Tottenham Hotspur look set to beat Manchester United to the signature of Hector Moreno after the Mexican defender told Espanyol he wants to leave Estadi Cornellà-El Prat this summer following a meeting with officials of the north London club.
OLD TRAFFORD INTEREST?
Red Devils boss Louis van Gaal has been credited with an interest in bringing Moreno to Manchester United as he continues his search for centre-back replacements after the recent departures of Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand.
Moreno, who is currently starring for Miguel Herrera's side at the World Cup in Brazil, ordered his agent to make Espanyol aware of his desire to find a new club after the tournament, and White Hart Lane - not Old Trafford - appears to be the player's most likely destination.
Mauricio Pochettino has been utilising his contacts in Spain - from his time in charge of Espanyol - to push Spurs ahead of Manchester United to the front of the queue for the player, but they'll have to be prepared to pay more than the €9 million offered by Russian giants Rubin Kazan for Moreno during the January transfer window.
The former Southampton manager is yet to make any signings since replacing Tim Sherwood at Tottenham, but could press ahead with plans to secure Moreno's signature ahead of fellow suitors Manchester United and Hull City.
With Michael Dawson, Younes Kaboul and Vlad Chiriches all linked with moves away from north London this summer, Moreno could prove to be a quality addition to Pochettino's first-team squad for next season.
The stylish defender showed his class in Mexico's 0-0 draw with Brazil last Tuesday and will be hoping to progress to the knockout stages with a positive result in their final Group A match against Croatia on Monday evening.
WORLD CUP HOPES
Mexico are currently joint top with host nation Brazil, and know that a point will be enough to see them through to the last 16 irrespective of the Selecao's result against Cameroon.