Summer move to England on cards for Deschamps

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The Independent Football

The manager of Marseilles, Didier Deschamps, has decided he will finally make his move to the Premier League, at the end of this season.

The Independent understands that Deschamps, who is represented by Zinedine Zidane's agent Alain Migliaccio in France, has had talks with at least one high-profile agent working in England and instructed them to get him a move in the summer.

The news will alert various Premier League clubs but a move must happen before 15 June to limit compensation to the Ligue 1 side.

Deschamps has a clause in his contract meaning he can move for just ¤3m (£2.64m) if he goes before that date. Last season Liverpool tried to make the former World Cup winner their replacement for Rafael Benitez but their move came on the eve of Marseilles' pre-season kick-off.

"I was very proud that a club like Liverpool were interested in me. But the timing was not good. I could not leave Marseilles two days before the restart," Deschamps said of the situation last September.

Chelsea and Juventus have also been linked in the past with a coach who could interest Aston Villa this summer. Marseilles trail Lille by four points and play Toulouse tomorrow with the leaders visiting Monaco tonight.

In Spain, Real Madrid's coach Jose Mourinho has left Karim Benzema out of tonight's match against Athletic Bilbao as he heads into a four-week period that will see him face Pep Guardiola's Barcelona at least twice and more probably four times.

Benzema is still recovering from a thigh strain and may also sit out the second leg of the Champions League quarter-final against Tottenham. Barcelona play Almeria this evening and are still without central defender Carles Puyol who is still not fit.

Guardiola said last night: "He has this problem [tendinitis in his left knee] and until it goes then he cannot play. We cannot put a date on his return."

In Italy, Milan have Zlatan Ibrahimovic back from suspension as they face Fiorentina away. The Swede has scored five goals in his last six games against tomorrow's opponents who are on a run of six games unbeaten. Second-placed Napoli visit Bologna and third-placed Inter play Chievo tonight.