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Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge is to join Premier League strugglers West Bromwich Albion on loan for the rest of the season, having turned down the chance to join Newcastle United.
Sturridge, 28, had seemed set to join the Magpies – and was set to have a medical there – until Baggies manager Alan Pardew intervened and convinced him to make the move to the Black Country instead.
Inter Milan had shown an interest in Sturridge but had made no concrete offer. The terms of West Brom’s deal to secure Sturridge haven’t been revealed.
The move should help to get Sturridge more first-team football. He has slipped down the pecking order at Liverpool this season and has only started 5 PL matches. With the World Cup in Russia on the horizon, Sturridge wants game time to try and force his way back into England manager Gareth Southgate’s plans.
Pardew has been trying to strengthen his squad all month, and a striker was a priority given the Baggies’ poor record in front of goal this season – just 19 goals in 24 matches.
Bringing in a striker has also been one of Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez’s top priorities and had been chasing Sturridge all month. While the club had initially been put off by his wages – said to be about £150,000 per week – that stumbling block appeared to have been overcome.
Newcastle have also been chasing Feyenood striker Nikolai Jorgenson, but have had two offers rebuffed so far. However, Benitez is still chasing his man and preparing a third bid.
The deal for Sturridge may also have added satisfaction for Pardew as he gets one over on his old employers. Pardew was Newcastle manager from 2010 to 2014, but was never popular among fans.
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Arsenal and Manchester City are said to be both preparing to bid for West Bromwich Albion defender Jonny Evans when the transfer window reopens in January.
Both sides tried to sign Northern Ireland international Evans, 29, in August – including a £25 million deadline day bid by Arsenal – but were rebuffed.
However, West Brom could be open to bids for their star defender in January. The Baggies’ Chinese owner Guochuan Lai wants to run the club on a profitable, sustainable basis so new boss Alan Pardew may have to sell before he can buy. It is also thought that Evans may be open to a move to a club playing in Europe, although Pardew has said that he would like to keep the player at the Hawthorns if possible.
“I think the assurance I need is probably from Jonny more than anybody, and I haven’t met him yet,” said Pardew. “I think he’s a fabulous player and very important for the club.”
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is known to be looking for another centre-half to bolster his squad – especially as Per Mertesaker is retiring in the summer – and retains an interest in Evans.
Likewise, City manager Pep Guardiola is also in the market for a centre-half, following the recent injury to John Stones, and Vincent Kompany’s recent injury record – although the Belgian is currently fit and playing.
It is thought that a bid of £30 million would be enough for West Brom to part with the defender.
Crystal Palace have appointed Newcastle boss Alan Pardew as their new manager.
Pardew was given permission by the Magpies to speak with the London side after the two clubs agreed compensation on Monday.
The 53-year-old replaces Neil Warnock, who was sacked on Saturday four months into his second spell in charge.
Palace have yet to officially confirm the deal but BBC Sport understands Pardew signed his contract with the Eagles on Friday evening.
Manchester City have made enquiries about signing striker Wilfried Bony, 26, from Swansea in January for £30m. (Telegraph)
Alan Pardew is believed to be keen on making a shock move to Crystal Palace.