Rumour Reel: Stoke seek Portugal ace Nani as headline summer signing
Lee Gormley | July 2, 2016
Coral’s rumour reel
Following the opening of the summer transfer window, there was an instant flurry of business from Premier League clubs, with the likes of Crystal Palace and Manchester United getting deals done swiftly ahead of the 2016/17 season.
Nani high on Stoke target list
Stoke City are soon hoping to follow suit by landing a marquee signing this summer, with boss Mark Hughes having outlined Fenerbahce wideman and former Manchester United attacker Nani as his main priority in the coming weeks.
Nani is enjoying an impressive Euro 2016 campaign with Portugal, helping them to have reached a semi-final showdown with Wales next week in France, and his dazzling showings across the Channel have caught the eye of the Potters manager.
Hughes is known for landing high-profile names through his promising contacts across the continent, having overseen the likes of Bojan Krkic and Xhedran Shaqiri arriving at the Britannia Stadium, and Nani is the next star name on his radar.
The former Old Trafford winger, now 29 years of age, has netted twice in the France finals and could be tempted by a return to England, where he helped the Red Devils lift four top-flight trophies, a League Cup, four Charity Shields and a Champions League crown in eight seasons.
Arsenal close to capturing Japanese prospect
Arsene Wenger is well regarded for scouting some of the most talented youngsters across Europe and the Arsenal boss could soon be landing yet another promising starlet for his Gunners ranks, with Japanese sensation Takuma Asano close to sealing a move.
The 21-year-old Japan international, who plays for Sanfrecce Hiroshima, is viewed by the Frenchman as one for the future but will make the youngster train with his first team to help his immediate development in London upon arriving.
Asano is highly regarded as the next big superstar in his homeland but would likely be loaned out for his first season at the club, with the talented attacker set to become the third Japanese player to ply his trade under Wenger.
Junichi Inamoto was somewhat of a cult hero when arriving at Highbury in 2001 and only made four appearances before departing for current Championship club Fulham, while Ryo Miyaichi was released last season after five injury-plagued years in the capital.
Pogba OT return looks promising
Following the arrival of Zlatan Ibrahimovic on a free transfer, and Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s switch also looking likely, Man Utd are making swift movement in this transfer window and new boss Jose Mourinho is pushing for another huge deal.
Paul Pogba has become the hottest prospect in European football since rising to prominence with Juventus after leaving the Red Devils back in 2012, and his performances in France this summer have only added to his stature.
Mourinho is keen to land the midfield maestro at Old Trafford to boost his central areas for next season, though a return to Old Trafford for Pogba is being held up by Real Madrid’s interest too.
The France international will first try to help his nation clinch Euro 2016 glory on home soil before thinking of his future, but it’s clear that Man Utd are extremely keen to reunite with their former academy graduate this year.
With the summer in full swing, there’s gossip aplenty in Coral’s Rumour Reel, so check out other editions to ensure you don’t miss any tasty tabloid titbits.