Chelsea ready for £150m spree
The Mail claims that Chelsea’s new owner Todd Boehly wants to kickstart his team’s new era by spending big, and early. After meeting with Jorge Mendes, he is considering a huge offer for Ousmane Dembele, bringing in Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling, and also will look to address departures in defence. Juventus centre-back Matthijs de Ligt and Sevilla’s Jules Kounde are options.
Paper Round’s view: Bringing in all four of those players would probably tip the scale well past £150 million but with player sales, the net amount could yet be considerably lower. Boehly is right to want to get off to a good start, as Manchester United have demonstrated what happens when a club consistently falls out of the top four and no longer attracts the best talent.
United tell Ronaldo he is staying
Manchester United have reportedly reacted angrily to recent stories linking Cristiano Ronaldo with a move away from Old Trafford this summer. The Mirror claims that after Ronaldo was offered to Chelsea and Bayern Munich as he grows frustrated with the club’s transfer inertia, the 37-year-old Portuguese striker has been told that he will stay at the club for the last year of his contract.
Paper Round’s view: Ronaldo is United’s best player in terms of both talent and numbers, and there must be a worry at the club that if he leaves, they simply don’t have the administrative competence to find a replacement for him alongside all the other deals they need to do. While Erik ten Hag might not consider him the ideal striker, he is the best he’ll be given.
Liverpool confident over Bellingham
Liverpool remain hopeful that they can land Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham next summer. The Sun states that as their main rivals for the 18-year-old England international are Manchester City, who have now signed Kalvin Phillips, there may be less competition next year. City meanwhile think that Bellingham’s friendship with Erling Haaland may be to their benefit.
Paper Round’s view: Given City will always be able to pay more cash to players than Liverpool, that will give them a huge advantage in most instances. However, Jurgen Klopp is able to offer a little less competition for places, particularly given his ageing midfield, and that might give Bellingham more optimism of developing his ability under another brilliant manager.
Di Maria waiting for Barca
Spanish newspaper Marca reports that Argentine left-sided midfielder Angel Di Maria is willing to wait for the opportunity to sign for Barcelona. The 34-year-old is interesting Xavi Hernandez but he will need to wait for any offers – first choice for the Spanish club is to re-sign Ousmane Dembele, and the back-up option is to bring in Leeds United winger Raphinha.
Paper Round’s view: Given the valuation of Raphinha is reportedly in excess of £50m, and Barcelona are still on rocky financial ground, it seems unlikely that the Brazilian winger would arrive unless they manage to raise funds through player sales. Di Maria was still in decent touch in his last year at Paris Saint-Germain, and may be the next best value target after Dembele.
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