How do you offer a new angle to a story that has already been widely reported? Eden Hazard will make a decision on his future in due course – and will hopefully not drag it out like Antoine Griezmann did last year. But will it be Chelsea or Real Madrid?
The Sun are here to tell us that he is bound for Spain in a move that ‘could trigger an incredible chain of transfers across Europe’. And oh boy, that ‘could’ is doing an awful lot of work.
The first of those transfers is that of Isco, who could join Chelsea ‘in a cash-plus-player deal’. He would certainly no longer be needed at Real, who AS reported would ‘be willing to do business’ at around £70.3m earlier this week. Hazard’s cost would cover that and more, of course.
The second move would be for Mateo Kovacic to make his Stamford Bridge stay permanent. Which The Sun say ‘could convince Chelsea to cash in on Bayern Munich target Callum Hudson-Odoi’. Why would keeping a central midfielder they already currently have persuade them to sell a winger? And why would selling Hazard, a winger, directly lead to them selling Hudson-Odoi, a winger?
Anyway, he could go for £45m, which would make James Rodriguez pretty much surplus to requirements at Bayern. But ‘fresh reports from Spain’ claim that Juventus will be happy to take the Colombian on.
That could lead to Paulo Dybala also joining Real, which ‘is sure to spell trouble’ for Gareth Bale, who has ‘long-term admirers’ in Manchester United. ‘But Real may try to leverage United’s interest to their own advantage by enquiring after Marcus Rashford.’
They add that ‘there are fears Rashford could turn his back on his boyhood club to become Real’s new striker’. Which is weird because United opened contract talks with him on Tuesday, and he will pretty much definitely not leave his boyhood club anytime soon, particularly not now they’re good again. Yet here we are, being told Real ‘are willing to pay up to £100m’ to sign him.
So that’s how Real Madrid signing Eden Hazard from Chelsea results in Gareth Bale joining Manchester United and Marcus Rashford also moving to Real. And all of this will definitely happen. Despite the fact it means Real are signing an entirely new forward line for upwards of £300m in one transfer window.
UNDER MY UMMMM…BARELLA?
Silly Nicolo Barella. He turned down a ‘dizzying offer’ to move to Chelsea to play with Isco and Mateo Kovacic, but not Eden Hazard and Callum Hudson-Odoi. He’ll be kicking himself now.
Tuttomercatoweb say Chelsea offered around £43.9m to Cagliari for Barella, with the midfielder receiving a five-year contract on ‘a mountain of money’. But while the club accepted the offer, the player turned them down.
They give a list of reasons, ranging from ‘staying in Italy’ being his ‘priority’ due to his family, and that staying will trigger an ‘auction’ in the summer. Clever.
AND THE REST
Tottenham are planning to step up their interest in Norwich’s 18-year-old English full-back Max Aarons before the summer transfer window… Sampdoria’s Danish defender Joachim Andersen, 22, says he is still concentrating on playing for the Italian side amid reported interest from Tottenham… Newcastle United attempted to sign Juventus’ Croatia winger Marko Pjaca, 23, who is on loan at Fiorentina, during the January transfer window.