Sporting Lisbon want Bruno Fernandes to sign a new contract – but still might sell £63m rated midfielder in January

12 Sep

Sporting Libson want to tie down Bruno Fernandes to a new long-term deal – despite the fact they are still open to selling him in the January transfer window.

Fernandes, 25, attracted interest from Premier League duo Manchester United and Tottenham, as well as Spanish giants Real Madrid, but a summer move away from Portugal failed to materialise.

Sporting Lisbon want Bruno Fernandes to sign a new contract – but are not ruling out selling the highly rated midfielder
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Portuguese media outlet A Bola claim that Sporting officials are set to meet with the midfielder and his representatives over the weekend to discuss a new contract.

The report states that Primeria Liga side are prepared to offer him up to £1.8million-a-year should he agree to extend his current deal, which runs to the summer of 2022.

Although, that would still fall short of the reported £3.1m that Spurs were prepared to pay the Portugal international.

However, the report further claims that Sporting are still considering selling the highly-rated midfielder – but only for a whopping £63m.

The recent revelations are interesting, considering that United hierarchy have reportedly given Ole Gunnar Solskjaer the green light to sign a new midfielder in January.

The Manchester Evening News claim that the club will make funds available to the Norwegian as they seek a replacement for Marouane Fellaini or Ander Herrera following their recent departures, which has left the club particularly thin in central midfield.

 

 

When do the European transfer windows close? Paul Pogba, Neymar and many more could move this month

21 Aug

The Premier League transfer window may well be shut but that doesn’t mean some major deals won’t be done before the end of August.

The top-flight clubs agreed for the domestic market to end before the 2019/20 campaign got under way, meaning it was a short summer of spending in England.

Paul Pogba could leave Manchester United this month
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But a number of transfers could go through before September begins with European windows open until later.

The market in China has already closed so no players will be completing mega-money moves to the Far East but clubs across the continent can still buy.

The Scottish transfer window remains open as well.

PSG superstar Neymar is being heavily linked with a move back to Spain
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Paul Pogba and Alexis Sanchez are being heavily linked with leaving Manchester United, Tiemoue Bakayoko and Davide Zappacosta could depart Chelsea and there are question marks over the likes of Dejan Lovren, Mohamed Elneny and Mario Lemina among others.

There are also set to be some huge deals within Europe, the headline being Neymar’s much-discussed exit from Paris Saint-Germain.

So when do the major transfer windows close around the world and when can the Premier League sides finally rest easy?

China: July 1, 2019 – July 31, 2019

France: June 16, 2019 – September 2, 2019

Germany: July 1, 2019 – September 2, 2019

Italy: July 2, 2019 – August 23, 2019

Scotland: June 11, 2019 – September 2, 2019

Spain: July 1, 2019 – September 2, 2019

The winter transfer window in the Premier League will open on 1 January, 2020 and run until 31 January, 2020.

Liverpool news: Andy Robertson reveals Jordan Henderson and James Milner gave x-rated rant after Napoli thumping

29 Jul

The Liverpool squad were treated to an X-rated rant at Murrayfield after their woeful defeat to Napoli – by Jordan Henderson and James Milner.

The Reds’ pre-season winless run now stands at four games after they were comfortably beaten 3-0 by Carlo Ancelotti’s men in Edinburgh.

James Milner and Jordan Henderson gave a scathing team-talk to their Liverpool team-mates after the 3-0 defeat to Napoli
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And while Jurgen Klopp’s squad were all smiles as they came out to thank supporters for making the trip after the game, Henderson and Milner had some choice words as they gathered their team-mates together for a chat on the pitch.

Andy Robertson, a stand-out performer for the Reds last season, admitted their performance was nowhere near good enough against the Serie A outfit – revealing that the aforementioned duo let rip at the rest of the squad.

“It wasn’t good enough,” said Robertson. “We were miles off it. We were outplayed.

 

“At times we looked foolish by not pressing as a team.

“And we need to look at it and improve as our season starts in a week and it doesn’t get any harder than Man City.”

He added: “We need to be a hell of a lot better than this.

 

“Jordan Henderson and James Milner pulled us in for a huddle on the pitch and what was said cannot be repeated until after 9pm.”

Meanwhile, Klopp insists his side will be a ‘different animal’ by the time they face Premier League champions Manchester City in the Community Shield final next weekend.

Klopp’s men have one final pre-season encounter – against Lyon in Geneva on Wednesday evening – before their Wembley showdown with Pep Guardiola’s men on

August 4.

Manchester United transfer news: Sporting Lisbon captain Bruno Fernandes is NOT flying to the UK for a medical

28 Jul

Bruno Fernandes is NOT flying to England to have a medical with Manchester United.

The Sporting Lisbon captain is one of the most coveted players in world football after his 31-goal season in Portugal, with United frontrunners.

Bruno Fernandes is not flying to Manchester for medical, according to reports
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Reports over the weekend suggested Fernandes would be flying to the UK to undergo a medical ahead of a move.

However, the Daily Express claims this is not the case.

The Red Devils have not actually agreed a fee with Sporting for the Portugal international, meaning the race to complete the deal before the August 8 transfer deadline is very much so alive.

Despite this setback, boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is confident of adding more players this summer after splashing the cash on Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Daniel James.

The Portugal international is also the captain of Sporting Lisbon
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The United boss revealed: “As I’ve said and answered a few times, we’re working on one or two cases.

“But obviously my objective now when I’m here is we’ve got to get ready for the games and training sessions.

“And if I’ve got to travel somewhere I will. And you won’t be able to ask me.

“We’re working on putting a squad together that can compete.

“Of course we have some youngsters but we have loads of players that can play and loads of ways we can play.”

Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic was also supposedly a target, but the Red Devils have ruled out a move for the Serbia international.

Liverpool confirm Sadio Mane’s return date following involvement in Africa Cup of Nations with Senegal

22 Jul

Liverpool have revealed that Sadio Mane will return after their Community Shield clash against Manchester City.

They are involved in the fixture on August 4 as the Premier League runners-up as City won both the league and FA Cup.

Sadio Mane will return for Liverpool for the start of the Premier League season
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A number of Liverpool’s first team stars have been given an extended break because of their involvement in either the Africa Cup of Nations or the Copa America.

Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Alisson Becker will be rejoining the squad in the week leading up to the Community Shield clash.

Mane will not join up with Jurgen Klopp’s side until August 5.

This is because he was involved in Senegal’s run in the Africa Cup of Nations to the final on July 19, in which they were beaten 1-0 by Algeria.

Mane will have just a few days before the opening Premier League fixture against Norwich on August 9.

“He is in good shape,” Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com.

“Obviously they had a celebration in Senegal and I’m happy about that because it showed that they respect the competition and saw the second place as a success, which is nice.

“He is now on holiday, not the longest one – he will be back on August 5, after the Manchester City game. That means he had two weeks. There is four or five days to prepare for Norwich, 10 days for Chelsea [in the UEFA Super Cup].”

Braga 2019/20 kit: Fans horrified as Primeira Liga outfit release awful grey strip

2 Jul

The new Braga home, away and third jerseys were revealed by the Primeira Liga club and its new supplier Hummel on Tuesday – and it’s safe to say the third strip has caused a stir on social media.

The kits will be worn in the 2019/20 season and will be available to buy later this month.

Braga’s new home strip boasts the club’s trademark look of a red shirt with white sleeves and it is actually very pleasing on the eye.

With an Arsenal feel to it, Hummel’s chevrons run down the shoulders of the top in red to give it a stylish feel.

The away kit is similarly trendy. It has a very clean look, with an all white top detailed with with red logos accompanied by red shorts with a white trim.

Braga’s third kit has ruffled some feathers on social media
S.C. Braga
The Hummel kit is unusual to say the least
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It is the third kit, however, that is causing the most offence on social media.

Inspired by the armour of the troops of ancient Rome, the shirt is grey with an all-over graphic print and red logos.

Hummel combines the Braga 2019/20 third shirt with grey shorts and socks.

And fans on Twitter aren’t sure about the unusual design.

Bruno Fernandes transfer: Man United meet with Portugal star’s agent in London to discuss £70million deal

26 Jun

Manchester United are meeting with Bruno Fernandes’ agent in London on Wednesday to try and secure his £70million signing.

The Portugal international, 24, is in high on United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s transfer shortlist after an incredible season for club and country ended with Nations League success.

Fernandes helped Selecao win the inaugural Nations League with a 1-0 final defeat of the Netherlands
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Fernandes, who notched an incredible 32 goals and 18 assists for Sporting in 2018/19, is also being courted by United’s Premier League rivals Tottenham.

However, O Jogo say talks between United chiefs and Fernandes’ representative have been taking place on Wednesday as both parties attempt to thrash out an agreement for his transfer.

Solskjaer is set to spend big on new players this summer, with the Norwegian desperate to improve on a miserable end to last season, as United failed to qualify for the Champions League.

 

To date, the Red Devils have already made one signing, clinching a £15million deal for Wales winger Daniel James from Swansea.

They are also close to completing the £50million signing of Crystal Palace right-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka, with the England starlet set to put pen to paper on a contract worth £90,000-a-week.

Sevilla striker Wissam Ben Yedder is also wanted by Solskjaer as he hunts for a new centre-forward to replace Romelu Lukaku, who could be off to Internazionale of Milan.

The Red Devils are reportedly going to trigger Ben Yedder’s release clause
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The France striker scored 30 goals in all competitions last term for the LaLiga side, taking his total tally up to 70 in just three seasons since moving to Spain from Toulouse in his homeland.

Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar agrees Barcelona contract as odds slashed on Camp Nou return

26 Jun

Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar is on the verge of returning to Barcelona after verbally agreeing terms with his former club.

The Brazilian left Barca to join PSG in a world record £198million deal two years go, but he’s recently grown disillusioned with life in France.

Neymar has reportedly verbally agreed to return to Camp Nou after two years away
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Reports from Spanish outlet Sport claim the player has already agreed personal terms with Barca, willingly accepting a significant pay cut on a five-year deal to push the move through.

Neymar has reportedly told PSG owner Nasser Al-Khelaifi he does not want to stay with PSG any longer, and would prefer to ‘go back to my home, where I should never have left’.

The 27-year-old is said to have asked to leave as early as last summer, but a move elsewhere was denied by PSG.

In his two seasons with PSG Neymar has won Ligue 1 twice, but the French outfit have failed to make their mark on the Champions League despite dominating domestically.

Neymar’s return to Camp Nou is also being heavily backed in the betting markets, with the odds on him re-signing for the LaLiga champions this summer being drastically cut following a spate of bets on the move.

According to Oddschecker, just last month Neymar was 16/1 to join Barca this summer, but that’s been cut to 1/4 given the latest reports.

This means the bookies consider Neymar returning to Barcelona has an 80 per cent possibility of occurring.

Real Madrid are third favourites for the Brazil superstar at 25/1, while both Manchester clubs come next with United 50/1 and City 66/1 to secure his signature.

Neymar has grown disillusioned with life at PSG
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Oddschecker spokesperson Callum Wilson said: “Kylian Mbappe has an increasingly large number of purring Parisians eating out of the palm of his hand, and it’s looking like this might spell the end of the road for Neymar at PSG.

“There’s no doubting his superstar qualities, but one can’t help but think the Brazilian will return to Barcelona with his tail firmly tucked between his legs – and European failure his one lasting legacy in France.”

Manchester United transfer gossip: Five players Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could sign to keep Paul Pogba at Old Trafford

26 Jun

The transfer saga surrounding Manchester United star Paul Pogba threatens to rumble on throughout the entirety of the summer as speculation about the midfielder’s future intensifies.

After Jose Mourinho’s sacking in December, fans saw an upturn in the player’s form which coincided with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s arrival as interim boss.

Paul Pogba seems destined to leave Manchester United, so what can Ole Gunnar Solskjaer do to keep him?
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But results soon began to take a turn for the worse, as did the standard of the France international’s performances. His comments in the media did little to qualm the chaos brewing inside Old Trafford.

Describing a move to Real Madrid as a ‘dream’ went down like a lead balloon with supporters who had stuck by Pogba during his lowest ebbs throughout his second spell.

It seemed inevitable the 26-year-old would be heading to the Bernabeu to play for Zinedine Zidane, but then rumours of a move to former club Juventus began to gather pace.

Having missed out on the Champions League yet again, the Bianconeri are desperate to add a European crown to their trophy room.As you can see from this exclusive interview with leading French journalist Julien Laurens, a return to Turin is not beyond the realms of possibility.

 

Ed Woodward is loath to lose such a mercurial talent, even though certain members of the United dressing room want Pogba sold.

The club’s executive vice-chairman spent a world record £89million to bring Pogba back to Manchester, and believes selling such a prized asset would make the Red Devils look weak.

So how can Woodward work alongside Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to ensure Manchester United are not forced into flogging their record signing?

The Norwegian has made it abundantly clear he wants to sign younger players so as to nurture them into superstars, with Aaron Wan-Bissaka set to follow Daniel James to the club.

However, the ‘Baby-Faced Assassin’ may find the pressure from both the fans, the squad and the board to sign certified superstars grows from a faint murmur to a deafening crescendo.

Ed Woodward is under pressure to attract top talent to Old Trafford
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The transfer market is notoriously difficult to negotiate so (as a full disclaimer) talkSPORT.com is well aware pulling off even one of these transfers will be difficult enough, let alone five.

But the club have got to do something to convince Pogba Old Trafford should be where he plays his football next season, so why not with some retail therapy?

Scroll down to see potential superstars Solskajer could sign this summer.

Matthijs De Ligt (Ajax)

The 19-year-old is one of the most coveted players in the world alongside Paul Pogba
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Earlier this summer it seemed as though United had beaten both Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain to the signing of the Ajax captain.

Still only 19, De Ligt impressed last season with his aggression in the tackle and incredible composure and maturity.

But Juventus appear to be closing in on the signing of one of the most in-demand players in world football.

United’s defence has been cause for concern for years, shipping a record 54 goals – their highest in the Premier League era. Signing De Ligt would drastically improve their backline and send a message to the rest of the world.

Transfermarkt Value: £67million

Bruno Fernandes – Sporting Lisbon

Bruno Fernandes is a regular Portugal international and gets goals from midfield
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According to O Jogo, a Portuguese news outlet, United officials are meeting with Fernandes’ agent Miguel Pinho in London today.

The Sporting Lisbon midfielder scored 31 goals last season and has firmly established himself as a Portugal international – lifting the inaugural Nations League trophy at the end of the season.

Tottenham Hotspur are also interested in the 24-year-old, but are reluctant to meet Sporting’s £70million evaluation.

Another signing which would re-establish United as one of Europe’s most attractive sides, Fernandes could fill the void left by Ander Herrera, while his runs into the box could create space in behind for Pogba to exploit.

Transfermarkt Value: £50million

Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid)

Griezmann wants to leave Atletico this summer
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Although much of the talk surrounding Antoine Griezmann joining Barcelona, a deal is still not done yet.

As of July 1, the forward’s release clause will drop to £75million and the player is keen to leave the Wanda Metropolitano.

A huge fan of David Beckham, United could offer Alexis Sanchez as part of any potential deal to ensure the 28-year-old’s preferred number seven shirt is available.

Pogba and Griezmann have enjoyed success on the international stage together and would surely welcome the chance to work alongside one another on a regular basis at club level.

Transfermarkt Value: £75million

Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund)

Jadon Sancho created more assists than Lionel Messi last season
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By now, Sancho is an established name after his excellent season for Dortmund and England. The 19-year-old has taken his chance with the Bundesliga side.

A product of the Manchester City academy, Sancho left these shores in 2017 and has slowly developed into one of the most dangerous young talents in Europe.

Last season, he scored 12 goals and grabbed 14 assists in the German top-flight to prove he had made the transition from prospect to superstar seamlessly.

Not only would the winger fit in with Solskjaer’s transfer policy of signing promising young players, Pogba could revel in the extra responsibility of helping nurture the talented teen.

Transfermarkt Value: £100million

N’Golo Kante (Chelsea)

Kante and Pogba are good friends and work well on the pitch together
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While this transfer may seem as likely as United winning the Premier League next season, there is a method to the madness.

Kante’s rise to the top was astronomical, going from Ligue 2 to the European Championships in two years. Now a Premier League and World Cup winner, Kante has established himself as one of the best midfielders in the world.

But his last season at Stamford Bridge was a difficult one to say the least. Played in a more advanced role by Maurizio Sarri, Kante struggled to showcase his defensive nous and tenacious tackling which are trademarks of his normal game.

Although incoming boss Frank Lampard is a Chelsea legend, the France international may feel a move away may be the most beneficial option for his career. Playing alongside Pogba at the World Cup last year brought the best out of both men.

Transfermarkt Value: £90million

How could the team line up?

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side could be unstoppable next season
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Total cost of new signings: £382million

Manchester United transfer news: Five potential Mathijs De Ligt alternatives with Ajax captain ‘close’ to Paris Saint-Germain move

12 Jun

Manchester United’s pursuit of Matthis De Ligt looks set to finally be brought to an end with the defender set to join Paris Saint-Germain.

The Ajax captain, who is still only just 19, has emerged as one of the brightest young talents in world football and has even been courted by Barcelona.

The 19-year-old wonderkid will reportedly reject advances from Man United and Barcelona to join PSG
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But, according to reports, PSG have stolen a march on their European rivals and will wrap up De Ligt’s signature soon.

Last summer, Jose Mourinho tried and failed to bring a marquee centre-half to the club, with the likes of Giorgio Chiellini and Diego Godin linked.

But when the Atletico Madrid skipper used United’s interest as leverage, Mourinho and the club left negotiations with their tails tucked firmly between their legs.

In order to avoid such embarrassment this season, Ed Woodward and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will surely be looking to conclude their business early this time around.

So just who else could they get to shore up their defence instead?

talkSPORT.com has identified five potential targets for the Red Devils instead of Paris-bound De Ligt. Scroll down to see the possible candidates.

Harry Maguire (Leicester City)

The Leicester City defender was linked with a move to Old Trafford last summer as well
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Last summer, United were told to pay £75million for the England international after his heroics at the World Cup.

This time around, Solskjaer and Woodward may have to shell out £80million to make that happen.

Maguire has continued to improve since his move from Sheffield United in 2017 and is dangerous in both penalty boxes.

His marauding runs from a left centre-back position are the stuff of legend and doesn’t let his defensive game suffer, managing 152 clearances in the Premier League last season.

Ruben Dias (Benfica)

The 22-year-old is highly-rated and wanted by Real Madrid
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Real Madrid are tentatively looking to replace 33-year-old Sergio Ramos at centre-half and are reportedly looking at the Portugal international.

While Zinedine Zidane has already brought in Eder Militao from Porto, signing Dias would vastly improve their defence.

With De Ligt looking unlikely, United could steal a march on their European rivals and nab the 22-year-old from under Los Blancos’ noses.

Dias played both games in Portugal’s Nations League campaign, maintaining a 93 per cent pass accuracy and managed 11 recoveries in the final against the Netherlands.

Ibrahima Konate (RB Leipzig)

Konate sends Robert Lewandowski for a Kielbasa
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Last season, RB Leipzig conceded the fewest goals in the Bundesliga – thanks largely to the performances of Konate.

The Frenchman is lightning quick and strong in the air, meaning he would fit into a high-pressing style of play.

And his strongest attributes are not just physical either. The 20-year-old finished the season with a 92 per cent dribble completion rate in the Bundesliga, showing he is comfortable on the ball.

As the video below suggests, making a step up to the Premier League would not be a bridge too far, as Konate dominated Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski.

Dayot Upamecano (RB Leipzig)

Arsenal have also been linked with a move fro the 19-year-old
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This time last year, Upamecano was described by those in Germany as ‘the best young defender in world football’ ahead of De Ligt.

It would be incorrect to suggest the 20-year-old’s development has slowed, rather the Ajax captain has simply excelled that much.

“He loves defending, getting the ball off opponents,” France youth coach Jean-Claude Giuntini said of Upamecano prior to the FIFA U17 World Cup in 2015. “He’s still young and has room for improvement, but he has a great attitude, and a lot of determination.”

For a full profile on the youngster – also wanted by Arsenal – check out talkSPORT.com’s scout report here.

Issa Diop (West Ham United)

The French defender was imperious against United back in September
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At the London Stadium last season, Issa Diop bullied Romelu Lukaku, Mohamed Salah and Harry Kane – none of the Premier League sharp-shooters were able to get past the Hammers defender at home.

A £24million signing from Toulouse, Diop initially struggled on his debut at Arsenal as Manuel Pellegrini’s side shipped four.

However, his reading of the game and the aggression he possesses mean the 22-year-old has all the attributes to go right to the top.

He does have a tendency to dive in and leave himself exposed, but 165 duels won in the top-flight last season suggest he has the drive and ability to make up for it.