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The highly-rated 21-year-old full-back has told team-mates that a move to Old Trafford is likely after his contract at Selhurst Park expires this summer

THE
SWEEPER
TIDYING UP ALL THE LOOSE STORIES IN FOOTBALL THIS WEEK


CLYNE HAS HEART SET ON MANCHESTER UNITED MOVE

Crystal Palace starlet Nathaniel Clyne is attracting interest from a host of Premier League clubs but the defender has his heart set on a summer move to Manchester United, The Sweeper can reveal.

The 21-year-old is out of contract in June and will be available to talk to other clubs, with Manchester City, Newcastle, Fulham and Reading all show an interest in the highly rated full-back.

But Clyne is a long-term target for United boss Sir Alex Ferguson and has told team-mates that he is “very likely” to be playing at Old Trafford next season.

United tried to sign the England Under-21 international in January but decided to bide their time. He would be considered as a versatile squad player and a like for like replacement for Fabio, who Ferguson has revealed will spend next season out on loan.

Palace have not given up hope of keeping Clyne at Selhurst Park and have prepared a five-year contract, but the youngster wants to play in the Premier League and feels a move to a top flight club will be too hard to resist.

Clyne has already made 136 appearances for Palace since making his debut in 2008 and can play at left-back as well as his preferred role on the right side of defence.

Even if United secure a deal for Clyne, they are still monitoring a number of proven left-backs - including Valencia’s Jordi Alba and Leighton Baines of Everton - as they consider long-term replacements for Patrice Evra.

- Greg Stobart | Northern Correspondent

RANGER HOPING TO LEAVE NEWCASTLE


Nile Ranger is hoping a Championship club can match Newcastle United’s £500,000 valuation of their striker to kick-start his career away from the Sports Direct Arena.

The 21-year-old’s goal sealed Sheffield Wednesday’s promotion to the Championship last weekend as he completed a loan spell at Hillsborough in style and now he is hoping to build on that success away from Tyneside.

Despite signing a five-and-a-half year contract in December 2010, Ranger has reluctantly accepted that his time at Newcastle has come to an end following the arrival of the likes of Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse.

He is now desperate to play regular first-team football which means a Championship club is his most likely destination with Wednesday and Barnsley keen.

Birmingham City manager Chris Hughton is a big admirer of Ranger and he could even take the former Southampton trainee to West Bromwich Albion if he heads to the Hawthorns this summer to take over from Roy Hodgson.

- Rob Stewart | Correspondent

FORMER CITY CHIEF TO ATTEND TITLE DECIDER

There will be plenty of backslapping in some of the corridors of power at Premier League clubs on Sunday - and some former members of staff will be around to make sure they get their fair of the credit.

The Sweeper can confirm that former chief executive Garry Cook has been invited to Manchester City’s clash against QPR as they look to wrap up the title; while Damien Comolli will be at White Hart Lane to watch a number of players he bought for Tottenham attempt to secure Champions League qualification.

- Greg Stobart | Northern Correspondent

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