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Portuguese midfielder the most ‘viable’ Busquets replacement for Barcelona

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Barcelona have ambitious plans for the upcoming summer transfer window.

Robert Lewandowski remains at the top of the agenda for the Blaugrana heading into the summer. At the same time, the Catalans are looking to strengthen several other positions in the squad.

Manager Xavi Hernandez has made it clear that he wishes to have two options for every position across the pitch. It has led to the club looking for a new defensive midfielder to cover for and eventually replace captain Sergio Busquets.

Barcelona have narrowed in on three potential options for the role in Ruben Neves (Wolves), Aurelien Tchouameni (AS Monaco) and Martin Zubimendi (Real Sociedad).

See also  Barcelona Star midfielder will accept a salary cut to leave the club on loan

However, as reported by SPORT, Barça have identified Neves as the most viable option to replace Busquets in the long run due to their good relationship with Wolves and his agent Jorge Mendes.

In the recent past, Barcelona have done multiple transfer deals with the Premier League club, having sold Nelson Semedo and loaned Francisco Trincao last summer, while they signed Adama Traore on loan in January.

At the same time, Barça president Joan Laporta shares a strong relationship with Jorge Mendes, who represents Neves and has close ties with Wolves as well, having helped them broker deals for several players in the past.

See also  Three ways in which Xavi wants to use Sergi Roberto next season for Barcelona

All these factors stack up in favour of Neves being the most viable candidate to reinforce the pivot position in the squad for Barcelona this summer.

However, as per the report, Wolves would demand a sum of €50 million for Neves, something that the Catalans do not intend to pay. Instead, the La Liga heavyweights plan to bring down the price by offering players in exchange as part of the deal.

See also  Revealed: The Two Players Barcelona Would Exchange Frenkie De Jong For

The names of Riqui Puig, Oscar Mingueza and Nico Gonzalez have emerged as possible makeweights in the transfer for Neves in the summer. The first two are expected to be sold this summer, while Nico could be allowed to leave on loan due to competition for places.

It will be interesting to see if Barcelona are able to strike a deal to sign Neves or are forced to look elsewhere.

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Report: Arsenal now really Keen to sign ‘Astonishing’ attacker who scored more goals than Gabriel Jesus last season

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According to But Football Club, Arsenal want to sign Bayer Leverkusen and France winger Moussa Diaby before the transfer window shuts.

The Gunners are looking for a new wide player. Raphinha was high on their wish list and Mikel Arteta tried really hard to bring him in. The Brazilian, however, joined Barcelona for £55 million (Sky Sports) instead, and Arsenal have now apparently turned their attention to Diaby.

Arsenal really keen to sign Moussa Diaby from Bayer Leverkusen

Diaby is one of the finest players in the Bundesliga.

See also  Xavi Hernandez gives Barcelona board his list of eight summer targets

The 23-year-old France international scored 17 goals and provided 14 assists in all competitions, which is a truly sensational return for a wide player.

His performances have caught the eye of a number of clubs, including Arteta’s Arsenal. The report claims that Diaby ‘strongly appeals’ to the Gunners boss, who is really keen to bring in a new winger before the window shuts.

The ‘astonishing‘ winger has come out and claimed that he wants to stay at Leverkusen this season, while the German outfit are keen to retain his services too.

See also  Barcelona Star midfielder will accept a salary cut to leave the club on loan

However, the report claims that if an offer in the region of £59.2 million arrives, they will let him go.

Arsenal don’t intend to pay that figure, but the report claims they will try to negotiate a deal for a lower fee.

Diaby still has three years left on his contract at Leverkusen.

Diaby really is a sensational player.

31 goal involvements in a single campaign for a 23-year-old wide player is a truly sensational return.

See also  Report: Barcelona teenager could be involved in a swap deal with Lewandowski

Even Gabriel Jesus, who is viewed as the answer to Arsenal’s goalscoring woes, didn’t score as many goals as Frenchman last season.

Arsenal’s backup winger at the moment is Nicolas Pepe. The Ivorian, on his day, is unplayable, but sadly for Arsenal supporters, those days have rarely ever occurred over the last three years.

Diaby would be a massive upgrade over Pepe, but whether Arsenal can lure him in remains to be seen.

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Report: Star ready to join Man United now wants £33.7million contract

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The latest reports in the media are anything to go by and Adrien Rabiot’s mother-agent, Veronique, is proving to be a difficult negotiator.

Last night, we covered a story (via La Gazzetta Dello Sport) claiming that the French international has demanded a three-year deal worth £25.4million to move to Old Trafford.

This morning, as per Corriere dello Sport (news image provided below), the Red Devils have agreed a fee worth 17-18 million euros with Juventus but the dilemma is that the agreement with the player is still missing.

See also  REPORT: Barcelona board members met with superagent to discuss three players

Ten Hag contacted Rabiot to convince him to join Man Utd which is why the midfielder became willing to negotiate personal terms.

However, Veronique now wants a four-year contract worth 40 million euros (£33.7million) for his son and the negotiations have slowed down.

See also  LIVESTREAM: Watch Levante v Barcelona - English commentary HD| Premier League

Manchester United’s midfield department is in desperate need of reinforcements and Ten Hag may end up losing out on signing Frenkie de Jong to Chelsea.

The last big signing for the central midfield was done back in 2018 when Mourinho splashed the cash to lure Fred from Shakhtar. The Red Devils must act fast to strengthen things in the center of the park.

See also  Barcelona set sights on €30 million-rated Dutch defender

Rabiot is neither as creative as Pogba nor as versatile as De Jong. However, he has experience of winning big titles with PSG and Juventus and even with France. So, in all fairness, he would be an upgrade to McFred.

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Man United pushing for Pogba replacement in more ways than one

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Manchester United may be about to take on another troublesome Frenchman, having just gotten rid of one.

The departures of Paul Pogba and others this summer have left new manager Erik ten Hag with a bare cupboard in terms of midfield options.

United have turned to Juventus outcast Adrien Rabiot, who is available for £15 million, after failing to secure Frenkie de Jong, the Ten Hag’s top transfer target, from Barcelona.

Rabiot, 27, isn’t particularly popular at Juventus and hasn’t replicated the form that established his reputation during the seven years he spent at PSG before that.

But it isn’t just on-field sluggishness that has harmed the reputation of a player who was once regarded as France’s golden boy.

Off-field squabbles and indiscretions, not only by Rabiot but also by his formidable mother and agent Veronique, have earned him a reputation as a difficult customer in the game.

See also  Xavi Hernandez gives Barcelona board his list of eight summer targets

However, Ten Hag and United are becoming increasingly desperate. Despite the club’s insistence that their interest in Rabiot was firm prior to Sunday’s season-opening loss to Brighton, the timing appears to be a reactionary move.

And Rabiot’s rap sheet contains numerous items that could cause United to live to regret their decision.

Rabiot was on the verge of breaking into the PSG senior squad after graduating from their academy in 2012.

Rabiot was supposed to travel to Qatar with the team for a mid-season tour, but his mother insisted on accompanying him.

Veronique, Rabiot’s uncompromising agent, enters the picture. After his father, Michel Provost, suffered a stroke in 2007 that left him with locked-in syndrome, she took over his career. Michel is paralysed but fully aware.

See also  Barcelona Star midfielder will accept a salary cut to leave the club on loan

Her insistence on accompanying the tour caused friction, and Rabiot was eventually loaned out to Toulouse.

Even stranger, she allegedly insisted on attending all of their training sessions while there.

Two years later, Rabiot was on the verge of leaving PSG after Laurent Blanc demoted him to the reserves.

Veronique was waiting for Blanc as he left PSG’s Camp des Loges training facility one evening.

‘You can’t treat him like that. ‘I’m not going to agree to that,’ Blanc was told, presumably forcefully.

PSG had no choice but to call in security, but the confrontation appeared to work.

See also  LIVESTREAM: Watch Levante v Barcelona - English commentary HD| Premier League

Rabiot’s contract with PSG was renewed – and on better terms – not long after he failed to secure a move to Roma.

France’s hopes of adding the European Championship to their World Cup glory last year ended when they lost on penalties to Switzerland in the last-16.

Afterwards, an extraordinary video emerged of Veronique confronting Mbappe’s father, Wilfried, after the PSG striker missed the decisive spot-kick.

It is thought she said: ‘It is embarrassing how he struck that, for a player of his level. He hit it too lightly, I hope you are going to scold him.’

Apparently during an earlier discussion, Veronique told Wilfried his son was ‘arrogant’, has a ‘big head’ and gets ‘too much protection from the press.’

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