Manchester United Transfer Tracker: Week of July 8 News and Rumours

Max TowleAnalyst IJuly 8, 2013

Manchester United Transfer Tracker: Week of July 8 News and Rumours

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    With Manchester United's preseason tour looming, the club will be working frantically behind the scenes to secure their top summer transfer targets.

    New manager David Moyes has already hinted at making a bevvy of new signings in the coming months (via The Metro).

    Speaking to reporters at his first press conference at Old Trafford, the Scotsman said: "I want to strengthen the squad, and I’ll try to make a few signings before our preseason tour begins, but time is closing in on us now."

    Updated through the week, here is the latest United transfer speculation. 

Moyes Tells Mourinho Rooney Is Not for Sale

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    Wayne Rooney's premature return home from Manchester United's preseason tour has sparked wild speculation back home.

    Some believe the forward's apparent hamstring injury to be genuine, many others have called it manager David Moyes' way of getting rid of a bad influence on the squad.

    Chelsea's Jose Mourinho took the opportunity this week to profess his admiration for the forward, telling reporters "He's a player that I like very much" (via ESPN).

    Moyes has hit back at the Blues' boss immediately, saying "Wayne is a Manchester United player and it will remain that way. I think Jose said, in his comments that he doesn't normally talk about other players. But it does happen."

    Either way, United fans just want the dispute reolved.

Thiago Set to Join Bayern

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    Brace yourself United fans, this one is not going to make for pretty reading.

    In circumstances similar to the Lucas Moura debacle last summer, it seems top Manchester United transfer target Thiago Alcantara is set to snub the Red Devils for another club.

    According to a report in Marca, the talented attacking midfielder is on the verge of linking up with Pep Guardiola at Bayern Munich (h/t ESPN).

    "Marca are reporting the 22-year-old could be announced as a new Bayern player as soon as Thursday," the report claims.

    It will now be up to Moyes to look elsewhere for creative midfield options.

Red Devils in Fight for Jovetic

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    David Moyes will look to make a splash in this summer's transfer market.

    One big name player who has been linked with a move is Fiorentina forward Stevan Jovetic.

    The Montenegro international is coming off a terrific season, helping Serie A side Fiorentina to Champions League qualification.

    According to a report in The Mirror, "United boss David Moyes has turned to the Montenegro international after failing to convince Borussia Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski to move to Old Trafford."

    The same source also claims Manchester City are also in the running for the 23-year-old.

United to Up Bid for Leighton Baines

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    After the Red Devils' first bid of £12 million for Leighton Baines was rejected, it seems they are undeterred.

    The Mirror claim Manchester United will approach Everton with an improved offer for the talented full-back this week.

    "New United boss David Moyes wants his former Toffees defender to join him at Old Trafford as he reshapes the squad left for him by the now-retired Sir Alex Ferguson and will endorse a £14 million move to land him," the report states.

    "Baines returned to pre-season training on Monday and is understood to be keen to make the switch to the champions, despite his loyalty to Everton."

    The future of current United left-back Patrice Evra remains in doubt.

United Target Thiago to Start Training with Barca

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    Manchester United are no closer to clinching the signing of Thiago Alcantara according to a report on

    The Barcelona attacking midfielder is due to start training with the Spanish side this week amid speculation linking him with a move to the Red Devils.

    According to the report, "The Red Devils have offered the 22-year-old a £6.2 million-per-year contract to move to Old Trafford, but as yet the two clubs have not reached an agreement."

    "And now Barcelona spokesman Toni Freixa has stated that Thiago will join up with his current team-mates on Monday after his summer break."

    Thiago is considered one of the elite young talents on the market this summer.

Moyes Tight-Lipped on Thiago Progress

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    The most significant transfer saga for Manchester United at present is the chase for uber-talented Barcelona attacking midfielder Thiago Alcantara.

    The deal that looked like being completed two weeks ago has stalled, with little in the way of development being reported since.

    David Moyes was unwilling to give away much at his first press conference, though refused to rule out a move for the 22-year-old.

    "Manchester United will always be close to the best players. I will inform the supporters as much as I can," he said.

    "Some things are confidential but I am doing everything I possibly can to strengthen the current English champions." 

United Close to Clinching Thiago Transfer

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    Despite Moyes refusing to get drawn into speculation, The Sun claims that the Red Devils are close to clinching a deal for Thiago.

    A report from the British tabloid states: "Sources close to the Spanish Under-21 midfielder say a five-year deal worth an initial £17.5 million are ‘well advanced’ and that 'only little details remain to close the operation'."

    "It seems the move could be confirmed this week after reports from Spain suggested the 22-year-old has opted to quit the Nou Camp, to maximise his chances of making Spain’s World Cup squad next summer."

    The 22-year-old lit up the recent Euro U-21 Championships, scoring a hat-trick for his victorious country in the final.

    He is considered one of the brightest young prospects in world football.

United Target Lewandowski to Join Bayern

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    Polish striker Robert Lewandowski has been in Manchester United's crosshairs for well over a year.

    The Borussia Dortmund hitman scored a cracking 36 goals in all competitions for his club last season, including 10 in the Champions League.

    Unfortunately for the Red Devils, it seems as if Lewandowski will not be moving to Manchester—not this year or the next.

    That is, according to Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp, who told Welt am Sonntag that the 24-year-old will join Bundesliga rivals Bayern Munich on a free transfer next summer (h/t Daily Mail).

    "I think it is a known fact that Robert is going to play for Bayern after the upcoming season," he said. 

Garay Move Worries Nemanja Vidic

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    Manchester United captain Nemanja Vidic was a saviour for the Red Devils last term.

    The Serbian central defender's return from injury at the beginning of the packed winter period provided a much-needed boost to a struggling back line.

    He was sat front-and-centre next to David Moyes at the Scottish boss' first press conference, too—a sign that his future lies firmly at Old Trafford.

    Not according to the Daily Star, though, who claim that United's interest in defender Ezequiel Garay has left him worried for his first-team place.

    "Vidic, 31 is said to be concerned about United’s reported interest in Benfica centre-half Ezequiel Garay, 26," the report states.

Usain Bolt to Play for Manchester United

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    Before we all get excited, this one is cheating a wee bit.

    Usain Bolt is not moving to Old Trafford to link up with David Moyes and Manchester United, but he is to don the famous red shirt for a game.

    The Jamaican Olympic gold medal-winning sprinter has been added to the United squad to play in Rio Ferdinand's upcoming testimonial match.

    According to The Sun: "The world’s fastest man will pull on a Red Devil’s shirt for the match against Seville at Old Trafford."

    The exhibition game is scheduled to take place next month. Perhaps Moyes will be keeping an eye on Bolt to improve his side's wing play?