Man Utd have ‘agreed internally’ to activate a striker’s €120m release clause, while Arsenal are prepared to bid for a Real Madrid forward and Jurgen Klopp has been installed as the ‘priority’ target at a European giant – all in Wednesday’s Euro Paper Talk.
MAN UTD GO BIG WITH ‘NEXT CRISTIANO RONALDO’
The Red Devils are prepared to take the bull by the horns and activate a Portuguese striker’s €120m release clause this summer, per a report.
That’s according to A Bola (via FourFourTwo), who report: ‘Manchester United have agreed internally to pay the release clause of the player being dubbed ‘the next Cristiano Ronaldo’.’ The man in question? Benfica’s Goncalo Ramos.
A new centre-forward is widely known to be United’s number one transfer priority this summer. The Athletic revealed a box-to-box midfielder and an attacking upgrade at right-back are also wanted, but the striker chase will take precedence.
Moves for either Harry Kane or Victor Osimhen have been touted. However, neither player’s contract contains a release clause and both Tottenham and Napoli hold reputations as notoriously tough negotiators.
Spurs are dead set against selling Kane to a domestic rival. Napoli, meanwhile, are under no financial pressure to cash in on their talismanic frontman.
United are wary of getting bogged down in a striker pursuit that ultimately might end in defeat. The memories of failing to sign Frenkie de Jong after a multi-month chase are not forgotten.
As such, A Bola report Man Utd are now prepared to act decisively for Benfica’s Goncalo Ramos. The 21-year-old has notched an impressive 35 goal contributions in just 37 matches this season, including six in the comparatively tougher Champions League.
If neither Kane nor Osimhen can be signed, the report states United chiefs have ‘agreed’ they’ll trigger Ramos’ €120m (approx. £105m) release clause.
A fee of that size would be set a new United transfer record, though would be a touch below the British record set by Chelsea when signing Enzo Fernandez in January (£106.8m).
Ramos is viewed in Portugal as the heir apparent to Cristiano Ronaldo. He already showcased his suitability to assuming that mantle when scoring a hattrick against Switzerland in the World Cup after being selected ahead of Ronaldo in the Round of 16.
ARSENAL WANT REAL MADRID ATTACKER
Arsenal are prepared to pay €30m to sign versatile Spanish attacker, Brahim Diaz. The 23-year-old is also wanted by AC Milan where he’s currently on loan from Real Madrid. (Caught Offside)
Luis Enrique has arrived in London ahead of meeting with Chelsea to discuss succeeding Graham Potter. Enrique is “100% keen” on taking the job, though Julian Nagelsmann remains the favourite for now. (Fabrizio Romano)
Lionel Messi has received an offer worth around €400m-per-year to play for Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal. The Argentine’s preference is to remain in Europe until at least after the 2024 Copa America, though a PSG ‘divorce’ this summer is looming. (Fabrizio Romano and L’Equipe)
Man Utd are open to selling Donny van de Beek this summer and he can re-join Ajax if they stump up £25m. (Football Insider)
Newcastle have a second shot at signing former transfer target Hugo Ekitike who’ll be transfer-listed by PSG this summer (Le Parisien)
KLOPP ‘PRIORITY’ TARGET AT EURO GIANT
Jurgen Klopp is the ‘priority’ target to replace Carlo Ancelotti at Real Madrid this summer. Ancelotti is under pressure with Barcelona running away with LaLiga and poised to knock Real out of the Copa del Rey (Le 10 Sport)
Arsenal have settled on their number one managerial target in the event Mikel Arteta is poached by Real Madrid: Brighton’s Roberto De Zerbi. (TuttoSport)
Lazio will make one final attempt to convince Sergej Milinkovic-Savic to sign a new deal amid strong interest from Arsenal and Juventus. The Serbian has resisted Lazio’s attempts thus far and is out of contract in 2024. (La Gazzetta dello Sport)
Man Utd stand no better chance of signing Frenkie de Jong in 2023 than they did in 2022. The Dutchman is one of just three Barcelona players who are non-transferrable this summer for any price. The others are Ronald Araujo and Pedri. (SPORT)
NEWCASTLE WANT MAN CITY DEFENDER
Newcastle are mulling a move for Man City defender Taylor Harwood-Bellis. The 21-year-old centre-half – who’s on loan at Burnley this year – still hopes to make the grade at the Etihad, though Newcastle could give him a quicker route to Premier League football. (90min)
Forgotten Real Madrid striker, Mariano Diaz, will leave as a free agent at season’s end and has “possibilities” of moving to the Premier League. (Diaz’s agent, David Aranda)
Bayern Munich are readying a €50m (£44m) bid to sign Arsenal and Man Utd target, Rasmus Hojlund. The Atalanta hitman, 20, scored five goals in his last two matches for Denmark during the recent international break. (TuttoAtalanta)
Liverpool are unwilling to pay the release clause of Benfica sensation, Antonio Silva. The 19-year-old centre-back is already a regular for Portugal, though his €100m (£88m) release fee isn’t tempting the Reds. (A Bola)
Arsenal remain keen on signing Brighton’s Moises Caicedo after seeing several January approaches knocked back. (Football Insider)