Odegaard asks to leave Real Madrid
Spanish newspaper Marca reports that Real Madrid’s Martin Odegaard has asked to leave the club. The 22-year-old attacking midfielder has had limited chances this season and he wants to leave on loan. The paper reports that he was the only player considered as a 'signing' last summer when returning from a loan spell with Real Sociedad but he wants to move elsewhere as Zinedine Zidane is not picking him.
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Paper Round’s view: Odegaard showed last season that he is able to create chances and pose an attacking threat in La Liga. At 22, now is the time to either give him a run in the first team, or let him move on to build a career elsewhere. At the very least a loan for the remaining half of the season will give him the time on the pitch to progress and come back improved for next season.
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Ings wants Champions League football
Southampton striker Danny Ings is in no rush to sign a new deal to stay on the south coast, reports the Telegraph. The 28-year-old England international has a contract that runs until 2022, but the club are ready to make him their best-paid player ever in order to keep him. Ings wants to make sure that he is able to move on in the summer as he tries to return to a Champions League club.
Paper Round’s view: Ings has been in decent form this season and after problems with injury he has clearly proven his worth and his reliability. The problem for him is that while he is going to be the best player at somewhere like Southampton, he wouldn’t be good enough to feature regularly for any of the top four sides. If he is content to sit on the sidelines further up the table, and collect trophies that way, then he might be a useful back-up.
Valencia want Torreira
Valencia are reportedly keen to sign Lucas Torreira on loan from Arsenal, the Mirror claims. The Uruguayan midfielder has barely featured at Atletico Madrid so far this season after joining on a temporary deal, and his parent club want him to move somewhere he can get first-team football. Peter Lim’s side are ready to offer him a way out of Atletico for the rest of the season.
Paper Round’s view: At just 24, Torreira’s career seems to be in slight danger of being derailed by his inability to get on the pitch. He can’t afford to let that situation persist and a switch to a weaker Valencia side should get him more opportunities. Otherwise a return to Serie A, where he made his name, might be a sensible move ahead of a permanent transfer in the summer.
United chase Medina
Manchester United are looking to sign Lens’ central defender Facundo Medina. The Argentine international only joined from Talleres in the summer but has impressed in the first half of the season. That could prompt United to offer £11 million for the 21-year-old player, with an offer that the northern French side could keep the player on loan for the rest of the season.
Paper Round’s view: Going from a small South American club to Manchester United, via Lens, in just a year would be a huge step up for Medina, but he appears set for bigger things. Moving him on so quickly would be a risk so letting him stay in France on loan for a little longer would make sense. However should be trying to replace both Victor Lindelof and Harry Maguire as soon as possible.
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Parker's Picks: Wins for Chelsea, Arsenal in NLD; Brentford to hold Liverpool