Football transfer rumours: Matuidi to Manchester United or Arsenal?

Stuart Goodwin
Photograph: TF-Images/Getty Images

The Mill was down for some long overdue maintenance overnight, offering an opportunity for its gnomic, light-deprived team to get the waders on and finally jab a Vileda Supermop at the knotweed and slime that’s accrued on its spokes. We’re delighted to report that some additional motion has been achieved, and a years-worth of Pogba fluff has been removed along with some extremely Eden Hazardous waste.

Happily, safely wrapped in a Lidl bag for life was a bit of tittle-tattle from 2016, which we’ve given an hour or two out on the line and can now re-present to you as if box-fresh: Blaise Matuidi to Manchester United. Juve’s deep-lying midfielder is now 32 but has been linked to a Premier League move since JLS’ Beat Again was top of the charts. Back in 2009, the player was uncapped for France but a target for Arsène Wenger’s Arsenal – now Mikel Arteta has designs on thwarting Ole Gunnar Solskjær in pursuit of the 84-cap veteran. The Gunners also have Atlético Madrid’s Thomas Partey on their radar.

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Sadio Mané thoroughly enjoyed his Monday Night Football, sealing Liverpool’s comeback victory over West Ham eight minutes from time. He reportedly plans to celebrate by cancelling his membership of the L3 Costco, resigning from the book club he attends with Jordan Henderson and Dejan Lovren and jabbing a fork firmly into Jürgen Klopp’s back by taking either the Real Madrid or Barcelona coin.

Zinedine Zidane is apparently less than impressed with what his forward line looks like when Eden Hazard fractures his fibula, and would very much like the in-form Senegalese forward thank you very much. Barça, meanwhile, may be prepared to pay as much as £225m, a fee which includes some extortionate premium sneakily inserted when contracts were exchanged for Philippe Coutinho.

In needless pressure corner, the “new Dani Alves’” could be on his way to Manchester City. That’s 17-year-old Brazilian Yan Couto, a former futsal star who (cue fistpumps from the football editors) was picked out as one of the Guardian’s potential Next Generation stars last October. Currently playing for Coritiba, £5m to the club may be enough to secure his services, with a nod, a wink and £5m on the end of a fishing rod to the player if he manages to jump through assorted performance-related hoopers.

Amiens’ Serhou Guirassy is the forward on Graham Potter’s mind, with Brighton hoping to fend off West Ham for the Frenchman’s signature. £20m is the kind of figure the Ligue 1 club have in mind.

Finally, depending on where you read, Timo Werner is either being all “come hither, Mr Klopp”, standoffish and respectful of his RB Leipzig contract, or getting his agent to project his alleged £30m release on to the Shankly Gates. Regardless, it’s safe to say this may not be the last we hear of links with a move to Anfield.