Footy Extras

ESPN pundit tells €80m-rated Man Utd star to reject European giants switch

Manchester United star Marcus Rashford has been backed to reject a possible big-money switch to Barcelona in order to stay at the Red Devils, despite crashing out of the UEFA Champions League to the Catalan heavyweights.

That is the view of ESPN’s Alejandro Moreno, who believes Marcus need only look at his recent form as proof that Marcus should stay.

The young striker is enjoying his best campaign to date in the Premier League, having scored 10 goals in 28 games, so far.

Marcus’ form, and uncertainty regarding his future has led to the player catching the eye of several clubs throughout Europe.

Most specifically, claims have connected him to a £100 million move to Barca, who are apparently interested in adding a new young forward to their squad.

Man Utd ready to pay €36m for Serie A star as Red Devils aim to bolster defence

Manchester United are reportedly thinking about a €36m summer swoop to land Greece international Kostas Manolas from AS Roma.

According to the Rome edition of Leggo, the Red Devils have turned their attention towards Roma star in their bid to land a centre-hlf in the summer transfer market.

The Premier League club though, will have to match his €36 million exit clause to secure the signature of the player from Serie A outfit.

The defender has come a long way since the star joined AS Roma from Olympiacos in the summer window of 2014.

Nearly five seasons later, the 27-year-old star has gone on to prove himself as one of the best centre-backs in Italy’s top tier, a league which is usually hailed for producing defensive beasts.

But, with AS Roma currently outside the Top 4, there is a chance that the club will miss out on featuring in the UEFA Champions League next campaign.

And, failure to qualify for Europe’s top competition could have serious outcomes, as far as player exits are concerned.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are hoping to take advantage of such an eventuality.

The defence has been the main weak point for the club over the course of this campaign, with Victor Lindelof the only centre-back who has remained consistent during the campaign.

While English star Chris Smalling has been solid lately, the player is known to have spurts of instability in him.

The same goes for Phil Jones and Eric Bailly, while Argentine star Marcos Rojo has become an unreliable person for Manchester United because of his tryst with injuries in the last few campaigns.

To that end, it’s understandable why Manchester United are eager to land a centre-back in the summer transfer market.

Man Utd dealt massive blow in their pursuit of most expensive UCL giants signing

Barcelona owner Josep Maria Bartomeu is adamant that Brazilian midfielder Philippe Coutinho won’t be departing the Nou Camp this summer transfer window in spite of rumoured interest from Manchester United and their league rivals Chelsea.

Coutinho joined Blaugrana from Liverpool for an eye-watering £142 million in January market last year but the 26-year-old star has not had the same kind of effect as he had throughout his time with Anfield outfit, resulting in speculation of a transfer away.

Josep, however, has made it clear Philippe is part of coach Ernesto Valverde’s plans – unless a club activates the midfielder’s exit clause, reported to be a staggering £355 million.

Speaking to a Spanish television station TVE, the chairman said: “Coutinho is an excellent player and he has the coach’s confidence.

“He has a contract with us and he will remain at the team, unless they (another club) meet his release clause.”

The president has also rejected reports that Blaugrana will move to bring Brazilian superstar Neymar back to the Camp Nou less than two years after he joined Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint Germain for a world record sum of £200m.

Barcelona used the money to purchase France international Ousmane Dembele from Bundesliga title chasers Borussia Dortmund, with Bartomeu hailing the forward.

He added: “It’s not possible for Neymar to come to Barcelona as we have another sporting project with Dembele and Coutinho. We are happy with what we have.”

It will be a major boost for Manchester United as the Red Devils linked with a sensational move for No.10 winger throughout the 2018/19 season as well.

However, it will be difficult to prise him away from the Paris-based heavyweights in the summer transfer window as the club board to do business with any interested parties.

Premier League giants remain frontrunners to strike shock deal for Man Utd defensive target

Arsenal are reportedly in pole position to land Barcelona star Samuel Umtiti – but Manchester United remain interested in the player.

The French star has been connected with a move to Old Trafford in the latest seasons after making an impression at the Camp Nou.

However, more recently, the Gunners entered the hunt after Unai Emery publicly praised Samuel in an interview.

And according to recent reports in Italy, Arsenal are at the front of the queue when it comes to sealing a summer deal, in spite of other interest.

TuttoMercatoWeb say that AS Roma are eyeing Samuel should Greek defender Kostas Manolas depart the club in the coming months.

But despite the Italian club’s interest, Gunners remain favourites to sign the 25-year-old former Lyon ace, claims the publication.

Samuel has been a long-term target for Red Devils, however, and is expected to be on Norwegian manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s shortlist as he aims to overhaul the defence in the near future.

Reports recently stated Catalan chiefs are not happy with the Frenchman because of the amount of time it took for Frenchman to sign a new deal and his ‘flirtation’ with Manchester United.

Blaugrana had been trying to tie him down to a fresh contract due to the low buy-out clause.

And the club finally succeeded the previous summer after the 2018 FIFA World Cup winner returned to Catalonia for the start of the new campaign.

Speaking recently, president Josep Maria Bartomeu discussed his player’s long-term future.

“He renewed before the World Cup; he has four years left on his contract and there is no Umtiti issue,” Blaugrana chairman said.

Man Utd reportedly set their sights on AS Roma prized asset valued at €50m

Ever since Italian prodigy, Nicolo Zaniolo broke onto the scene this campaign with AS Roma, some interesting stories have been covered surrounding his long-term future.

At first it was Unai Emery’s Arsenal who had travelled to monitor Cengiz Under, only to return to North London impressed with the talented Italian.

Then, came Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City, who have been a central point in the stories, especially since Nicolo’s value has skyrocketed to €50 million, but football fans have never had Manchester United, until now.

An Italian newspaper Corriere dello Sport are mentioning Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side as a potential destination for Giallorossi prized asset

Their inclusion in the list of teams comes alongside Bayern Munich and Juventus, two other long-time suitors who have been placed next to the CItizens for months now.

Often fielded as a playmaker, especially when his teammate Under plays, the youngster does like to drift wide to the right-flank side to then cut onto his left foot and creating many opportunities.

With Manchester United needing someone down their right wing, this make some sense, even if the stars they have been connected with suggesting more direct players: Hirving Lozano or Nicolas Pepe are their preference going forward.

Regardless of all this, it will come as a surprise if AS Roma were to sell Nicolo in the summer, apparently preferring to offload the likes of Edin Dzeko and Cengiz Under instead of young Italy international in spite of the money they could receive from the sale of him.

Ligue 1 club receive huge offer from Serie A giants for star forward linked with Man Utd

Inter Milan are willing to break the bank to pip Manchester United to the landing of LOSC Lille star Nicolas Pepe this summer.

According to the latest report from France Football, as quoted by L’Equipe, the Serie A heavyweights have submitted a €60 million bid for the Ivorian star, who has been in impressive form this season.

Pepe has proved himself as the talisman of Christophe Galtier’s LOSC Lille side and leads the way as his side’s top goalscorer this season.

The 23-year-old star has made 32 matches in Ligue 1 and has frequently been producing. Nicolas has found the back of the net on 19 times, also contributing with 13 assists for other Lille players.

Nicolas added to his tally for the campaign on Sunday night as Les Dogues turned in an outstanding performance against Thomas Tuchel’s Paris Saint-Germain, coming out on top with a 5-1 victory.

Inter Milan appear intent on signing the winger, but the club could yet face heavy competition from somewhere else. PSG and Bayern remain keen, according to the report, while Arsenal and Manchester United are also interested.

Meanwhile, the Red Devils and the Gunners will do battle in summer for the signing of Ajax star David Neres, according to reports.

The de Joden prodigy has enjoyed a fantastic season, scoring in the UCL against Juventus and Real Madrid. Just the previous month, he became a full Brazil international and his displays are earning him a lot of admirers.

According to The Sun, the 22-year-old star is rated at £45 million by the Dutch outfit, with Arsenal and Manchester United prepared to go head-to-head for his services.

Not Cavani or Pepe: Man Utd reportedly pursuing Ligue 1 centre-forward

Manchester United are keeping a close eye on Lyon striker Moussa Dembele and are thinking about a summer swoop for the Arsenal target, reports say.

According to a British tabloid newspaper the Sun, the Red Devils are interested in the former Celtic player.

Manchester United are reportedly tracking the Lyon star ahead of the summer transfer market as they intend to reinforce the attack. Moussa is also on the radar of the Red Devils’ rivals Arsenal.

The player was formerly a part of Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain but found success first at EPL club Fulham. The French star though didn’t stick with the Cottagers for long and chose to move across to Scotland, signing for Celtic. Dembele ruled the Scottish top division and his 2016-17 season was what brought the star much fanfare and interest from elite clubs.

Moussa chose to stay the year after at the club and had a wildly successful campaign. But, the start of the 2018-19 season saw Dembele being snapped up by Ligue 1 side Lyon. Returning to France, this time as a senior-team star, he has had a decent campaign by a striker’s standards.

The 22-year-old star has 20 goals thus far this season and has a return of 12 goals and five assists in Ligue 1. With the campaign drawing towards a close and the summer transfer market approaching, Arsenal and Manchester United are both tracking the player.

Arsenal have Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in their forward line. It could be intriguing as to why manager Unai Emery would want to add another natural striker to the squad, given the Spaniard will be provided with a tight kitty to splurge on essential additions.

As for Manchester United, the report claims that Romelu Lukaku’s future is up in the air and the club may have to replace the Belgian star in the squad in the summer market.

Man Utd once again linked with 24-year-old Serbia international

Italian media outlet Sempremilan has reported that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Manchester United have rekindled their interest in Lazio star Sergej Milinkovic-Savic. The 24-year-old midfielder has struggled to rediscover the form that caught European top clubs’ eyes the previous season.

He finished last campaign with impressive numbers, contributing to 23 goals from 48 matches in all competitions. It saw Real Madrid, Barcelona and Manchester United chase after Serbia international, over the summer transfer window, but nothing ever materialized.

He instead stayed at Biancocelesti, signing a fresh deal with the Italian club. However, Sergej has struggled to make a similar effect this campaign, contributing to just eight goals in all competitions.

Paul Pogba has been heavily connected with a move to European giants Real Madrid, amidst reports that he is unhappy with coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. This will leave Manchester United with a gaping hole in their midfield, but it is one that Sergej can fill effectively.

A lot like Frenchman in many ways, the Serbian player is an imposing figure in the middle of the pitch, standing tall at 6ft 4in. Talented with great technique, he can play as a number 10 or as a number 8.

Sergej’s rare combination of physicality and athleticism makes him an unstoppable force when he is in full flow. He averages 1.3 tackles and 1.5 key passes per match. Sergej also has a great shot from range, much like Paul.

The previous season, when the former Genk midfielder was at his very best, the highly-rated midfielder averaged 1.7 key passes, 1.5 tackles and 2.3 shots.