?Tottenham striker Fernando Llorente looks set to leave the club this summer, as the club have decided against extending the Spaniard’s contract.
Llorente’s current deal expires at the end of this season and the 34-year-old would have hoped his key role in Tottenham’s progress to the Champions League final may earn him an extension, but it appears the final in Madrid may be his Spurs swansong.
As reported by the ?Daily Mirror, the Lilywhites had until Saturday to trigger the 12-month extension of Llorente’s contract but the club seem to have shown their striker the door, as they turn their attention to a younger back-up option to ?Harry Kane.
The Mirror report Celta Vigo’s Maxi Gomez has a potential target for ?Spurs, who scored 13 goals in La Liga this season, while clubs throughout Europe are showing interest in the outgoing Llorente.
?Milan, Roma, Valencia and Marseille are all said to be keen on the experienced striker, who has shown his ability on the European stage on multiple occasions this season.
It was Llorente’s goal at the Etihad Stadium that knocked ?Manchester City out of the Champions League, sending Spurs through to the last four, where the Spaniard came on at half time and played a key role in the remarkable second-half comeback against Ajax.
However, Llorente has struggled for game time under Mauricio Pochettino – he has made just seven Premier League starts since arriving in 2017 – and unless the club perform a U-turn after next month’s final against ?Liverpool, Llorente will be looking for a new club over the summer.
Spurs will take on the Reds in Madrid on June 1, as the north London club look to lift their first ever European Cup.
?Julian Brandt is set to undergo a medical with Borussia Dortmund in the coming days ahead of a €25m move from Bayer Leverkusen.
The German winger has been the subject of significant interest from a host of top clubs across Europe over the past few seasons after consistently impressing for Leverkusen. He enjoyed a decent 2018/19 campaign where he registered seven goals and 14 assists as Leverkusen secured a top four finish for the first time in three years.
According to German publication ?Bild, ?Borussia Dortmund have now activated Brandt’s €25m release clause and the transfer should be completed at some point this week after the 23-year-old has completed a medical.
Bild also claim that Brandt informed his teammates that he will be joining Dortmund as they were travelling to a vacation in Barcelona.
Brandt appears to be a direct replacement for Christian Pulisic, who has now left Dortmund after agreeing to join Chelsea at the beginning of the January transfer window.
Leverkusen manager Rudi Voller has previously suggested that Leverkusen’s top four finish may have been enough to convince Brandt to stay put, saying (via ?Goal): “We know exactly which clubs have knocked [for Brandt].
“Brandt has some requests, and in the next five, six or seven days there will be a decision. By reaching the Champions League, we hope we have a small or big chance [that he will stay].”
In other news, Dortmund have already completed the signing of ?Hoffenheim full-back Nico Schulz and remain the favourites to land Borussia Monchengaldbach winger Thorgan Hazard.
?Tottenham have entered negotiations with Barcelona for midfielder Andre Gomes and winger Malcom, Spanish newspaper Sport report.
Mauricio Pochettino is currently preparing for the biggest game of his managerial career, as Spurs take on Liverpool in next month’s Champions League final, but it looks like the Argentine boss is already plotting for next season.
According to ?Sport, ?Tottenham have begun talks with ?Barça for the services of ?Andre Gomes as well as Malcom, with the latter valued at at least €40m.
Gomes has already gained one season of Premier League experience after spending the current campaign on loan at ?Everton, making 29 appearances during his spell at Goodison Park, with the Euro 2016 winner ?reportedly closing in on a €30m transfer to Tottenham.
The Toffees’ loan deal for the Portuguese midfielder includes an option to buy, but Spurs’ offer is said to be higher and Gomes would favour a move to the Champions League finalists.
Meanwhile, Malcom only joined the Spanish champions last summer from French side Bordeaux but has struggled to gain the trust of Ernesto Valverde at the Camp Nou, where he made just six league starts in his debut season.
Pochettino famously failed to sign a single player during last summer’s transfer window, with Malcom’s compatriot Lucas Moura the last player to join the Lilywhites back in January 2018.
However, it looks like Spurs will be entering the market this time around as they look to build on another impressive season, which could see the north London side lift the Champions League trophy for the first time in their history next month.
?Arsenal managing director Vinai Venkatesham has indirectly told star duo Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mesut Ozil to make a decision on their futures – with the pair only having contracts until 2021.
Aubameyang has enjoyed an outstanding first full season at the Emirates Stadium after finishing as the Premier League’s joint top scorer, though Ozil has struggled to find a way into Unai Emery’s side.
Now, Venkatesham has insisted that the Gunners are willing to sell stars who have two years left on their contracts in a effort to avoid a repeat situation regarding midfielder Aaron Ramsey, who will join Serie A champions Juventus on a free transfer in the coming weeks.
“We need to make sure we are really disciplined,” Venkatesham said, as quoted by the Express.
“A good example of that is senior players that aren’t towards the end of their careers, we need to make sure that those players, when they’ve got two years left on their contract, we’re making the difficult decisions.
“We’re either renewing those players’ contracts, or we’re selling those players.
“So we’re going to have to be brave with those decisions along the way, because we can’t be in a situation where we are allowing players to walk out the door for free unless they are coming towards the end of their career.”
The managing directors comments come ahead of a huge summer for Arsenal where transfer funds are reportedly low, but that may depend on the result of their Europa League final against Chelsea next week in Baku – the result of which will decide if the north London club will be playing Champions League football next season.
29-year-old Aubameyang has been linked with a move to Real Madrid this summer, while Ozil believes that he will be staying at Arsenal for the remainder of his contract.
?Chelsea have been ordered to pay Antonio Conte £9m in compensation fees after the former Blues manager was fired last summer.
Conte was sacked from Chelsea after a turbulent season, which saw the Italian fall out with a number of players and executives at the club. With a year still left to run on his deal at Stamford Bridge, Conte’s lawyers subsequently pleaded the case that he was entitled to be paid for the final year of his deal until he accepted a new job.
Despite arguing that Conte’s behaviour in his final year had put him in breach of his contract, ?The Times are now reporting that Chelsea have lost the case after a Premier League manager’s arbitration tribunal ruled in favour of the manager.
The pay-off means that Chelsea have now forked out more than £90m in compensation fees to sacked managers since Roman Abramovich took over the club in 2003. That number could potentially rise further if the club decide to part ways with current manager Maurizio Sarri this summer.
Chelsea could theoretically take the case to the High Court, but the club are said to be unwilling to do so. They will not be challenging the decision of the tribunal, which marks the end of the feud from their perspective.
With the legal case now all-but settled, Conte is on the verge of returning to management and has been strongly linked with the top job at ?Juventus and ?Inter.
Juventus have already announced that they will be parting ways with Massimiliano Allegri this summer, while Luciano Spalletti is under increasing pressure at Inter.