Qatari club Al Saad but remains hopeful as their transfer window is still open until 15 September. (The Guardian) 


Injury-plagued Owen Hargreaves has been named in Manchester United's Champions League squad. (The Sun) 
Portsmouth goalkeeper David James has been told to keep his mouth shut and carry on playing after complaining that being at the Premier League's bottom club could cost him a place at next summer's World Cup. (Daily Star) 
Arsenal's Nicklas Bendtner turned down Barcelona, Inter Milan and Bayern Munich to sign a new deal at the Emirates, says his father, who is also his agent. (Daily Mirror) 
New Aston Villa signing Richard Dunne says he believes the team is good enough to earn a Champions League spot. (Daily Telegraph) 
West Ham's business strategy under their former Icelandic owners was "fundamentally flawed", says the club's finance director. (The Guardian) 
Scotland goalkeeper Craig Gordon says many players would consider the two-match ban given to Arsenal's Eduardo for diving a price worth paying for the potential rewards a dive may bring their team (Various). 
Accrington must pay a back tax bill of £308,000 in the next eight weeks or they face a winding-up order (Daily Star).
Barnsley are interested in MK Dons' boss Paul Ince as their next manager (The Sun). 


New Bolton signing Ivan Klasnic has had two kidney transplants (The Times) 
Injury-prone Celtic defender Mark Wilson says he cannot believe the club gave him a new deal after his injury record (Daily Record). 
Scotland assistant coach Terry Butcher (on photo-right) says their vital World Cup qualifier against Macedonia on Saturday is a bigger game than England's 1990 World Cup semi-final against West Germany. (The Guardian)