Barcelona line up Willian Jose as emergency striker - Paper Round
Barcelona want Willian Jose, Paul Pogba stays away from Manchester United training, Harry Kane in fitness battle, and Roy Hodgon ready to stay at Crystal Palace.
Barcelona consider Willian Jose
Barcelona are interested in the Real Sociedad striker Willian Jose, according to Marca. The Spanish newspaper reports that the 28-year-old forward is one of a number of players under consideration by the current champions as they work through the possibility of an emergenc striker. Sociedad president Jokin Aperribay said: "I don't know if they'll call us, but they haven't done it yet. He is an important player for us and we would definitely miss him.
Paper Round’s view: Jose has eight goals in 22 appearances this season, so is certainly a player with an eye for a goal considering that record has come in a side that is currently in eight in La Liga. The Catalan club will need to gain an exemption from their football association in order to get dispensation to sign a player outside the transfer window.
Pogba absent from United getaway
The Daily Star believes that Paul Pogba has not been invited to link up with the rest of the Manchester United squad as they train in Marbella on their summer break. The newspaper reports that the 26-year-old midfielder has been told to stay away, and also suggests that Lautaro Martinez of Inter Milan will choose to join Inter Milan rather than move to Old Trafford.
Paper Round’s view: Any move for Martinez would have been a surprise because he is being chased by a host of Europe’s top clubs. United can no longer consider themselves in that bracket as they continue their playing decline. As for Pogba, the sooner his future is made clear the better, and that should be away from Manchester United in the long run.
Kane faces Euro 2020 fitness battle
The Daily Mail is concerned that Harry Kane will not be fully fit for Euro 2020 duty with England this summer. Following surgery on a ruptured hamstring tendon, Jose Mourinho has said he is considering Kane will be back for just the final two games of the Premier League season, but is not sure that the 26-year-old forward will definitely be back by then.
Paper Round’s view: England face a struggle as both Kane and Marcus Rashford deal with serious fitness setbacks ahead of the tournament this summer. Add to this the form of Raheem Sterling and Dele Alli, and Gareth Southgate will have his work cut out for him ahead of the international tournament, with a lack of sharpness a concern.
Hodgson denies transfer concerns
Crystal Palace has played down reports that he is concerned with the club’s lack of success in the transfer market. He has denied suggestions of a rift between himself and Palace chairman Steve Parish, and even told the press that he is in fact close to agreeing a new contract to remain at the club, who are currently six points clear of the relegation zone.
Paper Round’s view: Hodgson is 72, so one would imagine that if he resigns from the Palace job he might consider retirement. Looked at in that light, it would have to take a serious problem for him to give up at Palace, especially when he has in his sights another satisfactory season where they are likely to stay up with relatively little expenditure.