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Transfer Deadline Day Rumors: Townsend to Man United, Kallstrom to Arsenal

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With just a few hours to go until the transfer deadline slams shut, there are plenty of rumors doing the rounds across the Premier League and Europe this morning.

Here’s a look at all the top gossip from across the tabloids, as the rumor mill spins into a frenzy.

LATEST: Follow all the deals on deadline day as they happen

Arsenal are set to make a shock move for Swedish midfielder Kim Kallstrom, as the Spartak Moscow midfielder could be the Gunners only buy on deadline day. Kallstrom, 31, is seen as an ideal short-term replacement as injuries to Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey are out injured with German star Julian Draxler not heading to the Emirates. The former Lyon midfielder will bring plenty of strength to the midfield and will bring something different to Arsenal. But is this a panic buy from Arsene Wenger?

Tottenham Hotspur winger Andros Townsend could be on his way to Old Trafford, with David Moyes a big admirer of the Spurs and England attacker. During his time in charge of Everton Moyes tried to get the 22-year-old winger on loan, and now he may flex his financial muscles to grab Townsend from Spurs. The speedy winger has been out injured for a long-time this season but should welcome a move to the Red Devils. This would be a great deal if United pull it off.

MORE: Thursday’s Transfer Rumor Roundup
MORE: Wednesday’s Transfer Rumor Roundup
MORE: Tuesday’s Transfer Rumor Roundup
MORE: Monday’s Transfer Rumor Roundup

Nani hopes to seal a move to Inter Milan or Tottenham, as the Portuguese winger wants regular minutes before the 2014 World Cup this summer. Nani, 28, has been largely on the peripheries for United this campaign and with the signing of Juan Mata and the likes of Adnan Januzaj and Antonio Valencia already ahead of him in the pecking order, it would seem as though Nani’s days at United are numbered.

Cardiff City are trying to sign Caligari defender Davide Astori. The Bluebirds have been desperately adding to their squad as Ole Gunnar Solksjaer wants to give his team the best chance possible of Premier League survival. Astori, 27, has been chased by Southampton and AC Milan for quite some time, but it seems as though Cardiff are willing to stump up the cash to buy the Italian international defender.

West Ham are looking to hijack Fulham’s bid for Greek striker Kostas Mitroglou. The Olympiacos man looked to be heading to Craven Cottage but the Hammers have jumped in following Fulham’s bid of $18 million being accepted. Mitroglou, 25, is a proven goal-scorer and both London rivals are set to battle it out until the deadline for his signature.

Another forward on the move in London could be Fulham striker Dimitar Berbatov, as the 33-year-old is set for a switch back to Tottenham Hotspur. The Bulgarian forward dazzled at Spurs when he first moved to England in 2006, before his big-money move to Manchester United. It’s thought that Berbatov would rather head back to Spurs than join AS Monaco in France.

Bayern’s Vidal says “ugly” Atletico not deserved UCL finalists

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 27: Juanfran of Atletico Madrid and Arturo Vidal of Bayern Munich argue during the UEFA Champions League semi final first leg match between Club Atletico de Madrid and FC Bayern Muenchen at Vincente Calderon on April 27, 2016 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
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Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal has declared “ugly” Atletico Madrid unworthy finalists in the UEFA Champions League.

Bayern was eliminated in the Champions League semifinal by Atleti on Tuesday, with Diego Simeone’s Spanish side advancing on away goals.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s UCL coverage ]

However, Vidal believed Bayern were the better team in the second leg, saying Atletico played “ugly football” to get through.

Today ugly football – Atletico – played against the best football in the world. The only time they saw the ball was for the goal.

They are going to be dreaming about us right up to the final. They did not have the ball, they took on the best team in the world, they took their chances and got to the final.

The best does not always win in football, like today. They are not deserved finalists.

Bayern Munich controlled more than 70-percent of possession and had 33 shots compared to Atletico’s nine, but those stats mean little as Antoine Griezmann’s away goal was enough to send Atleti to the final.

[ MORE: Former England striker Joe Cole headed to NASL’s Tampa Bay Rowdies ]

Atletico may not play the most attractive football, but after eliminating Barcelona and Bayern Munich in consecutive legs, it’s hard to argue anyone deserves this more than Simeone’s men.

Europa League preview: Liverpool, Shakhtar look to overcome Spanish foes

VILLARREAL, SPAIN - APRIL 28:  Cedric Bakambu of Villarreal is watched by the Liverpool defence during the UEFA Europa League semi final first leg match between Villarreal CF and Liverpool at Estadio El Madrigal on April 28, 2016 in Villarreal, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
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The second leg of the Europa League semifinals kick off tomorrow, with two La Liga sides looking to make it an all-Spanish final.

[ MORE: Premier League Playback ]

Villarreal holds a 1-0 lead over Liverpool, while Sevilla scored two away goals in their 2-2 draw at Shakhtar Donetsk.

Liverpool vs. Villarreal – 3:05 p.m. ET
Villarreal won first leg 1-0

Adrian Lopez’s late winner in the first leg has given Villarreal a slight lead, while the Spanish side did well not to concede an away goal. However, Liverpool have overcome deficits at Anfield before, including their memorable 4-3 victory over Borussia Dortmund in the quarterfinals. Emre Can is back fit for the Reds, as manager Jurgen Klopp will hope his fellow German can help the team to a cup final in his first year in charge.

[ RELATED: Liverpool preparing for another big Thursday night at Anfield ]

Sevilla vs. Shakhtar Donetsk – 3:05 p.m. ET
First leg ended 2-2 draw 

Sevilla are looking to become the first team to win three consecutive Europa League titles as the two-time defending champions face off against Shakhtar Donetsk. Sevilla are in the driver’s seat after scoring two away goals in Ukraine, and will feel confident of advancing to the final with a great home record at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium.

Men in Blazers podcast: Celebrating Leicester’s title with Arlo White

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In the latest Men in Blazers podcast, Rog and Davo celebrate Leicester City’s improbable Premier League title with Leicester’s own Arlo White.

All of the MiB content — pods, videos and stories can be seen here, but to really stay in touch, follow, subscribe, click here:

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European police say Russian mafia infiltrating soccer clubs

LISBON, PORTUGAL - NOVEMBER 04:  Sporting Lisbon fans celebrate after their team score a goal during the Portuguese Liga match between Sporting Lisbon and Uniao Leiria at the Alvalade XXI Stadium on November 4, 2005 in Lisbon, Portugal.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
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LISBON, Portugal (AP) Portuguese and European police say they have broken up a cell of an important Russian mafia group that allegedly laundered money through European football clubs.

Europol, the European Union’s law enforcement agency, said in a statement Wednesday the group identified EU football clubs in financial distress and infiltrated them with benefactors who brought much-needed cash.

[ MORE: Man City bounced from UCL ]

Once they were in control, the mobsters allegedly laundered millions of euros (dollars) through player transfers, TV rights deals and betting.

Portuguese and European police on Tuesday raided third-division Portuguese club Uniao de Leiria and arrested three key members of the Russian gang. Three other Portuguese clubs’ premises were searched.

Europol said the operation helped identify serious crimes in Austria, Germany, and the United Kingdom, though it gave no details.