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17.05.2005 Sports News

Rating European soccer's top transfer targets

By FLORIDA TODAY

Fox Sports World Report soccer analyst Bobby McMahon lists for FLORIDA TODAY his top five European transfer targets.1. Michael Essien (Lyon, France). Essien, a 22-year-old Ghanaian international, has already been linked with a host of big European clubs but his French club Lyon, say he isn't for sale. A midfield dynamo he plays penalty box to penalty box and is just as liable to make a game saving tackle as he is to score a goal.2. Alberto Gilardino (Parma, Italy). Parma is presently under creditor protection and the completion of the Italian season will mean a mass clear out of talent. The young striker scored 23 Serie A goals in 2003/04 and his return of 22 goals so far this season has shown that he was no flash in pan.3. Sebastien Frey (Parma, Italy). Although he has just turned 25, Frey has been outstanding for Parma over the last four seasons. The French goalie looks certain to move on with Manchester United, Arsenal or a return to Inter Milan possible. Frey is only going to get better.4. Jesus Navas (Sevilla, Spain). I haven't seen too much of Navas, but based on reports he is going to be a magnificent player. Seville has just slapped an enormous price tag on him so it might be next summer before he moves.5. Manuel Fernandes (Benfica, Portugal). Fernandes can play as a holding midfielder or can get forward to support the attack. A tenacious tackler, the 19-year-old has a contract with Portuguese club until 2010.

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