English clubs chase Nancy's Haidara
A quintet of English clubs are chasing promising Nancy left-back Massadio Haidara, with the French club saying that a move for the youngster is imminent.
Haidara, 20, has been a rare bright spot in a desperately disappointing first half of the season for Jean Fernandez's men.
Nancy will restart their top-flight campaign at the bottom of the table, eight points adrift of safety, at home to Lille on 12 January - but Haidara, who made his top-flight debut for the club shortly after turning 18, is likely to be gone by then.
"Our player with the highest market value is Massadio Haidara. He's been playing in Ligue 1 for the last two years. The English clubs like him a lot," Nicolas Holveck, the Nancy vice-president, told radio station RMC.
"We're in contact with five English clubs in the top half of the table. We think things should firm up quickly."
With the Lorraine club in need of revenue, Haidara is unlikely to be the only departure from the Stade Marcel Picot.
While discussions continue with potential investors - "an American, a Luxembourgeois, and an Argentine investment fund" according to president Jacques Rousselot - the squad will also be stripped of more of its assets.
"We've decided to let four or five players go, which should permit us to balance our books," Rousselot told the press, also confirming that coach Fernandez would remain at the helm to try and help guide the team out of danger.
"There's still a glimmer of hope, and we have to hang on to that,” he added. “Seven wins and two draws could be enough. Of course, we know that we set off with a big handicap, but we have to try. If we're going down, we'll go down fighting."
He added that the club would also recruit "cunningly, with players in difficulty in Germany, England, Spain, Italy and even in France”.