Maxwel Cornet played down suggestions he had a "secret" to scoring against Manchester City after netting again in Lyon's win.

Cornet opened the scoring in Saturday's 3-1 victory in the Champions League quarter-final in Lisbon.

The Ivory Coast international has netted in three straight games against City, including a brace in 2018.

But the forward dismissed any talk there was a secret to his success against the Premier League giants.

"My secret to always score against City? I don't know, I don't have a secret," Cornet told a news conference.

"The most important is to do what the coach asks and be strong defensively. First, you have to do the job defensively, and then you can create some chances.

"It worked and I am very happy for the team. I am very happy with our team spirit. It's great. Let's hope we will continue."

While Kevin De Bruyne cancelled out Cornet's opener, Moussa Dembele came off the bench to score a match-winning brace.

After their upset win, Lyon will face Bayern Munich in the semi-finals on Wednesday.

Pep Guardiola urged Manchester City to "stand up" and target Champions League success again in 2020-21.

City fell in the quarter-finals for the third straight season, suffering a surprise 3-1 loss to Lyon in Lisbon on Saturday.

As the club's wait for a first Champions League title goes on, City manager Guardiola called on his side to respond next season.

"After the break we are going to start the competition again, will recover, we will restart it again and you know we try to do it again," he told a news conference.

"Of course, I'm not able with these guys to break this line, the quarter-finals. So, three years in a row in that position, we are out.

"I think what these guys have done, they deserve to do it again, or to go through and go to reach the semi-finals but we are not able, but life is how you stand up again and next season we're going to try again."

After Maxwel Cornet's opener for Lyon, Kevin De Bruyne levelled for City in the 69th minute.

But Moussa Dembele came off the bench to net a winning brace for the Ligue 1 outfit.

While there was some controversy about Dembele's first goal, Guardiola refused to make excuses.

"Listen, it happened many times in this competition but I don't want to talk about it now, I am finding, or we are finding as a club, excuses," he said.

"It is what it is, referee decides, the VAR decides in this instances, so.
We struggled in the first 15, 20 minutes to find the spaces to attack a little bit better with more consistency and after, the last 15, 20 minutes, they started to play really good, a team that's so aggressive, defensively strong like all the French teams. In the second half we are good but not good enough.

"The distance is sometimes the chances we miss and after we concede the goals, so it is what it is. Maybe one day we will break this part, the quarter-finals, I'm not able, with these incredible guys, to do it. We are going to try in the future."

Raheem Sterling would struggle to sleep after his big miss against Lyon in the Champions League quarter-final, according to Gary Lineker.

Usually so reliable in front of goal for Manchester City, Sterling blazed a glorious open-goal chance over the Lyon bar when the French side were 2-1 ahead.

An equaliser then could have seen the game swing City's way, but instead Lyon poured forward and scored another against Pep Guardiola's team, wrapping up a shock 3-1 win.

Former England striker Lineker, now a presenter with BT Sport, said Sterling got his technique wrong and attempted to apply too much power to the cross from Gabriel Jesus.

"He looked like he was in the perfect position to hit it, but he's not going to sleep very well tonight, Raheem Sterling," Lineker said.

He explained what Sterling got wrong at that critical moment.

"I tell you why he's missed it: because he's tried to hit it too hard," Lineker said.

"When you're in that position where you know you've got an open goal, the only way you can miss it is putting your foot through it, and if there is a slight bobble there is a chance it'll go over the bar.

"It's almost like he's trying to hit it with a little bit of force and there's obviously been a little bit of lift of the ball, a little bobble.

"But if you take the weight off it, you can’t miss."

Rudi Garcia proudly announced Lyon "won the tactical battle" against Pep Guardiola's Manchester City in their shock Champions League win.

Lyon reached the semi-finals with a 3-1 success in Lisbon on Saturday as City were dumped out at the quarter-final stage for the third season running.

Maxwel Cornet scored midway through the first half and Lyon rallied again following Kevin De Bruyne's equaliser, with substitute Moussa Dembele on target twice.

Lyon lined up with a 3-5-2 formation, which City matched, but Garcia's side looked far more comfortable than their opponents.

The coach explained to RMC Sport: "You have to expect everything with Guardiola, but we won the tactical battle.

"We have mastered our formation well. We have returned to a hybrid set-up to stop De Bruyne."

Tactics were not the only route to victory, though, with Garcia hailing Lyon's team spirit as they battled hard against apparently superior opposition.

"I'm proud of my troops," he said. "We believed in ourselves. We knew we were not favourites against a big team, but we managed to qualify by scoring three goals and conceding only one.

"It is linked to our collective spirit. We saw everyone working to a high level for each other."

Garcia was also pleased for Dembele, who started from the bench but made a decisive impact.

"It was a disappointment for Dembele not to start, but I told him that he would be very important," Garcia revealed.

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas paid tribute to coach Rudi Garcia following the surprise 3-1 Champions League quarter-final win over Manchester City.

The Ligue 1 side were outsiders for the contest in Lisbon despite progressing past Juventus in the previous round, but they produced a memorable victory.

Maxwel Cornet opened the scoring in the first half as City appeared uneasy with Guardiola's altered set-up and starting XI, choosing to go with a back three.

Kevin De Bruyne levelled deep into the second period, but howlers from Ederson led to Moussa Dembele netting twice in the closing stages to secure a famous win for Lyon.

It takes them to the Champions League semi-finals for the first time in 10 years and Aulas believes the achievement vindicates the decision to appoint Garcia in October after a shambolic start to the season under Sylvinho.

"It's a huge achievement, well done to Rudi, Juninho [Pernambucano, sporting director] and to the players who were magnificent," an emotional Aulas told RMC Sport.

"We had a terrible year, we started badly, we changed coaches, we had terrible injuries. We were able to recruit and react strongly.

"We have a talented team. You have to have a bit of success beyond talent, we've had some, that's why we have to remain humble. It's a very great performance.

"Garcia is a boy who does his job well. We had identified him to straighten out OL. He knew with humility, and sometimes difficulties, to do his work.

"It is the evolution towards what we have wished. Juninho knew how to support him in difficult times. It is a confirmation for me, he deserves the recognition."

Bayern Munich await in the semis, as they did a decade ago, and Aulas applauded his players for what he feels is a response to perceived injustice with the early end of Ligue 1, which left Lyon finishing the season seventh and requiring to win the Champions League just to qualify for Europe again.

"It's wonderful," Aulas said. "We have a group that has been able to transcend itself, to come together. As we have good players and only the psychological side was missing, we see that this competition comes at the right time.

"We are living fantastic moments, I'm very happy. It's great to have been able to string together a qualification against Juve and then against City.

"We know they [Juve and City] are fantastic powers. We feel that normally this team [City] should have progressed, it's a feat and a kind of resonance compared to everything we have been through in recent months.

"The players seized on this injustice which has nailed us to seventh place [in Ligue 1]. We are making results, we had to beat this team.

"It was excellent coaching from Rudi. I think of all our supporters who find pride again."

For the third successive season, Manchester City's quest for a maiden Champions League crown ends at the quarter-final stage, and once again questions will be asked of Pep Guardiola.

The Catalan coach, a visionary and the man regarded as the finest tactician in football, was brought in to take City to the next level – winning the Champions League – but familiar criticism will be levelled at him following Saturday's shock 3-1 defeat to Lyon.

That's the same Lyon who finished seventh in Ligue 1 and had played just two competitive matches since March.

Guardiola has made a habit of tinkering with his set-up for the biggest matches in recent years, so much so that his meddling – however curious – was almost to be expected here.

Were his decisions crucial? That's debatable. Were they influential? Absolutely.

Eric Garcia was given the responsibility of starting at centre-back, though once the match began the rest of Guardiola's line-up – and the fact Fernandinho dropped in as a third central defender – became clearer.

But what didn't make much sense was City's high line and why they had deferred from their strongest set-up and starting XI – Riyad Mahrez, David Silva and Bernardo Silva were all among those on the bench.

As for their defence, a layman could have pointed out that Lyon's forward pairing of Karl Toko Ekambi and Memphis Depay, as well as left wing-back Maxwel Cornet, have plenty of pace. Surely a high line would play right into their hands?

Such a backline set-up was on display, and punished on several occasions, in Bayern Munich's 8-2 win over Barcelona 24 hours earlier and it wasn't especially surprising to see Lyon exploit this when taking the lead.

After all, Lyon had already threatened with passes over City's defence when Toko Ekambi raced clear in the 24th minute. And although Garcia's last-ditch tackle was exceptional, Cornet was on hand to squeeze a delightful curled effort inside the left post with Ederson out of his goal.

City did enjoy a promising flurry late in the first half, but beyond Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling, there was very little craft on display from them.

Guardiola's side were then met with a wonderful intensity after the break, as if Rudi Garcia had told his youthful Lyon this was the opportunity of a lifetime.

It did not initially lead to much from an attacking sense, rather an increased solidity at the back – City had 71 per cent of the possession between half-time and the 60th minute but failed to create a single clear chance.

Houssem Aouar and Maxence Caqueret, the fledgling pairing in midfield, were exceptional with their effective harrying off the ball and ability to ease pressure once in possession.

Though for a time, once City had levelled through De Bruyne – teed up by Sterling – it looked as though there would be only one winner. The Premier League giants would surely have too much from there.

But Lyon suddenly sprung into life, as if they had just been hibernating, conserving energy in case a late burst was required.

Granted, there was certainly a hint of fortune about Lyon's second goal. Moussa Dembele got it, but he was helped by poor goalkeeping from Ederson and VAR, with the officials deciding he hadn't fouled Aymeric Laporte in the build-up and the offside Toko Ekambi was not interfering with play.

But from City's perspective, it saw their high line exposed yet again.

Sterling's seemingly impossible miss soon after summed up their day, and Lyon took advantage – Dembele tucking in his second a minute later after another Ederson howler.

Defeat robs Guardiola of a semi-final against his former club Bayern Munich, the dream last-four clash of many a neutral – though, on the evidence of this, Die Roten might have been in for another landslide victory such were City's defensive issues.

For all of Guardiola's qualities, several times before he has been accused of overcomplicating life for himself in games of this magnitude. He might have changed his set-up back in time against Real Madrid, but here it set the tone for the rest of the night.

His tinkering seemed unnecessary. City have more than enough ability to beat the seventh-best team in France on their own terms.

It's difficult to argue that this isn't another high-profile defeat that Guardiola has brought on himself.

Pep Guardiola explained his tactical tweaks in Manchester City's shock Champions League loss to Lyon were to try to cover his side's weaknesses and rued Raheem Sterling's costly miss.

City fell to a 3-1 defeat in Saturday's quarter-final in Lisbon, with Moussa Dembele striking twice after Kevin De Bruyne had cancelled out Maxwel Cornet's opener.

There will be much scrutiny of the tactical choices made by Guardiola, who opted to line up with an unfamiliar three-man defence with wing-backs, while Phil Foden and Bernardo Silva were unused substitutes despite the need for goals.

When asked about his line-up by BT Sport, Guardiola said: "No, what we have done is try to cover our weak points in comparing with the strong points, like they make incredible [moves] in the channels with the two-v-two.

"[After the] first 15-20 minutes of the first half, it was magnificent, we unblocked our respect a little bit, or we struggled to find our spaces to attack and in the same shape we played well in the final 10-15 minutes. 

"We created chances, scored a magnificent goal, but unfortunately missed another one."

The match was defined by a scarcely believable period in which Sterling blazed over the crossbar with the goal wide open before Dembele pounced on a poor parry from Ederson at the other end to make it 3-1 and all but end City's hopes.

Guardiola accepted that to progress in the Champions League such errors cannot occur.

"In this situation, you have to equalise and go to extra-time in the last minutes, and after, we concede the third goal," he added.

"In this competition, you have to be perfect. We created more chances, more shooting, but unfortunately we are out again."

It marks the third straight season City have fallen at the quarter-final stage under Guardiola, who remains convinced his side will eventually end that hoodoo.

"One day we will break this gap to the semis. In the first 20, 25 minutes, we struggled to find spaces to attack," he said.

"The second half was okay - we were there. I had a feeling we were better. You have to be perfect in this competition."

Lyon's second goal was not without controversy with the VAR checking for a potential foul on Aymeric Laporte, while City also appealed in vain for offside against Karl Toko Ekambi, who let the ball pass through his legs to the onside Dembele.

Guardiola was not in the mood to find excuses for his team's failure, though.

"I don't know. I don't want to talk about the circumstances sometimes, you know I don't wanna talk, it looks like i am complaining or finding excuses, we are out," he reasoned. 

"I had the feeling we were incredible already. We did a lot of good things, but we made a lot of mistakes in the boxes in the key moments."

Kevin De Bruyne says Manchester City "need to learn" as their repeated Champions League failures are "not good enough".

City were favourites for this season's competition heading to the quarter-finals in Lisbon, yet they were stunned by Lyon on Saturday, crashing out with a 3-1 defeat.

It is the third consecutive campaign in which Pep Guardiola's side have been beaten in the last eight after a humbling at the hands of Liverpool and then a dramatic loss to Tottenham, both of whom would subsequently reach the final.

De Bruyne equalised for City after Maxwel Cornet's first-half opener, but a Moussa Dembele brace - the first contentious, the second courtesy of an Ederson error - saw Lyon through.

City's talismanic midfielder told BT Sport afterwards: "We need to learn. It's not good enough. That's it."

He added: "It's a different year, same stuff. I think the first half wasn't good enough, I think we know that.

"We started slow. We had not many options, but I think second half we played really well.

"We come back to 1-1, missed a couple of chances and then, obviously, the 2-1, the 3-1 ends the game. It's a shame for us to go out in that way."

Raheem Sterling had a glaring miss at 2-1 that would have brought City level again and De Bruyne acknowledged big matches turn on such moments.

"Even at 2-1, if Raz scores the goal, it's 2-2 and the game goes on," he said. "That's football, those fine margins, they make the difference. It's 3-1 and it's all over."

There was controversy surrounding Dembele's first, as Karl Toko Ekambi was offside and let the ball through his legs, while Aymeric Laporte claimed to have been fouled.

But De Bruyne did not look for excuses, saying: "I have no idea, I've not seen it back. Whatever they decide, they decide.

"I'm not going to blame that. I think we should have done better. I'd have to look back to see whatever it was."

Manchester City again came unstuck against Lyon in the Champions League as a controversial 3-1 defeat saw Pep Guardiola miss out on a semi-final against his former club Bayern Munich.

Lyon won away to City in the 2018-19 group stage - also drawing at home - and they again had the tournament favourites' number in Lisbon on Saturday.

Maxwel Cornet scored in both prior meetings between the sides and was on target once more midway through the first half as City struggled to get to grips with the five-man defence named by Guardiola.

That formation was ditched before the hour mark and Kevin De Bruyne equalised, but substitute Moussa Dembele restored Lyon's lead following a contentious counter-attack with 11 minutes remaining and then added another after an Ederson error.

Raheem Sterling remarkably missed an open goal between Dembele's decisive strikes as City suffered further European misery in stunning fashion.

Pep Guardiola can enhance his Manchester City legacy by guiding the club to Champions League glory, according to former Arsenal and Chelsea full-back Ashley Cole.

City beat Spanish champions Real Madrid 2-1 in last week's last-16 second leg to seal a 4-2 aggregate victory and advance through to the final-eight mini tournament in Lisbon.

Lyon are up next in Saturday's quarter-final clash as City look to reach the last four for just a second time, where Bayern Munich await after their 8-2 demolition of another of Guardiola's former teams, Barcelona.

Cole is a big fan of Guardiola's work and believes more silverware could follow should the Catalan coach end his nine-year wait for a third Champions League trophy.

But the Chelsea academy coach also warned Guardiola may use the opportunity to bow out in style, having already won a clean sweep of domestic honours at the Etihad Stadium.

"He's done a great job at Man City in terms of transformation," Cole told Stats Perform News.

"He's got them playing beautiful, attacking football with an understanding of rotation and it's good on the eye.

"But who knows? If he wins the Champions League, you never know what might happen.

"As a football fan and someone who enjoys watching City play, I'd of course love Pep to stay and continue the legacy he has started and keep fighting for trophies."

However, Lyon took four points off City in last season's knockout stage and dumped Italian champions Juventus out of this year's competition in the first knockout stage.

And Cole, who spent two seasons playing under Lyon boss Rudi Garcia at Roma, says City cannot look past the contest at the Estadio Jose Alvalade.

"Some people might say it's an easy task for Man City, but Lyon have come through some difficult games," he said.

"To beat Juventus over two legs and qualify shows the quality they have. I know the quality Rudi Garcia has - tactically he is very aware, so it will be a very tough game for Man City.

"It's not an easy task for City and I think this will be a very difficult game. Anyone can win it.

"Lyon have some very dangerous players. I think Lyon could win, Man City could win."

Goodbye Quique Setien?

Barcelona's Champions League horror show against Bayern Munich is reportedly the final straw for the club's hierarchy.

Who will replace the former Real Betis boss at Camp Nou?

 

TOP STORY – BARCA TO SACK SETIEN

Barcelona have decided to sack head coach Quique Setien, according to journalist Fabrizio Romano.

LaLiga giants Barca were humiliated in the Champions League quarter-finals on Friday following an 8-2 defeat to Bundesliga holders Bayern Munich.

Barca have already decided Setien – who replaced Ernesto Valverde in January – will not continue in 2020-21, and former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has already been linked, while club great Xavi and Massimiliano Allegri are other possible options.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Star reports Manchester United are eyeing Atletico Madrid star Saul Niguez. United have been linked to the Spain international previously and are believed to be ready to revive their interest.

- Staying at Old Trafford and the Evening Standard says United remain in talks with Borussia Dortmund regarding Jadon Sancho. Dortmund insist Sancho will not leave the Bundesliga side, though United are reportedly still in negotiations for the England international. Meanwhile, Outlet Republika in Serbia claims United have agreed to sign teenage sensation Filip Stevanovic from Partizan Belgrade before loaning him back to the capital club.

- Hella Verona defender Marash Kumbulla wants to join Inter, Sky Sport Italia claims. Kumbulla has been linked to Napoli, Lazio and Juventus.

Bayern Munich want to keep loanee Ivan Perisic, according to Sky Sport Italia. Perisic has spent the season on loan from Inter and Bayern are hoping to negotiate a permanent deal.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic wants to remain at Milan and could soon sign a new contract with the Rossoneri, reports Calciomercato.

- Foot Mercato claims Barca could consider re-signing Thiago Alcantara from Bayern. Thiago, who left Barca in 2013, has been tipped to join Liverpool, while Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City have emerged as possible destinations.

Arsenal are planning to sign Thomas Partey from Atletico following the arrival of William, reports The Daily Star.

Lyon will take inspiration from Paris Saint-Germain's Champions League heroics when they seek to book their own semi-final spot at the expense of Manchester City.

Rudi Garcia cited PSG's stunning last-gasp revival against Atalanta as a source of motivation for his side, who face City in Lisbon on Saturday.

PSG scored twice in stoppage time to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, while RB Leipzig reached the last four for the first time with a late 2-1 triumph over seasoned campaigners Atletico Madrid.

Both of those results – as well as Lyon's last-16 success over Juventus – gave Garcia cause for optimism as he looked ahead to taking on Pep Guardiola's City, themselves eyeing a maiden Champions League title.

"It would be historic to have two French clubs in the semi-finals, we must be inspired by what PSG did," said Garcia.

"Having eliminated Juventus, that must give us confidence.

"We want to stay a long time in Lisbon, even if City are the big favourites of this confrontation.

"But the start of the quarter-finals showed that favourite teams can be roughed up."

Garcia is ready for the fact City are likely to have more of the ball, but the Frenchman is backing his side to stand up to the challenge.

"We know very well that we will not win the battle of possession against this team, because it is part of its identity," said the former Roma coach.

"But we must not let this team and its individualities pose problems for us. But it's not the system that matters, it's what you put in it, the animation.

"You also have to be able to press high and play with our strengths."

The two teams met in the group stage of the 2018-19 Champions League, with Lyon earning a 2-1 win at the Etihad Stadium following a 2-2 draw on home soil.

Pep Guardiola looks set to have to contend without Sergio Aguero as the Manchester City boss warned there will be no margin for error in Saturday's Champions League showdown with Lyon.

The tournament's revised format means the two clubs will meet in a straight knockout game in Lisbon, having each come through tough two-legged ties to reach the quarter-finals.

While City ousted Real Madrid, Lyon got the better of Juventus, a result which in itself put Guardiola – who all but ruled Aguero out – on high alert.

On the subject of his talismanic striker, who had knee surgery in June, the City boss said: "He is still in Barcelona making a recovery."

Speaking about the threat of this weekend's Ligue 1 opponents, Guardiola said: "We saw the games against Juventus, some other games in the French league.

"They are organised, aggressive, so fast. People up front, wing-backs, the quality in the team is something else.

"This is a quarter-final. It won't be easy.

"The pressure is always there, we try to do our best like the other teams. We saw how tight it was in the last two [Champions League knockout] games, tomorrow will be no exception.

"It's a final so it's one game. We'll try to avoid mistakes so they can't punish us."

Guardiola felt the exceptional circumstances imposed by coronavirus have brought the best of out his players and he has even managed to enjoy some wining and dining in Portugal.

He said: "I am proud of how they have been these two or three weeks. Since lockdown they have been incredibly focused.

"We ate good, we drink good wine here in Portugal and now is the time to show ourselves.

"I want to see my team be who they are, do everything they do in their soul, their minds and after that the football will dictate if we deserve it."

A European triumph would represent a fine way for David Silva to conclude his long and illustrious City career, and Guardiola revealed the midfield maestro is primed and ready.

"Absolutely he is ready," Guardiola said. "The way he has trained and the mentality, I am really impressed.

"We all know it was a pity his last game in the Etihad was without the people. But he will be back when the people can come back and he will get what he deserves."

Kyle Walker says winning the Champions League is imperative for putting Manchester City onto the "next pedestal".

A 2-1 win at home to Real Madrid last week saw City reach the quarter-finals of Europe's premier club competition courtesy of a 4-2 aggregate triumph in their delayed last-16 tie.

Domestically, it has been a trophy-laded decade for City, who have won the Premier League four times, the FA Cup twice and the EFL Cup on five occasions since 2011.

The Champions League has proven an elusive trophy, though, with a run to the semi-finals in the 2015-2016 season the furthest they have managed.

England full-back Walker, who joined from Tottenham ahead of the 2017-18 campaign, concedes his own ambitions have changed and feels winning the Champions League will put City on another level.

"I think if you had asked me this two years ago when I signed here, I would have probably said that the Premier League was the big one for me having not won it before," he said.

"Now I have collected two of them and a number of others and this is the one that I want, and I can probably speak on behalf of the whole squad and Manchester City as well for what they need as a club to put them onto that next pedestal."

City's last-eight date with Lyon is being played in Lisbon as a straight-knockout game with UEFA altering the competition's format due to the delay caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Walker acknowledges the different circumstances but insists City will not waver from their approach.

"It is a unique situation that we are in but I feel like we just have to attack it as we attack every game, whether that is in the Premier League, cups or Champions League," he added.

"We feel that our team as a whole and the way that we play and our philosophy is going to stand us in good stead to get us to where we want to be in the tournament, which is the final."

City's defeat of LaLiga champions Madrid means they start as favourites but Lyon took four points off Pep Guardiola's side in last season's Champions League and defeated Serie A winners Juventus to get to this stage.

Walker says such facts prove Lyon are not a team to take lightly.

"I think [that] speaks volumes. This year they don't have the players that they had when we played against them but you need to be a very good team, very disciplined, to beat Juventus over two legs," he said.

"We are just going to use the gameplan, listen to the tactics from the boss and hopefully that will see us over the line.

"I feel it can swing our way in that it is over just the one leg and we can really attack the game and play every game like a final."

So, the Jadon Sancho saga rambles on.

Manchester United want to sign Sancho, but Borussia Dortmund are adamant the 20-year-old will be staying put in 2020-21.

Could Barcelona and Real Madrid enter the mix?

 

TOP STORY – UNITED BRACED FOR SANCHO BATTLE

Manchester United believe Barcelona and Real Madrid will enter the race to sign Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho, according to The Mirror.

United have identified Sancho as their number one transfer target, however, Dortmund continually insist the England international will not leave the Bundesliga team.

If United fail to land Sancho this off-season, the Red Devils are bracing for a three-way battle with LaLiga giants Barca and Madrid next year.

ROUND-UP

- Cristiano Ronaldo to Barcelona? The Juventus superstar's entourage told AS he is happy in Italy, despite claims the former Madrid forward has been offered to the LaLiga outfit as the Scudetto holders look to free up cash.

- Journalist Fabrizio Romano claims Premier League champions Liverpool are in contact with Bundesliga holders Bayern Munich regarding Thiago Alcantara. The Spanish star has also emerged as a possible target for Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain.

- Tuttosport says Paulo Dybala could be offered to United in exchange for Paul Pogba. Dybala has been linked with Juve exits as the Serie A champions look to slash their wage bill. Dybala could be the player sacrificed in a bid to lure Pogba back to Turin, while Madrid and PSG are believed to be interested in the Argentina international.

- Barcelona star Luis Suarez is wanted by Qatari outfit Al-Arabi, says beIN SPORTS. Suarez is contracted to the LaLiga giants until 2021 as Barca eye Inter forward Lautaro Martinez as his long-term replacement.

Juve are eyeing a move for Atalanta forward Duvan Zapata, reports Calciomercato. Zapata starred as Atalanta finished third in Serie A and reached the Champions League quarter-finals. Juve – now led by Andrea Pirlo – have also been linked with Napoli's Arkadiusz Milik and Roma veteran Edin Dzeko.

- The Sun claims City are considering a £40million bid for Tottenham midfielder Harry Winks.

United are challenging rivals Chelsea for Leicester City full-back Ben Chilwell, who is valued at £80m, according to The Mirror.

Napoli are eyeing a double Roma raid, with Gazzetta dello Sport saying Cengiz Under and Jordan Veretout are on the list. With Jose Callejon and Allan set to leave, Napoli want to sign Roma's Under and Veretout.

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