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Guus Hiddink, Samuel Eto’o and Wayne Rooney? Mega-rich Anzhi Makhachkala eye Manchester United striker

By Dean Wilkins

Nothing would get in the way of stopping mega-rich Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala from signing the world’s best players, including Manchester United talisman Wayne Rooney.

Their billionaire owner Suleyman Kerimov has been accumulating the game’s biggest names after signing former Barcelona striker Samuel Eto’o and snapping up Guus Hiddink to manage the club.

And with former Premier League talent Yuriy Zhirkov and Lassana Diarra among their ranks, Brazilian World Cup winner Roberto Carlos would be delighted to add Rooney to their attacking force.

When asked if the club would buy Rooney, Carlos said: “If the owner of Anzhi has a wish to buy somebody, he will go and do it.

“[Rooney’s] one of the best players in the world and any team would be happy to have him in their squad. He’s still a very young player.

“Of course I could not say when, and if, it will happen. It’s not only Anzhi who can want to buy him. There are plenty of teams in Italy and Spain, all over the world, who are eager to have a player like Rooney.

“But we are trying to change the image of the club. It’s not just about money.”

Anzhi take on Liverpool in the Europa League tonight and although they boast an array of international talent – their first team includes 14 Russian players and their reserve team is entirely made up of home-grown youngsters.

“Of course we are going to buy good players but not only international players,” added Carlos, who is now a club director. “We want to sign good Russian players that are not that expensive.”

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