Gossip: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Man Utd in €42m battle

Matt Stead

It was Tuttosport who earlier this month initially claimed that Tottenham and Ivan Perisic were ‘betrothed’. They are back again with a small update on the future of the Inter Milan winger.

The Italian newspaper is here to offer some reasons as to why Perisic, who handed in a transfer request in January after Arsenal “conned” him, might actually stay. And the first involves Mauro Icardi, reported target for Chelsea and Manchester United, who is currently exiled at Inter. He has not played since February 9, has been stripped of the captaincy, was fined for returning late from the winter break, and has a contract that expires in 2021 with no signs of an extension.

Wanda Nara, his wife and agent, is also thought to be unpopular with Inter’s boardroom due to her propensity to give public interviews calling on the club to invest in more players to support her client.

Manager Luciano Spalletti stated recently that “there are certain things surrounding the lad which need to be fixed”. Read between those lines, why don’t you?

The situation with Icardi means Perisic has taken on a greater importance at Inter despite his own attempts to leave. With Icardi reportedly available to any foreign club for £104m, Inter are unlikely to want to lose both.

And they might actually be taking Wanda Nara’s advice on board. The club reportedly wants to sign Ivan Rakitic from Barcelona, which could persuade Perisic to stay. The winger is thought to have already played a big part in the arrival of Sime Vrsaljko, while Marcelo Brozovic completes a strong Croatian contingent.

Mauricio Pochettino ‘continues to think of Perisic’, but it seems less and less likely he will get him. If either Chelsea, Manchester United or any other potential suitors act on their £104m interest in Icardi, Perisic almost certainly stays.


Might Tottenham be interested in James Rodriguez instead? Every other f***er is.

In the smallest of stories buried in the Daily Mirror (it is 90 words in total), we are told that ‘Premier League clubs…have been alerted to the availability of’ the Colombian, who is currently struggling to disturb bushes, never mind pull up trees, at Bayern Munich.

Rodriguez is on a two-year loan from Real Madrid that expires in the summer, so his future is shrouded in mystery. After starting just 12 of a possible 30 Bundesliga and Champions League games, Bayern president Uli Hoeness is understandably reluctant to part with the €42m it would take to sign him.

Real are unlikely to want the 27-year-old back either, and so the Mirror say that Manchester United and Liverpool are leading the race for a player that ‘Arsenal and Chelsea are also interested’ in.


It was all just Kepa stuff on Monday. Now it’s all just Kepa and Brendan Rodgers. What a combination.