Arsenal and Man Utd battle over Laporte, exit for Januzaj?
Young French centre-back has a £32m buyout clause but both sides want him as Ajax chase Januzaj
The latest youngster being linked to a move to the Premier League is Athletic Bilbao defender Aymeric Laporte. According to the Daily Express it is threadbare Arsenal who are leading the chase for the 20-year-old French centre-back with the paper saying their man in Spain has confirmed that the Gunners are prepared to meet Laporte's "astronomical £32m buyout clause".
Then again, so are Manchester United, which means it could come down to which of the two clubs is ready to go the extra mile in negotiating personal terms with Laporte. At the moment, claims the Express, there's little to choose between Arsenal and United in the race to sign the Frenchman. Arsene Wenger is a fan of the young defender and has been monitoring him for a while. The Gunners boss is also under huge pressure to bring in some defensive reinforcements, but Laporte is a former teammate of United's Ander Herrera and that could swing it the Red Devils' way.
To make matters worse for the misfiring Gunners, Talksport says that they could also lose out to Bayern Munich in their bid to sign Goncalo Guedes. It seems that the German giants have identified the 17-year-old flyer as the "long-term replacement” for ageing Franck Ribery. The 31-year-old Ribery is winding down his career, bedevilled this season by a knee injury, and according to German newspaper TZ Bayern have been busy scouring Europe for a playmaker capable of filling his boots.
The Portuguese winger has broken through into Benfica's first team this season – his form coming to the attention of Arsenal as well as Paris Saint-Germain, AC Milan and Borussia Dortmund. Talksport reports that Bayern might test the water in January with a bid but may have to cough up the £23.5m release clause that Benfica are demanding if they're serious about snapping up Guedes.
In other news, the Daily Star says that Ajax are eyeing up an 18-month loan deal for Manchester United winger Adnan Januzaj. The teenage Belgian, named on Tuesday as a contender for European football's Golden Boy award, has been on the Dutch club's radar for a while and the Star claims that they want to bring him to Holland in January until the end of the 2015-16 season.
United would apparently be willing to farm out Januzaj in the new year, but would want him safely back at Old Trafford in June. Ajax director and former United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar admitted to Dutch Football magazine recently that the Dutch outfit were keen on the 19-year-old but fear "we can't pay his salary."
Januzaj came to prominence last season under David Moyes but has so far failed to find much favour with new gaffer Louis van Gaal.
Finally, Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino has warned off any suitors for Harry Kane, reports the Daily Mail. The England Under-21 international has scored six goals this season for Tottenham – and Pochettino will be hoping he adds a couple more tonight when the Lilywhites take on Brighton in the fourth round of the League Cup.
But Kane's goals have come in the Europa League and League Cup and he has struggled for game time in the Premier League. That's led to rumours that Kane could be off at the end of the season. But Pochettino has this message for any rival club thinking of making a move next year. "Harry will be at Tottenham for a long time,” he said. "I am the head coach, I have to take decisions in the best interests of the team and Harry is an important player for us.'