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Carlos Alcaraz: Brentford mull January move for long-term target amid Crystal Palace interest

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The 20-year-old signed with Racing Club in January and has five goals and two assists in 30 appearances for the Saints. Crystal Palace and Everton also contacted Racing Club in January, but Southampton’s £12m offer sealed the deal.

The Argentine club negotiated a 15 per cent sell-on clause into his contract and Brentford followed his progression in the league.

His good start to the season saw him rewarded on Thursday with his first call-up to Argentina at senior level. The 2022 World Cup winners will face Paraguay and Peru in the World Cup qualifiers on October 13 and 18 respectively.

Brentford are well stocked with central midfielders, but Alcaraz can also play higher up the pitch as an attacking midfielder or false nine. The Bees have fewer options at these positions, especially with Mikkel Damsgaard, Kevin Schade and Josh Dasilva all injured.

Meanwhile, head coach Thomas Frank is determined to keep Rasmus Hojlund quiet tomorrow, although he admits he is ‘happy’ that his fellow Dane is in goal-scoring form for Manchester United.

Hojlund scored twice in the 3-2 Champions League defeat to Galatasaray and Frank said: “He scores goals. I know he doesn’t play for Brentford, but I’m Danish and I’m happy that he a Danish player stands out and is doing well. .

“I have to say it was an impressive performance for him against Galatasaray – two very good goals. He looks like he is in a very good position. But I hope we can shut him up! That’s the goal. We have to be conscious not to give in. he has too much space to run; he is fast and he is good with the timing of his runs.”

Frank added: “We have to see situations early and try to stop the balls towards him – that’s definitely a key area for us.”

Frank said defender Ben Mee was the injured player closest to a return, adding: “He has a muscle injury. He is progressing well and is probably the closest to a return.”


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