Ashley ready to sell up
Newcastle United owner is ready to tell PCP representative Amanda Staveley that a sale of the club to the consortium she heads up could be feasible within the next month. A source has told The Sun that the Sports Direct owner thinks he will win his case to be allowed to sell the club for around £300m, ending his ownership which began in 2007.
Barcelona in talks for £35m Wolves winger Traore
Paper Round’s view: Newcastle’s time under Ashley has been a mess. He clearly did not grasp just how difficult and demanding Premier League survival can be, but once he had experience, he was one of the more capable owners. It is a shame that he had already fractured his relationship with the supporters by that point.
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Gareth Bale set to retire
Spanish newspaper Marca believes that Real Madrid may finally be able to get Gareth Bale off their books. He has one year left on his deal and had been expected to rekindle his career under returning manager Carlo Ancelotti. However the 31-year-old Wales international could now decide to retire from the sport after Euro 2020.
Paper Round’s view: It is strange how Bale played with such enthusiasm at Spurs, seemingly determined to become the best player he could be, and move to Real Madrid in the process. It isn’t certain, looking from the outside in, but it appears that years of troubles at Real have made him fall out of love with club football, which is a waste of a once exceptional talent.
Xavi keeps path to Barca open
The Mirror relays that Barcelona legend Xavi Hernandez has not completely blocked off a return to the Catalan club as manager, which current coach Ronald Koeman far from secure in the role after an inconsistent debut season. To that end, Xavi has turned down the chance to go to the World Cup with Brazil as one of Tite’s assistant coaches.
Paper Round’s view: Xavi’s relationship with Barcelona means that unless he puts a huge foot wrong in his managerial career, he will be given a chance at the Nou Camp soon enough. However, while a move to be Brazil’s assistant would allow him to be back in Qatar, offering minimal disruption to his current setup at Al Sadd, it offers little chance of career development.
United to kick off fanshare scheme
The Telegraph reports that Manchester United’s Joel Glazer has announced the chance for the club’s fans to buy shares that hold the same voting rights as the Glazer family do. Being able to exercise a degree of influence with an economic interest in the club has long been a demand of United’s fan groups since the takeover.
Paper Round’s view: The step in itself is not inherently wrong, and indeed should be welcomed with approval, however that approval should be limited. Given the huge number of shares retained by the Glazer family - as is their right - they will be giving up absolutely nothing of the effective control that has been at the heart of the problems at Old Trafford.
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Spanish Super Cup
‘Xavi effect’ starting to be seen at Barcelona, despite El Clasico defeat - Inside Europe