Manchester United ponder third bid for Barcelona’s Cesc Fabregas
David Moyes concedes intention was to have strengthen squad by now
Manchester United’s Ryan Giggs and manager David Moyes watch Tottenham Hotspur play South China FC at the Asia Trophy tournament. Photograph: Getty Images
David Moyes says that Manchester United are “taking stock” regarding a third offer for Cesc Fabregas after Barcelona announced that the midfielder would not be sold however high the bid.
Speaking before United’s final tour game against Kitchee FC in Hong Kong, Moyes would not be drawn on whether he was discouraged by the two previous bids being rejected. “I couldn’t tell you at the moment,” he said. “I couldn’t tell if there will be another bid but obviously we’ll take stock of it and decide what we’re going to do next.”
Moyes, though, did admit it had been his aim to have strengthened the squad by now. “We hoped we would do, but what we have here is a really good squad of players,” he said. “Undoubtedly we’re hoping to add to it and we’re confident we will do before the window shuts. We’ve got until September 2nd, that’s the deadline. So I’m confident we’ll have players in. I never said at any time that we would get him [Fabregas]. We’ve made offers that have been rejected and we’ll take stock from there.”
He said that if the season started tomorrow he would be confident with the current squad. “That’s the squad that finished 15 points [actually 11] clear at the top of Premier League. Yeah I’m confident with that squad; I have a few more players I’ve not even met yet,” said the Scot.
“Unfortunately we picked up an injury to Wayne [Rooney]. But my squad without any additions will be tough opponents for any team this season. They’ll be looking at Manchester United, and we’ll be challenged by everybody every game we play.”
Moyes played down any concerns about the Hong Kong Stadium pitch after a dry day in the city following a week of almost incessant rain that threatened to ruin the Asia Trophy.
“It’s not rained and it’s been very warm so we trained this morning,” he said. “I saw the pitch in a couple of games [on Saturday]. I expect it to be drying out a bit now . . . it might become bobbly but we’ll see.”
Regarding whether he may protect any players by standing them down for Monday’s game, he said: “There are always going to be slight niggles and strains . . . The only one who is probably not going to play is Jonny Evans who has a slight ankle niggle.”
Nemanja Vidic should make his comeback from sciatica in a reserve game this evening. “Vidic will play tomorrow evening at Crewe I think. He’s coming along well. Rooney is not ready yet,” he said of the striker who has had a hamstring problem but is still expected to return on August 6th in Stockholm against AIK. Guardian Service