Houllier wants Silvestre
By Patrick Haond
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Gerard Houllier has admitted he would be interested in signing Mikael Silvestre.
Lyon coach Gerard Houllier has admitted he would be interested in signing Mikael Silvestre if Manchester United agree to allow the defender to leave.
The Ligue 1 champions are facing a defensive crisis and both Silvestre and Chelsea's Glen Johnson have been considered as targets this month.
Although Silvestre has indicated he wants to fight for his place at Old Trafford, the double arrival of Nemanja Vidic and Patrice Evra means the writing is on the wall for the former Internazionale man.
Houllier has had to cope without Eric Abidal, Claudio Cacapa and Anthony Reveillere and now Jeremy Berthod has also joined the injured list. Lamine Diatta is on African Cup of Nations duty with Senegal.
Berthod hurt his thigh in the draw with Auxerre and faces three weeks on the sidelines, with Florent Malouda finishing the game at left back.
Houllier is tracking Silvestre, Johnson, Monaco defender Sebastien Squillaci, Basel stopper Patrick Muller, Anderlecht ace Vincent Kompany and Caen's Ronald Zubar.
The former Liverpool boss tried to sign Silvestre from Inter during his stint on Merseyside.
"It would be too stupid to spoil the rest of our season due to a lack of defenders," admitted Houllier in L'Equipe.
"That is why I want to hire one or two additional defenders. The problem is a little complex because it would be perfect to buy players who are able to play in the Champions League.
"Glen Johnson is an attractive right back but Jose Mourinho and Chelsea do not want to let him leave.
"Vincent Kompany is, at first, very expensive and Anderlecht only want a transfer next summer.
"Mikael Silvestre is a player able to appeal to us because he can play in the centre and on the left. The question is to know if he wants to leave Manchester.
"However, he has already played in the Champions League.
"Sebastien Squillaci is another very exciting player, even for the future. But he can't play in the Champions League as well this season.
"Patrick Muller would be perfect if Basel could loan him. His great is asset is to know the club perfectly [he was formerly with Lyon] and he has already proved a lot here.
"Zubar-Muller would be great for me, but it could also be Zubar-Squillaci or Zubar-Silvestre."