Pogba outside, Tchouameni inside? Barcelona have offered the Man United midfielder

Paul Pogba’s future at Manchester United is shrouded in mystery – ESPN’s Insider Notebook has the latest. MORE: United may have found their replacement.

Jump to: Tchouameni wanted man | Sterling at the crossroads of the city | Ilaix’s fear of Barça | Jese’s bizarre injury | Fenerbahçe’s transfer error

Barcelona come as Pogba’s future takes a new turn

Barcelona are the latest club to be offered a free transfer to Manchester United’s Paul Pogba next summer, sources have told ESPN.

Pogba, 28, is out of contract at Old Trafford at the end of the season and his agent Mino Raiola is probing some of the European heavyweights with a view to finding a new club for the midfielder. Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid and several Premier League clubs have also been approached regarding Pogba, who can start negotiations from January 1.

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Pogba has not made any decision on his future and has not ruled out extending his time at United, although he will explore other options available to him as well. Barca are reportedly considering signing the France international on a free transfer as they seek to rebuild their squad under new president Joan Laporta.

However, while there would technically be no fees involved, the Catalan club are unsure whether, in their financial situation, they would be able to pay the commission that Raiola would demand. Barcelona’s gross debt stands at 1.4 billion euros. There are also doubts whether Pogba would fit into the club’s new pay structure at a time when some of the squad’s biggest employees are being asked to accept pay cuts.

Laporta recently revealed that salaries and depreciation are still around 80% of the expected income of € 765million for the season. The league’s economic controls require that figure to be around 70%, although Barca’s are even lower this season as they need to make good recent losses. – Sam Marsden and Moises Llorens

Tchouameni: Pogba’s replacement?

Move over to Pogba: Aurélien Tchouameni is the name on everyone’s lips right now. Scouts from Real Madrid, PSG, Manchester United, Liverpool and Manchester City have all watched the Monaco midfielder in action this season as the race prepares for one of Europe’s top prospects.

Sources told ESPN that a royalty of between € 50m and € 60m would be needed to bring Monaco to the negotiating table, with Tchouameni on United’s radar if they fail to strike a new deal for Pogba . Chelsea have also shown interest in the 21-year-old in the past, and the Champions League winners are on good terms with the player’s agent Jonathan Kebe, who also represents Seville’s Jules Kounde. Chelsea tried to land Koundé last summer but failed to secure a deal for the center-back.

– Laurens: France is back on track

Tchouameni, 21, has five caps for France and was remarkable in his victory in the Nations League final against Spain. He also shone on his full international debut last month against Bosnia and has had a strong start to the Ligue 1 season, building on an impressive campaign last year.

He has improved a lot under the leadership of Niko Kovac, since he left Bordeaux for the Principality for 18 million euros in January 2020. Monaco expected to receive offers last summer, but the European heavyweights have turned their attention elsewhere. However, given Tchouameni’s form, the Ligue 1 side are bracing for a flurry of offers for their much-requested star. – Julien Laurens

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Julien Laurens explains why there is a lot of interest in the Premier League for midfielder Aurélien Tchouameni.

Sterling will fight for City’s place before sorting out the future

Raheem Sterling wants to focus on reclaiming his place at Manchester City before deciding whether or not to extend his stay at the Etihad Stadium, sources have told ESPN.

Sterling has a contract until 2023 and although City are keen to make a new long-term deal, the England international will first make sure to play a key role for the club in the future. The 26-year-old has won three Premier League titles since arriving from Liverpool in 2015, but has found few opportunities after falling out of favor with manager Pep Guardiola, starting two of City’s seven Premier League games until now this season.

Sources told ESPN that City staff were impressed with how Sterling worked in training to adjust to a new No.9 role following the departure of Sergio Aguero and the summer signing of Jack Grealish. . He won praise in the role against Paris Saint-Germain, despite City losing 2-0.

Sterling hinted at his displeasure with his lack of playing time on Thursday when he said he could look to move if things didn’t improve, and although he suggested he would be open to playing abroad, sources told ESPN he had not made a decision. his next destination.

If Sterling decides his future lies elsewhere, sources have told ESPN that Barcelona are monitoring his situation and may attempt to bring him to Camp Nou. Barca boss Ronald Koeman has made it clear that the club are short in attack, with breadth and pace being a particular problem for the failed Catalans, who have won only once in their last six games.

While Barca CEO Ferran Reverter has said they need to cut their payroll further, he said there may be money available for a January signing, although sources say any move for Sterling would likely depend on its initial loan availability.

Sterling was one of England’s most notable players in his run to the European Championship final this summer and is approaching 100 Premier League goals and 300 appearances. – Rob Dawson, Moises Llorens and Sam Marsden

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Julien Laurens is pitching for Spain boss Luis Enrique to replace Ronald Koeman in Barcelona.

Barcelona fear another Ilaix with Dembele

Barcelona are concerned that a delay in extending Ousmane Dembele’s contract at Camp Nou may be due to his agent seeking interest from Premier League clubs, sources have told ESPN.

Dembele’s contract with Barca expires next summer and he has yet to make a new deal with the club. The player expressed the wish to extend his stay but the discussions with his representative, Moussa Sissoko, were not so simple.

The French striker is free to negotiate with other clubs from January 1, when he enters the final six months of his contract, and sources say Barca see parallels with Ilaix Moriba’s departure this summer. Ilaix was also in the last year of his contract. When his agents rejected a renewal offer, Barca sent him to train with the B squad and told him he wouldn’t play for the club if he didn’t sign new terms. The young midfielder finally signed for RB Leizpig for around € 20million in August, with his representatives doing a nice commission on the deal.

If Dembele, who came close to joining Manchester United in 2020, were to terminate his contract and leave Barca for free, those involved in the move would also receive a hefty signing bonus.

Sources at Barca say next month will be key as the January transfer window approaches. If an agreement cannot be reached with Dembele’s agent, the former Borussia Dortmund winger could find himself confined in the stands for the remainder of the season. – Moises Llorens and Sam Marsden

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Julien Laurens and Alejandro Moreno cannot believe that Barcelona president Joan Laporta publicly admits that he had hoped Lionel Messi would play for free.

Jese, an argument, a car collision and « fake news »

Jese Rodriguez, former Real Madrid and PSG striker, denounce « fake news » and demand « respect » this week after reporting that his partner had crushed his foot with his car following an argument.

The incident came after Jese – who is enjoying a career rebirth at his hometown club Las Palmas with three goals and four assists in La Liga 2 this season – attended a concert at the Gran Canaria Arena on Sunday. A video that went viral appeared to show Jese limping and helped by friends outside the venue.

Sources told ESPN that although Jese was struck by the vehicle, it was not clear whether the collision was intentional or accidental – although the player and his partner, model and reality TV star Aurah Ruiz, denied the allegations on social media. media.

Jese missed training on Monday and Tuesday, raising fears he would be absent for the Las Palmas derby with local rivals Tenerife on Saturday, before being involved as usual on Wednesday.

The 28-year-old was a prominent prospect as a youngster at Real Madrid’s academy, breaking the single-season goalscoring record for B team Castilla in 2012-13. His progress was interrupted by a cruciate ligament injury in 2014 and he experienced disappointing periods with PSG, Stoke City, Real Betis and Sporting Lisbon before returning to Las Palmas this year.

Jese has often made headlines for his off-field activities, releasing a series of reggaeton singles as his musical alter ego ‘Jey M’. – Alex Kirkland and Rodrigo Faez

Transfer errors: Fenerbahce mistakenly sent money to a Dutch car dealership

Serie A team Empoli finally received the final installment for the departure of midfielder Miha Zajc a year later after Fenerbahce inadvertently sent the funds to a Dutch car dealership.

In January 2019, Empoli accepted Zajc’s departure from the Turkish side for an amount of 4 million euros, payable in three installments. However, the final payment of € 830,000 did not arrive in their bank account until September 2021. Fenerbahce made the payment on September 30, 2020 but inserted the wrong bank details of the recipient and the money ended up with a car dealership in the Dutch city of Doetinchem.

After discovering the administrative error, Empoli contacted the company to request the money, but the money was rejected. Empoli threatened to cancel the transfer, which led Fenerbahce to sue the Dutch company, and it was not until the following September that a court in Gelderland ruled in favor of the Turkish side.

Slovenia international Zajc joined Empoli from Olimpija Ljubljana in his homeland in January 2017 and following his relegation to the Italian second division he was instrumental in their return to Serie A the following campaign.

The 27-year-old struggled to secure a regular spot at Fenerbahce and spent the 2020-21 season in Italy on loan at Genoa. – Andrew Cesare Richardson

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