Paper Round: United, Spurs chase League Two star

Sir Alex Ferguson’s rebuilding plans for his Manchester United squad this summer appear to include a move for Crewe starlet Nick Powell.

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The 18-year-old attacking midfielder may be playing in the fourth tier of English football, but his 15 goals for the Railwaymen as they moved into the League Two play-offs have caught the attention of Old Trafford, report the Daily Mirror.

In fact, despite the title race going down to the wire, Fergie still found time to watch Powell first-hand and evaluate him in recent weeks after a tip-off from United scouts.

The Red Devils will not have things all their own way should they make a move, however – Tottenham are also eager to snap up the player who had reportedly attracted firm offers from Premier League clubs in January.

It’s normally Arsenal who are associated with moves for unheralded rising stars, but The Sun claims this morning that Arsene Wenger will break that pattern and make the first move for Clint Dempsey.

The Fulham midfielder, 29, has had his best season in domestic football, scoring 23 goals for his club.

With Dempsey stalling on a new deal at Craven Cottage and having no shortage of suitors, The Sun reckons Wenger will look to steal a march on his rivals by bidding early.

But the Mirror meanwhile insists that Liverpool are still the favourites to sign Dempsey, with the idea of signing an American star appealing to the club’s US owners.

Moving for Dempsey is not the only out-of-character deal Arsenal are being linked with on the back pages.

The Metro claims that the Gunners will prove their determination to keep captain Robin van Persie at the club with a £250,000-a-week deal.

Returning to bids that are in keeping with clubs’ transfer policies, the Mirror suggests Everton are monitoring West Brom’s Jonas Olsson, with the defender’s contract set to expire.

With managerial uncertainty at the Hawthorns, David Moyes is set to pounce and bring Olsson from the Midlands to Merseyside.

Another man set to leave the Midlands is Aston Villa’s Spanish defender Carlos Cuellar, who bade farewell to fans on Twitter. Meanwhile, beleaguered Villa boss Alex McLeish has called to be given more funds in the summer after all but ensuring the club’s safety.

And finally, Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has said he expects the club to invest in the squad this summer, despite some extravagant purchases in the last 18 months having struggled.

“We are Liverpool, we will bounce back,” said Gerrard in the Daily Telegraph. “We will strengthen in the summer and we will come back and fight again. That’s what this club does. All through my career it’s been about highs and lows. This is a big low.”

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