Paper Talk: West Ham to pip Liverpool for Barca ace

Date published: Thursday 9th June 2016 7:50

Thomas Vermaelen (r): Wanted at Liverpool

Thomas Vermaelen (r): Wanted at Liverpool

West Ham are in pole position, ahead of Liverpool, to sign Barcelona defender Thomas Vermaelen, while Paul Pogba will cost Man Utd £78million.


It’s hardly ground-breaking stuff from the Mirror this morning, whose back-page splash revolves around Paul Pogba.

“£78m Pogback”, reads their headline with the ‘news’ that Manchester United “may have to pay a British record £78million for Paul Pogba”.

So United will have to top the £59.6million they paid Real Madrid in the summer of 2014 for Angel Di Maria if they want to re-sign Pogba, who left for Juventus four years ago.

Shock, horror, well not really. Essentially United will have to pay top dollar for a player who is most probably the best midfielder on the planet.

The reports goes on to say that Jose Mourinho is prepared to sanction a deal for the France star, who left on a Bosman under Sir Alex Ferguson with United receiving just £800,000 in compensation. But such is Mourinho’s desire to “rebuild United’s midfield around him” that he will offer the 100m euros that Juventus are wanting.

The Guardian have claimed that United are free to move for the 23-year-old after Man City pulled out of the running for the player, who is the favourite to become the player of the tournament at Euro 2016

The Mirror maintains that “Mourinho is a big admirer of Pogba and tried to sign him last summer for Chelsea”, but the player is believed to prefer a move to La Liga and is hoping either Barcelona or Real Madrid make a move for him so he can experience a different culture.


West Ham and Liverpool are poised to make a move for Barcelona defender Thomas Vermaelen after reports in Spain claimed the centre-back is looking for a return to the Premier League.

The Belgium international joined Barca from Arsenal two summers ago but he has been plagued by injuries and has been unable to force his way past Javier Mascherano and Gerard Pique at the heart of the Barca backline.

And now, according to Sport, Vermaelen – whose wife is English – is considering his future in Spain after making just 11 La Liga starts for the Catalan club.

The Spanish daily report that Liverpool and West Ham are interested in the Vermaelen but neither club have yet to contact Barca about his availability.

While West Ham, are believed to be favourites to sign the player, who would favour a move back to London.



Arsenal forward Theo Walcott, 27, has no intention of leaving despite the Gunners bidding for Leicester’s 29-year-old striker Jamie Vardy. (ESPN)

Feyenoord starlet Tahith Chong claims he will become Jose Mourinho’s second signing since taking over as Manchester United manager. (Sun)

Chelsea forward Diego Costa, 27, wants to return to Atletico Madrid this summer, according to the Spanish club’s president. (Antena 3 Sports)

Antonio Conte wants to make Juventus right-back Stephan Lichtsteiner, 32, his first signing as Chelsea manager. (Sun)

Roma midfielder Radja Nainggolan, 28, has spoken to Conte about moving to Chelsea and says his Belgium team-mates Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois have urged him to move to Stamford Bridge. (Daily Telegraph)

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is not allowed to sign any players from Bayern Munich, according to the German champions’ midfielder Douglas Costa, 25. (Globo Esporte)

After signing 22-year-old Eric Bailly from Villarreal, Manchester United want to recruit another defender. (Manchester Evening News)

The Red Devils also want Juventus striker Alvaro Morata, 23, and are willing to pay £47m. (Marca)

Man Utd are willing to let Matteo Darmian leave, with Juventus favourites to sign the 26-year-old full-back. (Tuttosport)

Leicester City are plotting a £15m move for Watford striker Troy Deeney. (Telegraph)

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez has made signing a striker his priority, but wants a proven goalscorer rather than a youngster with potential. (Newcastle Chronicle)

Championship side Wolves want to sign 20-year-old Manchester United forward James Wilson on loan for next season. (Express and Star)

Celtic plan to release Republic of Ireland striker Anthony Stokes on a free transfer, and the 27-year-old could join Rotherham. (Daily Mail)

Southampton are planning to offer new deals to Sadio Mane and Shane Long, but are doubtful whether Graziano Pelle and Victor Wanyama will stay beyond this summer. (Mirror)

Chelsea are pondering a £31m offer for Marseille striker Michy Batshuayi after he turned down the chance to join West Ham. (Mirror)

Tottenham are leading the race to sign Victor Wanyama as they look to bolster their midfield options. (Star)

Manchester City will triple Aymeric Laporte’s wages to bring him to the Etihad Stadium from Athletic Bilbao. (Star)

Liverpool winger Lazar Markovic has been offered to Galatasaray after a successful loan spell in Turkey with rivals Fenerbahce. (Express)

Sweden coach Erik Hamren has told Zlatan Ibrahimovic he will not be allowed to leave their Euro 2016 camp to complete a move to Manchester United. (Express)

Liverpool striker Samed Yesil has held talks with Trabzonspor’s president Muharrem Usta about a move to Turkey. Yesil has been told he can leave Liverpool. (Express)

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