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- May 8, 2011
Hull City close in on Nick Powell and Dusan Kuciak deals
HULL City are closing in on deals to sign Slovakia goalkeeper Dusan Kuciak and Manchester United youngster Nick Powell ahead of Monday's transfer deadline.
City boss Steve Bruce has been patient during the January window but with four days of business remaining he is now eyeing up a double swoop to strengthen his promotion-chasing side.
A £250,000 fee has been agreed to recruit Kuciak from Polish side Legia Warsaw and the 30-year-old is now due in England over the weekend to discuss personal terms and undergo a medical.
City hope Kuciak's capture will also be followed by a loan swoop for Powell.
The 21-year-old has been at the centre of negotiations between City and Manchester United this week and has been cleared to leave Old Trafford for the remainder of the season. Provided Bruce is able to keep his existing squad intact ahead of Monday's deadline, deals for Kuciak and Powell could signal the beginning and the end of City's business this month.
The proposed move for Kuciak comes five months after the Tigers failed to prise the goalkeeper out of Legia Warsaw.
Two bids, significantly higher than the £250,000 now agreed, were rejected by the Polish side ahead of their Europa League campaign but there is now a willingness to cash in ahead of Kuciak's contract expiring in June.
Turkish side Osmanlispor and an unnamed German club were also credited with an interest by reports in Poland yesterday but the Tigers are confident of completing a deal that will provide competition for Allan McGregor and Eldin Jakupovic.
Kuciak has won 10 caps for Slovakia and spent time in his homeland with AS Trencin and MSK Zillina and with Romanian side FC Vaslui before joining Legia Warsaw five years ago.
If Kuciak has been earmarked to provide depth to City's goalkeeping ranks, it is hoped the interest in Powell will give City a fresh attacking edge.
The attack-minded midfielder was regarded as one of the brightest prospects in English football when joining Manchester United from Crewe for £6m as an 18-year-old, scoring on his Premier League debut in a 4-0 win over Wigan.
A season-long loan with Wigan provided regular Championship football in 2013-14 but another loan with Leicester the following term ended prematurely after just four appearances under ex-City boss Nigel Pearson.
Powell subsequently spent nine months out with a hamstring problem but did make two appearances for United's first team in December.
As well as coming off the bench in a 3-2 defeat away to Wolfsburg, a result that confirmed United's exit from the Champions League, the playmaker also featured in the Premier League defeat at Bournemouth.
Louis van Gaal is now content to see Powell fly the Old Trafford nest for a third time this month and City are confident they can land the youngster ahead of interest elsewhere in the Championship.
Powell is due to see his contract expire with Manchester United at the end of this season and a loan move to the KC Stadium could be the stepping stone towards a permanent deal.