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Transfer Rumor Roundup: Sanchez to Inter; Lemar to Arsenal

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Alexis Sanchez is wanted as the “poster boy” of Inter Milan, according to the Gazetta Dello Sport in Italy.

[ MORE: Lukaku, Pogba train in LA ]

Sanchez, 28, still hasn’t signed a new deal with the Gunners and the Chilean international has just 12 months on his current contract at the Emirates Stadium after scoring 30 goals and adding 13 assists in all competitions last season.

With Inter bankrolled by a new Chinese billionaires Suning, they are pushing to sign some of the top talent on the planet and want to make Sanchez their main man.

Manchester City are said to be the frontrunners for Sanchez’s signature with both Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain said to be shirking at paying Sanchez over $515,000 a week, the same amount he has reportedly requested from Arsenal.

Inter struggled to a seventh-place finish last season in Serie A but under new manager Luciano Spalletti they have big plans to challenge Juventus, AS Roma, Napoli and big-spending city rivals AC Milan for the league title.

Sanchez has played in Italy before as he began his European career at Udinese in 2006 before switching to Barcelona in 2011. Arsenal would much rather the Chilean superstar moved abroad than signed for a PL rival in Man City, so that could well be in Inter’s favor.

Does Sanchez want to go back to Italy though?


Arsene Wenger could be set to make a second big signing from Ligue 1 in a matter of a few days with AS Monaco’s Thomas Lemar still a top target for Arsenal.

After signing Alexandre Lacazette for a club-record fee of $68 million, a report from France outlet L’Equipe says Arsenal have offered $51.5 million for Lemar after Monaco turned down their initial bid. Multiple reports suggest Lemar has already agreed personal terms with Arsenal but the two teams still need to agree a fee.

Lemar, 21, excelled against Tottenham and Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League season and the winger can play on either flank or operate through the middle.

With Lacazette adding pace through the middle, Lemar could added plenty more out wide and compliment Mesut Ozil’s creativity well. Arsenal pushing hard for Lemar is leading to many suggesting Alexis Sanchez will leave this summer (see, above) and the French international seems ready for the rigors of the PL after helping Monaco win the French title and reaching the semifinals of the UEFA Champions League.

His arrival could well mean the end at Arsenal for the likes of Theo Walcott, Danny Welbeck, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and perhaps Alex Iwobi with Wenger looking to rehaul his attack as Olivier Giroud is also being linked with a move to Everton.


Kelechi Iheanacho appears to be edging closer to the exit door at Manchester City with Leicester reportedly ready to pay $32 million for the Nigerian striker.

Iheanacho, 20, fell down the pecking order under Pep Guardiola last season and he had previously been linked with a move to West Ham United.

However, it appears the Foxes are ready to make Iheanacho their main man to partner Jamie Vardy up top and after signing Sevilla’s captain Vicente Iborra on Thursday, Craig Shakespeare is making some serious moves in the transfer window to make sure Leicester aren’t embroiled in another relegation battle this season.

Iheanacho has scored 21 goals in 64 games for City since breaking through as a teenager under Mauricio Pellegrino back in 2015. Despite becoming a cult figure at the Etihad Stadium, Iheanacho didn’t fit in with Guardiola’s style of play last season and played in just 20 PL games.

First Leagues Cup will be an all-Liga MX affair

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Given Major League Soccer’s record against Liga MX sides when both teams are bringing their best players to the party, it’s no surprise that the former has been left out of the Leagues Cup Final.

Instead, Cruz Azul and Tigres UANL will meet on Sept. 18 for the first ever crown in the history of the competition pitting teams from Mexico, Canada, and the United States top flights.

[ MORE: Predicting the USMNT September call-ups ]

Choosing not to play Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Jonathan Dos Santos, and Carlos Pavon amongst others, the LA Galaxy fell 2-1 to Cruz Azul in Carson, California, getting an Emil Cuello goal but allowing the below delightful winner from Orbelin Pineda just after halftime.

The Galaxy were in the midst of a nasty four-match fortnight, and opted for this match — a tournament semifinal against a league which has bossed its league — to rest their men. Not a choice we love, but a fair choice given the Galaxy’s mere 4-point advantage on 7th place in the West.

Tigres needed penalties to get past Club America in an absolutely bonkers semifinal.

The match was level at 2 after regulation, with two own goals, a penalty, and a 90th minute red card doled out to Tigres’ Roger Martinez.

The second Tigres own goal, which came before the club outlasted America 5-3 in penalties, came deep in stoppage.

USWNT lawsuit goes to trial May 5

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LOS ANGELES (AP) A judge has set a May 5 trial date for the gender discrimination lawsuit filed by the women’s national team against U.S. Soccer.

District Judge R. Gary Klausner assigned the date at a hearing Monday in Los Angeles, which came less than a week after mediation between the two sides broke down.

[ MORE: Predicting the USMNT September call-ups ]

The players sued U.S. Soccer in March, alleging institutionalized gender discrimination that includes inequitable compensation when compared with their counterparts on the men’s national team.

The federation claims that compensation for each team is the result of separate collective bargaining agreements, and that the pay structures are different as a result.

The sides had agreed to mediate the dispute after this summer’s World Cup in France. The U.S. beat the Netherlands in July for its second straight title, and fourth overall.

The players and U.S. Soccer had requested a trial date after the Tokyo Olympics, which start July 25.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Report: Zappacosta off to Roma as Chelsea trusts youth

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Tuesday was a great day to be Reece James.

Not that it hasn’t been a good summer altogether with Frank Lampard in charge of Chelsea.

[ MORE: Predicting the USMNT September call-ups ]

Lampard sanctioned the loan of Zappacosta to AS Roma, which puts James firmly in line for first team reps at Stamford Bridge.

The 19-year-old James has earned his place after two seasons on loan at Wigan Athletic, and Cesar Azpilicueta will either need rest or time at center back at some point.

As for Zappacosta, he was a curiosity buy who was serviceable during his time at Stamford Bridge. At Roma, though, he’ll… also be second choice to club captain Alessandro Florenzi.

Lampard is definitely giving the Blues’ youth a chance to shine during this transfer ban, and this may well be the best opportunity of James’ career.

Predicting the USMNT September call-ups

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The United States men’s national team has just a pair of friendlies remaining before its next CONCACAF competition, the Nations’ League.

Gregg Berhalter’s USMNT will meet Uruguay and Mexico in September, and the looming CNL — you know Berhalter wants some sort of crown given the Gold Cup Final loss to El Tri — certainly hints at a strong XI even with players like Christian Pulisic (Chelsea), Tyler Boyd (Besitkas) and Zack Steffen (Fortuna Dusseldorf, on loan from Man City) settling into new digs.

[ MORE: Klopp “couldn’t afford” Coutinho ]

Before we dare to name a 23-man outfit for these matches, we should note that there’s no guarantee every big team will want to release their players in September. But this projection will act under the assumption that his best healthy men will accept invitations or that, at least, Berhalter will invite his best healthy men.

The MLS playoff push may actually force his hand in that Berhalter may respect teams in said playoff race due (though MLS does not have every team playing over the break).

We’ll assume for this exercise that DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle) and Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig) don’t miraculously come fit.

Now for the Big Berhalter Questions (BBQs):

  1. Since Gyasi Zardes has scored three goals and an assist in his last six MLS games and there’s no chance Berhalter ignores him, who will not get a look: Tim Weah (Lille), Tyler Boyd (Besiktas) or … wait, it’s gonna be Boyd.
  2. Wil Trapp has been poor in a USMNT jersey, but has three assists in his last six MLS matches so will he…. book his place, too.

Finally, I’m not going to say that this 23-man roster will be correct, but it will be fun.

Goalkeepers (3)

Zack Steffen (Fortuna Dusseldorf)
Sean Johnson (New York City FC)
Kasey Keller (Millwall)
Pick the guy who you think I should pick here and pretend you like it better than:
David Bingham (LA Galaxy)

Defenders (8)

John Brooks (Wolfsburg)
Matt Miazga (Reading)
Aaron Long (West Ham New York Red Bulls)
Walker Zimmerman (LAFC)
Tim Ream (Fulham)
Sergino Dest (Ajax)
Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas)

Midfielders (6)

Christian Pulisic (Chelsea)
Weston McKennie (Schalke)
Michael Bradley (Toronto FC)
Julian Green (Greuther Fuerth)
Paxtom Pomykal (FC Dallas)
Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy)

Forwards (6)

Josh Sargent (Werder Bremen)
Jozy Altidore (Toronto FC)
Timothy Weah (Lille)
Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders)
Paul Arriola (DC United)
Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew)