Official: Real Madrid Sack Carlo Ancelotti

Benitez Linked With Vacant Post

Carlo Ancelotti Real MadridReal Madrid have sacked coach Carlo Ancelotti after two seasons in charge. The Italian was dismissed following a meeting with the La Liga side’s president Florentino Perez on Monday afternoon. Napoli coach Rafa Benitez is believed to be lined up as Ancelotti’s successor.

In a statement this evening, Perez said: “It was a very difficult decision, but we think it is the best for Real Madrid. Ancelotti has won the affection of the board and myself and also the fans. Carlo is now part of our history.

“He won the tenth European Cup, but the demand is high and we think it’s time to add some new impulse in order to get new titles.”

Real failed to pick up a trophy this season. They finished four points behind Barcelona in La Liga, but they saw their defence of the Champions League ended at the semi-final stage by Juventus while local rivals Atletico Madrid knocked them out of the Spanish Cup.

While there is no official word about a successor, Benitez is available after his contract at Napoli expired at the end of the Serie A season. Reports at the weekend claimed the former Liverpool boss was close last week to signing a contract to manage West Ham United from next season before there was an approach from Real.



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Arsenal In Bid For Midfielder Vidal

Deal To Be Done After Copa America

Arturo Vidal Arsenal transferArsenal are set to make a move for Juventus defensive midfielder Arturo Vidal, according to reports from South America. The claim comes from Argentine journalist Hernan Feler, who works for DirecTV Sports. Feler has a source who has told him that Vidal will move to the Emirates to join Arsenal following the Copa America tournament which begins next month. The Daily Mirror adds that the fee will be £25million.

Reports from Italy last week claimed that Vidal would join the Gunners this summer as he wants to play alongside his international team-mate Alexis Sanchez. It could be that this is a story that is doing the rounds once again. As ever in situations such as this, only time will tell.

As an aside, Feler claims that the source who told him about Vidal’s move to Arsenal has also told him that Real Madrid have lodged a €90million (£64million) bid for Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero. The Argentina international has been linked in the past with a move back to Spain – Barcelona were interested both last summer and in 2013. City insisted then that Aguero wasn’t leaving. They are expected to take a similar stance with Madrid particularly with Uefa set to lighten Financial Fair Play rules.

Tottenham To Join Martinez Battle

Meanwhile, Arsenal look set to face competition from their north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur for FC Porto striker Jackson Martinez. Reports at the weekend claimed the Gunners have agreed a fee of just under £25million for the Colombia international. Spanish website Fichajes.net claims Spurs have also joined the race and will lodge a similar-sized bid.

Martinez and his agent have always insisted that the 28-year-old would quit Porto this summer, though a move to Serie A has always been more likely.

The striker has finished as top scorer in the Portugese league in each season since his arrival from Mexican side Jaguares in 2012.




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Manchester United Transfer News: RvP, Lloris, Bale

RvP On Juventus Target List

Robin van Persie Manchester UnitedManchester United striker Robin van Persie is being linked with interest from Serie A champions Juventus. Reports from Italy claim the Dutchman is one of a number of strikers on Juve’s transfer target list for the summer.

There have already been rumours suggesting that the 31-year-old has been offered to Juventus as well as two other Serie A sides – Inter is one, Roma is believed to be the other.

Juventus have already signed young Argentine striker Paulo Dybala while Carlos Tevez looks set to see out his contract with the club before returning to Boca Juniors in Argentina in 2016 but the club will listen to offers for Fernando Llorente.

There are three principle striking targets left for Juve. One is van Persie who was strongly linked with the club prior to his £24million move to Old Trafford from Arsenal in 2012. The Dutchman even went as far as visiting Juve’s training camp at Vinovo before United made their approach.

Former Manchester United striker Radamel Falcao is believed to be another target for the Italian side. However, his wages of over £200,000 a week are too high for Juve and his stock has fallen following a disappointing season-long loan at Old Trafford. United announced on Sunday that the Colombia international is to return to Monaco, though he is thought to fancy a loan at another Premier League club.

One-time United target Gonzalo Higuain is another possibility for Juventus, but Paris Saint-Germain are demanding a transfer fee of €55million (£39million) which Juve aren’t willing to pay.

Lloris Staying, Says Spurs Boss

Manchester United transfer target Hugo Lloris is set to remain with Tottenham Hotspur claims Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino.

The keeper has been linked with interest from United in the event that David De Gea moves to Real Madrid. But despite reports of a release clause of €20million (£14million) if any club playing in the Champions League comes calling for Lloris, Pochettino says the stopper has no plans to leave.

“He has a contract and I think there is a lot of rumours about him,” said the Tottenham boss.

“But he is happy here and we are not worried about the situation.”

Kane, Bale, Sterling

The Daily Mail claims United want Harry Kane, Gareth Bale and Raheem Sterling this summer but Louis van Gaal will do well to sign any of those players.

Kane has pledged his future to Tottenham and after United enquired about Raheem Sterling, Liverpool told the club that any further communication would be unwelcome.

That just leaves Bale, a player whose future is up in the air. Despite weeks of rumours linking him with a possible £80million Manchester United transfer the trail has gone quiet – for now. Carlo Ancelotti is expected to leave the Bernabeu with former Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez set to take over. Much depends on how the new man sees Bale fitting into his plans.

More Manchester United transfer news here: Gundogan, Schweinsteiger, Falcao.




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Premier League Transfer News Monday 25 May

Bank Holiday Monday Transfer Rumours

Premier League transfer newsManchester United transfer target Ilkay Gundogan is closing in on an exit from Borussia Dortmund after the Bundesliga side bought his replacement. United boss Louis van Gaal has admitted he wants a new holding midfield player this summer with Gundogan and Bastian Schweinsteiger of Bayern Munich as favourites. Radamel Falcao has left Manchester United and returned to Monaco after a disappointing loan spell.

More details here.

The Daily Mail claims United want Harry Kane, Gareth Bale and Raheem Sterling this summer. They’ll do well to sign any of those players. Juventus are being linked once again with a move for United striker Robin van Persie. United’s pursuit of Hugo Lloris could be scuppered by Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino who says the Frenchman is going nowhere.

Liverpool could offer Rickie Lambert to Aston Villa as part of a £30m deal for Villa striker Christian Benteke. Real Madrid midfielder and Liverpool transfer target Asier Illarramendi says he wants to stay at the Bernabeu. Reports from Portugal claim Liverpool could be about to sign Benfica winger Eduardo Salvio.

More details here.

Arsenal and Liverpool could be snubbed by Manchester City winger James Milner. The England international may be about to sign a new deal at the Etihad.

More details here.

Juventus midfielder Arturo Vidal is being linked once again with a £25m move to Arsenal.

Watford could be about to give up in their efforts to persuade manager Slavisa Jovanovic to sign a new deal with the club.

Swansea City boss Gary Monk will rule himself out of the vacant manager’s job at West Ham United by signing a new contract at the Liberty Stadium. Crystal Palace boss Alan Pardew has also said he isn’t interested in the job. Slaven Bilic is the favourite to take over at Upton Park as the successor to Sam Allardyce whose departure from West Ham was announced one minute after the final whistle of their 2-0 defeat at Newcastle yesterday. However, some reports claim West Ham will make an ambitious attempt to sign Carlo Ancelotti. David Moyes is also being linked.

Leicester City boss Nigel Pearson is hoping Esteban Cambiasso will sign a new one-year deal with the Foxes.




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Arsenal Transfer News Monday 25 May

Milner To Reject Arsenal Move?

James Milner Arsenal transferArsenal transfer target James Milner could be about to snub interest from the Gunners and Liverpool and sign a new deal with Manchester City.

Milner’s contract at the Etihad expires this summer and he officially becomes a free agent at the end of next month. Both Arsenal and Liverpool have been linked with the 29-year-old, but while the Gunners are behind Liverpool in the race to secure his signature, Milner has been offered a new deal by Manchester City and manager Manuel Pellegrini says it now make-your-mind-up time for the England international.

“James said he was taking the decision at the end of the season,” Pellegrini said after City’s 2-0 victory over Southampton yesterday. “He is a very important player and he gave us a lot of spirit in this year but he must decide what is better for him.”

Game time is believed to be one reason Milner hasn’t put pen to paper as yet, but he has played more minutes in the Premier League this season than in any of the previous three campaigns. However, he was a starter in fewer than half the games – 18 out of 38.

City are reported to have offered Milner a new deal worth £135,000 a week.




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Liverpool Transfer News Monday 25 May

Benteke In – Lambert Out?

Rickie Lambert Liverpool transferLiverpool could use Rickie Lambert as bait in their efforts to sign Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke. The 33-year-old former Southampton striker has failed to hold down a place in the Reds’ starting line-up this season. Of his 25 Premier League appearances this season, only seven came as a member of the starting eleven and his 823 league minutes brought him only two leaue goals.

Crystal Palace tried to sign Lambert in January, but he elected to stay and fight for his place in the side. Bournemouth and now Aston Villa are keen to snap him up and the Daily Mirror claims he could form part of a £30million bid for Villa striker Benteke. The Belgium international is being linked with a move to Anfield as Liverpool seek to bolster a front-line that scored just 52 goals this season compared to 101 in 2013-14.

Illarramendi Wants Madrid Stay

Liverpool transfer target Asier Illarramendi says he wants to remain with Real Madrid. The 25-year-old has been expected to be sold by Madrid after the club recruited Brazilian midfielder Lucas Silva, but the former Real Sociedad man expects to still be at the Bernabeu next season.

“I have a contract for more years and hope to continue because I’m very comfortable here,” he told Spanish newspaper AS.

“The truth is I haven’t played much. We all like to play more, but it is clear that at Madrid it is very difficult to play and to have some continuity. I worked every day for that, but I had no opportunities on the field, really.”

While Illarramendi has played in 30 La Liga games this season – one more than in 2013-14 – only ten of those appearances have come as a starter. He made fewer appearances this season both in the Copa del Rey and the Champions League.

Milner To Snub Liverpool?

Liverpool’s pursuit of James Milner could be about to take a fatal blow with the news that the midfielder may be about to sign a new deal at Manchester City.

Milner is out of contract this summer and has yet to agree terms at the Etihad.

“James said he was taking the decision at the end of the season,” said City boss Manuel Pellegrini. “He is a very important player and he gave us a lot of spirit in this year but he must decide what is better for him.”

Reports in recent weeks have claimed City are offering Milner a new deal worth £135,000 a week.

Salvio In Fresh Liverpool Link

Benfica winger Eduardo Salvio could become Liverpool’s first signing of the summer. Super-agent Jorge Mendes has flown to London for meetings with potential suitors and Portugese newspaper O Jogo believes a move to Anfield is on the cards.

O Jogo has been predicting such a move for some months. However, they may have been counting on Champions League qualification before a Liverpool transfer for Salvio. The 24-year-old has a release clause of €60million (£43million) – far more than Liverpool would be willing to pay under current circumstances.



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Manchester United Transfer News Monday 25 May

Gundogan Dortmund Exit Closer

Ilkay Gundogan Manchester United transferBorussia Dortmund midfielder and Manchester United transfer target llkay Gundogan is close to leaving the club after they signed a player to replace him.

Gundogan has been linked with a number of Premier League sides, including Manchester United and Arsenal, after he told Dortmund he wouldn’t be signing a new deal with the club.

Gonzalo Castro is the man to replace Gundogan. Castro, 27, joins Dortmund on a four-year deal from Bayer Leverkusen where he has spent the last ten years.

Meanwhile, United boss Louis van Gaal has admitted the club need a holding midfield player. Speaking after Sunday’s goalless draw with Hull City, van Gaal says “the number six role” was vital after Michael Carrick was sidelined with a number of injuries this season.

“I don’t have another right-footed player who can play there so I have had to use Herrera there,” said the United boss. “He has done it very well, but it isn’t his specialist position. I’ve also played Rooney there. It isn’t his favourite position but I have had to use him in that role.”

Van Gaal added that he wasn’t in a position to discuss potential targets, but Gundogan is believed to be one of the candidates for such a role as is Bastian Schweinsteiger. Like Gundogan, the Bayern Munich player is out of contract in 2016 and has been linked with an exit from the club.

Schweinsteiger refused to comment on Saturday when asked about the rumours regarding a move to Old Trafford.

Falcao Goes

Radamel Falcao’s Manchester United exit has been confirmed by the club. United had an option to make Falcao’s transfer permanent this summer on payment of €50million (£37million) but in a statement on their website last night the club announced that they would not be exercising their option.

“Falcao is a top professional and a good human being,” said United boss Louis van Gaal. “On behalf of myself and everyone at the club I would like to wish him well for the future.”

Falcao scored just four goals in 29 appearances for United – 17 starts and 12 appearances off the bench. His average of a goal for every 374 minutes on the pitch was the worst of his career.

Although the 29-year-old has been linked with clubs in Italy and with one of his former sides, FC Porto, he is reported to have told his agent, Jorge Mendes to find him another club in the Premier League. Liverpool are already being linked but Chelsea are a possible destination after Didier Drogba announced he would be leaving the club this summer.




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Liverpool Transfer News and Rumours Sunday 24 May

Dzeko For Anfield?

Edin Dzeko Liverpool transfer newsManchester City will offer Edin Dzeko to Liverpool as part of a £50million transfer bid for Raheem Sterling. The Bosnia-Herzegovina international looks set to quit the Etihad Stadium after over four years at City and the Sky Blues will offer him to Liverpool in a bid to persuade the Reds to part with Sterling.

However, there are also reports that Sterling prefers a move to Arsenal over City. The Gunners’ boss Arsene Wenger is known to be a keen admirer of Sterling and tried to sign the forward prior to his move to Liverpool from QPR in 2010.

QPR look set to make £10m from any transfer fee for Sterling that exceeds £50million as part of that 2010 deal.

However, the smart money is on Sterling remaining at Anfield, at least for next season. The Reds’ hierarchy have already begun to dig in their heels over the 20-year-old having cancelled a meeting on Friday between Brendan Rodgers, Liverpool MD Ian Ayre, Sterling and his agent, Aidy Ward. That followed comments by Ward in which he said Sterling wasn’t going to sign a new deal at Anfield even if he was offered £900,000 a week.

Liverpool To Put In Benteke Bid

Liverpool will make a £30million bid for Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke. The Belgium international is believed to be top of Brendan Rodgers’ list of front-men this summer after a season which has seen the number of Premier League goals scored by his side almost halve from101 to just 51.

However, Villa boss Tim Sherwood is keen to hang on to Benteke and he believes the striker will still be at Villa Park next season.

“I have no reason to believe he wants to seek employment elsewhere,” Sherwood said on Saturday. “He seems to be very happy here and this morning, at training, he was smiling.

“He knows there are big games coming up in Sunday and the cup final and I think he wants to be at this football club. I’m convinced of that.”

Liverpool are also being linked with two more free agents: Burnley striker Danny Ings – though the Reds would have to pay a compensation fee for the 23-year-old – and Fiorentina’s Brazilian goalkeeper Neto.

Liverpool Favourites For Klopp

Liverpool are the bookies favourites for former Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp. That’s despite Brendan Rodgers insisting this week that he is “150percent certain” to be in charge at Anfield next season. Bookmakers report a flurry of bets on the German, whose eight-year tenure at Dortmund came to an end yesterday.



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Premier League Transfer News Sunday 24 May

Sunday’s Transfer Rumours

Premier League transfer newsThe agent of Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea is due to meet with Real Madrid this week. Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger is refusing to comment on reports linking him with a Manchester United transfer. Robin van Persie has been offered a huge contract to play in Qatar. Radamel Falcao has been told he will leave Manchester United after today’s final Premier League game. Everton want United centre-back Tyler Blackett if they fail in their bid to sign Jonny Evans.

Click here for more details.

Manchester United have been offered Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas in part-exchange for David De Gea. The Red Devils are again reported to be closing in on a £36m move for Valencia defender Nicolas Otamendi. Paris Saint-Germain have made a move for United winger Angel Di Maria, claims The Sun On Sunday.

Raheem Sterling prefers a move to Arsenal over one to Manchester City. Arsenal are on alert as Sami Khedira delivers a broadside to Real Madrid. The Germany international becomes a free agent at the end of next month.

Click here for more details.

Reports from Portugal claim Arsenal have agreed the £25m transfer of FC Porto striker Jackson Martinez.

Click here for more details.

Manchester City are prepared to offer striker Edin Dzeko to Liverpool as makeweight in the £50m transfer for Raheem Sterling. But City are also being linked with Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba. The Premier League side will battle it out with La Liga giants Barcelona and Real Madrid after Paris Saint-Germain pulled out of the race. Manchester United are also believed to be out of the running after Pogba ruled out a move back to Old Trafford. The France international left on a free transfer in 2012.

Liverpool are planning a £30m move for Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke. However, Villa boss Tim Sherwood is convinced he can persuade the Belgium international to remain at Villa Park. James Milner could be set for a move to Anfield after rejecting an offer from Arsenal. Burnley striker Danny Ings and Fiorentina goalkeeper Neto are also targets for the Merseyside club. Liverpool are the bookies favourites for former Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp. That’s despite Brendan Rodgers insisting this week that he is “150percent certain” to be in charge at Anfield next season.

Tottenham Hotspur are checking out Celta Vigo midfielder Michael Krohn-Dehli. Spurs will sell Emmanuel Adebayor for £5m this summer. Aston Villa are being linked with the Togo international who would link up once again with former Spurs boss Tim Sherwood.

Villa are also being linked with Manchester City defender Micah Richards. The former England international has spent the final year of his City contract on loan at Serie A side Fiorentina, but he has failed to impress enough to earn himself a permanent move. Newcastle United are also keen.

Southampton will offer £10m to QPR for striker Charlie Austin. QPR will receive a £10million windfall if Raheem Sterling leaves Liverpool for more than £50m. That’s as a result of Sterling’s transfer from the Rs to Liverpool in 2010.

Chelsea could turn to Stoke City keeper Asmir Begovic if Petr Cech moves to Arsenal. Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone will put the skids under Antoine Griezmann’s move to Chelsea. The France international has been linked with interest from Stamford Bridge. The value of Griezmann’s release clause is unknown, but reports from Spain claim it is around £43million.

Dick Advocaat will fly back to Holland this week for talks with his wife over taking the Sunderland manager’s job on a permanent basis. Meanwhile, Sunderland are being linked with QPR goalkeeper Robert Green.

Striker Nikica Jelavic will look to leave Hull City on loan if the Tigers are relegated from the Premier League today.

West Bromwich Albion want Manchester United striker James Wilson on a season-long loan. Defender Donervon Daniels is wanted back by his parent club Aberdeen. League One side Wigan Athletic are also keen.

Andre Vilas-Boas and Rafa Benitez are both being linked with the manager’s job at West Ham United. However, reports today claim that Benitez was close to signing with the Hammers before the call came from Real Madrid to take over from Carlo Ancelotti.




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Arsenal Transfer News and Rumours Sunday 24 May

Sterling ‘Prefers Arsenal Move’

Raheem Sterling Arsenal transfer newsLiverpool forward Raheem Sterling wants a move to Arsenal. The 20-year-old – whose contract dispute with Liverpool turned into all-out war this week – is set to be the subject of a £50million bid from Manchester City this summer. However, the Daily Star Sunday claims he wants a move to London and, in particular, to Arsenal.

Arsene Wenger is known to be an admirer of Sterling and tried to sign the youngster before his move to Liverpool from QPR in 2010.

But the Merseyside club remain the main obstacle to any transfer. Manager Brendan Rodgers and managing director Ian Ayre were due to meet Sterling and his agent Aidy Ward on Friday, but comments made by Ward in which he stated that Sterling wouldn’t sign for Liverpool even if he was offered £900,000 a week led to the Anfield management to cancel the meeting.

Liverpool look set to dig in their heels over any move away for Sterling and the chances are that he will still be at Anfield next season rather than at the Emirates or the Etihad. City are reported to be prepared to offer striker Edin Dzeko to Liverpool as part of any deal for Sterling.

Arsenal Target Blasts Real Madrid

Arsenal are reported to be on alert after Sami Khedira’s time with Real Madrid came to an end on Saturday. The Germany international wasn’t even in the squad for the 7-3 victory over Getafe at the Bernabeu and is expected to be released on expiry of his contract.

Arsenal and Chelsea are both being linked with the 27-year-old. The Gunners were keen last summer but Khedira’s reported £140,000-a-week wage demand brought Arsene Wenger’s interest to a swift close.

The World Cup-winner took aim at Real Madrid on Saturday saying he felt frozen out at the club and that the events of this season have hurt him to the bottom of his soul. But after refusing a new deal at the Bernabeu last summer and with the recruitment of midfielders James Rodriguez and, in particular, Toni Kroos meant he was pushed down the pecking order. His actions last summer also had the effect of displeasing members of the club’s hierarchy and it was widely reported at the time that he would be frozen out this term.

Khedira is likely to spurn a move to the Premier League in favour of a return to his homeland. Bundesliga side Schalke are believed to be keen and had talks with Khedira when they were in Madrid for a Champions League round of 16 match earlier this season. They aren’t able to offer Champions League football next season – their sixth place league finish means they will compete in the Europa League – but an announcement is expected by the end of next month when Khedira officially becomes a free agent.

See also: Arsenal have agreed a deal for FC Porto striker Jackson Martinez, claim reports.




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