Liverpool face Sterling fight, Sneijder, Ronaldo snub Man Utd
Real Madrid want Liverpool winger but he won't displace Ronaldo who, like Sneijder, is going nowhere
Real Madrid's determination to hoover up the best footballing talent in the world shows no signs of abating and next on their list is Liverpool starlet Raheem Sterling, according to the Daily Mirror at least.
The paper notes that the winger has two-and-a-half years left on his Anfield contract, but adds that he is earning a paltry £30,000 a week and that Liverpool have been "dragging their feet" over a new deal for the youngster.
All that has prompted Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti to "put the Liverpool star on top of his hit-list after his stunning form for club and country".
The paper notes that the Spanish giants have cash in the coffers after offloading Angel di Maria, and will not be averse to recruiting from the Premier League after seeing how well Ronaldo and Gareth Bale have fared. But it's good news for Sterling, who can now expect a bumper pay packet whoever he signs a new deal with, as Liverpool will be forced to improve his terms if they are to keep him.
Talking of Cristiano Ronaldo, it seems that he won't be stepping aside even if Sterling arrives at the Bernabeu. The Daily Mail notes that the Portuguese has distanced himself from a reunion with Jose Mourinho at Chelsea, claiming that his relationship with the former Real manager was non-existant.
Now the preening winger has shrugged off talk of a £120m deal to take him back to Old Trafford.
Asked about the talk of a return to Manchester he said: "My future is Madrid. I'm happy this season is going well and my future, I will not speak about [it], it does not make sense."
In a similar vein it seems Wesley Sneijder has decided it's one thing to play in Turkey but quite another to play for a turkey, and has also decided to give Old Trafford a wide berth. According to the Daily Mirror the Dutch ace has "snubbed" Manchester United by rejecting suggestions he could be lured there by Louis van Gaal.
The pair know each other well from their time in the Holland squad but Sneijder has said he's happy to stay in Istanbul. "It's great to hear that Van Gaal is interested in me, he is a footballing genius," said Sneijder of the manager whose side leaked five goals to Leicester on Sunday. "However, I doubt Manchester United could tempt me to leave Galatasaray right now, I don't see it happening. Everything is going well for me in Istanbul and I have settled into life in Turkey and feel at home."
Pressed on whether he might be tempted to give United a try if and when van Gaal restores credibility to the Red Devils, the 30-year-old Sneijder, who was being linked with United in the days of Alex Ferguson, replied: "I don't even know why we keep talking about this... It is very unlikely that any deal will happen."
If Caughtoffside is correct Paris Saint-Germain starlet Adrien Rabiot could "still be on his way to Arsenal" following the collapse of a deal that would have taken him to Roma. Rabiot is in the final year of his current contract with the French champions and the 19-year-old had reportedly been negotiating a move to Italy, but Caughtoffside quotes respected Italian sources as saying the teenager's mother (also his agent) has put her foot down. It appears she has turned against Roma because they will not meet her son's wage demands and instead "she is keen for him to enter negotiations with the Gunners". Although Inter Milan and Juventus were both linked to Rabiot earlier in the summer it's believed the France Under-21 international is now likely to move to the Emirates next year.
In other news the Daily Express reports that Liverpool and Everton have missed out on the chance to sign Ogenyi Onazi in the new year after the 21-year-old midfielder signed a new contract to keep him at Lazio until 2018. It's believed that Onazi had expressed an interest in moving to Merseyside in the summer but any potential deal was scuppered when both the Reds and the Blues refused to countenance handing over the £8m in cash that Lazio were demanding for the Nigerian playmaker.
Elsewhere and the Evening Standard carries the news that Ravel Morrison has joined Cardiff on a three-month loan deal from West Ham. The 21-year-old former Manchester United midfielder has made the move after failing to make a name for himself at the Hammers amid what the Standard describes as "well-documented personal issues". These include allegations that Morrison threatened to throw acid in his former girlfriend's face. In announcing the move on Twitter, the England Under-21 international moaned in a tweet that was soon deleted: "I got no ratings off people in the club not the club it's self (sic) just people in it."
Finally, could Frank Lampard extend his loan deal at Manchester City? According to Talksport that's now on the cards, "paving the way for the midfielder to make an emotional return to Stamford Bridge". The 36-year-old midfielder left Chelsea at the end of last season and subsequently signed a two-year deal with MLS outfit New York City, with the intention of heading Stateside in January to prepare for the start of the American season in March. But with Lampard impressing City manager Manuel Pellegrini, Talksport says the former England star could now remain at the Etihad "for a further month", which would mean he would be available to turn out for City when they visit the Bridge on 31 January. Lampard scored a late equaliser for City against Chelsea on Sunday.