Italian giants Juventus and Napoli are set for a battle to sign Tottenham Hotspur’s our-of-favour right-back Kieran Trippier.
The Daily Mirror has reported that new Juve boss Maurizio Sarri has identified Trippier as one of his first signings for the perennial Serie A champions. It is thought he was impressed by him when he was boss of Chelsea.
Napoli have previously been reported to be interested in the 28-year-old and are thought to have already opened talks with the player and his representatives.
Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino has indicated he would be prepared to sell Trippier for the right price – thought to be about £28 million – as he has cover at the position. French international Serge Aurier and promising home-grown player Kyle Walker-Peters are both vying for the right-back position.
Trippier could be tempted by a move to Italy. Both sides are in next season’s Champions League, although an extra pull to Juventus could be the presence of former Arsenal star Aaron Ramsey.
Leicester City defender Harry Maguire is set to complete an £80 million move to Manchester City this week, according to reports.
City’s rivals Manchester United has been thought to be in pole position to sign the 26-year-old but now their rivals are set to bag the England international having made a huge wage offer.
City have offered Maguire £280,000 per week – something he is believed to have said is too good to turn down, according to the Daily Mirror.
They have also reportedly agreed to Leicester’s £80 million valuation of him – something United were baulking at.
However, United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has reportedly not given up hope of signing Maguire and could come back in with another bid.
Leicester City are loathe to lose one of their star players, but a bid of £80 million would be hard to turn down. Especially so if the player has had his head turned.
City manager Pep Guardiola is thought to see Maguire as the successor to Vincent Kompany, who left the club at the end of last season. For Maguire, joining City would allow him to fulfil is ambition of playing Champions League football.
Championship side Leeds United are one of several clubs trying to sign Italian goalkeeping legend Gianluigi Buffon.
Buffon, 41, has left perennial French champions Paris St-Germain but is not yet ready to retire. He spent one season in the French capital and had the option to sign for another year but did not take up the option.
Now, several clubs have contacted Buffon, who spent 17 years between the sticks at Juventus, about a potential deal – which is likely to be his last before he finally hangs up his gloves, according to Italian newspaper the Corrirere Della Sera.
Leeds United are said to be one of the sides wanting him. They lost in the Championship play-off semifinals last season. But talismanic manager Marcelo Bielsa has agreed to stay on, and the chance to play under a legend may tempt Buffon.
The other clubs understood to be interested are Porto – who are looking to replace another goalkeeping legend in Iker Cassillas, who retired after suffering a heart attack. Fluminense are the other club interested.
European giants Real Madrid and Juventus are set for a summer battle to sign Paul Pogba from Manchester United.
Pogba recently said that after three years at United “it could be a good time to have a new challenge somewhere else.” This came after rumours that he wasn’t happy at United, despite having his best season on the pitch in terms of goal scoring.
This has alerted top clubs to his potential availability, and now bids may be incoming.
Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane is known to be a big fan of his countryman. Zidane is rebuilding the Madrid side this summer -he has already signed several players, including Eden Hazard – and Pogba could be a good fit in the midfield.
Meanwhile Pogba made his name at Juventus and a return to Turin would appeal to him. Maurizio Sarri has just taken over there and knows him from his time in the Premier League. The opportunity to play alongside Cristiano Ronaldo would also be a pull.
However, it will take a big money bid to get United to sell. At 27, Pogba is at the height of his career and United bosses will want to at least recoup the £89 million they paid Juventus for him three years ago. Previous reports have speculated on a fee of up to £120 million.
United could be willing to do business too. Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could use the money to bring in other players – depending on whether he wants to build the squad around Pogba or not.
Any deal could be done quickly – Solskjaer has said he wants all transfer business wrapped up before the start of pre-season training.
Spanish giants Barcelona and Real Madrid are both trying to sign Paris St-Germain forward Neymar this summer and could offer player-plus-cash deals.
Neymar has long been reported to be unhappy with life at PSG. On the pitch he has had success, winning successive Ligue Un titles, but his time there has been plagued with injury. They have also not won the Champions League – or even come close.
Now, it has been reported by Sport in Spain that Neymar has told PSG chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi that he wants to leave the club and return to Spain.
This adds fuel to existing rumours of Neymar’s return to Spain.
Barcelona have been linked with a £90 million plus ab unnamed player bid to try and tempt PSG into selling.
Meanwhile Real Madrid are also said to be plotting something similar. Spanish news outlet Mundo Deportivo has claimed that Real are preparing a £115.5 million bid as well as offering Gareth Bale or James Rodriguez as part of the deal.
However, they have already signed Eden Hazard from Chelsea for £88 million so whether they pursue a deal remains to be seen.
What also remains to be seen is whether PSG want to sell. They may not want to keep and unhappy player but in that case would certainly want to recoup their £198 million outlay on him. Whether they would take a player-plus-cash deal is also open to discussion – as indeed is whether the players reportedly involved would want to go.
Watch this space – this story could run all summer.</
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