CHELSEA TO FACE STONES FIGHT
There are two big exclusives regarding the future of Everton defender John Stones in Sunday’s newspapers, neither of which make for happy reading for supporters of the Blues.
First of all, the Sunday Express claims the young England defender held a meeting with Roberto Martinez at the end of last season in which he informed the Toffees manager he would like to ‘further his career elsewhere if the opportunity arose’.
Everton have already rejected one offer from Chelsea, but the Premier League champions are apparently prepared to offer a deal worth £30million including add-ons for the 21-year-old. The Merseyside club, however, are said to be holding out for £36million, with Stones’ former club Barnsley due 15% of the fee.
The Express claims Manchester City have expressed an interest in Stones but are yet to make a bid, but the second exclusive comes from the Sunday People, which claims Manchester United have made contact with Everton regarding the centre-back.
Sergio Ramos and Nicolas Otamendi are Louis van Gaal’s top transfer targets for the summer, but the Old Trafford outfit are also long-term admirers of Stones and have apparently asked to be kept informed of his situation.
Everton may prefer to do business with United, with Jonny Evans, Javier Hernandez, Ashley Young and Tyler Blackett all players that would interest Martinez as part of a swap deal, the People claims.
The newspaper adds that Arsenal are also believed to be admirers of Stones.
ARSENAL INTERESTED IN DZEKO
Arsene Wenger said after Arsenal’s 6-0 win over Lyon on Saturday that he is not “desperate” to sign a new striker, but the Sunday Express reckons the Frenchman is interested in Manchester City’s Edin Dzeko.
The Bosnia star is expected to leave the Etihad Stadium this summer and has already been the subject of one £12million offer from Roma, which was refused, but Arsenal are apparently ready to enter the bidding after failing to persuade Real Madrid to sell Karim Benzema.
The only stumbling block, the newspaper adds, is the price, with City looking for around £18million for Dzeko, but Arsenal unwilling to go above £14million.
With Dzeko and Stevan Jovetic heading for the exit door, City have identified Napoli’s Gonzalo Higuain as a possible replacement, according to The Sun on Sunday.
The Italian club are not keen on selling the Argentine, but City can offer him Champions League football, which could prove decisive should they make a bid. They may, however, have to go to £45million to land him.
UNITED REBUFF CARRICK INTEREST
Manchester United have knocked back approaches from both Newcastle and Inter Milan for Michael Carrick, according to the Sunday People.
The midfielder’s place in the first team is set to come under threat from Bastian Schweinsteiger and Morgan Schneiderlin this season, but the 33-year-old only signed a one-year extension to his contract in May and is said to remain a key part of Louis van Gaal’s plans for the new season.
Newcastle in particular were apparently optimistic about landing Carrick, but they may find United more receptive to a sale in 12 months’ time having helped the club through a transitional season and by which time the Geordie will be 34.
AND THE REST
– Angel Di Maria is on the verge of leaving Manchester United for Paris Saint-Germain for £46.5m (various)
– Tottenham are set to complete the £15m signing of West Brom striker Saido Berahino in the next 48 hours (Sunday Express)
– Tottenham’s chase for Hajduk Split midfielder Tino-Sven Susic has received a boost as he wants a move to the Premier League (The Sun on Sunday)
– Tottenham are interested in Stuttgart forward Timo Werner and have been linked with Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Christoph Kramer and Borussia Dortmund midfielder Sven Bender (Sunday Telegraph)
– Arsenal striker Danny Welbeck is an audacious target for Besiktas as they look to replace Demba Ba (Daily Star Sunday
– Italian striker Fabio Borini has been offered to Aston Villa and Leicester as his Liverpool career comes to an end (The Sun on Sunday)
– Leicester have entered the race for Liverpool striker Rickie Lambert (Sunday Mirror)
– Chelsea are weighing up a move for Augsburg full-back Baba Rahman (Daily Star Sunday)
– Theo Walcott has agreed a new contract with Arsenal that will keep him at the Emirates until 2019, while goalkeeper David Ospina is set to extend his stay with the Gunners after a summit meeting with Arsene Wenger (Sunday Mirror)
– Everton are eyeing Sporting Lisbon winger Diego Capel if Kevin Mirallas opts for a £10m move to West Ham (Sunday Express)
– Everton will offer Kevin Mirallas a new contract to keep him away from West Ham (The Sun on Sunday)
– Crystal Palace winger Yannick Bolasie wants to leave Selhurst Park amid interest from a number of other Premier League clubs (Sunday Express)
– Crystal Palace are plotting a move for Newcastle skipper Fabricio Coloccini as Alan Pardew seeks a reunion with the Argentine defender (Sunday People)
– Crystal Palace are on the trail of Borussia Dortmund striker Adrian Ramos (Daily Star Sunday)
– Southampton and Newcastle want Hull defender James Chester (Sunday Express)
– Aston Villa want Rennes flyer Paul-Georges Ntep in a £10million deal (Daily Star Sunday)
– West Ham hope to use boss Slaven Bilic’s Croatian connection to fight off Real Betis and sign Barcelona starlet Alen Halilovic on loan (Daily Star Sunday)
– Swansea are set to launch a move for Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher (Sunday Mirror)
– Swansea will move for Tottenham striker Emmanuel Adebayor if they lose Bafetimbi Gomis to Dubai-based Al Ahli (Daily Star Sunday
– Leicester have Galatasaray captain Selcuk Inan on their radar as they look to replace Esteban Cambiasso (Daily Star Sunday)
– Bournemouth are set to make a £3m bid for QPR forward Junior Hoilett (Sunday Mirror)
– Norwich haven’t given up trying to sign Hull wing-back Robbie Brady (Daily Star Sunday