Thomas Vermaelen's move to Manchester United has taken a new twist with reports claiming that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger wants a cash-plus-player deal - and the Express says the French boss is targeting one of Tom Cleverley, Nani or Chris Smalling.
Vermaelen has fallen down the pecking order at Arsenal despite being club captain, and new Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal wants to sign him for around £11 million to add some much-needed depth to his back line.
However it is now being reported that Wenger would like a player in return for the 28-year-old, and the Express are reporting that he has his eyes on either Cleverley, Smalling and Nani.
That news is likely to surprise Manchester United fans, with none of the three particularly highly rated by the Old Trafford faithful. Nani recently put pen to paper on a new long-term deal but has been linked with a move to Juventus in recent weeks, while Cleverley was heavily criticised by fans last term for a string of uninspiring performances.
Smalling was linked with Arsenal before he joined Manchester United, but using him as part of a deal for Vermaelen would defeat the object of Van Gaal trying to add depth to his defensive unit.
Manchester United transfer news:
Conflicting reports continue to circulate about Arturo Vidal - the deal could be off because he has been deemed to costly by the Red Devils (Daily Mail)
Vidal has confirmed Manchester United's interest but says he is calm over his future (The Guardian)
Liverpool could launch a surprising £44 million raid for Manchester United transfer target Marco Reus (The Express)
Manchester United are still in for Angel di Maria despite recent speculation that they could miss out on the Argentinian to PSG (The Mirror)
Manchester United have been valued at $3.6 million by Forbes - making them the most valuable club on the planet (Forbes)
Louis van Gaal has orded Manchester United players to eat together more regularly in order to help improve team spirit (Daily Mail)
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