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Report: Tottenham set to raid Manchester United, line up Fellaini, Hernandez deals

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Tottenham Hotspur are reportedly lining up a $46 million bid to bring both Javier Hernandez and Marouane Fellaini to White Hart Lane.

The Red Devils duo have apparently been told they can leave Old Trafford by new manager Louis van Gaal and both are available for immediate transfer. Hernandez started in United’s opening day defeat to Swansea City but was substituted, while Fellaini came on as a late sub after playing a peripheral role during preseason.

[RELATED: Muller rejected Man United]

According to multiple reports in the UK, Spurs’ new boss Mauricio Pochettino is keen to hand both Hernandez and Fellaini a fresh start in North London after the duo endured horror campaigns last season.

Mexican striker Hernandez, known commonly as ‘Chicharito’, started just six PL games last term and Pochettino has been a long-term admirer of his predatory instincts. As for Fellaini, the Belgian international has struggled to shake off the $50 million price tag around his neck after United’s former boss David Moyes brought him in from Everton last summer.

Chicharito, 26, has scored 59 goals in 152 appearances for United but his role as a supersub has since his stature diminish over the last 12 months. Spurs are certainly looking short of goals with misfiring Spaniard Roberto Soldado and veteran Emmanuel Adbayor their only out-and-out strikers, while Argentina attacker Erik Lamela continues his slow start to life at the Lane.

Fellaini is the more intriguing part of the deal here. With a loan move to Serie A side Napoli supposedly lined up for the lanky Belgian international midfielder, United are keen to instead recoup some of the cash they splashed for him last summer. If this deal goes through, in theory they will get almost all of the money back they paid for Fellaini, plus throw in Chicharito as a bonus for Spurs. With the potential for Fellaini to play alongside fellow Belgians Nacer Chadli and Jan Vertonghen at Tottenham, could the bushy haired midfielder return to past glories with a fresh start? Fellaini’s struggles, which included zero goals from central midfield, coupled with United’s awful seventh-placed finish last term and the demise of Moyes as manager, became a symbol of the dark days at Old Trafford. If he moves on, not many tears would be shed by fans of the Red Devils.

Both Fellaini and Hernandez would strengthen Tottenham’s squad and with van Gaal keen to move them on to bring in some new signings of his own, this seems like the ideal situation for both clubs and both players.

Bayern’s Vidal says “ugly” Atletico not deserved UCL finalists

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 27: Juanfran of Atletico Madrid and Arturo Vidal of Bayern Munich argue during the UEFA Champions League semi final first leg match between Club Atletico de Madrid and FC Bayern Muenchen at Vincente Calderon on April 27, 2016 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
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Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal has declared “ugly” Atletico Madrid unworthy finalists in the UEFA Champions League.

Bayern was eliminated in the Champions League semifinal by Atleti on Tuesday, with Diego Simeone’s Spanish side advancing on away goals.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s UCL coverage ]

However, Vidal believed Bayern were the better team in the second leg, saying Atletico played “ugly football” to get through.

Today ugly football – Atletico – played against the best football in the world. The only time they saw the ball was for the goal.

They are going to be dreaming about us right up to the final. They did not have the ball, they took on the best team in the world, they took their chances and got to the final.

The best does not always win in football, like today. They are not deserved finalists.

Bayern Munich controlled more than 70-percent of possession and had 33 shots compared to Atletico’s nine, but those stats mean little as Antoine Griezmann’s away goal was enough to send Atleti to the final.

[ MORE: Former England striker Joe Cole headed to NASL’s Tampa Bay Rowdies ]

Atletico may not play the most attractive football, but after eliminating Barcelona and Bayern Munich in consecutive legs, it’s hard to argue anyone deserves this more than Simeone’s men.

Europa League preview: Liverpool, Shakhtar look to overcome Spanish foes

VILLARREAL, SPAIN - APRIL 28:  Cedric Bakambu of Villarreal is watched by the Liverpool defence during the UEFA Europa League semi final first leg match between Villarreal CF and Liverpool at Estadio El Madrigal on April 28, 2016 in Villarreal, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
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The second leg of the Europa League semifinals kick off tomorrow, with two La Liga sides looking to make it an all-Spanish final.

[ MORE: Premier League Playback ]

Villarreal holds a 1-0 lead over Liverpool, while Sevilla scored two away goals in their 2-2 draw at Shakhtar Donetsk.

Liverpool vs. Villarreal – 3:05 p.m. ET
Villarreal won first leg 1-0

Adrian Lopez’s late winner in the first leg has given Villarreal a slight lead, while the Spanish side did well not to concede an away goal. However, Liverpool have overcome deficits at Anfield before, including their memorable 4-3 victory over Borussia Dortmund in the quarterfinals. Emre Can is back fit for the Reds, as manager Jurgen Klopp will hope his fellow German can help the team to a cup final in his first year in charge.

[ RELATED: Liverpool preparing for another big Thursday night at Anfield ]

Sevilla vs. Shakhtar Donetsk – 3:05 p.m. ET
First leg ended 2-2 draw 

Sevilla are looking to become the first team to win three consecutive Europa League titles as the two-time defending champions face off against Shakhtar Donetsk. Sevilla are in the driver’s seat after scoring two away goals in Ukraine, and will feel confident of advancing to the final with a great home record at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium.

Men in Blazers podcast: Celebrating Leicester’s title with Arlo White

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In the latest Men in Blazers podcast, Rog and Davo celebrate Leicester City’s improbable Premier League title with Leicester’s own Arlo White.

All of the MiB content — pods, videos and stories can be seen here, but to really stay in touch, follow, subscribe, click here:

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European police say Russian mafia infiltrating soccer clubs

LISBON, PORTUGAL - NOVEMBER 04:  Sporting Lisbon fans celebrate after their team score a goal during the Portuguese Liga match between Sporting Lisbon and Uniao Leiria at the Alvalade XXI Stadium on November 4, 2005 in Lisbon, Portugal.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
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LISBON, Portugal (AP) Portuguese and European police say they have broken up a cell of an important Russian mafia group that allegedly laundered money through European football clubs.

Europol, the European Union’s law enforcement agency, said in a statement Wednesday the group identified EU football clubs in financial distress and infiltrated them with benefactors who brought much-needed cash.

[ MORE: Man City bounced from UCL ]

Once they were in control, the mobsters allegedly laundered millions of euros (dollars) through player transfers, TV rights deals and betting.

Portuguese and European police on Tuesday raided third-division Portuguese club Uniao de Leiria and arrested three key members of the Russian gang. Three other Portuguese clubs’ premises were searched.

Europol said the operation helped identify serious crimes in Austria, Germany, and the United Kingdom, though it gave no details.