Wednesday, 3rd August, 2011

Representatives of English Premier League side Stoke City have arrived in Italy to negotiate for Inter midfielder McDonald Mariga.

Italian source Sky Sport 24 has confirmed that the Potters have stepped up their interest in the out-of-favour Kenyan midfielder as they look to quickly add to their squad before the start of the new Premier League season.

Mariga is expected to leave the Nerazzurri this summer after failing to establish himself at the club since joining from Parma at the beginning of 2010.

An all-action high-energy midfielder, Mariga has emerged as Stoke’s primary midfield target after Tony Pulis’ side missed out on former Liverpool man Mohamed Sissoko, who opted to move to big spending Paris Saint-Germain rather than head to the Potteries.

Mariga has been linked with a move to England previously, with both Aston Villa and West Brom mooted to hold an interest in the 24-year-old, while Manchester City are also known to have run the rule over the midfielder.

Ligue 1 side Lyon have emerged as a potential destination of late though, with Inter considering throwing the Kenyan into an offer for full back Michel Bastos.

But now Stoke are bidding to take Mariga off Inter’s hands and, for the right price, the Italians will surely consent to his departure.

It remains to be seen however whether Mariga will jump at the opportunity to join the Europa League hopefuls.

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