Ajax’s Daley Blind admits interest in Manchester United switch

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Manchester United’s pursuit of Ajax defender Daley Blind finally seems to be bearing some fruit as the Dutch defender has left the door wide open for a move to Old Trafford.

Blind, 24, played for new United boss Louis van Gaal at the 2014 World Cup and operated in both a left wing-back role and as a holding midfielder as his versatility helped the Netherlands advance to the semifinals.

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The Ajax academy product, whose father Danny is an Ajax legend, a former Dutch international and served as one of van Gaal’s assistant with the national team this summer, seems to have a big decision coming his was as Ajax boss Ronald De Boer admitted it would be hard for the club to stand in his way if United, or another big club, come calling.

Speaking to reporters about a possible move to United, Blind had the following to say according to the Associated Press.

“I am happy here in Amsterdam. But if there comes another club I will have to think about it and then we will see. I will think about my options. For now I will focus on Ajax and we will see what happens next week.”

With Ajax hoping Blind hangs around for at least another season to continue his development, it is hard to see the Dutchman sticking around for much longer. Especially if LVG and United come calling.

The chance to be van Gaal’s first real signing (Luke Shaw and Ander Herrera were both lined up prior to his arrival) and help usher in a new era at United, where the only way is up, must be hugely appealing to a player like Blind. His meteoric rise would be complete if a big money move to the Red Devils came off, although other European giants such as Barcelona continue to sniff around him.

As the transfer deadline draws closer and defensive additions continue to allude United, you may see van Gaal make Ajax an offer they simply can’t refuse. If that’s the case, Blind is unlikely to refuse the move either.

In his own words he’s already issued what can be deemed as a subtle ‘come and get me plea.’ Now it’s over to you, Manchester United.

Soccer world reacts to the Manchester attacks

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NBC News is reporting that at least 19 people have been killed and another 50 are injured following a possible suicide bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.

Multiple senior U.S. intelligence officials who are monitoring British authorities told NBC News that preliminary reports indicate that a single explosion took place outside the arena on the southwest side opposite the train station. The explosion occurred as the concert ended, catching people as they exited.

Soccer personalities around the world are reacting to the horrible event.

Juventus purchases Cuadrado from Chelsea

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If you didn’t realize Juan Cuadrado still belonged to Chelsea, you’re forgiven.

The Colombian attacker will complete his second season at Juventus after the UEFA Champions League Final against Real Madrid, and won’t be headed back to Chelsea afterwards.

Juve has purchased Cuadrado, and the fee is $22 million, and Juve will pay it over three seasons. Cuadrado, 28, is now signed through 2020 with The Old Lady.

Cuadrado first went on loan to Juve in Aug. 2015, and has eight goals and 18 assists in 83 career appearances with the club.

Chelsea bought Cuadrado from Fiorentina for around $32 million in the January 2015 transfer window, but made just 14 appearances with the club.

Report: Jermain Defoe meeting with Bournemouth

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Sky Sports is reporting that Jermain Defoe may head back to the south of England following Sunderland’s relegation.

Defoe, 34, spent two seasons with Portsmouth between 2008-09, scoring 15 goals in 31 appearances.

[ MORE: ‘The Moment’ of each PL club’s season ]

The 56-times capped England striker had a clause in his Sunderland contract allowing him to leave the Stadium of Light were the Black Cats to be relegated, as they were this season. He’d have little interest in dropping into the Championship given his desire to stay a part of the England squad ahead of the 2018 World Cup.

Bournemouth’s strike corps includes Joshua King, who scored the most goals of any player not on a Top Seven side this season. King’s 16 goals were one more than Defoe’s 15, though the latter scored just one goal following a brace against Crystal Palace on Feb. 4.

Chelsea’s Conte wins pair of top managerial honors

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Antonio Conte took league and national honors from the League Managers Association on Monday night.

The Chelsea boss was named Premier League Manager of the Year and Manager of the Year after leading the Blues to the PL title and an FA Cup Final in his first year on the job.

Brighton and Hove Albion boss Chris Hughton nabbed another Championship boss of the year award after leading the Gulls to the Premier League. He also won the honor with Newcastle United in 2010.

The League One winner is Chris Wilder of Sheffield United. Wilder won the honor with Northampton Town last season.

In League Two, Paul Cook of Portsmouth was named the winner.