LONDON - Roundup of news before Friday's Premier League games: Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson said he was not planning to make any signings in next month's transfer window. "I do not think there will be any January transfers," local media quoted Ferguson as saying ahead of Friday's visit to Stoke City. "I am happy with what I have got." Fernando Torres is close to returning from a hamstring injury for Liverpool, the league leaders said. The striker has missed the last five games and it was not clear whether he would be available for Friday's match at home to Bolton Wanderers. "Torres is improving. As regards the Christmas period, I will say his rehab is coming on well," assistant manager Sammy Lee told the club's website. "The class of Torres would obviously be missed by any team, and when he's available for us he'll be a massive addition." Second-placed Chelsea will be without captain John Terry for their game at home to West Bromwich Albion as the defender starts a three-match ban after his sending off at Everton. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has yet to decide who will take over the captain's armband in the absence of midfielder Cesc Fabregas, who has been sidelined for up to four months after damaging knee ligaments. Goalkeeper Manuel Almunia stood in as skipper when Fabregas went off during Sunday's 1-1 draw with Liverpool but Wenger hinted he was not the automatic choice. "I don't know yet," he told arsenal.com before their trip to third-placed Aston Villa. "That can move a little bit. But that is not the most important thing. For me Fabregas remains the captain of the team even when he is not playing." Villa manager Martin O'Neill thinks Arsenal will be out for revenge after his side took all three points at the Emirates Stadium last month. "They will be coming with revenge in mind and a chance to get themselves back into the Premier League race. It's a big game for us -- a massive test -- and I hope we are up for it," he told the club's website.
24 December 2008
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