Liverpool and Sunderland have agreed terms on a deal worth around £20million for midfielder Jordan Henderson and the move could be confirmed as early as today.
Liverpool’s offer, which is thought to include cash as well as French striker David Ngog as a makeweight, has been accepted and is now subject to medicals on both players.
The news comes after days of frenzied speculation, with the Reds seemingly determined to get their hands on Henderson before he heads off with the England Under-21s squad for the European Championships in Denmark.
Liverpool, who signed strikers Andy Carroll and Luis Suarez in a January spending spree fuelled by Fernando Torres’ departure, have wasted little time in adding to their squad again.
The Black Cats had repeatedly stated their highest-profile academy graduate was not for sale but Liverpool’s cash has persuaded them to part company with the 20-year-old.
As was the case when Aston Villa came calling in January with a deal potentially rising to £24million for Darren Bent, Sunderland were made an offer which represents an irresistible return on their investment.
n Martin Jol intends to quickly build a Fulham squad capable of sustaining a successful European and Barclays Premier League campaign.
The 55-year-old former Tottenham boss has agreed an initial two-year contract with the option of a further 12 months and replaces Mark Hughes, who resigned last Thursday after just one season at the helm.
Jol - whose hopes of taking charge of Fulham following Roy Hodgson’s departure a year ago were blocked by Ajax - will have little time to settle into life at Craven Cottage as the west London club face the first of as many as eight Europa League qualifiers on June 30, after being awarded a place via the UEFA Fair Play standings.
The Dutchman, though, is ready to meet the challenge head on.
He said: “It would be ridiculous to say that I am not happy with being in the Europa League.
“Let’s not forget, though, that can hinder you in the season, the last time Fulham were in the Europa League they were 12th in the table - but it is my hope that we can build a squad that is strong enough to compete in all of these competitions.”
n Swansea yesterday agreed to break their transfer record to seal the signing of striker Danny Graham from Watford.
The 25-year-old centre forward, who will sign a four-year deal upon passing a medical, set the Swans back £3.5million.
Graham was the top scorer in the npower Championship last season with 24 goals and was a reported target for a host of top-flight sides, including fellow top-flight newcomers QPR and Norwich.
The deal for Graham remains subject to a medical, which will be completed when the player returns from holiday.
n Giovanni Trapattoni challenged his Republic of Ireland players to take their impressive form into their remaining Euro 2012 qualifiers after seeing them claim a famous 2-0 friendly victory over Italy last night.
A 2-0 win over Trapattoni’s native country in Liege last night was the Republic’s fourth in a row following the Carling Nations Cup successes over Northern Ireland and Scotland and Saturday’s defeat of Macedonia in Skopje.