Wednesday's gossip column


Striker Fernando Torres says he would rather move to Spanish side Barcelona, than stay in English football if he is forced to leave Liverpool. The Reds may have to sell Torres, 25, to help repay the club's financial debt with Chelsea and Manchester City interested. (IM Scouting) 
Manchester City are on red alert as Real Madrid's top scorer Gonzalo Higuain has turned down a new contract offer amid reputed interest from the Eastlands outfit.(Daily Mail) 
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that he retains an interest in Brazil and Juventus defensive midfielder Felipe Melo, as he plans for the longer term without the stricken Aaron Ramsey.(The Guardian) 
Wigan and Stoke are keen on Serbian defender Dusko Tosic, who is a free agent after leaving cash-strapped Portsmouth.(The Daily Mail) 
David Beckham will return to to play for LA Galaxy in the United States after the World Cup. The England midfielder, 34, is currently on loan with Italian side AC Milan. (The Sun) 
Everton are leading the chase for West Brom's highly-rated Graham Dorrans. The Scottish midfielder, 22, has hit 13 goals this term. (The Sun) 
Manchester United midfielder Nani has urged manager Sir Alex Ferguson to press ahead with his bid for Sporting Lisbon midfielder Miguel Veloso. Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal are all interested in the 23-year-old.(The Sun) 
Bolton boss Owen Coyle wants to sign United States midfielder Stuart Holden on a full-time deal after his impressive start at the Reebok Stadium. The 24-year-old is on a short-term contract to the end of the season.(Daily Mirror) 


Portsmouth will be offered a staggering £32m rescue deal from the Premier League to pay their tax bill and avoid going bust this season. (Daily Mirror) 
Defender Wayne Bridge will play for England again, according to his Manchester City team-mate Kolo Toure. (The Telegraph) 
Russia's bid to stage the World Cup in 2018 could be set to benefit from the political and financial firepower of Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich. (The Telegraph) 
Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti has poured cold water over reports suggesting he will quit the Blues to take over as Italy boss after this summer's World Cup. (The Sun) 
Meanwhile, Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has revealed he quite fancies the Italian job, but not just yet: "Now I'm thinking only of City. I will be here many years." (The Sun) 
Tottenham midfielder Tom Huddlestone faces a long injury lay-off after a scan revealed he suffered ankle ligament damage against Everton. (The Daily Mail) 



England captain Steven Gerrard says his wife, Alex Curran, will not be at the World Cup in South Africa with him, unless they reach the semi-finals. (Various)