World Cup - Paper Round: Van Gaal to swoop for former City star

Manchester United are set to swoop for a former Manchester City star; Arsenal are preparing a double move; Mario Balotelli wants to force through a move to Arsenal and United, City and Tottenham are set to battle it out for a Dutch star - the latest stories making headlines in today's newspapers.

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Premier League - Van Gaal will wait to make Man United signings
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Manchester United coach Louis van Gaal (Reuters)

Manchester United to swoop for De Jong: New Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal is set to swoop for former Manchester City man Nigel de Jong, reports the Daily Star. De Jong, who is currently in Van Gaal’s Dutch squad at the World Cup, is on the books of AC Milan but is understood to be keen on a move back to the Premier League. United are expected to lodge a £10 million bid for the 29-year-old, who is a notorious hard-man and midfield enforcer.

Paper Round’s view: While De Jong’s links to City may be unpalatable to some United fans, this move makes sense as he would add bite to a United midfield that last season was overrun. The fee of £10 million is not too prohibitive for a player of his experience either. This is certainly a shock as he has not been linked with a return to the Premier League previously, but equally it would not be a surprise to see Van Gaal bring back his trusted midfielder to shore up the United ranks.

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Arsenal set for double swoop: Arsenal are set to secure the services of Alexis Sanchez and Morgan Schneiderlin, reports the Express. Sanchez, who has been one of the stand out performers at the World Cup, was thought to be on his way to Liverpool as a makeweight in the deal for Luis Suarez but Arsene Wenger has swooped and, according to reports in France, the Chilean is likely to move to the Emirates. Schneiderlin is said to favour a move to Arsenal over north London rivals Tottenham.

Paper Round’s view: While both players would provide reinforcement in areas where Arsenal are light, this story is mere speculation at the moment. The article does not mention any sort of fee for either player which also indicates that it is light on actual facts. This one is a case of waiting and seeing.

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Balotelli desperate to force through Arsenal move: After being unfairly blamed for his nation’s early exit from the World Cup, Mario Balotelli wants out of Italy, according to the Daily Mail. Balotelli is aware that Arsenal have other targets – namely Real Madrid’s Alvaro Morata – and is thus eager to push through a move.

Paper Round’s view: Balotelli can try to force a move all he wants but the cold hard facts are that Arsene Wenger has ruled out a move for the AC Milan player. This deal will not happen.

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Depay confirms interest from United, City and Tottenham: Memphis Depay has admitted he's aware of interest from Manchester United, Tottenham and Manchester City, claims the Daily Star. Depay bagged twice in the group stages at the World Cup and those performance have brought him to the attention of a host of Premier League clubs. Dempay said: "Of course I've read that Manchester United, Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur are interested. But no more than that. I'll see later. My agent Kees Ploegsma is here [in Brazil] too, but we are not talking about that kind of stuff. That is for after the World Cup."

Paper Round’s view: The 20-year-old PSV Eindhoven winger has all but confirmed his interest in a move with these quotes. It is fair to say that if United’s interest is genuine then they would have to be billed as favourites considering the Louis van Gaal connection.

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