Solskjaer on the brink at United
Manchester United players believe that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's time at Old Trafford could soon be at an end. United have struggled in the league and Europe this season despite the arrival of Raphael Varane, Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo. The Sun reports a source saying: “Some of the players think Solskjaer has two games and that if United don’t win these two games, he could leave." United have a Champions League game against Atalanta before facing Liverpool, and defeats in both could wreck their season despite it being October.
Parker: Rangnick arrival won't be 'bed of roses', but who will the thorns be?
Paper Round's view: It is incredible to think that Solskjaer's experience at Molde, Cardiff City, and Molde again did not prepare him adequately for the task at hand with United. He may have kept the players happier than they were under Jose Mourinho, but if he can't turn them into a functioning team then it is time a replacement is identified - either now or this summer.
Solskjaer defends himself and Ronaldo ahead of Man Utd CL clash with Atalanta
Premier League clubs want to make sponsor ban permanent
Eighteen out of 20 Premier League clubs voted last week to create a rule that prevents owners' companies from sponsoring their clubs. Newcastle and Manchester City were the only clubs not to vote for the measure, and the remaining sides want to make sure that the rule can become legally enforceable and permanent, reports the Daily Mail.
Paper Round's view: On the one hand, you can see the logic for this rule. It is clearly an attempt to stop bogus and inflated sponsorship deals distorting the appearance of club finances, and allowing the receiving club to meet financial fair play rules more easily than if they were being appraised at real commercial value. On the other hand, FFP is merely an exercise in protecting the big clubs from richer sides, and there is no reason why that is especially justified.
Barca agree Fati deal
After a few weeks of consternation, where it appeared that Barcelona and Ansu Fati were far apart when it came to agreeing terms on a new deal with the club, Spanish newspaper Marca reports that a new contract is close. It is expected that the new terms include a hefty raise, and will run until 2027.
Paper Round's view: It is not yet clear if the new arrangement has moved Fati's release clause to anything like the one billion euros they had been looking for, but if Fati stays the full term, until 2027, then they will have secured decent value for the 18 year old who has the potential to become an exceptional player.
Arsenal face competition for Isak
Arsenal expect Alexandre Lacazette to leave the club when his contract expires at the end of the season, having long been linked with a move to Atletico Madrid. The Mirror says that they are keen on replacing him with 22-year-old Alexander Isak of Real Sociedad, but they will face competition. Barcelona see Isak as a cheaper alternative to Erling Haaland, who can leave Borussia Dortmund for around £68 million next summer.
Paper Round's view: Isak is improving at a decent rate in Spain, and his ratio of about a goal every three games would likely improve at a better club such as Barcelona. Whether Arsenal are a much better team than Sociedad right now is a question worth asking, but they appear to have the money to attempt a fix under Mikel Arteta and Edu.
Manchester United appoint Rangnick as interim boss
‘He obviously saw football as a career option’ - Rangnick’s stint in Sussex non-league football