Aguero to STAY in Premier League?
Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero could be set to stay in the Premier League once his contract at the Etihad expires this summer, with the Mail reporting that a shock move to Chelsea could be on the cards. Earlier this week, City confirmed that the 32-year-old’s 10-year stay in Manchester will come to an end in June. Aguero is now free to enter contract negotiations with foreign clubs, but the Mail state that “his preference would be to remain in the Premier League”, with Chelsea interested in bringing the Argentine to Stamford Bridge. Barcelona, Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are also exploring the possibility of signing Aguero this summer.
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Paper Round’s view: Is this Chelsea’s chance to get revenge for Frank Lampard ending up at Manchester City? It genuinely seems like west London could be a realistic destination for Aguero. The Mail seem to believe that the 32-year-old wants to stay in England and – when you rule out the unrealistic moves – it leaves Chelsea… and maybe Arsenal. The Gunners are unlikely to sign a striker, with both Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette at the club, but Chelsea are clearly in the search for a new number nine. The Blues seem to be prioritising Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland, but Aguero would be a solid back-up plan for the short-term.
Kane is going nowhere this summer
Harry Kane is set to be priced out of a transfer this summer, with The Sun stating that the Tottenham Hotspur hierarchy are “refusing to let him join another Premier League team”. Spurs chairman Daniel Levy will not allow his star striker to join a domestic rival, despite interest from both Manchester United and Manchester City. This means that a move to a foreign club is Kane’s only option. Tottenham will demand £175 million for the 27-year-old, which is likely to put off the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona as both clubs have been “financially ravaged by Covid”.
Paper Round’s view: Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy is a notoriously tough negotiator, so this report could definitely have some legs. There’s no way the club would want to see Kane move to another Premier League side. Obviously all the money is in the English top flight, so this puts Spurs in a stronger situation if they want to keep Kane. The coronavirus pandemic has had a huge financial impact on clubs in Europe and if a club were looking to spend £175 million on a striker, you’d expect that younger options like Erling Haaland or Kylian Mbappe would be higher on their wishlist. Kane is unlikely to kick up a fuss to leave his boyhood club, so it looks like he is set to stay in north London for the foreseeable future.
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Man Utd’s centre-back search continues
Manchester United are keen to sign a new centre-back this summer, with the MEN reporting the club’s interest in Brighton defender Ben White. The 23-year-old – who has also attracted attention from Liverpool and Leeds United – is said to be “open” to an Old Trafford move this summer. However, the Seagulls won’t be willing to part with their “prized asset” for anything less than £35 million. The MEN also state that Manchester United have added Real Madrid’s Raphael Varane and Villarreal’s Pau Torres to their list of centre-back targets for the upcoming transfer window.
Paper Round’s view: It’s clear that Manchester United are making a new centre-back signing their priority this summer. The Red Devils spent £85m on club captain Harry Maguire, but have struggled to find a top-quality centre-back to pair him with. White would be a solid addition and he has proven himself comfortable during his debut Premier League season. £35m isn’t an excessive asking price for a highly-rated, home-grown centre-back either. You’d think that United would prefer to sign a player with the calibre of Varane, but White might be a more realistic option at this current time.
Maitland-Niles plans to move on
Ainsley Maitland-Niles will look to move from Arsenal at the end of the season, according to the Telegraph. The 23-year-old is currently on loan at West Bromwich Albion, where he is playing in his preferred position of central midfield. However, Maitland-Niles has accepted that potential suitors believe he has the ability to become a top-level right-back. Wolves, Leicester City and Southampton are all interested in the possibility of signing the versatile England international, with Manchester United reportedly keen as well. Arsenal are looking at Inter Milan’s Achraf Hakimi as a potential summer signing amid the expected departures of Maitland-Niles and Hector Bellerin.
Paper Round’s view: It will be a shame to see Maitland-Niles leave Arsenal. It’s never nice to see an academy graduate leave their parent club, especially one that is still highly rated. Maitland-Niles clearly has the makings of a top player – there’s a reason why those clubs are interested in him. The 23-year-old’s future may lie at right-back, but he was never given a chance in centre-midfield at the Emirates – even when they struggled in that particular area – so you can understand his frustration. On the other hand, selling him and Bellerin would raise a decent amount of transfer funds and Hakimi would be a sensational signing for the Gunners.
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