Rashford keen on United stay
Reports emerged on Thursday evening that Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford is wanted by Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain. While representatives of the 24-year-old England international have met with the French side to discuss a move, The Daily Mail reports that Rashford has let it be known to his current club that he is happy where he is.
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Paper Round’s view: Rashford’s career has started to drift just as he was making a name for himself as he campaigned on vital issues. However, he is a footballer first, and if he switches to France then it would be a chance to rediscover playing football away from the pressure of fans and the press who may have taken against him because of his political campaigns.
Xavi wants Aubameyang to remain
The Mirror believes that Barcelona may deny Chelsea the chance to sign Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, because manager Xavi Hernandez would prefer to keep the 33-year-old Gabonese striker ahead of the other potential player to sacrifice, Memphis Depay. The 28-year-old is attracting attention from Juventus, but Spurs are also now keen on the player.
Paper Round’s view: Depay would line up handily alongside Harry Kane and Heung-min Son in a dangerous front three, but he would also be able to play through the middle when Kane is injured or needs time off from first-team action. Chelsea might have to look elsewhere for a striker who could be brought in for a relatively small fee and who knows the Premier League.
Leeds target Wagner
Leeds United are one of several teams in the hunt for Philadelphia Union left-back Kai Wagner, according to The Sun. The 25-year-old German moved to MLS in 2019 and is one of the most highly-rated performers in the league. He could be available for just £2.5 million, and is also wanted by Portuguese side Benfica as well as Croatian side Dinamo Zagreb.
Paper Round’s view: After leaving Wurzburger Kickers six years ago, Wagner has shown his potential and he must be tempted to end his time in a second tier league in order to prove himself in the toughest competitions going. While Croatia might not be the step up he is looking for, both Leeds and Benfica would offer potential stepping stone to a truly glamorous European side.
Umtiti looking for Lyon return
Samuel Umtiti wants to return to his former club Lyon to resuscitate his struggling career. The 28-year-old French central defender has struggled with injuries at Barcelona and has lost his place as a first-choice player. He wants to go back to Ligue 1, but Spanish newspaper Marca reports that his former side are not yet ready to make a move for him.
Paper Round’s view: Any team would be foolish to sign Umtiti, unless the deal was on exceptionally favourable terms. If Barcelona don’t ask for a huge sum and the defender is happy to be paid only when he is fit, then it could be a workable solution, but right now Umtiti is simply too unreliable when it comes to his physical condition, and is probably not worth the risk.
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