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Reports: Rabiot picks Juventus, will sign five-year contract

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According to a report by Football Italia which corroborates an earlier report by Sky Italia, former Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Adrien Rabiot has decided to sign with Juventus and will sign a five-year contract with the Italian champions.

The decision means Manchester United will miss out on the free agent midfielder, having reportedly submitted an offer. Rabiot had previously admitted his final decision was between those two teams.

The reports say that his deal with Juventus will be worth $7.9 million per year plus an $11.3 million signing bonus. According to a report by Goal.com’s Romeo Agresti, Juve sporting director Fabio Paratici has led the charge for the club and has worked heavily to convince Rabiot’s mother and agent Veronique of the agreement.

Rabiot becomes the second high-profile free-agent midfielder to sign with Juventus, following Aaron Ramsey. He will have heavy competition in the Juventus midfield with Ramsey, Blaise Matuidi, Sami Khedira, Miralem Pjanic, Rodrigo Betancur, and Emre Can all vying for time in the center of the pitch. It is worth noting that Matuidi and Khedira are both 32 years old, and the latter has suffered through numerous injury troubles over the last few years.

The 24-year-old French midfielder is a highly regarded talent, but has been plagued by off-field troubles at both the club and national team levels. Veronique has also been criticized for her outspoken attack of PSG’s handling of contract extension negotiations. Rabiot was a regular in the PSG lineup until he was frozen out for refusing a contract extension, not appearing for the club after early December.

Report: Sarri to be released from Chelsea contract

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Just two days after the Blues hoisted the Europa League crown, a report claims that Maurizio Sarri will be released from his Chelsea contract so he can leave Stamford Bridge and take the Juventus job.

The report comes from Italian journalist Alfredo Pedulla, a correspondent for Italian television outlet SportItalia and independent journalist who is close to Sarri. According to Football Italia, Pedulla was the first on the scene when Sarri departed Napoli for Chelsea just one year ago and has a very good relationship with the current Blues boss.

Pedulla’s report states that Sarri’s agent Fali Ramadani has departed London with assurances from Chelsea brass that the Italian will be free to leave the club this summer without breaching his contract. Reportedly, Chelsea spoke with Ramadani nearly three weeks ago to begin discussions regarding Sarri’s departure independent of the outcome of the Europa League final.

Since, the report has been corroborated by notable Italian journalist Gianluca di Marzio, who additionally reports that Sarri himself met with Chelsea executive director Marina Granovskaia to reiterate his desire for a return to Italy.

Rumors have flown for weeks of Sarri’s departure this summer after a roller coaster season that saw the club finish third in the Premier League and win the Europa League title, while also reaching the League Cup final. Those outcomes on paper would have likely been acceptable for Sarri’s first year in charge had it not been for a few especially trying moments throughout the campaign that saw the Italian come under heavy fire.

The club lost three Premier League games in a six-match span through December, then dropped to Bournemouth, Arsenal, and Manchester City by a combined 12-0 sandwiched over a 5-0 win against Huddersfield Town, a perfect encapsulation of the range of emotions Chelsea felt this season. Sarri also made the controversial decision to move Player of the Year defensive midfielder N'Golo Kante from his natural position and use new signing Jorginho in that spot instead, to mixed success.

Sarri was often combative when faced with questions about his possible departure at press conferences in recent weeks, although it appears there was substance to those questions after all. Rumors have tabbed former Chelsea midfielder and current Derby County manager Frank Lampard as the favorite to take over should Sarri indeed leave, but nothing concrete has taken place in that regard publicly with Sarri’s future still in question.

With Massimilano Allegri leaving Juventus after securing the club’s 10th straight Serie A crown, Sarri appears to have seized the opportunity to return to his home country. The Juventus squad is in need of a serious overhaul, with a number of aging players weighing down the roster. 34-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo still seems to be at his goalscoring best, but Mario Mandzukic, Juan Cuadrado, Sami Khedira, Blaise Matuidi, Giorgio Chiellini, and Leonardo Bonucci are all north of 30 years old, with Miralem Pjanic and Wojciech Szczesny nearly there. The club has Paulo Dybala, Federico Bernardeschi, Daniele Rugani, Rodrigo Betancur, and Emre Can all 25 years old or younger along with 19-year-old breakout star Moise Kean, but otherwise the youthful talent is severely lacking.

Continuing at Chelsea, however, would have come with its own baggage as well. The Blues are facing a FIFA-imposed transfer ban that is currently under appeal in the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Eden Hazard, the club’s star attacking player, is likely headed to Real Madrid this summer for a hefty fee, and pending the outcome of the CAS decision, the club could have lots of money to spend in the coming transfer fee. American winger Christian Pulisic has already officially joined the club after finishing out the season with Borussia Dortmund. Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is also known for running through managers at a vicious pace, and Sarri may have wanted to work for someone with a less itchy trigger finger.

Alongside Sarri, former Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has also returned home to Italy to take the Inter Milan job, with the AC Milan managerial position still open after the departure of Gennaro Gattuso.

Pogba reportedly ready to leave Man Utd; But where would he go?

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Paul Pogba doesn’t intend to be at Manchester United for much longer, according to a report from L’Equipe.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer‘s best player has reportedly told some teammates that he plans to leave the Old Trafford club this summer, three years removed from his spectacular return from Juventus.

[ MORE: Solskjaer, Pep trade jabs ]

Rumors of a connection with Real Madrid have persisted, and Pep Guardiola was asked earlier Tuesday about an offer extended the way of Man City (Guardiola vehemently denied it).

Perhaps United does want to move on from the 26-year-old. We’ll play along. Here are a few sensational moves that could make some sense for both player and United.

Real Madrid: Remember 2009? That’s when an aging Real Madrid lost La Liga to Barcelona by nine points, led in scoring by Raul (aged 32), Ruud van Nistelrooy (32), and Gonzalo Higuain (21). They turned to Manchester United for a splashy buy of Cristiano Ronaldo, assuming he had higher levels to reach in his career.

Equating Pogba to one of the greatest players of all-time is silly at this stage, but Real will make some massive splashes this summer (perhaps Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic, and Pogba?). Imagine that trio combining with a healthy Vinicius Junior.

Real could part ways with Raphael Varane, who seems to want to taste the Premier League, and maybe Gareth Bale could also return to the league.

PSG: You though Alexis Sanchez for Henrikh Mkhitaryan was a sexy swap?The fun of such deals continues with one for the ages. Heading to Paris would be French World Cup hero Pogba. Going to United: former rumor mill darling Neymar. To borrow a phrase from Twitter trade prognosticators: Who says no?

Juventus: Given the way teams in Italy tend to extend stars vitality and careers, Pogba’s essentially a baby by their standards. Cristiano Ronaldo has committed to The Old Lady and the club’s fan base is essentially yawning at scudetti. Pogba could form an incredible midfield under Ronaldo, teaming with Miralem Pjanic and Emre Can. The challenge here is the sum of money Juve would have to unload for Pogba, presuming it doesn’t part ways with Paulo Dybala (though Moise Kean is ready for prime time).

Ronaldo hat trick springs Juventus comeback (video)

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Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat trick, backing up his trash talk and leading Juventus to the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals.

It was a 3-0 second leg win for Juventus over Ronaldo’s old Spanish rivals Atletico Madrid in Turin, stunning the stingy defense he’s burdened so many times.

Ronaldo mimicked Diego Simeone’s “bollocks” celebration after putting Juve in front.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

VAR looked like it could become a part of the festivities within four minutes of kickoff, as Cristiano Ronaldo’s lunge at Jan Oblak caught ball but then sent him through the keeper before Leonardo Bonucci punched the ball into the goal.

But nothing came of it, and the match remained scoreless.

Antoine Griezmann tested Wojciech Szczesny with a long range effort, but the keeper saved the ball from the back of the goal.

Ronaldo then put Juve ahead with his head, powering through Juanfran to finish an Emre Can cross. 1-0, game on, courtesy of Ronaldo’s 122nd UEFA Champions League goal.

Ronaldo headed wide just before halftime, and it truly felt like Juve was headed for a comeback.

His forehead did the trick just after the break, goal line technology defying what looked like an amazing Jan Oblak save.

A lull in chances snapped when substitute Moise Kean just missed with an effort across goal.

Fiorentina-bred Federico Bernardeschi then won a penalty to give Juve its first lead of the tie, with Ronaldo converted the hat trick.

Serie A: Moise Kean scores twice; Juve go 19 points clear

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Ladies and gentleman, allow us to be the very first ones to say it: the Serie A title race is over.

[ MORE: Tottenham to move into new stadium in April ]

Juventus beat Udinese 4-1 on Friday to extend their narrow healthy 16-point advantage over Napoli to 19 points. With just 11 games left to play, the Bianconeri could have their eighth straight scudetto mathematically sealed before April begins.

19-year-old phenom Moise Kean scored twice in the first half for Massimiliano Allegri’s side, before Emre Can tacked on a third from the penalty spot in the 67th minute, and Blaise Matuidi completed Juve’s scoring with a fourth in the 71st. Kean won the penalty for Juve’s third goal, but the future Italy star wasn’t afforded the opportunity to complete his hat trick.

It was an overwhelming onslaught from the very beginning, just as their latest title defense has been from the season’s opening day.

[ MORE: Premier League investigating UEFA’s FFP allegations against Man City ]

The day’s only blemish came in the 81st minute, when Kevin Lasagna pulled a goal back for the visitors.

To further demonstrate Juve’s dominance of the entirety of Serie A, Cristiano Ronaldo was left on the bench as an unused substitute for the first time this season, and the 4-1 scoreline was hardly more than a light workout for his eight-time champions-elect teammates.