News has been breaking today all over the place regarding players leaving Ligue 1. It seems that Cardiff City could be the next team to take the plunge - the Welsh club have apparently agreed a fee with FC Lorient for central defender Bruno Ecuele-Manga.
The 25-year-old Gabonese international has been linked with moves to Arsenal, Everton, Southampton, Marseille and even AS Roma, but if the story from BBC Cardiff is to be believed, then he should next be playing for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in the English Championship.
BREAKING: Cardiff City set to sign Lorient captain and Gabon centre-back Bruno Manga in a deal worth more than £5m.— BBC Wales Sport (@BBCWalesSport) August 31, 2014
Lorient signed the defender in 2010 when they sold Laurent Koscielny to Arsenal for £10 million. In his four seasons, Ecuele-Manga has played 115 games for Lorient, and in three of those four campaigns he has featured in over 30 games.
During the first match of the 2012/13 season, he ruptured his medial and cruciate knee ligaments against Paris Saint-Germain. His side were leading 2-0 before he had to go off. They eventually drew 2-2 after Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored twice on his debut. He missed six months of the season, but came back better than ever.
During his time in France, Ecuele-Manga has developed into an international defender. He has made 36 appearances for his country, Gabon, and played in the squad that featured in the 2010 and 2012 African Cup of Nations.
He would be a perfect signing for any Premier League club, so for Cardiff to pull off this move it is a great sign of the Welsh outfit's ambitions. He brings power, desire, strength and a non-stop, all-action work-rate. He is fantastic in the air and is up for the increased challenge.
Ecuele-Manga has been at Lorient for four years and it is time for a new challenge for the defender. He needs that increased competition to take his game to the next level. He will be aiming to either push Cardiff back into the Premier League, or catch the eye of on-looking Premier League teams.
The deal is supposedly to be for around €5 million. At that price and Ecuele-Manga’s experience, it would be an absolute bargain for Cardiff and Solskjaer.