Transfer news: Shinji Kagawa set for Manchester United exit in a swap deal for Borussia Dortmund defender Neven Subotic - reports
Kagawa has fallen down the pecking order under David Moyes and reports in Portugal suggest United are keen on the Serbian defender Subotic, which could pave the way for Kagawa's return
Shinji Kagawa could be set for a January exit from Manchester United having fallen out of favour under new manager David Moyes, with Borussia Dortmund emerging as the frontrunners in an attempt to bring the Japanese playmaker back to the Westfalenstadion.
Reports emerged in Portuguese newspaper A Bola that Kagawa could return as early as January, with Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp having already admitted his desire to bring the 24-year-old back to Germany.
However, the newspaper claims that the move would hinge on Serbian defender Neven Subotic moving in the opposite direction, with Moyes keen to bolster his defensive options in the wake of United’s worst start to the Premier League in 24 years.
Klopp has been outspoken in his criticism of the treatment of Kagawa since his £17m move in 2012, although the midfielder suffered an injury-hit first year at Old Trafford under Sir Alex Ferguson.
In an interview with Japanese television earlier this year, Kagawa admitted that he hopes his time with Dortmund is not over, and that he would be willing to return to the club should they ever want him.
Moyes has been reluctant to select Kagawa since he took over in the summer, leading to serious questions as to whether his future lies with the Premier League champions or elsewhere. The Japan international spent two seasons with Dortmund, becoming a key figure in the side that won back-to-back Bundesliga titles, before moving to England to link up with the Red Devils.
Subotic meanwhile has become a prominent figure in the Dortmund defence since joining the club in 2008 after moving to Germany from his adopted home of the United States of America. He has been influential in Dortmund’s rise in European football, culminating in their Champions League final appearance last season where the narrowly lost out to rivals Bayern Munich.
Having elected to play for his country of birth, Subotic has made 36 appearances for Serbia, giving him considerable experience at the tender age of 24, and he has earned recognition at club level for his consistent partnership with young German centre-back Mats Hummels.
It is said that with Rio Ferdinand approaching the latter stages of his career, Moyes wants to bring in Subotic to compete with another Serbian in Nemanja Vidic, and Northern Irishman Jonny Evans for a starting berth.
Latest in Sport
England vs New Zealand second Test match report: England’s bold boast turns into hot air and humiliation
Fifa corruption: Sepp Blatter's right-hand man Jerome Valcke 'sent' $10m payment to Jack Warner in letter from the South African FA
England 'favourites' to host 2018 World Cup after Sepp Blatter resignation - Qatar and Russia under pressure
Michael Schumacher: Bernie Ecclestone reveals why he can't visit former F1 champion because he 'doesn't want to see him like that'
Brendan Rodgers' job safe for now but Liverpool owners plan for improvement
- 1 California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
- 3 Charles Kennedy 'had better judgement drunk than many sober politicians' says Ian Hislop
- 5 We have six months to save the world, says leading economist
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Church of England 'one generation away from extinction' after dramatic loss of followers