Last Word on Football’s Football Transfer News focuses on transfer rumours from the Premier League. In today’s edition, Manchester United turn their attention to a West Ham United centre-back. Arsenal, meanwhile, eye another hot talent from Lorient, while Watford and Aston Villa line up two exiled Premier League stars.
Latest Premier League Transfer Rumours
Manchester United Eye Issa Diop Deal
Sky Sources understand that Issa Diop is of interest to Manchester United. The Red Devils are reportedly ready to spend £45 million plus a player to land the French centre-back. The Hammers, however, are not willing to accept any less than £60 million for the former Toulouse man. West Ham are not interested in selling and will remain steadfast against United’s pursuit.
It is clear that a centre-back is a priority for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer this season; he has already been unsuccessful in his chasing of Harry Maguire and Kalidou Koulibaly. After his £22 million move from Toulouse last summer, Diop made 38 appearances for the Hammers, with nine clean sheets. Diop, meanwhile, could become the next rung in United’s squad overhaul. Young, hungry players are clearly a priority, after Daniel James‘ signing and their interest in Sean Longstaff. Whether or not Diop is part of Solskjaer’s revolution remains to be seen.
Arsenal Resolute in Alexis Claude-Maurice Chase
Reports from Metro suggest that Arsenal are set to return with a third bid for Alexis Claude-Maurice. The Gunners have reportedly already agreed personal terms with the young French attacker, but a fee is yet to be agreed with Lorient. With Danny Welbeck gone, Unai Emery wants to replace him adequately. He also wants to tie down star strikers Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette to new contracts.
The Frenchman, a relative unknown in England, comes off the back of an impressive season with Lorient. The 21-year-old scored 14 goals in 35 appearances with the French second division side. This move would see Claude-Maurice reunite with Matteo Guendouzi, who has impressed since his move to North London last summer.
Arsenal’s limited budget this summer has been well-documented; with such financial restraints, they have to take risks. However, the Gunners will have to up their offer to £18 million for the talented youngster.
Watford Interested in Dawson
The Sun’s Alan Nixon claims Watford have entered the fray to sign Craig Dawson. With the Hornets keen on a homegrown player, the experienced defender fits the bill. That said, they face competition from Burnley for the English centre-back.
Dawson’s desire to leave West Bromwich Albion is clear; he recently changed agents in order to push the move. He even handed in a formal transfer request last summer following relegation. However, he stayed at the Hawthorns, unable to get West Brom promoted to the Premier League at the first attempt though. With the defender keen on a return to the promised land, Watford could offer him an escape route.
Aston Villa Transfer Rumours
Simon Jones of the Daily Mail reports that Aston Villa are fronting the chase for Jack Butland. The goalkeeper is keen on a return to the Premier League, after a year in the second division following Stoke’s relegation. The Potters, though, are holding out for £23 million, who is also said to be interesting Bournemouth.
Eddie Howe is not ready to spend that much on the 26-year-old goalkeeper, though, handing Villa the initiative. His Premier League experience, as well as international pedigree, is what attracts Dean Smith, who is targeting new recruits ahead of Villa’s first season in the Premier League since 2016. It also benefits both parties; since a Premier League return would allow Butland to stake his claim for a place in Gareth Southgate’s squad once again. Stoke City, on the other hand, may target Joe Hart as Butland’s replacement, should the move go ahead.