Man Utd transfer news: Pogba, Lukaku, Pepe, Koulibaly, Varane
Paul Pogba has reportedly agreed contract terms with Real Madrid
Done deal with Real?
French midfielder Paul Pogba won’t be seen in a Manchester United shirt after next month, according to Spanish media.
Madrid-based newspaper AS reports that the 26-year-old is believed to have told United that he wants to join Real Madrid this summer and that he’s already agreed contract terms with the Spanish giants.
Pogba’s wage demands were proving a “stumbling block” to his Madrid move, but an agreement appears to have been reached, the paper adds.
Pogba, who is currently earning a reported €17m net (£14.6m) per season at Old Trafford, is ready to drop down to a modest €12m (£10.3m) after tax in order to relaunch his career at the Bernabeu.
There’s a different take on the Pogba soap opera in The Guardian. The paper claims that United “have yet to receive an offer” from Real Madrid, and that while they are ready to offload the Frenchman in the summer, United are also aware of interest from Juventus.
The Italian side sold Pogba to United in 2016 for £93.2m, following his successful four-year stint in Turin, and The Guardian claims that Juventus would love to have him back. For that to happen they “would have to sell two or three important players”.
United are reportedly demanding €130m (£112.4m) for Pogba, and having splashed out £86.4m on Cristiano Ronaldo last summer, Juventus aren’t rolling in cash. But the interest is genuine and Juve recently sat down for talks with Pogba’s agent, Mino Raiola, the paper says.
Pepe for Lukaku
And who might United look to bring in with the money made on Pogba? The Daily Star says that the Red Devils “have joined Liverpool in the race for Lille star Nicolas Pepe” as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looks to “make some big changes to his squad”.
Romelu Lukaku - who was described by Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville as “unfit” during Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Chelsea - is expected to follow Pogba out of the Old Trafford exit in a few weeks, with Italian clubs Inter Milan and Juventus vying for his signature.
The Star says that Solskjaer has identified Lille strike Pepe as a credible alternative. The Ivory Coast international has netted 19 times this season in Ligue 1, second only to Kylian Mbappe in the goalscoring charts.
The Daily Express says that United have been handed a transfer “boost” in their pursuit of Napoli central defender Kalidou Koulibaly.
Although the 27-year-old was shown up by Arsenal in Napoli’s recent Europa League defeat to the Gunners, he’s still highly regarded in Europe - and Solskjaer is believed to be ready to swoop.
Asked how he might respond to an approach from United, Napoli boss Carlo Ancelotti replied: “I am not going to block who wants to leave, I’ve never done it in my career.”
Zidane: Varane is staying
Real Madrid’s Raphael Varane is another defender linked with United, but according to Bernabeu boss Zinedine Zidane, the 26-year-old will stay with the La Liga side.
Quoted by Goal.com, Zidane said: “The positive point of this season finale is that Varane will stay.”
Premier League results
- Liverpool 5 Huddersfield Town 0
- Tottenham Hotspur 0 West Ham United 1
- Crystal Palace 0 Everton 0
- Fulham 1 Cardiff City 0
- Southampton 3 AFC Bournemouth 3
- Watford 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 2
- Brighton and Hove Albion 1 Newcastle United 1
- Leicester City 3 Arsenal 0
- Burnley 0 Manchester City 1
- Manchester United 1 Chelsea 1