The Dele Alli hype train is chugging along full-steam ahead following seven goals in four games from the 20-year-old Tottenham Hotspur star. There’s not a club in the world that wouldn’t take England’s newest “great hope,” including Real Madrid, and now, according to a report from the Mirror, Barcelona. Here’s a free idea for you, FIFA/UEFA: Madrid and Barca face off in El Clasico on April 23 — winner earns the right to pay Tottenham $80 million to sign Alli.
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Also from the Mirror, Ronald Koeman reportedly wants to bring Jack Wilshere to Everton in the summer, which seems something much more likely to actually happen than the above Clasico proposition. Given that Wilshere has just 18 months remaining on his current Arsenal contract, he could probably be acquired for a rather unimpressive transfer fee. Of course, Arsene Wenger came out this week to say he made a mistake by letting Wilshere go on loan to Bournemouth this season, so he might just have a future at Emirates Stadium after all.
[ MORE: Saturday’s transfer rumor roundup | Friday | Thursday ]
Patrice Evra could be finished at Juventus, with a return to Manchester United a surprise possibility, according to Gazzetta dello Sport. The 35-year-old was left out of Juve’s squad on Sunday, fueling speculation he could be transferred this month. Matteo Darmian is seen as a potential replacement for Evra, should he leave, according to Goal.com. Valencia are also reportedly interested in acquiring Evra. Juve are also lining up Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic and Manchester City’s Gael Clichy, both of whom will be free agents in the summer, according to Calcio Mercato.
[ MORE: FIFA set to approve expanded 2026 World Cup on Tuesday ]
Torino have rejected a $69-million bid from Arsenal for striker Andrea Belotti, according to the club’s sporting director Gianluca Petrachi. The 23-year-old has scored 13 goals in 16 Serie A games this season, and recently signed a new contract which features a $105-million release clause.
All it took was one goal to bring Belgium to life.
Following a frustrating first 45 minutes, in which Belgium put a pair of shots into the side netting and forced saves from Panama goalkeeper Jaime Penedo, Dries Mertens 47th minute goal opened the floodgates, as Belgium went on to defeat Panama, 3-0, Monday afternoon in Sochi.
[ MORE: Latest 2018 World Cup news ]
But Panama never made it easy for the Belgians. From the opening whistle the CONCACAF nation showed its incredible spirit, chasing down Belgium all across the field and making life incredibly difficult for Belgium attackers Romelu Lukaku, Mertens and Eden Hazard. Hazard was hacked down all over the field, and while he did earn fouls and a few yellow cards were issued to Panamanian players, it was enough to get in Hazard’s head.
Two minutes into the second half, everything changed. A wonderstrike from Mertens opened the game, and forced Panama to attack and try and tie the match, which gave Hazard, de Bruyne and Lukaku more space to operate.
In the heat and humidity of the Sochi summer, Panama’s veteran defense began to tire, allowing de Bruyne the space to deliver a terrific assist to Lukaku in the box, putting Belgium up 2-0 in the 69th minute.
Six minutes later, Lukaku was put through on the break, chipping over Penedo to confirm the victory.
With the win, Belgium moves to the top of Group G. Up next for Belgium is Tunisia on Saturday, while Panama takes on England on Sunday.
It took a little bit of patience, but Romelu Lukaku finally got on the scoresheet at the 2018 World Cup, thanks to a delicious assist from crosstown club rival Kevin De Bruyne.
The Manchester City playmaker delivered a spectacular outside-of-the-boot cross into the box, where Lukaku’s head met it and guided it towards the far post for Belgium’s second goal of the day.
[ MORE: Latest 2018 World Cup news ]
Arsenal looks like it will have a new man between the pipes for next season.
According to a report from German publication SportBild, Bayer Leverkusen goalkeeper Bernd Leno will be introduced as an Arsenal player on Tuesday, after a reported $23-29 million transfer fee. The 26-year-old was on Germany’s 35-man pre-World Cup squad, but was one of the last cuts as Joachim Low went with Manuel Neuer, Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Kevin Trapp in Russia.
Leno became the full-time starter for Leverkusen as a 20-year-old, and has held the position of the No. 1 for the last six seasons, earning plenty of Bundesliga and UEFA Champions League experience along the way.
It’s unclear what will happen to current Arsenal No. 1 Petr Cech. The 36-year-old Premier League legend experienced one of his worst seasons in net for Arsenal and he could begin the season as a backup, unless he moves to a new club. He reportedly has a contract through 2019.
Here’s some more transfer rumors from around the Premier League and Europe.
After a frustrating 45 minutes, it took only two minutes for Belgium to finally get on the board, even if it was a goal sprinkled with magic dust.
Off a partially cleared ball on the right side of the box, Belgium attacker Dries Mertens whalloped a shot that arced over Panama (and former LA Galaxy) goalkeeper Jaime Penedo, giving Belgium a 1-0 lead.
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