Chelsea have turned their attentions to a Lazio star as Antonio Conte tries to beef up his defe...
Chelsea have turned their attentions to a Lazio star as Antonio Conte tries to beef up his defensive options, while Bastian Schweinsteiger will be the highest-profile casualty of a Manchester United clearout, according to Sunday’s papers.
Chelsea Target Lazio De Vrij
Chelsea have turned their attention to Lazio defender Stefan de Vrij after failing to complete a deal for Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli. The Dutch international is next on the Blues’ hit-list as their battle to land the big Napoli defender has stalled, reports the Sunday People.
Lazio will offload De Vrij, 24, for around £15million – and that presents better value than fellow centre-half Koulibaly, who is also wanted by Everton.
Chelsea, who have been in discussions with Napoli since the end of last season, are growing frustrated as the amount of cash being demanded for Seneral international Koulibaly, 25, has rocketed to over £45m. So De Vrij – who has worked his way back to full fitness following a knee injury – has come into contention and Lazio will not stand in Chelsea’s way should they make a bid for the player.
Man Utd Prepare To Clear Out Unwanted Stars
Bastian Schweinsteiger is set to be the most high-profile casualty of Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United clear-out this summer.
According to the Sunday Mirror, Germany skipper Schweinsteiger is facing a battle to save his United career, with new manager Mourinho closing in on the world record £100million capture of Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba.
Meanwhile, the Sunday Express claims the former Bayern Munich star, along with Memphis Depay, Marcos Rojo and possibly Juan Mata – despite Mourinho’s assurances – will be sold to the highest bidders.
Mourinho has admitted several of his current squad will be offloaded before the season gets under way next month, and the 31-year-old former Bayern Munich midfielder is set to head that exodus.
Injury-plagued Schweinsteiger made just 13 league appearances last season after a £14m move from Bundesliga giants Bayern and has featured only three times since the turn of the year — his last outing coming as a sub in the Manchester derby in March.
An ongoing knee issue brought a premature end to his season and the German – who recently married tennis star Ana Ivanovic – is not due to return to pre-season training until a week tomorrow after his team got to the semi-finals of Euro 2016.
That means Schweinsteiger is certain to miss the start of the season and it is understood Mourinho is willing to let him leave, with the Special One wanting a more dynamic squad and unwilling to carry players who cannot stay fit. Meanwhile, the Sun on Sunday reports United striker Will Keane is set to join Sunderland with new boss David Moyes lining up a £6.5million bid.
Pogba Close To United Switch
Manchester United hope to conclude a world record transfer for Paul Pogba by next week – but the deal could cost the club almost £130million. The Daily Mail claim that the fee will be a world-record £110m and that United will also pay over £18million to agent Mino Raiola.
Add in almost £300,000 in wages – including bonuses – and this is turning into a very expensive summer for Manchester United. Read More: Mendes & Raiola among top five ‘super agents’ making a mint
According to the Mail: “On Saturday, Juventus agreed to pay Napoli £78m for striker Gonzalo Higuain and there is a general acceptance from the Italians that, if United agree to pay the 20 per cent bonus due to Raiola and Pogba, which represents an additional £18.4m, they will allow the 23-year-old to return to Old Trafford.”
- Arsenal are lining up a £75m double deal that would bring Alexandre Lacazette and Riyad Mahrez to the Emirates (Sunday Mirror)
- Everton are weighing up a £12.5million bid for Porto defender Bruno Martins Indi with John Stones set to move to Manchester City (Sunday People) Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri is keen to sign former Tottenham and Manchester City defender Vedran Corluka (The People)
- Manchester United and Manchester City are keen on 19-year-old Brazilian striker Gabriel Jesus (Sunday Mirror) Arsenal right-back Hector Bellerin says the north London club is his “home” quashing speculation that he’s off to Manchester City (Sunday Mirror)
- Everton have agreed a £25m fee with Zenit St Petersburg for Axel Witsel and are waiting for the Belgium international to commit to their contract offer (Mail on Sunday)
- Manchester United will look to finalise a world record £110m transfer of Paul Pogba from Juventus in the next few days (Mail on Sunday)
- Manchester City are ready to start the bidding for John Stones this week with Everton expecting a £50m offer (Mail on Sunday) West Ham have placed an £18m price tag on defender Reece Oxford who is attracting interest from Manchester City and Manchester United (Mail on Sunday)
- Arsene Wenger has launched a staunch defence of Arsenal’s transfer policy and has vowed to spend big if the right chance arises (Mail on Sunday)
- Sam Allardyce will confirm that Wayne Rooney is staying as England captain with the FA wanting a friendly on September 1 as the new coach’s first game in charge – possibly against the Czech Republic (The Sun on Sunday)
- Everton forward Romelu Lukaku is still hopeful of completing a return to former club Chelsea (The Sun on Sunday)
- Joe Allen is set to hold talks with Stoke City manager Mark Hughes on Sunday as he closes in on a £13m move from Liverpool (Sunday Telegraph)
- Gokhan Inler is heading for the exit at Leicester after being left out of the squad flying to the United States (Sunday Telegraph) Swansea are ready to launch a bid to re-sign forward Wilfried Bony from Manchester City (Daily Star Sunday)
- Jermain Defoe is gearing up for a reunion with Sam Allardyce in an England shirt (Daily Star Sunday) Crystal Palace remain interested in signing striker Christian Benteke, 25, despite Liverpool wanting £33m (Croydon Advertiser)
- Leicester captain Wes Morgan insists Jamie Vardy was correct to snub Arsenal and told the striker to keep up the good work at the King Power Stadium (Sunday Express) Marseille winger Georges-Kevin N’Koudou is closing on a move to Tottenham (Independent on Sunday)
- Liverpool have ended their bid to sign Udinese midfielder Piotr Zielinski, 22, after the two clubs disagreed over his £10m price tag (Gazetta dello Sport) Middlesbrough are interested in signing Lille midfielder Ibrahim Amadou, 23 (L’Equipe)
- Burnley have two fresh injury worries after Ashley Barnes, 26, and Lukas Jutkiewicz, 27, limped off during their 4-1 pre-season victory over Bradford City (Lancashire Telegraph)