Rumour Has It: Barcelona to begin Messi contract talks, Liverpool monitor Sancho situation

By Sports Desk June 06, 2020

Lionel Messi could be set to extend his contract at Barcelona.

The six-time Ballon d'Or winner's deal with the LaLiga giants expires next year, and there has been some speculation about the forward's future.

But, a renewal at Barcelona could be on the cards.

 

TOP STORY – BARCELONA TO BEGIN CONTRACT TALKS WITH MESSI

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu is planning to meet Messi's father next week to discuss a contract renewal, according to Sport.

The 32-year-old has won 10 LaLiga titles and the Champions League on four occasions during his time at Barca.

Meanwhile, Sport also reports Barcelona rejected a €100million offer for 17-year-old forward Ansu Fati.

ROUND-UP

- While RB Leipzig star Timo Werner is reportedly set to join Chelsea, it seems Liverpool may be looking elsewhere. The Independent says Liverpool are closely monitoring Borussia Dortmund attacker Jadon Sancho. The England international has been linked to Manchester United and Real Madrid. The Mirror, meanwhile, reports Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp called Werner to tell the forward the club would not be pursuing a move.

- Barcelona are expected to be busy during the close season. Marca reports the LaLiga giants are still focused on Inter star Lautaro Martinez and Juventus midfielder Miralem Pjanic, despite the transfers being complicated.

- Staying at Camp Nou and Sport reports Bayern Munich consider Barcelona defender Nelson Semedo, valued at €40m, too expensive, with Ajax's Sergino Dest a cheaper alternative.

- Out of contract at Paris Saint-Germain at season's end, Thiago Silva could be set for an exit. The defender is open to a return to AC Milan if he does not renew in Paris, according to Sport.

- Another player coming out of contract, Dries Mertens, is seemingly going nowhere. Sky Sport reports Mertens, 33, will extend his contract with Napoli for two years with an option for a third.

- Could Chelsea add a left-back this close season? The Guardian says they are stepping up their interest in Leicester City defender Ben Chilwell, while Ajax's Nicolas Tagliafico is said to be an alternative.

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  • Rumour Has It: Man City still in Koulibaly talks, Wolves to sign Barca's Semedo Rumour Has It: Man City still in Koulibaly talks, Wolves to sign Barca's Semedo

    Will Manchester City finally land Kalidou Koulibaly?

    Pep Guardiola's City want defensive reinforcements and Napoli centre-back Koulibaly is reportedly at the top of the list.

    If they are unsuccessful, Sevilla's Jules Kounde is next on the list.

     

    TOP STORY – CITY NOT GIVING UP KOULIBALY

    Manchester City are still in talks with Napoli to sign star defender Kalidou Koulibaly, according to journalist Fabrizio Romano.

    City have been tipped to sign Koulibaly, who has also been linked to Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain.

    However, City are yet to reach an agreement with Napoli and Sevilla's Jules Kounde is the "backup option" but a bid has already been turned down.

     

    ROUND-UP

    - Romano says Wolves will complete the signing of Barcelona full-back Nelson Semedo on Monday. It comes as Barca eye Ajax defender Sergino Dest or Real Betis' Emerson to replace Semedo. Norwich City's Max Aarons has also been linked.

    Milan have made Fiorentina's Nikola Milenkovic their number one defensive target ahead of Celtic centre-back Kristoffer Ajer, reports the Daily Record.

    - Calciomercato claims Juventus are eyeing Real Madrid full-back Marcelo. The Brazilian has been repeatedly linked with a Cristiano Ronaldo reunion in Turin.

    - The Telegraph says PSG are interested in Tottenham's Dele Alli. Out of favour under Jose Mourinho, Spurs are reportedly targeting Manchester United's Jesse Lingard as a replacement.

    Roma remain interested in Napoli's Arkadiusz Milik but Madrid outcast Luka Jovic has emerged as 'Plan B', according to Calciomercato.

    Leeds United are out of the race to sign Dinamo Zagreb sensation Josko Gvardiol, reports Romano. Wanted by Marcelo Bielsa, the Croatian teenager is now set for Bundesliga outfit RB Leipzig.

  • Juventus not signing Barca's Suarez, insists Paratici Juventus not signing Barca's Suarez, insists Paratici

    Juventus sporting director Fabio Paratici confirmed Barcelona star Luis Suarez will not be joining the Serie A champions, while insisting the club are not only eyeing Roma striker Edin Dzeko.

    Reportedly told he can leave embattled LaLiga giants Barca, veteran forward Suarez had been heavily linked with Cristiano Ronaldo's Juve following Gonzalo Higuain's move to David Beckham's Inter Miami in MLS.

    But a delay in securing an Italian passport for the 33-year-old Uruguay international has scuppered those plans, Paratici confirmed prior to Sunday's season-opening 3-0 win over Sampdoria.

    "Suarez can be removed from that list, because the time it takes to get the passport is longer than the transfer deadline or the moment we can hand in the Champions League lists," said Paratici, whose Juve have already filled their non-European quota.

    "We evaluated the Suarez option when it was proposed to us. He was in the process of getting Italian citizenship, so we evaluated the possibility of registering him in time.

    "It is not possible, so he was never really close."

    While Suarez is off the list, Juve – led by rookie head coach Andrea Pirlo – continue to be linked with Roma's Dzeko.

    Dzeko's proposed move to Juve is reportedly tied to Roma signing Napoli forward Arkadiusz Milik as a replacement in the Italian capital.

    Amid uncertainty over this future, Dzeko was an unused substitute in Roma's goalless draw at Hellas Verona on Saturday.

    "Let's say there isn't a Dzeko situation, it's a striker situation, as Juventus need a centre-forward," Paratici said as Juve reportedly try to re-sign Moise Kean from Everton. "We know what we want and are working towards that calmly, there are 15 days to go in the transfer window and we're in no rush.

    "There are other situations, not just Dzeko. We know what we want. We're working for a striker who can work with Cristiano Ronaldo and Paulo Dybala.

    "At this moment, we are seeking one striker, we have our objectives and will try to pursue them calmly, regardless of the names."

  • Klopp hails 'outstanding' Fabinho performance against Chelsea Klopp hails 'outstanding' Fabinho performance against Chelsea

    Jurgen Klopp lauded Fabinho for an "outstanding" performance at centre-back in Liverpool's 2-0 Premier League win over Chelsea on Sunday.

    With Joe Gomez and Joel Matip injured, Fabinho moved into the centre of defence alongside Virgil van Dijk and produced a fine display at Stamford Bridge.

    Sadio Mane's second-half brace lifted Liverpool to a second straight win to begin the Premier League season, with the attacker earlier brought down by Andreas Christensen that led to the defender being sent off.

    Klopp hailed Fabinho for his performance, although Liverpool needed a penalty save from Alisson to deny Jorginho to keep their clean sheet.

    "If Sadio wouldn't have scored two goals, I think Fab would be a proper contender for man of the match," the Liverpool manager told a news conference.

    "I loved his performance, he played outstanding. He helped us a lot with the ball and in defending as well, so yes, a proper performance."

    Fabinho made a game-high four interceptions and gained possession 12 times, while completing 86 of his 89 passes.

    In a further boost for Liverpool, Thiago Alcantara made his debut, replacing Jordan Henderson at half-time.

    But Mane starred with his brace and Klopp said the attacker's second goal, when he dispossessed Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, highlighter Liverpool's hunger.

    "It says everything about that and it says everything about the team as well. I love that because we have these situations quite a lot – that we chase the goalie," he said.

    "I think in the first half Sadio was really close to blocking it there already but you just have to do it. I love it when we get the rewards for these kinds of situations.

    "The first goal was a nice piece of football, everybody involved pretty much. [Roberto] Firmino cross and then Sadio comes in front of his man, so it's really difficult to defend. Good goal and gave the game the right direction. That's exactly what we have to show all the time, that's what we wanted to show today.

    "I saw us today, I saw us playing football today and I'm completely fine with that. I loved it."

    Liverpool face Lincoln City in the EFL Cup on Thursday before hosting Arsenal in the Premier League four days later.

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