A free daily digest of the biggest news stories of the day - and the best features from our website
Thank you for signing up to TheWeek. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.
Chelsea are "ready to raid" Real Madrid in a bold bid to bring Gareth Bale back to England. According to the Daily Express, the Blues are eyeing up the Welsh wingman just 15 months after he left White Hart Lane for the bright lights of the Bernabeu.
Since that record £85m deal, Bale has scored 28 goals in 58 appearances and was a member of the Real squad that lifted the Champions League last season. But the Express claims that that Bale's place in the starting line-up is no longer guaranteed what with the rise of Isco, and as a result he might be offloaded next summer – provided Chelsea cough up enough cash.
The Express notes that Italian website Tuttomercatoweb also claims Chelsea have signalled an interest and are one of the few clubs in Europe with the funds to meet an asking price that is unlikely to be any lower than the astronomical sum Real paid Tottenham in the summer of 2013.
Subscribe to The Week
Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.
Still with Chelsea and Talksport says that Andre Schurrle has distanced himself from rumours in some of the more scurrilous sections of the British media that he is angling for a move away from the Bridge. The 24-year-old, who arrived in west London 18 months ago from Bayer Leverkusen, has struggled for form this season, with Talksport claiming "he could be offloaded in January". But the German frontman countered the tittle-tattle by posting a photo on social networking site Instagram to prove his love of all things Blue. An accompanying message declared: "To the top:)) #behappy #blues."
Elsewhere and the Daily Star says that Manchester United have joined the race to sign France star Yohan Cabaye. The playmaker left Newcastle earlier this year to join Paris Saint-Germain but things haven't worked out well for him there and the Star says that once again he "is on the radar of Premier League giants Arsenal and Liverpool".
He has also caught the eye of the Red Devils' boss Louis van Gaal, and a January offer is a distinct possibility. Cabaye joined PSG for approximately £19m, and it's reported that the French champions are poised to "demand a similar fee" for Cabaye if a club comes calling in the New Year.
Meanwhile Caughtoffside reports that Nani has no plans to return to Old Trafford in the foreseeable future. Taking its cue from Portuguese rag Ojogo, the website says that the winger is enjoying his loan spell at Sporting Lisbon and is "not considering a return" to England. The 27-year-old has experienced a new lease of life since his loan move in the summer and it's increasingly likely that Sporting will take Nani on a full-time deal at the end of this season.
Finally, one of Europe's brightest young prospects has been making eyes at Liverpool, but is he just being a tease? Norwegian teen sensation Martin Odegaard – capped twice by his country despite being only 15 – has been linked with a host of the continent's top clubs in recent weeks, including Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund, but in an interview with German newspaper Sport Bild Odegaard said: "Liverpool have always been my dream club."
Asked if that meant the Reds were in pole position to sign him in January, the Stromsgodset midfielder replied: "I will not let this affect my decision when I choose a new club... it's all about finding the team that is best for me and for my development. That is not necessarily Liverpool."
Continue reading for free
We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.
Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.