Wednesday Kickoff: Man City interested in Falcao; Knee issue holding up Vidal transfer; and more

Wednesday Kickoff: Man City interested in Falcao; Knee issue holding up Vidal transfer; and more

South American Soccer

Wednesday Kickoff: Man City interested in Falcao; Knee issue holding up Vidal transfer; and more

RadamelFalcaoASMonaco1-ValenciaEmiratesCup (Getty)

By DAN KARELL

It might be a long shot, but Manchester City are beginning to put together a plan to sign AS Monaco star Radamel Falcao.

The Colombian forward celebrated his return from a torn anterior cruciate ligament last January with a goal last Sunday against Arsenal at the Emirates Cup. Falcao’s club manager Leonardo Jardim said following the game that Falcao is “untransferable,” but according to a report in Gazetta Dello Sport, Man City are considering offloading Stevan Jovetic in order to raise enough funds to sign Falcao on a transfer or even a cost-saving loan.

Falcao is wanted by Man City as an improvement over Alvaro Negredo, who struggled in the second half of last season, and Sergio Aguero, who was not at full fitness at the World Cup. It will be tough for Man City to realistically sign Falcao though with interest from Real Madrid forcing the price to rise for any potential transfer as well as Monaco’s unwillingness to sell.

If Jovetic does leave Man City, Juventus looks like his most likely destination.

Here are some more stories to kick off your Wednesday:

VIDAL TRANSFER DELAYED DUE TO KNEE WORRIES

Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal has yet to sign off on a reported transfer for Arturo Vidal due to worries over the player’s knees, according to Chile manager Jorge Sampaoli.

The Chilean boss claimed in an interview with Chilean newspaper El Mercurial that fears over the health of Vidal’s injured knee have held up a potential $80 million transfer from Juventus to Man United. Sampaoli even claimed that Vidal was only at “30 or 40 percent” during the World Cup due to the ongoing knee issues.

Vidal arrived at preseason training with Juventus last week in Jakarta, Indonesia after a FIFA-mandated post-World Cup break. According to reports in Italy, no official offer from Man United has been made but informal discussions with Vidal’s agent have occured and he’s likely to be offered a five-year contract worth £200,000 per week when he can prove his fitness.

Vidal underwent knee surgery last May but was rushed back to be fit in time for the World Cup.

SAMPAOLI EXTENDS THROUGH 2018 WORLD CUP

One of the most exciting young coaches in world soccer is staying at his post for the long term.

After initially considering leaving his job as manager of the Chilean National Team, Jorge Sampaoli has agreed on a contract extension through the 2018 World Cup, which includes the 2015 Copa America hosted by Chile and the 2016 Copa America Centenario hosted by the USA.

Sampaoli, an Argentine who falls under the coaching family tree of legendary Argentine coach Marcelo Bielsa, lead Chile to an impressive place in the World Cup round of 16, nearly advancing to the quarterfinals at the expense of Brazil. Chile memorably defeated Spain and Australia in the group stage but came up just short of beating the Netherlands in their final match.

QUICK KICKS

Bayern Munich have agreed personal terms with Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina and will confirm the transfer when he completes his medical and signs his new contract. (REPORT)

AC Milan are interested in signing Real Madrid goalkeeper Diego Lopez on loan. (REPORT)

Stuttgart forward Vedad Ibisevic has signed a contract extension with the club through 2017. (REPORT)

Brazilian club Santos have signed Robinho, who came up through their youth academy, on a year-long loan, though AC Milan still have the right to sell Robinho in January. (REPORT)

Liverpool have completed the loan signing of Atletico Madrid right back Javi Manquillo. (REPORT)

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What do you think of these reports? Do you see Man City being able to sign Falcao? Do you think he’d succeed in the EPL? Do you expect to see Vidal move to Old Trafford at some point?

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