Juve join race for Gravenberch
Juventus are interested in signing Ajax's highly-rated midfielder Ryan Gravenberch, the Daily Mail reports. With Manchester United also interested in the 18-year-old, who has been likened to Paul Pogba, Gravenberch could be the subject of a bidding war come the summer as clubs across Europe look to land the player after he broke into the Ajax first team. Gravenberch’s agent is Mino Raiola.
Paper Round’s view: The man who represents Pogba, Erling Haaland and Matthijs de Ligt – to name but a few – knows he has another star on his books, so Raiola will be sure to get the best deal for all parties when the time comes for Gravenberch to move on. The agent has dealt with Juve and United plenty in recent years, overseeing De Ligt’s move to the Italian champions as well as securing Pogba’s return to Old Trafford. No doubt he’ll enjoy working out the terms and eventual location for his next superstar client.
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Grealish set for another start
After impressing against Belgium, Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish is in line for his third straight England start in Wednesday’s Nations League dead rubber against Iceland, the Mirror reports. Grealish was the one bright note of England’s 2-0 defeat in Belgium on Sunday, and he will get another chance from the off, capping off an international break which has seen manager Gareth Southgate perform a U-turn on the Villa star's prospects at international level.
Paper Round’s view: In an area packed with talent, Grealish is doing all he can to force his way into Southgate’s Euro 2020 plans next summer. Should he stay fit and in this form he will surely make the plane at the very least, but what role he plays exactly remains to be seen. Either way, Grealish is the man of the moment, and Villa will hope he isn’t too tired when returning this week as the club look to build on their impressive start to the season.
The price of Rice
Chelsea could drum up the money for Declan Rice by offloading five unwanted players in the January transfer window, the Express reports. West Ham and England midfielder Rice could cost Chelsea upwards of £80m, a fee the club were unwilling to meet over the summer, but the Blues could collect near that amount if they sold Antonio Rudiger, Emerson Palmieri, Danny Drinkwater, Olivier Giroud and Tiemoue Bakayoko, based on the quintet’s current value. Bakayoko could join Napoli permanently for £16m.
Raheem Sterling of Manchester City battles for possession with Declan Rice of West Ham United
Image credit: Getty Images
Paper Round’s view: Speculative, but after a summer of spending it could be a January where Chelsea offload several players who find themselves further down the pecking order now Frank Lampard is using his new recruits more and more regularly. Giroud may want more game-time elsewhere, but then again Didier Deschamps has never baulked at calling him up for France, so maybe he’ll sit tight.
Barca want to extend Dembele deal
Barcelona are looking at extending Ousmane Dembele’s contract beyond 2022, the Daily Mail reports, although the forward wants to think about his future before committing to the club. Dembele had started the season out of Ronald Koeman’s first-choice XI, but an injury to Ansu Fati could see the Frenchman play a more prominent role in the coming months, and now Barca are keen to tie him down following interest from Manchester United over the summer.
Paper Round’s view: Perhaps a wise move from Barca, who will not want the player to leave for free in 2022, while if he goes on to have an impressive spell in Ansu’s absence it would enable them to add to his asking price next summer – but that would only be strengthened if they ensure he does not have just 12 months remaining on his current deal.