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Manchester United agree deal to sign Wan-Bissaka for initial £45m fee

Wed, 06/26/2019 - 13:13
• United able to keep 20% sell-on clause for Wilfried Zaha
• Ole Gunnar Solskjær keen to make further signings

Manchester United are set to sign Aaron Wan-Bissaka for £45m from Crystal Palace with the manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjær, adding a second signing who fits his desired profile of a young player with potential.

The 21-year-old right-back is expected to join imminently in a deal that with add-ons may push the final price to around £50m. Solskjær has already added Daniel James, also 21, to his squad, the winger being bought from Swansea City for £15m this month.

Related: Transfer window 2019 – every summer deal from Europe's top five leagues

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Super-agent Mino Raiola is a player’s dream and a manager’s nightmare | Richard Williams

Mon, 06/24/2019 - 15:16
The middleman has brokered some of football’s biggest transfers but his tactics have made him one of the game’s most controversial figures

One morning in late 1992, at Ajax’s old training ground, Bryan Roy arrived to clear out his locker and say his goodbyes. After four years with his hometown club, he was on his way from Amsterdam to join Foggia in the first of Mino Raiola’s many significant transnational deals between football clubs. The previous evening, when Ajax had played Feyenoord, a fan held up a hand-lettered placard. “Bryan bedankt,” it said. Thanks, Bryan.

Not always have football fans expressed such gratitude on the departure of one of Raiola’s clients. This summer, depending on how things work out, Manchester United’s supporters are unlikely to send Paul Pogba on his way with warm wishes for a successful future in Madrid or Turin. The prospect of that £100m-plus deal became more likely last week when, during a promotional visit to Japan, the French midfielder volunteered his readiness to accept a “new challenge” away from Old Trafford. Some might think that helping Ole Gunnar Solskjær to rescue a great club from the doldrums represents enough of a challenge for anyone, but that would not be Raiola’s way.

Related: Paul Pogba left exposed by Mino Raiola’s war of words with Pep Guardiola | Daniel Taylor

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Manchester United meet Crystal Palace to try to seal Wan-Bissaka deal

Mon, 06/24/2019 - 10:49
• Monday meeting follows improved offer at the weekend
• Palace will push for removal of Zaha sell-on clause in deal

Manchester United and Crystal Palace officials will meet on Monday afternoon with a view to thrashing out the finer details of a deal to take Aaron Wan-Bissaka to Old Trafford after an improved bid was tabled over the weekend.

Talks between the clubs appeared to have broken down late last week with United’s offers having fallen well short of Palace’s valuation of the England Under-21 defender. The Palace chairman, Steve Parish, who is under no real pressure to sell, has consistently sought to raise a guaranteed £50m for an academy graduate who excelled while making 39 appearances over his first full season in the senior set-up last term, and that stance has not shifted.

Related: Manchester United and the mystery of the missing director of football | Jacob Steinberg

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Manchester United and the mystery of the missing director of football | Jacob Steinberg

Sun, 06/23/2019 - 12:50
Manchester United have been looking at a director of football for some time now but nothing has happened. No wonder players are thinking twice about joining

Spare a thought for Ed Woodward. As if Paul Pogba issuing a come-and-get-me plea so unsubtle he might as well have jumped out of a cake in the shape of the Bernabéu wasn’t distracting enough, now there are claims that Manchester United’s executive vice-chairman is having trouble with an unruly board member pushing for Steve Walsh to fill the director of football role at Old Trafford.

Related: Manchester United’s ‘culture’ is overrated. Busby and Ferguson swam against the tide | Barney Ronay

Related: Liverpool and City make X-rated fees normal in scary pursuit of perfection | Paul Wilson

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Liverpool and City make X-rated fees normal in scary pursuit of perfection | Paul Wilson

Sat, 06/22/2019 - 12:00

Reds were ahead of the curve with £75m Virgil van Dijk transfer but champions could trump that for Harry Maguire as a duopoly emerges in the Premier League

There are weeks of the transfer window still to go, an opportunity to keep spending money stretching ahead of Premier League clubs like the seemingly endless summer holidays of schoolchild memory, yet it is already clear that the prices being quoted are not only adult but in some cases X-rated.

It was said when Virgil van Dijk joined Liverpool for £75m that in a short space of time the fee would look a bargain, and that time has now arrived. If Manchester City succeed in persuading Harry Maguire to reject Manchester United’s overtures and sign for the champions instead, the price Leicester will ask is likely to match or even exceed what Liverpool paid for Van Dijk.

Related: Inter keen to sign Romelu Lukaku but need to sell Mauro Icardi first

United supporters will be disappointed the transfer window has arrived without a director of football

Related: Manchester United close to Aaron Wan-Bissaka deal with Crystal Palace

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Manchester United’s ‘culture’ is overrated. Busby and Ferguson swam against the tide | Barney Ronay

Sat, 06/22/2019 - 08:15

Another summer of rebuilding appears under way at Old Trafford but attempts to recreate the philosophies and glories of previous eras look doomed to fail

There was an interesting programme on BBC Radio 4 this week about the notorious Portuguese man o’ war jellyfish. The man o’ war is of course the alpha of the jellyfish world, the big swinging tentacle of the deep ocean trench, not to mention the only jellyfish most people have heard of besides the ones that appear on English beaches in spring looking sad and dead and reproachful, surrounded by bottle tops and cigarette butts.

Except it turns out the man o’ war isn’t a jellyfish at all. It is instead a kind of co-operative, a fusion of many small lifeforms into one large, successful stinging thing. The overall effect is a high-functioning mini-society of cells and organs and venomous pincers, the marine equivalent of a furiously angry rolling maul in a 1980s rugby union international, all eye-gouges and V-signs and furious Scottish oaths. In the programme the man o’ war was presented as a successful quirk of evolution, the survival of the collective as opposed to the individual, sustained by that shared culture and purpose. And also as a metaphor for modern city life with its many diverse, interlinked, self-sustaining parts.

Related: Manchester United should sell Paul Pogba even if they make a loss | Paul Wilson

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Inter keen to sign Romelu Lukaku but need to sell Mauro Icardi first

Fri, 06/21/2019 - 12:31
• Inter hope to raise £60m from Icardi sale
• Antonio Conte wanted to sign Lukaku while at Chelsea

Internazionale would like to sign the Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku this summer but would have to offload Mauro Icardi first to have any chance of financing the deal.

Related: Transfer window 2019 – every summer deal from Europe's top five leagues

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Manchester United close to Wan-Bissaka deal with Crystal Palace

Thu, 06/20/2019 - 16:22
• Palace want at least £50m for England Under-21 right-back
• Aidy Boothroyd says player’s head turned by United interest

Aidy Boothroyd believes Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s head has been turned by Manchester United, with the club close to agreeing a deal for the Crystal Palace defender.

United and Palace officials have been in talks since the weekend over a fee for the England Under-21 right-back, with his boyhood club wanting at least £50m guaranteed for the 21-year-old. Palace rejected United’s first offer last month but progress has been made on the terms in recent days. Palace also want United to remove the sell-on clause that was part of the deal that took Wilfried Zaha back to Palace in January 2015.

Related: Manchester United should sell Paul Pogba even if they make a loss | Paul Wilson

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Manchester United should sell Paul Pogba even if they make a loss | Paul Wilson

Wed, 06/19/2019 - 11:08
Talk of increasing the French midfielder’s wages to ensure he stays at Old Trafford is silly and misses the point

Manchester United should not bother waiting for an astronomical offer for Paul Pogba, whatever Ed Woodward seems to be saying. If any reasonable bid comes in they should accept it, because the time has come to sell if a long-running story is not to end up running into next season.

We have all heard far too much already about the French player’s hopes and desires, and his club’s determination to keep hold of him rather than lose face by admitting they cannot offer the level of football he craves. Pogba has had his moments in a United shirt but he has not been the sort of stellar performer who would leave a gaping hole, so it would surely be better to accept the inevitable and get some business done rather than continue to pretend this stormy marriage is somehow going to sail into a serene and productive future.

Related: Paul Pogba alerts Real Madrid with talk of ‘time to have a new challenge’

Related: Who should Manchester United sign if Paul Pogba leaves?

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Juan Mata agrees three-year deal to stay at Manchester United

Tue, 06/18/2019 - 19:39

• Spaniard’s contract was set to expire on 30 June
• Salary similar but length a step up from one-year offer

Juan Mata has reached an agreement on a new contract tieing him to Manchester United for the next three years. The deal will run until the Spaniard is 34, with the intention of him remaining at the club after he retires as a player.

Related: Who should Manchester United sign if Paul Pogba leaves?

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Who should Manchester United sign if Paul Pogba leaves?

Tue, 06/18/2019 - 18:07

Paul Pogba says this summer could be ‘a good time for a challenge somewhere else’, but who should take his place?

By Martin Laurence for WhoScored

Manchester United need to start planning for life without Paul Pogba. When asked about his future this week, Pogba said it could be “a good time for a new challenge somewhere else”.

When it comes to transfers, Ole Gunnar Solskjær has made it clear he wants the club to move away from the model that has failed in recent years. The manager wants to bring in young, hungry players whose wage demands will not break the bank. So, who could fill the void if Pogba leaves?

Related: The top transfer targets in action at the Copa América

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Manchester United fans top list of arrests involving racism as a factor

Tue, 06/18/2019 - 00:01
• 27 supporters at Old Trafford fulfilled category from 2014-18
• Club says percentage of fanbase is ‘minuscule’

Manchester United supporters have been involved in more football-related arrests where racism was an aggravating factor or feature than any other club in England in the four seasons to 2017-18, data from the Home Office shows.

Data released under a Freedom of Information request by the Press Association shows that 27 individuals recorded as United fans by police were arrested during the seasons 2014-15 to 2017-18.

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'It could be a good time for a new challenge': Pogba hints at move from Manchester United – video

Sun, 06/16/2019 - 12:33

Manchester United midfielder and former world record signing Paul Pogba says the time may have come for a move away from the Premier League club. The Frenchman told reporters in Tokyo that now 'could be a good time to have a new challenge somewhere else'.

The 26-year-old, who moved to Old Trafford from Juventus for a then-world record transfer fee of £89.3m in 2016, has been linked with a possible move to Real Madrid to work with Zinedine Zidane, or with a return to his former club Juventus.

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Paul Pogba: ‘It could be a good time to have a new challenge’

Sun, 06/16/2019 - 10:47
• Manchester United midfielder suggests he wants transfer
• Pogba has been linked with Real Madrid and Juventus

Paul Pogba suggested on Sunday that he could be open to a move away from Manchester United, telling reporters in Tokyo that now “could be a good time to have a new challenge somewhere else”.

The midfielder is wanted by Real Madrid, where he would work with Zinedine Zidane, and by his former club Juventus.

Related: Juventus tell Manchester United they are interested in signing Paul Pogba

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West Ham fear missing out to Valencia in race for Celta Vigo’s Maxi Gómez

Sat, 06/15/2019 - 20:57
• 22-year-old striker has £45m release clause in contract
• West Ham tell Manchester United Issa Diop is not for sale

West Ham face an uphill battle to convince Maxi Gómez to choose them over Valencia after lodging a £25m bid for the Celta Vigo striker.

Manuel Pellegrini is determined to continue improving his squad after signing Pablo Fornals from Villarreal on Friday and has long been an admirer of Gómez. However, West Ham fear they will miss out on the Uruguayan to Valencia, who can offer the 22-year-old Champions League football.

Related: Manchester United step up Wan-Bissaka chase with fresh talks over transfer

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Manchester United step up Wan-Bissaka chase with fresh talks over transfer

Sat, 06/15/2019 - 10:11
• Palace may try to get Zaha sell-on clause removed in deal
• Atalanta’s Timothy Castagne a possible replacement

Manchester United are holding further talks with Crystal Palace this weekend aimed at agreeing a fee for Aaron Wan-Bissaka after the player indicated his preference would be a summer move to Old Trafford.

An opening bid for the England Under-21 international that would have been worth in excess of £40m was rejected by the south London club earlier this month, but United remain intent upon securing Wan-Bissaka as a key component in a revamp of their back-line. The 21-year-old is under contract until 2022 and Palace had no great desire to sell, but the youth-team graduate has made clear to his current employers that he would be keen to seize what he considers might be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Related: The rise of Aaron Wan-Bissaka: ‘A lot of the time I can’t get my head around it’

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Premier League fixtures 2019-20: Manchester United host Chelsea on opening weekend

Thu, 06/13/2019 - 09:14

• Manchester City start the defence of their title at West Ham
• Liverpool play opening match of season at home to Norwich

Manchester City will start the defence of their Premier League title at West Ham. The 2019-20 fixtures, announced on Thursday morning, handed Pep Guardiola’s team an opening match at a venue which has proved to be productive for them since 2017.

City, who have won successive Premier League titles, have picked up three points in east London in the last three seasons – scoring four goals on each occasion.

Related: Football transfer rumours: Nicolas Pépé to Manchester United?

Announce 2019/20 #PLfixtures

Full list https://t.co/iQKSNaf596#PremierLeaguefixtures pic.twitter.com/dKBinVJGV9

Liverpool v Manchester City, 9 November

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Daniel James’s exceptional pace will benefit United, says Solskjær

Wed, 06/12/2019 - 16:20
• United confirm signing of 21-year-old on five-year deal
• James says it is ‘perfect club’ to continue his development

Ole Gunnar Solskjær has said Daniel James’ “exceptional pace and work ethic” was one of the reasons Manchester United wanted to sign the 21-year-old from Swansea.

Related: Daniel James joins Manchester United a huge prospect but with work to do

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Daniel James joins Manchester United a huge prospect but with work to do

Tue, 06/11/2019 - 10:00
Flying forward was devastated when a move to Leeds collapsed but a remarkable FA Cup goal for Swansea changed everything

Graham Potter is not the sort to get carried away but as the questions about Daniel James kept coming, and the realisation that everyone had witnessed something special started to sink in, even Swansea’s manager was sounding like an excited supporter. “There were a few instances, not just the goal,” said Potter, smiling, almost laughing, “and it’s just off-your-seat stuff, like ‘wow’.”

It was February, FA Cup fifth-round day, and the best way to describe James that afternoon is unplayable. Three Brentford players were booked for bringing him down and Ezri Konsa received a red card for a professional foul on the Wales international, who was involved in three of Swansea’s four goals. Including that goal: 84yds covered in 8.48sec, with a ball at his feet, and three Brentford players trying, and desperately failing, to keep up.

Related: Ryan Giggs tells Daniel James: ‘Be yourself and you’ll succeed at United’

Related: Manchester United set to seal £15m signing of Swansea winger Daniel James

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Manchester United make £40m bid for Crystal Palace’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Sun, 06/09/2019 - 10:38
• Palace reject offer for highly-rated England Under-21 full-back
• West Ham target Celta Vigo’s Maxi Gómez and Stanislav Lobotka

Manchester United had an opening bid worth in excess of £40m for Aaron Wan-Bissaka rejected by Crystal Palace earlier this month and are weighing up whether to make an improved offer for the England Under-21 international.

Wan-Bissaka enjoyed an eye-catching first full season in senior football last season after graduating through the south London club’s academy, excelling at right-back and making 39 appearances in all competitions. The 21-year-old, originally a winger, is currently preparing for the summer’s junior European Championships in Italy and San Marino, with United having earmarked him as part of a radical revamp of their back-line.

Related: Ryan Sessegnon wants Spurs move and tells Fulham he will not renew contract

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