Manchester United have wanted Neymar for a long time, but not until reading this morning’s edition of the Catalan newspaper Sport did we truly understand just how much they want him. With the aid of a popular online translation tool, we learn that United are ready to “throw the house out of the window” to land the Barcelona superstar. Wow.
Hot Football Transfer Gossip can’t even to begin to imagine how difficult it would be to throw a house out of a window – it suddenly makes throwing a kitchen sink at something sound relatively simple – but that’s what United are apparently prepared to do.
In practical terms, Sport says this involves the Red Devils making a £173m bid for the Brazilian and offering him a £21m-a-year salary – double what he earns at the Nou Camp. This is apparently “an offer he cannot refuse”.
Jose Mourinho is said to be making “regular phone calls” to Neymar and telling him a move to Old Trafford would be a “step forward in his career” because he wouldn’t have to “live in the shadow of Messi”, which sounds like it would get a bit annoying after a while. Back off Jose, play it cool – don’t ruin this.
Another Barcelona star who could be on his way to the Premier League is Ivan Rakitic, who the Sun says is being “used as bait” in Barca’s attempt to snare Philippe Coutinho from Liverpool.
This follows recent comments from Neymar that Coutinho “would totally fit in at Barcelona”. But now Neymar is apparently going to Man Utd and – yikes, hold on – it all suddenly starts to make sense. Neymar is already a United double agent!
Meanwhile, the Star says Lionel Messi has “attempted to block” Jordi Alba from making a “potential £130m move to Man Utd”. It’s unclear why the Star has said this because there is no suggestion United have made an offer, £130m or otherwise, for the full-back. Always good to get Messi into a headline though.
Arsenal’s transfer gossip is not as exciting. The Express says the Gunners are plotting a “cut-price” £13m move for Southampton midfielder Dusan Tadic – a good player but he’s no Neymar. Could do some damage in the Europa League next season though.
Monaco’s Tiemoue Bakayoko has already “agreed” a five-year deal to join Chelsea, claims the Star, while Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata wants to quit the Spanish capital and “reunite with Antonio Conte” at Stamford Bridge, says the Mirror. Which is weird, because Conte and Morata have never actually been at the the same club at the same time before. Is the Mirror suggesting that they are former lovers?
Elsewhere, Newcastle want Swansea’s Gylfi Sigurdsson to spearhead their return to the Premier League and will make a £15m bid for him (Sun), Middlesbrough defender Ben Gibson will be chased by the entire Premier League top six this summer (Mirror) and Barcelona are no longer interested in Arsenal right-back Hector Bellerin (Metro). Purely on the strength of his marking in the Gunners’ defeat at West Brom last week, probably.