‘Madrid are linked to 50 players’ – Ronaldo laughs off Neymar rumours

Cristiano Ronaldo laughed off reports linking Neymar to Real Madrid , saying the La Liga giants were always at the centre of transfer speculation.

Neymar is linked with a switch to Madrid from Paris Saint-Germain in the close-season despite only joining the Ligue 1 club in a world-record move last year.

But Madrid are reportedly interested in numerous players and that has not gone unnoticed by Ronaldo.

The Portugal international said his team ended up making few signings after all the speculation.

“At Madrid there is continually talk of signings,” Ronaldo told El Chiringuito de Jugones .

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“I have been here eight years and they are always talking about 50 players that are going to come and in the end none come.

“In September a lot of players are going to come and then in the end those who reach the finals are always the same.”

Madrid are aiming to win a fourth Champions League in five seasons when they face Liverpool in the final Saturday.


Transfer news & rumours LIVE: Madrid favourites for Lewandowski

Madrid favourites for Lewandowski

Real Madrid are still considered the favourites to sign Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski, reports Evening Standard.

Chelsea have been linked with a move for the Poland international, who prefers to play in the Champions League next season.

With the Blues set for Europa League football in 2018-19, the 29-year-old striker is more likely to head to the Santiago Bernabeu than Stamford Bridge next season. 

Man Utd to push hard for Alex Sandro

Manchester United will make a big push to sign Juventus left-back Alex Sandro this summer, reports the Daily Mail.

Though Ashley Young performed well at left-back this season, Jose Mourinho is keen to add a specialist at the position and views the Brazilian as an ideal signing.

The 27-year-old is likely to cost Man Utd around £45 million (€51m/$60m).

Chelsea add Jokanovic to shortlist

Chelsea have added Fulham boss Slavisa Jokanovic to their managerial shortlist, reports Evening Standard.

The Blues are preparing for the exit of Antonio Conte, whose departure is set to be announced immanently after two seasons at the helm. 

Jokanovic has impressed Chelsea’s management after leading the Cottagers to the Championship play-off final while playing an entertaining brand of football on a tight budget. 

Man Utd not willing to sell Martial within PL

Manchester United are open to offers for Anthony Martial but do not wish to sell him to another Premier League side, reports Daily Mail.

The 22-year-old recently completed a frustrating season at Old Trafford that ended with him being left out of France’s World Cup squad. 

United are open to cashing in on the former Monaco man this summer but fear he could come back to haunt them if they sell to Chelsea or Tottenham, who are both interested. 

Could Salah join Real Madrid?

Real Madrid take on Liverpool in Saturday’s Champions League final, with many tipping them to sign the Reds’ biggest star in the off-season. 

Ahead of the showdown in Kiev, Goal‘s Ben Hayward examines whether a transfer could happen either this summer or in the future.

Read the feature right here on Goal!

Emery to have little say in Arsenal transfers

Incoming Arsenal manager Unai Emery has agreed to work within the club’s transfer structure, reports the Mirror

Chief executive Ivan Gazidis and head of football operations Raul Sanllehi will oversee a transfer-market effort led by head of recruitment Sven Mislintat and contract negotiator Huss Fahmy.

The structure gives Emery little input in transfer dealings, with the Spaniard set to focus mostly on matters taking place on the field. 

Juve to enter Milinkovic-Savic race

Juventus are set to join the race for coveted Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, according to Tuttosport.

The Serbia international has drawn interest from all over Europe with his displays, as Manchester United have been strongly linked.

The 23-year-old is expected to cost between €80 million (£70m/$94m) and €100m (£88m/$118m).

Arteta set for new City deal

Mikel Arteta is set to be handed a new contract at Manchester City after missing out on the Arsenal managerial job, reports The Telegraph.

Arteta was nearing a deal to take over for Arsene Wenger before a late turn of events saw Unai Emery given the position instead.

The Spaniard will now continue as Pep Guardiola’s assistant, with City management viewing the 36-year-old as a long-term successor to the former Barcelona and Bayern manager. 

Pellegrini to be handed £75m war chest

New West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini is set to be handed £75 million (€86m/$101m) in the transfer market to remake the side, reports the Mirror

The Hammers are looking to get younger, with Michail Antonio and Jordan Hugill set to be sold and James Collins already released. 

Newcastle’s Jamal Lascelles and Burnley’s James Tarkowski are two of the side’s biggest defensive targets for the summer, with West Ham also looking to upgrade their attack. 

Ancelotti in talks with Napoli

Carlo Ancelotti is in talks with Napoli to replace manager Maurizio Sarri, reports Sky Italia.

Sarri has hinted that he is set to depart the Serie A runners-up, and could be in line to replace Antonio Conte at the helm of Chelsea.

Ancelotti, who has managed Real Madrid, Chelsea, Milan and PSG among others, has been out of management since being sacked by Bayern Munich in September. 

Arsenal confident in landing Germany starlet

Arsenal feel they are in good position to sign Hamburg defender Josha Vagnoman, reports ESPN FC.

The 17-year-old has already made his Bundesliga debut and has drawn interest from the Gunners, Chelsea, Everton, Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig.

With former Dortmund scout Sven Mislintat now head of recruitment and Per Mertesacker set to begin as reserve team manager, Arsenal feel their German connections will give them a leg up in the race for the highly coveted Germany U-17 star. 

Brighton close to landing PSG teen

Brighton are closing in on the signing of 17-year-old centre-back Moussa Sissako from Paris Saint-Germain, reports The Sun.

Sissako has been offered a professional deal with PSG, but will instead head to the Amex Stadium on a four-year contract. 

The Seagulls landed Sissako ahead of competition from Wolves, RB Leipzig and Marseille.

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Adams to make RB Leipzig move

RB Leipzig are closing in on signing Tyler Adams from sister club New York Red Bulls, according to Kicker

The 19-year-old has impressed in Major League Soccer and has made his debut for the United States national team.

Adams, who can play full-back or central midfield, will join up with Leipzig at the conclusion of the MLS season. 


Could Salah join Real Madrid?

Mohamed Salah is in the spotlight. The Liverpool forward has been a revelation this season and is considered to be the main threat to Real Madrid’s hopes of winning a third straight Champions League crown this weekend.

Liverpool meet their opponents in Kiev on Saturday and at Real’s media open day on Tuesday, several of the players were asked about the Egypt forward. And although all answered diplomatically, stressing that the Reds are a far from a one-man team, they are well aware of the danger he can cause.

“His numbers have impressed me,” Toni Kroos said. “To be honest, I haven’t seen many of his matches, but he has played some great games in the Premier League and in the Champions League. He can create difficulties for us, so we will have to find solutions.”

Earlier, Zinedine Zidane was asked in a press conference if he would swap Cristiano Ronaldo for Salah. And his response, unsurprisingly, was negative. Four days before a Champions League final featuring the two players, however, he was hardly likely to answer any differently.

But talk of Salah to Real Madrid has already started following the Egyptian’s superb season at Anfield. And here, Goal takes a look at the situation and asks whether a transfer could happen either this summer or in future…

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Salah’s record-breaking season at Liverpool

Salah signed for Liverpool from Roma last summer for an initial €42 million fee which now looks like an absolute bargain after his superb season at Anfield.

In this, his debut campaign for the Reds, Salah finished as top scorer in the Premier League, with 32 goals in his 36 apparances as Liverpool claimed fourth place.

That saw the Egyptian win the Golden Boot, while he was also voted the PFA Player of the Year by his fellow professionals for his fine form in the league and in Europe, where he has netted 11 in 14 games to help the Reds to the Champions League final.

And it is not only his goals. Salah’s skills out on the wing, his dribbling ability, trickery and link-up play have added an extra dimension to Liverpool’s attack in 2017-18 and everyone at Anfield will hope he stays right where he is for as long as possible.

Mohamed Salah Liverpool golden boot Premier League

What are Real Madrid’s transfer plans this summer?

Real Madrid are set for a busy summer in the transfer market, with a number of players set to be brought in by Los Blancos regardless of what happens in the Champions League final on Saturday.

With Kiko Casilla set to depart, Real are in the market for a new goalkeeper either as understudy or to provide competition for Keylor Navas, while Los Blancos are also looking to bring in a right-back as cover for Dani Carvajal, with a central defender and a striker also priorities.

The departures of Alvaro Morata and Mariano last summer left Karim Benzema as the only senior centre-forward at the club, with only Borja Mayoral as back-up, and Madrid have struggled for goals at times this term – particularly in the first half of La Liga.

Zidane announced a while back that there will be changes this summer and that is understandable after Benzema’s indifferent season, Gareth Bale’s uncertain situation and the fact that Ronaldo is now 33.

If Bale leaves, Madrid would almost certainly bring in another forward and Neymar is likely to be their top target, with the Brazilian keen on forcing through a move to the Santiago Bernabeu this summer.

Gareth Bale Real Madrid 2017-18

Could Real Madrid bid for Salah?

Real Madrid, like every other club, have watched Salah’s success at Liverpool with interest. However, there are no current plans to bring in the 25-year-old.

If Bale leaves in the summer, that would free up a place in the forward line and the Welshman usually plays on the right for Real, which is also the Egyptian’s position.

However, Madrid are well aware that signing Salah would likely cost in excess of €200m and that fee is considered steep – even for Los Blancos.

Real would contemplate paying that sort of money for Neymar, a long-term obsession of president Florentino Perez, who would love to exploit the South American market by bringing in the Brazilian.

Currently, however, there are no plans to sign Salah after his one standout season with Liverpool and especially given the outlay it would require. As things stand, a summer bid is unlikely, although a frustrated pursuit of Neymar could make them think again.

Zinedine Zidane Real Madrid

Would Salah and Liverpool be open to a transfer?

Salah is happy at Liverpool and the club are understandably delighted with the player. Interviewed on the pitch at Anfield after the last game of the season, he was asked if he could repeat his feats again in 2018-19. “Yes, I will, don’t worry!” he replied.

There is a genuine belief from the player and his camp that at least one more season at Liverpool would be the best thing for him at this stage. He gets on very well with Jurgen Klopp, even if there is a bit of irritation from the manager about the ‘Salah obsession’ from the media, and he is a very popular figure in the dressing room.

The 25-year-old is close to Dejan Lovren and Sadio Mane in particular and he lives closer to Manchester than Liverpool, allowing him to escape some of the mania around his performances. He also values the work of his team-mates and asked Jordan Henderson along to collect his PFA award with him, in order to recognise that it is not an individual effort. 

Having moved around a fair bit in his career already, Salah is keen to stay with Liverpool for the foreseeable future and the club are set to improve his terms this summer. At Anfield, there is no current concern that he could be tempted away at this stage, as Luis Suarez and Philippe Coutinho were in recent seasons.

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After speculation over a move to Madrid surfaced in January, Salah tweeted: “Well, I have heard so many rumours that it doesn’t bother me anymore. They have treated me very well in Liverpool and at this moment, I belong to Liverpool and I am happy at Anfield.” 

In future, however, it is believed he would consider a transfer to Real, with Egypt coach Hector Cuper and former striker Ahmed Mido both saying they see the forward playing for Los Blancos one day.

Mohamed Salah Jurgen Klopp


Icardi’s agent reveals ‘big clubs’ willing to trigger €110m release clause

Mauro Icardi has a €110 million release clause at Inter but “big clubs” are willing to pay that price, claims the Argentine’s agent and wife Wanda Nara.

The 25-year-old striker has enjoyed another productive season in Italy, netting 29 times in Serie A to claim a share of the Capocannoniere award with Lazio’s Ciro Immobile.

His efforts have sparked talk of interest from afar, with the likes of Real Madrid, Manchester United, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich reported to be keen.

All three European superpowers boast the financial muscle required to get a deal done, even when taking into account a sizeable release clause which will only be active for a few weeks in June.

Nara told Radio Metro on the chances of a big-money deal being done: “There are some big clubs ready to pay the release clause, which is very high, but considering the figures that are circulating in football right now and the kind of player Mauro is, it’s not even that remarkable.

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“There are many clubs putting pressure on, but his priority is Inter. There will be a meeting with their director of sport and the priority as of today is to stay here.”

Icardi has previously admitted that he would be willing to move on if Inter opened themselves up to offers.

That is not the case at present, with a side that secured Champions League qualification with a fourth-place finish in 2017-18 hoping to put a contract extension in place with their prized asset.

Nara added: “It irritates me when people underestimate Mauro, as he is wanted by the three best teams in the world.

“We’ll see what he does with Inter, the situation is he’ll either sign a renewal or leave, but the priority is to remain here and resolve the issue before we can go on vacation.”

Mauro Icardi top clubs to meet release clause Wanda Nara

Ensuring Icardi stays at Inter is considered to be crucial to the Nerazzurri’s future plans by a former attacking favourite, with Brazilian superstar Ronaldo hoping to see Italy’s deadliest frontman remain at San Siro.

He told Gazzetta dello Sport: “Icardi? He focuses on scoring goals and that’s what he does. I think he knows that there’s always room for improvement. However, I’ll never understand people that criticise a striker who has scored 29 goals.

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“His future? Inter need to keep their best players to make a team for the Champions League.

“Reaching the Champions League means a lot, but it’s not everything. Reaching the fourth place has never been and will never be the main goal for Inter. Winning the Scudetto is not easy, but they must be at least in the race to win it next year.”

Icardi will have a free summer in which to discuss his future with current and potential future employers after being left out of Argentina’s squad for World Cup 2018.


Hamsik hints at Napoli exit amid China talk

Marek Hamsik has hinted that he could bring a record-breaking 11-year spell at Napoli to a close this summer, with his services being sought in China.

The 30-year-old midfielder is the latest high-profile figure to be linked with a move from Europe to Asia, with Barcelona icon Andres Iniesta currently exploring similar options.

Hamsik has shunned interest from afar in the past to remain loyal to Napoli, allowing him to take in 500 appearances and become the club’s all-time leading goalscorer.

He is, however, aware that he has reached a point in his career where a new challenge can be embraced, and he may be about to open himself up to offers.

Quizzed on his future plans by Pravda, Hamsik said: “I’m disappointed that we missed out on the title again. I’m sorry, because our great fans deserve this triumph, and I thank them for their great support.

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“I’ve spent all this time here, giving all my strength. Maybe now is the time when our paths will diverge. I’d like to try something new.”

Hamsik’s father, Richard, has also suggested that a new chapter could be opened this summer, with Chinese Super League sides having already expressed an interest.

He added: “The interest is serious but negotiations aren’t easy.

“For three years Marek has dismissed any idea of leaving, only focusing on winning the Scudetto with Napoli, but they’ve failed to do that again.

“The problem is that it’s not the main transfer window in China right now, that only happens in winter.

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“So the first question, therefore, is when he would leave for China. Clubs have different ideas, the Asian season is up and running and Chinese teams have limits on the number of foreigners in their squad.

“Another thing is that Marek still has a three-year contract in Naples, so it’s all in the hands of his agents and his employer.

“Right now I see it as being 60-40 in favour of his departure to China. Now Marek’s agent, Juraj Venglos, is going to talk to the president of the club.”