Chelsea and Manchester United target Asmir Begovic could be closing in on a Stoke City exit after the club dropped a huge pre-season hint.
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According to the Daily Mail, the Potters have named the Bosnia and Herzegovina goalkeeper in their 23-man squad set to travel to Singapore for the Barclays Asia Trophy competition next week.
However – in what could be considered a significant sign at possible transfer activity in Mark Hughes’s side – the British newspaper state that Stoke have said that the club’s provisional party for the pre-season tournament is subject to change.
The Premier League champions and the Red Devils have both been heavily linked with Begovic this summer.
At the end of June, Jose Mourinho granted Petr Cech a controversial move to Arsenal [via BBC Sport], and the Portuguese manager could likely now be searching for a replacement, with the Britannia Stadium star said to be his chief target, the Daily Mail state.
The Telegraph noted that the Pensioners had already had a £6 million offer for Begovic rejected, but are planning to return to the Britannia with an £8 million approach.
What’s more, Louis van Gaal may be in the market for a new No.1 at Old Trafford with Real Madrid, according to El Confidencial, having reached an agreement with the Premier League giants over the transfer of the Spain goalkeeper.
The Metro reported yesterday that Begovic carries an £8m price-tag, and that the Blues could be leading the chase for his signature.
United may yet move for Begovic, however, with the Telegraph reporting that van Gaal is considering hijacking the Blues’ approach for the Bosnian stopper.