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 Posted by Dermot Corrigan
Aug 5, 2013

Atletico leading Etienne Capoue race

Atletico Madrid are in pole position to sign Toulouse midfielder Etienne Capoue, with the Ligue 1 side’s coach Alain Casanova admitting that the France international will move if someone matches his club’s valuation of the player.

Etienne Capoue has been strongly linked with a Toulouse exit
Capoue had been linked with Cardiff.

Atletico coach Diego Simeone is thought to be keen to reinforce in deep midfield, and has upped his interest in the tough tackling Capoue, 25, after initial target Jeremy Toulalan chose to join big spending Ligue 1 side Monaco.

Premier League new boys Cardiff had previously considered a €10 million bid for Capoue, however the Welsh club have reportedly turned their sights to Queens Park Rangers’ Stephane M’Bia, leaving the path clear for Atletico to make their move.

According to AS, Atletico are willing to pay around €7 million, with Casanova maintaining that a move could happen, but perhaps not at that figure.

"He has permission to leave, but an offer is missing which would meet what the president is expecting,” the coach said.

Meanwhile, Atletico have been included in an audacious three-way move by Catalan daily Sport on Monday.

The reported operation would see the Colchoneros centre-forward Diego Costa join Liverpool, giving the Liga club the €25 million needed to sign Santi Cazorla from Arsenal, with the Gunners then using that cash to complete the triangle by upping their bid to successfully secure Luis Suarez's exit from the Anfield club.

Simeone did not talk about transfers after his side’s 2-0 friendly win over Uruguayan side Nacional on Sunday night. Costa was withdrawn after a subdued display, with second-half replacement Leo Baptista grabbing both goals in the game played at Montevideo's historic El Centenario stadium.

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