Kylian Mbappe £102m price tag, Haaland agent meets Barcelona and Real Madrid – Chelsea, Liverpool transfer news

ERLING HAALAND'S representatives have held a positive meeting with Barcelona today regarding a potential transfer to the club.

Agent Mino Raiola and dad Alf-Inge Haaland flew to Spain and met with Barca president Joan Laporta as Europe's top clubs vie for the Norwegian's signature.

And no sooner than they were done there did they fly across the country to meet with Real Madrid.


Stay up to date with all the latest football news in our rolling blog…

  • William Pugh


    The captain's armband thrown to the floor by Cristiano Ronaldo in last week’s World Cup qualifier has raised £54,000 for charity.

    The item was collected from the Red Star Stadium pitch in Belgrade and soon found its way online.

    Posted on auction website Limundo, it received huge attention with the proceeds going to charity. The money raised from selling the armband will be sent to Gavril Djurdjevic.

    The six-month-old baby lives in the city of Kragujevac and suffers from spinal muscular atrophy. Humanitarian organisation Together for Life is hoping to raise just over £2million to pay for his treatment.

    After 408 bids, the auction has ended with £54,000 raised from the buyer.

    The armband was picked up from the pitch by a Serbian firefighter, who posed with the piece before the auction closed.

    Credit: EPA
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    Fans will have to take THREE Covid tests to watch the first match back at Wembley.

    Leicester’s FA Cup semi-final with Southampton a fortnight on Sunday will be used as a test event with a 4,000-strong crowd.

    Anyone attending must take a lateral flow test beforehand, provide proof of an official test and take one 24 hours after the game. If everything goes well, around 8,000 fans will be allowed in for Manchester City’s Carabao Cup final against Spurs a week later.

    The matches will hopefully pave the way for 20,000 fans to be at Wembley for Euro 2020. Only those living in the borough of Brent will be allowed to attend the Foxes‘ clash against the Saints.

    And the majority of tickets for the Carabao Cup final will be given to NHS staff as a thank you for their hard work over the pandemic.

    It is understood that local residents would also be in line to attend – putting Spurs supporters at a slight advantage with the game played in the capital.

    Credit: Getty – Contributor
    Credit: Getty
  • William Pugh


    Arsenal are the joint dirtiest team in Premier League history after amassing 98 red cards.

    The Gunners have been an ever-present in the glitzy top flight since it was established in 1992.

    And research shows the North Londoners – who have been crowned Prem champs three times – are top of the tree for most dismissals alongside Everton. Both sides are just two red cards away from a century.

    The Gunners have had numerous hardmen in their ranks over the years, with Patrick Vieira picking up eight red cards during his time in the Prem and Martin Keown given his marching orders six times.

    The Toffees’ figures are inflated by the misdemeanors of Scottish hardman and Carlo Ancelotti‘s coach Duncan Ferguson.

    The former striker is the Prem’s joint most red-carded player with eight dismissals. Newcastle are third on the list with 87 while Chelsea make it into the top four with 79 red cards.

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    Tammy Abraham is back on the comeback trail in his latest bid to beat a persistent ankle injury.

    The Chelsea striker resumed training three days ago as he finally hopes to shrug off the problem which has dogged the second half to his season.

    Abraham did not feature in any of his club’s seven previous games prior to the international break, hampering his chances of proving himself to new boss Thomas Tuchel.

    He has already suffered one setback on the road to recovery when he was forced to abandon training after just five minutes of the warm up.

    The injury, which he suffered against Burnley in January, has taken longer than expected to settle down and ruled him out of the England reckoning over the past fortnight.

    Abraham, 23, is still a way off full fitness and will not be considered for tomorrow’s Premier League clash at home to West Brom. But it is hoped he can play again within the next two weeks with the possibility of being involved in Chelsea’s FA Cup semi final against Manchester City on April 17.

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    Two men have been arrested after police seized packages branded with Cristiano Ronaldo’s logo containing 50kg of cocaine.

    A United States narcotics investigation found £1.5million worth of the illegal drug stashed in a closet in New York. The cocaine was wrapped in packaging marked with the Juventus star’s ‘CR7’ branding.

    Police officers found materials persistent with drug trafficking inside an apartment in Queens, including a loaded firearm, $10,000 in cash, and money counting machines.

    An investigation led to 43-year-old Christopher Jones being observed as he entered the apartment on Monday afternoon, as confirmed by a US Justice Department statement.

    Jones entered the complex empty handed but left with a suitcase and drove away before being arrested.

    The suitcase was found to contain approximately $200,000 in cash. Another man, Wykim Williams, was also arrested and there is no suggestion of a link between the raid and Ronaldo.

  • William Pugh


    Kylian Mbappe could be sold for as little as £102million in the summer with Paris Saint-Germain reportedly growing impatient with the striker.

    The 22-year-old has just one year left on his deal at Parc des Princes, and it remains to be seen whether he will extend his stay despite the club’s best efforts.

    Real Madrid are understood to be weighing up a move for the World Cup winner with boss Zinedine Zidane known to be a huge admirer of his French compatriot.

    And Le Parisien have stated that Mbappe could be heading closer to leaving Les Parisiens with the board losing patience with his contract renewal.

    They claim that they have lowered their asking price to between £102m-£128m for Mbappe should they decide to cash in on him.

    The former Monaco ace hinted that he could quit PSG following France’s three World Cup qualifiers over the international break. He declared that he is growing increasingly infuriated over negative headlines in the French press.

    Credit: Reuters
  • William Pugh

    'IT WASN'T ME'

    Scott McTominay has revealed he told team-mate Sergio Romero to speak to Lionel Messi about swapping shirts with him.

    The Barcelona superstar was given a bloodied nose during a Champions League quarter-final match against Man Utd in 2019, an injury he mistakenly thought was caused by McTominay.

    In actual fact, the busted up Argentine had been on the end of a Chris Smalling elbow. And McTominay used Messi’s compatriot Romero to ensure he received Messi’s coveted shirt at full time.

    The Scot told the Man Utd club website: “So, whenever we played against him for Barcelona [in 2009], Chris Smalling elbowed him and he’s got blood coming out of his nose. And he thought it was me.

    “Because I said to Sergio Romero, ‘please can you ask Messi to get his shirt?’. Sergio comes back in and said, ‘Oh, he thinks you were the one who elbowed him on the halfway line’.

    “I said, ‘No, no, no, no – tell him it wasn’t me, so make sure I get that shirt because that’s going in my bedroom’. So he knows it wasn’t me now. Sorry Chrissy, but he was the one who roughed him up a bit.”

    Credit: AFP or licensors
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    Former Inter Milan and Porto star Fredy Guarin has been arrested in Colombia after allegedly assaulting his parents.

    Alarming footage was posted on social media of the midfielder angrily clashing with police as they detained him. Guarin, 34, is seen in a video released by BluRadio Colombia being dragged out of a house in Envigado, north-western Colombia.

    What appears to be blood is clearly visible on his hands and down his jeans. He attempted to wrestle away from a police officer’s grip before standing shirtless while a search was carried out.

    A statement from police director general Jorge Vargas outlined an allegation that the footballer had assaulted his parents.

    He said: “When the police arrived, they found personal injuries had occurred inside a house where the son was involved in a fight with his parents. The parents asked for assistance so that this person was taken away.”

    Police also announced, in statements seen via Clarin, allegations that Guarin attacked officers and medical personnel after his detention. The former Colombia international had returned to his home country in January to sign for Bogota club Millonarios.

    Credit: Twitter
    Credit: Twitter
  • William Pugh


    West Brom boss Sam Allardyce has signalled his intentions to keep Conor Gallagher at the club if they avoid relegation into the Championship.

    The 21-year-old has impressed at the Hawthorns since joining from Chelsea on loan in September, with the player featuring in 25 games in all competitions.

    Speaking ahead of Saturday’s clash against the Blues, Allardyce told reporters: “If we stay in the Premier League, I’d hope he’d be here next season not at Chelsea.

    “I think he’d be better off having another season with us rather than the competition and size of Chelsea’s squad. I think his learning and development level has been improved. I’ve seen a good player since I’ve been here.

    “I heard about how good he was before I came and think every day and every game he plays in the Premier League he gains more and more experience. When you lose more than you win, which he’s experiencing for the first time, it makes you tougher, it makes you more determined.

    “And at such a young age to get these disappointments week in and week out could only stand him in good stead about improving his career. He has been a good asset for us.”

    Credit: Getty
  • William Pugh


    Erling Haaland's dad reportedly hid in a TOILET for 30 minutes to try and keep transfer talks with Barcelona a secret.

    The Borussia Dortmund striker’s father Alf Inge was spotted at Barcelona El-Prat Airport on Thursday morning with agent Mino Raiola.

    But according to AS, the German’s transfer talks were supposed to go undetected. The plan was for Raiola to exit the airport, drag the cameras away and allow Alf-Inge to leave without hassle.

    But that never materialised as the ex-Manchester City defender was caught by the press, leading to wild speculation his son may be on his way to the Nou Camp.

    However, Alf-Inge and Raiola also reportedly flew to Madrid for talks with Real over a potential deal. And there are also said to be three other clubs in the running to sign the Norwegian sensation.

    Man City, Manchester United and Chelsea are all said to be in the running for the 20-year-old prodigy.

    Credit: Instagram @erling.haaland
  • William Pugh


    Inter Milan have slapped a £102million price tag on Romelu Lukaku, according to reports.

    Chelsea and Manchester City are among a number of clubs said to be interested in the Belgian.

    But the Italians have valued him north of £100m in a bid to deter potential suitors, according to the Mail.

    Lukaku has scored 25 times for the Serie A leaders this season.

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    TOP OG

    West Ham are reportedly ready to extend Angelo Ogbonna's contarct.

    The Italian has been a rock for the Hammers and – despite being 33 – the East Londoners will extend his deal by at least a year, according to the Athletic.

    Ogbonna's current deal expires in 2022 but West Ham will move to secure his services for at least another season.

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    Old Trafford’s group managing director Richard Arnold said : “We are proud that players of all ethnicities, religions and nationalities have pulled on the Manchester United jersey.

    “We challenge our fans, and indeed fans of every club, to watch this and think about their own favourite memories, their top teams and their most celebrated players.

    “How different would those memories be without the diversity of some of the best players in the world who have graced our game and our club?

    “Sadly, footballers across the country continue to receive abuse online, seemingly without fear of censure.

    “United has been, and always will be, a club for all.”

  • William Pugh


    Lionel Messi has reportedly issued Barcelona president Joan Laporta with a number of demands it will take for him to pen a new deal at the Nou Camp.

    Manchester City have been heavily linked with a move for the six-time Ballon d’Or winner where the Argentine international would reunite with Pep Guardiola.

    And Eurosport have confirmed that Messi has been in contact with club president Laporta.

    They state that the four-time Champions League winner is open to extending his stay in Catalonia, but only if his requests are fulfilled.

    One of the demands that Messi is seeking is Barcelona to make a marquee signing at the end of the season. And the club could be ready to bring Borussia Dortmund marksman Erling Haaland to Spain after they held talks with the player’s dad and agent.

    Messi is also keen for Barca to have renewed trust in youth, where he wants Ansu Fati, Pedri and Ilaix Moriba to be allowed to develop. He is also desperate to have an open relationship with boss Ronald Koeman and technical secretary Ramon Planes.

    Credit: Getty
  • William Pugh


    Manchester United have launched a huge campaign against social media abuse.

    The 'See Red' movement urges fans to report any abuse they see online.

    Captain Harry Maguire has also backed the campaign and reminded fans: "Your inaction has a consequence."

  • William Pugh


    Liverpool have been linked with a shock move for ex-Manchester United forward Memphis Depay.

    Jurgen Klopp’s side have struggled for goals since the turn of the year as question marks begin to be asked about their long-time front three Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mo Salah.

    And while Diogo Jota has come in this season to freshen things up in an attacking sense, the Reds are thought to be seeking more options in the transfer window.

    According to Marca, Liverpool are considering a bid for Depay, who has impressed since joining Lyon in 2017.

    In 169 appearances for the French side, he has scored 69 times and provided a further 52 assists.

    And with his contract coming to an end this summer, Klopp’s men could be poised to land him on a free transfer.

    Credit: EPA
  • William Pugh


    Everton youngster Thierry Small is reportedly willing to snub offers from Manchester United, Arsenal and Brighton in his pursuit of first team football.

    The Toffees have offered the full-back a three-year deal but he is reluctant to sign given the lack of first team opportunities, according to the Express.

    Talks between Small's representatives and Everton are ongoing.

    But Brighton, Leeds and Brentford are said to be waiting in the wings and are willing to offer the 16-year-old a pathway to first team football.

  • William Pugh


    Lucas Torreira wants to move Boca Juniors after his mother Viviana Di Pascua, 53, died from Covid last week.

    The midfielder is on loan at Atletico Madrid from Arsenal but is keen to move back to his native South America.

    He said: "It’s not violent emotion or a crazy decision for my mother. I’ve always said that I wanted to play for Boca. I’m dying to play for Boca and I’ve always said it. If not now, in June.

    "The night my mother died one of the first to receive the news was my agent. I don’t want to play in Europe anymore, I want to play for Boca.

    “I want to be close to my home, my family. My contract is with Arsenal and I’m on loan at Atleti but I want to go to Boca. I hope that the clubs agree. I haven’t had a good time personally for two years, without continuity.

    "Arsenal hurt me and Atletico don’t play me as I want. I just want to play for Boca. I’ve already made the decision. I’m doing it for my old man.”

  • William Pugh


    Eddie Howe has moved closer to being named Celtic’s new boss after meeting kingmaker Dermot Desmond.

    SunSport revealed yesterday that Howe is eager to take charge at Parkhead after being sounded out for the job. We told that Howe had reached out to his trusted contacts with connections to the club as he weighed up a shock move to Glasgow.

    Now we can break the news that the former Bournemouth boss has held face-to-face talks with billionaire Desmond over the prospect of succeeding Neil Lennon. Joining them for the hush-hush London summit was outgoing Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell, who will leave his role at the end of the season.

    It’s understood Howe, who worked a miracle at Bournemouth, taking them from near-League Two oblivion to the Premier League over two spells, is now the top choice to take on Steven Gerrard’s title-winning Rangers next season.

    And his appointment could even be announced as early as next week, with the Celtic board coming under increasing pressure from fans to seal a deal ahead of season-ticket renewals being sent out.

    The potential deal for Howe could see him earn close to Brendan Rodgers’ bumper £2.3million salary.

    Credit: Reuters
  • William Pugh


    Chelsea are leading the way in the pursuit of Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero, according to reports.

    The Sky Blues confirmed earlier this week that the 32-year-old Argentine will leave the Etihad when his contract expires this summer.

    And now a host of Europe's top clubs are being linked with the legendary Man City forward's signature.

    Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich are among those who have been touted as possible options for Aguero.

    But according to The Mail, it is Chelsea who are in pole position to secure his services at the end of the season. The Blues were interested in bringing Aguero to Stamford Bridge before he joined City more than ten years ago.

    And they may finally be able to get their hands on the South American goalscorer, providing they are willing to pay his £13million per year salary.

  • William Pugh


    Erling Haaland only wants a move to Real Madrid or Barcelona, Spanish reports say.

    It would come as a massive transfer blow to Chelsea, Manchester United and City, who are all linked with the Borussia Dortmund striker.

    Haaland's agent, Mino Raiola, and dad, Alfie, were in Spain on Thursday to speak with rivals Barca and Real Madrid.

    And according to Catalunya Radio, Raiola told Nou Camp president Joan Laporta, the Dortmund forward is only interested in a move to LaLiga.

    But, it is claimed Laporta also explained they prefer to sign the 20-year-old next season due to his release clause.

    Haaland is available for just £65million in the summer of 2022 per the stipulation. But any side looking to sign the Norwegian in the next window can be expected to pay close to £150m.

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    Arsenal have reportedly stepped up their interest in RB Leipzig winger Christopher Nkunku as they prepare to make a £27million bid this summer.

    The 23-year-old French forward has continued his superb spell with the Bundesliga side this season, scoring six times and assisting five more in the league.

    His stellar 2020-21 campaign comes after he managed 13 assists last season, with only Thomas Muller and Jadon Sancho providing more in Germany’s top flight.

    And according to Sky Sports, his relentless consistency for Leipzig has caught the eye of Mikel Arteta. The Arsenal boss will be looking to bolster his attacking options in the summer as uncertainty continues over the future of a number of his players.

    But Nkunku will not be whisked away from Leipzig easily as the German club are currently experiencing interest in a number of their top players.

    Dayot Upamecano has already signed for Bayern Munich, with his centre-back partner Ibrahima Konate also heavily linked with Liverpool. Club captain Marcel Sabitzer is also rumoured to be considering a move away, with Tottenham said to be interested in him.

    Credit: AP
  • William Pugh


    Gareth Southgate will be tempted to revert to a back three after seeing this week how easily a back four can be damaged by one defensive lapse.

    But picking an extra central defender limits the team’s attacking options and sends out negative signals to the opposition.

    Pickford definitely returns in goal because of his superior distribution and Stones stays at centre-half despite his propensity to occasionally switch off.

    I was tempted to omit Jordan Henderson as there is no guarantee he will be completely match fit in June following his long lay-off.

    But there is a real lack of midfield leadership without the Liverpool captain and even if he isn’t ready to start at the Euros his big match experience will be crucial to the squad.

    Jadon Sancho and Mason Greenwood haven’t done enough in recent months to warrant a place in my squad although you could argue that having Foden, Grealish, Mount and Maddison ahead of Ward-Prowse or Winks is a bit too gung-ho.

    SQUAD: Pickford, Pope, Henderson, Trippier, James, Walker, Maguire, Stones, Keane, Chilwell, Shaw, Rice, Phillips, Henderson, Bellingham, Mount, Foden, Grealish, Maddison, Kane, Sterling, Rashford, Calvert-Lewin.

  • William Pugh


    England are going to win, they need to utilise their best assets – attacking.

    The more forward options, the better. No places for Walker, Coady, Phillips or Shaw in my squad, with Trippier the cover full-back allowing me to go with the youth and exciting potential of Saka and Bellingham.

    Toughest cut is Shaw – ironic as he went to the 2014 World Cup as a teenager instead of Ashley Cole. But Saka is too good to omit.

    I need to get Grealish’s creativity into the side and am backing Mount and Foden to work back alongside Rice when required.

    SQUAD: Pickford, Pope, Henderson; Alexander-Arnold, James, Stones, Maguire, Mings, Chilwell, Trippier, Rice, Henderson, Mount, Bellingham, Foden, Saka, Ward-Prowse, Kane, Rashford, Sterling, Sancho, Calvert-Lewin, Grealish.

  • William Pugh


    Gareth Southgate should revert to a back three with wing-backs for Euro2020. And I would still start Trent Alexander-Arnold.

    My formation would be different if Jordan Henderson was definitely going to be fit and ready but this seems unlikely.

    But the current central midfield is not experienced enough to give protection to the defence so I would have three at the back and use Alexander-Arnold’s attacking ability along with Ben Chilwell’s.

    We keep talking about playing to our attacking strengths. But like Portugal in 2016, we have to concentrate on not conceding first and the rest should follow.

    Up front, Phil Foden gets in ahead of Marcus Rashford. Jude Bellingham should scrape into Southgate’s squad of 23 as he offers something different.

    I don’t think Henderson will be 100 per cent fit and on too many occasions – although not the last World Cup – England have taken injured players.

    Jack Grealish, Jadon Sancho and Eric Dier, because of his versatility, all squeeze in. No place for James Maddison, Bukayo Saka, Kieran Trippier or Reece James.

    SQUAD: Pickford, Pope, Henderson, Alexander-Arnold, Walker, Stones, Maguire, Dier, Mings, Chilwell, Shaw, Mount, Rice, Ward-Prowse, Bellingham, Sancho, Foden, Grealish, Kane, Sterling, Rashford, Calvert-Lewin, Ings.

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