Moyes coy over Thiago links
There are still five weeks to go before the start of the 2013/14
Bundesliga season, but Hamburg’s director of sport Oliver Kreuzer
has already lost his patience with his team.
Speaking after Hamburg lost 2-0 to Wacker Innsbruck in a
pre-season friendly, Kreuzer warned his players to pull their socks
up, otherwise they risk another uphill start to the season after
making one of their worst starts on record last year.
“You can’t just think that we’re coming to Austria for a short
break and having a light workout against an Austrian first division
side,” he said.
“As a Bundesliga side, it’s not on to present yourselves like
this. I hope this was the last time.”
Anybody who does repeat such a lackadaisical performance my find
themselves on the transfer list, according to Kreuzer, who is
looking for excuses to lower the wage bill.
“Our priority is to reduce the size of our squad,” he added on
Rumours that Thiago has opted to quit the Nou Camp in favour of
a Â£17million move to Old Trafford in order to maximise
his chances of making Spain’s World Cup squad next summer have
circulated for some time now.
However, so far, the transfer has not been concluded and Moyes
opted not to offer any specific updates when he met the media for
the first time.
Reports have emerged in Spain, though, that representatives of
both clubs will meet next week to finalise the transfer.
Thiago is available at a cut-price Â£17million as he
did not feature in the number of first-team games stated in his
Barca contract and it is claimed will sign a five-year deal to
become Moyes’ first significant capture since replacing Sir Alex
“Manchester United will always be close to the best players,”
Moyes told MUTV.
“I will inform the supporters as much as I can.
“Some things are confidential but I am doing everything I
possibly can to strengthen the current English champions.”
The deal could be rushed through in time to make Thiago
available for the start of United’s pre-season tour on
However, given the highly-rated player’s successful run to the
European Under-21 Championship final with eventual winners Spain,
he may not be called up for the first part of the three week
expedition to the Far East and Australia anyway.
It does appear Wayne Rooney will be involved though, with club
sources last night reinforcing Moyes’ public statement of the
27-year-old not being for sale.
However, with Ashley Young, Chris Smalling and Nani all doubts
for the first game against Singha All Stars in Bangkok next
weekend, Moyes has confirmed the tour may provide an opportunity
for a couple of youngsters.
Eighteen-year-old midfielder Adnan Januzaj seems the most likely
inclusion, having made the bench for last season’s final game, the
epic 5-5 draw at West Brom, although goalkeeper Sam Johnstone, Tom
Thorpe and Larnell Cole were all part of the England Under-20 squad
for the recent World Cup tournament in Turkey.
In addition, defender Michael Keane has been capped by England
at Under-21 level, although twin brother Will missed all last
season with a serious knee injury.
“I don’t know if it is useful to be away for three weeks but it
is useful in terms of getting to know the players,” said Moyes of
the tour, which features visits to Sydney, Japan and Hong Kong in
addition to the opener in Thailand.
“They will get to know me and how I work, which is
“There are also two or three young players I might get a chance
to look at.
“I am looking for (reserve team coach) Warren (Joyce) to give me
direction on that and who should be pushed towards the first
“Maybe in some of the games I will have the opportunity to