Battle for Benfica striker Nunez
Darwin Nunez could be at the centre of a Premier League tug-of-war as the Uruguayan striker attracts interest following another impressive season. The 22-year-old now has a £67 million release clause, reports The Mirror, and Arsenal are keen to replace Pierre-Emerick Aubmayang, Eddie Nketiah and Alexandre Lacazette. Newcastle United and Manchester United are also keen.
Chelsea’s Alonso pushing for Barca move, Ziyech could also leave - reports
Paper Round’s view: Nunez’s goalscoring in the Portuguese league can be looked at with some scepticism, given the relatively poor quality of the competition, but with goals in the Champions League and his obvious potential, he could be worth a risk. Arsenal in particular look on the cusp of breaking through into the top four once again, and have the need for a striker.
Real may miss out on Tchouameni
Monaco’s 22-year-old midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni is wanted by Real Madrid but their focus is on trying to land both Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland, so the Frenchman may have to wait. That could open up a chance for Premier League sides Manchester City, Manchester United and Liverpool, though Italian club Juventus do not stand a chance of signing him.
Paper Round’s view: Tchouameni looks like an excellent prospect and Monaco are usually ready to sell at a reasonable price, so a deal should not be too hard to get over the line, if one of the three clubs do indeed want him. However in recent years it has taken a little time for Monaco players, like Timoue Bakayoko and Fabinho, to settle in when they began playing English football.
Salah ready for Barcelona
The Sun claims that Mohamed Salah has told Liverpool that he wants to quit the Premier League club this summer, with the 29-year-old Egypt international out of contract in 2023. The Spanish club are willing to offer £58m for the player, and Liverpool could transfer list him if he fails to agree a new deal - but Liverpool value him at around £30m more than Barca’s potential bid.
Paper Round’s view: Asking for £80m or more for a 29-year-old player would represent solid business for Liverpool, no matter how talented he is. Salah has played a lot of football over the years and while he remains in excellent physical condition, most players fail to kick on beyond their thirties. Of course, Robert Lewandowski, Cristiano Ronaldo and a few others have shown it is possible.
Boehly ready to go
The Telegraph gives an update on the bids for Chelsea. The club is valued at around £2bn but bids could come in over that sum as there are a number of groups looking to win the asset. Sebastian Coe and Sir Martin Broughton are interested, and American Todd Boehly says that he would be able to complete a bid before the April 2 fixture with Brentford.
Paper Round’s view: While the bids are in, it’s not entirely clear how a deal can be completed while Roman Abramovich is sanctioned. While other fans might be enjoying Chelsea’s problem, the government will probably make sure that the club can be removed from the disgraced Russian while working to preclude him from getting access to any cash until sanctions are lifted.
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