Newcastle sells Debuchy to Arsenal, picks up World Cup semifinal back

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Two very poorly-kept secrets are out in the open, as Newcastle United has announced both the sale of French defender Mathieu Debuchy to Arsenal and the purchase of his replacement from Feyenoord.

Daryl Janmaat comes to the St. James Park fresh off a World Cup semifinal run with the Netherlands, where he played five of the side’s seven games. Janmaat picked up assists against Chile and Brazil, and turns 25 on July 22.

The sale of Debuchy, who turns 29 this month, will yield a profit for the Magpies. He cost Newcastle about $9.4 million two years ago, and Arsenal will reportedly pay slightly over $17 million for his services.

And Debuchy may even be an upgrade over Bacary Sagna, who left Arsenal for Manchester City earlier this offseason. Confident in the tackle and more-than-willing to get forward, Debuchy was a pivotal part of Newcastle’s success.

With Janmaat reportedly costing in the neighborhood of $8.5 million, it’s a pretty good bit of business for the Northeast club as well. Newcastle has already brought in Ajax mid Siem de Jong to go with French striker Emmanuel Riviere and playmaker Remy Cabella this offseason. Spanish forward Ayoze Perez was the first of what is now five signings for Pardew as he aims to make amends for a historically-poor finish to the 2013/14 season.

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Here’s what Newcastle boss Alan Pardew says about Janmaat:

 “We are delighted to bring Daryl to the Club. He is the perfect example of a modern full-back; someone who is good defensively but offers a real threat going forward as well.

“Daryl had an excellent World Cup and we are looking forward to him continuing that form for Newcastle.”

It’s fair to say NUFC owner Mike Ashley is surprising many fans after not spending for permanent transfers for close to a year. The French-flavored side now has a further splash of Dutch, and — if they can manager to hold onto Tim Krul and Moussa Sissoko — things are looking promising up North.

Raiola: Zlatan to “100 percent” stay in Europe for two seasons

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic may be 35 and coming off major knee surgery, but that isn’t stopping suitors from lining up across Europe.

Ibrahimovic’s agent, Mino Raiola, says that MLS is not an option for the Swede over the next two seasons. From Sky Sports:

“Many clubs have asked for Zlatan. He can play two more years and will stay in Europe, 100 per cent.”

It would make sense for Ibrahimovic to stay around Manchester United, where he is admired by Jose Mourinho and coming off a season that showed he’s still capable of contributing at a high level.

But he remains beloved in Italy, and would be effective for most clubs in the Top 5 leagues should he return at even 75 percent of the Zlatan we’ve seen regularly.

Report: Manchester United, Inter Milan keen on Perisic deal

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Manchester United wants Ivan Perisic, and both the player and his current club are all about it.

Perisic, 28, is ready to leave Inter Milan, and the Serie A mainstays are happy to accept $46 million for his services according to Sky Sports.

[ MORE: No China for Costa ]

Primarily a left winger, Perisic moved to Inter from Wolfsburg at the start of the 2015-16 season. He scored 10 goals and added nine assists in Serie A play this season, and has kept up his production pace since moving from the Bundesliga to Italy.

United needs stars and depth for its Champions League campaign, and Perisic would buttress an attack with Marcus Rashford, Henrikh Mkhitaryan amongst others. He was a difference maker for Croatia at EURO 2016, and can do the same at Old Trafford.

Celtic secures trophy treble, ends Scottish season unbeaten

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GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) Celtic completed a trophy treble in Scottish soccer and finished the domestic season undefeated after beating Aberdeen 2-1 in the Scottish Cup final thanks to an injury-time goal on Saturday.

Midfielder Tom Rogic scored from an acute angle in the second minute of stoppage time at Hampden Park to ensure Celtic added the cup to the Scottish Premiership and the Scottish League Cup.

[ MORE: No China for Costa ]

Brendan Rodgers became the third manager, after Jock Stein (1967, 1969) and Martin O’Neill (2001), to lead Celtic to a treble of domestic titles.

Celtic hasn’t lost any of its 47 games across in the league and both cups, and is the first team to go through the whole of a Scottish domestic season unbeaten.

No China for Costa: It’ll be Chelsea or Atletico Madrid

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Blues striker Diego Costa offered some insight into his future following Chelsea’s FA Cup Final loss to Arsenal on Saturday.

The combustible striker was subject to a head-turning bid from the Chinese Super League this winter, but is only looking at two European locations for his future.

Those are his current club, Chelsea, as well as former home at Atletico Madrid.

[ JPW: Poignant FA Cup Final reflects English mood ]

The 28-year-old Costa has kept his scoring pace level since arriving in the Premier League. He scored 64 goals in 134 matches for Atleti, and has notched 58 goals for Chelsea in 120 appearances.

Costa reportedly said, “No, no, no” when asked about China, as well as the following: