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Alan 11:05 Fri Feb 9
Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Borussia Dortmund attacking midfielder Christian Pulisic, 19, has refused to rule out a potential move to Manchester United, the club he supported as a child. (Mail)

Leicester's 26-year-old Algeria winger Riyad Mahrez wants his club to guarantee he will be allowed to leave this summer before returning to training. (Times - subscription required)

Arsenal's French striker Alexandre Lacazette is under big pressure at the Emirates and could face a summer exit according to former Gunners player Emmanuel Petit. (Sun)

Mahrez's advisers claim the Foxes had already agreed to let him leave if a big club offered £50m but still rejected a Manchester City bid in January. (Mirror)

France and Monaco forward Thomas Lemar, 22, is not on Liverpool's list of targets for the summer transfer window. (Liverpool Echo)

Germany boss Joachim Low is Real Madrid's preferred option to replace Zinedine Zidane as manager at the end of the season. (Mundo Deportivo - in Spanish)

Former Watford manager Marco Silva is threatening the club with legal action because he is yet to receive compensation after being sacked in January. (Times - subscription required)

Arsenal's 26-year-old midfielder Jack Wilshere will take a pay cut to sign a new deal at the club. (Mail)

Juventus are confident they will sign Liverpool's Germany midfielder Emre Can, 24, when his contract expires in the summer. (Mirror)

Bayern Munich's Poland striker Robert Lewandowski, 29, says rumours of a summer move to Real Madrid "do not interest" him. (Bild - in German)

Leicester and West Ham are keen to sign 21-year-old English forward Patrick Roberts, who is on loan at Celtic from Manchester City. (Sun)

Former Manchester United winger Angel Di Maria, 29, admits he was 'very close' to leaving Paris St. Germain for Barcelona last summer. (Mail)

Barnsley have identified Peterborough United manager Grant McCann as a candidate to replace ex-manager Paul Heckingbottom, who left to take charge at Leeds. (Telegraph)

Former Arsenal and Tottenham defender Sol Campbell has held talks with Oxford United as the League One club look to appoint a new manager. (Mail)

Manchester City's £57m signing of Aymeric Laporte from Athletic Bilbao helped save an eighth-tier French club from financial ruin. (Telegraph)

Ex-Man City striker Valeri Bojinov, 31, has signed a six-month deal with Croatian champions HNK Rijeka. (HNK Rijeka - in Croatian)

Manchester United recorded their biggest financial loss in eight years because of tax reforms introduced by United States President Donald Trump. (Times - subscription required)

Facebook, Google and Netflix will not be submitting bids for the next round of Premier League TV rights. (Guardian)

Best of Thursday's gossip

Liverpool are preparing a second move for Monaco's 22-year-old France midfielder Thomas Lemar, after he turned down a new contract at the Ligue 1 club. (Independent)

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola will not revive his interest in Leicester City's 26-year-old Algeria midfielder Riyad Mahrez in the summer. (Mirror)

Luis Enrique, the former Barcelona boss who has been linked with replacing Antonio Conte at Chelsea, is preparing for a move to England. The 47-year-old does not want to take over until the end of the season. (Telegraph)

Tottenham are interested in signing Watford's 25-year-old French midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure in the summer. (Mail)

Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred has chosen Manchester City as his next club, according to former coach Mircea Lucescu. The 24-year-old Brazil international has also been linked with City's neighbours Manchester United. (Mirror)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Paul Doyle

Sometimes the gossip is all about what’s not going on. And boy, have we got no news for you. Thomas Lemar to Liverpool? No, not happening. Having bid a gazillion pounds for the Monaco schemer a few months ago, the club have reportedly lost interest in him and begun exploring other targets instead. Gareth Bale to Arsenal? Nope, nary a mention anywhere. Makes you wonder, eh? Riyad Mahrez to resume playing for Leicester? Or to be allowed to leave in the summer? Nothing is certain on that front, as the player and his employer appear to be locked into fundamentally different understandings of their relationship. Word is the forward had the impression that he would be allowed to go in January if another club bid more than £50m for him, which Manchester City did, whereas Leicester’s view was nothing of the sort. Common ground is elusive and there’s still no telling how it’ll play out.

Reading between the lines, it’s a mess.

Robert Lewandowski to Real Madrid? Nah, nothing to see here. Actually, maybe there is. “I’m not interested in those rumours; out of respect I don’t want to say anything because this happens every year,” said the Bayern Munich striker this week when asked about the prospect. That’s not quite a denial and, bearing in mind that in the past he has been entirely candid about his intentions, his sudden coyness may in fact be revelatory.

Reading between the lines, it’s on!

But who will be Real Madrid’s manager in the summer? The smart money now appears to be going on Joachim Löw, who may be in the market for a fresh challenge if he wins the World Cup again with Germany. Then again, he may figure he has a cushy gig where he is and can do without the hassle of managing on a day-to-day basis, especially not at the Cirque du Real.

Manchester United are still on the hunt for a reliable centre-back and their sights are narrowing on Lazio’s Stefan de Vrij. The bad news for them, and the good news for the Italian club, is that Chelsea and Liverpool also fancy the Dutchman so there could be a dizzying bidding war when the transfer window re-opens.

Marco Silva is preparing for war of another kind, as the ex-Watford boss is said to be consulting with legal experts to see about getting the lolly he believes he is owed following his sacking at Vicarage Road. Sol Campbell hopes to become the new manager of Oxford United and has held talks about the matter with the League One side. The vacancy created at Barnsley by the defection of Paul Heckingbottom to Leeds, meanwhile, could be filled by Grant McCann, an eventuality that would, of course, then leave a vacancy at Peterborough United.

Leicester are said to have the hots for Patrick Roberts, the slinky forward currently shining at Celtic. But given that the 21-year-old belongs to Manchester City, with whom Leicester do not appear to be on the best of terms, we may be back to talking about things that aren’t going to happen. West Ham are also said to be keen on Roberts but, as we said, he’s 21 so it’s at least 15 years too soon for him to join them.

But perhaps the waters are not, in fact, so choppy between Leicester and Manchester City. Leicester and Mahrez appear to have smoothed out their differences, at least, with reports this morning claiming that the Algeria international has made peace with his employers and declared himself ready to face Manchester City on Saturday.

Football London

'He's like an ox!' - Michail Antonio raves about West Ham newboys Joao Mario & Jordan Hugill

By Kevin Beirne

Joao Mario and Jordan Hugill have already won a new fan in east London following their January moves to West Ham, with Hammers star Michail Antonio singing the praises of the new pair.

Hugill joined in a £10m deadline day transfer from Preston North End, while Mario has arrived from Inter Milan in a loan deal for the rest of the season.

But already they are making their impact felt, with Antonio appearing to be highly impressed by both players' attritubes.

"I'm very impressed with Mario. He's a very technical player with nice flair and his awareness is unbelievable," the reigning Hammer of the Year told the West Ham website.

"I've not trained much with Jordan, but he came on on Saturday and looked like an ox! I've never seen anyone deal with [Brighton defender] Shane Duffy the way he just put him in his place. They are two great signings."

While there have been questions raised about Hugill's ability to make the step up to the Premier League, Antonio believes the 25-year-old has the talent to cut it with the big boys.

"It's one of those things where people talk about the Championship as if it is a foreign world, but there are very technical players down there who have quality," Antonio said.

"It's a very physical game so being able to deal with the physicality down there, you can definitely deal with the physicality of the Prem.

"It's just about whether you are technically good and can keep up with the speed of the game. You can learn that in no time. As soon as you are down on the training ground, doing your training and learning, you are going to pick up speed and be a Premier League player in no time."


West Ham set to battle Leicester to sign Manchester City youngster Patrick Roberts

Hammers hoping to land to midfielder, currently on loan at Celtic, in a £15million deal, but will face stiff competition

Exclusive by Mike McGrath

WEST HAM are set to step up their rivalry with Leicester by going for Patrick Roberts.

The Hammers failed to land Islam Slimani during the January transfer window and there is tension at boardroom level between the clubs.

But they will go head-to-head for Manchester City forward Roberts this summer in a £15million deal.

Claude Puel wanted the 21-year-old, on loan at Celtic, as a makeweight in the deal for Riyad Mahrez that City walked away from over the price.

The Foxes boss still wants the ex-Fulham star in the summer as he looks certain to lose Mahrez eventually.

But West Ham will compete for Roberts too and are ready to firm up their long-term interest after missing out on him when he went to City.

Roberts was also on David Moyes’ radar this January but Leicester moved first to try to get him as part of the Mahrez package.

The youngster moved from Craven Cottage two-and-a-half years ago and made three appearances before he was loaned to Celtic Park.

He is now in his third campaign with the Scottish giants and has attracted interest from French side Nice before Premier League clubs started tracking him.

Roberts arrived before the Pep Guardiola era at the Etihad and the Spaniard is expected to allow the winger to leave for the right price at the end of the season.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Texas Iron 6:38 Fri Feb 9
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Mike Oxsaw 2:21 Fri Feb 9
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Shukran, Al An.

Thanks Alan 12:38 Fri Feb 9
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Bill green 11:32 Fri Feb 9

tazman 12:05 Fri Feb 9
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Guardian Rumour Mill

Paul Doyle, rubbing salt into the wound.

West Ham are also said to be keen on Roberts but, as we said, hes 21 so its at least 15 years too soon for him to join them. Ha ha.
Thanks Alan.

Eddie B 11:45 Fri Feb 9
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Alan, thanks.

bill green 11:32 Fri Feb 9
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
thanks Alan

Alan 11:12 Fri Feb 9
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Guardian Rumour Mill added

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