Transfer Rumours January 10: Newcastle in pole position to sign French midfield star Sissoko

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NEWCASTLE United have edged ahead in the race to sign a French midfielder according to reports today, while James Tomkins has also been linked with the Magpies again.

The Times say that Newcastle are in pole position to sign France midfielder Moussa Sissoko, 23, on a pre-contract agreement in January with his deal at Toulouse expiring this summer.

Meanwhile, according to talkSPORT, West Ham are ready to move for Everton defender Sylvain Distin, 35, which could pave the way for 23-year-old centre-half James Tomkins to join Newcastle.

Other stories:

Manchester United are leading the chase for Crystal Palace’s England winger Wilfried Zaha, 20, and hope to tie up a £12m deal. Full story: the Times (subscription required)

Tottenham’s hopes of signing Brazilian forward Leandro Damiao, 23, have suffered a blow after his agent said he expected him to stay with Internacional. Full story: Daily Mail

QPR have made a £5m bid for West Brom’s 29-year-old Swedish defender Jonas Olsson. Full story: Daily Mirror

QPR boss Harry Redknapp also wants to sign Tottenham’s William Gallas, 35, to strengthen his struggling defence. Full story: Evening Standard

Manchester United are lining up a double bid for Chelsea stars Frank Lampard, 34, and Ashley Cole, 32, who are surplus to requirements at Stamford Bridge. Full story: Metro

But Juventus midfielder Andrea Pirlo, 33, wants Lampard to play alongside him in Italy. Full story: the Sun

England’s 19-year-old keeper Jack Butland, who is rated at £6m, says he will only leave Birmingham City for first-team football - not to be a reserve. Full story: Daily Mirror

Arsenal winger Theo Walcott, 23, has committed his future to the club after agreeing terms on a new four-and-a-half-year contract. Full story:

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers wants his scouts to make the most of the wealth of emerging talent on their own doorstep. Full story: Daily Mail

West Ham could be priced out of a move for Blackburn left-back Martin Olsson, 24, as Rovers want £7m for the Sweden international. Full story: the Sun

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson sent his brother Martin on a scouting mission to Spain to watch Rayo Vallecano striker Leo Baptistao, 20, who could be available for as little as £1.6m. Full story: talkSPORT

Everton are lining up Wigan’s James McCarthy, 22, as a replacement for Marouane Fellaini if the Belgian midfielder moves to Chelsea or Manchester United. Full story: Daily Star