Man Utd target McGinn
Manchester United have put Aston Villa midfielder John McGinn on their summer shortlist, the Telegraph reports. United are working on a list of targets to pursue once they have appointed a new manager, and with the midfield viewed as a priority, McGinn is one name under consideration. The Scot has more than two years remaining on his current contract at Villa Park, and this summer will likely be the last window where Villa can get a big fee for the 27-year-old.
Paper Round’s view: McGinn to United has been mooted for ages, and though it feels like years and years ago that Sir Alex Ferguson urged the club to sign the Scotland international, apparently it was only 2019. Valued at around £40m, United will have to decide whether there is better value elsewhere, but McGinn is a top-class player and would certainly improve the side.
I think he wants a favour, Stevie lad – The Warm-Up
Martinez to Everton off
Roberto Martinez’s chances of returning to Everton have taken a blow, the Telegraph reports. Journalist Jason Burt gives a somewhat non-committal and confusing “never say never but Martinez to Everton is off…” on Twitter, but his piece explains that the move is unlikely because the Belgian FA are unwilling to let their head coach simultaneously take charge of Everton and the national team. Martinez is keen for a Premier League return, but also wants to lead Belgium out at the World Cup at the end of the year. Belgium are less keen on this idea after receiving an approach from Everton.
Paper Round’s view: Martinez wants it all, but Belgium aren’t playing the game, and you can’t blame them either. This so-called golden generation of Belgian players will not want their manager distracted, especially as this could be the nation’s final big push for World Cup glory while so many talented players are at - or close to - their peak. If Martinez wants an Everton return so much, he could do Belgium a favour and just leave – that may well boost their World Cup chances anyway.
Arsenal braced for backlash
Arsenal are on the brink of loaning out Pablo Mario, the Mirror reports, with the decision likely to lead to a backlash after they sought to delay Sunday’s match against Tottenham due to a lack of players, a request which was granted by the Premier League. Arsenal have agreed a loan deal with Udinese for the defender, although it remains unclear whether they will have enough squad members to face Liverpool in the League Cup on Thursday, a match which hangs in the balance because of the predicament at Arsenal.
Paper Round’s view: No surprise a backlash is expected, and you have to imagine the Premier League and FA will come down harder on clubs if they willingly let players leave on loan and then claim they cannot fulfil a fixture. It has already been absurd, this could take it to another level.
Everton owner selling up?
Everton owner Farhad Moshiri is considering selling the club and taking a £100m hit in the process, The Sun reports. Fans have protested against the club’s ownership in recent months, with the mood at Goodison Park souring while Rafael Benitez was in charge as manager. Benitez has now gone, and now Moshiri could decide he’s had enough, even if that means accepting an offer of £350m, having invested more than £450m into the club.
Paper Round’s view: This news would probably please Everton fans, so long as any prospective new owners have good intentions. It has been a disasterclass at Everton in recent years, and the recent shambles surrounding Benitez’s appointment and departure potentially tops the lot. A fresh start could be just what the club need.
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