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TOP STORY: Man United to turn to Tielemans
Manchester United are in the middle of a rebuild and though it’s the defence that is a priority, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is reportedly keen to take midfielder Youri Tielemans to Old Trafford.
The 22-year-old has been on loan at Leicester, with the Foxes working on a £40m deal to sign him permanent from Monaco. But, according to HLN, United are now in the race and the player is considering his options over which club he wants to join.
Man United’s transfer strategy has changed from recent seasons and the Belgium international is considered one for the future, much like 21-year-old Daniel James who just arrived from Swansea.
Tielemans does not want to return to Monaco, so it seems like he’ll be on his way as soon as a club stumps up the required fee.
22.42 BST: We’ll bring Saturday’s live edition of Transfer Talk to a close with some news about more promising players from Premier League academies looking to make the move to the Bundesliga. The Mirror reports that Chelsea’s England U18 forward Martell Taylor-Crossdale will travel to Germany this week for a medical ahead of signing for Hoffenheim on a free transfer, and adds that 17-year-old Fulham midfielder Cody Drameh is already in country ahead of a medical at Eintracht Frankfurt.
21.55 BST: More news on Reece James! The Liverpool Echo writes that Everton are one of the Premier League clubs interested in Chelsea’s 20-year-old full-back, but are also monitoring Atletico Madrid’s 27-year-old right-back Santiago Arias.
21.08 BST: Having impressed on loan at Wigan last season, Chelsea full-back Reece James is wanted by Swansea, according to the Mail, whose report adds that the Welsh club will have to fend off interest in the 20-year-old from Premier League and Bundesliga clubs.
20.21 BST: While Aston Villa and Bournemouth have both enquired about Stoke goalkeeper Jack Butland, the Mail reports that the newly promoted Premier League side have emerged as favourites for the England international that Stoke have valued at £23m.
19.34 BST: Calciomercato has some details on the ongoing saga of Paul Pogba‘s potential transfer to Real Madrid and Juventus. The story cites Corriere dello Sport as reporting that Juventus would be willing to offer Douglas Costa and cash in order to get the France World Cup winner, while Madrid would prefer to swap Gareth Bale or James Rodriguez without any money changing hands.
18.47 BST: Flamengo’s Reinier Jesus is being talked about as one of the best young players in Brazil and Tuttomercatoweb reports that Arsenal are ready to rival Real Madrid for his signature.
Jesus, 17, has scored five goals in nine games for Brazil U17s and has a release clause of £60.5m. He has been likened to Brazil legend Kaka and Real are certainly favourites to land him given he said this recently: “I’m heavily inspired by [Zinedine] Zidane. I’ve watched a lot of videos on the internet of him playing. I’m always trying to execute plays like he did.”
18.10 BST: Sampdoria midfielder Dennis Praet looks set to leave the club this summer, with his former manager Marco Giampaolo keen on bringing him to Milan.
Praet, 25, has also been linked to Arsenal and the midfielder’s agent, Martin Riha, told Calciomercato: “AC Milan is an important brand, it’s a big name. But there are also other clubs that want to sign him, especially abroad, they’ve already shown their interest … There are many clubs interested, we’ll know everything in a few weeks.”
17.31 BST: Wow. Manchester United are interested in signing West Ham defender Issa Diop and willing to pay £45m plus a player, Sky Sports News understands.
So far, United are being priced out of their defensive reinforcements as Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly would cost £100m and Leicester City value Harry Maguire at £80m.
But Diop, who impressed last season in London, would be a cheaper option. It’s not mentioned who the player might be … but we doubt it’s Alexis Sanchez.
17.17 BST: With a name like Everton, you’d think the Brazil and Gremio striker would be keen to move to Merseyside. But no, when asked about his future after scoring for his country against Bolivia in the Copa America he told the Daily Mail: “I’m a player that’s always trying to get on top [of the opposition]. Cutting in from the left with dribbles and good finishes. Clubs in Europe have this style of play too and maybe I can fit in at Manchester United and others.”
AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain have also shown an interest in the 23-year-old, who has a release clause of €80m, but it seems like he’s only got one club on his mind.
17.01 BST: Barcelona are reportedly willing to offer €25m for Borussia Dortmund’s Raphael Guerreiro, say SPORT.
Barca have been on the lookout for a left-back for some time, with Jordi Alba needing a competent backup, but have been looking at more experienced players like Atletico Madrid’s Filipe Luis until now.
Guerreiro, 25, only has a year left on his contract so Barcelona could get a cheap deal for the Portugal international.
16.25 BST: West Ham and Valencia have both had bids of £29m accepted by Celta Vigo for striker Maxi Gomez, say Sky Sports.
Gomez, 22, almost joined West Ham in January but Vigo wanted the full €50m release clause paid. However, it now sees that the Uruguay striker has a choice to make.
15.58 BST: Atletico Madrid midfielder Rodri is set to make a decision on his future this week, say the Daily Mail.
Rodri, 22, has attracted the interest of Man City, Bayern Munich and Man United but has asked for some time to think about a possible £62m move.
15.17 BST: The Guardian claims that “Aston Villa are interested in signing Ethan Ampadu on a season-long loan from Chelsea if the 18-year-old becomes available this summer.”
Ampadu is a Wales international midfielder but has yet to play in the Premier League, despite being held back by Chelsea to play a role in the first-team.
14.27 BST: More Arsenal news, but not good news as AC Milan have reportedly made a £35m bid to sign Lucas Torreira.
The Uruguay midfielder has already stated that he’s not really enjoying life in England as much as he did in Italy and new boss Marco Giampaolo wants to reunite with the player he had at Sampdoria.
Gazzetta dello Sport report Franck Kessie could be included in the deal.
13.55 BST: We suppose by now that Arsenal fans are quite used to their club signing some unknown French players who turn out to be pretty good.
In which case, the reports that they have agreed an £18m deal to land 21-year-old striker Alexis Claude-Maurice from Lorient should come as no surprise.
13.26 BST: Bournemouth chief executive Neill Blake has released a statement about the future of Ryan Fraser, with the winger linked to Arsenal recently.
“Much has been written and spoken about the future of Ryan Fraser, as his contract with AFC Bournemouth heads into its final 12 months,” he said.
“As is the club’s policy, details regarding contract negotiations or transfer activity are kept confidential and do not enter the public domain. However, following some recent reports I felt it was imperative to speak publicly and provide balanced clarity on the situation.
“The offer of a new long-term contract has been on the table for Ryan for some time. In September 2018, at the request of Ryan’s representative, negotiations were paused to allow the player to focus entirely on his football. He went on to have an outstanding season, with seven goals and 13 assists helping the club secure a fifth successive season of Premier League football.
“During that time, I have been — and continue to be — in regular dialogue with Ryan’s representative, and have made it clear to both him and the player that our contract offer remains on the table.
“Quite simply, Ryan is a fantastic player and an integral part of our squad. We look forward to welcoming Ryan back to us next month after a well-earned break, upon which he can focus on having another standout season for AFC Bournemouth.”
13.11 BST: Arsenal want to sell Mesut Ozil to free up some cash for new players, reports the Sun.
Ozil earns £350,000-a-week and has two years left on his contract, but the Gunners are prepared to offload him for around £30m. Turkish giants Galatasaray, Fenerbahce and Besiktas are all keen but the fee is too high when you include his wages too.
12.34 BST: Corriere dello Sport reckon that Manchester United have asked for Milan Skriniar to be included in any transfer deal for Romelu Lukaku.
Antonio Conte wants to make striker Lukaku his first signing, sources have told ESPN FC, but United are only interested if they can get the defender in return — plus some cash.
This one will be unlikely as Skriniar has only just signed a new long-term deal at Inter.
12.05 BST: Bayern Munich centre-back Mats Hummels could be on his way back to Borussia Dortmund, according to Bild.
The German publication reported on Friday evening that Dortmund have begun “serious conversations” with this year’s domestic double winners about bringing Hummels, 30, back to the club where he played between 2008 and 2016.
Bayern head coach Niko Kovac has reportedly agreed to let the 2014 World Cup-winner leave for a sum as high as €20m, but the Croatian boss has not commented on any potential move publicly.
Hummels came through Bayern’s academy before leaving for Dortmund in 2008, beginning an eight-year spell in which he won two Bundesliga titles and one DFB Pokal. He also finished as a Champions League runner-up in 2013, before returning to Bayern three years later, where he would win three consecutive league titles and another German cup.
His international career was ended earlier this year when Germany boss Joachim Low told him and Bayern teammates Jerome Boateng and Thomas Muller that they would no longer be considered for selection.
11.30 BST: Philippe Coutinho is a target for Chelsea to replace Eden Hazard if the Blues win their appeal against their transfer ban, according to Marca.
In an article listing potential destinations for the attacking midfielder, the Spanish daily says Coutinho is “definitely” wanted at Stamford Bridge if they can get the FIFA-imposed restriction on signings lifted.
Coutinho’s career has stalled has he joined Barcelona from Liverpool in January 2018, failing to reproduce the form that earned him a move to the Camp Nou that could yet cost Barca as much as €160m.
The 27-year-old scored two goals in Brazil’s 3-0 win over Bolivia ion Friday’s Copa America opener, and a good performance in that tournament could convince Chelsea to bring him back to the Premier League.
10.40 BST: KEEP OR DUMP? Arsenal edition — What should Unai Emery do about Mesut Ozil & Co. this summer? It promises to be another tricky offseason for the Gunners as they continue to rebuild their imbalanced squad in the hopes of contending again.
In the latest edition of our Keep or Dump? series, Gab Marcotti and Mark Ogden run through the Arsenal squad and dispense their advice about what to do.
09.55 BST: Frank Lampard will be appointed as Chelsea’s new manager to replace the outgoing Maurizio Sarri, according to The Sun.
And, according to the paper, Lampard wants to bring in his former teammate Didier Drogba back to Stamford Bridge with him, although not ex-Blues captain John Terry.
Lampard led Derby County to the Championship playoff final this season, where he lost to an Aston Villa side where John Terry is assistant to manager Dean Smith.
Sources have told ESPN FC that Sarri is set to leave Chelsea and take over at Juventus after the Italian champions agreed to pay around £5m in compensation.
09.15 BST: Mino Raiola, the agent who represents players including Manchester United’s Paul Pogba and Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt, has had his worldwide ban lifted by FIFA.
Earlier this month, world football’s governing body extended a three-month ban imposed by the Italian Football Association (FIGC) to have worldwide effect.
The reasoning behind the ban — which meant Raiola would have been unable to do deals until Aug. 9, the day after the close of the Premier League transfer window — was not made clear.
The 51-year-old appealed to the Italian FA’s disciplinary committee, which said on Thursday that it had lifted the three-month punishment.
Raiola is now free to conduct business for clients such as De Ligt, and he has been in the French capital this week to negotiate a deal with Paris Saint-Germain.
Meanwhile, sources told ESPN last month that Pogba was pushing for a summer move out of Manchester United, with Juventus interested in re-signing the France midfielder and long-time admirers Real Madrid also linked.
PAPER TALK (by Richard Edwards)
Arsenal set to block CSL interest in Auba
Arsenal are ready to spend big in the next few weeks to ensure that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette remain at the club when the new season kicks off in August.
Aubameyang has been the subject of interest from Chinese clubs who aren’t shy when it comes to splashing the cash, with Guangzhou Evergrande and Shanghai SIPG both rumoured to be waving enormous wads of cash in Aubameyang’s face in an attempt to lure him to the country’s Super League.
Now the Mirror reports the Arsenal hierarchy is prepared to sanction a whopping increase to Aubameyang’s current deal, handing him £190,000 per week to keep him in North London. And given he shared the Premier League’s Golden Boot in an otherwise underwhelming season at the Emirates, that’s hardly surprising.
Speculation surrounding his strike partner Lacazette has also put the Frenchman in line for a pay raise after being linked with a switch to Barcelona and Atletico Madrid since the end of the season, with the Emirates brass aiming to tie him down as they try to return Arsenal to past glories.
Willian to put pen to paper
Chelsea star Willian is set to sign a new two-year deal at Stamford Bridge, as the club tries to ward off interest in the player from Spanish giants Barcelona.
That’s the claim from The Sun, which says that the Brazilian maestro is “on the brink” of staying in West London. That is not only good news for Chelsea fans bracing themselves for life with a transfer ban, but also a further indication that the club have ditched their long-term philosophy of offering players only one-year deals once they’ve turned 30.
David Luiz was the first to benefit from that departure from policy and now it looks as if his Brazilian teammate is getting in on the act. Barcelona had been linked with a £30m move for Willian, a player they had been linked with back in January. Chelsea, meanwhile, risked waving goodbye to him for nothing at the end of next season if they hadn’t moved fast to secure his services.
After a week that saw Eden Hazard leave the Europa League champions, this counts as some good news at last.
Palace’s Wan-Bissaka eyeing United switch
The destination of Aaron Wan-Bissaka remains one of the summer’s major talking points, and although Palace are thought to be holding out for an offer of at least £50m for the 21-year-old, the player himself would still favour a move to Old Trafford.
At least that’s what Sky Sports is claiming.
Wan-Bissaka is one of English football’s hottest prospects and shone in the Palace side last season — sparking huge interest in his services from the big boys. United have already laid down a £40m offer for his services, but the player is contracted to Palace until 2022, meaning that the South Londoners are in no rush to cash in when his value looks set to keep on rising.
– Timo Werner‘s chances of turning up at Anfield next season have increased, with Bayern Munich’s interest in the player waning. So says the Mirror, which also claims that Bayern are more interested in bringing Leroy Sane back to Germany rather taking the forward off RB Leipzig’s hands.
– PSV Eindhoven and Netherlands international striker Luuk de Jong is in “advanced talks” with Liga MX side Monterrey, according to Mexican outlet Record. The former Borussia Monchengladbach man apparently has asked ex-PSV veteran Andres Guardado and current Boeren star Hirving Lozano about living in Mexico.
– Ajax ace Hakim Ziyech has been linked to a number of clubs since helping the Eredivisie side to the brink of the Champions League final this season. The Mirror reports that Arsenal and Liverpool lead the chase, but he won’t come cheap with the Dutch champions seeking in excess of £30m to let him go.