The Sunderland manager, Peter Reid, is set to sign the Dutch Under-21 winger Andy van der Meyde from Ajax in a £3m deal.
Reid is in negotiations with the Amsterdam club for the 22-year-old, who played against England in the European Championships play-offs recently. Van der Meyde is available at the right price as Ajax cannot persuade him to sign a new contract. His old one expires in 18 months.
The talented Ajax product would add some class to the Sunderland midfield – despite Reid's recent captures of Jason McAteer and Claudio Reyna. Van der Meyde is two-footed and can give genuine width to the side that has been lacking since Nicky Summerbee left after a feud with Reid a couple of years ago.
Ajax officials are haggling over the fee, but Sunderland are expected to agree a deal in the next 24 hours and fly in Van der Meyde for a medical.
Reid has also made an inquiry about the prolific Brighton striker Bobby Zamora – but is reluctant to pay the £4m asking price. Reid is looking to add a new striker to his squad, but was shocked to discover the Second Division side's valuation for the striker.
Zamora has already attracted interest from Everton and Tottenham, and the Seagulls are determined to get a good price for him. Reid is under pressure to buy but will not spend above the level he rates Zamora at – which is closer to £2.5m.
The Blackburn manager, Graeme Souness, has cooled his interest in the Celta Vigo striker Catanha after the Spanish side demanded a £10m transfer fee.
West Ham dramatically scuppered Fabrice Fernandes's move to Southampton last night, with a £1.8m swoop for the Frenchman. The talented midfielder flew in from Rennes for signing talks with Saints, only to discover West Ham had moved in for him ahead of them.
Fernandes, who made his name on loan at Fulham last season, had spoken to the Southampton manager, Gordon Strachan, and was happy to move to St Mary's. But Saints decided to try for him on loan instead, an option Fernandes's advisers did not want, while West Ham agreed to pay the asking price for him.
So Fernandes headed for Upton Park to finalise personal terms last night after Southampton had made all the running in the deal.
The Crystal Palace manager, Trevor Francis, has made a £2m move to sign the Wales international midfielder Jason Koumas from Tranmere Rovers.
West Brom are also in the race to sign Koumas, who will be allowed to leave the Merseyside club for the right price. Albion have been haggling over the fee all season and thought they were close to agreement, but Palace have now matched them in the hunt.
Dover have confirmed the former Everton and Wales goalkeeper Neville Southall as their new manager. His first game in charge will be against Margate on Boxing Day. Clive Walker will be his assistant.
Wolves are to have talks with the Leicester striker Dean Sturridge to discuss turning his loan move into a permanent deal for £350,000. Sturridge, 28, who scored four goals in his first two appearances for Wolves, is in the final week of a month's loan at Molineux.
The Italian club Parma have sacked their coach, Daniel Passarella, after only five Serie A games in charge, all of which they lost. Parma appointed Passarella, the captain of Argentina's 1978 World Cup-winning team, on 6 November following the dismissal of the previous coach Renzo Ulivieri.
The Wigan manager, Paul Jewell, has made a £300,000 offer for Mansfield's prolific striker Chris Greenacre, who is also wanted by Millwall and Stockport.Reuse content