Gareth Bale. Toni Kroos. Sergio Ramos. Cristiano Ronaldo. James Rodriguez. Luka Modric. A generation of Real Madrid superstars that Manchester United have been repeatedly tipped to sign but have never actually signed. Not even one of them. They couldn’t even sign Alvaro Arbeloa.
But no matter, because there is now a new generation of Real Madrid superstars, and it look likes we will be able to spend the next few years watching Man Utd get tipped to sign them too. Starting with Casemiro.
The Sunday Express claims United boss Jose Mourinho is “so desperate” to capture the 25-year-old Brazilian midfielder that he is prepared to offer him “the same salary as Paul Pogba” – £290,000 a week, to be precise.
Sadly, Casemiro is believed to be “reluctant” to make the switch from the Bernabeu to Old Trafford, while Real also don’t want to sell him. So there’s a bit of work for United to do here. Maybe they hope to eventually chip them down with five years’ worth of transfer gossip (although that hasn’t worked with Bale yet).
READ MORE: How can we trust the FA now?
Mourinho is also reportedly keen on one of Atletico Madrid’s players. Not Antoine Griezmann; another one. It’s Jose Gimenez.
The Red Devils are set to fight Juventus to sign the 22-year-old Uruguayan defender, says the Sunday Express. Gimenez has a £60m release clause in his contract, which sounds rather steep considering he can’t even get in Atletico’s first team most weeks. But it’s United’s money, so what do we care?
Pochettino to replace Zidane?
Sticking with Madrid-based gossip, the Sun on Sunday have wheeled out their new favourite headline pun – “Harry Spain” – and reported that Real are “convinced” they will sign Harry KANE (see what they did there?) next summer.
What particular reason Los Blancos have to be “convinced”, other than bog standard arrogance, is not clear.
In fact, it seems there may be a disgruntled Arsenal supporter manning the Sun sports desk today, because the same paper claims Real are also going to nab Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino.
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“We want Maur” is the clever headline in this one, although the narrative is spoiled somewhat in the third paragraph, which says Madrid president Florentino Perez has “made it clear he has absolutely no plans to get rid of current coach Zinedine Zidane”.
Why say it then?? We haven’t got time for this nonsense!
In fact, this Pochettino story is just one in a humongously sensational selection of manager gossip in today’s papers.
Ancelotti tipped for Chelsea return
We also have Carlo Ancelotti getting installed as the favourite to replace Antonio Conte at Chelsea (Sunday Express), Manuel Pellegrini being lined up as the successor to dead man walking Slaven Bilic at West Ham (Sunday Telegraph) and – best of all – David Moyes getting tipped to make “sensational return” to Everton in place of the beleaguered Ronald Koeman (Sunday Mirror). Good thing about that one is it wouldn’t affect the existing Premier League ginger managerial quota.
Elsewhere, Man Utd (yes, them again) want to sign Valencia’s £30m-rated midfielder Carlos Soler (Mail on Sunday), Manchester City are planning a move for 20-year-old Lyon centre-back Mouctar Diakhaby (Sun on Sunday) and Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez could get £500m to spend in the next two transfer windows if businesswoman Amanda Staveley is successful in buying the club (Sunday Express). Alternatively, this whole Magpies takeover malarkey could just be an elaborate ruse by Mike Ashley to keep Rafa on Tyneside. Wouldn’t put it past him, eh.