Gossip: City to make Real approach; Arsenal get Pepe boost

Date published: Tuesday 18th December 2018 8:45

Manchester City have reportedly made contact with Isco via an agent to suss out whether the Spain playmaker would be interested in joining up with Pep Guardiola.

That is the claim of AS, which reports that City are preparing to table a bid of around £72million for the 26-year-old. That figure, though, is attributed to ‘reports in the UK’, the origin of which is unclear. Still, we’ll plough on…

City wanted Isco when he left Malaga to join Real in 2013 and though he hasn’t seen much action under Santiago Solari, the story goes that Real would not entertain any offer under £90million.

Guardiola presumably would have been encouraged by Isco getting stick from the Bernabeu crowd during the 3-0 defeat to CSKA Moscow last week, which the player reportedly returned with some gusto.


Nicolas Pepe is catching the eye of clubs across Europe with his form this season. The Ivory Coast winger has scored 12 goals and created seven in 18 appearances for Lille and Barcelona have apparently shortlisted the 23-year-old as an option to replace Luis Suarez.

Arsenal are also said to be sniffing and, according to L’Equipe, the Gunners have received some encouragement that Pepe could be available next month. Lille owner Gerard Lopez recently said: “What if Barcelona gives me €100million to buy Pepe? He will not leave this winter. I want him to continue here, we want him to stay, he wants to stay.”

But reports suggest half the figure Lopez discussed might tempt him to sell, despite Lille leading the race to finish second in Ligue 1 behind PSG.


Tuesday’s Paul Pogba update: Juventus will bid £125million next month for the Man Utd bench-warmer, who is desperate to leave but Ed Woodward doesn’t want to sell.

That’s what the Daily Star reckons, at least. Check back tomorrow and every day after that for similar words in a slightly different order.


Juventus met Mino Raiola to discuss Moise Kean’s contract renewal, Pogba and Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt… Mason Holgate can leave Everton on loan in January… Barcelona have received £65m offers from China for Malcom… Adrien Rabiot will not sign a new contract with PSG.

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