Saturday's gossip column - transfers and rumours
Liverpool are ready to activate the £7m get-out clause in Demba Ba's contract to buy the Senegal striker from Newcastle in January. The Reds have made Ba their top target after being told South Korea frontman Son Heung-min is not for sale by Hamburg.
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, 45, has agreed to bid £46m for Atletico Madrid striker Falcao, 26, in January.
Liverpool are interested in buying a new striker in the new year, and may take advantage of the breakdown in contract talks between Gary Hooper, 24, and Celtic.
Bordeaux want to buy or loan back struggling striker Marouane Chamakh from Arsenal.
Crystal Palace manager Dougie Freedman, 38, has warned Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City that he values winger Wilfried Zaha, 19, at more than £11m.
Newcastle United managing director Derek Llambias has said the club does not regret not buying a centre-back during the summer.
Luis Suarez has hit back at a Fifa official who has accused the Uruguayan of "cheating" football by trying to con referees. Suarez said of Jim Boyce: "This guy I have no idea who he is. He certainly can't be well known and he wanted to get publicity."
Bolton have revived their interest in Mick McCarthy after seeing their chances of landing first-choice managerial candidate Ole Gunnar Solskjaer diminish.
Championship side Charlton Athletic want to make former defender Paul Elliott, 48, the first black chairman in English football.
Liverpool and Italy are set for a compensation battle over striker Fabio Borini, 21, after he fractured a bone in his right foot during a training session with his country's Under-21s on Thursday.
ENGLAND 5-0 SAN MARINO VERDICT
"In the end, it was every bit as easy as it sounds for England against the motley crew of accountants, students and olive oil salesmen who make up the worst team in world football."
"A victory by five goals against opponents who were more plankton than minnows was par but the more significant scoreline in England's group was elsewhere: Ukraine drew 0-0 in Moldova where England had scored five."
Little wonder, perhaps that Rooney, in his latest incarnation as international factotum-in-chief, found himself surrounded by at least four San Marino players pretty much every time he touched the ball at Wembley on a night of unrelenting and often monotonous attack versus defence.
After the sort of night that could kill international football stone dead, Roy Hodgson and his England players do not need to be told it was not even close to good enough.
Joint manager Mark Robson has said 26-year-old former Fulham striker Collins John - not 39-year-old player-manager Edgar Davids - could be Barnet's saviour. The club are yet to win a League Two game this season and have just three points from their opening 11 fixtures.
Liverpool-born Jamie Carragher, 34, had to be subtitled in television documentary Being: Liverpool, while his team-mates (and non-native speakers) Pepe Reina, 30, and Lucas Leiva, 24, did not need them.
Swindon manager Paolo di Canio, 44, says he wants to manage the England national team.