Transfer Talk Man United keen on Gareth Bale but price is now £200m

Gareth Bale played the hero role for Real Madrid in the Champions League final, but Stewart Robson does not think his future is in Spain.

The transfer window is open, and Transfer Talk has the latest rumours making the rounds. Follow live with our daily blog throughout the summer.

TOP STORY: Man United to launch £200m Bale bid

Manchester United must be kicking themselves that they didn’t push through a deal for Gareth Bale last summer, with Real Madrid now demanding upward of £200 million for the Welshman following his performance in the Champions League final.

Bale stole the show Saturday with his acrobatic overhead kick to restore Real’s lead against Liverpool, but, according to The Sun, he didn’t speak to Zinedine Zidane for three hours after the game. It’s thought the pair’s relationship has cooled this season, with Bale often having to settle for a substitute role, as he did in Kiev. The winger hinted at his frustration after the final whistle, telling the media he needs to play more next year.

While United lead the queue for Bale’s signature, and could meet his £650,000-a-week wage demands, there are doubts about whether he would fit Jose Mourinho’s style of play.

The Sun says the former Tottenham star would “have concerns” about playing under the United boss, who may have some convincing to do in order to sign his leading target.


22.32 BST: That’s going to bring Monday’s live edition of Transfer Talk to a close. Sincere thanks to you all for joining us, and be sure to check back in a few short hours when we return with all the latest gossip pulled from Tuesday’s back pages.

22.30 BST: And finally, here’s some Liverpool goalkeeper news, though not exactly what Reds fans will have hoped for.

Roma sporting director Monchi has updated the situation of coveted keeper Alisson, saying not one of his three conditions for a transfer have been met by any club.

The Reds, of course, have reportedly lined up a move for the Brazil No. 1. But speaking at an event on Monday, the former Sevilla chief denied that a Rome exit for the former Internacional man was imminent.

“In order for a player to leave, there have to be three elements in place: an offer, a yes from the club and from the player. As of today, we have nothing of the sort,” Monchi said.

22.18 BST: Every club in Manchester has seemingly failed to sign Inter Milan defender Milan Skriniar, according to Corriere dello Sport, who say both City and United’s £53 million bids to land the 23-year-year-old Slovakia international were quickly denied as the club looks ahead to Champions League football next term.

22.07 BST: Mexico winger Hirving Lozano shouldn’t be in a rush to leave PSV Eindhoven, says El Tri director of national teams Dennis te Kloese.

The 22-year-old Lozano signed for the Dutch champions from Pachuca in July 2017 and netted 17 goals in 29 games in his debut season in the Eredivisie, sparking speculation that he could look for a transfer to a bigger league after the World Cup. However, Te Kloese says Pump. The. Breaks.

“I think he might be ready, but I don’t think he needs to be in a rush,” he said. “The time will come for him. He was born in 1995 so, basically, he has a lot of years ahead in his career.”

21.44 BST: And we’re back in Italy, where our friends at Tuttosport are reporting that Inter Milan are set to offer forward Eder to Valencia in exchange for Portuguese full-back Joao Cancelo’s permanent stay at the San Siro.

Per the outlet, Inter have a €35 million option to buy the on-loan defender but can’t afford the hefty price tag. So, as a result, they are prepared to include the Brazil-born Eder in a deal in hopes of lowering the cost.

21.27 BST: Eintracht Frankfurt have announced the departure of longtime forward Alex Meier, whose contract will be allowed to expire on June 30.

Meier joined Eintracht from Hamburg in July 2005. Yes, you read that correctly: 2005.

21.06 BST: Done Deal! And just like that, Fabinho to Liverpool is official!

(Still not a goalkeeper… we know, we know, Reds fans)

20.51 BST: And we’ve got a Done Deal … for a coach.

We head to Spain, where Pablo Machin has joined Sevilla on a two-year deal after spending the past five years with Catalan side Girona.

20.15 BST: Liverpool are close to signing — no, not a goalkeeper! — Monaco midfielder Fabinho in a deal worth up to €50 million, a source has told ESPN FC.

Fabinho, 24, is seen as replacement for Emre Can, who is expected to leave for free and sign for Juventus this summer, the source added.

19.33 BST: Manchester City are awaiting a final answer from Leicester on their $100 million offer for winger Ryad Mahrez, according to ESPN Deportes’ Jordi Blanco.

The story cites a source who indicates an agreement has already been made, as the Foxes are set to finally fulfill their promise to let the Algeria international leave at season’s end after denying him a move to the Etihad in January.

18.52 BST: More from Juve, Manchester United and Tuttosport as the outlet indicates the Old Lady are readying a €15m bid for out-of-favour full-back Matteo Darmian.

The Italy international previously played for Juve’s bitter rivals Torino before leaving to join United for a similar fee back in 2015.

18.15 BST: Paul Pogba wants out at Manchester United, and has asked agent Mino Raiola to seal a return to Juventus where the France midfielder enjoyed the best football of his career, according to Tuttosport.

Pogba, a United academy product, returned to Old Trafford in the summer of 2016 for a then-record fee of £89 million after spending four successful years with the Bianconeri. And now, apparently, he’s looking to recapture those old feelings in Italy.

17.50 BST: Lionel Messi has indicated he will not leave Barcelona for another team in Europe once the time comes to move on.

Messi has always said he would like to rejoin boyhood club Newell’s Old Boys. And the five-time Ballon d’Or winner told Argentine television station El Trece that, while that happening is no certainty, he’s increasingly sure his time in Europe will end at the Camp Nou.

“I always said I wanted to play in Argentine football one day,” Messi said.

“I don’t know if it will happen but I have it in my mind. It would be at Newell’s, nowhere else. I would like to do that for at least six months, but you never know what will happen.

“I’m increasingly sure that in Europe, Barcelona will be my only club.”

16.53 BST: Back over at Gazzetta dello Sport, they say that Tottenham’s Mousa Dembele is a transfer priority for Inter.

Luciano Spalletti’s side face competition from Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli for the Spurs man.

16.49 BST: A slow news day in terms of transfers. Le Progres in France say Lyon have made contact with Crystal Palace defender Mamadou Sakho.

16.20 BST: Time for more talk over the future of Emre Can. Gazzetta dello Sport believe that he has a medical penciled in at Juventus later this week.

They go on to say that Liverpool could try and take Sami Khedira in an unrelated deal, freeing up the Old Lady to move for Real Madrid’s Mateo Kovacic.

Because everyone loves the transfer merry-go-round…

16.12 BST: Done Deal! Borussia Dortmund have signed highly rated Eintracht Frankfurt star Marius Wolf. The 23-year-old has agreed a five-year deal and said: “My objective with Dortmund in the coming years is to be successful and, if possible, win a few titles.”

16.03 BST: Your daily Sergej Milinkovic-Savic update …

15.50 BST: The big numbers keep coming today. Manchester United have been linked with a £200m bid for Gareth Bale, Inter Milan’s Mauro Icardi is seen as being worth double that and now Jan Oblak could be in line for a monster release clause.

AS reckon Atletico Madrid are wary of interest in their goalkeeper from PSG and Liverpool and are willing to offer him a new deal — with a €200m release clause.

15.40 BST: Liverpool striker Divock Origi has fallen out of favour at Anfield and spent the season at Wolfsburg, scoring seven goals. And according to reports, Besiktas have enquired about him.

15.11 BST: Mauro Icardi has been linked with Chelsea but … well, let Inter Milan president Erick Thohir take it away: “Icardi has a release clause of €110m, any club thinking of paying it has to speak to the Inter executives,” he told TopSkor.

“In Italy he’d cost much more than that figure, he could cost €200m, €300m or even €400m.


14.39 BST: The Bale stories keep coming. This from BBC Sport is pretty definitive: Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale will not return to Tottenham this summer. It also states: “Very few clubs could match his present financial demands.”

14.19 BST: Back to REAL transfer news now and a juicy line from The Telegraph. Tottenham may have cooled their interest in Ryan Sessegnon but could switch their attention to Borussia Dortmund star Christian Pulisic. The report claims the United States ace is valued at around £50m.

14.16 BST: Mark, no!

14.14 BST: (See 9.38 BST) We have a Done Deal! A five-year contract for Ante Coric at Roma.

14.10 BST: Sime Vrsaljko was on Inter Milan, Lazio and Manchester United’s radar but he looks to be staying put at Atletico Madrid. “If you’d told me at the start of the season that in May I would be second in the league, with a Europa League medal, with no more injury problems and an extended contract, I would never have believed it,” Vrsaljko told Sportske Novosti. “I seriously thought that could indicate I needed a change of scenery.

“Fortunately everything changed, the club gave me a lot of confidence, refused important offers and never even considered talking about a transfer.

“They extended my contract and clearly showed they have faith in me, so I’m satisfied with every situation here at Atletico right now.”

13.57 BST: Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti is in contract negotiations with the club and had been linked with an exit but his latest comments to L’Equipe should allay fans’ fears: “I’m still under contract at the moment. So for me to leave, either they throw me out the door or I decide to leave. I’m at a club that allowed me to realise my dream of playing there”

13.18 BST: Leicester City are in advanced talks with Jamie Vardy over a new deal, sources close to the club have told ESPN FC. 

12.48 BST: When David Ornstein tweets Arsenal transfer news, the people listen …

12.46 BST: Gareth Bale remains headline news and The Times have weighed in on his situation at Real Madrid. Their report claims he’s set for talks with the Madrid hierarchy and although Manchester United are keen, sorting such a move looks very complicated.

12.42 BST: Carlo Ancelotti wants to take right-back Achraf Hakimi and striker Borja Mayoral from former club Real Madrid to Napoli, according to reports. 

12.08 BST: Buried away towards the bottom of this piece in The Sun is an interesting tidbit from Neil Ashton. Manchester United are said to be interested in Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish as one for the future.

12.03 BST: Julian Draxler has been speaking about Thomas Tuchel’s arrival at PSG and Transfer Talk isn’t quite ready to label it a ringing endorsement. On his role at the club under Tuchel, Draxler said: “Good question. I’ve got a new head coach. I don’t know him. I’ve spoken to a few teammates. His knowledge is top. Some like him, as a person, more than others.”

11.50 BST: Lazio defender Stefan de Vrij is off to Inter Milan on a free transfer. The centre-back is out of contract next month and said: “I think I can develop even further at Inter. I can’t wait to get started.”

11.45 BST: Bold claim from the Manchester Evening News: Jose Mourinho is counting on Anthony Martial for next season and the player himself has not asked to leave. It’s also suggested Ryan Sessegnon was a target until he won the Championship playoff final with Fulham.

11.41 BST: Monterrey in Mexico are keen on Everton’s Ramiro Funes Mori, but the Merseysiders are looking to recoup as much of the £9.5m they paid for him as possible, according to The Liverpool Echo.

11.17 BST: Tancredi reckons Roma will push for big, big money if Liverpool want their Loris Karius replacement:

11.00 BST: Everton defender Ashley Williams doesn’t seem too sure on his future. He fell out of favour towards the end of the season and ahead of Wales’ clash with Mexico, he said: “It’s always difficult not being involved and you want to play because playing a game is that bit harder. But what can you do?”

10.38 BST: (See 08.23) Sokratis Papastathopoulos looks to be heading to Arsenal. Reports in Germany claimed the Borussia Dortmund man was on his way and now The Independent claim he’s set to be Unai Emery’s first signing. 

10.35 BST: Napoli’s Lorenzo Insigne has told Corriere dello Sport that new boss Carlo Ancelotti has spoken to Marek Hamsik upon replacing Maurizio Sarri. Hamsik has been linked with a move to China and Insigne said: “I know Ancelotti called him, but I don’t know what they said. Marek’s farewell would be bad news for everyone involved with Napoli, because he’s been a Neapolitan for 10 years.”

10.24 BST: Curious one, this. Yerry Mina has barely been at Barcelona five minutes yet there had been talk he could leave this summer. His uncle has set the record straight to Marca, though, and has laughed off the claims.

10.21 BST: Where is John Terry off to? The former Chelsea defender missed out on promotion at the weekend as Aston Villa lost the playoff final to Fulham. He reportedly said to his teammates: “Keep in touch,” after the game, which suggests he could be on the way out at Villa Park.

09.48 BST: Sticking with Gazzetta, and they reckon Juventus left-back Alex Sandro has a big decision to make. Either he can sign new terms at Juve or choose between Paris Saint-Germain or Manchester United.

09.38 BST: Marouane Fellaini and Memphis Depay to AC Milan? The Gazzetta dello Sport believe Fellaini and former Manchester United teammate Depay would still consider moving to Milan even if the Serie A giants are denied entry to the Europa League. Step this way for why Milan could miss out.

09.38 BST: Ante Coric is closing in on a move to Roma from Dinamo Zagreb for around €8m, according to reports in Italy.

09.35 BST: Quick line from Jacob Steinberg at the Guardian. Could we see some developments at West Ham in the coming days?

09.23 BST: Bayern are prepared to let midfielders Thiago Alcantara and Arturo Vidal leave if they receive a decent offer, say kicker. Vidal has previously been linked with Man United and Chelsea, while Spain international Thiago was the first player signed by Pep Guardiola in 2013 at Bayern from his former club Barcelona — perhaps a move to City is on the cards?

09.15 BST: Reports in Spain suggest that Manchester United are set to open talks with Real Betis over a potential deal for midfielder Andreas Pereira, who has little chance of nailing down a spot under Jose Mourinho.

08.57 BST: Swedish publication Expressen report that Arsenal will be making a £50m bid for RB Leipzig and Sweden midfielder Emil Forsberg in the coming days. He’s a good young player, but that could be all of new coach Unai Emery’s transfer budget in one go!

08.46 BST: Could be a big blow for Carlo… Napoli captain Marek Hamsik has confirmed he has offers to leave the club this summer.

“It’s not at all definite yet [that I will leave]. I’ve got another three years on my contract with Napoli and everything will be decided in the coming weeks, whether I stay or go,” he said. “11 years is a part of your life and Naples has become my second home these years. I’ve not decided yet. Everything’s still possible. As things stand, I am a Napoli players. Ancelotti has called me. There is a possibility [of going to China] and I’m tempted.”

08.30 BST: Kicker also suggest the Sokratis sale might lead to some arrivals too:

– Marius Wolf from Eintracht Frankfurt, activating a clause of around €5m in the versatile 23-year-old’s contract.
– Werder Bremen’s Thomas Delaney, with a fee of €25m mooted for the Denmark international midfielder before the World Cup.
– Mainz’s central defender Abdou Diallo (22), also valued at around €25m but also of interest to Arsenal.

08.23 BST: Sokratis Papastathopoulos will leave Borussia Dortmund for Arsenal according to kicker, with the Gunners beating off competition from a host of Premier League clubs for the Greece international. Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United were also reportedly eyeing a move for the central defender who is under contract until 2019, while kicker report that a fee of between €15-20m still needs to be hammered out.

08.10 BST: Sampdoria winger Ivan Strinic has revealed he has signed for AC Milan on a three-year contract, but that it will be announced after the World Cup. He moves on a free transfer with his contract expiring. 

08.00 BST: It’s not quite the end of May but already the transfer window is almost two weeks old. Stay with us for the latest.

PAPER TALK (By Matt Stanger)

Liverpool step up keeper search

It’s impossible not to feel sorry for Loris Karius after his horror show in the Champions League final, but his costly errors have left Liverpool searching for a new goalkeeper. The Daily Mirror says Jurgen Klopp won’t get rid of the 24-year-old, but he likely will have to accept a place on the bench with Simon Mignolet set to depart the club.

Roma shotstopper Alisson and Atletico Madrid’s Jan Oblak head Liverpool’s list of potential replacements, but both could cost around the £80m mark.

Meanwhile, La Repubblica claims the Reds have made inquiries for AC Milan keeper Gianluigi Donnarumma. The 19-year-old looked to be heading for the exit door at the San Siro last summer, but he eventually extended his contract until 2021.

Man City on Mbappe radar

Manchester City are on red alert to swoop for Kylian Mbappe if Paris Saint-Germain’s permanent move for the youngster is dashed by a Financial Fair Play charge.

According to the Manchester Evening News, UEFA are ready to act on PSG’s astronomical spending, which could cause the 19-year-old’s £127m transfer to collapse.

If that happens, City are primed to step in, despite already planning to shell out £130m on Napoli midfielder Jorginho and Leicester’s Riyad MahrezNeymar has also spoken of his desire to play for Pep Guardiola, but it’s thought City would prefer to sign Mbappe over the Brazilian.

Man United eye Milinkovic-Savic

Mourinho has responded to reports that Marouane Fellaini won’t be renewing his contract at Manchester United by stepping up his interest in Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, reports The Metro.

United have made a £96m opening offer for the Serbian star, who bagged 12 goals and three assists in 35 Serie A appearances to fire Lazio to within touching distance of the Champions League. At 6-foot-3, Milinkovic-Savic would make an ideal replacement for Fellaini, allowing Mourinho to play a direct style with a central target man.

Barcelona and Juventus also are tracking the 23-year-old, but it’s believed his close relationship with compatriot Nemanja Matic has put United in pole position.


Nabil Fekir has distanced himself from links to Liverpool, saying he is relaxed about making a decision on his future. The Independent reports on an interview the 24-year-old gave in France in which he said, “I’m not close to the Reds. There are talks with clubs. I will take time to reflect on things.”

— RB Leipzig hope to complete a permanent deal for Ademola Lookman following his impressive loan spell in the Bundesliga, reports the Liverpool Echo. The winger claimed five goals and four assists in 11 appearances after moving from Everton in January.

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