Madrid is the destination for true Galacticos
Real Madrid are determined to sign Paris Saint-German forward Kylian Mbappe before the transfer window closes on Tuesday. Los Blancos had an initial bid worth €160 million rejected by the Parisians on Tuesday evening, but Real are ready to return with an improved bid. The Telegraph report that PSG would be willing to sell the World Cup winner for €210 million, despite Mbappe's contract rapidly approaching its expiry date next summer. The 22-year-old has told club officials that he wants to leave the French capital, but PSG are holding out for a higher fee due to a sell-on clause agreed with Monaco upon his arrival in 2018.
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Paper Round's view: ...and we thought Lionel Messi to Paris Saint-Germain was going to be the biggest transfer of the summer. Going into this transfer window with one year left on his contract and rumours of failed extension talks with PSG always meant there was a risk that Mbappe could leave this summer. Real Madrid is the youngster's 'dream' destination, but it was just about whether they could meet the asking price. PSG are playing with fire by asking for so much money. There's a huge risk that Real Madrid could just wait until next summer and then Mbappe would walk away from the French capital for free.
PSG to spend Mbappe money on Pogba
Paris Saint-Germain are weighing up a late bid for Paul Pogba in the summer transfer window. The Star reveal that PSG will attempt to lure the Manchester United midfielder to the French capital... if Kylian Mbappe is sold to Real Madrid. The Ligue 1 club will look to reinvest some of the €210 million transfer fee straight away and will try to negotiate a cut-price fee for Pogba, whose current contract at Old Trafford is set to expire next summer. The 28-year-old has already rejected a two-year contract extension at Manchester United, which would have seen him become the highest-paid player in the Premier League club's history.
Paper Round's view: Obviously this transfer is dependant on Mbappe moving to Real Madrid, but it would be an exciting one for PSG. The club will be devastated to lose an exciting player like Mbappe, especially as he is from Paris, but replacing him with another superstar from the French national team is the perfect response to appease the fans and squad. Pogba has been one of the best players in the Premier League so far this season, but he's obviously not completely happy in Manchester. He's not agreed to sign a contract extension... so will United want to risk losing him for free next summer?
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Forget Kane, sign Ronaldo
Manchester City have been forced to change their tactics in the transfer market after Harry Kane announced on Wednesday afternoon that he will be staying at Tottenham Hotspur. The Mirror report that the Premier League champions have "refused to close the door" on a move for Cristiano Ronaldo. The Juventus forward's super-agent Jorge Mendes has been offering his client's services to Europe's top clubs and Manchester City do need a striker. The 36-year-old, who would cost just £25 million, is looking for a two-year contract and a salary of around £46.7 million - which Pep Guardiola's side can "easily afford".
Paper Round's view: Manchester City were rocked by Kane's social media post, which confirmed his decision to stay at Spurs for the time-being. However, the club were never willing to meet Tottenham's £150-million asking price - so it can't have come as a huge surprise. Ronaldo would represent a short-term solution to a long-term problem. The Juve forward might be getting older but his goal-scoring ability is still elite (as shown by his Capocannoniere in Serie A's 2020-21 campaign). It would also set City up to go all in to sign Erling Haaland next summer, who is reportedly available for just £65 million due to a release clause that kicks in during 2022.
Southgate set to name 'enlarged' England squad
Gareth Southgate is preparing to name an "enlarged" England squad for September's World Cup qualifiers against Hungary, Andorra and Poland. The Mirror reveal that Leicester City's Harvey Barnes is being considered as an option following his return from injury. Elsewhere, Danny Ings, Mason Greenwood and Trent Alexander-Arnold could all be in line for recalls after missing out on the Three Lions' Euro 2020 journey. Arsenal duo Ben White and Aaron Ramsdale could return and White's former Brighton teammate Adam Webster is being viewed as a potential shock call-up in defence.
Paper Round's view: It's not too much of a surprise to hear that Southgate is planning to call up a bigger squad when there are three matches being squeezed into one international break. The September break always sees players pull out for various reasons too. It's good to see the likes of Barnes, Greenwood and Alexander-Arnold back in the squad, while Ings' early form at Aston Villa has deserved a call-up. It's time for these kind of players to make their mark - especially with the Qatar 2022 World Cup just over a year away.
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