Anderlecht interested in U.S. defender Onyewu

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Standard Liege defender Oguchi Onyewu has quietly become one of the hottest properties in the transfer market. The U.S. international is out of contract at the end of this season, and Standard, which last week said it would offer him a new contract, assumes he will move on to a bigger club and league.

On Thursday, reports out of Belgium claim league runner-up Anderlecht is interested in bringing the 26-year-old center back to Astrid Park in the summer, or even in the January transfer window. The latter option, of course, would mean paying its rivals a fee.

The Brussels club has made no secret of its desire to add an accomplished defender since the departure of Argentine Nicolas Pareja to Espanyol. Another option for Les Mauves appears to be Lokomotiv Moscow Emir Spahic

The odds that Onyewu decides to stay in the Belgian Jupiler League with Anderlecht are slim. The Maryland native has been with Standard since 2004 and accomplished all he can, including leading the club to the trophy last year, its first championship in 25 years.

Onyewu spent a loan spell with Newcastle United in early 2007 and has already stated his desire to return to the Premier League. --