Man Utd in 'sensational move' for Van Persie... and Baines
Could Arsenal star be tempted? As Fergie targets £10m-rated Everton defender
THE WORD 'sensational', a bit like the garb of BGT stripper Beatrix Von Bourbon, is only used sparingly these days but it's how Talksport describes the news concerning Manchester United and Robin van Persie. They claim the Red Devils are "lining up a sensational move" for the Arsenal striker, confident that they'll lure the Dutchman from the Emirates in the summer season.
It was only yesterday that rumours emerged of Juventus's interest in van Persie but they appear to have as much credibility as an Argentine hockey player. Instead it appears United are the ones serious about the Arsenal captain, with Talksport reporting that they are ready to line van Persie's pockets, although whether they will match City's apparent offer of £250,000 a week remains to be seen. What's more, adds the broadcaster, United "have already sounded out" the Dutchman – scorer of 35 goals this season – and are quietly confident a deal will go through before the start of next season.
Staying at Old Trafford, Manchester United will step up their efforts to sign Everton's Leighton Baines with a £10million offer according to the Mirror. Baines is seen by Fergie as the perfect replacement for Patrice Evra, who turns 31 next Monday and has looked unconvincing this season. It is unlikely United will land Baines for the £6 they originally had ear-marked: with three more years to run on his contract and interest from other clubs his price is said to be rocketing.
Talksport report that Liverpool are lining up a summer move for Juventus outcast Milos Krasic. The Serbian winger has made just seven Serie A appearances this season after falling out of favour with manager Antonio Conte. A summer move looks almost inevitable and there is no shortage of clubs currently in the hunt for the 27-year-old, who joined Juve for around £13m in 2010. Italian TV station Mediaset has claimed that Liverpool are ready to offer Krasic a chance in the Premier League.
The Daily Mail says Liverpool are also hot favourites to land Rasmus Elm, the £7million-rated AZ Alkmaar midfielder. The Sweden international will be heading to the Euros later this summer where he will face England in Kiev on June 15. But the Merseysiders are hoping to have the deal for the 24-year-old wrapped up before the tournament kicks off in just four weeks' time.
According to The Express Yaya Toure has dropped a bombshell on Manchester City just days before the Premier League title decider. Toure admits that if former club Barcelona came calling he would have no hesitation in quitting City, despite having three years remaining on his £220,000-a-week contract at the Etihad Stadium. Toure, who joined City in a £24million move from Barca in 2010, told a Spanish radio station: "I said two years ago that I would return. It has been the most important team for me. And if they call, you don’t think twice. I love Barca".
Meanwhile Montpellier striker Olivier Giroud is making eyes at Bayern Munich, or at least that's what German rag Bild reports. The French frontman has scored 21 goals for the Mediterranean club this season, hoisting them to the top of the French first division, and as a result Giroud found himself linked to the Gunners. But, according to Bild, Giroud appears to regard Arsenal in the same light that Kim Jong-un regards theme parks. They quote the 25-year-old saying: "I personally had no direct talks with Bayern Munich, but my agent has."
He goes on to explain that those French players who have turned out for Bayern down the years (including Bixente Lizarazu, Franck Ribery and Willy Sagnol) "have always told how friendly they were received, how happy they were there and how well they were treated". Hmm, sounds like Samir Nasri and Sebastian Squillaci have been telling Giroud about life at the Emirates…
To other news, and Hamburg chairman Carl-Edgar Jarchow has done what the Queen failed to do in her speech to Parliament by saying something of interest. Asked by reporters if there was any substance to the stories linking Liverpool striker Dirk Kuyt to the club, Jarchow confirmed that there. He then said: "We have to sit down with the player and his agent to find a solution."
The 31-year-old Kuyt, who arrived at Anfield, is allegedly keen to leave the Reds in the summer and Jarchow said Hamburg are hopeful of reaching an agreement with the Premier League club: "The level of wages in the Premier League is very different to ours," he said. "Whether there is the possibility of a move remains to be seen."
Finally, the Daily Mirror says that Chelsea will "defy the wishes" of fans by ditching Didier Drogba at the end of the season. The Ivory Coast hitman, a fans' favourite since arriving at the Bridge in 2004, scored the winner in Saturday's FA Cup Final but apparently that won't save his Chelsea career. The Mirror reports that Chelsea will turn down Drogba's request for a new two-year deal as they look to construct a team for the future around Fernando Torres. That will leave the 34-year-old looking for an employer, though it's believed he could join former Chelsea teammate Nicolas Anelka at Shanghai Shenhua in the Chinese Super League.