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Arsenal transfer news: Inter Milan battling with Gunners to sign Rennes ‘wonderkid’ Ismaila Sarr – reports

Ismaila Sarr is wanted by both Arsenal and Inter Milan ahead of the January transfer window, according to reports.

The Senegal international represented his country at the World Cup in Russia and has been likened to Barcelona superstar Ousmane Dembele.

Sarr dribbles with the ball during a Ligue 1 game

His outstanding displays last season earned him a place on the Golden Boy shortlist, where he scored five goals and registered three assists.

According to the Daily Mirror, Inter Milan are preparing a £20million offer for the youngster in anticipation for a move.

However, Rennes are adamant he will not be sold in the New Year – meaning a bidding war involving Arsenal could take place.

Sarr scored a sensational goal in the Europa League last week and has drawn comparisons with Dembele for his pace, trickery and direct style of play.

If Sarr turns out to be anything like Ousmane Dembele, £20million would be a snip

Although boss Unai Emery has several wide options available to him at the Emirates, it is believed Sarr’s attacking verve and  versatility.

Primarily right-footed, the forward has the capabilities to play across all the attacking midfield positions and also up front.

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West Ham warned over Declan Rice contract: ‘Give him the money or he will leave’

West Ham have been told to show more loyalty to Declan Rice by giving him a contract he deserves, following reports the youngster has rejected a new deal with the Premier League club.

The 19-year-old academy graduate has become a first-team regular at the London Stadium following a breakthrough campaign for the Hammers last season – making 31 appearances for the senior team.

He has been voted the club’s Young Player of the Year for the last two seasons, and yet there are now doubts over his long-term future at West Ham.

The club have been criticised for moving too slowly in tying the youngster down to a new contract, with Rice entering the final two years of his deal which currently sees him earn just £3,000-a-week.

It is claimed West Ham are prepared to offer Rice around £12k-£15k per week to sign a new deal, but that fee is miles away from his advisers’ expectations.

Rice impressed with his performance in Sunday’s 0-0 draw with unbeaten Chelsea at the London Stadium

Rice has thrived under new boss Manuel Pellegrini this season, moving from defence to a defensive midfield role to great effect and impressing with outstanding performances in his last two games – a 3-1 win over Everton and a 0-0 draw with Chelsea.

And former Premier League defender-turned-pundit Danny Higginbotham believes West Ham run the risk of losing the youngster to a rival club if they don’t stump up the money – saying it’s their own fault for allowing his contract to run down.

Speaking on the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast, the ex-Southampton and Stoke star said: “You have to put it in perspective – yes 15k-a-week is a lot of money, but it’s not in football and not in the Premier League.

“A lot of other clubs would be willing to double that – that’s the problem for West Ham.

“West Ham should have started contract negotiations a while ago, because the player holds all the cards now.

“He’ll be going into the last 12 months of his contract in the summer and if you’ve got a young player who you believe in, you just don’t do that.

“You shouldn’t really do that with any player – if you allow a player to go into the last two years of his contract, they hold all the cards and it becomes a big issue.

“That’s West Ham problem for allowing that to happen with Declan Rice.”

If Rice leaves, it would likely cause a big fan backlash, with some sure to turn their fury at the club but there are also those who will look at the player and accuse the youngster of a lack of loyalty.

But Higginbotham says it works both ways, and has called for the Hammers to show more loyalty to their academy graduate and give him a contract he deserves after his breakthrough into the first-team.

“One of the things I’ve seen is that, unfortunately and bizarrely, homegrown lads sometimes don’t get treated the way they should, because the club feels they have a hold on them,” the former defender added.

“There’s no such thing as loyalty in football anymore, sadly.

talkSPORT listeners believe Declan Rice should be happy with a £15k-a-week contract offer from West Ham…

“People go on about players being more loyal to clubs, but it’s a two-way street and if a club doesn’t want you, they will soon get rid of you no matter what you’re earning.

“That’s just football now.”

Listen back to Danny Higginbotham on the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast IN FULL above!

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Transfer news and gossip: Mourinho rages at Pogba, West Ham starlet rejects contract, Arsenal track Ligue 1 winger

Here’s a round-up of the latest news and rumours in Tuesday’s national newspapers and online…

Manchester United and Real Madrid are set to rival Tottenham in the race for Ajax star Frenkie de Jong. The 21-year-old Netherlands international is valued at €80million (£72m) (De Telegraaf)

It is claimed Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho chided Paul Pogba for his role in Wolves’ equaliser at Old Trafford on Saturday. The World Cup winner needlessly lost the ball in the middle of the field as he attempted a flashy turn, and Wolves hit on the counter to level in the 1-1 draw. (The Sun)

Meanwhile, it is claimed United midfielder Ander Herrera would prefer to stay at Old Trafford, despite interest from Barcelona. The 29-year-old’s contract expires at the end of the current season, but talks are underway over a two-year extension. (ESPN)

West Ham risk losing 19-year-old Republic of Ireland defender Declan Rice for nothing next summer after he turned down a new £12,000-a-week contract. (Daily Mail)

With Declan Rice turning down a £12,000-a-week contract at West Ham – How much should a 19-year-old playing regularly in the Premier League be paid?

Danny Murphy has slammed the Hammers for not sorting out the youngster’s deal sooner, saying a host of top Premier League clubs will be vying for his signature when the transfer window reopens FULL STORY

Arsenal are keen on 20-year-old Rennes winger Ismaila Sarr, although Inter Milan are also tracking the Senegalese ace. (Daily Mirror)

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez is due for a meeting with club officials over his budget for the January transfer window, with the club apparently keen to convince the Spanish coach to stay beyond the end of the season. (Daily Telegraph)

Former Manchester United target Alex Sandro is now wanted byParis-Saint Germain. The27-year-old Brazilian full-back was strongly linked with a move to Old Trafford over the summer, but he could now be set to leave Juventus for France instead. (Le10 Sport)

Can Newcastle convince Rafa Benitez to remain as manager? The Spaniard is adored by fans but is frustrated over a lack of transfer funds

Arsenal, Man United, Liverpool, Chelsea and Newcastle are among 18 clubs to have sent scouts to watch Benfica’s 24-year-old German goalkeeper Odisseas Vlachodimos. (Record)

Aston Villa are ready to begin talks with Wales defender James Chester, 29, over a new contract. (Daily Telegraph)

Former England boss Sven-Goran Eriksson is set for a new job as manager of Iranian side Tractor Sazi, where former Wales and Real Madrid coach John Toshack was sacked earlier this month. (The Sun)

Latest exclusives and football headlines: 

Paul Pogba told to ‘stop moaning and get on with it’ after latest swipe at Manchester United

Danny Murphy slams ‘ridiculous’ West Ham for Declan Rice contract delay – ‘All the big clubs will be watching him’

‘HE’LL COME GOOD’ – Arsenal legend urges Manchester United to stick with Alexis Sanchez despite long goal drought

‘Man United form has nothing to do with Jose Mourinho’ – Sam Allardyce defends boss and hits back at Paul Pogba

Luka Modric named FIFA player of the year, Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah wins Puskas Award, plus all the winners from London ceremony

‘The worst goal ever to win the Puskas Award’ – Fans react to Liverpool star Mohamed Salah winning FIFA’s goal of the season

Newcastle fan launches passionate defence of club and city after the Moose’s ‘they are NOT a big club’ rant


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Danny Murphy slams ‘ridiculous’ West Ham for Declan Rice contract delay – ‘All the big clubs will be watching him’

Danny Murphy has warned ‘ridiculous’ West Ham they could face losing emerging star Declan Rice to a bigger club if they don’t tie the 19-year-old down to a new contract soon.

The defender-cum-midfielder – already in a tug of war between the Republic of Ireland and England – is only under contract with the Hammers until next summer.

Rice was voted West Ham’s Young Player of the Year for the second season in a row last year after making 31 appearances, and the London club are eager to keep him.

However, according to The Sun on Sunday, their offer on the table is miles apart from the players’ expectations, after stepping up from their academy to become a key player in Manuel Pellegrini’s side – being shifted from defence to a defensive midfield role to great effect this season.

It was claimed during the summer West Ham had offered Rice a new contract worth just £8,000-a-week – an improvement on his current £3,000-a-week deal but considerably less than what other first-team players earn at the London Stadium.

Rice impressed with his performance in Sunday’s 0-0 draw with unbeaten Chelsea at the London Stadium

Further reports have also claimed several Premier League clubs are considering January bids for the versatile youngster.

And Murphy believes West Ham could end up paying the price for their own stupidity in allowing the starlet’s contract to run into its final year.

Declan Rice has all the attributes to play for England, no doubt about that, and he’ll have a long career in the Premier League,” the ex-Liverpool, Tottenham and Fulham ace told Jim White on Monday.

“He’s at a good club where he’s playing every week, but I’m amazed West Ham haven’t got him a new contract sorted.

“He’s only got next year left and he’s still on a young man’s contract, playing in the Premier League and dealing with the likes of Eden Hazard.

“Why haven’t they sorted it? This lad hasn’t just come into the first team, he’s been around since last season!

Rice has played three times for Ireland, though not any competitive games, so could still switch his allegiance to England

“This is typical of lots of clubs who forget to reward young lads when they’re doing really well – and I don’t mean stupid money, I don’t agree with young lads who aren’t in the first team earning £20,000-a-week.

“But he is on a very low contract, playing at the top level, dealing with some top players and looking very, very accomplished.

“All of a sudden he’s only got next season on his contract and what, West Ham think the big clubs aren’t watching him now?

“Daniel Levy has got critics, but Tottenham’s young players generally get looked after and each time they do well they get rewarded.

Rice has shown he can perform in the Premier League despite his tender age

“I’m amazed at West Ham, it’s ridiculous for a lad of this talent.

“It shouldn’t have got to this. You can’t let this happen.

“They’ve got a problem now after his last couple of performances. They’ve got a super young player who they haven’t looked after and dealt with.

“Hopefully they deal with it soon.

“He’s probably very happy there and wants to stay, but they have to act quickly because his performances now are taking him to a different level.”

Listen back to Danny Murphy on talkSPORT above

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Arsenal rejected the chance to sign Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk for just £12million because he was ‘too nonchalant’

Arsenal could have signed Virgil van Dijk for just £12million but turned down the chance to buy him because he was “too nonchalant”.

Van Dijk is now the world’s most expensive defender after completing his £75million move to Liverpool from Southampton.

Van Dijk has played a key role in suring up Liverpool’s previously shaky defence

He has been a rock for the Reds which has led to former Liverpool defender John Arne Riise claiming he is the best centre-back in the world.

The Dutchman first came to prominence when he moved to Celtic in June 2013 before moving to the south coast in September 2015.

However, it has emerged Van Dijk could have joined Arsenal instead of Southampton but the Gunners’ chief scout Steve Rowley decided against signing him.

Former Celtic assistant boss John Collins told beIN Sport: “Arsenal’s chief scout thought he [Van Dijk] was too nonchalant.

Arsenal had the chance to sign Van Dijk when he was a Celtic player

“Maybe that was part of his game but he ticks so many of the other boxes.

“He’s got pace, power, balance, distribution and he’s good in the air.

“He can be a bit nonchalant but he is a quality player.

However, Collins also claimed former Reds manager Brendan Rodgers also turned down the chance to sign Van Dijk.

He added: “Gary McAllister was the assistant to Brendan Rodgers at Liverpool and I told him, ‘I hope you’re going to come and take Virgil’ but Brendan didn’t fancy him and didn’t think he was better than what we already had.

“He would’ve cost around £12m. Every team watched him regularly but the worry was he was showing it against Scottish players but you could tell he was strong, powerful and a well balanced player.”

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Juventus to pursue Manchester City’s Leroy Sane as Serie A giants reportedly eye ‘a young Cristiano Ronaldo’

Juventus have identified Manchester City star Leroy Sane as a future transfer target.

The Serie A club were very busy in the transfer window in the summer with the pick of their signings being the mega-money acquisition of Cristiano Ronaldo from Real Madrid.

Juventus are hoping to prise Sane away from City in the future

However, according to Italian outlet CalcioMercato, Juve chairman Andrea Agnelli would like to sign ‘a young Cristiano Ronaldo’.

Sane is reportedly the player Agnelli wants but an approach will not be made for the £135m-rated winger for at least a year or two considering Juventus’ recent significant financial outlay.

The German was surprisingly omitted from his country’s World Cup squad despite having a brilliant 2017/18 season with City where they won the Premier League and Carabao Cup.

He also scooped the PFA Young Player of the Year award but did not make the cut for Joachim Low’s squad in Russia.

After a slow start for his club this campaign, Sane has had a productive last two games – scoring in their 3-0 win over Fulham as well as playing a part in one of City’s goals during their 5-0 win at Cardiff.


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Tottenham target Jack Grealish to be offered new Aston Villa contract with £60million release clause

Tottenham’s chances of signing Jack Grealish could be diminished as he is set to sign a new deal at Aston Villa with a £60million release clause.

The midfielder was heavily linked with a move to Spurs in the summer, however, the Championship side insisted their star player was not for sale.

Grealish is consoled by John Terry after Villa’s Championship play-off final defeat to Fulham in May

Villa turned down a £25m offer from the north London club and a new contract will include a set fee for clubs to meet.

And according to the Daily Express, the asking price will increase to £60m which is likely to scare off any interest from Mauricio Pochettino’s side.

In August, Villa boss Steve Bruce said the club were in talks with Grealish but there was one big hurdle preventing a deal.

“We hope to reward him, we’re in talks with him now. I hope that it can progress,” he said.

“It’s difficult at the moment because we haven’t got a CEO to do those discussions, but we’ve learnt from the owner very quickly that what he says goes.

“He said by the end of the month that we can get an agreement with Jack and keep him here.”

The Villans narrowly missed out on promotion to the Premier League last season and they have not made the best start to their Championship campaign this season.

They are currently 13th in the second tier having lost 2-1 at home to Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.

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Transfer news and gossip: Barcelona step up interest in Paul Pogba, Virgil van Dijk could have signed for Arsenal, Tottenham dealt Jack Grealish blow

Liverpool appear set to make even more money out of Philippe Coutinho’s move to Barcelona


Barcelona plan to watch Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba in every game ahead of possible summer transfer

Liverpool could receive another £27million from Barcelona for the Philippe Coutinho transfer if three release clauses are met

Yannick Carrasco is a January transfer target for Arsenal and Italian champions Juventus

Other rumours

Arsenal turned down the chance to sign Virgil van Dijk from Celtic when he would have cost just £12million (beIN Sports via Metro)

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has confirmed he’s been offered a return to boyhood club Malmo (The Sun)

Tottenham target Jack Grealish set to sign new Aston Villa deal with £60m release clause (Daily Express)

Fulham plotting £18million move for Lyon star Maxwel Cornet — who scored against stunned Manchester City in the Champions League this week (The Sun)

Manchester City to take on Manchester United in the battle to sign Ajax wonderkid Frenkie De Jong (Daily Mirror) 

Wolves are undertaking a massive recruitment drive at academy level to try and compete with the likes of financial powerhouses Chelsea and Manchester City (Daily Mirror)


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Arsenal transfer news: Yannick Carrasco eyed for January move, with Juventus also interested in former Atletico Madrid star

Yannick Carrasco is a January transfer target for Arsenal and Italian champions Juventus.

The former Atletico Madrid forward has spent almost a year in the Chinese Super League, a move which caused controversy nine months ago when he decided to join Dalian Yifang along with team-mate Nicolas Gaitan.

Carrasco wants a return to Europe after spending half a year in China

Despite the lucrative move, the 25-year-old still managed to make Roberto Martinez’s Belgium World Cup squad – helping the Red Devils finish third in Russia.

However, the forward is reportedly on the lookout for a club in Europe.

According to Calciomercato, Carrasco wants to return to Europe and is searching for an interested.

Last year, both Juve and the Gunners were chasing the mercurial winger, who scored in the 2016 Champions League Final.

Carrasco bags in the Champions League Final against city rivals Real in 2016

Should the opportunity present itself, it seems as though one of them should get their man this time around.

The Belgium international has scored three goals in 11 games since making the switch to China, but he could already be about to call time on his spell in the New Year.

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Barcelona plan to watch Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba in every game ahead of possible summer transfer

Barcelona plan to watch Manchester United’s Paul Pogba in every game for the rest of this season as they consider a move for the midfield star.

The Spanish Liga club were said to be keen on recruiting him last summer, but a move never materialised and representatives were there to see him in action in the Champions League against Young Boys on Wednesday night.

Paul Pogba has hinted at tensions between him and Jose Mourinho

While it is not uncommon for club’s to monitor other players, Pogba’s frosty relationship with manager Jose Mourinho and rumours of Pogba’s agent, Mino Raiola attempting to orchestrate a summer exit, will no doubt give interested parties hope of landing him.

When quizzed at the start of September about his plans he said: “My future is currently in Manchester, I still have a contract, I’m playing there at the moment, but who knows what will happen in the next few months.

“One thing I can assure you: I will always give 100 percent, no matter which coach I always give everything for United – I cannot say more.”

Pogba was outstanding against Young Boys

And according to the Mirror, Barcelona’s hierarchy, which includes general manager Pep Segura and technical directors Eric Abidal and Ramon Planes, are keeping an eye on things at Old Trafford ahead of a possible £100m-plus move.

Luis Suarez appears to have already begun the courting when he said a player like Pogba ‘would always be welcome’ at the Camp Nou, while former Man United defender Gary Neville said the club ‘will be fine’ if the man they spent £89m on in 2016 does decide to pack his bags.

“As a fan, honestly, part of me is that no one is bigger than the club and I am not interested in people who are looking left and right,” he said.

“So Paul, if you want to go play somewhere else, let’s make that work for you because Manchester United will be fine, don’t worry about that.

“The owner in me would do what United are doing at the moment, saying he is not for sale. They have to protect their asset but privately they might be doing a deal because they want to get their £90 million back.

“If I was still in that dressing room giving personal advice it would be, ‘Paul, it’s obvious you want to play somewhere else but be professional. Don’t be someone who is seen as a mercenary or a mutineer. You don’t need to do that.’

“So there are four ways to look at it — pundit, owner, fan, a personal word.”

Pogba was one of France’s best players as they won the World Cup this summer

Since winning the World Cup with France, Pogba has started the season brightly, scoring four goals in six games for United so far.

Against Young Boys, he was on target twice and created the other in a man of the match display. “I am happy that the goals I scored were decisive in the win,” he said. “If I can do it, I will try to help the team as much as possible. If I can score a goal or make an assist, that will be great.”

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