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Transfer rumor roundup: Matic to Manchester United; Barkley, Everton news

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Tottenham Hotspur’s depth means it can wait out Everton as the Toffees demand plenty of money for young star Ross Barkley.

The 23-year-old England international won’t sign a new deal with Everton, and Ronald Koeman has been clear that he’s ready to cash in on the wantaway midfielder.

[ MORE: Latest on Ronaldo ]

Spurs are interested according to Sky Sports, but rolling their eyes at a requested fee of close to $64 million. So the North Londoners will wait, a move that makes sense given Barkley’s up-and-down form.

The Liverpool Echo says that Koeman is close to making it official with Sandro Ramirez, as the ex-Barcelona prospect will join Jordan Pickford and Davy Klaassen as new Toffees in a $7 million deal.

The BBC says Koeman will quickly move onto two more transfers, aiming to woo Gylfi Sigurdsson from Swansea City and center back Michael Keane from Burnley.


The Manchester Evening News says Manchester United is close to reuniting Jose Mourinho with defensive midfielder Nemanja Matic.

The tough-minded Serbian turns 29 in August, and would give Mourinho flexibility with Paul Pogba and Ander Herrera. United also has Michael Carrick as a deep-lying option.

Matic has 121 Premier League appearances and two titles since returning to Chelsea in January 2014.


 

Is Eric Dier worth Tottenham’s $64 million asking price?

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There’s no question that Tottenham has become one of Europe’s most talented sides when considering the club’s youth and budding stardom throughout the squad.

[ MORE: The ramifications of a Ronaldo move away from Real Madrid ]

One player in particular though is gaining significant interest from another top Premier League side though, and that’s midfielder Eric Dier.

The 23-year-old just finished his third year with Spurs since joining last season’s second-place finishers from Portuguese side Sporting Lisbon, and now Manchester United has come calling for the defensive midfielder’s services as Michael Carrick nears the end of his illustrious career.

The Telegraph is reporting that Spurs is holding out for nearly $64 million in order to allow Dier to leave the club, and Jose Mourinho and the Red Devils appear content on adding the youngster.

With Dier being a holding midfielder though, would United or another club be crazy to spend that sort of money?

Chelsea acquired Leicester’s N'Golo Kante a season ago for nearly $27 million less than Dier’s reported fee, and the Frenchman is now a two-time Premier League Player of the Year.

It’s not to say that Dier or other holding midfielders aren’t valuable because Kante has shown what a tremendous signing at the position he has been, however, given the lack of goalscoring prowess a team typically gets from it it’s difficult to see a team warranting that sort of spending.

With United spending over $114 million on Paul Pogba last summer the club will be surely looking for somebody to step in and fill a holding midfield role properly in order to allow the Frenchman to sit higher on the field and potentially create and score more goals.

Dier has proven to be more than valuable because of his versatility in terms of where Spurs have been able to play him under Mauricio Pochettino. The Englishman has predominantly deployed as a defensive mid throughout his career but also pushed up the field and been sent to the defensive back four when Tottenham has needed him to fill that role.

There’s no doubting that Dier could be a useful asset for Mourinho and Co. as the club prepares for a push at top-four next season and begins a UEFA Champions League campaign, but the price tag for Dier remains a bit steep.

Transfer Rumor Roundup: Lindelof to Man Utd and more

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With the international season in full swing, clubs are hoping to complete deals that will see them compete at a higher level once next season starts.

Manchester United looks to be quick off the blocks, with a deal for Benfica defender Victor Lindelof apparently complete. Multiple outlets are reporting that the deal is fully done, and that it will become official on Wednesday after his international duty with Sweden is complete and he can fly to Manchester to perform the medical.

According to the reports, the purchase will cost Manchester United around $45 million. Lindelof, a 22-year-old center-back with 12 international caps to his name, was a player that Jose Mourinho was reportedly in for last winter, but instead the United boss pulled his offer with the squad already full.


With Liverpool still shaking off the embarrassment of the Virgil Van Dijk disaster, there are rumors that the Reds have begun to turn the gears on a play for Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic. The 22-year-old Serbian has 11 international caps and was a regular for Lazio in midfield last season as the club finished 5th in Serie A.

The process has just begun, with Liverpool enquiring about Milinkovic-Savic’s availability, but according to the player’s agent, there are “many big clubs talking about him” (of course he would say that). The Serbian’s agent did say Juventus was not one of those suitors, and that the player is happy at Lazio, having just signed a new contract in April that lasts through the summer of 2022.

Given his brand new contract and likely interest elsewhere, it will be costly for Liverpool to bring the Serbian midfielder to Anfield. It also might behoove Liverpool to let the player continue to develop, as he shows top ability both with the ball at his feet and in the air, but still has some growing to do, as evident by his 73% passing accuracy last season over 34 Serie A appearances.


Reports in Russia have suggested that Arsenal is close to signing 21-year-old midfielder Aleksandr Golovin from CSKA Moscow. The youngster is highly experienced for his age, with 12 international caps under his belt plus two full Russian league seasons which saw CSKA finish top of the table in 2016 followed by a second-place finish this past year.

According to the report, Golovin would cost Arsenal just $13 million.

The young Russian is a superb tackler and solid passer out in front of the back line, and has a far better disciplinary record than the incumbent Arsenal midfielders. While the hope is that Golovin would eventually challenge both Francis Coquelin and Granit Xhaka for the holding midfield spot, initially CSKA is reportedly interested in taking Golovin back on loan for a season should the deal go through. The report also mentions Hull City as a possible loan destination should Arsenal decide to keep him in England.


Spurs midfielder Dele Alli has spoken about his future, in the hopes of easing Tottenham fans who may have fears of him leaving. While the young England international would not rule out any future move – even something this summer – he wanted to make sure Spurs fans knew where his head was at.

“I think people get too worried about where they are going to eventually end up,” Alli told The Guardian. “They lose focus on the journey, and are not enjoying it.”

There are endless rumors that Real Madrid are interested in the 21-year-old star, but nothing has come of that yet.

“I’m signed to Tottenham and I’m enjoying it. Who knows where I am going to end up, whether I stay at Tottenham for the rest of my career or if I do happen to go somewhere else. I’m sure if it happens, if I do go somewhere else, it will be at a time when I think that’s what’s needed. But I am just looking forward to enjoying the journey.”

Report: Man City close to adding Bertrand AND Walker

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Manchester City needs help at fullback, and Sky Sports says the Sky Blues are set to pick up two of the Premier League’s best.

In moves that can happen “within a fortnight”, Shakespeare Pep Guardiola could have Southampton’s Ryan Bertrand and Tottenham’s Kyle Walker at the Etihad Stadium.

[ MORE: Lukaku knows his next stop ]

Walker missed some playing time late in the season as Mauricio Pochettino opted for expert crosser Kieran Trippier, while Bertrand’s availability hinges on Saints’ interest in selling anyone of merit. Chairman Ralph Krueger has said they won’t be big sellers, and is already dealing with the potential departure of star center back Virgil van Dijk.

The same report says that Man City’s previously reported addition of Benjamin Mendy is no longer close, so take it for what it’s worth!

Ilkay Gundogan was back training this morning, and the idea of having Walker and Bertrand racing up the wings with healthy Gundogan and Gabiel Jesus (let alone Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva, Sergio Aguero, and on, and on) has to invigorate the imaginations of Man City supporters.

Lukaku knows his next club… and wants to win the Premier League

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Romelu Lukaku says he’s talking with his next club, and hinted that it’s in England.

Everton’s star striker also said he wants to improve and play in the Champions League, narrowing his list of potential destinations to Manchester United, Liverpool, Man City, Tottenham Hotspur, and Chelsea.

[ MORE: JPW talks with Pulisic ]

Logic says the move will neither be to Merseyside rivals Liverpool nor striker-content Manchester City, leaving old home Chelsea, Spurs, and Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United.

Here’s what Lukaku said Monday:

“I know what’s happening, but I can’t tell you anything more,” he added to journalists after Belgium beat the Czech Republic in a friendly in Brussels.

“What I would like most is to play in the Champions League and try to win the Premier League once. Or better – a few times.”

The bettors have Lukaku even money to join Chelsea, and slightly worse odds to join United. It’s usually a poor idea to go against the bookies, but Lukaku would slide in neatly in the Zlatan Ibrahimovic role at Old Trafford. We’ll look there first.