Gossip: Reds accept Keita defeat; Perisic, Bale, Herrera

Ian Watson

Liverpool won’t now submit a third offer for Naby Keita, despite apparently spending at least the last week preparing one.

The Reds have accepted that RB Leipzig aren’t kidding when they say he isn’t for sale so, according to the Liverpool Echo, they will walk away. For now.

The story suggests Liverpool will go back for Keita next year, which means we get to do all this again in 12 months. Oh, joy!

At least by waiting until next summer, Liverpool will save a bundle of cash, with the 22-year-old’s release clause reportedly set to drop to £48million. Another season like last, though, and the Reds could have a lot more competition for Keita.


Man Utd will go back again for Ivan Perisic but, according to The Independent, the club are worried that their apparently-doomed pursuit of Gareth Bale may have cost them.

United have changed their mind almost as often as Ed Woodward has changed his underwear this summer, with barely a day going by without a report of the Red Devils switching targets.

Jose Mourinho appeared single-minded in his pursuit of Perisic until the Red Devils had their head turned by the apparent availability of Bale. Now the Welshman is supposedly staying in Madrid, United will have to go back to Inter Milan and restart negotiations, which had led the two parties closer to an agreement before Inter whisked the winger off to China on their pre-season tour.

Inter’s resolve to stick to their asking price is unlikely to have softened over the last fortnight, so United will have to stump up close to £48million if Mourinho is to get the minimum number of new recruits that he has asked for.

The task then is for Ed Woodward to get Mourinho a midfielder, with the club supposedly chopping and changing between Eric Dier and Nemanja Matic. But the vice chairman has also reportedly been working on a deal to tie down one of the midfielders already at the club.

According to the Daily Express, Woodward “met with Ander Herrera’s agent Arturo Canales in Washington during the club’s pre-season tour of America to discuss new terms in a bid to secure the 27-year-old’s long-term future at the club.”

Herrera, who has recently been made vice-captain, has been linked with Barcelona.


Barcelona have a three-man Premier League short-list to replace PSG target Neymar which features Dele Alli, Philippe Coutinho and Eden Hazard…Alexis Sanchez is in disagreement with his agent over his Arsenal future as the Chilean star attempts to secure his Gunners exit…Meanwhile, Manchester City are waiting for Sanchez ‘with open arms’ after the forward casts doubt over his Arsenal future…Arsenal have seen a third bid for Thomas Lemar rejected as Monaco ‘turn down a €50m offer’…Leeds United and Swansea are battling to sign Valencia striker Alvaro Negredo…Roma have launched a final bid for Riyad Mahrez…Bayern Munich have confirmed Chelsea’s interest in Renato Sanches but they face stiff competition for his signature from nine other teams…Lucas Perez’s agent confirms Arsenal have received a bid from Deportivo La Coruna for the wantaway striker…Inter Milan boss Luciano Spalletti gives Ivan Perisic green light for his Manchester United move – but they want Anthony Martial on loan plus cash in exchange…Manchester United have handed a trial to Brazilian wonderkid Gabriel Martinelli.

Alex Sandro is set for a move to Chelsea with Antonio Conte prepared to pay Juventus a world-record £61m fee for the defender…West Ham are set to offer Newcastle and Crystal Palace target Adrian a new contract despite Joe Hart signing as their No 1 ‘keeper…Brighton are chasing Viktoria Plzen defender Ales Mateju as Chris Hughton continues his summer spending spree…Arsenal fear Alexis Sanchez could go on strike in a bid to force a move away from the Emirates…Manchester City are sending young winger Isaac Buckley-Ricketts to Twente Enschede for the season…Southampton have reportedly identified Tottenham’s Kevin Wimmer as the man to replace Virgil van Dijk…Paris Saint-Germain want to send Angel Di Maria to Barcelona, as well as £195m in order to close out their record-breaking deal for Neymar…Etienne Capoue’s Watford future is in doubt after the midfielder was involved in huge row with Marco Silva following the pre-season friendly defeat by Rangers.

Manchester City are prepared to pay Alexis Sanchez £320,000 per week after star tells fans he is ‘sick’ two days before he is due back with Arsenal…AC Milan, Chelsea and Manchester United target Andrea Belotti will not leave for less than £90m, claims Torino manager Sinisa Mihajlovic…Liverpool, Arsenal and Tottenham are all interested in signing Barcelona midfielder Rafinha this summer, according to reports in Spain…Arsenal are weighing up a summer move to sign Udinese midfielder Jakub Jankto, according to his agent…Juventus have valued winger Juan Cuadrado at £26.8m amid interest from Arsenal and Inter Milan…Marseille are refusing to give up on signing Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud…Antonio Conte has targeted a move for Inter Milan’s Italy international Antonio Candreva, who would provide competition for Victor Moses at wing-back and Pedro in attack…Manchester United have opened contract talks with Ander Herrera in a bid to fend off interest in the midfielder from Barcelona…Southampton hope to reintegrate Virgil van Dijk into first-team training next week, with new manager Mauricio Pellegrino preparing to again tell his captain that he will not be sold this summer…Scotland international Ross McCormack will not be joining Derby County this summer, according to club boss Gary Rowett.