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European transfer update: Including Verdu and Bastos

Southampton, Fulham, West Ham, Chelsea and Liverpool targets all feature.

With just days left before the transfer deadline Juventus, Lyon, Schalke 04, Galatasaray, Hoffenheim and Bordeaux are all getting down to business.

A deal for Didier Drogba to make his move to Galatasaray from Shanghai Shenhua has been confirmed. The former Chelsea striker was also courting interest from Juventus and AC Milan but has opted to join fellow Ivorian Emmanuel Eboue in Istanbul. He has signed an 18-month-contract.

Joan Verdu has announced his intention to stay with Espanyol. The clubs star player is currently in the final six months of his contract and has been linked with a shock switch to the Seattle Sounders of the MLS; and more recently to Southampton. However he has now reportedly indicated to his agent that he wishes to sign a new deal to keep him in Barcelona beyond the summer.

Juventus have won the race for talented Ecuadorian teenager Jose Francisco Cevallos. The 18-year-old has signed a loan-deal with the potential for that move to be made permanent in the summer. He has caught the eye with several head-turning performances for LDU Quito in his homeland.

Serie A strugglers Pescara have strengthened their chances of survival by bringing in Giuseppe Sculli from Lazio. The 31-year-old has not featured in any games for the club this season and is a former Italian under-21 international.

Slovakian youngster Nobert Gyomber has completed a move to Italian side Catania. He will join up with the Sicilian side in the summer from current club Dukla Baska Bystrica.

Juventus are still in the market for Lyon striker Lisandro Lopez. The Argentine was thought to no longer be a target after the Bianconeri completed a deal for Nicolas Anelka. However they are reportedly ready to approach Lyon once again about the possibility of bringing him in on loan. The move will only go ahead if Juve manage to offload Fabio Quagliarella.

Schalke 04 are now expected to snap up a deal for Michel Bastos. There has been difficulty over negotiations with Lyon about the deal but after Lewis Holtby made an earlier than expected exit to Tottenham Hotspur the German outfit look ready to sign the Brazilian international on an 18-month-loan deal.

Mainz have replaced the outgoing Eugen Polanski with Danish international Niki Zimling. The Bundesliga side have snapped him up from Club Brugge after Polanski joined Hoffenheim over the weekend.

Young Finnish international Teemu Pukki may also be leaving Schalke this January. Previous interest has been noted from Hannover while the latest news from his homeland is claiming that Hoffenheim are looking to bring him in to help with their relegation fight.

Bordeaux have signed promising teenager Diego Rolan from Uruguayan side Defensor.


images: © achimh, © Ronnie Macdonald

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