Man Utd to swoop for Lewandowski and Isco? Sinclair to City?
The Charity Shield may be just two days away, but the rumour mill turns regardless. The Life’s a Pitch panel helps us separate fact from fiction as they look into three chunks of gossip relating to those two bickering neighbours, Manchester United and Manchester City. We start with the red half of Manchester. Has Alex Ferguson already made a deal to sign goal-mad Polish striker Robert Lewandowski (pictured) from Borussia Dortmund for the 2013-14 season? And could Spanish wonder-boy Isco also be arriving at Old Trafford? Meanwhile, at City, have Scott Sinclair’s Olympic displays been enough to win the heart of Roberto Mancini?
“Lewandowski’s outstanding,” says the Sunday Mirror’s David Walker. ”He looked good in the Euros, he’s a line-leader, a powerful centre-forward. The bit I find hard to accept is, with a German club of their status and ambition, that Dortmund are going to do an offset deal for next year. I’m sure if Alex Ferguson could have got him this summer, he would have taken him. I sense that Dortmund have said no to that. I can’t see there being a deal that’s been set up for 12 months’ time, but in 12 months’ time I could see Alex Ferguson and Man United going back for Lewandowski. So, marks out of ten for a deal done now for 12 months’ time? I give that a four.”
On the other side of Manchester, the People’s Tom Hopkinson reckons Scott Sinclair could be Man City’s first signing of the summer. “If you’d asked me a couple of weeks ago, I’d have said it was pie in the sky,” says Hopkinson. ”But I think there’s a very good chance of this deal going through now; somewhere around eight out of 10. I think he’s a great young talent. He’s done so well to pick himself up and dust himself down from what went on at Chelsea. He went away and proved he’s got the capability to be a Premier League footballer and I think his versatility would work very well for Manchester City.”
The Daily Telegraph’s Jason Burt has been keeping an eye on Málaga’s young attacking midfielder Isco, but thinks Man Utd might baulk at his £16m buy-out clause. “There’s been a lot of talk about this young player since he burst on to the scene at Valencia,” says Burt. “He was one of the B players there, didn’t quite make it through, he had a bit of a falling out with the coach and moved on to Málaga. Málaga have got their own [financial] problems now and people are exploiting that left, right and centre. United are in the market for a young, attacking player who fits the age profile. I wouldn’t see them doing business at that sort of level [£16m], perhaps for half that they’d be interested, but it could be one that’s on their radar. Probably a five or so [out of 10].”
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