Premier League big boys on alert as Barcelona set to sell Song and Alves
Arsenal, Premier League leaders Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United are all on red alert as, according to the tabloids, Barcelona may let wingback Dani Alves and former Gunners destroyer Alex Song leave the Nou Camp this summer.
Coral reported earlier in March that Catalan giants Barca will try again to lure David Luiz away from Chelsea before the World Cup starts in his native Brazil by making a £25m bid.
This, coupled with the presence of other compatriots Willian, Ramires and Oscar on the books at Stamford Bridge, would seem to give the Blues an edge on their Premier League rivals in negotiations to sign Luiz’s international teammate Alves.
Jose Mourinho’s men are 5/4 favourites to lift the top-flight title this term, but will face competition from Arsenal (20/1) for Alves. He enters the final year of his contract at Barcelona next season, so they don’t want to lose him for nothing in 2015.
Arsene Wenger has yet to get current Gunners right back Bacary Sagna, who is the same age as Alves, to commit his future to the club.
City (13/10 for the Premier League) have also previously shown interest in the attack-minded Brazilian, who recently against them in the Champions League, and a rumoured Etihad exit for Micah Richards this summer could see that rekindled.
While Tata Martino being prepared to let Alves go comes as something of a surprise, Barca misfit Song leaving, meanwhile, is expected. Since joining for £15m in 2012, the Cameroon holding midfielder has struggled to make an impact in La Liga.
Former club Arsenal could offer Song a way out of his Barcelona nightmare and take him back to the Emirates. Wenger has seen the value of re-signing defensive midfielder Mathieu Flamini this term as the Frenchman has added steel to the silk of the Gunners style.
Alternatively, Song could throw his lot in with City and join old Arsenal teammates Gael Clichy and Samir Nasri at the Etihad. Manuel Pellegrini is seeking midfield cover and, because rumoured target Blaise Matuidi signed a contract extension with PSG in February, this could be a cheaper option.
City are also set to lose Gareth Barry because his deal expires at the end of the season. Young Jack Rodwell continues to struggle with injuries, leaving the unconvincing Javi Garcia as the only backup to Fernandinho and Yaya Toure.
Song could also provide the midfield crunch missing from the Red Devils under David Moyes. United are lacking an imposing physical presence in this area and the chance to link-up with Robin van Persie again may quell speculation that the Dutchman is unsettled at Old Trafford.
Moyes takes his team to West Bromwich Albion in Premier League action next – their first game since losing an unbeaten record against Greek opposition when they went down 2-0 to Olympiakos in their recent Champions League first leg clash. Back the Red Devils to a win at The Hawthorns at 8/11.