Man Utd close in on Baines as Everton line up Ziegler as replacement

Leighton Baines

Manchester United are close to finalising a £16 million deal for Leighton Baines according to the Daily Star after Everton identified Juventus left back Reto Ziegler as his replacement.

The England international has been linked with a move to Old Trafford for much of the summer and could be a United player by the end of the week should negotiations go to plan.

Sir Alex Ferguson sees the 27-year-old as the natural successor to Patrice Evra and is hoping to have him on board before the club embarks on it’s tour of South Africa and China on July 16.

It’s understood the Red Devils will pay an initial £12m for Baines with the extra £4m coming in the form of future add-ons and will become Ferguson’s third pre-season signing after Shinji Kagawa and Nick Powell.

Despite being reluctant to sell his star defender Toffees manager David Moyes knows he is unable to reject a lucrative offer for any of his players having worked on a shoestring budget during his decade at Goodison Park.

Moyes will now use the money to pursue Switzerland international Ziegler who spent three years in the Premier League with Tottenham Hotspur between 2004 and 2007.

The 26-year-old has been frozen out in Turin after signing from Sampdoria last year and was surprisingly sent to spend the previous campaign on loan at Turkish side Fenerbache.

He has yet to appear for the Old Lady and was told he does not figure in manager Antonio Conte’s plans after returning to Italy alerting Moyes to his availability.

The Serie A champions value Ziegler at around £5m but Everton value him at £2m but could raise the stakes should Bained complete his move to United.

Former loan club Wigan are also interested whilst Stuttgart and Lazio are also said to be tracking the versatile left back, who can also play on the wing or in central midfield

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