United have no chance of Haaland
Manchester United reportedly have no chance of signing Borussia Dortmund’s striker Erling Haaland. The 21-year-old Norwegian striker has clocked that United are well behind Manchester City and Real Madrid on the pitch, and while United are willing to match any financial package on offer, that is not good enough. Spanish newspaper Marca reports that City continue to lead the race.
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Paper Round’s view: For just 75 million euros both City and Real are chasing the best striker in Europe behind Kylian Mbappe, so he will be able to demand huge wages. Given Real and City are both well funded, that won’t be a deciding factor as they can stump up whatever is needed, but it should be a warning to United that they were now, without question, second rate.
Ten Hag plans first signing
The Mirror reports that Erik ten Hag has already decided upon one name that he will bring to Old Trafford when he makes his expected switch from Ajax in the close season. The 52-year-old is set to bring in Ajax’s head of performance Alessandro Schoenmaker after concerns were raised with the players’ conditioning at United by Ralf Rangnick and Jose Mourinho.
Paper Round’s view: United’s fitness has been little short of a disgrace in recent years, and while it probably can’t hurt to bring in a new face to get to the bottom of it, it is not like Cristiano Ronaldo’s physique has suffered. Just as much of a problem is the attitude of the squad, which is permitted to train further if they deem it necessary, and it appears few have done so.
Erik ten Hag is interesting the Manchester United hierarchy as they search for their new manager.
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Tevez linked with Milan move
Carlos Tevez has been pictured talking with AC Milan boss Stefano Pioli and Paolo Maldini at the club’s training ground set-up, and The Sun suggests that the player could be making a move to the Italian side. The 38-year-old left Boca Juniors in the summer and has not officially retired, meaning he could be the latest veteran to step into the San Siro alongside players such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Paper Round’s view: It appears that the experienced Argentine was visiting to learn more about the infrastructure at the club, and perhaps Tevez is considering moving into coaching. Visiting one of the better clubs in AC Milan would be a natural stopover for Tevez, but if he has not retired - and should Ibrahimovic finally retire - perhaps he could be tempted back for a final season.
Guardiola hints at new contract
Josep ‘Pep’ Guardiola has a contract that expires in a little over a year’s time, and Manchester City are understandably keen to tie him down to a longer deal. Speaking ahead of the clash with Liverpool, the Spanish manager hinted that he would be prepared to extend his contract to stay at The Etihad, saying, “I'm under contract here, I'm so happy here — I'm not staying forever but I would stay forever.”
Paper Round’s view: Guardiola is clearly content at City, and why wouldn’t he be? They have been happy to spend hundreds of millions in his quest for a decent full-back, and not shown any impatience that he cannot win the Champions League. If he is also paid a huge sum of money for these achievements then he will find it tough to find a better deal elsewhere.
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