Manchester City director of football Txiki Begiristain has opened talks for the summer transfer of Adam Maher, according to Goal.com. The 19-year-old Dutch-Moroccan midfielder plays for Eredivisie side AZ Alkmaar and has also been targeted by Arsenal, Chelsea and Dutch giants Ajax Amsterdam and PSV Eindhoven.
Unfortunately for the Gunners, Maher has been quoted as saying he has no interest in playing for the north London club and would prefer to remain in Holland for a few more years.
If he does move, it is understood that Maher will be a replacement for French international Samir Nasri. The ex-Arsenal man transferred to the Etihad in 2011 but has failed to establish himself as a first team regular under Roberto Mancini.
Speculation suggests the Premier League champions will be happy to offload the 25-year-old if they receive a fee of around £18m. Ligue 1 giants Paris St Germain (PSG) are believed to be interested, with ex-Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti an admirer of Nasri's talents.
Maher is contracted to Alkmaar until 2015, a contract (with a significant pay raise) he signed in October. Potential suitors have already been warned they must pay at least £8m to get their man but this is unlikely to be an obstacle to the English champions or, indeed, even Ajax or PSV.
Carlos Tevez Arrested but Will Play Barnsley
Meanwhile, City striker Carlos Tevez has been arrested for allegedly driving while disqualified. The Argentine international was charged at Macclesfield police station on Thursday evening but has since been released on bail.
The 29-year-old, who has nine goals and seven assists from 24 Premier League games this season, was originally banned from driving for six months after an earlier speeding offence and compounded the problem by refusing to cooperate with an investigation.
Should Tevez be found guilty, he faces a possible prison sentence of six months or a maximum fine of £5,000.
However, despite the legal problems, the striker is expected to be available for selection when Championship side Barnsley visit the Etihad in the FA Cup on Saturday 9 March.