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Transfer Rater: Ross Barkley to Man United


West Brom close to Diego Lugano deal

West Bromwich Albion are close to finalising the signing of Uruguayan captain Diego Lugano.

Diego Lugano: Struggling for semi
Diego Lugano has made 85 appearances for Uruguay.

• Lugano back in PSG fold

Instone: Stern test

The Paris Saint-Germain central defender is thought to be in the West Midlands and the club hope to make an announcement in the next 24 hours.

Whether the 32-year-old could play in Thursday night's friendly against Genoa at Telford will depend on international clearance coming through in time.

Lugano is out of contract next summer in the French capital and spent much of last season on loan at Malaga - a factor that could see him available for as little as £1 million.

Head coach Steve Clarke has been seeking defensive cover, with only Gabriel Tamas and Premier League rookie Craig Dawson present at The Hawthorns as back-up to the experienced pairing of Gareth McAuley and Jonas Olsson.

Albion failed earlier this week with a loan bid for Federico Fernandez, who they were told they could have from Napoli only in a costly permanent deal.

Lugano Lugano has won 85 caps for Uruguay and captained them to victory at the 2011 Copa America.

Albion have already raided South America successfully, homing in last summer for Argentine midfielder Claudio Jacob.

Clarke is on record as saying he wants a further four players before the transfer window shuts on September 2.

His only new face so far is the much-travelled Nicolas Anelka, although the club have also negotiated a deal to bring Macedonian left-back Goran Popov back for a second year on-loan.


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