Report: Reading challenge duo for Ligue 1 defender Modou Diagne

Reading manager Jaap Stam

Stoke City and Middlesbrough will battle Reading for the signature of Modou Diagne this summer after standing out despite Nancy's Ligue 1 relegation.

Modou DiagneModou Diagne challenges Monaco sensation Kylian Mbappe

It’s just the harsh reality that relegation is always going to go hand-in-hand with the loss of several key players. Nancy will have been more than aware of this when their Ligue 1 life was brought to an end in 2016/17.

As a result, L’Equipe claim that centre-back Modou Diagne is expected to depart The Thistles this summer and there’s no shortage of suitors looking at the jet-heeled powerhouse.

Mid-table Premier League outfit Stoke City are reportedly in the chase for the £3.5 million Senegalese defender with recently relegated Middlesbrough also in the running.

Stoke City manager Mark HughesStoke City manager Mark Hughes may need defensive reinforcements

Furthermore, L’Equipe add that Reading, who will contest the play-off final against Huddersfield Town on March 29th, are also interested.

The report does not state whether the outcome of that Wembley clash will make or break The Royals’ hopes but it’s fair to say the Madejski would be a far more attractive destination if it was due to host Premier League football next season.

And the 23-year-old Diagne, who has spent his entire career at Nancy, has the potential to be an astute addition for Reading regardless of which division they find themselves in next season.

Modou Diagne

After all, Jaap Stam’s side finished third in the Championship last season despite conceding far more goals than any other side in the top six, including 19 more than Sheffield Wednesday just a place below them.

Therefore, it does not take a genius to work out where Reading need to strengthen this summer. And although Diagne hardly enjoyed a stellar season, he could represent an upgrade on the likes of Tyler Blackett or Paul McShane.

Reading's Tyler BlackettTyler Blackett

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