United may sell to buy Carmo
Manchester United are looking at recruiting a new defender in the shape of Braga’s David Carmo. The 6 foot 5 inch player has impressed, and at 21 fits the age profile for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. A move could be made in January, but it may depend on raising funds and making room in the squad. If Phil Jones or Marcos Rojo are sold then he could be brought in from Portugal.
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Paper Round’s view: Carmo is physically imposing, and some backbone in central defence is needed given Harry Maguire has lost his focus and Victor Lindelof is still very callow despite his age. Whether Carmo would be a sensible replacement is unclear, but it would be a surprise if he were any worse than United’s current option.
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Jimenez confirms Juve and United talks
Wolves striker Raul Jimenez has confirmed that there were offers from Juventus and from Manchester United in the past, but an agreement was not reached with the Midlands club for his signature. The 29-year-old has been regularly linked with a move to Old Trafford, but has signed a four-year deal to extend his stay with his current club - though Jimenez does not rule out a move at some point, reports the Mirror.
Paper Round’s view: Given his age, a move to a top European club now seems unlikely. Given his talent, that seems something of a shame as he is a regular goalscorer who offers a straightforward attacking option to his team. Having said that, if he is content with Wolves and life in the Premier League, then there is no great reason for him to make the switch.
Arsenal keep interest in Aouar
Houssem Aouar remains on Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta’s shortlist as he prepares for the summer’s transfer window. Arteta had wanted the 22-year-old Lyon midfielder to start the current season alongside Thomas Partey but the London club did not meet Lyon’s asking price. There is also competition from Juventus, reports the Mail, which could lead to problems.
Paper Round’s view: If Aouar continues his form from last season then it won’t just be Arsenal and Juventus who are keen. At 22 he already looks hugely talented and his potential will attract attention from across Europe. Should he be available for £40-50 million next season then it seems inevitable that he will be snapped up, giving Arsenal a tough task.
Ramos contract running out
Real Madrid central defender Sergio Ramos is close to the end of his contract in the capital. The 34-year-old captain is free to negotiate a pre-contract with clubs outside Spain from the turn of the year, but talks are expected to be concluded positively between Ramos and Real. Despite his age, Ramos is in exceptional form and wants to end his career with the club, according to Spanish newspaper Marca.
Paper Round’s view: Ramos has been perhaps the best purchase Real Madrid have made over the course of the last 20 years. Perhaps only Cristiano Ronaldo has offered more consistency and with more vital interventions. Ramos, though, does not appear to have lost a step on the pitch right now and keeping him for at least another year would help Zinedine Zidane.
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