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TOP STORY: Pogba to go on strike; Bayern eye Bale
The future of Paul Pogba continues to make the back pages and, despite Manchester United’s stance on not selling the midfielder, he’s reportedly set to go on strike in a bid to force through a move to Real Madrid.
While Pogba himself said on Sunday that he thinks it is time for a “new challenge”, ABC in Spain said that the midfielder will make it clear that he wants to join Zinedine Zidane at the Bernabeu, with a bid of around €120m enough to land the 26-year-old World Cup winner.
ESPN sources said back in May that Pogba was determined to push for a move even if the club refused to sell him, while Real Madrid are the only club he would considering joining.
Meanwhile, Real might open up some space in their squad by finally moving Gareth Bale out. The Sun have a story which says that Bayern Munich are looking to land the Welshman on a season-long loan, and are willing to pay his £350,000-a-week wages too.
22.30 BST: That’s it for our live blog today folks, but fear not, we’ll back shortly with the latest paper rounds and will do the whole thing all over again tomorrow. Thanks for checking in and see you next time.
21.55 BST: Speaking of stars with questionable attitudes at PSG (see previous post), the Ligue 1 champions would consider selling Neymar this summer if the right offer comes along, say L’Equipe. The outlet reports that a return to former club Barcelona or their La Liga rivals Real Madrid are the two most likely destinations should the Brazil international leave.
21.10 BST: Paris Saint-Germain chairman and CEO Nasser Al-Khelaifi has said that the French champions will no longer tolerate superstar attitudes from their biggest players after a forgettable 2018-19 season.
“Players will have to be more responsible than before,” Al-Khelaifi told France Football. “It must be completely different. They will have to do more and work harder. They are not there for their own amusement. If they do not agree, the doors are open — Ciao!”
20.20 BST: Some more backup keeper news here — yes, it’s been that kind of day — with The Sun reporting that Manchester City are lining up a move for Eibar’s Asier Riesgo. The out-of-contract Spaniard would arrive on a free and, according to the report, would allow Pep Guardiola to send rising star Aro Muric on loan this season — potentially to Nottingham Forest — as Ederson remains first-choice in goal for the Premier League champions.
19.30 BST: Liverpool are in the market for a backup goalkeeper with Simon Mignolet set to leave Anfield and the Daily Mail report that the Champions League winners have set their sights on Southampton’s Alex McCarthy to fill the expected void.
18.40 BST: How do you get Callum Hudson-Odoi to commit his long-term future to Chelsea? That’s easy according to the Daily Mail, who report that the England international could be convinced to stay if Chelsea filled the managerial vacancy left by Maurizio Sarri’s departure with club legend and Derby County boss Frank Lampard.
17.51 BST: Lille winger Nicolas Pepe has been tracked by a number of Europe’s top clubs, including Bayern, Arsenal, PSG and Man United. But it seems Liverpool are keen to do a deal and have made a bid, say Le10Sport.
Pepe, 24, is valued at around €50m – with Jurgen Klopp’s side putting in a bid that comes close to that valuation apparently.
17.04 BST: The Sunday Telegraph claim that Manchester United have rejected the chance to sign Youri Tielemans from Monaco for £40m. Clearly they have other targets to pursue, which leaves Leicester free to splash the cash in order to land him on a permanent deal after his successful loan spell last season.
16.35 BST: Ajax winger David Neres has attracted interest from Arsenal, Everton and Chelsea, and the 22-year-old says he’s keen on playing in England.
“Of course the Premier League interests me,” he told the Liverpool Echo. “It’s the best league in the world, and I’ve always wanted to play there. But I leave all that in God’s hands.”
The Sporting Lisbon midfielder has attracted plenty of attention already this summer but Atletico are in need of some reinforcements after losing a host of players, including Antoine Griezmann‘s potential move to Barcelona.
Manchester United, Man City and Everton have all be credited with interest in Rose, though his £80,000-a-week wages could prove problematic.
14.48 BST: Leicester City star Wilfred Ndidi has been linked with Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool, but insists he isn’t thinking about a move.
“I am flattered when hearing such a thing,” the Nigeria midfielder told Goal. “It is very good to hear about that interest from big clubs, but there is nothing on the ground so I won’t care about it. I am focusing on AFCON with Nigeria now, and then pre-season with Leicester City. We have a great manager with ambition to compete with big clubs in the Premier League.”
14.02 BST: Maurizio Sarri has left his role as Chelsea manager and joined Serie A champions Juventus.
OFFICIAL | Maurizio Sarri is the new Juventus coach. #WelcomeSarri
— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) June 16, 2019
Who should replace him?
Pogba has revealed his desire to leave the club and has been linked with a move to Real Madrid to work with coach Zinedine Zidane, or with a return to Juventus. However, the 26-year-old has a contract until 2021 with United holding an option to extend the deal by another 12 months, and they have been clear that they are under no pressure to sell.
Sadly for Arsenal fans, that means the Belgium winger is out of your club’s budget as Unai Emery only has around £45m to spend in total and isn’t willing to splash the majority on one player.
13.18 BST: Monaco teenager Hannibal Mejbri is in the middle of a legal dispute with his club, but Manchester United have made another bid for him, according to Le Parisien.
Mejbri, 16, has tried to cancel his contract with Monaco — arguing that he was under 15 when he signed it. And United, who made a bid for him in January to trigger the whole proceedings, have come back with an offer of £3.5m.
12.27 BST: Arsenal have been looking for new defenders but they risk losing one of their academy stars if they don’t give him a chance this season. Krystian Bielik helped Charlton Athletic get promoted on loan last year but says he wants a chance with the Gunnners or he’ll move on.
“My future is unknown but there is one thing I can say for sure: I will definitely not go back to Arsenal U23 team,” he told Polish media while on duty at the European Championships with Poland under-21s. “At this stage it wouldn’t make sense. If I do not receive the possibility to join the first team permanently, I will have to look for other solutions.
“I feel like a senior player now so I want to play senior football. This is, however, not the right moment to discuss these issues as I want to be 100 percent focused on the European Championships.”
12.12 BST: Last week, TT reported that Tottenham were preparing a club-record offer of £60m for Lyon midfielder Tanguy Ndombele.
Now Ndombele says he would be happy to play for a club like Spurs.
He told Telefoot: “Tottenham are a big club, they finished in 4th place in their league, they were Champions League finalists — which player would not be interested in a big club?”
11.49 BST: Chelsea assistant coach Gianfranco Zola has been linked with a move once Maurizio Sarri departs for Juventus and Sky Sports report he is to leave the club when his contract expires this summer.
Zola could well join Sarri, but he’s made it clear that he’s happy to stay at Stamford Bridge under a new manager — Frank Lampard or otherwise.
11.30 BST: The real deal didn’t do so well for Argentina against Colombia, so meet all the ‘other’ Messis! ‘Baby,’ ‘Mini,’ ‘Kiwi,’ ‘Snow’ and more…
James has only just finished a two-year loan with Bayern but chose not to sign for them, while Napoli have yet to reach a deal for an option to buy the Colombia international permanently.
10.37 BST: Real Madrid and Barcelona are circling for 16-year-old Fulham winger Harvey Elliott, says the Sun.
Elliott, who became the youngest player to ever appear in the Premier League last season, has reportedly rejected a new contract offer and is now attracting attention from some of the biggest clubs in the world. RB Leipzig were keen on the England under-17 star but with Spain’s big two involved, it seems like he may have loftier goals.
10.04 BST: PSV and Netherlands right-back Denzel Dumfries has reportedly caught the eye of Manchester United.
09.32 BST: Benfica starlet Joao Felix has his pick of Europe’s top clubs, but Manchester City might be able to steal a march on the competition by signing him now and loaning him back for a season.
The Mirror say that City are looking to beat Manchester United and Atletico Madrid to the punch by making a €120m offer to trigger Felix’s release clause, then send him back to Portugal.
Blues legend Lampard almost sealed promotion with Derby but has never managed in the Premier League and has reportedly been concerned over the long-term suitability of the Chelsea job. However, Abramovich allegedly called him up and told him “he will be allowed at least two seasons to prove his worth at Stamford Bridge.”
PAPER TALK (by Richard Edwards)
Mo money, no problems
Real Madrid and Juventus were said to be setting up £150m offers for the forward, but the report claims “he feels the timing is wrong to leave Merseyside.”
Europe’s elite will still be on alert, however, as Salah “has indicated that he will review his situation next summer.” So that means a year-long saga of speculation, probably ending in a new contract.
Juve planning a nice Trip
Juventus have spent the past few years trying to land some of the world’s best players, see one Cristiano Ronaldo as evidence, and now they are turning attention to right-back.
With Joao Cancelo seemingly set to join Manchester City, Juve need a replacement and should have around €50m to spend. The Times claim that the Italian champions are ready to put it all on Tottenham’s Kieran Trippier.
Though presumably they hope they’ll be getting the Trippier who starred at the World Cup for England, and not the one who struggled through last season’s Premier League campaign.
Homecoming for Hummels
Mats Hummels could soon be back at Borussia Dortmund, if reports of an imminent exit from Bayern Munich are to be believed.
The Mirror writes that Dortmund are closing in on a move for the German centre-back, nearing an agreement for a £27 million fee with Munich.
Hummels is a man who loves a homecoming, having begun his career at Bayern before moving to Dortmund for £4m in 2009 when Jurgen Klopp swooped. He won two Bundesliga titles with the club and played a key role in their march to the 2013 Champions League final. Then he headed back to Munich for £30m in 2016.
Now, though, with Niko Kovac no longer guaranteeing him a first-team place, Hummels could be off again, to more than familiar ground.
– West Ham’s chase of Maxi Gomez looks set to end in failure, with the Guardian reporting that the Celta Vigo striker fancies a move to Valencia rather than the least atmospheric stadium in Planet Football. Manuel Pellegrini has been typically studious in the transfer market so far this summer, recruiting Pablo Fornals of Villareal on Friday. But now West Ham’s hierarchy fear that their quest to bring Gomez to East London will be a fruitless one.