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United to beat Dortmund to Bellingham signature - Paper Round

United to beat Dortmund to Bellingham signature - Paper Round

18/03/2020 at 22:48Updated 19/03/2020 at 08:49

Manchester United want to sign Jude Bellingham, Arsenal target Emil Roback, teams prepare their players for a return, and Gordon Taylor continues to be paid.

United ready to win battle for Bellingham

Manchester United are prepared to outbid the competition in their pursuit of Birmingham City playmaker Jude Bellingham. The 16-year-old midfielder is also wanted by Borussia Dortmund, and United are ready to put together a package worth £30 million to sign him in the summer, when he would be offered a contract worth £100,000 a week, according to the Mirror.

Paper Round’s view: Manchester United need to rebuild immediately, so any spending on Bellingham should not be diverted away from their first-team plans. However, he is supposed to be an exceptional talent for a player so young, and in the long term it may save United money in order to splash out on him if he does become a first-team regular in the coming seasons.

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Arsenal fight Bayern for Roback

Arsenal are to fight it out with German club Bayern Munich over the signing of Emil Roback of Hammersby. The 16-year-old Swede has already met both clubs, with Hammarsby’s Sporting director saying: “We were contacted (by Bayern) and know about the interest. He has also met Arsenal. There’s a strong interest and there are more clubs as well. I understand the interest. He is a forward with a great physique, speed and already a skilled goalscorer.”

Paper Round’s view: Like Bellingham, if Roback is a huge talent then money should be found to bring him in as it represents a solid financial decision. However, Arsenal are like United in that they too need to buy quality that is able to compete immediately, and there is little indication that the club have the finances to pursue both strategies at the same time.

UK clubs send players VR headsets

In order to keep their players sharp ahead of an uncertain few months, where they may be isolated in their own homes for weeks or months; and when the Premier League restart date is neither decided nor even guaranteed to happen at all; the Daily Mail reports that some clubs are sending virtual-reality headsets to their players in order to help them maintain their sharpness.

Paper Round’s view: Premier League clubs are perhaps the richest set of sports teams in the world, rivalled only by some setups in America. These headsets have already been used for rehabilitation purposes, and so it makes sense that they could be amended in order to help maintain the reflexes of the players with a few crucial games probably yet to be played.

Gordon Taylor continues to earn big money

Professional Footballers’ Association chief executive Gordon Taylor continues to earn around £2 million, reports the Daily Mail. That figure has come under scrutiny despite the PFA’s leadership causing internal strife, following an investigation by the Charity Commission and an independent review by Sport Resolutions.

Paper Round’s view: Unless and until Taylor has been found to have done something that deserves punishment, then of course he should be paid for his work. Once the investigation is fairly completed, then it would be time to administer any punishments that seem to be justified, and it would not necessarily be fair to carry out the process in any other way.