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Dortmund warn Liverpool over deal for USMNT star Pulisic

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In a nutshell: Borussia Dortmund isn’t pleased with Liverpool.

Dortmund’s director of sport, Michael Zorc, has issued a massive “hands off” warning to Liverpool regarding U.S. national team starlet Christian Pulisic.

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The 18-year-old from Hershey, PA has burst onto the scene for Dortmund and the USMNT over the past 12 months and although he has just 18 months left on his contract with the Bundesliga giants, reports are persisting that Liverpool wants to sign him.

Given the fact that current Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp helped sign Pulisic from the U.S. as a youth team player the link here is obvious but in an interview with Bild, Zorc made his feelings on the subject crystal clear.

“We have made it quite clear that we are not going to sell Christian and that we are planning with him,” Zoruc said. “Liverpool can save the effort of making an offer.”

Well, there you have it.

Of course, there are two sides to contract negotiations and if Pulisic doesn’t want to extend his stay at Dortmund then he can stall on a contract offer for the next 12 months and then start talking to Liverpool (or any other club outside of Germany for that matter) about a free transfer in the summer of 2018.

It is highly likely the situation would be resolved by then, though, and with Pulisic making 16 appearances for Dortmund this season in which he has two goals and five assists, the teenager looks settled at the Westfalenstadion.

However, he has previously announced his love for the English game after spending a stint living in England as a youngster and Pulisic should probably keep his cards close to his chest about his future in the coming months. Klopp did the same when ProSoccerTalk asked him about reported interest in Pulisic just before the end of the summer transfer window.

Yet, why would Pulisic leave Dortmund right now? The German club has developed and nurtured him into one of the hottest young prospects in the world and he plays in the UEFA Champions League, something Liverpool can’t offer him right now, in a team full of young attacking talent.

Expect to hear plenty more about Pulisic’s future in the near future as Liverpool, and plenty of other top European clubs, test Dortmund’s resolve to keep hold of their talented young playmaker.

Transfer Rumor Roundup: Chelsea still pursuing Roma duo, and more

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Chelsea is looking to make a big transfer splash as it searches for potential replacements for Michy Batshuayi and David Luiz.

According to multiple reports, Chelsea is attempting a double signing from AS Roma, forward Edin Dzeko and midfielder Emerson Palmieri. The Brazilian left-back is rated by Roma at $30.5 million but he could join Chelsea on loan. However the interest in Dzeko is much newer, and it’s unclear whether Roma would allow Dzeko to leave, especially in the middle of the season.

[READ: MLS SuperDraft 2018 Live Tracker]

With Roma preparing to face Inter Milan this weekend, talks between the two clubs have been put on hold until next week.

Dzeko’s agent confirmed that Conte is interested in the Bosnia and Herzegovina international but stated Dzeko’s desire is to remain at Roma.

After failing to beat out Sergio Aguero in the starting lineup for Manchester City, it would be interesting to see Dzeko give the Premier League another go, although he’d likely play second-fiddle again, this time to Alvaro Morata.

Here are some more transfer rumors from around Europe and the Premier League:

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MLS SuperDraft 2018 Live Tracker

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For a few dozen players, hearing their name called up to the big stage will validate all the hard work and sacrifices they’ve made since they were children.

Starting at 11:00 a.m. when Los Angeles FC is on the clock at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, the 2018 MLS SuperDraft will be underway. Many of the top college prospects will soon find out whether they’ll be headed to the Pacific Northwest, New England, the Southeast, Southern California or anywhere in between.

[MORE: 2018 MLS Mock Draft]

This year’s draft class is loaded with attacking talent, from Generation Adidas trio Ema Twumasi (Wake Forest), Mason Toye (Indiana) and Francis Atuahene (Michigan) to Twumasi’s college teammate Jon Bakero.

But potential No. 1 overall pick is a three-time national champion, Thomas Hilliard-Arce, who could become the anchor of a backline for a decade.

Follow along below as we update the picks live as we hear them:

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Bayern signs Germany midfielder Goretzka from rival Schalke

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MUNICH (AP) Bayern Munich signed Germany midfielder Leon Goretzka on Friday on a free transfer from Bundesliga rival Schalke effective from next season.

Bayern said the 22-year-old Goretzka signed a four-year deal from July 1 through June 2022.

Schalke, which Goretzka joined in 2013 from hometown club Bochum, said the player informed the club this week of his wish to join Bayern when his contract expired.

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“We think we did everything in the last months to convince Leon to stay with us,” Schalke sporting director Christian Heidel said. “In the end, it wasn’t enough.”

Schalke had long been engaged in trying to get Goretzka to extend his contract, but was aware of reported interest from Bayern, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus and Liverpool.

“We’re very happy that Leon Goretzka, a German international with big potential, has decided in favor of Bayern despite big-name international competitors. This way it’s ensured that Leon Goretzka remains in the Bundesliga,” Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said.

Goretzka scored 19 goals and set up 13 more in 130 appearances for Schalke.

The club had previously expressed its displeasure with Bayern making public statements about its player after Goretzka was praised by sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic and coach Jupp Heynckes.

Heidel said “we don’t need to hear every day from the Munich people how good our player is.”

Goretzka has six goals in 12 games for Germany.

Pele hospitalized overnight in Brazil

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The most famous soccer player in the world had a scare last night as he was hospitalized in Brazil for “severe exhaustion.”

Pele, 77, was set to travel to London this weekend to be honored by the Football Writers Association, though it looks like that trip has now been postponed.

In the early hours of Thursday morning, Pele collapsed and was taken to a hospital in Brazil where he has undergone a series of tests which appear to point to severe exhaustion,” a FWA statement said. “He remains on fluids while doctors monitor his recovery.

“Thankfully, there is no suggestion of anything more serious than exhaustion.”

Here’s to hoping Pele makes a full recovery.

[MORE: USMNT centerback heads to Championship club]