REAL’S ALTERNATIVE TO POGBA
‘Man Utd tipped to sign Declan Rice for ‘above £90million’ in January transfer window’ reads the Daily Express headline. Ooh, tell me more.
‘Manchester United have “every chance” of signing West Ham midfielder Declan Rice, according to Noel Whelan.’ Oh. Stand down, everyone.
We can’t lie, that is the quality of whisper doing the rounds this morning. What else is there? Well, Sergio Ramos has said some actual words…
“I think Real Madrid always has the door open for good players such as him,” said Ramos in response to a question about Paul Pogba. This is the saga that just won’t die, despite Manchester United’s best efforts.
United are said to be willing to offer Pogba a new contract, which seems a pointless exercise. Ed Woodward should know by now when he is being played for a pay rise, and this is not one of those occasions. Pogba just wants to go, but Real haven’t got the money to back up the big talk.
Still, in the unlikely event that Pogba does sign new terms and, crucially, commit his long-term future to United, then Sky Sports are recycling the suggestion that Real will move instead for Christian Eriksen.
Real have kept the Denmark star on a string this summer, where they intend to keep him until next year when he becomes a free agent. If they have sussed by then that Pogba can’t be bought, then they’ll go for Eriksen instead. Which has been their stance for the last six months.
JUVE TO RIVAL REAL FOR MBAPPE
Pogba and Eriksen aren’t the only players on Real’s agenda for next summer. Zinedine Zidane is widely reported to have made a play for Kylian Mbappe, though Real could have competition.
Juventus are eyeing a move for the PSG star, according to CalcioMercato. The report claims that Juve ‘are looking at Mbappe after failing to prize Neymar away from the French side’.
Juve couldn’t afford Neymar and the same can probably be said of Mbappe. Real can’t really afford him either, but if he goes anywhere, it will most likely be the Bernabeu.
AND THE REST
Dalian Yifang are being linked with Dries Mertens which could boost Arsenal’s pursuit of Yannick Carrasco… Maurizio Sarri blocked any deal for Juventus to Douglas Costa despite interest from Man Utd… Chelsea have opened contract talks with Emerson… Callum Hudson-Odoi remains close to signing a new £180,000-a-week deal… Tottenham watched Fenerbahce striker Vedat Muriqi in action for Kosovo alongside scouts from Lazio, Fiorentina and Napoli… Spurs wanted Roma midfielder Nicolo Zaniolo before they signed Giovani lo Celso on loan.