Liverpool battle United for Botman
Manchester United and Liverpool could face a battle against one another in order to secure the signature of Sven Botman. The 21-year-old Dutch defender joined Lille from Ajax in the summer but he could already be on the move in the summer, with some reports suggesting that he has even agreed a deal that will see him depart. That has been denied, but Liverpool are in the market to secure another defender, reports the Mirror.
Paper Round’s view: Ozan Kabak’s transfer to Liverpool is currently only a loan arrangement, so a permanent deal is not guaranteed. United saw more defensive frailty cost them in the 1-1 draw with West Brom on Sunday night, and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needs to find a partner for Harry Maguire, and potentially even a replacement for the England international.
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Costa set for Brazil switch
Spanish striker Diego Costa is set to return to his birthplace Brazil, with a move to Palmeiras. The 32-year-old striker will earn two million euros a year in Brazil, and can join the Copa Libertadores champions because he left Atletico Madrid when they cancelled his contract. He has yet to play in Brazil after starting his career in Portugal and becoming a Spanish international.
Paper Round’s view: Costa’s threat tailed off rapidly when he returned to Spain, and he seemed to lose his way quickly at Chelsea. He has never played professionally in Brazil, but perhaps going home will help him feel more confident and find the back of the net more regularly. He is only 32, so could have a few more years left in professional football.
Bayern look to Aarons
Bayern Munich continue their squad rebuilding, according to the Daily Mail. They’ve already agreed two deals, with Dayot Upamecano to join from RB Leipzig in the summer, and Omar Richards to move from Reading at the end of the season as well. There are now rumours that they will move for Max Aarons of Norwich City, with the 21-year-old also attracting interest from Barcelona and Manchester United.
Paper Round’s view: Aarons has continued to impress in the Championship, and it looks almost inevitable that he will find his way back into the top flight. It seems as if Bayern are taking the chance to add depth to their squad and add to it from a position of strength, whereas other clubs are struggling to find the cash to bring in any new players.
Burnley eye new ‘keeper
Sean Dyche wants to add a new goalkeeper to his squad to improve the competition for current first choice Nick Pope. The Sun reports that Carlos Joaquim dos Santos is a target, after moving to Benfica B. The 20-year-old American has made his country’s B team national side, and he should be able to qualify for a work permit if a deal is agreed.
Paper Round’s view: With Tom Heaton at Aston Villa and Joe Hart moving onto Spurs, Burnley are without a senior goalkeeper to provide competition to Pope. While Pope has proven himself as an international level stopper, there is no harm in making him work to keep his place, given he is probably able to be complacent with the current lack of real competition.