Rumour Reel: Pep ponders Ter Stegen as Hart replacement at Manchester City
Lee Gormley | August 12, 2016
Coral’s rumour reel
The Premier League will return to action on Saturday afternoon for the 2016/17 season after a summer of international football at Euro 2016 and the Olympics, but as the campaign kicks-off, there are still transfer dealings to be done.
Man City seek Ter Stegen as Hart replacement
One club reportedly looking to continue their summer splurge before the transfer window slams shut on August 31st is Manchester City. Their new boss Pep Guardiola is aiming to land Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen in the coming weeks, putting Joe Hart’s future in doubt.
The Spanish tactician has already spent well in excess of £100m at his new club this summer, with a host of big-money signings arriving at the Etihad, and he is now seeking Barca’s shot stopper Ter Stegen as a Hart replacement.
England’s number one goal guard endured a disastrous Euro 2016 campaign and his underwhelming performances have cast doubts over his career in sky blue, while Guardiola is keen to capture a ‘sweeper-keeper’ type goalie this summer.
The 24-year-old German has supposedly become unwilling to remain number two to veteran Claudio Bravo at the Nou Camp and he could soon join compatriots Leroy Sane and Ilkay Gundogan as summer acquisitions on the blue half of Manchester.
Chelsea close in on Mario
Over to London, and 2015 top-flight champions Chelsea are hoping to secure a new midfielder for the campaign ahead, as they look to banish their hapless last term when they finished in 10th position.
Now under the guidance of former Italy boss Antonio Conte, the Blues will aim to challenge for silverware once again and their squad could soon be boosted by the arrival of Portugal international Joao Mario.
The 23-year-old Sporting Lisbon ace holds a substantial £39m price-tag though and the capital club also have Inter Milan as a rival for his signature, with the Serie A side prepared to meet such an evaluation.
Mario was a key component of his nation’s Euro 2016 success in France this summer, featuring in every game in their campaign, and the talented midfield anchorman could soon be swapping the Estadio Jose Alvalade for Stamford Bridge.
Toffees target Mata signing
The future of Manchester United playmaker Juan Mata has been shrouded in doubt since the arrival of his former Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford, and his recent humiliation in the Community Shield victory has increased speculation.
Mourinho thrust the Spaniard into proceedings at Wembley for under half an hour before taking him off again and, after Mata’s evident frustration, Everton are ready to capitalise by offering him a pathway out of the club.
Ronald Koeman recently added Wales international skipper Ashley Williams to his squad to boost his defensive ranks, but a swoop for Mata would see the Toffees’ attacking options bolstered significantly for the imminent campaign too.
The Red Devils remain reluctant to let the 28-year-old depart this summer, with Mourinho still seemingly having a spot for the attacking midfielder in his set-up, but Koeman will look to test their resolve with a bid in the coming weeks.