Tuesday’s Transfer Rumor Roundup: Mata, Salah, Muntari and one last stop for Eto’o

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Samuel Eto’o scored a bunch of goals the other day in Chelsea’s rout of Manchester United, but the 32-year-old striker was talking about Spain just one day later. Eto’o, who scored 108 goals in 145 matches for Barcelona, is being encouraged by his son to return to one of his other former La Liga homes. Will Eto’o finish his career at Real Mallorca?

Gary Lineker has a way with words, and as rumors continue to swirl regarding Juan Mata’s potential move from Chelsea to Manchester United, the English pundit says the move adds plenty of optimism for attractive football from David Moyes struggling and injured side.

Modibo Maiga was a hot commodity before arriving at Upton Park, with Newcastle one of the teams “missing out” on the Malian with a decent strike record in France. With just three goals in 31 Premier League appearances for West Ham, Big Sam Allardyce is ready to move on from the disappointing transfer. Turkey’s the rumored destination.

AC Milan midfielder Sulley Muntari is only 29 years old. Don’t know about you, but it kinda surprised us he wasn’t older. The former teen star with Udinese is being rumored as on the move to Hull City to join the Tigers. After picking up two striking threats in Nikita Jelavic and Shane Long, Steve Bruce is looking for more of an enforcer type.

The Yohan Cabaye story lingers in the Newcastle press and Magpies supporters are surely hoping the resolution waits for the summer. Newcastle’s dynamic midfielder has been mentioned for an exit for ages and this January’s mostly been PSG as the destination. As the Northeast club may have reached an agreement to ply Remy Cabella from Montpellier in the summer, Cabaye uses the phrase “Champions League” like its going out of style.

Montpellier is now said to want a Hatem Ben Arfa loan move through the end of the season in order to get Cabella immediately. NUFC supporters can hope he leads the Magpies into Europe, fulfilling both sides desires, and that director of football Joe Kinnear isn’t lying when he says, ” “I will not let any player leave Newcastle United in this transfer window.”

Speaking of Newcastle, they’ve entered the fray for Basel star Mohamed Salah according to Sky Sports. In December it seemed the “Egyptian Messi” was all but Liverpool’s, but as time moves on more teams are getting the Salah itch.

Julio Cesar isn’t seeing time for QPR (!!) as Rob Green has played well, and the 34-year-old is pretty much gone from Loftus Road, admits QPR chairman Tony Fernandes. The player casually mentioned Sardinia and Cagliari as options, as the 77-times capped Brazilian wants playing time before his homeland’s World Cup.

Men in Blazers: Jurgen Klopp talks loss of Coutinho and more

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Roger Bennett talks with manager Jurgen Klopp about revolutionizing Liverpool, his Greatest Show on Turf-esque offense, the loss of Philippe Coutinho and how he keeps football in perspective.

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MLS: Higuain extends with Crew, Royer gets new deal with Red Bulls

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Two key midfielders earned new deals on Thursday, as two of the Eastern Conference’s recent successes helped solidify for their attacks for the next few years.

The Columbus Crew extended Designated Player attacker Federico Higuain through the 2019 MLS season.

Higuain has been with the Crew since 2012, when the Argentine joined the club from Colon de Santa Fe in his native country.

Meanwhile, the New York Red Bulls extended Daniel Royer’s contract, as the Austrian winger in the midst of his third season with Jesse Marsch’s group.

Thus far, Royer has tallied 17 goals in all competitions for the Red Bulls, including 15 during the 2017 campaign, where the former Midtjylland player finished second on the team in goals behind Bradley Wright-Phillips.

UEL: Griezmann nabs crucial away goal vs. Arsenal, Marseille cruises

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A game of back-and-forth at the Emirates Stadium set up an enticing second leg in the UEFA Europa League semifinals, while a Ligue 1 side positioned itself well to move into the final.

[ MORE: Prince-Wright’s Premier League picks ]

Arsenal and Atletico Madrid settled for a 1-1 draw in London, as Antoine Griezmann’s late strike leveled the match for the Spanish side.

The Gunners looked on their way to a victory when Alexandre Lacazette‘s goal just beyond the hour mark put Arsene Wenger‘s men in front.

The result sets up a strong showdown for the two giants in a week’s time, although Arsenal will feel it left something on the table after racking up 26 shots (seven on target) on the day, particularly after Sime Vrsaljko was sent off after 10 minutes for the visitors when he picked up a second yellow card.

Meanwhile, Florian Thauvin and Clinton Njie gave Marseille a 2-0 win over Red Bull Leipzig, giving the French side the edge it sought out ahead of the competition finale.

The two clubs will meet again at Red Bull Arena Salzburg for the second leg.


Arsenal 1-1 Atletico Madrid
Marseille 2-0 Red Bull Salzburg

Europa League, LIVE: Arsenal, Marseille host first legs

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Diego Costa brings a solid career record against Arsenal back to London in a bid to ruin Arsene Wenger‘s farewell season at the Emirates Stadium.

[ FOLLOW: Arsenal vs. Atleti ]

The now-Atletico Madrid forward returns to England on Thursday as his La Liga outfit aims to stop Arsenal from reaching next month’s Europa League Final in Lyon.

[ FOLLOW: Marseille vs. Red Bull Salzburg ]

That’s a 3:05 p.m. ET kickoff, the same as Marseille’s date with Red Bull Salzburg in France.

ARSENAL-ATLETICO MADRID LINEUPS

Arsenal: Ospina, Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal, Xhaka, Wilshere, Ramsey, Welbeck, Ozil, Lacazette. Subs: Cech, Maitland-Niles, Holding, Chambers, Kolasinac, Iwobi, Nketiah.

Atleti: Oblak, Lucas, Godin, Gimenez, Vrsaljko, Saul, Thomas, Koke, Correa, Griezmann, Gameiro. Subs: Werner, Savic, Gabi, Vitolo, Olabe, Torres, Costa.