Paper Round: Luka Modric set for huge new contract
Luka Modric to stay at Real Madrid, Jack Grealish will be given a £30m release clause, Patrick Roberts is wanted abroad and Manchester United keep costs down.
Modric set for Real stay
Luka Modric has decided to stay at Real Madrid for at least one more season. Modric will sign a new contract to stay in the Spanish capital, and he will become the second-highest paid player at the club, on a par with Sergio Ramos and behind only Gareth Bale. The 32-year-old Croatia international had been linked with a move to Inter Milan following Cristiano Ronaldo’s sale to Juventus.
Luka ModricGetty Images
Paper Round’s view: Especially after losing Ronaldo, Real would be taking a risk to sell the exceptional Modric. While he is in his thirties, his game does not require exceptional pace and there are players around him who can provide runs ahead of him and they have a sturdy defence behind him. After an impressive World Cup, he could be the key to another Champions League success.
Grealish to be given buyout clause
Jack Grealish missed out on a deadline day move to Tottenham Hotspur as his current club Aston Villa would not accept a £25m bid. Instead, he will remain at Villa Park at least until January, and be given a new contract. The 22-year-old playmaker would then be allowed to leave if a club met his release clause, which is rumoured to be set at £30m.
Aston Villa's Jack Grealish and John Terry look dejected at the end of the match Action Images via Reuters/Carl RecineReuters
Paper Round’s view: With Villa’s financial future unclear but more stable since the injection of cash from new owners, they don’t have to panic sell their best players. Another few months might also tempt Grealish to stay if he and the club look like they are due to win promotion to the Premier League at the end of the current season. If not, then Spurs can swoop back in for a fair £30m figure.
Roberts set for another loan
Patrick Roberts could spend another season on loan. The 21-year-old England youth international has spent the last two seasons in Scotland with Celtic, learning from the inspirational Brendan Rodgers. However he almost joined Huddersfield on deadline day only to see no deal agreed. Girona, part of the Manchester City system, might take him on loan, but there is also interest from St Etienne, Bordeaux and Rennes.
Celtic’s Patrick Roberts celebrates scoring their second goal against AnderlechtReuters
Paper Round’s view: Life abroad is an excellent way for a player to develop, given the nature of the Premier League. There is a touch more patience, and at Girona especially, there might be some influence to make sure he gets game time. It is also an advantage for a player to go abroad to learn about the world, something that many young players don’t get the chance to do in England.
United don’t pay the real living wage
A pressure group called Manchester Citizens have been denied a meeting with Manchester United despite the club saying they were open to discussions about paying their staff, and those who work for them, the real living wage of £8.75 an hour. The group has described Manchester United as, ‘beyond arrogant,’ for failing to meet with them and discuss their wishes, and there has been criticism from Rogers Govender, the Dean of Manchester Cathedral.
Paper Round’s view: Given Ed Woodward won’t even listen to the man he appointed as manager when it comes to transfers, it is no surprise that he won’t listen to people asking him to spend money elsewhere. Manchester United make huge amounts of money and could pay this wage without it touching the bottom line, and it would be an easy PR victory. That Woodward is neither capable nor willing to do this, or buy his manager what he requests, demonstrates why United will struggle and continue to lose local fans.