Rising Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz says he could consider moving away from the Bundesliga, despite admitting "you can't go wrong" with Bayern Munich.

The 20-year-old has been linked with a host of top clubs in Europe, including Manchester United, Barcelona and Real Madrid.

The Germany international is also a reported target for Bayern, with Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Voller claiming in August that the Bundesliga champions had made enquiries.

Havertz is prepared to keep his options open when it comes to his future, suggesting Bayern or a foreign club could be equally appealing.

"They're probably the biggest club in Germany and there are many players that were very successful at a young age that went there," he told Marca when asked about Bayern's apparent interest. "Therefore, I get linked with Bayern, but we'll see what happens.

"There are players that want to stay close to their family and others say, 'I want to live in another country'. There's something clear: if you want to be a star in Germany, you can't go wrong with Bayern.

"I think I've picked up enough international experience at Leverkusen. I know the rhythm of these international matches and I'm confident that I can go abroad at any moment and play at clubs outside of Germany. For the moment, I want to have a good season. Afterwards, we'll see."

Havertz believes his style of play as an attacking midfielder would make him a suitable signing for Barca, whose former captain happens to be his favourite Spanish player.

When it was suggested his style suits Barca, he replied: "Yes, because Barcelona have a lot of the ball, but there are lots of teams that do that these days, not only Barcelona.

"Real Madrid, for example, are a team that have a lot of possession, although they've been a bit less efficient than Barcelona in recent years.

"There are many players that inspired me like Kaka, [Zinedine] Zidane, Ronaldinho... they've always been my idols. Between the Spanish players, my favourite is Andres Iniesta. He's outstanding on the ball. Unique. I like him the most."

Zinedine Zidane wants Gareth Bale to remain a Real Madrid player for at least the rest of the campaign.

Bale was heavily linked with a move to Jiangsu Suning during the close season but the deal fell through and he remained at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Reports this week suggested Madrid will offer Manchester City £70million (€81m) and the 30-year-old in exchange for Raheem Sterling.

However, Zidane has no doubt Bale has an important role to play for Madrid beyond the January transfer window.

"I want Gareth to stay here until the end of the season," Zidane told a news conference ahead of Wednesday's Champions League home game against Galatasaray.

"People keep saying that I want him to leave in January, it's nonsense. Our fans have to think positively, as the player wants to be with us.

"He has returned here and wants to recover, but he simply hasn't recovered yet."

Bale has not featured for Madrid for a month, having sustained an injury during Wales' 1-1 draw with Croatia on October 13.

Despite that fact, Bale has been named in the Wales squad for crunch Euro 2020 qualifiers against Azerbaijan and Hungary, with Ryan Giggs stating the winger had assured him he would arrive ready to play.

"He's not training normally, so we'll see on a day-to-day basis. His country has a right to pick him, it's a FIFA date so we can't do anything about that. But what the player wants is to be fit and ready," said Zidane.

"He's been back training in the last week and we'll see if he's ready to play for his national team, but the shame for us at the moment is he's not ready to play for us."

Zidane denied he has strained relationship with Bale, adding: "We say, 'Good morning' to each other every day.

"I love all my players. We can't all have the same close relationship but I've never had any problem with Gareth, even when there was talk of him leaving. I'm happy with him.

"You [the media] need to stop always saying the same thing or asking me about him leaving matches early, because I used to do the same.

"The important thing is that he was with the team before the match and at half-time to support them.

"You look for things that aren't there. He wants to see the team win, I have no doubts about that."

Zinedine Zidane is well aware Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe's "dream" is to play for Real Madrid.

Mbappe scored 33 goals in 29 Ligue 1 appearances for PSG in 2018-19 but stated during the close season he was open to "a new project".

Former Monaco vice-president Vadim Vasilyev this week claimed the World Cup-winning attacker told him he moved to the French capital in 2017 because it was "too early" for him to make the switch to the Santiago Bernabeu.

Asked if he thinks Mbappe will play for Madrid in the future, Zidane told a news conference: "I don't know, it's the player who decides.

"At the moment he plays for Paris Saint-Germain, we'll see in the future if that changes. I know he always said his dream is to play for Real Madrid."

Madrid will meet PSG in their penultimate Champions League Group A game on November 26, but Thomas Tuchel's side could be out of reach in top spot by that point if they beat Club Brugge and Los Blancos draw with Galatasaray on Wednesday.

"We're always happy to play at home but there's a responsibility as well because it's a Champions League match and we want to play a good game and for that we have to be well prepared," Zidane said of Gala's impending visit.

"We always go into these games with the same idea, the same attitude. We're in good shape, we know what we have to do and I'm not too worried whether it's like a final or not.

"I think you just have to think about going out and playing a good game, hope the fans are with you and go out and try to win the game and hope everyone plays well.

"We always need the fans with us and I think they always are with us. They want to see their team play well and win and that's what we need, we need the fans to help us and be with us in the difficult moments of a match, that's what it's about.

"The other day [a 0-0 draw at home to Real Betis in LaLiga on Saturday] it was difficult for us to get a goal but we need the fans with us and the players need the fans with us."

Raheem Sterling dreams of playing abroad and could be about to get his wish.

Real Madrid reportedly want to sign the Manchester City star after succeeding in their attempts to lure Eden Hazard from Chelsea.

To make the deal happen, the Spanish giants are ready to send Gareth Bale back to the Premier League.

 

TOP STORY – SANTIAGO BERNABEU CALLING FOR STERLING

China continues to loom as the likeliest escape route for Gareth Bale, but Real Madrid might just have a different destination in mind.

According to Sky Sports, Madrid are preparing to offer the Wales winger plus £70million in a bid to prise Raheem Sterling from Manchester City.

Whether the Premier League champions have any interest in 30-year-old Bale is another matter, while the long-term contract extension Sterling signed last November gives them a strong bargaining position.

 

ROUND-UP

- Fresh speculation linking Kylian Mbappe to Zinedine Zidane's Madrid will prompt Paris Saint-Germain to offer the France forward an enticing new deal worth around €40million per season, Le Parisien reports. Mbappe has just over two years left on his current contract.

PSG are not just busy attempting to tie down their own players. De Telegraaf claims the Ligue 1 champions are one of three clubs expressing interest in Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana. Tottenham and Manchester United have also reportedly made contact with the 23-year-old's agent.

- Chelsea have identified several big-name January targets if their transfer ban is lifted at an appeal hearing later this month. Borussia Dortmund teenager Jadon Sancho, Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha and Lyon striker Moussa Dembele are the primary targets according to The Telegraph, which also lists Ben Chilwell and Nathan Ake among the names interesting Frank Lampard.

- Rade Krunic, one of AC Milan's better performers in the weekend loss to Lazio, will not be allowed to leave the club on loan, despite Bosnia and Herzegovina boss Robert Prosinecki advising him to seek more playing time. Calciomercato say the recent Rossoneri signing is part of Stefano Pioli's plans and will be staying put at San Siro.

Ernesto Valverde has challenged Ousmane Dembele to earn his place in the Barcelona team after the forward was surprisingly left out against Levante.

Dembele was not part of Valverde's squad for Saturday's shock 3-1 loss in LaLiga, despite being available again after serving a two-game suspension.

Barca let slip a one-goal lead as they conceded three times in the space of seven minutes in the second half, their hopes of a recovery not aided by the loss of Luis Suarez to a calf injury before the interval.

The presence of Dembele on the bench may have helped Valverde at the weekend, though the Blaugrana boss is adamant the France international must show he deserves to be regularly involved.

"Everyone always has to earn their place - Dembele is no exception," Valverde told the media ahead of Tuesday's Champions League game against Slavia Prague.

"When he plays, he can stay in that position [if he plays well], as happens to Ansu [Fati], Luis [Suarez], [Antoine] Griezmann or [Gerard] Pique.

"When you have your chance, you will have to try to stay [in the team]."

Valverde was also questioned over the future of Riqui Puig amid reports the midfielder may push to leave in January to get first-team football – he is yet to feature for Barca so far this season.

"I don't know what can happen in the next transfer window - there is still time," Valverde said when asked about the rumours the 20-year-old is considering his future at Camp Nou.

"We have a lot of midfielders. With his talent, it is clear he will play at Barca. What we do not know is when."

Cardiff City have been threatened with a three-window transfer ban by FIFA if they fail to pay the first instalment of the fee owed to Nantes for the late Emiliano Sala.

The FIFA Players' Status Committee ruled in September that Cardiff must hand over a €6million (£5.3m) payment for club-record signing Sala, who, along with pilot David Ibbotson, died when their Piper Malibu aircraft crashed in January. 

Sala had accepted a move but Cardiff claimed the agreement to pay Nantes £15m was not legally binding because conditions insisted upon by the selling club were not fulfilled.

Cardiff announced in a statement last month that they intend to appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport, but world football governing body FIFA has outlined its reasons and ordered the Welsh side to pay up.

FIFA confirmed in a 21-page document published on Monday that the threat of a ban, which would run through until the end of the 2020-21 campaign, will be lifted if Cardiff make the payment within 45 days.

Chelsea's appeal against a transfer ban imposed by FIFA will be heard at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on November 20.

The Premier League side were blocked from signing new players for two transfer windows in February after breaching rules relating to the international transfer and registration of players under the age of 18.

That ban was partially upheld following Chelsea's initial appeal to FIFA, although the club are still unable to bring in senior players, serving the first part of their suspension in the recent transfer window.

Chelsea were permitted to register players under the age of 16, but the club announced their intention to take the case to CAS.

The Blues are pressing ahead with their case ahead of the January transfer window, with the CAS hearing date now confirmed for later this month.

Jurgen Klopp has praised Adam Lallana for making the most of his opportunities but remains unsure if the midfielder will still be a Liverpool player next season.

The 31-year-old was preferred to the likes of Fabinho, Naby Keita, James Milner and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for Saturday's 2-1 comeback victory at Aston Villa.

Lallana was replaced six minutes from time with Liverpool a goal behind at Villa Park, but Klopp was pleased with his performance and said it was an easy decision to start him in holding midfield.

"It was not so difficult because we had a look at the things we needed against Villa and I think you saw how good Adam Lallana worked in that system," he said.

"It's a game where we had a lot of possession. We had to see how Adam recovered from midweek, but at the moment he is fine. The decision was not so difficult.

"Adam did really well, he played a really good game. In a game like this, you need that kind of deeper playmaker. That's how it is.

"From that position, pass the ball, chip the ball, all that stuff. And he did that. He had a lot of ball recoveries, was good in the air, it was a good game."

Lallana is into his sixth season with Liverpool but is out of contract at the end of the campaign and has emerged as a rumoured target for clubs in MLS and China.

He has struggled with a number of injury issues in recent years and Klopp cannot guarantee the England international will remain at Anfield beyond next year.

"I don't know what happens in May - for anybody, actually - but the best thing as a footballer is when you get the opportunity to play well, to do so. That is what Adam is doing," he said.

"When he came on against Manchester United he was good. He has played really good games and is brilliant in training.

"After a long time with some injuries, he is in outstanding shape physically. That's the most important thing for his career. As for the rest, we will see."

Andy Robertson and Sadio Mane scored late on in Saturday's match as Liverpool stretched their unbeaten run in the Premier League to 28 matches since January.

The Reds came from behind to win three matches in the space of a week in all competitions, having also done so against Tottenham and Arsenal, which Lallana puts down to a never-say-die attitude.

"It's almost like a sixth sense," he said. "We knew at half-time against Villa that, if we got one goal, it's going to count. We got it late but we still had time. It doesn't surprise me that we got a second goal.

"Even though we weren't at our best in the first half, it helps towards the 'never say never'. We've just got that momentum."

The writing has long been on the wall for Gareth Bale.

Zinedine Zidane wanted him gone from Real Madrid before the previous transfer window closed, but a move did not materialise.

But as the January window approaches, Bale is reportedly ready to leave.

 

TOP STORY – GARETH WANTS TO BALE

Gareth Bale wants to leave Real Madrid in January amid links to the Chinese Super League, according to Cadena Ser.

Bale was poised to make a shock switch to China after being told to move on by Madrid head coach Zinedine Zidane, though the Welshman remained at the Santiago Bernabeu.

However, Bale is reportedly desperate for a January exit and wants Madrid to listen to offers from the CSL.

 

ROUND-UP

- According to Calciomercato, Zlatan Ibrahimovic has offered himself to former club Juventus. Bologna have confirmed their interest in the LA Galaxy striker, whose contract is set to expire. A-League team Perth Glory want to bring the 38-year-old to Australia. Ibrahimovic spent two years at Juventus, however, the Serie A champions are reportedly not prepared to bring back the veteran as they look to trim their squad in January.

Roma are close to reaching an agreement with Manchester United for on-loan defender Chris Smalling. Calciomercato reports the Serie A side are preparing to present a €17million (£14.6m) offer for the Englishman.

William Saliba is yet to play a match for Arsenal but he could already be on the move. Saliba signed for the Gunners in July before he was immediately loaned back to Saint-Etienne for the 2019-20 season. However, Defensa Central claims Real Madrid are eyeing the 18-year-old French defender. Monaco's Benoit Badiashile and Boubacar Kamara of Marseille are also on the list to potentially replace Raphael Varane.

- The Telegraph says Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana is a target for clubs in the Chinese Super League and MLS. Lallana is out of contract at the end of the season.

Ronald Koeman dominates the frontpage of Monday's SPORT newspaper. The Netherlands boss is heavily linked to Barcelona having revealed a release clause in his contract, and amid growing pressure on head coach Ernesto Valverde .

- Former Juventus head coach Massimiliano Allegri and ex-Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta are among the candidates to replace Unai Emery should the Gunners sack the Spaniard, according to the Mirror. Allegri has also been linked to Bayern Munich and Manchester United, while Arteta is serving as Pep Guardiola's Manchester City assistant. Jose Mourinho has also reportedly emerged as an option.

Kylian Mbappe plans to join Real Madrid after turning down the chance during his time at Monaco, according to former vice-president Vadim Vasilyev.

Mbappe initially moved to Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain on loan from rivals Monaco in 2017 before making the transfer permanent in a €145million deal the following year.

Madrid were interested in Mbappe prior to the French sensation swapping Monaco for Paris, and the LaLiga powerhouse continue to be linked with the 20-year-old forward.

Vasilyev, who knows Mbappe well from their time together at Stade Louis II, believes the 2018 World Cup winner will eventually make the move to Madrid.

"Why did he not sign at Real?," Vasilyev told Telefoot. "He told me: 'Vadim, I think it's too early, I'm Parisian, I do not want to leave my country like that, I want to become a great player here. Real Madrid will wait, that's what I think'.

"I told him, 'Kylian, you're right'. He wants to win. And of course the Champions League must be won for a player like that. If he wins it with Paris, it's better."

Vasilyev added: "They [Real Madrid] will knock on your door. The entire Estadio Santiago Bernabeu will applaud you when you get there."

"He remains the same person, the same Kylian. It's just that he has gained importance, power in the global landscape," Vasilyev said.

"I know Cristiano Ronaldo quite well, and he always wants to break all records, go further. Kylian is the same."

Mbappe, who won the Ligue 1 title in his final season at Monaco, has flourished with PSG in the French capital.

He has claimed back-to-back Ligue 1 trophies, as well as Coupe de France, Coupe de la Ligue and Trophee des Champions silverware.

After scoring 39 goals across all competitions in 2018-19, Mbappe has netted nine times for Thomas Tuchel's PSG this season.

The father of Bayern Munich's Thiago Alcantara said the midfielder is more than happy at the Bundesliga giants.

Thiago, 28, is in his seventh season at Bayern, a stint full of trophies and regular success.

Given the midfielder's Spanish roots, and the fact he progressed through the Barcelona system, a return to LaLiga has always seemed a possibility.

Yet Thiago's father, Mazinho, told Mundo Deportivo: "He is very happy.

"It is his seventh season, he has one and a half more to finish his contract.

"He is in a spectacular club, which has made him a great contract and has a great respect for players and former players.

"When I go there, I realise that it is something out of the ordinary."

Asked what move Thiago will make in the future, Mazinho was unsure.

"I do not know what will happen," he added.

"I don't know if he will want to return to Spain or be somewhere closer to us."

Thiago has made more than 200 first-team appearances for Bayern, who are bidding to win their eighth successive Bundesliga crown.

A 10-man Bayern were thrashed 5-1 at Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday and sit fourth in the table, four points behind leaders Borussia Monchengladbach.

Out of work and looking for a job – Massimiliano Allegri could be poised for a return to the dugout.

Allegri left Juventus at the end of 2018-19 after guiding the Old Lady to five consecutive Serie A titles.

The Italian coach has been linked to Manchester United but, with Niko Kovac on the brink at Bayern Munich, Allegri could find himself in Bavaria.

 

TOP STORY – BAYERN GO FOR ALLEGRI

Bayern Munich want former Juventus head coach Massimiliano Allegri to replace Niko Kovac, according to Corriere dello Sport.

Kovac is on the verge of being sacked after Bayern's humiliating 5-1 defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday, with the Bundesliga champions cancelling Sunday's public training session as pressure mounts.

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino and Ajax's Erik ten Hag have been linked but Bayern have reportedly identified the man to take over in Munich.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Mirror claims Manchester United are ready to hijack Liverpool's move for RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner. Champions League holders Liverpool have been linked to Werner, however, United want to bring the Germany international to Old Trafford in January.

Perth Glory are still optimistic they can lure Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Australia, reports The West Australian. After revealing an approach for Ibrahimovic on a guest-player contract, A-League side Perth have seen Serie A outfit Bologna confirm their interest in the 38-year-old striker ahead of the January transfer window. Ibrahimovic's LA Galaxy contract will expire before the end of the year.

Tottenham are eyeing a January swoop for Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana. With Hugo Lloris out injured, Spurs are on the lookout for a new keeper and £35million could see Eredivisie champions Ajax sell the Cameroon international.

- According to the Guardian, Arsenal have joined United and Juventus in the transfer chase for Salzburg sensation Erling Haaland.

- Mundo Deportivo says Barcelona have dropped their interest in Inter centre-back Milan Skriniar. The Slovakia international has established himself as one of the best defenders in the world since joined Inter in 2017.

United and Paris Saint-Germain are leading the race to sign Juventus midfielder Emre Can, according to Corriere dello Sport.

Inter CEO Giuseppe Marotta played down speculation linking star forward Lautaro Martinez to Barcelona and Manchester United.

Martinez's fine start to the season has seen him emerge as a target for LaLiga champions Barca and struggling Premier League giants United.

The 22-year-old Argentina international, whose agent has talked up interest from Barca in the past, has scored seven goals this term.

Asked about rumours that Barca and United are poised to activate Martinez's €111million release clause, Marotta told Sky Sport Italia: "This is all media talk.

"Our players are happy to be with us and a player must express its desire to leave if he wants to go. We don't tend to sell important players, Inter are a very important club.

"Of course, part of this job is to deal with situations as they present themselves."

Martinez, who arrived from Racing Club in 2018-19, has scored five Serie A goals this term and seven across all competitions for Antonio Conte's Inter.

Inter defeated Bologna 2-1 on Saturday to stay within a point of defending champions Juventus after 11 games.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic joining Bologna is a real possibility, according to the Serie A club's sporting director Walter Sabatini.

Ibrahimovic is set to become one of world football's most in-demand free agents with his LA Galaxy contract set to expire next month.

The MLS side are keen to extend their association with the former Sweden striker, who has suggested on social media he could return to Spain.

A-League club Perth Glory are among the teams to have confirmed their interest in Ibrahimovic, who has also been heavily linked with Napoli and a possible return to Manchester United.

It appears Bologna are also keen on the 38-year-old.

"Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Bologna is a real possibility," Sabatini told Sky Sport Italia. "Trust me, it's not impossible.

"He's considering our offer because he wants to help Sinisa Mihajlovic.

"We're trying to make it possible. It'd be fantastic. Let's see..."

Bologna 12th in the Serie A table with one win in their past eight league games after Saturday's 2-1 home loss to Inter.

Mihajlovic, the club's coach, has been undergoing treatment for leukaemia after confirming his diagnosis in July.

Ibrahimovic, whose former clubs also include Ajax, Inter, Barcelona, AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain, has hit 53 goals in 58 MLS games for Galaxy.

A new striker in January is a priority at Manchester United and reports suggest a familiar face could make a sensational return to England.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has previously said the club will be doing business after Christmas, with a striker still required following the departures of Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez.

Marcus Rashford has scored three goals in his previous two matches, while Anthony Martial marked his return from injury with a goal against Norwich City last Sunday, but a surprising name could provide the answer to United's depth issues up top.

 

TOP STORY – MANCHESTER UNITED MAKE CONTACT WITH IBRAHIMOVIC

Manchester United have made contact with former striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, according to TuttoMercatoWeb.

Ibrahimovic scored 30 goals in MLS for LA Galaxy in 2019, but they were eliminated from the post-season after a 5-3 defeat to cross-town rivals LAFC in the Western Conference semi-finals last weekend.

Interest in the former Barcelona, Inter Milan and Paris Saint-Germain striker has increased since the end of LA Galaxy's season with the Swede still believing he can contribute at the highest level.

The 38-year-old is currently a free agent and scored 29 goals at Old Trafford in a brief spell with the club previously.

ROUND-UP

- One player who may create funds for Manchester United's January business is defender Chris Smalling, but Corriere dello Sport claim the Red Devils want double the €10 million price Roma are expecting to pay for him. 

- AS are reporting Edinson Cavani is weighing up his future at Paris Saint-Germain with Atletico Madrid and Inter Miami keeping tabs on the Uruguayan.

Stefano Sensi is currently on-loan at Inter Milan from Sassuolo, but Sport claim Sensi's agent is in Barcelona as speculation of a move to the Spanish champions grows.

- The Daily Mail claims Wolves will turn to Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes in January as they seek reinforcements to cover the injured Willy Boly.

- Chelsea are interested in signing Hertha Berlin winger Javairo Dilrosun when their transfer ban expires, according to Calciomercato.

- L'Equipe say Nantes are among several clubs showing interest in free agent forward Hatem Ben Arfa.

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