If you thought the Chinese Super League was content with signing world-renowned mega stars such as John Obi Mikel, you were wrong. The Daily Mail’s latest claims are set to infuriate many a fan and pundit across the land (which is quite handy for the Daily Mail).
Sami Mokbel writes that clubs are ‘prepared to pay a top England footballer a staggering £800,000 a week to join their revolution’. And this is not an attempt to lure Wayne Rooney from Manchester United. No, they want a young player ‘in his prime’.
That means Dele Alli. That means Ross Barkley. That means Harry Kane. That means Daniel Sturridge. For some reason, Jon Flanagan is not mentioned.
Rooney and John Terry remain targets for Chinese clubs, but their ‘priority’ is someone younger. And while it might seem an easy decision for Alli or Barkley or Kane or Sturridge to make, if you throw £800,000 a week at someone, there’s every chance it could change their mind.
Manchester City might have crushed West Ham in the FA Cup, with Pep Guardiola’s side fourth in the Premier League table, but their defence remains an issue.
John Stones has not started consecutive Premier League games since early December, question marks remain over Nicolas Otamendi, and Aleksandar Kolarov has still not stopped being a thing at centre-half. They have conceded 22 goals in 20 league games – the same as 16th-placed Middlesbrough.
The answer, according to The Sun, is to loan Holger Badstuber for six months. The Bayern Munich defender worked with Guardiola during his time in Germany, and has been identified as a short-term fix.
It does seem a promising signing – ‘he is very good in the air and with a good passing range – crucial to Guardiola’s gameplan’ – but there is a slight problem: The 27-year-old has started just 26 Bundesliga games since the start of the 2012/13 season due to a succession of injuries.
Alexis Sanchez, eh? The Chilean has had a busy past week, breaking a window in the Bournemouth dressing room and having a blazing row with his Arsenal teammates, despite doing neither of those things. Oh, and those contract wrangles continue.
The Daily Mirror are the latest to bring us the latest, and they claim that Paris Saint-Germain are sniffing round the forward. Patrick Kluivert is a big fan, and a bigger compliment does not exist.
The French side would be able to offer better wages than Arsenal, and they reckon a bid of £60million would convince the Gunners to let him go.
AND THE REST
Everton are ready to make an improved £22m bid for Manchester United’s France midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin, 27…Southampton will try and sign Liverpool’s France defender Mamadou Sakho, 26, after their captain Jose Fonte handed in a transfer request…Moussa Dembele does not want to leave Celtic in January, despite West Ham’s reported £20m bid for the 20-year-old French striker…Crystal Palace are ready to rival West Ham for Hull winger Robert Snodgrass, with the Scotland international expected to cost up to £9m…Juventus’ France full-back Patrice Evra could re-join Manchester United, but only as a coach in Jose Mourinho’s backroom staff…Chelsea and Manchester City want to sign former Stoke midfielder Steven N’zonzi. The 28-year-old, who now plays for Sevilla, reportedly has a £25m buyout clause in his contract, although Juventus are also interested in the player.