Manchester United are the best-placed club to sign an in-form France striker, despite facing competition from one of Europe’s biggest teams, Chelsea are no longer at risk of losing an important star to Bayern Munich, while Tuesday’s Transfer Gossip claims Premier League teams are surprisingly interested in snapping up a four-time domestic champion from Manchester City.
MAN UTD ‘PUSHING’ FOR RANDAL KOLO MUANI SIGNING
Man Utd are ‘pushing the most’ to revamp their striker options with the capture of Randal Kolo Muani this summer, according to one source.
Kolo Muani took a big next step in his career last summer when he swapped French club Nantes for Frankfurt on a free transfer. But he has adapted to the Bundesliga excellently, having scored 13 times and registered 12 assists in 28 appearances. When all competitions are included, the centre-forward has managed 20 goals and 14 assists in 40 matches, making him one of the most prolific attackers in Germany.
Frankfurt tied Kolo Muani down to a long-term contract when signing him from Nantes – it lasts until June 2027. However, it is very unlikely he will remain at the club for that long.
The Frenchman, who played three times for Didier Deschamps’ side at the Qatar World Cup, has become a target for some major teams.
Man Utd have identified Kolo Muani as a potential signing, should they miss out on both Harry Kane and Victor Osimhen. And that is looking increasingly likely.
With Tottenham’s problems only deepening, Gary Neville has said Spurs chairman Daniel Levy cannot let Kane go this summer.
And on Monday, it emerged that Osimhen is far more likely to join Bayern or Paris Saint-Germain than Man Utd ahead of next season.
But Man Utd will not let those transfer disappointments get to them as they are ready to prioritise Kolo Muani instead. According to Sky Sports reporter Florian Plettenberg, the Red Devils are ‘pushing the most’ to sign Kolo Muani from Frankfurt.
Striker’s agent identifying potential next clubs
They have been alerted to the situation after Kolo Muani’s agent began ‘sounding out the market’ to see which clubs might be interested in launching a bid.
It seems Man Utd only have to fend off one transfer rival to sign the 24-year-old, although that will not be simple as the competitor is Bayern.
Plettenberg adds that initial talks between Bayern officials and Kolo Muani’s representatives have begun and went ‘positively’.
Both Man Utd and Bayern have found out the goalscorer will cost €100million (£88m) plus bonuses. While this is clearly a big sum, there are two reasons why it is worth paying.
The first is Kolo Muani’s incredible form this season, which shows he has the potential to emerge into one of the best strikers in Europe. Secondly, Kane and Osimhen will both cost over £100m, so signing Kolo Muani for less than this makes for a good deal.
Plettenberg states Kolo Muani has not made any decision on his future yet as he is fully focused on Frankfurt’s end to the season. But in the summer, he will decide which major team he wants to join next.
Man Utd are in a good position to take him to the Premier League. And if Bayern beat PSG to Osimhen’s services, then Erik ten Hag will have effectively a free shot at landing Kolo Muani.
CHELSEA ACE NO LONGER WANTED IN BAVARIA
Chelsea fans will be delighted after learning that Bayern have decided not to pursue midfielder Mateo Kovacic this summer.
Kovacic’s future at Stamford Bridge is uncertain as his contract expires in June 2024. If the Blues are unable to tie him down to fresh terms, then they will be forced to sell him later this year.
The former Real Madrid man has surprisingly been linked with moves to either Man Utd or Liverpool. However, him going to Bayern is a transfer that would make more sense.
Recently, FCB Inside named Kovacic as Thomas Tuchel’s ‘absolute dream’ signing for Bayern. This is because the pair worked together at Chelsea, with Tuchel remaining a big fan of him.
But as per Florian Plettenberg, a Bayern swoop for the 28-year-old will not arrive this summer. Kovacic is ‘definitely not a transfer target’ for the Bundesliga giants, despite the recent rumours.
Plettenberg writes that Bayern have other names in mind as they look to improve the midfield. Although, the journalist does not name any specific targets.
He adds that right now, Tuchel’s side are prioritising a new striker, with current number nine Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting now 34 years old and younger option Mathys Tel not yet developed enough to lead the attack. This is why Bayern are in the mix for Osimhen and Kolo Muani, as previously mentioned.
It is now up to Chelsea officials to get a new contract agreed with Kovacic. This will prevent any more exit links from emerging and will also allow the player to focus solely on his form, rather than a potential transfer away.
It is clear that Chelsea need to offload at least two midfielders in the summer as their options in the position are bloated. But Kovacic should not be one of them.
He is a hugely talented player who possesses the mentality to get stuck in and the ability to weave his way around opponents before setting up Chelsea attacks.
Instead, Chelsea chairman Todd Boehly should focus on selling players such as Conor Gallagher and Ruben Loftus-Cheek.
BARCELONA FACE PREM RIVALS FOR MAN CITY STALWART
Barcelona are no longer the only team interested in Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan as there is rising Premier League interest in him, according to a report.
Gundogan has had a hugely successful spell at City, having won four league titles, one FA Cup and four League Cups. And he could help the club to add more silverware to their trophy cabinet as they are in pole position to win the Prem, while also being in the FA Cup final and Champions League semis.
Gundogan could leave the Etihad after captaining City to a brilliant treble. His contract with the club expires in the summer and it is unclear whether he will be offered an extension.
City feel the German has earned the right to decide what to do next in his career after performing so well for them over the years.
Gundogan has been heavily linked with Barca. The Spanish giants are prioritising cheap deals once again this summer and Gundogan fits the bill thanks to his contract expiring.
He would be a great addition at the Nou Camp as he has proven himself to be one of the best all-round midfielders in Europe while at City. Plus, he would bring a winning attitude to Barca.
But according to Marca (via Sport Witness), the Blaugrana at at risk of losing out on Gundogan. They claim an agreement between the two parties is ‘not close’ due to him having other options.
It’s stated that Gundogan has received offers from several Prem clubs, which has got him thinking about a potential stay in England. Although, the report does not reveal exactly which teams these are.
These English sides are expected to provide Barca with fierce ‘competition’ for the 32-year-old as they can offer him better wages than Xavi’s team.
Despite the contract offers from the Prem, it would not be a surprise if Gundogan still ended up joining Barca. They remain one of the most attractive destinations in Europe for any player and can also offer stars a great chance to win trophies. They are poised to win the La Liga title after opening up an 11-point gap on second-placed Real Madrid.