• Premier League

Premier League chase for Valenciennes defender hots up

ESPN staff
January 31, 2013
Nicolas Isimat-Mirin will be a Valenciennes player until June © Getty Images

Valenciennes are in talks with a trio of Premier League clubs over a move for highly-rated centre-back Nicolas Isimat-Mirin.

Fulham and West Ham United are joined, inevitably, by Newcastle United in pursuing the €2.5 million-rated Isimat-Mirin, 21, who is under contract with the Ligue 1 side until 2015.

"At the moment, we're talking to Fulham, West Ham and Newcastle," Valenciennes president Jean-Raymond Legrand told RMC radio, adding that the player would not leave northern France immediately. "We've made it a condition that we get to keep the player until June."

Having sold unsettled Brazilian centre-half Gil this January, Isimat-Mirin is only one of three recognised central defenders in Daniel Sanchez's squad.

Valenciennes' neighbours and Ligue 1 rivals Lille had also held talks over a potential move for the player, who made his French top-flight debut in 2010, before negotiations reached a dead-end.

"Nicolas won't sign for Lille in January," Legrand confirmed. "We didn't reach an agreement with Lille, so he won't be going there."

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