Arsenal target Julian Draxler, Schalke's teen playmaker

May 9, 2013
Bill Mann

Borussia Dortmund want him too – but the young German is said to prefer a move to England

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SO, ARSENE WENGER is now the Premier League's longest serving manager with 17 years on the clock at Arsenal. Yet the Nutty Professor has failed to fill the trophy cabinet since 2005. Could Julian Draxler help change all that next season?

The 19-year-old Schalke playmaker came to Wenger's attention when the two clubs met in this season's Champions League group stage, and ever since Draxler has been in the Frenchman's eyeline.

Now Talksport claims that the race to sign the midfield maestro is hotting up, with Borussia Dortmund making "several attempts" to nab Draxler from under the noses of Arsenal. "For some time, Borussia Dortmund have been working on [luring] Draxler," admitted Schalke general manager Horst Heldt. "It is something that does not surprise me given that Julian is one of the best players in the Bundesliga."

Talksport says that Draxler, capped four times by Germany, is a firm favourite of Wenger's and it's believed the youngster would prefer a move to England than joining one of Schalke's fierce rivals.

Spanish rag AS reckons that Spurs are about to make a move for Barcelona midfielder Sergi Roberto, regardless of whether they qualify for next season's Champions League.

With Barcelona breaking up faster than the Bank Holiday weather, the 21-year-old Roberto is allegedly keen to make a fresh start and that is what Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas is prepared to offer the Spanish Under 21 international.

AS says that Roberto, who came up through the Barcelona youth system, wants regular game time and Villas-Boas is happy to accommodate his wish next season.

The Metro says that Spurs and Liverpool have both been blown out by Ajax defender Toby Alderweireld.

The 24-year-old centre-back made it clear earlier in the year that this season would be his last in Holland, and he was tipped to make the move across the North Sea to England. But the Metro says Roma have "jumped the queue and agreed a deal" for a player widely regarded as one of the best defenders in the game.

Capped 23 times by Belgium, the strapping six foot Alderweireld was being tracked by Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers, who is said to be "furious" at missing out to the Italian club.

Finally, the news of Alex Ferguson's retirement has caused the Daily Mail to go OTT with claims about what might happen at Manchester United. The paper says that striker Wayne Rooney "told Ferguson two weeks ago that he wants a fresh start" – one well away from Old Trafford.

However, Rooney might have a rethink if David Moyes takes over the helm. Rooney knows Moyes from his time at Everton and it's claimed he has a good relationship with the 50-year-old Scot.

The Mail also claims that outgoing United chief executive David Gill has been in Spain talking to Jorge Mendes, the Portuguese super-agent who represents Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, and that a deal is close to being agreed that will see the Portuguese superstar return to the club he left for Real in 2009.

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