Transfer Gossip: Ten Hag ready to snap up free-agent Colombian star to fix big Man Utd worry; Newcastle plot exciting double January deal

Santiago Arias, Colombia, during International friendly match between France 2-3 Colombia at Stade de France in Saint-Denis, France

Manchester United are ready to snap up Santiago Arias following his release by Atletico Madrid, Newcastle are putting wheels in motion for two January signings, while Saturday’s Transfer Gossip says a former Celtic midfielder is set to sign for West Brom.

SANTIAGO ARIAS SET TO SIGN FOR MAN UTD

Erik ten Hag is reportedly set to sign Santiago Arias in a matter of days as he looks to find a remedy for a problem position in his Manchester United side.

The window may have shut by clubs are still able to conduct business by snapping up free agents. Indeed, the likes of Lorius Karius and Diego Costa have both sealed moves in recent days.

Now it’s the turn of United, with Ten Hag moving to sign free-agent right-back Arias.

United boss Ten Hag has already invested heavily this summer signing the likes of Antony, Casemiro and Lisandro Martinez. Indeed, they have made six new signings altogether as part of a huge £216m spree.

But the Daily Mirror suggests signing No 7 could soon be on the way in the form of Arias.

He is a free agent after leaving Atletico Madrid at the end of last season. The 30-year-old moved to the Spanish capital in summer 2018, costing a fee of £11m from PSV Eindhoven.

However, his impact was minimal with the Colombian managing just 51 appearances over four seasons. During that time, he made loan moves to Bayer Leverkusen and Granada. Indeed, he played 14 times for the latter last season in LaLiga.

That form wasn’t enough to earn a permanent move and it was little surprise when Atletico Madrid decided against extending his deal.

Now a free agent, he’s reportedly in line to sign a short-term deal with United.

Now 30, he’s also earned 54 caps for Colombia, so boasts plenty of experience and know-how.

Santiago Arias to fix problem position for Man Utd

Arias’ signing will provide Ten Hag with more options at right-back. That position is currently occupied by Diogo Dalot, who has started all seven of United’s games so far this season.

However, over the long-term, there’s a feeling that his place in the side might be in question.

Indeed, United also have Aaron Wan-Bissaka on their books, though the £50m man has been limited to just four minutes of action. Indeed, he will surely be allowed to leave in January if a suitable offer comes his way.

The likes of Crystal Palace and West Ham were both linked with summer moves for Wan-Bissaka. And while a move did not materialise, the Red Devils will not stand in his way should an approach be made in the winter window.

Truth be told, United just need Wan-Bissaka off their books. A fine tackler, the player lacks the ability to score and create that all top modern-day full-backs need.

And while a decent Premier League right-back, he’s just not of the standard needed at Old Trafford.

NEWCASTLE PLANNING TWO JANUARY DEALS

Newcastle United are planning two arrivals in January with the wheels already in motion to complete the deals.

First-up, the Magpies are seemingly moving ahead of Arsenal to sign Benfica’s experienced star Alex Grimaldo. He’s now in the final year of his contract and will be up for grabs for just £8.6m (€10m) in the new year.

The Gunners are reportedly among his admirers – but Mikel Arteta has Kieran Tierney and Oleksande Zinchenko, while Nuno Tavaraes is impressing out on loan with Marseille.

Grimaldo was linked with Manchester City over the summer. However, Pep Guardiola’s side opted to sign Sergio Gomez instead.

As such, a move to the North-East looks the most likely outcome with Eddie Howe looking to add competition for Matt Targett.

Newcastle target Andrey Santos

Newcastle are also ready to firm up their interest in Vasco de Gama midfielder Andrey Santos, rpeorts iNews.

The teenager has been impressing in Brazil’s second tier, playing 27 times and scoring five goals, despite being just 18 years of age.

Per multiple sources, Newcastle will have to pay as much as £30.1m (€35m) to sign the teenage prospect. That seems like a meaty fee and negotiations are reportedly continuing over both a reduction to that fee and how it can be structured.

WEST BROM TO FINALISE TOM ROGIC DEAL

West Brom are reportedly closing on the signing of free agent midfielder Tom Rogic.

The Australian is a free agent after leaving Celtic over the summer and surprisingly did not get fixed up with a new club.

However, that wait looks set to end with Steve Bruce’s side on the verge of sealing his signing.

He is expected to sign on the dotted line in a matter of days, reports the Express & Star.

The 29-year-old will become the sixth signing of the summer for Bruce at West Brom.

A player of huge experience, he has won six Scottish titles, 10 Scottish League Cups and 10 Scottish Cups.

Albion also signed free agent Martin Kelly this summer after his release by Crystal Palace. The Baggies are also offering a trial to former Stoke full-back Erik Pieters, though a decision on the Dutchman is yet to be made.