BEIRUT

Football

Kaka’s Madrid career on borrowed time, Agger close to signing new deal

There are concerns about Kaka’s fitness after he suffered from various injuries.

Beirut: Kaka has been offered to Manchester United on a season-long loan, according to The Daily Mail, as Real Madrid prepare for the arrival of Luka Modric. Galatasaray and Kaka’s former club AC Milan have also registered their interest in the 2007 World Player of the Year, but United are the biggest draw for the Brazilian.

Sir Alex Ferguson is giving the 30-year-old serious consideration but has fears about his form and fitness after so many injuries.

Kaka was an unused substitute Sunday night as Real tied 1-1 with Valencia in their opening game. He has also lost his place in the Brazil squad.

Xabi Alonso, Lassana Diarra, Angel de Maria and Mesut Ozil all started. Germany midfielder Sami Khedira, who was also on the bench, is further competition and the 30-million-pound ($47-million) arrival of Modric from Spurs will push Kaka even further down the queue.

The Brazilian’s salary is close to the 250,000 pounds a week earned by Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney, and although Real are reluctant to let Kaka join a Champions League rival, his wages are a burden, considering he will spend most of the season on the bench at the Bernabeu.

United added to their recent acquisition of van Persie with the signing of leftback Alexander Buttner, 23, for 3.9 million pounds from Vitesse Arnhem. Buttner, who will act as an understudy to first choice Patrice Evra, was overjoyed with his move to Old Trafford.

“If you had told me one week ago that I would be training with and playing for the same team as Robin van Persie, I would have sent you to a mental home.

“This is crazy stuff, beyond all my dreams. I am looking forward to this challenge so much. I am so proud and so glad that it has worked out like this.

“I’m so glad that it has happened and everything has turned out like this. This is really a dream come true.”

Meanwhile, The Daily Mirror is reporting that Daniel Agger is ready to sign a lucrative new deal with Liverpool and snub Manchester City, despite his red card shocker against West Brom.

Danish defender Agger is “desperately close” to agreeing new terms with the Reds after weeks of speculation about his future at Anfield.

The good news comes on the back of Agger’s defensive partner Martin Skrtel, who signed a new four-year deal of his own Sunday.

Agger will be given a new deal in the region of 80,000 pounds a week, just when City were preparing a 25-million-pound offer for the player, with Barcelona also taking an interest.

And Liverpool badly want Agger to put pen to paper to give Brendan Rodgers a boost after their opening defeat at West Brom, where the center-half’s dismissal cost them dearly.

Rodgers could have done with the money from the sale, to re-invest in two or three new faces, but Agger has been one of the team’s better performers.

Meanwhile, Arsene Wenger has agreed a deal to sign Real Madrid starlet Nuri Sahin, The Daily Mirror claims. The Arsenal boss has held talks with Sahin and persuaded him to join on a one-year loan deal.

Sahin, 23, wants to join Arsenal for the Champions League, even though Liverpool presented a better offer to Real Madrid. The club offered to pay a higher proportion of his wages to Real but Sahin prefers Arsenal.

Sahin will come to Arsenal after a frustrating spell at Real Madrid, with Wenger reportedly paying a 2-million-pound loan fee. There is no permanent deal agreed.

Sahin took German football by storm but has struggled to establish himself at Real Madrid. Still, Wenger has had his eye on the Turkish midfielder for a while.

He is a different player to Alex Song, more technical and creative than defensive, but will help soften the blow of Song’s 15-million-pound sale to Barcelona.

According to The Daily Mail, AC Milan are prepared to offer Arsenal’s Philippe Mexes in a deal to land wantaway striker Nicklas Bendtner.

The Denmark international is desperate to move away from the Gunners after being shipped out on loan to Sunderland last season and the Italian giants are ready to make their move.

The major stumbling block could be the France player’s 80,000-pound-a-week wages, but Milan may give him a payoff to push through the deal.

The Dane is almost certain to end his association with the Gunners this summer, having fallen way down the pecking order after a series of underwhelming campaigns.

Bendtner says talks continue with a raft of clubs across the continent, and he is confident he will get the right offer before the transfer window shuts at the end of the month.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on August 21, 2012, on page 14.

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