City ready to make Messi move
Spanish newspaper Marca reports that Manchester City are not yet ready to make an offer for Lionel Messi, but are preparing the figures should he let it be known that he is leaving Barcelona. They will face competition from Paris Saint-Germain for his signature, but would be able to offer him a path to MLS after a couple of years, with sister club New York City FC.
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Paper Round’s view: If Messi is keen to experience MLS before he retires, then NYFC would give him the chance to live in one of the most glamorous cities in the world, perhaps with a guaranteed move that PSG - preparing for a Champions League game against Bayern - or any other club would not be able to give him. For now, it appears that he will still elect to stay now that Joan Laporta is president.
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Dawson to sign for West Ham
West Ham looked to have made a desperate signing last summer when they brought in Craig Dawson on loan from Watford, but it appears now that they have got themselves a bargain, claims the Daily Mail. The 30-year-old defender has played 15 league games for the club, triggering a clause that means West Ham will sign him for £2 million, with the player at the heart of their best season in years.
Paper Round’s view: There is still a chance that West Ham will be able to pull off a huge upset and secure Champions League football with a top four finish, and sign Jesse Lingard. If they do that then there could be transformative sums on offer in the transfer window for David Moyes, but he will probably not get better value out of a deal than he did from Dawson’s arrival.
Torreira wants Boca move
The Sun reports that Lucas Torreira wants to end his loan spell at Atletico Madrid and cut ties with Arsenal at the same time, with his father saying that the 25-year-old Uruguayan international wants to return to South America and fulfil a lifelong dream of playing for Boca Juniors. The news comes after the death of the player’s mother from coronavirus.
Paper Round’s view: Torreira looked like a brilliant prospect in his first season at Arsenal but has struggled to settle in the longer term. A loan spell away to Atletico has done little to turn his career around and perhaps leaving Europe is a sensible way forward, and would allow Mikel Arteta to potentially raise a few million to improve the squad this summer.
Solskjaer may keep Lingard
Manchester United did not put a clause in their loan deal with West Ham for midfielder Jesse Lingard to make it a permanent deal, according to the Mirror. The 28-year-old England international has dramatically improved his form over the past few months since arriving at the London Stadium on loan. However, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has the chance to keep him on for next season or use him to raise funds.
Paper Round’s view: Solskjaer has talked up the chances of bringing Lingard back in the summer, and in truth an in-form Lingard is a useful option to have for any squad. However he can only play this well if he’s on the pitch regularly, and United have many better options in their first team, so it makes sense to sell him to raise funds for the summer transfer window - especially as they may need a new goalkeeper.
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