Mane now cheaper for Barca
According to a story in the Mirror, Barcelona are now able to sign Sadio Mane far cheaper than they would have previously. The 28-year-old Senegalese striker has been linked with a move to Real Madrid and Barcelona in the last couple of years, but Barcelona had a clause to abide by from the Philippe Coutinho transfer, which meant that they had to pay an additional £100 million for any players signed from the club.
Paper Round’s view: This story seems pretty much impossible to back up. While Liverpool might have wanted Barcelona to pay up extra in order to raid the club again, there would be no way to enforce it. Yes, Liverpool could have asked for an extra fee to do business with Barcelona again, but realistically there is no official yardstick to value players in the first place.
Mbappe or Neymar? PSG have to pick one contract to renew - Euro Papers
Liverpool keen on Schuurs
Perr Schuurs is the latest name in the frame to resolve Liverpool’s central defensive crisis, according to a report in the Sun. The 20-year-old Ajax defender has played just 27 games for the club in his career, and is on the cusp of breaking into the Dutch national side. It would reportedly cost £27 million to secure his signature, with Liverpool keen to add cover at the back.
Paper Round’s view: At just 20, Schuurs offers plenty of potential with the grounding of one of the best clubs for young talent. Liverpool definitely need cover with Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk on the injury list for potentially the rest of the season. If they were able to bring him in this January then it would be a chance to build their squad for the future.
Arteta turns down Eriksen
The Daily Star believes that Arsenal will turn down the chance to sign Christian Eriksen this January. The 28-year-old midfielder has struggled at Inter Milan, but instead of moving for him Mikel Arteta will allow Borussia Dortmund and PSG to contest his signature. Instead, Arteta will focus on defence as William Saliba struggles to impress, and David Luiz, Shkodran Mustafi and Sokratis are all out of contract.
Paper Round’s view: Eriksen’s downturn in form came well before he secured his move to Inter from Tottenham Hotspur so there is no guarantee he will ever get back to that level. It is too much of a risk to buy him on a permanent deal, and as the Star mention, the club need replacements in central defence despite their attacking struggles this season.
Isco to leave Real
Real Madrid forward Isco is ready to leave the club, according to Spanish newspaper Marca. The 28-year-old Spanish international has fallen down the pecking order under Zinedine Zidane, and while he was reluctant to leave in the summer he is now open to go. Real will make his exit work, but it remains to be seen if he will go on loan or on a permanent transfer.
Paper Round’s view: Isco is an excellent player who has lost his way a little, so a move would give him the chance to regain some momentum. Euro 2020 is on the horizon and if he were to secure a loan move to the Premier League and then make sure he performs on the world stage, then he could secure a permanent deal to see out his remaining prime years.