Giggs reveals he advised Man United to buy Jesus and Mbappe

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Ryan Giggs says he advised Manchester United to sign Gabriel Jesus and Kylian Mbappe before the pair rose to prominence.

Former United winger Giggs joined the club’s backroom staff when his stellar playing career drew to a close, serving as Louis van Gaal’s assistant after spending a year as player-coach under David Moyes.

And Giggs, who watched Brazilian striker Jesus and France forward Mbappe with a scout during that time, believes the club’s recruitment “could have been better”.

He told the Times: “I watched Gabriel Jesus play three years ago. I watched Mbappe for a year.

“I was watching them with the scout and it was a no-brainer. It was just like, ‘Get them’.

“It would have been £5million or something – get them, loan them back – and that’s where the recruitment could have been better.”

Kylian Mbappe 3

Jesus joined Manchester City for a reported £27million in January while Mbappe swapped Monaco for Paris St Germain this summer, initially on loan but with an option to make the move permanent next summer for a fee of around £166million.

Giggs also thinks some of the players the Red Devils let go should never have been allowed to leave the club.
He added: “I know what a Manchester United player looks like.

“There have been a lot who have come through that haven’t been United players and also players who were United and shouldn’t have left.

“I’m talking about Rafael (Da Silva), (Danny) Welbeck, Jonny Evans – players who are United through and through.

“It was hard because Louis had his own ideas and you had to respect that but, yes, we had a few arguments about a couple of them.”

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Man United target Pulisic, Liverpool track Akanji

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WHAT THE PAPERS SAY

Manchester United are keen on USA winger Christian Pulisic, the Daily Mail reports. The 19-year-old Borussia Dortmund player has caught the eye of Jose Mourinho in recent months with the manager keen on bringing in a winger and playmaker.

Newly-appointed Everton boss Sam Allardyce is looking at making James Tomkins his first signing, according to the Sun. The 28-year-old centre-back was sold by West Ham to Crystal Palace last July, but Allardyce is looking to spend up to £20million to bring him to Goodison Park the paper reports.

Takeover talks at Newcastle may scupper any deal to bring Leicester’s Islam Slimani to St James’ Park, the Leicester Mercury says. Rafael Benitez wants to bring in the striker, but could face competition from Watford, West Brom and Stoke the paper reports.

Basel defender Manuel Akanji is subject to interest from both Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund, according to the Independent. The German side are pushing hard for a deal to be done in January, but the Swiss club want to keep the 22-year-old for the rest of the campaign, the paper said.

Manuel Akanji

Manuel Akanji

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Jose Arnaiz: Arsenal could make a £17.7m move for the 22-year-old Barcelona winger, according to Marca.

Leonardo Bonucci: Manchester City are keeping an eye on the AC Milan man following rumours the 30-year-old is unhappy at the club, Gazzetta dello Sport said.

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Man City to sign Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal but will wait until the summer

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Manchester City are unlikely to sign Arsenal‘s Alexis Sanchez in January, Press Association Sport understands.

The Premier League leaders are now happy to wait until next summer for their long-term target after making such a superb start to the season.

City realise Sanchez, who is in the final year of his Gunners contract, could sign a pre-contract agreement elsewhere from January but that is unlikely to influence their thinking.

The club do not feel it makes a lot of sense to sign the Chilean mid-season and potentially risk disrupting the attacking balance of a squad that has swept almost all before them this term.

The 29-year-old has also been linked with Paris St Germain but, while an offer has not been completely ruled out in certain circumstances, City will not be hurried by the transfer policies of other clubs.

City had a bid worth up to £60million for Sanchez accepted on deadline day in August but a deal could not be finalised as Arsenal were unable to secure a replacement.

Any disappointment felt over that, however, has hardly shown up as a shortcoming in City’s squad. City are unbeaten and lead the Premier League by 11 points after winning their last 16 games. They are also through to the last 16 of the Champions League and the Carabao Cup semi-finals.

City’s feelings on the Sanchez situation are connected to a general reluctance to do business during the January transfer window unless there is a clear necessity to strengthen a certain position.

One such exception could be at centre-back, where City have appeared short of options of late with John Stones and Vincent Kompany both suffering injuries.

City could revive attempts to sign Jonny Evans from West Brom but it is understood other options will be explored, possibly including Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk. City will work to a plan of at least 18 months with all signings and not bring in players to fill gaps short-term.

If another defender is not recruited, a centre-back will be a priority in the summer along with extra defensive central midfield cover.

Contract talks with Fernandinho, who is in the final year of his current deal, are likely but Yaya Toure could leave when he becomes a free agent in the summer.

City are no longer thought to be interested in signing another left-back. Manager Pep Guardiola looked light in the position after Benjamin Mendy suffered a long-term knee injury in September but Fabian Delph has proved an adequate replacement. There is also further back-up in Danilo and Oleksandr Zinchenko.

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