Man United are ready to step up their interest in a new centre-back while Chelsea have made plans to fend off interest from Barcelona.
MOSES IS CHELSEA’S SAVIOUR
Chelsea are ready to tie down a rejuvenated Victor Moses to a new contract in order to fend off interest in Barcelona, according to various reports.
The Nigerian has been given a new lease of life in his wing-back role given to him by manager Antonio Conte and played an instrumental role in Chelsea’s 2-1 comeback victory against Tottenham which put them back at the top of the Premier League table.
Moses’ impressive performances have reportedly caught the eye of Catalan giants Barcelona who have been linked with a variety of right-backs ahead of the January transfer window.
Moses still has over three years left on his current Chelsea deal, but technical director and fellow Nigerian Michael Emenalo is ready to reward him with a bumper pay rise after becoming an unlikely star in Conte’s 3-4-3 system.
When asked about the Barcelona rumours, Conte simply said: “About Victor, I repeat, it’s more important to be focused on the present. It’s important to be focused game by game.”
RED DEVILS CHASE HOTS UP
Manchester United have reportedly ‘entered negotiations’ to sign Benfica centre-back Victor Lindelof, according to Portuguese publication O Jogo.
The 22-year-old has been strongly linked with a move to Old Trafford and he is now considered to be Jose Mourinho’s main transfer priority when the window opens again in January.
It is believed he would cost a minimum of £25million, but Benfica are apparently not willing to sell if they manage to seal their place in the knockout stages of the Champions League in their final group game against Napoli.
Manchester United scouts have kept a firm eye on the Swedish international since the start of the season and has recently received the royal seal of approval from his fellow compatriot Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
“I think Victor is doing great things, he is playing good for Benfica, he gets a lot of responsibility for the national team now,” Ibrahimovic said. ‘He is growing.
“Is he good enough for United? I think he’s good enough for the big clubs out there. It’s up to him what he wants and what the situation says.
“Whatever he chooses will be good for him. I know he is hot on the market so let him make the right choice, what fits him good.”
The report also mentions that Mourinho would have tried to sign Lindelof in the summer had he not been able to land Eric Bailly from Villarreal.
AND THE REST
Arsenal are aiming to send striker Chuba Akpom out on loan in January – with Cardiff, Brentford and Fulham all keen – as the 21-year-old recovers from a back injury (Daily Mirror)
Leicester City defender Danny Simpson, 29, says the club’s Christmas party could be cancelled after their poor start to the Premier League season (Daily Mirror)
Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew is facing crisis talks over the next 48 hours as he bids to hold onto his job (Daily Express)
Midfielder Eden Hazard, 25, believes Chelsea are in a three-way fight for the Premier League title with Manchester City and Liverpool (Daily Telegraph)
Dutch striker Dirk Kuyt believes his former Liverpool team-mate Steven Gerrard will reject the easy option of a lucrative career in television punditry and focus, instead, on following his ambition of one day becoming manager at Anfield (Independent)