In case you were worried about Tim Cahill or Robbie Keane getting pulled into the QPR mire …

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Resurrection specialist Harry Redknapp, who still has his work cut out at relegation-threatened Queens Park Rangers despite this week’s encouraging result, has ruled out a chase for two prominent MLS men.

Loan rumors have been long and strong on LA Galaxy forward Robbie Keane and (to a slightly lesser extent) Red Bulls forward Tim Cahill. Both are former EPL men.

Either one could presumably assist the cause around Loftus Road, where QPR remains in last place, never mind having spent liberally in the summer transfer window, hoping to be a real player in the high-dollar EPL stakes. Instead, they are fighting to avoid a notorious drop.

(MORE: Center back Ryan Nelsen seems on the move out of Loftus Road)

This week’s shocking win at nearby Chelsea has provided fresh hope, and Redknapp will make his best effort to police up a couple of helpers from the transfer market.  But the Red Bulls striker and Galaxy striker won’t be in the manager’s plans. That’s what he told British press on Friday:

Of course, Redknapp is saying what all of us have said for weeks, that the MLS off-season is so short that these loan deals don’t seem to make much sense. And short of some temporary salary relief, the MLS clubs aren’t getting much out of these deals.

Still, it lands with greater impact when someone like Redknapp says … :

They are both top players but it will only be a short- term loan and that’s the problem. You take them for just six weeks but then you lose them at a time when you still have another 10-12 games to stay up. They’d improve any team but I’m not close to doing anything with them.”

Report: Newcastle activates $12m release clause of ex-Arsenal youth

Photo by Burak Kara/Getty Images
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Reports out of Turkey say Newcastle United have finally struck the transfer market for a new No. 10.

[ MORE: West Ham adds Diop ]

Aksam reports that Rafa Benitez got the Magpies hierarchy to activate a near $12 million release clause for Besiktas midfielder Oguzhan Ozyakup.

The 25-year-old was part of Arsenal’s youth set-up until 2012, making two League Cup appearances in 2011-12 before moving to Besiktas.

Dutch-born Ozyakup is 35-times capped with a goal for Turkey, twice captaining the Crescent-Stars.

Ozyakup lost playing time to Talisca this season, and registered just four assists in 24 appearances. In 219 appearances for Besiktas, he’s posted 27 goals with 50 assists.

Like the move for Newcastle?

Lukaku pens inspiring post on hard-scrabble upbringing

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Manchester United and Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku has an inspiring and emotional post in The Players’ Tribune which tugs at the heart strings and explains his competitive fire.

[ MORE: West Ham adds Diop ]

Lukaku talks about how his family’s poverty caused him to become a fierce competitor in the hopes of meeting his dreams head-on and providing for his family.

The Belgian, 25, scored twice in his side’s 3-0 World Cup-opening win over Panama earlier this week, and is now far removed from his youth, but he tells his story as if it lives fresh in his mind.

From The Players’ Tribune:

There were even times when my mum had to “borrow” bread from the bakery down the street. The bakers knew me and my little brother, so they’d let her take a loaf of bread on Monday and pay them back on Friday.

Lukaku also talks about racism in football, his debut for Anderlecht, and that aforementioned competitive drive. It’s 100 percent worth the read.

West Ham signs club record center back from Toulouse

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West Ham has reportedly set a club record with its latest signing under new manager Manuel Pellegrini.

Issa Diop is the player, the 21-year-old Toulouse captain and center back costing the Irons around $29 million.

[ MORE: Arsenal signs Leno ]

Diop scored three goals with an assist and eight yellow cards in 31 Ligue 1 matches this season, giving the young defender 95 apps, six goals, three assists, and 23 yellows since debuting with the senior team at 18.

Capped by France at every level below the senior team, Diop’s 2.2 interceptions per game ranked sixth in Ligue 1.

Toulose finished 18th in Ligue 1, but won its promotion/relegation playoff to stay in the French top flight.

From WHUFC.com:

“I am very happy to sign for such a historic, English club, and I hope to show my best here. I am a very ambitious player and West Ham is a very ambitious club, as we’ve seen with the appointment of the new coach. I hope to help the team win lots of games and make the fans happy.”

Layla’s Occasionally Unbiased Football Show: Episode 3

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In the third episode of Layla’s Occasionally Unbiased Football Show, England pulls out a massive win while VAR finds its way into the World Cup spotlight.

[ LIVE: World Cup scores ] 

There will be plenty more to come over the next few weeks, with the show coming via the Men In Blazers.

Click play on the video above to watch the first episode in full.