Sheikh Mansour is getting itchy feet. Liverpool have spent millions on Virgil van Dijk; Manchester United have spent millions on Alexis Sanchez; Arsenal are about to spend millions on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang; Chelsea are set to spend millions on Edin Dzeko; even Brighton have spent millions on Jurgen Locadia.
And the Sheikh? He hasn’t spent a penny!
But the Manchester City owner didn’t get where his today (deputy prime minister of the United Arab Emirates; minister of presidential affairs; influential member of Abu Dhabi ruling family; two wives; six children) by spending nothing while everyone around him spends millions. Quite the opposite in fact.
So it might be time for the Premier League’s wealthiest man to slap down a £60m offer for Aymeric Laporte, just because he can.
The Sun says City are set to meet the release clause of the Athletic Bilbao defender, who Pep Guardiola tried and failed to sign in the summer, as they aim to boost their hopes of winning an unprecedented quadruple while ostentatiously flexing their financial muscle.
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The tabloid argues that Guardiola is in need of a new centre-back because Vincent Kompany is plagued by injuries and Eliaquim Mangala has “failed to fully justify his £42m price tag”. And the understatement of the month award goes to…
Dortmund demand Giroud in exchange for Aubameyang
Arsenal have run into a little bit of trouble trying to spend millions on the aforementioned Aubameyang, claims the Mirror.
The Gabonese goal machine’s club, Borussia Dortmund, have allegedly threatened to “delay” the striker’s move to the Emirates “until the summer” unless the Gunners provide them with a ready-made replacement in Olivier Giroud – and the issue is “unlikely to be resolved quickly”.
Arsene Wenger is currently checking with the Bundesliga giants that they’re completely sure they wouldn’t perhaps be interested in taking Chuba Akpom instead.
Meanwhile, Chelsea are umming and ahhing over the proposed signing of the also aforementioned Dzeko, reports the Telegraph.
The Blues have agreed a £24m deal to sign the Roma striker, but the move would apparently break the club’s own transfer policy of not paying transfer fees for players over the age of 30. Dzeko is 31 – way to make a man feel old, guys!
Chelsea’s £20m signing of another Roma player, Emerson Palmieri, is set to be completed “in the coming days” because the left-back is only 23. Lucky fella.
Age is no object to Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson (70), who is poised to pay £8.5m for Inter Milan striker Eder, despite the fact he is also 31 (Mail). Beggars can’t be choosers when the only striker in your squad is Christian Benteke.
The Serie A club will reportedly use these funds to bring in Liverpool’s Daniel Sturridge for a £2m loan fee plus his very high wages.
Elsewhere, Arsenal are set to battle Tottenham and Man Utd for Paris Saint-Germain’s £35m-rated attacking midfielder Lucas Moura (Mirror), Newcastle are working on a deal to bring Atletico Madrid striker Kevin Gameiro to Tyneside for a possible club record transfer fee (Express) and Chelsea legend Frank Lampard is in talks become the new manager of Oxford United (Sun).
This is the perfect opportunity to get West Ham’s former assistant manager Frank Lampard in as his number two.