Man Utd deal for striker could ‘open the way’ for Darmian exit

Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic could play a role in Matteo Darmian’s exit from Manchester United, according to reports.

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The Croatian was last linked to the Red Devils back in November 2018 when he was one of three swap options suggested to United by Juve sporting director Fabio Paratici, plus a hefty cash adjustment, in order to bring Paul Pogba back to Turin.

That rumour didn’t come to fruition and that was the last we heard of any links until Tutto Mercato Web (via Sport Witness) claimed on Tuesday that Old Trafford could be Mandzukic‘s ‘eventual destination’.

It is rumoured that Maurizio Sarri will not require the 33-year-old’s services next season after being appointed the new Juventus boss.

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Any deal for Mandzukic, who has a year left on his contract in Turin, ‘could open the way’ for Darmian to join the Old Lady with his future at United uncertain.

The report adds that despite it being an ‘idea that could soon take shape,’ there have been no negotiations between any of the parties.

The rumour doesn’t seem to fit in with United’s transfer policy this summer, unless Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is looking to bring in an older head to balance out all the young, hungry signings. Big doubts on this one.


Ndombele in London to seal £55m Tottenham deal

Tottenham have moved closer to shattering their transfer record as Tanguy Ndombele has arrived in London to complete a move from Lyon, according to reports.

Ndombele has emerged as Mauricio Pochettino’s priority signing as the Argentinean looks to refresh a squad that lost the Champions League final to Liverpool earlier this month.

The Guardian claims that the two clubs ‘have agreed a fee of €62m (£55.45m) plus €10m in add-ons’ for Ndombele and he will now ‘undertake a medical’ at Spurs.

Tottenham‘s previous transfer record was the £42m fee paid to Dutch side Ajax for the services of Davinson Sanchez.

Agreeing personal terms with Ndombele is ‘not expected to be a problem’ and Spurs are ‘confident’ they will get the deal completed.

With apparent late interest from fellow Premier League side Manchester United, Mauricio Pochettino has ‘convinced him that the next step of his career would be best served at Spurs’.

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Man Utd increase offer to £70m for Maguire, ‘move ahead’ of City

Manchester United have ‘moved ahead’ of neighbours Manchester City in the race for Leicester City defender Harry Maguire after they made a new bid, according to reports.

The Daily Mirror recently claimed that United ‘are out of the running’ for Maguire after Leicester’s world-record demands. The Foxes wanted an initial £90m, plus £10m in add-ons, leaving United, who had valued him at £60m or so, ‘stunned’.

Despite that, Sky Sports claims that United have decided to up ‘their bid to £70m for the Leicester and England defender’.

The same outlet previously reported that Maguire ‘won’t attempt to force a transfer’ this summer but is ‘open to the idea’ of a move.

And Sky Sports adds that talks between United and the Foxes ‘have been ongoing for several weeks’ but ‘a deal is still thought to be some way from being agreed.’

The report hints that the Red Devils could have to come back with at least another bid as Leicester ‘would only consider a bid in excess of the £75m world-record fee paid by Liverpool for Virgil van Dijk.’


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Wolves show ‘fangs’ over €40m target amid Man Utd, Spurs links

Wolves are ready to ramp up their pursuit of Monaco defender Benoît Badiashile amid Manchester United and Tottenham speculation, according to reports.

The 18-year-old made 26 starts in all competitions last season for Monaco as they just avoided the drop in Ligue Un, including two starts in the Champions League.

L’Equipe (via Sport Witness) claims Wolves have their ‘fangs’ showing and are ready to beat off the competition to land Badiashile.

France Football previously reported on Monday that Spurs were ‘taking an interest’ in the centre-back, while the report in L’Equipe today credits United with interest.

Monaco ‘‘indirectly learned’ that United ‘could also position themselves’ in the race to sign the France under-19 international.

L’Equipe continue by saying that the interest from Wolves is ‘not a bluff’ – with Jorge Mendes heavily involved – and that Monaco president Oleg Petrov found out recently that the Premier League club are ‘willing to make an offer’.

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On the fee, the French publication adds: ‘The amount of the potential bid that AS Monaco management has been informed of has not filtered out, but considering the market for such young people, it can be estimated at around €40m.’


Lionesses ‘more hungry, more destined’ for WWC final – Bronze

Abbie McManus was the only player not involved as England trained in front of the media on Monday ahead of their Women’s World Cup semi-final against the United States.

Defender McManus sat out the session due to feeling unwell.

Phil Neville’s Lionesses take on holders the US on Tuesday evening at Lyon’s Groupama Stadium.

Lucy Bronze feels England have an edge over their fellow Women’s World Cup semi-finalists in that they are “more hungry” to reach a final.

The Lionesses face holders the United States at Lyon’s Groupama Stadium on Tuesday, before Euro 2017 champions Holland take on Sweden, who were runners-up at the 2016 Olympics, at the same venue in the other last-four game 24 hours later.

England were beaten in the semis of the 2015 World Cup and the Euros two years ago.

And right-back Bronze, who Neville says is the best player in the world, said: “We’ve had back-to-back semi-finals, which is an amazing feat for this team, but we’re short of that last step and we’ve still got that hunger.

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“And especially now – you look at the four teams left, we are the only team that hasn’t reached a final. The Olympics, the World Cup, the Euros – these other three teams have reached finals in recent years.

“So we have probably got that edge, where we are a little bit more hungry for it, we are maybe more destined and want to go to a final in that respect.”

Arsenal in ‘very advanced’ talks with Porto star – reports

Arsenal are reported to be in talks with attacker Yacine Brahimi.

The 29-year-old is a free agent from today following the expiry of his Porto contract and the Gunners are eyeing a move for the versatile Algeria international.

Sky Sports claims Arsenal have already held negotiations with Brahimi, who scored 13 goals and assisted nine more in 49 matches last term.

Reports elsewhere suggest the talks are at a ‘very advanced’ stage – though Brahimi’s demands could be a stumbling block.

The former PSG and Rennes star is said to be looking for a £3.5million signing-on fee which the Gunners are said to be reluctant to offer.

Unai Emery is understood to have only around £45million to spend this summer, though half of that fee may go on Celtic full-back Kieran Tierney.

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Leeds confirm two deals as they wait on Clarke and Costa

Leeds have completed a double loan signing with Manchester City midfielder Jack Harrison and Brighton defender Ben White joining on season-long deals.

Harrison, 22, spent last season at Elland Road and scored four goals in 42 appearances for Marcelo Bielsa’s side.

Leeds have an option to sign Harrison on a permanent deal at the end of the 2019-20 season.

White, who has signed a one-year contract extension at Brighton to extend his deal on the south coast until June 2022, has had previous loan spells at Newport and Peterborough.

Brighton Under-23s coach Simon Rusk told the club’s official website: “This is an exciting move for Ben and one that makes sense in his natural development.

“Ben will have to adapt once again, as he joins a new group of players and experiences an increased standard of quality and athleticism in the Championship.

“I’m delighted for Ben to experience playing at that level in front of bigger crowds, and we’ll be keeping a close eye on his progress at Elland Road.”

White made 42 league appearances at Newport during the 2016-17 campaign and played 16 games for Peterborough last season.

The 21-year-old has made two senior appearances for Brighton in the Carabao Cup.

Jack Clarke is expected to join White and Harrison at Elland Road next season despite his £8.5m move to Tottenham.

A surprise U-turn has seen Spurs change their mind on loaning Clarke back to Leeds as part of the deal, while the Daily Telegraph says Wolves winger Helder Costa will also complete a loan move to the Championship side on Monday.


Man United to make FAWSL debut against runners-up Man City

Manchester United will make their Women’s Super League debut against near neighbours Manchester City when the season begins in September.

Casey Stoney’s side won the Championship title by nine points in their inaugural campaign and will make their maiden top-flight appearance at City, who finished runners-up and won the SSE Women’s FA Cup and Continental League Cup last season.

Champions Arsenal are at home to beaten FA Cup finalists West Ham, while Champions League semi-finalists Chelsea start at home to WSL newcomers Tottenham.

The opening round of matches will be played on the weekend of September 7 and 8.

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Other opening-weekend matches see Birmingham host Everton, Bristol City at home to Brighton and Reading go to Liverpool.

“It’s a very exciting time for women’s football with the country currently swept up in the FIFA Women’s World Cup and the Lionesses performing brilliantly,” said Kelly Simmons, director of the women’s professional game.

“We’re looking forward to this increased interest carrying over into our domestic game next season and beyond.

“Opening weekend is packed full of great fixtures that are sure to set the tone for what promises to be the biggest and most exciting domestic season yet and we look forward to releasing the full fixture list next week.”

The remaining fixtures will be announced next Wednesday.


Spurs to loan Clarke back to Leeds after £8.5m transfer

Jack Clarke will return to Leeds United on loan once he completes his move to Tottenham on Monday, according to reports.

Reliable Leeds reporter Phil Hay, who has just left the Evening Post, has claimed on Twitter that the 18-year-old will be loaned by to the Whites for next season after completing a transfer.

Spurs are believed to have reached an agreement of £8.5million for Clarke, who made his breakthrough at Elland Road last season making 25 appearances.

Leeds are also close to the loan signings of Manchester City winger Jack Harrison, Brighton defender Ben White and Wolves’ Helder Costa.

The Evening Post claim Harrison, who spent last season on loan with United, is set to rejoin Marcelo Bielsa’s squad after undergoing a medical.

And White, 21. will have a medical at Thorp Arch today before signing from the south coast club.


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Man Utd to ‘accelerate’ £65m deal after Liverpool, Spurs decision

Manchester United are now reportedly ready to try to land Sporting Lisbon midfielder Bruno Fernandes after sealing the signing of Aaron Wan-Bissaka from Crystal Palace.

Wan-Bissaka completed his protracted £50m move from Crystal Palace on Saturday after United decided against pulling out of the deal.

That means there is now two in the door at Old Trafford this summer with the signing of Daniel James earlier this month and United are ready to press ahead.

And Portuguese publication Record (via Sport Witness) claims that United have ‘expressed their intention to accelerate’ a deal for Fernandes – who could cost in the region of £65million – now they have Wan-Bissaka finalised.

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The report adds that there could be news as early as next week on Fernandes‘ departure from Sporting with his agent, Miguel Pinho, visiting London recently for talks.

And in further news of a boost for United, ESPN say their rivals for Fernandes’ signature – including Manchester City, Liverpool and Tottenham – have ‘distanced themselves from a move’.