UNITED WANT FERNANDES ON FLIGHT TO OZ
It is only two days until Manchester United take off for Australia and Ed Woodward has a lot of work to do before packing for Perth.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wanted the vast majority of his summer business completed before he takes his team Down Under but Woodward has managed to get only two deals over the line.
Woodward is seemingly closest to booking Bruno Fernandes a ticket for the ‘palace with wings’ which United will use to make the 16-hour journey on Sunday. Our friends at Sport Witness have pored over the stories in Portugal which paint a confusing picture. Fernandes’ agent is said to have been in England yesterday while other reports suggest Miguel Pinho will fly to meet United and Tottenham today. The hard work over personal terms appears to have already been done but Woodward still needs to come up with a package which might tempt Sporting Lisbon president Federico Varandas. Sporting also depart for their pre-season camp on Sunday and Varandas is similarly keen to get Fernandes’ future sorted before they head to Switzerland.
United are trying to reach agreements for Harry Maguire and Sean Longstaff but neither seem close.
BETTER CALL SAUL IF POGBA QUITS
It seems United have enough problems trying to tempt the players they already have to get on the plane for Oz. There were reports that Paul Pogba was reluctant to travel since he so desperately wants to quit the club but the Red Devils have denied that to be the case. Pogba is due to return to Carrington before Sunday and United insist he’ll be travelling, especially since no club has come close to making an acceptable offer for the 26-year-old.
But, if that eventually happens, United have contingency plans. Seemingly loads of them if all the reports are to be believed.
The latest links Saul Niguez with a move to Old Trafford. According to AS, Woodward has already been in touch with Atletico Madrid over a possible deal but it will be tough negotiation. Atletico have already lost Lucas Hernandez, Rodri, Diego Godin, Juanfran and Filipe Luis. Antoine Griezmann is also likely to be on his way too.
Saul is under contract with Atletico until 2026 but his agents are said to be looking for a pay rise which… ah, right.
ARSENAL EYE ARGENTINA AND BRAZIL DEFENDERS
Arsenal, the other club scrambling around for new players, are also the subject of plenty of whispers this morning.
Globe Esporte reckons the Gunners have been talking to Gremio over a possible deal for Walter Kannemann. The 28-year-old centre-back with five Argentina caps is said to be valued at around £12million, though Wolves are also reported to be sniffing.
Arsenal are also said to be interested in Marcelo, who is said to have told Real Madrid that he wants to leave. Sport claims Unai Emery has made contact with Real but he’s not the 31-year-old’s only suitor. PSG, Juventus and AC Milan are also keen on the Brazil star.
It seemed like Arsenal had already won the race to sign Germany goalkeeper Markus Schubert from Dynamo Dresden but Sport-1 says Schalke have come from nowhere to grab the 21-year-old on a free. Schalke will then send Ralf Fahrmann on loan to Norwich for the season.
AND THE REST
Inter Milan are stalling on a bid for Romelu Lukaku… United are willing to pay David de Gea £350,000 a week… West Ham are keen to sign Celta Vigo striker Maxi Gomez… the Hammers are also being linked with West Brom forward Salomon Rondon… Leicester want Burnley defender James Tarkowski if Harry Maguire leaves… Southampton are prepared to loan out Mario Lemina.