Friday Kickoff: Manchester United bids for Van Persie, Lucas rejected & more

Friday Kickoff: Manchester United bids for Van Persie, Lucas rejected & more

European Soccer

Friday Kickoff: Manchester United bids for Van Persie, Lucas rejected & more

RVP (Getty Images)

Robin van Persie is a wanted man among Europe's top clubs, but Arsenal is maintaining their ground before deciding to part ways with their star striker.

The Gunners have reportedly turned down a bid from Manchester United that is said to be not close to one in the £20 million range that is being sought after for the 28-year-old Dutch international. With a year remaining on his contract, Van Persie has said that he will not sign a new deal with the club. As a result, Arsenal run the risk of playing out the season while potentially losing him for nothing unless they accept an offer from one of his suitors, who are said to be United, Manchester City and Juventus.

If Van Persie, who is not accompanying Arsenal on its preseason Asian tour, were to join Manchester United, then the Red Devils would have the top two scorers from the Premier League last season. Van Persie and Wayne Rooney combined for 57 goals a year ago, with Van Persie's 30 giving him the league's golden boot.

Here are a few more stories to get your Friday going:

UNITED'S LUCAS BID TURNED DOWN

In addition to looking to sign Van Persie, Manchester United are eyeing a young playmaker to mix in with their cast of veterans, and Sao Paulo rising star Lucas Moura appears to be the apple of Sir Alex Ferguson's eye.

According to Sao Paulo, the Red Devils had a £27 million bid for the 19-year-old Brazilian rejected. Lucas is currently set for a starring role with Brazil's favored Olympic team, and Sao Paulo is holding out for more money after rating Lucas as second only to Neymar in the transfer market. The club had reportedly also turned down offers from Real Madrid and Inter Milan.

VALENCIA NEAR GAGO SIGNING

In hopes of closing the gap between themselves and giants Barcelona and Real Madrid, Valencia is nearing a signing that would improve the quality of their central midfield.

Valencia and Real Madrid reportedly have an agreement for Argentine international Fernando Gago, who spent last year on loan at AS Roma. With Madrid's glut of talent in the midfield, the 26-year-old Gago struggled to find a place in his fifth year with the club after coming over from Boca Juniors in 2007. 

The development could affect the transfer plans of American Maurice Edu, who has been linked to a move to Valencia by Scottish reports.

RODGERS WON'T LOAN CARROLL

Liverpool are not opposed to parting ways with striker Andy Carroll, but the club will not settle for a loan spell for the English international.

Manager Brendan Rodgers ruled out such a move, telling Sky Sports that, "There is talk of him going on loan, but there is absolutely no way I would be looking to loan a player like that, especially after the investment the club have paid."

Liverpool paid £35 million for Carroll, whose former club, Newcastle, has had advances for a loan back to St. James Park turned away. Whether Carroll fits into Rodgers' plans or style of play this season remains to be seen. The club signed Roma striker Fabio Borini to pair with Luis Suarez, making Carroll and odd man out up top for the Reds.

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What do you think a Rooney-Van Persie pairing would be able to accomplish? Is Arsenal's reported asking price too high for Van Persie? What about Sao Paulo's valuation of Lucas? Do you think Gago would be a wise signing for Valencia? Do you think Carroll can succeed at Liverpool under Rodgers?

Share your thoughts below.

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