Manchester United Transfer News and Rumours Tracker: Week of January 20

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistJanuary 20, 2014

Manchester United Transfer News and Rumours Tracker: Week of January 20

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    Alastair Grant/Associated Press

    Manchester United's European excursions are yet to bear fruit in the transfer market, and with little over a week left in the January transfer window, David Moyes' recruitment opening nears its inevitable close.

    The Red Devils boss is reportedly looking at midfield and defence as the two main areas in need of strengthening, with targets from Bayern Munich, Everton, Chelsea and Sevilla all in the headlines early on this week.

    However, the biggest news on the agenda is that a certain Blues misfit could be closing in on a record-breaking move to the Theatre of Dreams.

    Be sure to check back here for all the latest rumours hitting Old Trafford in the coming days, with the Premier League giants in dire need of some fresh faces.

Inter Seeking Player-Plus-Cash Deal for Fredy Guarin

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    Dino Panato/Getty Images

    Thursday, Jan. 23

    News of Juan Mata's incoming arrival at Manchester United is just the first piece of transfer news for Red Devils fans to get excited about this week, with Inter's box-to-box asset Fredy Guarin now supposed to be on the club's radar.

    According to The Independent's Ian Herbert, the Colombian international could come to the English giants after seeing a move to Juventus fall through several days ago.

    A passage from Herbert's report reads:

    Inter have instructed Guarin’s agent to find a club for the 27-year-old  as they need the money. They may be willing to do business if they could take Javier Hernandez in exchange for the €20m (£16.4m) Colombia international. Guarin is the kind of  box-to-box player who United seem most to need.

    Guarin's combination of combative tackling spliced with fine playmaking and a threat on goal to boot could be the answer that Moyes has been looking for in his engine room.

    What's more, the South American would be available for Champions League football given that Inter haven't featured in European competition this term.

Chelsea Accept Manchester United's £37 Million Offer

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    Alastair Grant/Associated Press

    Update: Thursday, Jan. 23

    Manchester United have seen a £37 million bid for Mata's services accepted in a move that would smash the Red Devils' current transfer record.

    BBC Sport's David Bond and Ben Smith report that the Spaniard is inches away from a move to Old Trafford, subject to a medical.

    The pair write:

    United have had a bid, believed to be in the region of £37m, accepted for Mata, who is set to sign a four-and-a-half year deal at Old Trafford.

    The 25-year-old is due to fly to Manchester by helicopter before sealing a move to the Premier League champions.

    Mata's impending move would certainly be the signal of intent that many at the Theatre of Dreams have been waiting for in what could be the transfer that ignites Moyes' reign with the Premier League champions.

    - - End of Update - -

    Wednesday, Jan. 22

    David Bond of BBC Sport claims that Manchester United submitted a £35 million bid for Juan Mata's services on Wednesday, which they're hoping is enough to prise the Spaniard away from his West London surroundings.

    It's common knowledge that the two-time Chelsea Player of the Year has fallen out of favour with Jose Mourinho at the helm of the club, but a departure could be imminent.

    An excerpt from Bond's report reads:

    United deny making an official offer, but an initial bid has been tabled through intermediaries acting on behalf of the Premier League champions.

    Mata did not train with Chelsea's first team on Wednesday.

    Should the deal go through, it would be both a record purchase for the Red Devils and a record sale for Chelsea, smashing the deals concluded for Dimitar Berbatov and Arjen Robben, respectively.

    Moyes is in need of a certain quality in his midfield, and despite all the criticism that's come his way thus far in his Old Trafford reign, Mata's acquisition would certain prove some of the manager's doubters wrong.

Bayern's Dante Linked with Manchester United Move

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    Matthias Schrader/Associated Press

    Tuesday, Jan. 21

    If David Moyes' critics were of the impression that the Scot has been slightly overambitious in recent weeks, then news of apparent interest in Bayern Munich defender Dante won't help in dissuading those views.

    The Brazilian centre-back has emerged as one of the world's elite central defenders since moving to the Allianz Arena from Borussia Monchengladbach in 2012.

    That pedigree has attracted the attention of Manchester United according to Fox Sports Brasil (h/t The Mirror's Ed Malyon), adding that player may be intrigued by the move.

    According to the report, Dante noted: "I'm thankful for the Manchester United interest, it will all be sorted out by the end of the month."

    That comment of course doesn't give much away, but it beggars belief that Dante would abandon Pep Guardiola's ship for Old Trafford given the extremely different trajectory that each club is currently enjoying.

David Moyes Hoping to Lure Seamus Coleman from Goodison Park

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    Jon Super/Associated Press

    Monday, Jan. 20

    Having brought in Marouane Fellaini over the summer, Moyes is once again looking to his former club in a bid to beef up his ranks this month.

    That's according to Tom Hopkinson of the Mirror, who reports that United are eager to strike a £15 million agreement for the services of Seamus Coleman.

    Bought for just £60,000 in 2008, the Toffees stand to make a huge profit from the Republic of Ireland international should they choose to sell.

    Coleman is one of Premier League's in-form right-backs, and just one of the figures who has shot the Merseysiders into top-four contention this term.

    Meanwhile, David Anderson of the Mirror has noted the agent of Rafael and Fabio da Silva has said both players are likely to leave Old Trafford in 2014, sparking the need for a new option at right-back. 

United Face Atletico Madrid Competition for Juan Mata's Signature

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    Lefteris Pitarakis/Associated Press

    Monday, Jan. 20

    Atletico Madrid are believed to be favourites to draw Juan Mata away from Stamford Bridge this winter, according to Dean Jones of the Mirror, who suggests that a loan move is on the table.

    Jones says that United remain interested in the Blues midfielder, who is closer to a Stamford Bridge exit after the club failed to offer assurances over first-team minutes.

    An excerpt from the report reads:

    Manchester United have made contact in hope of doing a £20million deal but a loan move to Atletico Madrid seems the most likely option now for the Spanish midfielder.

    Mata’s father, Juan senior, acts as his agent and made a trip to London to discover whether he will be given more game time between now and the end of the season. But Chelsea officials could not make any promises and Mata is ready to seek a move.

    Mata has started in 11 of the Blues' 22 Premier League matches so far this season, and will be eager to secure more playing time ahead of the 2014 World Cup.

    United's need for creative quality in midfield makes it of little wonder why Moyes would be interested, but Jose Mourinho's side won't be keen on selling to one of their domestic rivals. 

Alberto Moreno Eyed as Leighton Baines Alternative

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    Fernando Bustamante/Associated Press

    Monday, Jan. 20

    Manchester United could increase their scouting efforts for target Alberto Moreno after learning that Leighton Baines is close to agreeing a new three-and-a-half-year contract at Goodison Park.

    The Sevilla left-back has long been admired by the Red Devils, but more experienced defenders have taken priority in the pecking order up until now.

    The Mirror's Dave Kidd writes:

    Baines, 29, will now sign a new Goodison Park £75,000-a-week contract this week, likely to be for three-and-a-half years.

    Moreno, rated at £18m, is now United’s No.1 option, but has also attracted interest from several of Europe’s top clubs, including Real Madrid, so Moyes will face an uphill task to sign him if United fail to qualify for the Champions League.

    For now, the club will persevere with Patrice Evra as their first choice on the left side of defence. However, with the French international out of contract in the summer, a capable replacement will be needed by Moyes.