Man United prepare second Vermaelen bid as Ospina signing edges closer


Manchester United are expected to make a second bid for Thomas Vermaelen next week after Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger admitted that the Belgian could leave the club this summer.

The 28-year-old has only a year remaining on his contract and is no longer an automatic first choice at Emirates Stadium with Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny ahead of him.

Wenger is likely to sanction a deal if United come back with an second offer in excess of £10m – which was in the region of what he paid for the former Ajax man almost six years ago.

Arsenal rejected United’s opening bid of £6m but the Louis van Gaal’s side are confident their planned new offer will succeed.

Semi Ajayi, Isaac Hayden, Julio Pleguezuelo and Ignasi Miquel remain Arsenal’s other up-and-coming centre-back options, although all of them are under the age of 21.

However, it is expected that Wenger will delve into the transfer market to bolster the Gunners’ defence with Sporting Lisbon starlet William Carvalho likely to be at the top of the Frenchman’s wanted list.

If Vermaelen does leave then it’s expected that either Per Mertesacker or vice-skipper Mikel Arteta will be made club captain for the new season.


Meanwhile, Arsenal are hopeful of wrapping up a deal for Colombia goalkeeper David Ospina within the next week.

Signing back-up for current No.1 Wojciech Szczesny is a top priority for Gunners boss Arsene Wenger after the departure of Lukasz Fabianski and Emiliano Viviano this summer.

Ospina, whose contract expires at Nice next summer, has agreed personal terms with Arsenal while both sides have also reportedly agreed on a fee which is expected to be around £3million.

Former Atlético Nacional shot stopper Ospina, renowned for his phenomenal reflexes and athleticism, will compete with Szczesny for the no.1 spot at Arsenal when he arrives at the club.

He made 29 league appearances last season and his efforts helped Nice avoid relegation on the final day of last season.

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