Klopp ready to spend
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is ready to dip into the January transfer market in order to strengthen his defensive options, according to the Mirror. The Liverpool chief has seen both Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk succumb to long-term injuries, leaving him with just Joel Matip and Fabinho (when he is fit). Klopp said on Friday: “That we look for solutions in the transfer market - that is clear. But in the moment we have the situation we have.”
Paper Round’s view: Liverpool’s finances are stretched, like most of the clubs in Europe. They spent relatively heavily on bringing in Thiago Alcantara and also Diogo Jota in the summer, and were unable to sell Xherdan Shaqiri. If the coronavirus pandemic looks to be on the way out in January then Liverpool may feel more confident about spending big to ease their injury problems.
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Juventus want to extend Morata stay
Juventus want to keep striker Alvaro Morata, who is on his second loan spell in Italy, but they do not want to meet Atletico Madrid’s £40 million asking price, according to the Sun. Instead, they plan to try to take the 28-year-old Spanish international forward on loan for another season, before attempting to drive down his transfer fee the year after next.
Paper Round’s view: Morata has done well so far this season in Italy, and it was with Juventus that he played perhaps the best football of his career. At 28 he has only a few years left to make a mark after never quite leaving a lasting impression at any of his clubs so far. If he is happy and scoring at Juventus then he has the chance of winning a few league titles.
Pogba may leave for nothing
The Daily Star reports that Manchester United’s midfielder Paul Pogba could leave the club for nothing. The 27-year-old French international has a contract that runs until 2022, and he could be prepared to play the next year and a half at Old Trafford in order to maintain control over where he moves next. He has lost his first team place under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Paper Round’s view: Pogba has done little for Manchester United and so they will not really be harmed by his absence from the squad. However, he is a marketable asset and cost the best part of £100 million, so Ed Woodward will be keen this next summer to tie him down to a new deal or ship him off. It is not clear whether any club would seriously entertain signing him given his poor form and high wages.
Alaba keen on Spain move
David Alaba looks likeliest to join Real Madrid if he leaves Bayern Munich, according to Spanish newspaper Marca. The defender has less than a year left on his current deal, and the 28-year-old Austrian international has not had his wage demands met by Bayern. Liverpool and Paris Saint-Germain are also interested but they look set to miss out on his signature.
Paper Round’s view: Alaba is one of the best defenders in the world, and while Sergio Ramos and Rafael Varane are exceptional players, Ramos in particular is close to the end of his career. Alaba can also play on the left of defence and would give cover to Marcelo, and can also operate in midfield. He would be a bargain if Real Madrid can afford his wages of 10 million euros a year.