The Express: Chelsea hijack City's Benatia bid
- 30 May 2014 07:26
- Posted by @NieldyMCFC
There’s a host of City-related transfer talks adorning the paper and pixelated pages of the media this morning, so read on to find out the latest rumoured incomings and outgoings from the Etihad Stadium…
Chelsea have reported hijacked City’s plans to bring in Roma star Mehdi Benatia after offering the Italian club £18million plus striker Romelu Lukaku.
“Reports coming out of Italy claim that Jose Mourinho is desperate to bring the Morocco international to Stamford Bridge, and Il Messaggero believes he is prepared to do whatever it takes to stop the strong centre-back from joining Manuel Pellegrini's side,” claims The Express’ Anthony Chapman.
“City are yet to agree a fee with Roma for Benatia despite sorting out personal terms with the player, but will now have to table an offer of at least £38million if they want his signature, as Lukaku is valued by the Blues at around £20million.
“The move is sure to infuriate Pellegrini, who has endured a tempestuous relationship with Mourinho ever since the two butted heads during their time in La Liga.
“The Chilean is keen to bring Benatia to the Etihad as he searches for someone worthy of partnering club captain Vincent Kompany in the heart of defence, and may have to turn his attentions to Porto star Eliaquim Mangala if Benatia agrees a move to west London.”
“Mangala, who is the subject of transfer interest from the likes of Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea, says discussions over a move must wait until this summer's showpiece comes to an end,” reports Rhys Turrell.
“Mangala, 23, has leapt to the top of the wanted lists of a host of European clubs after a series of stellar displays for the Portuguese giants this season.
“Porto are likely to hold out for at least £30m for their star Frenchman, but that is unlikely to deter the Premier League trio, or fellow interested parties Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid.”
“The Spanish club want the City striker to replace Diego Costa who is poised to join Chelsea.
“City striker Negredo was a huge success in the first half of last season but lost his place towards the end.
“Atletico, who has also been linked with Spurs striker Roberto Soldado, believe they may be able to get Negredo as City have such a wealth of strikers.”
“Touré had seemingly been seeking a move away from the Etihad when he said it would be “an honour” to play for PSG and admitted that his agent was “hanging on the telephone and he knows what to do”. But yesterday the midfielder told the French radio station RFI that “the media took what I said out of context.”
“For the moment, there’s nothing planned,” Touré said. “Too many things have been said that annoyed me. I want to take advantage of this opportunity to put things into context. It’s very important. I simply said that it was nice to be a player who is quite coveted, and it was an honour to play for PSG.”
That’s all for today. Look-out for Saturday’s rumour and gossip round-up tomorrow…