Barcelona may have to pay release clause to secure Xavi as manager – Paper Round

Barca may have to pay for Xavi

Spanish newspaper Marca reports that Barcelona could have to pay part or all of Xavi Hernandez’s release clause. The clause stands at around five million euros, and Al Sadd are refusing to let their manager go, despite previously giving assurances they would not stand in the way should Barcelona want to appoint their former player as the manager.


Coutinho set for £140m Newcastle switch in January – Paper Round


Paper Round’s view: It is hard to know if Al Sadd really did make such a gesture to Xavi, but if the agreement they have for a release clause is legally enforceable, then it would not be the first time that a gentleman’s agreement in football has not been honoured. At just five million though, even Barcelona should be able to afford the appointment for the Catalan.

Pep convinced Xavi is ‘ready’ to replace Koeman as the manager of Barcelona

United and Barca chase City youngster

Manchester United and Barcelona are eyeing a potential bargain from Manchester City, with other clubs also waiting in the wings. The Daily Mail reports that James McAtee, City’s 19-year-old midfielder, hit his third hat-trick of the season and is attracting attention from Ajax, Atletico Madrid and Liverpool as well as he enters the last 18 months of his current contract.

Paper Round’s view: McAtee has plenty of players in his way in midfield at City, with Jack Grealish, Phil Foden, Bernardo Silva, Ilkay Gundogan and Kevin De Bruyne some of the club’s best players. It might feel unlikely now but both Gundogan and Silva are linked with moves to other clubs, so he may be able to gauge from the start of next season if he is going to get a chance of regular football.

Chelsea linked with Hungarian Szalai

The Sun reports that Chelsea are looking to make a defensive addition in the January transfer window. The club wants to sign Fenerbahce’s 6ft4in central defender Attila Szalai, a 23-year-old Hungarian international who impressed over the course of this summer’s Euro 2020 tournament. Fenerbahce are said to be keen on spending any money raised by the sale, and Chelsea could offer £17 million.

Paper Round’s view: Chelsea were keen last summer on Jules Kounde, but it appeared they would need to spend well in excess of £60m to land the Frenchman. It may be that their scouting network, which seems to be one of the best in the league, have identified another option, though with Antonio Rudiger set to leave on a free, they may believe they need both players.

Arsenal could move for Isak

The Mirror links Arsenal with Real Sociedad Alexander Isak. The Swedish international – formerly of Borussia Dortmund – has been a rumoured target of Arsenal and he is rated at £60m. The 22-year-old would potentially be a replacement for striker Alexandre Lacazette, with the 30-year-old Frenchman likely to join Atletico Madrid on a free transfer this summer.

Paper Round’s view: Lacazette had intended to join Atletico before Arsenal only to see the Spaniard’s hit by a transfer embargo, and with his time seemingly up in London it makes sense for him to switch. Isak is growing into his frame at Sociedad, and while he would not be a like-for-like replacement for Lacazette, he is showing plenty of potential and would be a long term signing for Edu as he builds the squad.


Conte plans to poach four Serie A stars for Spurs in January – Paper Round

03/11/2021 AT 00:11


Get Kane firing, target Martinez, Dele’s last chance: Conte’s Spurs to-do list – Inside Football

02/11/2021 AT 12:34

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