The battle for Haaland intensifies
Manchester City are set to join Real Madrid in the battle for Erling Haaland's signature. According to the Times, the 20-year-old is wanted by City boss Pep Guardiola as he looks to "reinvigorate his squad". The Borussia Dortmund striker has a £68.7 million release clause in his contract, but it only becomes active in the summer of 2022. The Bundesliga club would demand a fee in excess of Haaland's future clause if they received any bids next summer. Manchester United are also interested in signing the Norwegian, but are likely to prioritise their transfer focus on Haaland's Dortmund teammate Jadon Sancho.
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Paper Round's view: Centre-forward seems to be an issue for Manchester City, so identifying Haaland as a possible summer signing makes complete sense. Sergio Aguero has been a loyal member of the club for nearly a decade now, but he has struggled with injuries in recent years and his current contract is set to expire at the end of the campaign. Gabriel Jesus simply hasn't done enough to prove that he is the rightful heir to Aguero's throne so City need to be scanning the transfer market. While someone like Harry Kane might be ideal due to Guardiola's playing style, completing a deal for Haaland would be a lot easier. It would be nice to see the Dortmund forward move to Manchester and play for a club where his father spent three seasons.
Pogba for Ronaldo?
Juventus are determined to bring Paul Pogba back to the club and the Independent believe that the Italian champions could be willing to offer an incredible player-swap deal to secure his signature. The report states that Juve are ready to offer either Cristiano Ronaldo or Paulo Dybala to Manchester United and want to complete a deal in the January transfer window. The Premier League side would be interested in Ronaldo - who executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has "long coveted" - but have no real enthusiasm for a swap for Dybala. Juventus would allow the 35-year-old forward to leave in order to release his mammoth contract as they finances have limited the much-needed rebuilding job at the club.
Paper Round's view: The Paul Pogba saga continues. It's interesting to read how desperate Juventus are to bring the World Cup winner back to Turin - offering out the great Cristiano Ronaldo and arguably their biggest talent for the future in Paulo Dybala. The strange thing is that United would prefer to take a 35-year-old Ronaldo back to Old Trafford than the superstar that is Dybala. Yes - the next couple of years of Ronaldo would be amazing and he might be the centre-forward poacher that they need right now, but Dybala could be the future of the club. Either way, it's an interesting offer for United...
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Red Bull gives you... an advantage in the transfer market
RB Leipzig are set to pip Arsenal and AC Milan to the signing of Dominik Szoboszlai, according to the Guardian. The highly-rated Hungarian midfielder has impressed for Red Bull Salzburg and his national team over the past 18 months and it recently became public knowledge that he had a €25 million release clause in his contract with the Austrian champions. Szoboszlai decided to join Salzburg's sister-club RB Leipzig, who recently qualified for the knockout stages of the Champions League. The 20-year-old was viewed as Arsenal's number one January transfer target as the Gunners searched for a creative midfielder.
Paper Round's view: This will be a huge blow for Arsenal. The Gunners are desperate for some new faces in midfield and Szoboszlai represented an exciting option that was great value in the current transfer market. Arsenal may now be forced to pursue a move for Houssem Aouar, who Lyon value at around double the fee that Leipzig paid for Szoboszlai. People may say that the 20-year-old midfielder only joined the Bundesliga club due to their links to Red Bull Salzburg, but realistically Leipzig are competing for the German league title and are in the Champions League. The same can't be said for Arsenal and, while Milan are sitting top in Serie A right now, the Italians are also playing in the Europa League this season.
Winks wants first-team football
Tottenham midfielder Harry Winks will meet with club chairman Daniel Levy to discuss the possibility of leaving on loan in the January transfer window. The 24-year-old is feeling frustrated at his lack of playing time so far this season, as he sits behind Tanguy Ndombele, Pierre-Emile Højbjerg and Moussa Sissoko in the pecking order in north London. However, Winks may be told he is not allowed to leave as Spurs would prefer to loan out fellow England international Dele Alli. Both midfielders are looking to book a spot in the Three Lions squad for next summer's European Championships.
Paper Round's view: Jose Mourinho stated it is "impossible" to keep his entire squad happy and he's right. Winks won't be content with his current role, but the club still needs him. Spurs are top of the Premier League and are competing in the Europa League - as well as domestic cup competitions. Additionally, Winks is probably the first-choice option to deputise if any starting midfielder were to suffer an injury. It's the whole point of having a squad really. Of course, the 24-year-old wants to play more league minutes and secure his spot in the England squad, but he will have to prove his worth to Mourinho in training because it doesn't seem like the club will allow him to leave.
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