Morning Ticker: Chelsea eyes Robinho, Lampard in Italy and Lazio lands Zarate

Morning Ticker: Chelsea eyes Robinho, Lampard in Italy and Lazio lands Zarate

European Soccer

Morning Ticker: Chelsea eyes Robinho, Lampard in Italy and Lazio lands Zarate

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A day after signing Portuguese midfielder Deco, Chelsea’s Brazilian makeover continues with word that Robinho is next on Chelsea’s list of transfer targets.

The rumor is an interesting one considering all the talk about Robinho eventually being part of a Cristiano Ronaldo swap, but with the Ronaldo rumors cooling, Real Madrid might be making the next step in its own makeover.

According to reports, Robinho is upset about the Ronaldo swap rumors and is now ready to leave Madrid. With Chelsea the one team capable of affording him, it looks like he will be heading to London if he goes anywhere.

Mourinho says no Lampard to Inter..yet

Call Jose Mourinho the Phil Jackson of soccer. He plays more mindgames than Hannibal Lecter and is back to his masterful self with regards to the Frank Lampard to Inter rumors. Rather than just keep quiet, Mourinho publicly stated that he sees Lampard signing with Inter next summer, when his contract expires, but not this summer, because he doesn’t think Chelsea will sell him.

What’s the point? Mourinho is stirring the pot and putting pressure on Chelsea to sell or else risking losing Lampard for nothing in a year. With Deco’s arrival to an already loaded midfield, Lampard will have a tough fight for playing time and some reports suggest he might spend his last year at Chelsea wallowing on the bench. I don’t buy that one, but I also don’t see him sticking around Chelsea either.

And does anybody really buy Lampard’s "I’m just on vacation" talk? Right Lamps, you can go anywhere in the world for vacation and you just happen to be in Italy? Apparently Lampard and (big) Ronaldo went to the same school of excuse making.

Lazio close in on Zarate

Argentina Under-23 star Mauro Zarate is close to a deal with Roman club Lazio. The young striker spent half a season on loan with Birmingham, but will now join a Lazio strike force in dire need of some depth.

Now I’m not going to go as far as Lazio president Claudio Lotitto, who said Zarate will be better than Lionel Messi (crazy talk), but I do think Zarate could be one of the surprises of the Serie A season.

Share your thoughts on these stories, and any other stories from this morning or yesterday, in the comments section below.

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