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Transfer news: Coutinho to Chelsea, De Ligt to Man United

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The latest transfer news continues across the Premier League and here’s a look at some of the juiciest rumors.

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First up, Philippe Coutinho has been linked with a move back to England with Chelsea his latest potential destination as they are said to be ‘in negotiations’ with Barcelona about signing him on a permanent deal.

The Brazilian playmaker is still a Barcelona player but he’s spent the 2019-20 season on loan at Bayern Munich.

According to The Sun newspaper the 27-year-old midfielder will leave Bayern at the end of this season with the Bavarian giants unwilling to trigger his $130 million release clause.

Arsenal, Tottenham and Man United are all said to be in the running to sign Coutinho but it is Chelsea who have taken the first step to sign the Brazilian who was sensational at Liverpool before his move to Barcelona 18 months ago. Coutinho never settled properly at the Nou Camp as he was shipped out on loan to Bayern and it is highly unlikely Barca will get even half of the $175 million they paid to Liverpool for him in January 2018.

Per the report, Coutinho would be available for between $65-80 million and that could be worth a punt for several Premier League clubs given his past form for Liverpool in England’s top-flight. His ability to drop his shoulder, dictate the tempo of a game and deliver stunning goals and deliveries from long-range is his trademark.

With Willian and Pedro both likely to leave Chelsea this summer, Frank Lampard will need some attacking reinforcements but he already has Hakim Ziyech arriving from Ajax, plus Christian Pulisic, Ross Barkley, Mason Mount and Callum Hudson-Odoi battling for spots in the attacking midfield positions. In terms of the other clubs interested in Coutinho, it would seem like Tottenham would be the best fit as they recently lost playmaker Christian Eriksen and both Man United and Arsenal seem set with their current attacking talents.

Coutinho’s quality means he would be a good buy for any Premier League club with his former manager at Liverpool, Brendan Rodgers, linked with a shock move to bring him to Leicester City. Coutinho may not fit in at Barcelona but he is still loved by many in the Premier League, even after his acrimonious departure from Liverpool.


Another player who sealed a big move but has failed to settle is Matthijs de Ligt.

The Daily Express say that Man United have made De Ligt one of their top targets for this summer as the 20-year-old Dutch center back has failed to impress after his mega transfer from Ajax to Juventus last summer.

De Ligt looked likely to head to Man United for most of last summer but instead joined Juve for $100 million but under Maurizio Sarri he’s struggled to be a regular and both parties are reportedly ready to move on when the next transfer window arrives.

A towering presence at the heart of Ajax’s defense in their run to the Champions League semifinals in 2018-19, plus a rising star on the international stage with the Netherlands, De Ligt’s game would be suited well to the Premier League.

Do Man United need another center back? Right now Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof have formed a pretty solid partnership in central defense, flanked by Luke Shaw and Aaron Wan-Bissaka, with Eric Bailly and Phil Jones back up center back options.

That said, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has used a 3-4-3 system on many occasions this season, especially against the Premier League big boys away from home, and that could mean there’s space for De Ligt, Maguire and Lindelof in the same lineup.

There’s no doubt Juve will be looking to recoup the vast majority of the $100 million they paid for De Ligt last summer but that’s unlikely. One potential deal suggested, per the report, is that Paul Pogba could head back to Juventus with De Ligt part of the deal.

Man United’s attack is set with Bruno Fernandes pulling the strings and the duo of Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford delivering. Shoring up midfield and defense should remain Solskjaer’s top priority and if De Ligt can regain the amazing form from his Ajax days, he would have a huge impact.

Transfer rumor roundup: Saul to Man Utd; Bale, Ramsey to Everton

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The Saul Niguez to Manchester United rumors are not going away.

The Red Devils are reportedly ready to smash their club transfer record and trigger Saul’s approximate $168 million release clause to bring him from Atletico Madrid to Old Trafford.

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Saul, 25, has become an indispensable part of Diego Simeone’s midfield and was one of the steadiest parts of Atleti’s victory over Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League.

Saul, Koke, and Thomas Partey give Atleti three of the best central midfielders in the world, and United would see a similar threesome between Saul, Bruno Fernandes, and Scott McTominay or Fred.

There’s little debate here. If Paul Pogba is sold, there are few better places for the money to be reinvested than Saul. Better call him.


Everton is looking to bring veteran Premier League star quality to its attack in 2020.

The Toffees already have Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin thriving under Carlo Ancelotti, and the Italian reportedly likes the look of former Arsenal and Tottenham heroes

According to 90min.com, Ancelotti is hopeful of bringing Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale and Juventus’ Aaron Ramsey back to England.

The Welshmen have plenty of experience together. Ramsey will be an easier get than Bale, though the hold up for both will be the appetite to pay two monumental wages in addition to transfer fees.

There are rumors that Real would consider letting Bale walk at no cost due to his massive salary, while Juventus is said to be ready to listen if Ramsey wants to leave due to a lack of playing time.

The pair make a combined $1.2 million per week, which is close to the combined weekly wages of Everton’s top 10 earners.

A report’s a report, but you’d have to think the Toffees would be jettisoning some players if the Ramsey-Bale arrival is an option. Morgan Schneiderlin and Theo Walcott are entering the final years of their contracts in 2020/21.

Juventus players, staff set to sacrifice up to $100M in wages

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Juventus players and coaches have agreed to forego pay for March, April, May, and June to the tune of approximately $100 million.

The Old Lady has been hit internally by coronavirus, with players Paulo Dybala, Blaise Matuidi, and Daniele Rugani testing positive for COVID-19.

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Italian football federation chief Gabriele Gravina has become a worldwide name during the COVID-19 crisis, and praised the move by Juve’s players and staff (via Football-Italia).

“The agreement reached by Juventus is an example for the whole system. I thank Giorgio Chiellini, his teammates and Maurizio Sarri because, in wake of the collaboration that the FIGC hopes to have in days, they placed general interests at the heart of their conversations with the club.

“Unity and solidarity in the world of football represent the first great response to the emergency we’re experiencing, and that risks becoming even more serious if we don’t resume playing soon. Only through the contribution of all the protagonists, each of them playing their part, will we make football stronger.”

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Juventus confirm Dybala tests positive for coronavirus

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Juventus have confirmed that star playmaker Paulo Dybala has tested positive for coronavirus.

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The Serie A side now have three players who have COVID-19 with Dybala joining Daniele Rugani and Blaise Matuidi in testing positive.

Juve released the following statement on Saturday as the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Gonzalo Higuain have flown home to Madeira and Argentina respectively to self-isolate.

“Paulo Dybala has undergone medical tests that revealed a positive result for Coronavirus-COVID19. He has been in voluntary home isolation since Wednesday 11 March. He will continue to be monitored, following the usual regime. He is well and is asymptomatic.”

In recent days Italy has overtaken China as the country with the most deaths during the coronavirus pandemic as several Serie A stars have tested positive as players from Juventus and Sampdoria have been impacted.

Dybala sent out the following message on social media on Saturday confirming he has coronavirus as he wanted to reassure people that he was doing fine, as was his girlfriend Oriana who has also tested positive for COVID-19.

“Hello everyone, I wanted to inform you that we have just received the results of the COVID-19 test and both Oriana and I tested positive. Fortunately we are in perfect condition. Thanks for your messages and greetings to all,” Dybala said.

Matuidi becomes second Juve player to test positive for coronavirus

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Add Blaise Matuidi to the growing list of footballers who have tested positive for coronavirus.

Juventus announced the news on Tuesday, six days after teammate Daniele Rugani tested positive for COVID-19. Matuidi entered isolation on the same day, March 11.

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According to Juve, Matuidi “has been in voluntary home isolation. He will continue to be monitored and will follow the same regimen. He is well and is asymptomatic.”

Juve has a one-point lead on Lazio in a bid to win its ninth-straight and 36th-total scudetto.

Matuidi has played in 31 matches with a goal and two assists this season, his third with Juve. He won the World Cup with France and has 84 caps.

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