Rumour Has It: Manchester City to turn to Kane if Haaland bid fails

By Sports Desk March 31, 2021

Manchester City will turn to Harry Kane if they cannot land Erling Haaland.

It is widely expected City will go hard to sign the Norway striker, who is being pursued by numerous big clubs.

Barcelona, Real Madrid and Chelsea are all interested in the Borussia Dortmund man.

 

TOP STORY - KANE IN CITY'S SIGHTS

The Times reports that if City fail to win the race for Haaland's signature they will consider making an offer for Tottenham talisman Kane.

Kane is seven years older than Haaland but has a proven Premier League goal scoring record.

City have already confirmed Sergio Aguero's exit at the end of the season and are in the market to bolster their forward ranks.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Daily Mail is reporting that City's main priorities in the transfer market are to sign Haaland and Aston Villa playmaker Jack Grealish, as they turn to a younger generation of talent. The duo are expected to cost £200 million.

- Football Insider has reported Lionel Messi has requested FC Barcelona sign countryman Aguero as part of his own negotiations to stay with the Catalans. Mundo Deportivo claims Aguero is not a priority signing for Barca, with Memphis Depay, Romelu Lukaku and Haaland top of the list.

- Gianluigi Donnarumma has been linked with a host of big clubs and Sky Sport Italia are reporting that contract talks with AC Milan are at a standstill. Milan are allegedly offering €7million per-year deal but the goalkeeper wants more.

- Voetbalkrant are reporting Southampton are interested in Anderlecht's teenage defender Marco Kana.

- Ex-Borussia Dortmund and Hertha Berlin coach Lucien Favre is interested in becoming Celtic's new coach, according to the Daily Mail.

- Fichajes reports Leeds United's Rodrigo is unhappy in England and wants to return to Spain, with Real Betis and Sevilla in the mix.

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  • Deschamps reveals Dembele calf worry as Areola gets France start Deschamps reveals Dembele calf worry as Areola gets France start

    France boss Didier Deschamps could be without Ousmane Dembele for Sunday's Nations League clash with Denmark after the Barcelona winger reported a calf problem.

    The game in Copenhagen will see Deschamps make a number of changes, with the trip coming just two months before the teams meet again in the World Cup group stage.

    France are eager to get the win, as that would guarantee they avoid relegation from the top tier of the Nations League, but Deschamps will not push anyone into playing.

    "Ousmane felt discomfort in a calf and will train separately," said Deschamps on Saturday evening.

    "We will review after the session. I will make changes, but I won't decide tonight. I will wait for the medical return and the feelings of the players. There will be changes, but I won't tell you how many."

    France and Denmark will be joined in Group D at Qatar 2022 by Australia and Tunisia, and they are due to go head-to-head on November 26 in the second round of games.

    Denmark got the better of Deschamps' side at the Stade de France in June in their first Nations League encounter, with Andreas Cornelius hitting a double after Karim Benzema had put the hosts ahead.

    According to Deschamps, there will be little to be gained on Sunday with a view to the World Cup game, though.

    "The only advantage is for players who are there and who will have the possibility of starting or coming on," he said. "I'm not going to get any particular benefit from it otherwise.

    "In Qatar, it will be another game, but the teams will know each other well, that's true."

    With Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan coming off injured in the 2-0 win against Austria on Thursday, West Ham's Alphonse Areola has got the nod to start against the Danes.

    Areola came into the fray for the second half against Austria, with first choice Huge Lloris out through injury.

    The 29-year-old former Paris Saint-Germain stopper has made five appearances for West Ham this season, albeit with four of those coming in the Europa Conference League and just one in the Premier League.

    "He will start," Deschamps said. "I see goalkeepers starting in the national team and not in the club. Alphonse has been more or less a starter. Every time he plays, he performs well. Alphonse is there because he has quality."

  • Varane says 'concerned' France stars are keeping tabs on Pogba saga Varane says 'concerned' France stars are keeping tabs on Pogba saga

    Raphael Varane confirmed players in the France camp are concerned after Paul Pogba's brother was charged and detained over an alleged extortion attempt against the midfielder.

    Pogba is absent from the France squad at present due to injury, and his chances of playing at the World Cup hang in the balance.

    However, it has been off-field matters that have grabbed the attention recently regarding the Juventus player.

    An investigation was opened in August into allegations Pogba was the target of an extortion plot by brother Mathias and childhood friends demanding a €13million sum.

    Mathias, who is a free agent after a spell with French fourth-tier side Belfort came to an end in April, threatened to share "explosive revelations" in a video posted on social media.

    The 32-year-old has denied taking part in extortion attempts against his brother, but he and four others were recently charged in relation to the matter.

    New videos from Mathias Pogba were released on Friday, making various claims that were not substantiated, with the story remaining high on the news agenda in France.

    Asked whether the France players are talking about the Pogba issue, Varane said: "Unfortunately there is lots of non-sporting news at the moment. We try to be focused on the pitch.

    "As a player, that is what must take precedence, but we are not insensitive to what is happening around us. Especially when it involves someone you know. We also feel concerned in a certain way.

    "Internally, we're going very well. We are focused on our objective, and we try to be as professional as possible."

    Varane and Pogba were club-mates at Manchester United last season, before Pogba moved on at the end of his Old Trafford contract to embark on a second spell at Juventus.

    France head coach Didier Deschamps said he would not be distracted by external events, as he prepares his team to face Denmark on Sunday in the Nations League.

    "There is nothing and no one to disturb my tranquillity," Deschamps said. "If there are fewer non-sporting debates, it is better."

    Varane is set to face United team-mate Christian Eriksen in Copenhagen, and he continues to be impressed by how the former Tottenham and Inter playmaker has returned to football following the cardiac arrest he suffered at last year's European Championship.

    Acquired from Brentford in the off-season, Eriksen has quickly become a key figure at United, and defender Varane said: "He managed to integrate quickly into the squad.

    "He has a lot of qualities. We are very happy to see him playing at this level after what he has been through. He's a player that I appreciate."

  • Spinazzola reveals he opted out of Italy duty for individual training Spinazzola reveals he opted out of Italy duty for individual training

    Roma's Leonardo Spinazzola has revealed he chose to miss Italy's Nations League fixtures to conduct individual training this month, as he continues his recovery from a serious Achilles tendon injury.

    Spinazzola enjoyed a breakthrough on the international stage during Italy's successful Euro 2020 campaign last year, impressing as an attacking left-back for Roberto Mancini's side.

    However, he suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon during the Azzurri's quarter-final win over Belgium in July 2021, returning to feature in just three Serie A matches before the end of last season.

    The 29-year-old has appeared in all seven of the Giallorossi's league games this campaign, but revealed his previous injury continues to have an impact after opting to skip Italy's Nations League matches against England and Hungary.

    "Not to go to Coverciano was my request to Roberto Mancini, the coach understood and allowed me these 10 days to get back in shape and do specific work for the calf," he told the club's media channels.

    "I think mine is one of the worst injuries for a player, especially given my characteristics. I still lack some support and speed."

    Roma are four points adrift of early Serie A pace-setters Napoli and Atalanta, but the arrival of Paulo Dybala and influence of coach Jose Mourinho have seen them tipped as potential title challengers.

    Spinazzola spoke highly of the former Chelsea and Real Madrid boss, adding: "We are with him, whatever he says, we do. If he told us to go to war, we would do it. 

    "That's right, he has this gift. Then everything he says, for the most part, comes true.

    "But he is very calm in training. I don't know how he was in the past, but he's really calm. Sometimes he just observes from above. 

    "He likes to observe how you move, how you move your body, your body language, he observes a lot of these things."

    Roma were beaten by Atalanta in their last league outing, and will face a huge test of their Serie A credentials when they travel to another of Mourinho's former clubs Inter on October 1.

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