Dries Mertens has signed a new contract with Napoli to tie him to the club until 2022 and end transfer speculation.

The Belgium international was seemingly set to depart Stadio San Paolo with his previous deal set to expire at the end of the season.

His contractual situation led to reports of apparent discussions with Chelsea and Inter, the latter of whom were said to be offering a significantly better wage than the package put together by Napoli.

But the 33-year-old is claimed to have reached an agreement to remain at Napoli in May, with the club making the official announcement just four days after Mertens overtook Marek Hamsik as their all-time leading goalscorer.

A Napoli statement read: "Napoli is pleased to announce that it has agreed terms with Dries Mertens over a new contract with the club.

"Mertens has signed for a further two years with the option to extend for a third."

Club president Aurelio De Laurentiis added on his official Twitter account: "Pleased to be together for a long time to come – long live Dries!"

Mertens moved to Napoli in 2013 after an eye-catching two-year spell with PSV and has since scored 122 goals in all competitions, including 90 in Serie A.

His most prolific single league campaign was with Napoli in 2016-17, when the forward netted 28 times in Serie A.

Manchester United know what they will need to pay for Aston Villa star Jack Grealish, and they may look elsewhere.

Grealish has been linked with a move to Old Trafford after an impressive campaign with Villa.

However, United could opt for a cheaper alternative.

 

TOP STORY – VILLA WANT £80M FOR MAN UTD TARGET GREALISH

Aston Villa want at least £80million for Jack Grealish amid links to Manchester United, according to the Daily Mail.

The report says Villa also have hope of keeping the attacker if they can avoid Premier League relegation.

Grealish, 24, has scored seven goals and provided six assists in 26 Premier League games this season.

 

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- Could Manchester United look elsewhere? The Sun reports United are eyeing Bayer Leverkusen forward Leon Bailey as a cheaper alternative to Grealish and Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho.

- Staying at Old Trafford and France Football claims Manchester United have made contact with Willian, who is coming out of contract at Chelsea.

- Miralem Pjanic's Juventus future seems unclear. Sport reports the midfielder is moving away from the Serie A club amid links to Barcelona and Chelsea.

- Perhaps Juventus and Chelsea could be set for a swap deal. The Sun says Chelsea are set to be offered Adrien Rabiot and Federico Bernardeschi for Jorginho and Marcos Alonso.

- Another player who has been linked to Manchester United is Birmingham City teenager Jude Bellingham. However, BILD reports Borussia Dortmund have reached an agreement with the 16-year-old midfielder, but are having problems with the transfer fee.

- On loan at Borussia Dortmund since 2018, Achraf Hakimi is due to return to Real Madrid. However, AS reports Bayern Munich are eager to sign the full-back and are willing to offer a sizeable transfer fee and salary.

Timo Werner remains in RB Leipzig's plans for the Champions League despite reports he informed the club he wants to move to Chelsea before the competition restarts.

Leipzig eliminated Tottenham and booked their place in the Champions League quarter-finals before the 2019-20 season was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Europe's premier club competition is expected to continue in August once the major domestic seasons have been completed.

According to a report from German newspaper BILD on Monday, Werner has told Leipzig he wants to join Chelsea, who are reportedly set to activate a €53million release clause in his contract, following the conclusion of the Bundesliga season this month.

However, Leipzig boss Julian Nagelsmann told a news conference he still considers the Germany striker available for Champions League selection.

"He is currently, as usual, in my plans to play the Champions League. He is our player and has not signed for anyone else," said Nagelsmann.

"His important to RB Leipzig is extraordinary. He has an incredibly good goalscoring rate, which you always hope for from a striker."

The transfer window in England will open at the conclusion of the Premier League season in July, meaning Werner could move to Stamford Bridge ahead of the resumption of the Champions League.

UEFA is yet to clarify rules regarding transfers of such nature, with it unclear whether Werner would be able to represent Chelsea in the competition.

Nagelsmann only plans to deal with that situation when a deal is on the table, saying: "Then both parties will sit down and see what happens next. There are no regulations at the moment."

Leipzig face relegation-threatened Fortuna Dusseldorf in the Bundesliga on Wednesday and a win could guarantee their place in next season's Champions League.

However, they will be without attacker Yussuf Poulsen for the rest of the campaign with a ligament injury, while the possibility of Dayot Upamecano returning to the line-up will depend on his performance in training.

"Yussi will not be used this season," said Nagelsmann. "If [Upamecano] goes full throttle, he will play. If he doesn't go full throttle, he won't play."

Kai Havertz leaving the Bundesliga for the Premier League has emerged as a strong possibility.

Chelsea and Manchester United are reportedly vying for the Bayer Leverkusen attacker's signature.

However, Bayern Munich could keep the Germany international in his homeland.

 

TOP STORY – BAYERN IN POLE POSITION FOR HAVERTZ

Bayern Munich are favourites to sign Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz, according to the Telegraph.

The race is heating up for Havertz, who has been heavily linked to Premier League trio Chelsea, Manchester United and Liverpool.

Real Madrid are also reportedly interested but Bundesliga champions Bayern are in pole position to bring the Germany international to Bavaria as they also look to sign Manchester City's Leroy Sane.

 

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- Calciomercato says Milan are determined to lure Madrid forward Luka Jovic to San Siro. The Serbia international has struggled since swapping Eintracht Frankfurt for Madrid at the start of the season. Madrid want between €45 and €50million for Jovic and the report claims Milan could look to sell Rade Krunic, Lucas Paqueta, Andre Silva, Suso and Mateo Musacchio to raise funds.

- The front page of Tuesday's Diario AS claims Bayern will offer Achraf Hakimi a "galactic" salary to prise the Morocco international from Madrid. The full-back has spent the past two seasons on loan at Borussia Dortmund.

United are leading the chase for Watford defender Pervis Estupinan amid interest from Tottenham, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid, according to the Express. The Ecuadorian is on loan from Osasuna.

Juventus and Barcelona have entered the chase for Lazio star Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, reports Corriere dello Sport. Milinkovic-Savic has been heavily linked to Paris Saint-Germain, as well as United.

- Sport says Pedro's proposed move from Chelsea to Roma has collapsed amid an internal fallout in the Italian capital. The veteran forward has now been offered to Valencia.

Chelsea will finalise a deal to sign RB Leipzig and Germany forward Timo Werner this week, the Evening Standard claims. Liverpool and United were also eyeing Werner.

- Sport Bild journalist Christian Falk reports PSG are interested in signing Bayern's Lucas Hernandez to replace departing defender Thiago Silva. PSG will not renew Silva's contract in the French capital.

- Falk also says Dortmund have not received any official offers for star Jadon Sancho, who has been linked to United, City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Madrid and Barca.

Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi says police have confirmed he is facing no further action over an accusation of rape.

Police conducted an investigation after the allegation was made against England international Hudson-Odoi in May.

The 19-year-old issued a statement on Instagram to thank those who stood by him and said he plans "to be the best role model that I can be" from now on.

"At a time where there are bigger things happening in the world right now, you may also be aware of serious allegations that were made against me," Hudson-Odoi said.

"I have stayed silent and assisted the police fully throughout their enquiries, as I knew the day would soon come when my name would be cleared.

"Following a full and thorough investigation, the police have confirmed they will take no further action.

"I would like to use this platform to thank everyone who has stood by my side and supported me during this difficult period.

"I have learned that being a footballer and playing for one of the best clubs in the world comes with great responsibility, and going forward I will try to use my platform as a Chelsea player to be the best role model that I can be."

Jadon Sancho's future could be resolved sooner rather than later.

The England international is tipped to return to his homeland after leaving Manchester City for Borussia Dortmund in 2017.

Premier League leaders Liverpool are reportedly at the front of the queue for the 20-year-old attacker.

 

TOP STORY – REDS IN POLE POSITION FOR SANCHO

Liverpool are leading the race to sign Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho, according to Le10 Sport.

Sancho is a player in demand, the former Manchester City youngster linked with a return to England via Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool.

Real Madrid are also reportedly interested, but Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool appear to be favourites to land the England international if Sadio Mane leaves Anfield.

 

ROUND-UP

- Calciomercato claims United are considering a move for Lazio striker Ciro Immobile. The Italy international has scored a Serie A-high 27 goals this season amid links to Liverpool and Napoli.

Chelsea are not close to reaching an agreement over Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz, says The Athletic. Chelsea have emerged as favourites to sign Havertz, who is also reportedly wanted by United, Liverpool, Madrid and Barcelona. But Chelsea – who are set to bring RB Leipzig's Timo Werner to Stamford Bridge – are apparently nowhere near matching Leverkusen's asking price.

- The Independent reports Dortmund are set to beat United to Birmingham City teenager Jude Bellingham. The 16-year-old is coveted by Dortmund and United, however, the Bundesliga side are viewed as the more attractive option to give the wonderkid game time.

- Could Dries Mertens leave Napoli for Barcelona? Mertens' contract is set to expire, though the Belgium forward has been tipped to sign an extension. Het Nieuwsblad says Barca could turn to the Napoli star if they are unable to prise Lautaro Martinez from Inter.

Chelsea believe Champions League football will convince Leicester City's Ben Chilwell to snub Manchester City for the London club, according to the Daily Mail. Chelsea have been linked to another full-back – France Football claims the Blues are eyeing Paris Saint-Germain's Layvin Kurzawa, who is available on a free transfer and wanted by the likes of Atletico Madrid, Juventus and Inter.

- Tuttosport says Inter are targeting Nice centre-back Malang Sarr. The 21-year-old has also been linked to Pep Guardiola's City.

- According to The Telegraph, Barca are prepared to pay a portion of Philippe Coutinho's wage to help the Brazilian leave Camp Nou. Tottenham and Newcastle United are possible destinations.

Liverpool are eyeing a double transfer raid on Wolves for stars Ruben Neves and Adama Traore, says The Sun.

Virgil van Dijk is set to extend his deal at Liverpool, while Lautaro Martinez could reportedly push for his move to Barcelona.

Van Dijk, 28, is widely regarded as one of the world's best defenders and he seems primed to stay put after starring at Anfield.

Meanwhile, Barca's pursuit of Martinez continues.

 

TOP STORY – VAN DIJK TO SIGN FIVE-YEAR LIVERPOOL CONTRACT

Van Dijk will sign a five-year deal worth £57million at Liverpool, according to The Sun.

The report says the Netherlands international will become the highest-paid player in the club's history.

Van Dijk finished second to Barcelona star Lionel Messi in the 2019 Ballon d'Or and is on track to help Liverpool win their first league title in 30 years.

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- Talk around Martinez's future continues. Sport reports Barcelona will press Inter and the forward will also push for a move to Camp Nou.

- Inter could be looking for a replacement if Martinez decides to leave. CalcioMercato reports they are considering Fiorentina star Federico Chiesa as the Argentina international's replacement.

- Another forward Inter have been linked to is Edinson Cavani, who is coming out of contract at Paris Saint-Germain. But La Gazzetta dello Sport reports Cavani wants €12m per year, which it says it €3m more than Inter are willing to pay.

- There is also uncertainty over Arturo Vidal's future at Barcelona. The midfielder has been linked with an exit as his contract expires next year, but Mundo Deportivo reports the Chile international has no interest in discussing his future until August.

- Hector Bellerin has a deal at Arsenal until 2023, but there is some talk about his future. The Mirror reports the 25-year-old is a target for Inter this close season.

- Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma is apparently attracting some interest. According to the Daily Express, Everton want to sign the 25-year-old, who has also been linked to Tottenham.

Sven-Goran Eriksson wants more black coaches in football's top jobs and he sees no reason why former England defenders Sol Campbell and Ashley Cole cannot be in such roles.

With a greater focus on racial inequality across society following the death of George Floyd, attention has again shifted to the absence of black representation in football's managerial circles.

Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling this week claimed there was "no representation of us in the coaching staffs".

Sterling suggested Campbell and Cole "haven't been given the right opportunities" as coaches, in contrast to Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard and Rangers boss Steven Gerrard.

Campbell is at Southend United having previously managed Macclesfield Town, while Cole last year took up a coaching role in Chelsea's academy.

Eriksson coached both as England boss and says the pair are "very clever young men" who can become successful managers.

"Unfortunately, I have to say there are not so many black managers around the world and if you ask me why, I don't know, but it's a fact," Eriksson told Stats Perform News.

"You have [Clarence] Seedorf, who has been rather successful here and there, so there are [some]. I think you have a lot of South Americans, but probably it should be more.

"[Campbell and Cole] are two very clever young men, boys when I had them. Extremely good football players, of course, and the knowledge of football is second to none.

"They know their football and are good people. When they talk, you listen. So I can't see any reason why they shouldn't be good managers as well - coaches, managers, whatever."

Eriksson saw similar potential in Lampard and has been impressed by his early work at Chelsea, having been appointed last year following a successful season at Derby County.

"I think he's doing very well and already last season we saw what he could do, so I think it was a good choice of Chelsea to take him," Eriksson said. "I think he will be there for many, many years.

"He's doing a great job and he's coming from a football family. He was born with football - his father, his uncle, the whole family - so I'm not surprised.

"And when I had him with England, you could see that he's a very clever man, clever football thinking, so it's not a surprise that he's become a good manager as well."

Idrissa Gueye is giving little credence to talk of a move away from Paris Saint-Germain, where he has enjoyed his first season.

Midfielder Gueye joined PSG from Everton in a €32million deal last season and quickly established himself as a key man in the Ligue 1 giants' midfield.

However, the Senegal international has been linked with a transfer back to the Premier League with Wolves in recent days.

Gueye is not concerned by the speculation, citing previous reports of a Chelsea bid, as he insisted all was well at PSG.

"I'm used to these rumours. For each transfer window, it's like that for me," Gueye told Emedia.

"Even in January, six months after I arrived at PSG, I was already linked to Chelsea, so I'm used to it.

"Everything is going well for me at the club, and I am often in contact with the sporting director [Leonardo] and there was never any question of a departure. He never spoke to me about transfers or letting me go.

"So, to me, these are just rumours in the transfer market because there isn't much happening at the moment."

Gueye and PSG were awarded the Ligue 1 title after the season was curtailed due to the coronavirus pandemic, but they are set to return to action later in the campaign for the Champions League quarter-finals.

The French outfit impressed as they rallied past Borussia Dortmund in the last 16, yet Gueye acknowledges a lack of match action could work against them now.

"Once we have resumed training, we must be ready to resume immediately and fight to go as far as possible, even if we are a little disadvantaged by the fact that the other leagues have resumed for some time," he added.

"They will have had a lot more competition than us, but if we try to turn that into our favour, that is to say not to ask questions, to say the others have started again and not us, we can turn that on our side.

"[PSG can] tell ourselves that we will arrive much fresher than the others because they will have played a lot of games, and that we will be fresher to put them in difficulty and win as many games as possible."

Chelsea are reportedly set to make a move for Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz.

Havertz, 20, has been linked with numerous European giants after impressing for the Bundesliga club.

The Germany international has attracted plenty of interest, but Chelsea are apparently ready to strengthen even further this close season.

 

TOP STORY – CHELSEA PREPARE HAVERTZ BID

Chelsea are preparing a bid for Bayer Leverkusen star Havertz, according to the Daily Mail.

The Premier League giants are expected to sign RB Leipzig forward Timo Werner and Havertz could follow him to Stamford Bridge.

Real Madrid and Bayern Munich are among the other clubs reportedly interested in Havertz, who is rated at £75million.

ROUND-UP

- Manchester United have been linked to James Rodriguez previously and the playmaker could yet end up at Old Trafford. The Sun reports United have been asked about a cut-price deal for James, who is out of contract at Real Madrid next year.

- Staying at Manchester United and Sport reports they were prepared to pay £88.8m (€100m) for 17-year-old Barcelona forward Ansu Fati, but the LaLiga giants have no plans to let the teenager leave.

- Out of contract at the end of June, Adam Lallana could extend his Liverpool stay – at least briefly. The Daily Mail says the midfielder is on track to agree a short-term deal with the Premier League leaders to stay until the end of the season, before being expected to join Leicester City.

- Memphis Depay has enjoyed a strong season at Lyon, but the attacker is out of contract next year. CalcioMercato reports talks are moving slowly, leading to interest in the Netherlands international from AC Milan and potentially Everton.

- Leicester City left-back Ben Chilwell is linked with a switch. The Evening Standard reports Chelsea have the advantage over Manchester City in the chase for the England international due to the latter's Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) hearing as they challenge their European ban.

- With Alex Sandro contracted until 2023, Juventus seemingly have no plans to sell the left-back. According to CalcioMercato, the 29-year-old is not for sale – but he is also not untouchable.

Chelsea fans waiting for news on Timo Werner did a double take on Monday upon reading the Premier League club's announcement about a the arrival of a striker.

It was reported last week that the Blues had triggered Germany international Werner's release clause, thought to be in the region of £54million (€60m), and had won the race for the in-demand RB Leipzig forward.

The Bundesliga side's CEO Oliver Mintzlaff denied an agreement had been reached, though it looks likely that Werner will be part of Frank Lampard's squad next season.

Official word on that is yet to arrive but many of the Blues' fanbase thought confirmation came from a Twitter post the team made.

"Congratulations, Tino!" read a post along with an emoji of a hand holding a pen.

However, rather than being guilty of a typo, Chelsea were actually confirming a new five-year deal for 18-year-old striker Tino Anjorin.

The teenager is the Blues' top scorer for the development squad this season and won the 2018 FA Youth Cup alongside Callum Hudson-Odoi and Billy Gilmour.

Anjorin made his senior bow in the EFL Cup at the start of the season and came off the bench to make his Premier League bow against Everton in March.

Sergej Milinkovic-Savic has a long list of admirers.

From Manchester United to Real Madrid, the Lazio midfielder is a player in demand.

Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain, however, appear on track to sign the Serbia international.

 

TOP STORY –  PSG AND MILINKOVIC-SAVIC IN AGREEMENT

Paris Saint-Germain have reached a salary agreement with Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, according to Paris Fans.

Milinkovic-Savic has been linked to Premier League giants Manchester United and LaLiga powerhouse Real Madrid.

But PSG have an agreement with Milinkovic-Savic for a salary around €7million a year, while the deal could also include Laizo's Adam Marusic.

Firstly, PSG would like to seal the departure of Julian Draxler, who has been linked to Bundesliga side Hertha Berlin.

 

ROUND-UP

Neymar still wants to join Barcelona at the end of the season. The front page of Monday's Mundo Deportivo says the PSG star remains committed to pushing through a return to Barca at all costs.

- The Telegraph says Manchester City have entered the chase for Leicester City full-back Ben Chilwell. The Englishman has been heavily linked to Chelsea.

- Birmingham City sensation Jude Bellingham prefers Borussia Dortmund over United, reports the Birmingham Mail. The 16-year-old is wanted by both clubs, while he has already toured United's facilities.

Marco Verratti and Alvaro Morata are being linked with returns to Serie A. Tuttosport claims the possible arrival of Italian head coach Massimiliano Allegri at PSG could see Verratti and Juventus' Miralem Pjanic swap clubs. Atletico Madrid forward Morata, meanwhile, has been in contact with Inter as Edinson Cavani prepares to move to the Spanish capital on a free transfer.

- Admirers of Ismael Bennacer will struggle to sign the Milan midfielder. City, Madrid and PSG have been linked to Bennacer. But, Calciomercato says the 22-year-old's €50m release clause is not active until 2021.

Barca's bid to bring Lautaro Martinez to Camp Nou is no closer to completion. Junior Firpo has emerged as the key to unlocking the deadlock between Barca and Inter. Junior Firpo is valued at €41m by Barca, but FCInterNews says the Nerazzurri consider the defender's transfer value closer to €20m.

Timo Werner is not of the standard of Liverpool's current front three, according to Reds legend Robbie Fowler.

Werner has long been linked with a move from RB Leipzig to Anfield but looks set to join Liverpool's Premier League rivals Chelsea.

It is claimed the Blues have triggered Werner's release clause, thought to be in the region of £54million (€60m), to win the race for his signature.

Former Liverpool defender Steve Nicol recently said the club had "slipped up" by not signing Werner.

However, that is not a view shared by Fowler.

Fowler wrote in his column in the Daily Mirror: "I've heard the noise ­surrounding Timo Werner in recent weeks – but I'm not a big fan.

"I realise he's a talented player, he has moments of real brilliance in matches that underline his quality. But I stand by this: is Werner up to the standard of Liverpool's current front three? Not for me.

"I've also seen the meltdown from some Liverpool fans when they ­realised he's probably not leaving RB Leipzig for Anfield after all. It makes it seem as though he's a Marco van Basten, a world-class player who would walk into any side.

"For the life of me, I don't know why... does he influence games consistently enough? Not for me.

"Does he match up to the players you are signing him to challenge and replace? Not at Liverpool. Maybe at Chelsea."

Werner has scored 25 goals and supplied eight assists in 30 Bundesliga appearances in 2018-19.

Jack Grealish or Jadon Sancho at Old Trafford?

Manchester United have been linked to both players.

But Aston Villa's Grealish has reportedly surged ahead of Borussia Dortmund star Jadon as United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer eyes reinforcements.

 

TOP STORY – GREALISH LEAPFROGS SANCHO AS UTD TARGET

Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish has moved ahead of Jadon Sancho on Manchester United's wishlist, according to the Mirror.

United have been tipped to sign Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho at the end of the coronavirus-hit 2019-20 season.

But Grealish now reportedly tops United's list of transfer targets due to Dortmund's demands.

 

ROUND-UP

- Marca reports Barcelona risk losing out on signing Inter forward Lautaro Martinez. The LaLiga champions are favourites to prise Martinez to Camp Nou but they are yet to agree a deal. Now, United and Real Madrid are waiting in the wings.

Inter remain hopeful of signing Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal, says Calciomercato. It comes as the Nerazzurri also target Brescia sensation Sandro Tonali.

- The Mirror claims Liverpool have turned their attention to signing Wolves star Adama Traore as RB Leipzig's Timo Werner looks set to join Premier League rivals Chelsea.

Madrid have made an €80million offer for Bayer Leverkusen's Kai Havertz, according to Bild. The deal would also see Havertz stay at Leverkusen on loan next season. The in-demand Germany international is also reportedly wanted by Bayern Munich, United and Liverpool.

- The Daily Mail reports United are looking to hijack Madrid's pursuit of Ajax star Donny van de Beek.

- Paris Saint-Germain forward Edinson Cavani has turned down Inter as he heads to Atletico Madrid on a free transfer, says Tuttosport.

Fiorentina president Rocco Commisso said Federico Chiesa can leave if the club's valuation is met amid reported interest from Serie A and Premier League clubs.

Chiesa is a player in demand following his exploits for Fiorentina, with Italian champions Juventus, Inter, Manchester United and Chelsea among the teams linked.

The 22-year-old Italy international, who emerged from Fiorentina's youth system in 2016, had managed six goals and three assists in 23 Serie A appearances prior to the coronavirus pandemic halting the season.

Fiorentina owner Commisso has already said he is open to selling Chiesa if the forward wishes to depart and he reiterated his stance on Saturday.

"If Chiesa wants, then he can leave, but only for the figure that we set," Commisso told reporters.

"It's a different matter for Gaetano Castrovilli [the Fiorentina midfielder has also attracted interest], as he told me that he wants to remain in Florence.

"If Chiesa does go, then Castrovilli can have the Number 10 jersey."

Fiorentina – 13th in the table at the time of postponement – are set to resume their 2019-20 campaign at home to Brescia on June 22.

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