Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Transfer Gossip: Lionel Messi role in Cristiano Ronaldo exit request emerges as Man Utd get Paulo Dybala belief; Arsenal ready offer for Bayern star

Lionel Messi, Antonella Roccuzzo and Cristiano Ronaldo during the Best FIFA Football Awards 2017 at the Palladium Theatre, London

Manchester United are reportedly closing on a deal for Paulo Dybala, amid claims a Lionel Messi fear is driving the Cristiano Ronaldo exit request, while Monday’s Transfer Gossip claims Arsenal are readying a bid for a £60m-rated Bayern Munich star.

MAN UTD STEP UP PAULO DYBALA HUNT

Manchester United are reportedly growing in confidence they can secure the signing of Paulo Dybala this summer.

The Argentina forward is a free agent, having come to the end of his contract with Juventus. He departs the Bianconeri after seven seasons and 115 goals in 293 games. As such, demand for his services is high. That chase was seemingly being led by Inter Milan. But their recent capture of Romelu Lukaku back from Chelsea complicates matters, with finances tight at the San Siro.

That has seemingly opened the door for other suitors to step in, with Napoli and AC Milan also considering swoops.

However, it emerged on Sunday that Arsenal and now Manchester United are also back in the hunt. As a result, they are reportedly in touch with Dybala’s agent to ascertain the forward’s current status.

United’s interest in Dybala comes amid surprise claims that Cristiano Ronaldo has asked to leave Old Trafford.

Citing their lack of progress in the transfer market, the veteran Portuguese star reportedly fears United will struggle next season.

Now the Daily Mail claims their interest in Paulo Dybala is genuine and they quickly hope to agree a deal with his agent. Once that is done, his signing would appear a relatively straight forward issue, given there is no transfer fee to negotiate.

Manchester United can help grease the wheels by offering the Argentina foward a hefty signing-on bonus, as well as handsome wages at Old Trafford. With the player reportedly seeking a deal worth £200,000 a week, that is well within United’s reach.

RONALDO WANTS OUT DUE TO LIONEL MESSI FEAR

While Ronaldo has reportedly cited a lack of progress on the signings front as a reason to leave, there are also other reasons behind his wish.

The 37-year-old scored 24 times in 38 appearances in 2021/22 after re-signing for the Red Devils. That tally includes six goals in seven Champions League matches, continuing his phenomenal record in the competition.

Overall, it now means Ronaldo has an astonishing 141 goals in the competition over the past 19 seasons. He’s the competition’s record goalscorer, though Lionel Messi sits only 16 goals behind.

With Messi set to play in the competition against next season with PSG, Ronaldo wants to keep his rival at arms’ length, hence the exit request.

The Daily Mirror claims Ronaldo sees the Europa League as being below him.

As per reports, Chelsea, Bayern Munich and Napoli are the three clubs keen.

And United are reportedly willing to let the player leave if either clubs meets their valuation – believed to be £12m – for the veteran striker.

Ronaldo – the ego and the goals accolades

Assessing the claims Ronaldo wants to extend his Champions League record, talkSPORT pundit Tony Cascarino insists it is his ego driving the request.

Ronaldo isn’t going anywhere

Erik Ten Hag has said Cristiano Ronaldo is not for sale after Chelsea boss Todd Boehly met with Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes to discuss the possibility of a deal.

“Ronaldo is a player, as always, that has an ego. A lot of it is about him but the teams he’s played in have been successful, so you always go with that as a team player.

“Great, he scores goals, he gets the accolades, he’s one of the greatest that’s ever played the game. You can have all that and that’s fine, as long as you’re winning. When you don’t win, now you’ve got a problem.

“I said to you off-air, I’m a bit suspicious because he’s got 141 goals in the Champions League. Messi has got 125. He doesn’t want to not play Champions League football because he wants to be the greatest Champions League goalscorer of all time and that’s how Ronaldo is made.”

Reports on Monday claim Erik ten Hag though is not happy at Ronaldo’s request. As such, the Daily Star claims he has been told he must go on the club’s pre-season tour, with a match versus Liverpool in Thailand on July 12 on the horizon.

Meanwhile, Marcus Rashford has been told he could be the big benefactor of Ronaldo’s departure.

ARSENAL TO LAUNCH SERGE GNABRY BID

Arsenal are reportedly looking to make a firm offer for Bayern Munich winger Serge Gnabry in the coming days.

The star departed Emirates Stadium in 2016, having failed to make the grade. However, moving to his native Germany, Gnabry has proven himself one of the best goalscoring wingers around.

Borussia Dortmund v Bayern Munich, Manuel Akanji and Serge Gnabry

Indeed, he boasts 63 goals in 171 appearances for the Bavarians, showing his expertise in front of goal.

Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is seeking more goals from his wings next season. And the club have already seen approaches to land Leeds star Raphinha quickly knocked back.

However, they could have more joy with Gnabry, given his Bayern Munich situation.

As per reports at the weekend, they will not stand in his way if a suitable offer comes in. With just 12 months left on his deal, an agremeent over an extension remains unsigned.

And sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic informs Sky Germany that his sale is a possible solution.

“We really want to keep him. I hope that he chooses Bayern. If a player doesn’t want to decide for the club, then we can find a solution that makes everyone happy,” he said.

Rated at £60m, Bayern are fearful he will likely leave for much less, with a figure of £35m reportedly tempting his sale.

Now, as per multiple reports, Arsenal are ready to submit an opening approach to Bayern for the star.