Diarra in Old Trafford frame
By Laurent Picard
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Manchester United have an interest in Mahamadou Diarra, says his agent.
Manchester United were interested in signing Mahamadou Diarra last summer and are likely to return with a bid this year, according to his agent Frederic Guerra.
In an exclusive interview with skysports.com, Guerra revealed that he expects the Lyon midfielder to join one of Europe's biggest clubs because he is the best player of his type on the continent.
It is believed Sir Alex Ferguson was even more impressed with Diarra's displays in the UEFA Champions League against The Red Devils than he was with Chelsea's Michael Essien, who was also a target for the Scot before heading for Stamford Bridge.
Diarra has excelled at Stade Gerland and is a key part of Gerard Houllier's side as they look to wrap up another Ligue 1 title and challenge for the Champions League.
"I think Mahamadou is the best defensive midfielder in Europe," Guerra told skysports.com. "As a consequence, he will soon play for one of the best clubs in Europe.
"We know that Chelsea are looking for a player to replace Claude Makelele, who is getting older.
"We also know that Manchester United are looking for a defensive midfielder to replace Roy Keane.
"Besides, Real Madrid haven't got a defensive midfielder. It would be logical for Mahamadou to play for one of those teams. Last summer, there has been contact with Manchester United."
The Mali international, nicknamed 'Djila', would prefer a move to The Premiership.
"The Premiership is, by far, his favourite league," continued Guerra. "I can't confirm to you that he will play there next year, but he would like to.
"He also likes the Spanish league, in second position. Then, in third position, he likes the Calcio (Serie A)."