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LIVE Transfer Talk: Real slap ¬100m tag on Varane to fend off Man Utd, Juve

Alejandro Moreno breaks down the latest transfer rumours as the summer transfer window edges closer and closer.
Alejandro Moreno and Alexis Nunes predict the results of the most important matches of week 36 of the English Premier League.
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The transfer window for Europe’s biggest clubs is closed, but you can click here to review all the deals. Transfer Talk will continue to scour the world’s media and set correspondents loose to see what’s on the agenda for the summer.

TOP STORY: Madrid slap huge price tag on Varane

Real Madrid will be asking for €100 million before they consider selling defender Raphael Varane, who has been linked with moves to both Manchester United and Juventus, CalcioMercato understands

Madrid would ideally prefer not to sell their World Cup winner at all, hence the hefty asking price.

Manchester United have recently been linked with moves for Tottenham Hotspurs’ Christian Eriksen and Everton’s Richarlison as well, so spending a triple-digit figure on Varane too would seem like a tall order, even for the Red Devils.

Varane has played for Real Madrid since 2011, notching up more than 170 appearances for the La Liga side.

Raphael Varane, Real Madrid
Real Madrid want €100 million for World Cup winning defender Raphael Varane.


15.09 BST: Unai Emery has hinted Arsenal could replace the outgoing Aaron Ramsey with an academy player.

“There are also players coming through from the academy who are producing good performances and could progress,” he said. “We could replace him with a player from outside or with a player who is already here who can grow like he did himself.”

Ramsey has agreed to join Juventus on the free transfer in the summer.

14.15 BST: Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has said he would like to sign a forward player in the summer as the club needs “more strength in attack” next season.

Since returning to Bernabeu as manager in March, Zidane has spoken often about “changes” coming to the squad once their disappointing 2018-19 campaign ends — while talking openly of admiring Eden Hazard, Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Paul Pogba.

“The idea is to have more strength in attack next year,” Zidane said. “We will see what happens.”

13.18 BST: Catalonia-based Sport are reporting Lille winger Nicolas Pepe will announce his next destination in the next few weeks.

Pepe has excelled this season and is a transfer target for Barcelona, Bayern Munich and several clubs in the Premier League.

12.26 BST: Napoli boss Carlo Ancelotti has said he will not stand in the way of any player who wishes to leave the club in the summer.

Lorenzo Insigne, Kalidou Koulibaly and midfielder Allan have been linked with moves away.

11.30 BST: Paul Scholes is the latest Manchester United legend to be linked with a possible return to the club, according to Metro.

The paper reports that Scholes, 44, is being targeted by the club for talks over an as-yet-unspecified role on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s staff.

United have been looking to appoint a technical director, with current first-team coach Mike Phelan one of the names linked to the newly-created role.

Former United midfielder Darren Fletcher is also reportedly in the frame for a return to Old Trafford, where a major overhaul of the squad is expected this summer.

10.25 BST: Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez insists that he will do what he can to keep in-form striker Ayoze Perez at the club this summer.

Perez, 25, has scored four goals in his last two games, most recently the hat trick against Southampton that confirmed the Magpies’ Premier League status for another rseason.

In all, the former Tenerife forward has nine goals in his last 15 games, leading to speculation that clubs in his native Spain may want to bring him back to La Liga.

Benitez said ahead of Saturday’s game at relegation battlers Brighton: “Yes, he is an important player for us.

“I do not see any problem now. Finish the season, see what happens and if someone comes for this player or that, it is very normal when players are doing well. If someone comes, deal with that.”

09.30 BST: Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar has said he admires Eden Hazard and would like to play with the Chelsea forward some day.

Neymar has shared the pitch with some of the world’s top players in his career — a list that includes Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Kylian Mbappe.

However, when speaking to Fox Sports Brazil on Friday, the Brazil international who, like Hazard has been constantly linked to Real Madrid, said the Belgium international is another he’s hoping to pair with in the future.

“I’d like to play with [Eden] Hazard. He’s a special player. He plays a little bit like me. I’d like to play with him. I think we would give a lot of trouble [to the other team],” the 27-year-old said.

PAPER TALK (by Steve Wright): Rodgers could make Tielemans record signing

Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers has suggested that the Foxes could sign on-loan midfielder Youri Tielemans, but his parent club Monaco would be charging £40 million for the deal, according to The Mirror

That fee would make Tielemans Leicester’s record signing — a label currently attached to Islam Slimani — when he arrived at King Power Stadium for £29 million in 2016.

On breaking the transfer record this summer, Rodgers said: “The money is going up, absolutely. We shall see. As you know, the numbers go up each year. You pay for quality. The notion has been to bring in a talent and develop them. There is a lot of work going on and a weekly meeting in terms of recruitment.

“There is daily dialogue in terms of players. It is never easy when you are trying to bring in players to improve the squad. It is always complex but there is a lot of great work by the guys going on behind the scenes.”

Chelsea to call Cech mate?

Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech could be making a surprise return to Stamford Bridge, if The Telegraph’s reports linking him with a move back to Chelsea are to be believed. 

Cech’s contract with the Gunners expires in just a few weeks, and back in January the Czech shot-stopper announced he would be hanging up his gloves at the end of the season.

However, Chelsea are confident that they can bring him immediately out of retirement for a homecoming at Stamford Bridge, where Cech spent 11 years and won 13 trophies while making a name for himself in the Premier League.

Should Cech retain his desire to retire from playing football professionally, the report suggests that Chelsea could offer him a role as a technical director at the club.

Rabiot availability takes another turn

Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Adrien Rabiot‘s next destination may be in the Premier League, after Real Madrid withdrew their interest in the Frenchman, according to reports from AS

Rabiot hasn’t played for his Ligue 1 club since December last year, and with his contract expiring at the end of the season, it’s understood that Liverpool, Manchester United and Arsenal are all keeping an eye on him.

Madrid’s reasoning for backing down from the saga was that Zinedine Zidane reportedly wasn’t happy with Rabiot’s huge wage demands, while Zidane may also have his head turned by Manchester United’s Paul Pogba and Chelsea’s N’Golo Kante, who play similar positions.


– Marco Silva would consider offers for Morgan Schneiderlin, James McCarthy, Brendan Galloway, Cenk Tosun, and Theo Walcott as Everton prepare a summer clear-out, The Mirror reports. He said: “It’s really tough. And of course we realise the number of players we have under current contract, the wages and everything we must do.”

RMC Sport reports that Ander Herrera‘s move to Paris Saint-Germain is all but complete, as the two clubs have agreed on a deal for the Spanish midfielder. Herrera’s former club Athletic Bilbao had reportedly shown interest too, but were too late to compete with PSG.

EltasZone Sportswriters, Sports Analysts, Opinion columnists, editorials and op-eds. Analysis from The Zone Team
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