Euro transfer news – Zenit snap up sought-after World Cup duo
Zenit St Petersburg have fired a warning shot to their rivals in Russia – and Europe beyond – with the signings of Aleksandar Lukovic and Bruno Alves.
Lukovic, who partnered Nemanja Vidic for Serbia at the World Cup, joins from Udinese, while Bruno Alves, a star performer for Portugal in South Africa, has been prized away from Porto.
Zenit are 80/1 to win the Champions League, and these two signings underline the ambition of the Russian Premier League side.
The 2008 UEFA Cup champions already boast a squad of considerable international quality, and the 27-year-old centre-back Lukovic is a welcome addition.
Alves, meanwhile, joins fellow Portuguese international Danny, who has scored 11 goals from midfield during his time in Russia.
In Italy, 66/1 Serie A title contenders Lazio are poised to sign Manchester City left-back Javier Garrido, having seen Serbian defender Aleksandar Kolarov move to Eastlands in the opposite direction.
But while Kolarov joined City for a whopping £19m, Garrido is expected to complete the reverse journey for a nominal fee, believed to be around £1m.
Garrido joined City in a £1.5m deal from Real Sociedad in 2007, but the Spaniard has struggled to secure first-team football at the City of Manchester Stadium.
Elsewhere in Europe, Real Madrid legend Raul has sealed his move to Schalke.
The Bundesliga side had long been the favourites to land the leading goalscorer in Champions League history, and they have confirmed that the 33-year-old has signed a two-year deal.
Zenit won the UEFA Cup in 2008, and now they have their eyes on the Champions League. Barcelona are the 3/1 favourites to win Europe’s premier competition. See the full UEFA Champions League Betting Odds market.