Mauricio Pochettino has played down reports Tottenham are interested in signing Bordeaux’s in-demand Malcom after seeing north London rivals Arsenal distance themselves from a deal.
The winger is a reported target for Spurs, having hit seven goals in Ligue 1 this season, with Pochettino yet to make a signing in the January transfer window.
But despite Spurs struggling for creativity in Christian Eriksen’s absence during Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Southampton, the Argentine coach has denied a move for the Brazilian is imminent.
- Arsenal will have a ‘hard time’ signing Malcom, say Bordeaux
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- Arsenal pull out of race to sign Malcom in January
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“That is a rumour and I don’t want to speak about it,” Pochettino told Sky Sports when asked about 20-year-old Malcom.
“I am happy with our squad. We are open to quality players, but it is difficult in this transfer window.”
Harry Kane’s 99th Premier League goal cancelled out a Davinson Sanchez own-goal as Spurs struggled for cohesion at a sodden St Mary’s, losing ground in the race for Champions League qualification.
But after Kane missed a last-minute opportunity to snatch all three points, Pochettino said his side had done enough to win the game.
“I think it was an even game and a difficult game to play,” Pochettino added. “The pitch was in a difficult condition. It was tough. A battle. It was fair, the result.
“We struggled to play. It was in possession, we made mistakes which allowed them to play. To win the game we should do better and play better. It wasn’t great.
“We tried to be more aggressive in our offensive phase and to link better Kane and [Dele] Alli behind. This allowed us to be more aggressive in transition and use our full-backs going forward. We had a massive chance with Harry Kane at the end to win the game.
“We still have the possibility to fight [for the top four]. Southampton are in a relegation battle so it is not easy, they fight to survive. Every ball, they were aggressive. But it was our mistake to not win the game.”
Southampton are in the relegation zone, without a win in their last 10 Premier League matches, but Mauricio Pellegrino was buoyed by his team’s performance.
“I think we are on the right path,” Pellegrino told Sky Sports. “In the last four games we responded really well. Obviously this is the attitude we need to show in the next game [at home to Brighton and Hove Albion] – it’s massive for us.
“We knew this. In the second half they played with a diamond, one between the line and two strikers, they were dangerous. But we had space in wide areas and we had a couple of chances. They are an amazing team with great players. Most of the time we defended well.
“We have to be confident but we are not in the best moment so players might not want to take risks, this is part of football.
“For me every single game is an opportunity to improve. We have improved a lot and we have to continue in this way. In three or four weeks time everything can change. We have to be optimistic but we will continue to improve.”
Egypt FA chief calls for Salah in Real Madrid
The head of Egypt’s FA wants to see Liverpool star Mohamed Salah move to Real Madrid, claims the Sun .
According to the newspaper, Abo Rida asserted that the Merengue would make an offer for Salah over the summer and allegedly stated such a move would “be great for Egyptian football”.
Liverpool shift focus to Pulisic
After pulling out of the race for Thomas Lemar, Liverpool have turned their attention to U.S. international Christian Pulisic, according to the Daily Star.
The Reds moved away from Monaco’s Lemar due to his £100 million price tag, but they believe Pulisic has a similiar skill set.
Liverpool, who are owned by the U.S.-based Fenway Sports Group, would also like to add an American to their squad.
Liverpool will allow Sturridge exit
Liverpool will allow Daniel Sturridge to seek a new club in the January transfer window, reports Sky Sports .
The striker has fallen behind Roberto Firmino in the Reds’ pecking order, while Inter and Sevilla have both shown interest in a deal.
Kroos wants to work with Klopp
Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos has several offers on the table, reports Don Balon , with the German eager to work with Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool.
The highly rated playmaker could be among those made available in the summer as the Blancos seek to freshen up their ranks.
Sturridge scrap hotting up
Inter continue to lead the chase for Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge, but Gianluca Di Marzio reports that Roma are also keen on the England international.
Sturridge is a proven performer in need of game time and he could be offered a chance to head to the Italian capital if Edin Dzeko completes a proposed switch to Chelsea.
Klopp in no rush to spend Coutinho money
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says he’s not in a rush to spend the €160 million generated from the sale of Philippe Coutinho.
If a deal comes along that is right for the club then Klopp indicated he will consider it, but the German feels confident in the squad already at his disposal.
Read the full story on Goal.
Lemar sets heart on Barca
Monaco winger Thomas Lemar is ready to snub interest from Arsenal and Liverpool after setting his heart on a move to Barcelona, claims The Mirror .
The France international has been heavily linked with Premier League clubs since the summer of 2017, but is eager to open the next chapter in his career in La Liga.
Liverpool join Bale race
Liverpool have joined arch-rivals Manchester United in the battle to land Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale, according to Don Balon .
The Wales international has been heavily linked with a return to the Premier League after struggling for form and fitness at Santiago Bernabeu.
Jurgen Klopp has the funds available to make a move after offloading Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona and is prepared to spend over €100 million on Bale.
Arsenal star Alexis Sanchez has opted for Manchester United over Manchester City because the Red Devils are “miles bigger” than the runaway Premier League leaders, according to Paul Ince.
Chile international Sanchez – out of contract at the end of the season – is poised to join United having snubbed Pep Guardiola and City.
The 29-year-old forward had been tipped to swap Arsenal for City in a reunion with former Barcelona boss Guardiola, however, United hijacked their neighbour’s move, with some past players and pundits claiming Sanchez’s decision is based on money.
- Alexis Sanchez jets off to undergo Manchester United medical
- ‘It is his last big contract’ – Wenger suggests Sanchez is joining Manchester United for money
- Alexis in & Martial flying – Rashford risks becoming Man Utd’s odd man out
- Klopp mocks Arsenal over Alexis sale: Liverpool would never sell to a rival mid-season
However, former United midfielder Ince insisted City simply cannot compete with the history of their rivals – the 20-time English champions.
“Everyone is raving about City. But when it comes to the two clubs, Man United are miles bigger than City. Players would still prefer to go to them over Pep’s side – that’s a fact. Players won’t go to City because they think they’re a bigger, more historic club than United. Because they’re simply not,” Ince told Paddy Power.
“Some might get the quick satisfaction of winning the league this year, but those years of history, and the side that [Jose] Mourinho is building – players want to be a part of that.
“This signing only confirms that. Sanchez had the opportunity to go into a team where he could have won a trophy. But he didn’t, he chose to go to United because of everything they stand for and that says a lot about the size of the club.
“City have some unbelievable players, but winning the league this year doesn’t mean anything. They need to do that year upon year and collect trophies to compete with United. That’s the true test. They’re not serial winners. United are and that’s why players want to be there.
“With the Champions League around the corner, this is a huge boost. Sanchez hasn’t come to Old Trafford not to play. He’s come to show how good he is, on the top stage, which is Europe. He’s a special player and the sort that doesn’t come around that often, and I’d say United’s hopes of winning their fourth European trophy have just got a lot more likely.”
Ince – a two-time Premier League winner at Old Trafford – added: “We all presumed Sanchez would join Man City. There was all this talk about how desperate he was to be reunited with Pep Guardiola from their Barcelona days.
“Suddenly, Man United is the destination for him, and that is a massive statement from the club. He’s one of the best players in the Premier League, and they’ve had a lot of competition to sign him.
“This is their way of saying: ‘Don’t belittle us. We’re still the biggest club in the league and we can get who we want.’
“It seems United, City, Liverpool and Chelsea were all after him. Sanchez choosing United sends a big message to those clubs, especially Man City.”
Hazard scolds father for fuelling Real Madrid talk
Eden Hazard has admitted he scolded father Thierry over the latter’s claims that the Chelsea star was holding out for a Real Madrid move.
“I talked with him [to tell him off], no, no worries,” he joked to reporters, before underling his commitment to the Blues.
Read the full story here!
‘No chance’ of Vidal January move
Arturo Vidal says there is “no chance” of him leaving Bayern Munich in January as he wants to challenge for the Champions League this season.
The 30-year-old has been linked with a move to Chelsea despite head coach Jupp Heynckes’ insistence nobody would be sold during the transfer window.
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Conte admits possible Batshuayi exit
Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has admitted Michy Batshuayi could leave the club during the current transfer window.
The Belgian has attracted strong interest from Sevilla, although any move would appear to hinge on whether Chelsea manage to find a striker over the course of January.
Read the full story here!
Chelsea can still secure Crouch deal
Despite Stoke City manager Paul Lambert telling Chelsea that Peter Crouch is not for sale, a deal for the striker could still happen, reports The Independent .
Crouch is believed to be keen for the switch to happen, and if the right offer comes along and Stoke can find a replacement, the 36-year-old will be allowed to leave.
Chelsea turn to Burnley’s Barnes
Chelsea have turned to Burnley striker Ashley Barnes in their attempts to bolster their forward line, Goal understands.
The Blues have been linked with Andy Carroll, Edin Dzeko and Peter Crouch in recent days.
And now Antonio Conte’s side are interested in bringing Barnes – who has scored three Premier League goals this season – to Stamford Bridge.
Get the full story here!
Cole close to Championship return
Journeyman striker Carlton Cole is close to a move to the Championship, claims the Sun .
The former Chelsea man is currently training with League One’s AFC Wimbledon.
But he might step up a division after Hull City and Birmingham City targeted the forward in a bid to avoid relegation.
Chelsea target Richarlison posts cryptic message
Richarlison has sparked speculation over his future at Watford after posting a cryptic message on his Twitter account.
The Brazilian has been in sparkling form since moving to the Hornets in the summer, so much so that Chelsea are weighing up bringing him to Stamford Bridge at the end of the season.
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Chelsea close in on £44m double signing
Chelsea are closing in on the £44 million double signing of Edin Dzeko and Emerson Palmieri from Roma, claims the Daily Mail .
Roma feel the time is right to cash in on Dzeko, who will be 32 in March. The arrival of Emerson will allow the Blues to let Kenedy and Baba Rahman depart on loan.
Alexis pictured in Man Utd shirt after passing medical
A picture which allegedly shows Alexis Sanchez posing in a Manchester United shirt circulated after the Manchester Evening News assured he had passed a medical at the club.
MEN editor Samuel Luckhurst later posted a photo of the Chilean in his new kit on social media website Twitter.
The image suggest that Alexis will keep his No. 7 shirt upon leaving Arsenal, following in the footsteps of the likes of Bryan Robson, Eric Cantona and David Beckham.
Wenger: Alexis is leaving for money
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has claimed they had “no chance” of keeping Alexis Sanchez and suggested the forward is chasing money by joining Manchester United.
The 29-year-old is expected to finalise his move to Old Trafford in the next 48 hours after apparently undergoing a medical on Sunday, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan heading to the Gunners in a straight swap deal.
Read the full story here!
Real Madrid could go after De Gea
Manchester United will be worried after Kepa Arrizabalaga rejected Real Madrid , extending the La Liga club’s search for a new goalkeeper, claims the Mirror .
With the Athletic Bilbao star passing on Los Blancos, the Spanish giants could once again target Man Utd’s No.1 David De Gea.
De Gea has yet to sign a new deal with the Red Devils with one year remaining on his current contract.
Man City wanted Fred over Alexis
Manchester City pulled out of the race for Alexis Sanchez to focus on getting Fred instead, according to journalist Ian McGarry (via the Daily Star).
Manchester United are expected to finalise a deal for Alexis from Arsenal early this week after it appeared the Chilean star was heading to the Etihad Stadium.
Pep Guardiola is looking for a long-term replacement for Yaya Toure and believes Fred, at 24, could be the answer.
Mkhitaryan set for pay rise at Arsenal
Henrikh Mkhitaryan is set to see his wages go up when he completes his move from Manchester United to Arsenal, the Mirror reports.
The Armenia international is set to move to the Emirates in a straight swap with Alexis Sanchez and will earn slightly more than the £200,000 per week he gets at Old Trafford – plus the remainder of his United deal will be paid off.
Alexis & Mkhi in straight swap deal
Henrikh Mkhitaryan has agreed to join Arsenal and will leave Manchester United in a straight swap with Alexis Sanchez, reports BBC Sport .
The Red Devils have a deal in place with the Chilean forward and a lengthy transfer saga is about to be brought to a close.
It is expected that Mkhitaryan and Sanchez will trade places inside the next 48 hours, with the former now in London to finalise his move .
Real open Ronaldo exit door
Real Madrid have told Cristiano Ronaldo that he is free to negotiate a move away from the club this summer, according to Eurosport .
The Blancos are planning to overhaul their ranks following a difficult 2017-18 campaign and are prepared to move ageing stars out.
Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo falls into that category, with a return to Manchester United or a spell at Paris Saint-Germain mooted for the Portuguese superstar.
Pogba wants parity with Alexis
Paul Pogba will demand a new contract at Manchester United that will see him earn the same £400,000-a-week salary as Alexis Sanchez, reports The Mirror .
The Red Devils are close to tying up a lucrative deal for Arsenal’s wantaway forward, but his contract will make him the envy of those already at Old Trafford.