6 August 2012 04:24
Former Manchester City midfielder Patrick Vieira has confirmed the club’s interest in Arsenal hitman Robin Van Persie.
Vieira, who holds the position of football development executive at Premier League champions City, said Van Persie’s contractual situation has caught the attention of Europe’s biggest clubs.
“When there’s a player like Van Persie, with only one year of contract, all the big clubs try to buy him,” the Frenchman said.
“Juventus, Manchester United and even City because (City manager Roberto) Mancini likes him so much.
“Currently, though, Van Persie is an Arsenal player.”
Meanwhile, Mancini has cooled rumors that have linked City players Edin Dzeko, Carlos Tevez and Aleksandar Kolarov to the Serie A.
“I don’t know if Italian teams could buy Dzeko, Tevez or Kolarov. It depends of what our club want to do,” he said.
“What I know is these three players are pivotal for us, they are happy here and we don’t want them to go. Manchester City are playing to win all the trophies and need a strong team.
Mancini has not signed any new players in the off-season, while city rivals United have spent 18 million pounds on new blood.
And the Italian believes United will still be the team to beat next season, even with City being the defending champions.
“We are a work in progress as all the other teams at this moment are, even though we start the season earlier, still we have some players in Manchester,” he said.
“We are not the team to beat. Manchester United are.”
City continued their build-up to the new season with a 2-0 friendly victory at Bundesliga outfit Wolfsburg on Saturday, followed by a comfortable 4-0 over Irish side Limerick on Sunday.