Moyes will sell sullen Lescott to City for £30m

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FOOTBALL - By JOHN ED­WARDS

EVER­TON will de­mand £30 mil­lion from Manch­ester City for Joleon Lescott af­ter David Moyes fi­nally lost pa­tience this week and or­dered the de­fender to train by him­self.

City will con­tact Good­i­son Park bosses with an im­proved of­fer of £22m af­ter fail­ing with re­cent bids of £15m and £18m, but will be told to go even higher to end the saga over Ever­ton's dis­grun­tled cen­tre half.

It will be a test of City's ap­par­ent will­ing­ness to pay what­ever is re­quired to land their main tar­gets.

But they are ex­pected to reach a com­pro­mise, nearer Ever­ton's val­u­a­tion than theirs, to part­ner Lescott with Kolo Toure at the heart of their de­fence.

Moyes fi­nally snapped over the stance adopted by his £5m sign­ing from Wolves and ad­mit­ted his sullen mood was hav­ing a neg­a­tive ef­fect on the rest of the squad.

Dis­mayed by the lack of fight in an open­ing 6-1 home hu­mil­i­a­tion by Arse­nal – and Lescott's sub­se­quent de­meanour in train­ing – he in­formed the 27-year-old he would not be in the Ever­ton squad for their Europa League qual­i­fier against Sigma Olo­mouc (won 4-0 by Moyes’ team) on Thurs­day – and or­dered him to train alone.

Moyes in­sisted he was more de­ter­mined than ever to keep Lescott at Ever­ton. But, as he pur­sues a list of tar­gets headed by Mid­dles­brough's David Wheater and City's Richard Dunne, who could be in­cluded in a part-ex­change deal, it seems cer­tain he will re­lent if City come close to Ever­ton's ask­ing price.

Moyes, who is also clos­ing in on Rus­sia winger Vladimir Bys­trov, spoke this week about how even Lescott's team­mates have be­come dis­il­lu­sioned by his lack of com­mit­ment.

“His at­ti­tude has been poor postArse­nal,” said Moyes. “I have made a de­ci­sion now and though we have al­ways thought of him as a good boy, things have hap­pened that have changed him.

“It has not been one thing, it is just gen­er­ally. Nor­mally he is a very good trainer and very fo­cused but he doesn't seem to be that at this present time. It doesn't mean the end of his Ever­ton ca­reer. He might be in the first-team squad for this week­end if I see there is a change in his at­ti­tude. His re­ac­tion to be­ing left out was just a nor mal foot­ball re­ac­tion.

“Joleon has told me he would rather move, I have cho­sen to ig­nore it and not go with it. We have not had a sig­nif­i­cant enough of­fer for us to sell and that re­mains the case. I have never wanted to sell him but as I said be­fore Ron­aldo was sold by Manch­ester United, there will al­ways be a price for a player. But Manch­ester City have not come close to meet­ing ours for Joleon Lescott.

“Per­son­ally, the big­gest dis­ap­point­ment is that the peo­ple who have been ad­vis­ing him are giv­ing him poor in­for ma­tion and have turned a good lad into some­thing else,” Moyes added. “I can see by the re­ac­tion of his team­mates that they are dis­ap­pointed in him as well.

'But it is not in­evitable that he is leav­ing now. All I have done is make a de­ci­sion for this game that may or may not be the right de­ci­sion but the per­for­mance against Arse­nal made me re­alise that I had to do some­thing. I couldn't let it drift.”– Daily Mail

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