Transfer news round-up: Arsenal preparing £35m Eliaquim Mangala offer; Manchester United set to fail in Paul Pogba return bid; Chelsea could lose Thibault Courtois and Ashley Cole; Ravel Morrison wanted by QPR
The latest rumours from around the web
Arsenal could look to strengthen their thin defence with a £35m bid for Porto defender Eliaquim Mangala in the summer, which could pave the way for club captain Thomas Vermaelen to leave the club. The French centre-back was linked with a move to Manchester City in January which failed to transpire, and the Metro is claiming that the powerful defender would prefer a move to north London rather than the Etihad, although interest remains from Monaco and PSG.
Meanwhile, reports claim that Manchester United’s attempts to bring former midfielder Paul Pogba back to Old Trafford will fall flat when the Frenchman signs a new contract to remain with Italian league champions Juventus. The 20-year-old has been hugely influential in helping the Bianconeri build a nine point lead at the top of the Italian league, and he looks set to be rewarded with a new contract worth three times as much as he currently earns. However, they could switch their attention to his midfield team-mate Arturo Vidal, who has attracted their interest in the past.
Chelsea could be raided by Real Madrid for goalkeeper Thibault Courtois, who is currently on loan with Atletico Madrid, after using a scout report compiled during Jose Mourinho’s time in charge in the Spanish capital to start their pursuit. The Belgian’s future is far from clear, given Petr Cech’s standing as Chelsea’s undisputed number one, while Courtois’s father has admitted his son will not play anywhere where he isn’t first choice.
They could also see Ashley Cole head to a Premier League rivals after he was linked with a move to Liverpool. The former Arsenal defender will see his contract expire in the summer and he’ll be free to negotiate a move of his desire, and with Liverpool only having Aly Cissokho on loan until the end of the season from Valencia, manager Brendan Rodgers could look to strengthen his defensive options with the experienced England left-back.
Ravel Morrison could go on loan to QPR Finally, West Ham midfielder Ravel Morrison could be shipped out on loan to Queens Park Rangers in an effort to rediscover his form that saw him stand out among the Hammers squad in the first half of the season. Manager Sam Allardyce has admitted his frustration that Morrison is not training when he possibly could, while Harry Redknapp has revealed he would love to take him on until the end of the season. A January bid from Fulham was turned down by the east London club, believed to be around £4m.
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