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Mourinho on Martial post-baby birth: ‘He should be here’


In case you’re wondering whether the falling out between Jose Mourinho and Anthony Martial has any weight to it, well, it’s hard to imagine it’s very light.

Mourinho apparently and understandably was okay with Martial traveling back to France to be with his girlfriend as she gave birth to a baby.

[ MORE: Mitrovic in, Rondon out at NUFC ]

But Martial is not back, and Mourinho’s not okay with that. And given speculation that Martial never planned to return, perhaps this cements the idea that Man Utd director Ed Woodward will have to go against his own hope and sell the French striker reportedly wanted by Borussia Dortmund, Chelsea, and Bayern Munich.

“Anthony Martial has the baby and after the baby is born – beautiful baby, full of health, thank God – he should be here and he is not here.”

This coming on the same night that Liverpool battered the Red Devils and Mourinho asked for his players on break to come back early. With rumors that Mourinho would immediately use Martial money to bring in Ivan Perisic, can we really be far from the end of Martial’s Mancunian adventure?

Martial leaves Man Utd tour for birth of child, but was he allowed?

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Anthony Martial has left Manchester United’s preseason in the United States to be with his girlfriend ahead of the birth of their child.

Whether he has the permission of United boss Jose Mourinho could be the straw that breaks the proverbial camel’s back.

[ MORE: Canadian phenom to Bayern ]

The Manchester Evening News has been unable to confirm whether that’s the case, and the player may have signed his walking papers if Martial has left without Mourinho’s say-so.

And short squad or not, the story is just as bad for Martial’s future with the club if Mourinho isn’t giving permission for a player to leave preseason to witness the birth of a baby.

Mourinho reportedly wants Martial sold, while chairman Ed Woodward wants to hold onto the asset. If Martial is avoiding Mourinho’s rule, understandable or not, it really may force Woodward’s hand.

Martial, 22, scored 11 goals with nine assists in 45 matches for Mourinho last season, and had eight and eight in 42 the previous season.

His debut campaign was hot, though, with 18 and nine in 45.

Rumor roundup: Interest in Martial; Mexican to Newcastle?

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Sometimes a transfer rumor report talks itself out of probability by the time it reaches completion.

Sky Sports is reporting that Manchester United attacker Anthony Martial has interest from the likes of Chelsea, Bayern Munich, and Borussia Dortmund.

[ MORE: Klopp on Pulisic ]

But United doesn’t have interest in selling Martial and may pick up an option in his contract to extend him through the 2019-2020 season.

And the report says Chelsea has not made an offer — hard to believe United would sell inside the Premier League anyway — while Bayern thinks the price tag is too high. And if Bayern feels that way, than BVB is gonna pass, too.

Still, something to put on your radar.

Swansea City center back Federico Fernandez saw his side relegated last season and may not favor a campaign in the Championship.

The Chronicle says he could move to Newcastle on loan despite a transfer tag of less than $8 million.

Fernandez, however, did not name names outside of Krasnodar:

“The club (Krasnodar) are very interested in me and we will have to see what happens with the window. Of course I have a contract with Swansea and that’s why I’m here and working hard. But if they want me to come then of course I want to play at the highest level.”

The Magpies could land a defender from a World Cup participant, though, as free agent Diego Reyes may prefer a move to Newcastle (Turkish link) over interest from Fenerbahce and West Ham United.

The 55-times capped Mexican center back has played on the right as well, though he missed the tournament with a hamstring injury.

Transfer rumor roundup: Soyuncu to Arsenal, Martial staying put

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The Manchester Evening News says Manchester United has no intention of selling Anthony Martial this summer.

The report notes that Martial will remain with Alexis Sanchez and Marcus Rashford as United left wingers, and that United is going to continue its recruitment of Willian and Gareth Bale. In the case of Willian, MEN writer Samuel Luckhurst says United has already had some discussions with the Chelsea star.

[ MORE: Messi talks future ]

Speaking of United, the Red Devils and rivals Manchester City were reportedly both rebuffed in bids to take advantage of Inter Milan’s Financial Fair Play problems, tossing $62 million bids the way of the Italian club in hopes of prying center back Milan Skriniar from Serie A.

Skriniar, 23, played every league minute for Inter, scoring four goals and averaging 2.3 tackles and 4.5 clearances per game.

According to Sky Sports:

Both clubs made the approach for the Slovak knowing Inter need to raise around €40m (£35m) before June 30 to avoid falling foul of UEFA’s Financial Fair Play rules, but the Nerazzurri deem the 23-year-old unsellable after his outstanding debut season.

Newcastle United could spring a Liverpool reunion, with Martin Skrtel reportedly being offered to Rafa Benitez’s Magpies for just under $5 million. Skrtel, 33, scored thrice for Fenerbahce this season, leading the team in clearances with an audacious 7.3 per game. Only one player, Osmanlispor’s Yalcin Ayhan, had more (7.9) in all of the Turkish Super Lig.

Staying in Turkey, 21-year-old national team defender Caglar Soyuncu had some interesting comments on his recruitment. He’s currently with Freiburg, and confirmed Arsenal’s interest.

“Arsenal are one of the most important clubs in England,” he said. “I know they’re interested in me, but there’s nothing finalized yet about my transfer. After the national team camp we’ll have talks.”

Mourinho tears into forwards after loss at Brighton

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If Romelu Lukaku‘s fine season hasn’t made his Manchester United MVP argument for him, perhaps Friday’s lackluster and Lukaku-free loss to Brighton did the job for him.

[ MORE: Match recap | Brighton reacts ]

Jose Mourinho sure thinks so.

“For 10 months I get asked ‘why always Lukaku? Why always Lukaku, why always Lukaku? Why always this player? That guy doesn’t have a chance to start, the other one is on the bench.’,” he said. “You know why now.”

Mourinho went on to rip his fill-ins, as the front free of Juan Mata, Marcus Rashford, and Anthony Martial got little to nothing done.

“It was not good enough. The players that replaced others did not perform at a good level and when individuals do that it is difficult for the team to play well. Maybe now you will not ask me why A, B and C do not play so much.

“I knew what was going to happen and I told them, but that is what we got. … I wouldn’t say disappointed. I know them. I thought that the possibility to start the game and give reason would give them something.”

It’s safe to say Mourinho is planning on opening up the vault this summer — I still think the Pogba/Martial for Neymar swap is plausible — and the training ground probably won’t be a brilliant place to be over the final week of the season.