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Is a title challenge possible for Man Utd?

Manchester United
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Zapata 'close to' Reds switch

Udinese defender Cristian Zapata has claimed that he is on the brink of completing a deal to join Liverpool

• Liverpool eyeing Gago deal
• Liverpool begin Adam talks
• Live Transfer blog

Zapata is rated as one of Serie A's best defenders and helped the Zebrette finish fourth in Italy's top-flight division, qualifying them for a spot in the play-offs of next season's Champions League.

The Colombia international is currently in South America preparing for the Copa America, but has revealed that he is in talks about leaving his current club for a switch to Anfield.

"I do not know what to say, I can say that I am very close to Liverpool," he told La FM. "At the end of the Copa America, we will see what happens with my future."

"I have gained experience, but the time has come for me to make the jump to a big team."

Zapata, who has been with Udinese for six years since his arrival from Deportivo Cali back in 2005, currently has two years left on his contract at the Stadio Friuli.

The versatile 24-year-old, who can play at centre back or full back, has claimed that Bayern Munich have also made a move for his signature, but a move to Merseyside now appears imminent.

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