Gossip: Three more for Man Utd; new option for Liverpool target

Ian Watson

Man Utd seem closest to strengthening an area they don’t deem a priority, while Villa want permanent deals with Liverpool and Arsenal…


Manchester United’s pursuit of Jadon Sancho is moving slower than erosion but reports this morning suggest Ed Woodward has other irons in the fire too. And as last summer demonstrated, the vice chairman isn’t keen on multi-tasking.

The Manchester Evening News says United are looking to sign three more players this summer in addition to Donny van de Beek. The story identifies Sancho as the primary target and then goes on to name three other positions in which they wish to strengthen: left-back, centre-back and centre-forward.

There seems to be most noise around the left-back area, which is ‘not believed to be a priority’. United are said to be considering their options over Real Madrid cast-off Sergio Reguilon while Dynamo Kiev defender Vitaly Mykolenko is also said to be a target. Alex Telles continues to be linked with United too, with his people understood to be in England to discuss a move to the Premier League, though Wolves are also hot on the Porto star.

United appear to be making no progress whatsoever with their pursuit of a back-up centre-forward, while the MEN says the Red Devils have to shed their defensive deadwood before making a move for a centre-back – Dayot Upamecano’s name is again mentioned – which is proving easier said than done. ESPN has reported on Woodward’s struggles to shift the likes of Chris Smalling, Marcos Rojo and Phil Jones because of their huge wages. Who could possibly have seen that coming?

The tables are turned somewhat in the case of Gareth Bale. Marca reckons Real Madrid are desperate for United to act on their seemingly casual interest in the Wales winger so they can shift his massive salary off their books and reinvest the money in players who like playing football.


Thiago Alcantara has also been linked with United in recent weeks while his expected move to Liverpool has seemingly stalled. But the Bayern Munich star could have the option to return to Barcelona, if reports are to be believed.

Bild reckons Barca are sniffing around the midfielder, who left the Nou Camp to join Bayern in 2013. But it seems Ronald Koeman is more focused on bringing Georginio Wijnaldum to the club instead.

Barca are also said to be stepping up their interest in Memphis Depay. RMC reports that talks between the Catalan side and Lyon are already underway and L’Equipe reckons the French club are looking for £27million for a player they could lose for nothing next year.


Rhian Brewster could be following Wijnaldum through the Anfield exit door in the coming weeks, though it is hard to believe that Aston Villa might get their way over the Liverpool youngster.

The Sun says Villa want to sign Brewster permanently for £20million, which appears unlikely given how highly the striker is rated at Anfield. A loan deal, though, is a different story and The Telegraph says that is an option Sheffield United and Crystal Palace are also pursuing.


Villa also feature prominently in reports around Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez. The Athletic says the Villans have lodged a second bid worth around £20million for the Argentinian stopper, who looks set to return to the Gunners bench with Bernd Leno fit again.

While Arsenal have an abundance of capable keepers, Chelsea have not one fit for purpose. Kepa’s presence complicates their search for a stopper, but that isn’t stopping the Blues from pursuing Edouard Mendy. The Daily Mail says an offer of £20million plus add-ons has been submitted to Rennes for the 28-year-old, while Le10Sport says PSG stand-in Alphonse Areola is a possible back-up option, which may come as a blow to Fulham who are hoping to sign the France international to stand in their goal.