Rumour round-up: Man Utd move for Barca star, Man City eye big money deal for Premier League defender, Italian set to replace Pardew at Palace

Roberto Mancini.Roberto Mancini.
Roberto Mancini.
Which former Manchester City manager could be set to step in, should Alan Pardew get the sack at Crystal Palace? Could Jose Mourinho raid the Nou Camp for a Croatian international? And which duo might be headed for the Etihad?

It's your daily round up of all the rumours, news and views from around the world of football.

Manchester United are keen to sign Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic (Don Balon via Daily Star).

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Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk and Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho are being eyed by Pep Guardiola as long-term replacements for Vincent Kompany and Yaya Toure at Manchester City (Daily Mail).

Meanwhile, ex-Man City boss Roberto Mancini is interested in making his Premier League return at Crystal Palace if Alan Pardew is sacked (Daily Mirror).

Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale's injury is worse than first feared - the Welshman, formerly of Tottenham Hotspur, is set for a long spell on the sidelines with an ankle injury (AS).

Southampton manager Claude Puel has described reports linking Van Dijk with Liverpool in the January transfer window as "speculation and rumour" (Talksport).

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Chelsea have shelved plans to make a move for Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly due to the Senegal international's likely involvement in the African Cup of Nations. They could revisit the £50million transfer in the summer (Sun).

Everton and West Brom will compete to sign 27-year-old Manchester United midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin for £20m in January (Daily Telegraph).

Jose Mourinho is set to spend heavily in the January transfer window and has targeted Manchester United's defence as the main area that needs strengthening (Sun).

Manchester United will have to pay Monaco an extra £8million if striker Anthony Martial scores just four more goals during his time at Old Trafford (Daily Express).

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England goalkeeper Joe Hart says he is unlikely to play for Manchester City again once his loan spell at Torino ends (Sky Sports).

Arsenal are not planning to invoke emergency rules next month to recall midfielder Jack Wilshere from his loan spell at Bournemouth, despite Santi Cazorla being ruled out for three months (Times).

Tottenham defender Toby Alderweireld is closing in on a return from injury, after taking part in two sessions with the rest of the Spurs squad this week (Evening Standard).

Gareth Southgate will get a £1.5m bonus if he can lead England to victory at the 2018 World Cup or Euro 2020 (Daily Mail).

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Watford boss Walter Mazzarri insists striker Odion Ighalo, linked with a move to Serie A in the summer, remains part of his plans despite his poor start to the season (Daily Express).

Everton are interested in signing a new goalkeeper in the January transfer window and have drawn up a three-man shortlist (Liverpool Echo).