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Milan confirms talks with Sevilla striker Fabiano

SEVILLA'S Brazilian striker Luis Fabiano is AC Milan's only remaining transfer target but the clubs are some way apart on valuation, the Italian team's chief executive Adriano Galliani said yesterday.

A move for Porto fullback Aly Cissokho collapsed after he failed a medical while VfL Wolfsburg refused to sell striker Edin Dzeko and interest in Real Madrid forward Klaas Jan Huntelaar has cooled.

"The only talks that are continuing are for Luis Fabiano, a player our coach Leonardo prefers to Huntelaar," Galliani told reporters. "We are a few millions apart."

Milan, which has faced fan protests after selling Kaka to Real Madrid, signed US centre back Oguchi Onyewu on Tuesday.

In London, Yuri Zhirkov has completed his move to Chelsea from CSKA Moscow on a three-year deal. The 25-year-old Russia midfielder signed the contract on Tuesday. New coach Carlo Ancelotti announced the transfer on Monday.

As well as adapting to the Premier League, Zhirkov knows he must learn English.

He said: "It is good when some of the players speak Russian, even today (Czech Republic goalkeeper) Petr Cech translated some bits and pieces, and I understand some words in English. Now I hope to learn English too."

Also, former England international Lee Bowyer signed a two-year contract with Birmingham City yesterday, making permanent his move to the club following a successful loan spell there last season.

The 32-year-old Bowyer made 17 appearances and helped Birmingham win promotion from the Championship (second division) last season and has rejoined the club after being released by West Ham.

Arsenal meanwhile has ended the uncertainty over Robin van Persie after he agreed to a new long-term contract with the Premier League club.

The Netherlands striker joined the Gunners in 2004 from his hometown club Feyenoord. The 25-year-old Van Persie was Arsenal's leading scorer last season with 20 goals from 44 appearances, but had been linked with a move to another club after a fourth trophyless campaign.

Manchester United lapped up winger Gabriel Obertan on a four-year contract from French champion Bordeaux.

Also, Sevilla has signed Didier Zokora from Tottenham. The 28-year-old Ivory Coast midfielder agreed to a four-year contract with the Spanish league club, which did not disclose the cost of his transfer.


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