Gossip: Griezmann, Van Dijk, Carroll

Date published: Sunday 6th November 2016 11:50

MAN CITY TO LAUNCH GRIEZMANN BID
The rumours continue about Antoine Griezmann leaving Atletico Madrid next summer. The suspicion is that the only unanswered question is where he goes to next.

Manchester United have made no media secret of their desires, but a lack of Champions League football would surely rule them out. The Mirror report that Manchester City are aware of that situation and would also very much like to sign Griezmann. Are we set for a Manchester battle?

With Griezmann’s contract running until 2021, Atletico are hardly likely to let him leave for anything other than silly money, with £70m the reported price for the 25-year-old. The thought of him, Sergio Aguero and Kevin de Bruyne playing together gives me a funny feeling downstairs, and I’m not talking about the lounge.

 

MOURINHO WANTS VAN DIJK
If we had £10 for every central defender supposedly on Jose Mourinho’s wanted list we’d have upwards of, oh, £120?

Honestly, here’s your last fortnight alone:

‘Manchester United will trigger Atletico Madrid defender Diego Godin’s £30m release clause in January, with manager Jose Mourinho earmarking the 30-year-old to provide his team with leadership.’

‘Mourinho wants United to back him with a £50m move for Atletico Madrid defender Jose Gimenez, 21.’

‘Jose Mourinho is plotting a revamp of his defence and is targeting Roma’s Germany defender Antonio Rudiger.’

‘Chelsea are interested in Paris St-Germain centre-back Presnel Kimpembe, but face competition for the 21-year-old from Liverpool and Manchester United.’

Now we have another name, Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk. He’s certainly one of the best in the business.

All summer United were linked with a move for Jose Fonte, but his central defensive partner at Southampton would clearly be the better long-term option. Van Dijk has been magnificent since arriving in the Premier League from Southampton, and is still only 25.

In the Sunday People, Steve Bates says that £30m Van Dijk is Mourinho’s priority in January. We’re not being mean, but Bates’ Sunday exclusives don’t have a fantastic hit rate. Still, this does make perfect sense other than the fee, which seems on the low side. 

 

CARROLL OFF TO CHINA?
Hahahaha, now this is an excellent story. The Sunday Express report that Andy Carroll, who is struggling to even get fit to play any kind of football, is the subject of offers from China. Those offers would be worth £300,000 a week to the striker. Bloody hell.

Beijing Guoan and Guangzhou R&F are the two Chinese Super League clubs mentioned, and one of them are apparently happy to offer West Ham a profit on the £15m they paid to Liverpool for him. Reckon they might accept that bid?

 

AND THE REST
Mesut Ozil is ready to commit his future to Arsenal with the club confident the German will sign a new £160,000-a-week, five-year deal… Bournemouth star Adam Smith is on standby for an England call… Crystal Palace are lining up an ambitious January bid for Manchester United’s France international midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin… Brazil international Oscar will be allowed to leave Chelsea in January… Wayne Rooney is determined to stay at Manchester United until his contract ends in summer 2019 despite losing his place in the first team.

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