AEK give up on Argentinian forward Ponce
With less than a month to go until the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round, AEK Athens are fully engaged in pre-season preparations, but the Super League winners are struggling on the transfer front.
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Having lost key players such as Giannis Anestis, Ognjen Vranjes, Masoud Shojaei, Lazaros Christodoulopoulos and Sergio Araujo, the Kitrinomavri are in serious need of strengthening a heavily weakened squad, however they are not having much luck on the market. Yes, the club managed to keep Marko Livaja and penned contracts with Serafeim Giannikoglou, Marios Oikonomou and Christos Almpanis, but higher quality signings are required if AEK are to repeat last season’s success both domestically and in Europe.
AEK GIVE UP ON PONCE
Recently, it seemed certain that Ezequiel Ponce, a 21-year old Argentinian forward, was about to join AEK on a loan deal from Roma. However, despite the two clubs striking an agreement, the striker will not play for the Athenians.
Eager to receive better offers, Ponce refused to accept AEK’s proposal, opting to remain on the fence and weigh up his options. Finally, after around three weeks of waiting, AEK have given up on Ponce, especially taking into account the Argentine’s apparent lack of desire to represent the Enosis. It comes as a blow for newly appointed boss Marinos Ouzounidis, who now has very little time to somehow find an available, talented forward capable of replacing the departed Araujo.
INTEREST IN MALBASIC
According to various reports in the Spanish media, enquiries have been made to Tenerife concerning winger Filip Malbasic. In August 2017, Malbasic transferred to Segunda Division outfit Tenerife from Vojvodina, scoring nine goals in 37 league appearances. Nevertheless, due to the team’s financial issues, Tenerife are willing to sell the 25-year old.
AEK have engaged in negotiations with Tenerife in order to acquire Malbasic’s services, but the Enosis do have competition for the attacker, notably from two unspecified Serbian clubs. On Transfermarkt, his value is rated at 800,000 thousand euros.
KRKIC, RODWELL LINKED WITH AEK
Remember Bojan Krkic, the once highly rated Barcelona youngster? Nowadays, he’s on the books of relegated Stoke City in England, but the English press seem to think Krkic is on his way to AEK. Under contract at Stoke until 2020, Krkic has reportedly been offered to AEK as a loanee for the upcoming campaign, a transfer which would certainly be an impressive coup.
Alongside the Spanish forward, Jack Rodwell has seen his name linked with a move to the Greek champions. Just a few years ago, 27-year old Rodwell was a promising prospect in England, picked up by Manchester City in 2012 for 12 million. Since then, the midfielder has turned into a flop, now a free-agent after terminating his contract with lowly Sunderland.
In England, reports were released stating that Rodwell is edging closer to an AEK transfer and was also rumoured to be on Aris’ watch-list. Rodwell boasts three senior English national team caps to his name.
On Friday, a friendly match will take place against AEK Larnaca before the team return to the Greek capital from the first pre-season training camp in Poland. The maiden exhibition game ended in a 0:1 defeat to MKS Miedź Legnica.