A deal to take Sporting Gijon defender Alberto Botia to Sevilla is almost complete, according to AS.
Sevilla boss Michel has already started the process of reshaping his defence before the start of next season and sees Botia as the final piece in the jigsaw.
The 23-year-old has just returned from Spain’s disappointing showing at the London Olympics and it is understood he will not be returning to Sporting next Thursday as planned.
The Asturians suffered relegation from La Primera last term and his agents Juanma Lopez and Gelu Rodriguez are keen for Botia to continue playing top-flight football, with Atletico Madrid and Benfica also having shown interest.
However, Sporting are believed to have accepted Sevilla’s €3m offer after Barcelona rejected the option to buy the player back following his move to El Molinon in July 2010, despite him being a product of Barca’s famed La Masia academy.
Los Nervionenses have just signed Brazilian right-back Cicinho from Palmeiras, yet Julien Escude’s departure to Besiktas has left a gap in central defence that Michel is anxious to fill.
Some unacceptable pre-season displays have led to criticism from fans and Michel wants to shore up his back line as soon as possible with the new season fast approaching.
Meanwhile, Sevilla are also interested in former Real Mallorca midfielder Fernando Tissone, currently with Sampdoria, who is seen as cover for Hedwiges Maduro after the Dutch international was recently discovered to have heart problems.