Italian invasion continues at Hornettos
Welcome to The Trawler, your weekly submersion through the teeming waters of life in the Championship, League One and League Two. You might be surprised what you find down there.
Zola set for Watford?
As reported in the Trawler week the Pozzo family, who already own Italian side Udinese and Granada in Spain, have completed a deal to buy Championship club Watford. The terms remain subject to Football League approval, but rumours are circulating that the Italians are considering countryman Gianfranco Zola as a possible successor to current manager Sean Dyche.
Some sources claim a deal for Zola is as good as done, but neither parties have commented so far. Read a statement at Watford's website: "The club would like to thank everyone for their patience and understanding during recent times and look forward to releasing further details in due course."
Deegan suspended after Tweet row
Coventry City midfielder Gary Deegan has been suspended from training for two weeks, after allegedly posting an offensive message on Twitter. According to a Daily Mail report, Deegan posted a pro-IRA message on the social networking site in response to the news his team-mate James McPake had been selected by Northern Ireland. He acted quickly to apologise, but City are taking the matter seriously and performing their own investigation.
Forest takeover close
Nottingham Forest have entered an "exclusive period of negotiation" with the Al-Hasawi family, as the Kuwaiti investors move closer to a takeover of the Championship club.
"Advisors on behalf of the Al-Hasawi family are conducting the usual buyer's due diligence, assisted by the estate and senior management at the football club," read an official statement from Forest. "At this time we ask fans to ignore all media speculation and we will update supporters as soon as there is anything material to report."
With that in mind, you should therefore ignore speculation that Forest have approached Peterborough boss Darren Ferguson to be their new manager. Some sources claim Forest boss Steve Cotterill is furious about the situation, and may present his grievances to the Football League Managers' Association. But you didn't read that here.
Kilbane joins pre-season training
Staying with Coventry, the Sky Blues have been joined in their pre-season training by veteran Republic of Ireland international Kevin Kilbane. The 35-year-old is a free agent after completing his deal at Hull, and - fitness levels permitting - is being considered as a possible addition to Coventry's squad for the new season in League One.
Bolton sign Andrews
Kilbane's fellow Ireland international Keith Andrews has joined Bolton on a free transfer, after being released by Premier League side West Brom at the end of the season. The 31-year-old is Owen Coyle's first signing for Wanderers since they dropped down to the Championship, and Bolton's manager is confident he's mined a potential diamond.
"He is highly experienced, both in domestic and international football," Coyle said of Andrews. "He will bring strength, competition and a goalscoring threat to our midfield."
Man United midfielder goes to Huddersfield
Huddersfield Town have beaten the competition to sign 21-year-old Manchester United midfielder Oliver Norwood.
The Northern Ireland international was reportedly offered a new deal at Old Trafford, and also wanted by a number of other clubs, but eventually decided to join Simon Grayson's newly-promoted Championship outfit on a three-year deal.
"He is an excellent passer of the ball from the centre of the park and shows good composure," Grayson said. "He will add a different dimension to our midfield. He is a young, full international who is full of desire and has excellent potential."
Yak to graze in China
Yakuba has left relegated Blackburn for Chinese club Guangzhou. The Nigerian international was named Rovers' player of the season after scoring 18 goals in their ill-fated 2011-12 campaign, and will be sorely missed at Ewood Park after his ten-month spell there.
The 29-year-old Yakubu said the deal had nothing whatsoever to do with (what will surely amount to an obscene amount of) cash. "Money cannot buy you happiness and what I have found from the people in China is love, happiness, sincerity and warmth," Yakubu told the BBC. "I can't wait to get started here."
Brentford prepare for new stadium
League One Brentford have purchased land they plan to build a new 15,000-seater stadium on. The Lionel Road site has been a long-term vision for the London club and they hope to have a new facility up and running in time for the 2016-17 season.
"This is brilliant news for the club and it's now full steam ahead for a new stadium," said Bees' chairman Greg Dyke. "... Hopefully by the time we move into the new ground we will already be a Championship club."
Di Canio corner
Paolo Di Canio will come up against an old friend this week, when his Swindon team take on a select XI of Italian lower league players managed by Damiano Tinelli.
Tinelli, who according to the Swindon Advertiser goes by the name "Bomba" on account of his "flare-making expertise", has become close to Di Canio over the last few years and come to admire his honesty.
"He is a friend of my family and I am a friend of his family and Paolo, for me and I think for many people, is a man and this is important," Bomba said. "He tells every time the truth. When he thinks something he says it. He is sensitive but he is a good man. When he tells you something he's serious."