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Transfer Rumor Roundup: Keane to Everton; Courtois to Real Madrid

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Michael Keane is closing in on a move to Everton, say Sky Sports.

[ MORE: Sanchez to Man City? ]

Per the report Everton and Keane’s current club Burnley are in “advanced talks” about a move for the England international.

Center back Keane, 24, shone for Burnley last season and broke into the England national team but the Manchester United product is said to have told the Clarets he wants to move on this summer.

Keane’s former club were said to be interested but United instead went for Sweden international Victor Lindelof in central defense, while Liverpool’s desire to sign Keane appears to have dropped but Everton had always made Keane their top defensive target.

Everton have just three senior center back options right now, with veterans Phil Jagielka and Ashley Williams, while Argentina international Ramiro Funes Mori is out with a long-term injury. Matthew Pennington and Mason Holgate are Ronald Koeman‘s other options in central defense, although Holgate is mostly used as a right back or right-sided defended in a three-man defense.

The reported fee for Keane, who has entered the final year of his Burnley contract, is $32.4 million and that would mean the Toffees have splashed some considerable cash with Davy Klaassen and Jordan Pickford already arriving for a combined total of $63.1 million.

Koeman is making it clear that he wants to strengthen the spine of his team with adding Pickford in goal and Klaassen to midfield, and Keane would be a fine addition to the Goodison Park club. He is strong in the air and in the tackle but equally as adept on the ball and he is arguably a more powerful version of John Stones.

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois continues to be linked with a summer move to Real Madrid, and his agent certainly isn’t helping to stop speculation.

Speaking to Belgian media, Courtois’s agent, Christophe Henrotay, admitted that Real Madrid often ask about the 25-year-old when he meets with them.

Here’s what he had to say to Belgium’s Sport magazine about the meetings with Real Madrid.

“Obviously the biggest clubs are interested in Thibaut, and that includes the reigning European champions,” Henrotay said. “He is a goalkeeper who wins you games, wins you trophies. I meet regularly with Real Madrid’s directors and Thibaut’s situation is evaluated. My role is to keep him informed of the situation.”

Should Chelsea’s fans be a little concerned? Taking into account Courtois’ affinity for the city of Madrid after his superb loan spell with Atletico Madrid in 2011-14, it’s no secret that he would fancy a return to Madrid.

It won’t surprise you that Courtois is currently locked in contract talks with Chelsea about extending his stay at Stamford Bridge and substantially increasingly his $127,000 per week salary. It’s highly-likely Courtois will stay at Chelsea, but with Keylor Navas’ shaky displays in goal for Real over the past few seasons, perhaps Zinedine Zidane and Co. will be intrigued by these public comments.

If that does happen then Chelsea are certainly struggling in goal with Asmir Begovic sold to Bournemouth in the offseason, although Willy Caballero is set to join on a free transfer in the coming days. Still, Antonio Conte would need a new marquee goalkeeper.

Courtois impressed for much of last season, bouncing back well after injury and poor form marred his 2015-16 campaign following a stellar first season in the PL in 2014-15 as he led Chelsea to title glory.

La Liga & Serie A: Bale leads Real to seven-goal outburst and more

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A roundup of Sunday’s action in Spain and Italy’s top flights…

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s La Liga coverage ]

Real Madrid 7-1 Deportivo La Coruna

Now, this is more like it from the defending European champions. Zinedine Zidane’s side went behind on Sunday when Adrian put the visitors in front, however, Real Madrid woke up and scored seven unanswered goals at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Gareth Bale was the star on the day with a brilliant curler that kicked off the first of his two goals (below). After Cristiano Ronaldo appeared to go down inside the penalty area, Bale carried on and put the ball onto his left foot before sliding his shot in off the inside of the far post.

Meanwhile, Ronaldo picked up a brace of his own on the day, both of which came off of headers for the Portuguese international. The veteran goalscorer also got bloodied on the day, but that didn’t stop him from adding to his impressive goal total.

Real Betis 0-5 Barcelona

A slow start to the match was aided by a Barcelona team that came out for blood in the second stanza. Ivan Rakitic and braces from Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi paced the road side in the second half, keeping their unbeaten La Liga record in tacked.

Although Rakitic was the first to find his name on the scoresheet, it was his assist to Suarez that later on that proved to be a thing of excellence from both parties.

The first half was mildly uneventful for the Blaugrana, however, the Catalonians suffered another injury blow as Thomas Vermaelen left the match after pulling up in the first half with what appeared to be a hamstring pull.

Elsewhere in La Liga

Alaves 2-2 Leganes
Real Sociedad 1-2 Celta Vigo

Lazio 5-1 Chievo Verona

Lazio moved into third place in Serie A after a convincing victory at the Stadio Olimpico. Sergej Milinkovic-Savic’s double for the hosts helped propel them to the win, after Luis Alberto kicked off the scoring in the 23rd minute.

Chievo found a brief response two minutes later, but from there it was all Lazio as they closed to within 11 points of league leaders Napoli.

Cagliari 1-2 AC Milan

Franck Kessié scored twice in six minutes to pull Milan back into the match on the day, and that was exactly what they needed to secure three points at the Sardegna Arena. AC Milan sits seventh in Italy’s top flight through 21 matches, 23 points behind Napoli.

Elsewhere in Serie A

Inter Milan 1-1 Roma
Udinese 1-1 SPAL
Sassuolo 1-1 Torino
Sampdoria 3-1 Fiorentina
Bologna 3-0 Benevento
Hellas Verona 0-3 Crotone
Atalanta 0-1 Napoli

Video: Kurzawa silences Lyon with spectacular volley

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Lyon went ahead inside the opening two minutes, but then Layvin Kurzawa had his say for the visitors on the stroke of halftime.

[ MORE: Fekir’s free kick stuns PSG in opening two minutes]

Dani Alves set up the defender for one of the best volleys you’ll see in first-half stoppage time on Sunday to level the match at 1-1.

Watch below as PSG ties things up with just seconds remaining before the halftime whistle.

Video: Fekir’s brilliant free kick has Lyon leading PSG

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Paris-Saint Germain has established itself as one of Europe’s best sides, but their opponent on Sunday isn’t playing scared against Neymar and Co.

[ MORE: Spurs, Saints play to 1-1 draw at St. Mary’s ]

Lyon has taken a 1-0 lead inside the opening two minutes against the Parisians after a stunning free kick by Nabil Fekir caught PSG keeper Alphonse Aréola off his line.

The hosts could move all the way up to second place today with a victory over PSG, who holds the league lead in Ligue 1 with a nine-point advantage.

The 24-year-old Fekir has been a revelation for Lyon in his fifth season with the club, scoring his 19th goal in all competitions on Sunday.

That total has already surpassed his career-high from the 2014/15 season, when he eclipsed 15 goals.

USMNT midfielder Weston McKennie injured in Schalke draw

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Look away, U.S. Men’s National Team fans.

American and Schalke midfielder Weston McKennie was forced out of Sunday’s 1-1 Bundesliga draw against Hanover 96 after the 19-year-old collided with Felix Kraus.

McKennie, who entered the match in the 62nd minute for Leon Goretzka, managed to stay on the field for nearly 20 minutes before being substituted out.

To this point there has been no indication that the young USMNT player’s injury is serious.

More to follow…