After Manchester United’s £12million bid for Everton defender Leighton Baines was rejected yesterday, David Moyes is said to be readying a second offer.
The left-back is seen as the ideal long-term replacement for Patrice Evra (who has been linked with a return to Monaco). While his free-kick ability and wing-play mean his defensive capabilities are just one part of his game.
Moyes’ improved fee is not being reported, but it is likely to be at least £15million. Although the speed with which the Toffees rejected the first offer, and their statement of intent to keep the England international at the club, suggests United may have to offer in excess of £20million to tempt Bill Kenwright’s hand.
There is little doubt Baines would be an excellent addition to the United squad. But with Everton desperate to hold on to him it may ultimately come down to the player, and whether he wishes to push for a move or if he is happy to sign a new contract at Goodison Park.
One player who may be on his way out of United – if only temporarily – is Nick Powell. The midfielder’s arrival prompted much excitement last summer. And yet he has barely played for the first team, prompting the likelihood of a season spent on loan.
Doncaster Rovers manager Paul Dickov has spoken of his interest in Powell, although he knows the fight for him will be tough.
“If Nick Powell is a player we would like here,” he said, “I’m sure there are ten Premier League clubs and another 20 Championship clubs that would want him as well.
“But without naming names, that’s the quality of player we are looking to sign.”
And finally, after reports earlier in the week that Cristiano Ronaldo was planning talks with United officials about a possible return, Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has moved to quash the speculation.
“He is happier every day here,” Perez said. “He wants to go into history as someone very important at Real Madrid.”
image: © wonker