Eden Hazard stressed the importance of winning trophies every season at Real Madrid as the star signing eyes silverware in 2019-20.

Hazard swapped Chelsea for Madrid in a big-money move during the off-season after the LaLiga club's difficult 2018-19 campaign.

Madrid finished third behind bitter rivals Barcelona in LaLiga, crashed out of the Champions League in the last 16 and lost in the Copa del Rey semi-finals.

Hazard – who led Chelsea to Europa League glory last term – understands the importance of titles at the Santiago Bernabeu.

"When you play for Real Madrid you need to win things every season. You need to win, win, win," Hazard told Jay Shetty via Madrid's official website.

"If you don't win the Champions League the fans get down and that's to be expected. At this club you always want to win and that's why I'm here.

"I want to play games, score goals and, come the end of the season, lift trophies."

Hazard made his debut for Madrid in last week's 3-1 loss to Bayern Munich at the International Champions Cup.

The Belgium international and Madrid are back in action against Arsenal in Maryland on Tuesday.

"I play with freedom. That's difficult in football because there are defenders, midfielders... but that's the kind of player I am," Hazard said.

"If I don't have that freedom I don't play well and end up on the bench. I like to get on the ball, move to the right, to the left, shift around and play with my instinct.

"I don't think: I have to do this, play the ball to the right, to the left. I just play, get on the ball and decide what to do."

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery voiced his admiration for Real Madrid's Dani Ceballos, who is reportedly poised to join the Premier League side.

According to reports, Madrid midfielder Ceballos is on the verge of completing a season-long loan move to Arsenal.

It has been a slow transfer window for Arsenal, who have been linked with Celtic full-back Kieran Tierney, Saint-Etienne teenager William Saliba and Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha.

Asked about Spain international Ceballos on the eve of Tuesday's International Champions Cup clash against Madrid in Maryland, Emery told reporters: "We were speaking about the possibility to sign one player on loan and we have different names.

"The club was working on that. Ceballos is a very good player, I know him from Betis at the beginning and also at Real Madrid.

"He played very well with the under-21s, they won with his national team in this competition."

Arsenal head into Tuesday's match having won all three of their pre-season games in the United States.

The Gunners have beaten Colorado Rapids (3-0), Bayern Munich (2-1) and Fiorentina (3-0), with a number of their youngsters impressing – Eddie Nketiah with three goals so far.

"We started to play against Colorado Rapids with a lot of young players and progressively we are using less minutes and to share with the experienced players," Emery said when asked about Arsenal's young players.

"It depends on the matches. Tomorrow, at the beginning I want to take more minutes with the players thinking about our progress for the first match against Newcastle.

"But also, we are going to use some young players at the beginning or during the match to continue trying with this difficult capacity against Real Madrid."

Zinedine Zidane insists he did not disrespect Gareth Bale when he said it would be good if he left Real Madrid sooner rather than later.

Zidane caused a stir when he stated last weekend that he hoped Wales star Bale would leave the LaLiga club soon, adding: "It would be best for everyone."

Bale's agent, Jonathan Barnett, branded the Madrid head coach "a disgrace" for his remarks, as talk of an imminent move to the Chinese Super League gathered pace.

Zidane has now hit back at such suggestions and claims Bale himself declined to play in the 3-1 International Champions Cup defeat to Bayern Munich on Sunday because the club was trying to arrange his transfer.

"I'll try to be very clear with this, with Gareth," he told a news conference on Monday.

"Firstly, I have not disrespected anyone, least of all a player because I always said the same thing, that players are the most important thing and every time there is a player here I am always with them.

"Secondly, I said the club was trying to get him out. Period.

"Thirdly, I think this is important, too. The other day, Gareth did not change because he didn't want to, nothing more. He said the club is trying to get him to go and so he didn't get changed because of that.

"Now, we come back to the same thing. Bale is a Madrid player, he will train normally today, and we'll see what happens tomorrow [against Arsenal]."

When the subject of Bale was brought up again, he said: "You keep asking about this situation. Nothing will change today - he's going to go and train now. The club is doing what it has to do.

"He will train normally, and we'll see what happens tomorrow."

Bale has been linked with Chinese Super League clubs Jiangsu Suning and Beijing Guoan, who are reportedly considering offering wages of £1million per week.

Madrid face Arsenal in Maryland on Tuesday.

Gareth Bale's long goodbye to Real Madrid is edging closer after head coach Zinedine Zidane confirmed the club is actively working to sell the Wales international.

A move to either Paris Saint-Germain or the Chinese Super League looks most likely for a player who cut a frustrated figure for the majority of the 2018-19 season.

Bale is poised to be forced out at the behest of Zidane and there are a host of significant players across Europe who have yet to negotiate an exit despite expressing a desire to move on.

Here, we look at the players who are stuck in limbo with the start of the 2019-20 season just weeks away.

 

Neymar

Neymar has not publicly stated he wants to leave the Ligue 1 champions but the club's sporting director, Leonardo, has said he can move on if the price is right.

The Brazilian superstar has yet to feature for PSG so far during pre-season and was again absent as Thomas Tuchel's side laboured to a 1-1 draw with Nurnberg on Saturday.

A possible swap deal involving Bale could be a possibility, although a move back to his former club Barcelona looks more likely. Will the Catalan giants stump up the money, though, and end the impasse?

Romelu Lukaku

Lukaku joined United from Everton in a £75million deal in 2017, scoring 28 goals in 66 Premier League games since then, but his performances have been much maligned.

He fell out of favour towards the end of last season and has been heavily linked with a switch to Inter as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer shakes up his United squad ahead of the new campaign.

The two clubs appear to be some way apart in their valuation of the Belgium international – who has yet to feature in pre-season – and, for now, he remains a United player.

Philippe Coutinho

Things have not gone according to plan at Barcelona for Coutinho following his January 2018 move from Liverpool, with the Brazilian admitting last month he does not know what his future holds.

Coutinho only managed five LaLiga goals in 34 appearances as Barca retained their crown in 2018-19, with 12 of his league outings coming from the bench.

With Antoine Griezmann now on board at Camp Nou, Coutinho's playing time is likely to be reduced even further and a move might suit both parties.

Paul Pogba

The French World Cup winner hinted at being unsettled at Manchester United last month, telling reporters he was interested in a new challenge three years after returning to Old Trafford from Juventus.

His agent, Mino Raiola, doubled down on that recently, telling The Times: "Everyone within the club, from the manager to the owner, knows Paul's wishes."

A move back to Juve has been mooted for the 26-year-old, while Real Madrid and Barcelona are also rumoured to be interested in the playmaker. United are standing firm, though, and it is looking increasingly likely that he will spend at least another season in the Premier League.

Mauro Icardi

Icardi endured a controversial 2018-19 campaign with Inter, the Argentina international stripped of the captaincy amid conflicting views of an apparent knee injury and internal disagreements with the club's hierarchy.

The club's chief executive, Giuseppe Marotta, recently told the striker he was no longer wanted and both parties mutually agreed he would withdraw from their pre-season tour of Asia.

That has not hastened his departure from the club, though, with potential suitors perhaps wary of signing a player who will bring plenty of baggage.

Christian Eriksen 

The Denmark international stunned Tottenham supporters last month when he declared he wanted to "try something new".

Eriksen arrived from Eredivisie giants Ajax in 2013 and the 27-year-old has established himself as one of the Premier League and Europe's best midfielders.

Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid have been linked with the playmaker but no firm offers appear to have been tabled yet.

Gareth Bale's situation at Real Madrid is "unsustainable" and a loan move would be the best solution, according to former club president Ramon Calderon.

Zinedine Zidane announced after the 3-1 International Champions Cup defeat to Bayern Munich that Bale did not play in the pre-season fixture because he was very close to leaving Los Blancos.

Madrid coach Zidane was forthright when discussing the Welshman's future at the Santiago Bernabeu, saying: "We hope he leaves soon, it would be best for everyone."

Bale's former club Tottenham, Manchester United and Bayern Munich have all been linked with a move for the 30-year-old, though the Chinese Super League is believed to be his most likely destination.

Yet Calderon predicted the finances of any exit for Bale will prove difficult to negotiate and said he would favour a temporary departure for the forward, though he acknowledged such an option is unlikely.

"I think it's unsustainable for everyone, for the player, the coach and the club. Zidane discarded him a long time ago. He said he wanted to keep Cristiano [Ronaldo] and to sell Bale [and] the president didn't follow that advice, so that's why he left the club [in May 2018]," Calderon told Sky Sports.

"When he came back he was promised Bale won't be there in the future. Maybe the comments weren't really appropriate, but I think what he showed is he's fed up with the situation. The best thing to do is find a solution.

"No top player, and he's one of them for sure, wants to be on the bench, they want to play. I'm sure he would like to play for Wales and mainly he'd like to be playing, it doesn't matter where [but] I suppose in a big club.

"What is true is that no offers have come. That's another problem. They are talking about Chinese clubs. They have the problem that when paying the transfer fee, with a new rule, you also have to pay the same money to the federation, so that doubles the transfer fee.

"I think in this case the best solution would be a loan, but no one is willing to do that. With the high salary he's got, and also the club trying to get a transfer fee, the solution is very difficult."

On whether Madrid have handled the situation appropriately, Calderon said: "I don't think so.

"When these things happen you have to act quickly. I know one year ago we received an offer of around €100million and we didn't accept it because the president thought that being his star, the one he signed, he should be here and perhaps the manager didn't know how to take advantage of his qualities.

"Maybe it's true, but when you have a coach that says he doesn't want to keep a player you have to look for a solution."

Neymar and Gareth Bale have been locked in something of a transfer impasse in recent weeks - but it appears there could be a solution.

According to the Independent, Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar's representatives are trying to push through a deal that would see the Brazil star move to the Santiago Bernabeu, with Bale and money moving the other way.

Manchester United are not thought to be interested in either player, but their pursuit of Harry Maguire may, at last, be coming to an end.

 

TOP STORY - NEYMAR AND BALE PROPOSED IN SWAP DEAL

Neymar is said to be "desperate" to leave Paris Saint-Germain and ideally return to Spain, but his options have so far seemed limited, with Barcelona and Real Madrid either unable or unwilling to stump up for the transfer.

Meanwhile, Gareth Bale has been told by head coach Zinedine Zidane that it would be best for him to leave, but suitors appear hard to come by for the Wales international.

The Independent claims this has prompted some of Neymar's camp to explore the prospect of the forward joining Madrid in a deal involving money and Bale heading to PSG.

The idea is that it would solve some of the concerns around transfer fees that have stalled moves for each player and allow the two teams to sign ready-made stars to replace the ones they are losing.

ROUND-UP:

Manchester United's chase for a centre-back could nearly be over, with the Independent claiming a deal to sign Harry Maguire from Leicester City is "imminent".

Manchester City could yet intervene but, according to the Sun, they would have to sell Nicolas Otamendi or Eliaquim Mangala to afford England international Maguire.

- If Bale does not become part of a Neymar swap deal, he could end up in China – the Mirror claim he has been offered a contract worth £1million per week to join Beijing Guoan.

- Having agreed personal terms, Andre Silva is close to moving to Monaco, which would free up AC Milan to sign Atletico Madrid's Angel Correa, both Sky Sport Italia and Sport Mediaset claim.

Napoli have been chasing James Rodriguez but might now go instead for Lyon captain Nabil Fekir, according to RMC Sport and L'Equipe.

- Another Madrid player tipped for an exit, Dani Ceballos, has been told to choose between Arsenal and Tottenham for his season-long loan, AS say.

- Calciomercato reports Juventus could sell either Merih Demiral or Daniele Rugani following Matthijs de Ligt's arrival. Demiral, who only just arrived from Sassuolo, has been linked to AC Milan. Roma are reportedly interested in Rugani.

Carlo Ancelotti said Napoli are still negotiating a deal to prise James Rodriguez from Real Madrid as Atletico Madrid reportedly circle.

James has been linked with Napoli throughout the transfer window, but a deal reuniting the Colombia star and head coach Ancelotti is yet to materialise.

Atletico have emerged as a possible destination for James amid a deadlock in talks between Napoli and LaLiga giants Madrid.

Asked about Napoli's pursuit of James, Ancelotti told TV Luna: "I'm not aware of a deal with Atletico.

"We're still talking for James, a player that I really like. I'm very attached to James, I rate him very highly and he can certainly improve our team.

"He doesn't need to re-announce himself, he's a great player. But he's not the only player we're openly negotiating for. We're assessing many players."

While negotiations for James drag on, Napoli are close to signing Fenerbahce and Macedonia midfielder Eljif Elmas.

With Amadou Diawara now at Roma and Marko Rog poised for Cagliari, Napoli have turned to the 19-year-old Elmas as Ancelotti's men look to dethrone Serie A champions Juventus in 2019-20.

"We're very close and I hope a deal closes quickly. He's a very interesting player and we're defining the final details," Ancelotti added. "I hope he arrives before we leave Dimaro.

"We were looking for a player skilled at playing between the lines, and Elmas has a lot of quality.

"The squad is already very complete. We have to take a little step at a time. We're very close to the top.

"We'll be happy as of August 31. Napoli are working and nothing is impossible, but then there are the wants of the players or problems with the clubs or agents."

Benjamin Pavard says Bayern Munich fans can expect a successful season and should not fear any "little crisis" that comes the way of the Bundesliga champions.

Niko Kovac's side beat Real Madrid 3-1 in the International Champions Cup on Sunday despite goalkeeper Sven Ulreich's late red card in Houston.

There were encouraging signs of improvement following Bayern's 2-1 loss to Arsenal last Thursday, particularly with the DFL-Supercup showdown with Borussia Dortmund now less than two weeks away.

Bayern's domestic dominance looked under serious threat from Dortmund last term, but a strong second half to the season saw them claim the league title and the DFB-Pokal.

And Pavard, who completed his move from Stuttgart after the end of 2018-19, thinks there is every reason to be optimistic heading into the new campaign.

"We were strong, we defended very well, attacked very well," he said after the win over Madrid. "We scored three goals. We conceded a goal, which is annoying, but it does not matter. We just must remember the fact we won. We feel better and better.

"Of course, it's a very big club, which has a habit of winning a lot of titles. We know that if we lose one or two matches in the season, it's a kind of little crisis. But I don't worry: we really have a very good squad and a great atmosphere. It will be okay.

"I have a lot of confidence. There is a very good atmosphere. On the pitch, we can see that everyone takes pleasure. We are making every effort together."

Bayern face AC Milan and Fenerbahce in their remaining pre-season games before meeting Dortmund on August 3 at Signal Iduna Park.

They then take on Energie Cottbus in the first round of the DFB-Pokal before getting their Bundesliga campaign underway at home to Hertha Berlin on August 16.

Mauricio Pochettino does not know if Tottenham have made a bid to sign their former player Gareth Bale from Real Madrid.

Zinedine Zidane revealed on Sunday that Madrid are working on selling the Wales international after omitting him from the squad that lost to Bayern Munich in the International Champions Cup (ICC) on Saturday.

Zidane seemed to indicate the club were in negotiations with a particular club, saying: "We are working on his transfer to a new team."

Newspaper reports on Sunday have suggested that Paris Saint-Germain are interested in a swap deal involving Neymar, while Pochettino – speaking after his side's 3-2 ICC win over Juventus – refused to rule out if his chairman Daniel Levy has tabled an offer for the 30-year-old.

"I saw the reports in the media but I don't know which club is trying to sign him," he told reporters.

"I don't have any information from my chairman; I don't know if it's us or another club. It's the job of my chairman."

Harry Kane struck a sensational stoppage-time winner from the halfway line as Pochettino's side opened up their pre-season campaign with a win over Juve in Singapore.

Gareth Bale's days at Real Madrid appear to be numbered after head coach Zinedine Zidane confirmed the club are working on a transfer for the forward.

Zidane was billed a "disgrace" by Bale's agent Jonathan Barnett, who has previously confirmed the coach and player have a fraught relationship, with the Frenchman seemingly not valuing Bale's ability despite his contribution to three consecutive Champions League titles.

It was Bale's double that sealed Madrid's last European crown a year ago, a stunning overhead kick contributing to a 3-1 defeat of Liverpool in Kiev that proved Zidane's last match in charge - soon after he announced his shock resignation.

But Zidane is back and seemingly set on selling Bale, so what are the options available to the Wales international now the Madrid coach has clearly signalled he has no place for him?

 

TOTTENHAM

The romantic option, a return to Tottenham would enable Bale to play first-team football and slot back into a club where he became a global superstar. Finances would surely scupper a permanent move although Spurs have smashed their club record to buy Lyon midfielder Tanguy Ndombele and are reportedly considering doing so again to sign Giovani Lo Celso from Real Betis. An initial loan has been mooted but Madrid would still likely have to cover a large portion of Bale's massive wages - how desperate are they to move him on? Bale would certainly improve Mauricio Pochettino's forward options and a front three of Son Heung-min, Harry Kane and Bale looks incredibly strong on paper.


MANCHESTER UNITED

Bale has long been linked with United, but their failure to qualify for the Champions League does not make them an attractive option for top-level players right now although they remain among the world's biggest clubs. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has also indicated he is willing to put his faith in young players such as the talented teenager Mason Greenwood, who has impressed in pre-season to force his way into first-team contention at Old Trafford despite being just 17. Bale would be an upgrade on United's wing options but they seem to be going in a different direction with the arrivals of Dan James and Aaron Wan-Bissaka signalling a long-needed change in transfer policy. Madrid's reported interest in Paul Pogba could see Bale offered to United as part of a potential deal, though.


PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN

If PSG lose Neymar - the club confirmed recently he wants to leave - they will have room for another elite talent and Bale might just fit the bill. Whether moving to what is essentially a one-team league due to PSG's financial firepower is attractive to the Welshman is unclear, but teaming up with a thrilling talent like Kylian Mbappe could be persuasive. PSG are also one of a very small number of teams who could pay Bale the wages he has become accustomed to earning in Madrid and he has plenty of experience of winning the Champions League, which remains PSG's goal.


CHINESE SUPER LEAGUE

According to the bookmakers, Bale's most likely next destination is the Chinese Super League. Finances are again the key here, although CSL clubs have shown a reduced willingness over the last 12 months to pursue the most expensive players on the market due to a change in the league's regulations, which means they must pay considerable taxes on top of large transfer fees. Bale has been unable - or perhaps unwilling - to learn Spanish while in Madrid so it would be interesting to see how he would fare with the culture clash in China.


STAY AT REAL MADRID

Reports in Spain previously claimed Bale is happy to see out his contract at the Santiago Bernabeu, which still has three years to run. It would be a tempting option given no other clubs are likely to match his pay packet, while the lack of stability in the dugout could play in his favour. Zidane was Madrid's third permanent head coach last term and failed to inspire any significant improvement in the latter weeks of the 2018-19 campaign. Although the Frenchman has considerable credit from his trio of consecutive Champions League titles, it is not impossible to see Madrid starting the season poorly and president Florentino Perez opting for yet another change of head coach. Another man in charge could see Bale as an asset so the 30-year-old may choose to stay put for now.

Zinedine Zidane intends to use Rodrgyo Goes in a central position at Real Madrid, the teenager revealed after marking his debut for the club with a goal on Sunday.

Rodrygo was one of four Madrid debutants in the International Champions Cup defeat to Bayern Munich, along with Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic and Ferland Mendy, and he scored a superb late free-kick as Zidane's men went down 3-1 in Houston.

After the game, the former Santos forward was quoted by Marca as saying: "Zidane [Madrid's head coach] wants me to play more down the middle.

"I am typically more used to operating on the wings, but that is what the coach wants. It's a position in which I am comfortable and enjoy."

Still only 18, Rodrygo is unsure whether he will see regular action in his first season in Spain.

"I am not sure whether I will be playing in the first team yet. It is up to Zidane and his staff to decide where best to utilise me," he added.

Discussing his superb debut goal, Rodrygo said: "I always used to take free-kicks at Santos. That is why I asked to take it."

Gareth Bale's agent has branded Zinedine Zidane "a disgrace" and insists the Wales winger will only leave Real Madrid on his own terms.

Zidane revealed Madrid are working on selling Bale after omitting the four-time Champions League winner from the squad that lost to Bayern Munich in the International Champions Cup on Saturday.

"We hope he leaves soon, it would be best for everyone," Madrid's head coach said.

The comments have not gone down well with the Bale camp.

Bale has never shown much interest in leaving Madrid and still has three seasons left to run on his contract.

"Zidane is a disgrace to speak like that about someone who has done so much for Real," Bale's agent, Jonathan Barnett, told ESPN.

"If and when Gareth goes it will be because it is in the best interest of Gareth and nothing to do with Zidane pushing."

Bale has been linked to Bayern Munich, Manchester United and Tottenham during the close season.

Barnett this week dismissed the latter link as "rubbish" amid doubts over Spurs' ability to compete financially.

Few clubs in Europe appear capable of meeting Madrid's asking price and Bale's likely wage demands, complicating LaLiga side Madrid's hopes of negotiating his exit. 

However, Zidane said: "We are working on his transfer to a new team."

Renato Sanches is content to adhere to Niko Kovac's instruction by remaining at Bayern Munich, so long as he gets opportunities to play.

Restricted to four Bundesliga starts last season, midfielder Sanches boosted his case for first-team opportunities with a strong showing in the 3-1 victory over Real Madrid in the International Champions Cup (ICC).

The Portugal international helped Bayern established superiority during the opening 45 minutes and could take on a more prominent role following the end of James Rodriguez's two-season loan deal.

Speaking ahead of the Madrid match, Kovac confirmed the club had told Sanches to forget about finding new employers, advice that has been heeded by the player.

"I'm ready to stay," Sanches told Bild.

"I had good talks with the coach and [club chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge]. I think I will stay. Kovac is the boss, he makes the decisions.

"As long as I play, I'm happy."

Bayern have one final ICC fixture to come against AC Milan, though Jerome Boateng will not be involved as he returns to Munich for personal reasons.

The centre-back, another player that seemed headed for the exit towards the end of the 2018-19 season, impressed against LaLiga giants Madrid, keeping Eden Hazard and company goalless until the 84th minute.

Club captain Manuel Neuer welcomed the increasing likelihood of Boateng and Sanches staying in Bavaria.

"We all played well today, Renato as well as Jerome," goalkeeper Neuer said after seeing off Los Blancos in Houston.

"We know what these players are capable of and we're of course happy if they stay."

Christian Eriksen put some of Europe's biggest clubs on alert when he declared he would "like to try something new" and now it seems the Tottenham star could make a surprise move.

Initial speculation suggested that Real Madrid would make a move for the talented Spurs playmaker.

As the 2019-20 season draws ever closer, however, it could be that another Spanish giant – and neighbours of Real Madrid – steal a march in the quest to land the Denmark international.

 

TOP STORY – ATLETI AND TOTTENHAM IN ERIKSEN TALKS

Atletico Madrid have enjoyed a productive transfer window – despite losing Antoine Griezmann, Rodri and Diego Godin – and could be set to swoop for Tottenham's Christian Eriksen.

The Dane has spent six seasons with the north London club but is ready for a new challenge and could join former team-mate Kieran Trippier in the Spanish capital.

AS reports that the two clubs have started discussions over a fee for the 27-year-old, with Spurs likely to demand in excess of €70million.

ROUND-UP

- Paris Saint-Germain have found their target if Neymar gets his desired move away from the Parc des Princes. According to RMC Sport, Juventus midfielder Paulo Dybala is PSG's top option if Neymar leaves.

- James Rodriguez is linked with the likes of Atletico Madrid and Napoli, and Real Madrid want around €40m for the playmaker, according to Marca.

- David de Gea will become the world's highest paid goalkeeper. The Manchester United shot-stopper has agreed to a six-year deal worth around £117m with the Premier League giants, according to The Telegraph.

- Arsenal could land Moise Kean from Juventus, but only if any deal includes a buy-back clause. The Daily Mail say Juve will insist on a £36m (€40.1m) clause in a possible deal involving the forward.

- Danny Rose is widely expected to leave Tottenham this close season, with numerous clubs linked with the left-back. Now, the Mirror report Serie A champions Juventus are the frontrunners to sign the defender.

- After Aaron Wan-Bissaka's move to Manchester United, Crystal Palace may have found their replacement. The Daily Mail report Palace have held further talks over a potential deal for Liverpool right-back Nathaniel Clyne.

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