Tue, Aug 02, 2011 - Page 18 News List

Sneijder keeps door open to United deal

AFP, DUBLIN

Wesley Sneijder on Sunday kept the door open to a possible £35 million (US$58 million) switch to Manchester United.

The Inter midfielder has been strongly linked with a move to the Premier League champions and speculation continued at the weekend, despite recent comments from United boss Sir Alex Ferguson that the club would make no further signings this summer.

The Dutch international played 75 minutes in Sunday’s 3-0 defeat to Manchester City in the Dublin Super Cup and then refused to dismiss the speculation that he may end up on the other side of Manchester this season.

“There is always a chance something will happen, but we will see,” the former Real Madrid star said. “What is going to happen we will see, but I am a happy guy. There is always speculation, every year. I have been at the highest level for 10 years and there is always speculation, but look, I am still here. I am happy to train every day with my colleagues, and play my games for the fans and every one at the club, and whatever happens after that, we will see.”

Inter boss Gian Piero Gasperini has told United they must speak with his club, and not the player, if they want to conclude a deal. Gasperini was reacting to comments, attributed to Ferguson, but later denied by the Scot, that the midfielder was made one, final, take-it-or-leave-it offer by United.

“I appreciate there’s been an offer, but it’s with Inter the negotiations should take place,” Gasperini said. “I’m not necessarily worried, it’s normal in this time to have this type of situation.”

Roberto Mancini refused to be left out of the transfer speculation game at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium when he admitted that he expects a number of players to leave Manchester City in the coming weeks. Craig Bellamy will be allowed to join fellow Super Cup competitors Celtic, if the player can agree a deal, while Emmanuel Adebayor will be free to join Real Madrid, should Jose Mourinho want the Togo striker to return to the Bernabeu.

Unsettled striker Carlos Tevez is free to depart — if a £50 million fee is forthcoming, but if not, the Argentine will be a welcome member of Mancini’s potent forward options, alongside Mario Balotelli, Edin Dzeko and new signing Sergio Aguero.

“If Carlos stays, and we have four strikers fighting for the team, it is good, but we will play four competitions this year, we need four strikers. Mario Balotelli played well and I think if he plays with the same concentration he did today, then we will be happy,” Mancini said.

“With Dzeko, it was tough for him last season because it was his first time in the Premier League and the first two or three months are very, very difficult, but I am confident he will score lots of goals for us this season,” he said.

Celtic boss Neil Lennon was content following his side’s 5-0 victory over an Airtricity League XI, but the best business of the weekend could be the addition of City striker Bellamy.

“I didn’t speak with City, but the two clubs have been working on that in the background,” Lennon said. “Hopefully, there will be more to report at the end of the week.”

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