Arsenal vs Tottenham, Liverpool and Chelsea in action this weekend, Prem full stadiums next season – transfer news LIVE

Arsenal vs Tottenham, Liverpool and Chelsea in action this weekend, Prem full stadiums next season – transfer news LIVE

March 13, 2021

ZINEDINE ZIDANE has refused to rule out Crisiano Ronaldo having a bombshell return to Real Madrid.

Meanwhile, Chelsea are getting set to face Leeds this weekend, with Arsenal in action against Spurs on Sunday.

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Follow our LIVE blog below to get the latest from around the clubs…

  • Joshua Jones

    MORNING FOOTY FANS

    GOATs Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo could soon be getting their coats.

    It's claimed Messi's dad Jorge is heading to Barcelona for talks on the 33-year-old's future.

    And Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has declined to rule out a Bernabeu return for Ronaldo, 36, as Juventus ponder cash-saving measures.

    Not much can rival speculation over those two veteran geniuses – but the latest talk around Manchester City goes pretty close.

    Etihad chief Pep Guardiola is reportedly keen on Atletico Madrid's 21-year-old Portugal striker Joao Felix – with record scorer Sergio Aguero tipped to leave, possibly for Barcelona.

    Meanwhile, City's neighbours United are being linked with two more centre-backs.

    Villarreal's Spain star Pau Torres and Roma's Italy ace Gianluca Mancini are both 24 and in outstanding form.

    And the Transfer Window podcast suggest United have held talks over AC Milan keeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.

    And finally, fans WILL be allowed to attend the FA Cup Final – despite it coming two days before the planned opening up of grounds to 10,000 fans.

    The Wembley showpiece will be held on May 15, 48 hours before the relaxation of restrictions on crowds.

    But the FA have lobbied to be one of the pilot events ahead of the official return.

  • Ian Tuckey

    LASC-GASP TOON HERO

    NEWCASTLE 1 ASTON VILLA 1: Jamaal Lascelles' bullet header four minutes into stoppage time saved the lowly Magpies – after Ciaran Clark's own goal put Villa in front on 86 minutes.

    Jamaal Lascelles rescues Newcastle with a superb header from the final action of a Premier League clash that exploded into life late onCredit: Getty Images – Getty

    A dran goalless draw seemed likely until Ollie Watkins' header deflected in off Clark and the bar.

    But Toon skipper Lascelles sparked mad home celebrations when he powered home Jacob Murphy's cross – lifting Newcastle two points clear of the drop zone.

    Centre-back Jamaal Lascelles celebrates edging the Magpies away from the danger zone with a point-saver against VillaCredit: Reuters
  • Ian Tuckey

    BLUES IN THE MOOD

    Chelsea are looking hungry as they look to leapfrog Leicester into third spot – if only briefly – with victory over Leeds in tomorrow's Premier League opener at 12.30pm.

  • Ian Tuckey

    REGRETS? I’VE HAD A ROO

    EXCLUSIVE: Wayne Rooney has filmed a biopic celebrating his 20-year career in football — including some of his off-pitch exploits.

    The ex-England captain and Manchester United legend, 35, has done a series of interviews alongside wife Coleen, 34, for the Bafta-winning team behind the Amy Winehouse and Ayrton Senna documentaries.

    England legend Wayne Rooney and wife Coleen pose with their four sons

    Unseen footage, as well as some of Wayne’s most memorable goals and footballing highlights, will be shown. Famous faces like David Beckham and Gary Neville will provide commentary and insight.

    It will also go into detail on the ups and downs of now-Derby chief Rooney’s life — both personal and professional.

    A production insider said: “It’s going to be a wonderfully powerful and inspiring look at Wayne’s career — how he went from unknown boy wonder to national captain, and England’s greatest- ever goal scorer.

    “But it also offers a rarely seen look at the man behind the player. He will likely be asked about marital mistakes he’s made in the past, drink driving, and the time he was arrested in the US.

    “It is made clear he’s a fantastic dad, and loving husband — but he holds his hands up to previous lapses in judgement. Wayne will, of course, also have a say in what gets signed off.”

    The film is subject to a bidding deal between Netflix and Amazon Prime. Wayne’s spokesman said last night: “No decisions have yet been made on what content is or isn’t part of the movie, so people will just have to wait until its release.”

  • Ian Tuckey

    OLD TORR-AFFORD?

    Manchester United have made contact with Villarreal’s Spain defender Pau Torres reports say.

    ESPN claims the 24-year-old is now a top target for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer this summer.

    And United could even sign Torres for LESS THAN his £56million release clause if Villarreal fail to qualify for Europe.

    Solskjaer is eager to sign a defensive partner for captain Harry Maguire after Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly both failed to impress this term.

    United have been linked with a host of big names, including Real Madrid star Raphael Varane and Sevilla’s Jules Kounde.

    However, it’s reckoned Torres is now Solskjaer’s preferred option due to his age, 6ft 3in height and the fact that he’s also left-footed.

    United were eager to sign Nathan Ake from Bournemouth last summer before rivals Man City beat them after meeting his £40m release clause.

    And Solskjaer now looks set to ensure he does not miss out on another left-footer for the backline. having already made contact with Torres’ representatives.

  • Ian Tuckey

    DAWSON RISE NO SURPRISE

    TROY DEENEY EXCLUSIVE: Craig Dawson could be playing Champions League football next season — and there seems to be a lot of surprise about that fact.

    But not from those of us who played with Craig at Watford. Since he broke into the West Ham side just after Christmas, the Hammers have gone from strength to strength, and you cannot see him losing his place.

    Troy Deeney has praised the quality of Craig Dawson, who is on loan at West Ham from Watford

    Craig is a solid bloke, a family man, a brilliant pro and a defender who simply loves defending — something of a rarity in the Premier League these days.

    He can play too, he has a lovely pass in him and has always had goals in his locker. A centre-half scoring four goals in a dozen games, as Craig has done, can do wonders for any team.

    Yes, he was relegated at Watford last season, as he was during his previous Premier League campaign with West Brom — but nobody was blaming Craig for us going down.

    When West Ham signed him, I wasn’t surprised. David Moyes values a down-to-Earth pro with a strong work ethic and that is Craig to a T.

    Like me, he played non-league and lower-league football. When you’ve come up through that route, commitment and workrate are virtually guaranteed.

    You look around West Ham and you see a lot of people – like Craig – who are proving doubters wrong.

  • Ian Tuckey

    ISMAEL BELIEVES BARNSLEY PROMOTION DREAM

    EXCLUSIVE: When Valerien Ismael took over at Barnsley his target was to avoid relegation, writes Justin Allen.

    But after seven wins in a row and a draw from their last eight games – they are on the second best unbeaten run in the country – they travel to Bournemouth today sitting in a play-off spot.

    And this incredible run of form has got fans dreaming of playing Premier League football next season.

    The Tykes have only been in the top flight for one season in their entire 134-year history after Danny Wilson famously led them there 24 years ago.

    Ismael told SunSport: “The main focus was to reach 50 points as soon as possible and we now have 58.

    “We want to see how many we can get before the international break in three games time. Then we can see what we can reach this season – can we go for more?

    “We’ve done it step by step. The first aim was to implement the philosophy then get results and then get them consistently. When you do that, you climb the table.

    “We did it in December by winning six games out of eight and, even in January when we lost three in a row, the performances were brilliant.

    “So we didn’t lose confidence or faith in the way we play football. We believe this is the right way.”

  • Ian Tuckey

    GUNNER COST YA

    THE ANALYST: Danny Higginbotham's verdict – ARSENAL will be in big trouble if they shirk their defensive duties against Tottenham’s front four.

    I think Jose Mourinho has the most potent attacking force in Europe right now.

    Arsenal cannot afford to make sloppy errors against Tottenham

    Mikel Arteta favours playing out from the back, like Manchester City but I don’t think he has the players to pull it off.

    The Gunners got caught out against Olympiacos and Burnley doing that.

    Recently Mourinho has employed Gareth Bale, Son Heung-min, Harry Kane and Lucas Moura in what is effectively a 4-2-4 and they all have a very good press.

    This attack thrashed Burnley and Crystal Palace, scoring eight goals. So Arteta’s defenders have to do two things: communicate and not allow themselves to be dragged out of position.

    It is vital they talk to one another. Arteta has good defenders but I’m not convinced there is a communicator among them.

    Kane will drop into the No 10 role and, as a centre-back, you can’t be tempted to follow him because that leaves space behind. For me, Kane is the dream centre-forward.

    He has five goals in his last four games, while also providing two assists. And I reckon Spurs’ talisman can do it against Arsenal to bag the North London bragging rights.

  • Ian Tuckey

    OLD TORR-AFFORD?

    Manchester United have made contact with Villarreal star Pau Torres reports say.

    ESPN claims the centre-back, 24, has emerged as a top target for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer this summer.

    Man Utd have been in touch over a deal for Villarreal defender Pau Torres

    And United could even sign Torres for LESS THAN his £56million release clause if Villarreal fail to qualify for Europe.

    Solskjaer is eager to sign a defensive partner for captain Harry Maguire after Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly both failed to impress this term.

    United have been linked with a host of big names, including Real Madrid star Raphael Varane and Sevilla’s Jules Kounde.

    However, it’s reckoned Torres is now Solskjaer’s preferred option due to his age, 6ft 3in height and the fact that he’s also left-footed.

    United were eager to sign Nathan Ake from Bournemouth last summer before rivals Man City beat them after meeting his £40m release clause.

    And Solskjaer now looks set to ensure he does not miss out on another left-footer for the backline. having already made contact with Torres’ representatives.

  • Ian Tuckey

    HENDERSON HAILS WILDER

    Old Trafford keeper Dean Henderson has saluted outgoing Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder, for whom he spent two seasons on loan.

    Henderson who has started United’s last three games, posted on social media: “Don’t ever underestimate what you did for Sheffield United! 

    “Can’t wait to see the statue at the Lane! Not only a great manager but a great person. Best of luck for the future.”

    View this post on Instagram

    A post shared by Dean Henderson (@deanhenderson)

  • Ian Tuckey

    NEW MANC?

    Manchester United and Chelsea are being linked with Roma's Italy defender Gianluca Mancini.

    The 24-year-old, capped four times, is rated at a tempting £27million.

    Everton were thought to have trailed Mancini while he was at his last club Atalanta from 2017-20.

    Roma star Gianluca Mancini is attracting interest from Premier League giantsCredit: Getty Images – Getty
  • Ian Tuckey

    MAGIC JONSON

    Jonson Clarke-Harris had some huge shoes to fill when he replaced a certain Ivan Toney as the main man up front for Peterborough in the summer.

    And not only has he risen to that challenge superbly since moving from Bristol Rovers, he has put himself into a great position to beat his predecessor’s efforts from last season.

    Jonson Clarke-Harris is the fourth-highest league scorer in England this season

    The striker had an incredible February – scoring eight League One goals – to win the division’s SkyBet Player of the Month prize.

    He now has 21 goals from 33 games – more than current Premier League top scorer Mo Salah and just four shy of the 24 Toney had netted before last season was curtailed after 32 matches.

    And JCH is hoping he will end up the campaign bettering those numbers as well as leading Posh into the Championship.

    He said: “Ivan is a goal machine who is tearing up the Championship at Brentford right now and I’ve had to come in to replace him, which is a hard job for any striker.

    “Yet I’m a different player to him but one who can still do the same job as well as want to do even more.

    “It was always my aim to get as close as possible to the amount of goals he scored and even now at this stage of the season I’m thinking I can do better."

  • Ian Tuckey

    SAME MOLDE AS COUSIN HAALAND

    Erling Haaland's cousin Albert Tjaaland is reportedly set to be promoted Molde's first-team after staring for the youth team.

    The 17-year-old – who boasts a striking physical resemblance to the Borussia Dortmund ace – has banged in 64 goals in 37 games for the Norwegian side.

    Albert Tjaaland is reportedly set to be promoted to Molde's first-team after starring for the youth side
    Tjaaland has been compared to his cousin Erling Haaland who has been tearing it up at Borussia Dortmund

    Just like Haaland, Tjaaland started off his career at Bryne, before joining Molde after he fired in 40 games in 31 matches last term.

    And he has continued his goalscoring exploits at Molde, where Haaland scored 20 times in 50 fixtures before he left for Red Bull Salzburg.

    After impressing boss Erling Moe this campaign, ESPN have claimed that the player is set to make his first-team debut when the new Eliteserien season starts on April 5.

    Speaking to Eurosport Norway about the hype in the youngster, Moe said: "I have seen some of it in social media.

    “He is an exciting young boy who really has some exciting qualities, so I think it must be possible to calm down a bit, yes.

    "It's a bit like that when you post something on social media at the moment, it spreads like wildfire."

  • Ian Tuckey

    STILL DI MAIN MAN

    Former Manchester United wideman Angel Di Maria, 32, has signed a new one-year PSG deal, the Champions League quarter-finals have announced.

    Credit: Reuters
  • Ian Tuckey

    BARCA WHIZKID EYES £130m LIMIT ON BUY-OUT CLAUSE

    Barcelona starlet Ilaix Moriba is reportedly keen on keeping his buyout clause below £130million to remain in control of his future.

    The midfielder is out of contract at the Nou Camp next year and has been linked with moves to Manchester United and Chelsea.

    The 18-year-old became the highest-paid player in the history of Barcelona's academy when he last renewed his contact back in 2019.

    But ESPN claim Ilaix's agency, Stellar Group, hope to land a similar deal to Nou Camp teammate Ansu Fati, also 18, after he penned a bigger deal.

    The report adds that Barca are keen for the midfielder to extend but hope to significantly raise his £85m buyout clause.

    Yet Ilaix, who is reportedly keen to stay in Catalonia, is said to be reluctant for his release to be raised above £130m.

    Moriba joined Barca aged seven from their city rivals Espanyol, and came through their famed La Masia academy.

  • Ian Tuckey

    VANKS, JOSE

    Rafael van der Vaart has thanked Jose Mourinho for telling him to leave Real Madrid because he was buying Mesut Ozil in his position.

    The Dutchman played under the Spurs and ex-Manchester United boss at the Bernabeu for just two months in 2010 but the Portuguese had a big impact on him in that time.

    Ex-Holland star Rafael Van der Vaart praised Jose Mourinho for his straight-talking

    Mourinho was appointed as Manuel Pellegrini's Blancos replacement at the end of May 2010. And by August Van der Vaart had left for Tottenham in a £10million transfer and Ozil had arrived at the Bernabeu for £25m from Werder Bremen.

    But despite the quick turnaround, Van der Vaart, 38, told Paul Coyte's talkSPORT 2 Sportsday Breakfast show he was grateful for Mourinho's approach.

    He said: "He is an amazing coach. He’s an honest guy and I think almost every player who works with him, no one is talking bad about him.

    “That means he’s protecting his players, honest and that means a lot to players.

    “Although at that time he told me ‘Rafa, I’m going to buy Ozil. So I think it’s better you leave the club. If you are staying, it’s also okay but you are too good to be on the bench. Try and go somewhere else’.

    “I left for Spurs, so at the end I’m also really happy to him.”

  • Ian Tuckey

    LONG LAYE-OFF

    Everton have been dealt a devastating injury blow with Abdoulaye Doucoure out for TEN weeks for a fractured foot.

    Carlo Ancelotti’s hopes of a top-four finish have taken a huge hit after the diagnosis this week, with Doucoure becoming a key player following his £20million move from Watford last summer.

    The Frenchman, 28, has played 30 games in all competitions this term for Ancelotti.

    And Doucoure’s fine form has helped Everton to sixth place in the Premier League table, with just four points separating them from the Champions League spots.

    However, Doucoure will now be unavailable for 10 weeks after sustaining a foot injury against West Brom earlier this month. He missed the defeat to Chelsea on Monday, and scans have now revealed the seriousness of his setback.

    Ancelotti said: “Doucoure has a small fracture on his foot and so he has to stay out. I don’t know how long, maybe eight weeks, maybe ten.

    “I hope he can recover before the end of the season, we are not happy for this.

    “Doucoure did really, he is an important player for us, but we are not the only club that has to manage injuries. In this period there are a lot of injuries and we have to manage this.”

  • Ian Tuckey

    QPR INDEX LOGO NO-GO

    QPR will no longer be carrying the Football Index logo on the front of their shirts.

    Football Index was suspended yesterday, five days after a huge crash on its market that left customers with tens of millions of pounds trapped in its platform.

    The self-styled “football stock market” company has announced it will be entering administration.

    QPR CEO Lee Hoos said: “As a football club we entered into a one-year agreement with Football Index in good faith.

    “In light of recent events, the front property of QPR’s home and away strips will no longer sport the Football Index logo.”

  • Ian Tuckey

    GUNDOGAN NAMES FINEST TEAM EVER

    Ilkay Gundogan has named just four of his Manchester City teammates in his best XI of stars he's played with.

    The midfielder has lined up alongside a host of world-class talent at the Cityzens as well as for Borussia Dortmund and Germany.

    Gundogan rates last season's PFA Player of the Year Kevin De Bruyne as the best central midfielder he's ever played next to, while former City stars David Silva and Leroy Sane on the wings and Vincent Kompany in defence.

    Gundogan left out Aguero, Timo Werner and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang up front, opting for Bayern Munich hitman Robert Lewandowski, who scooped both FIFA and UEFA's male player of the year last term.

  • Ian Tuckey

     LONDON HOME GAARD

    Martin Odegaard has hinted at a North London stay after stating he feels at 'home' at Arsenal.

    The playmaker, set to be named Norway's new captain, joined the Gunners on loan from Real Madrid in January.

    Norway midfielder Martin Odegaard says he feels comfortable on loan with ArsenalCredit: Getty Images – Getty

    The 22-year-old has quickly become a key player, bagging his first goal with a cracker in Thursday's 3-1 win against Olympiacos.

    And Odegaard told BT Sport: "I wanted to get a shot on goal, luckily I had a good hit and it went in.

    “I have felt at home since the first day, I am happy to be here and I feel great so I'm very pleased to be a part of the team.

    "It is just half-time. We have to keep going. We have a big game on Saturday and then have to be ready for next Thursday.

    "It is very important, we are not where we want to be in the league so this is very important for us and a chance to get Champions League football next year."

  • Ian Tuckey

    ZZ WON'T RULE OUT RON RETURN

    Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has sensationally refused to rule out Cristiano Ronaldo's return.

    The ex-Manchester United superstar, 36, could be heading for the Juventus exit door at the end of the season.

    Juventus crashed out of the Champions League round of 16 for the second consecutive year at the hands of Porto during the week. And they are facing serious financial problems due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    To help boost the coffers, the club would reportedly be open to letting Ronaldo leave to get his £500,000-a-week wages off the books a year before his contract ends.

    With speculation over his next move growing, it was revealed how his agent Jorge Mendes held 'informal' talks with a return to Real Madrid.

    And Zidane said: "You know what Cristiano Ronaldo means for Real Madrid. You know the affection we have for him at Real Madrid. What he did here was magnificent.

    "Right now he’s a Juventus player and he’s doing really well there. I can’t say anything about all the many things they say. I can only say that he is a Juventus player and we have to respect that.”

  • Ian Tuckey

    NICE LITTLE FERNA

    Manchester United have hailed Bruno Fernandes winning February’s goal-of-the-mont award for his long-ranger curler in a controversial 3-3 draw with Everton.

    The midfielder arched a top-corner shot over and away from visiting keeper Robin Olsen to put United 2-0 up.

    But Everton roared back to 2-2 before Scott McTominay restored United’s lead, only for Dominic Calvert-Lewin to earn Everton a point five minutes into stoppage time.

  • Ian Tuckey

    PEP: SCOTT RULES STYLE HIGH CLUB

    Pep Guardiola admits he has no chance of beating his next opponent Scott Parker – in the fashion stakes.

    But the Manchester City boss is hoping his team will give Fulham something of a dressing down at Craven Cottage.

    Man City chief Pep Guardiola bows to Fulham counterpart Scott Parker for style

    Parker turned a few heads at Anfield last weekend by patrolling the touchline in a snazzy white jacket.

    And it won the approval of Pep – who often sports some Dsquared clobber rather than a tracksuit in the dug-out.

    Asked who has the better sense of style, Guardiola said: “Listen he’s younger and has hair, he’s better than me, definitely.

    “I’d accept a draw against him.”

  • Ian Tuckey

    HOPE IN HAAL

    Chelsea and Manchester City have reportedly 'made a move' for Borussia Dortmund marksman Erling Haaland – with Man Utd also monitoring the situation.

    Valued at around £150million by the Bundesliga outfit, the 20-year-old has no shortage of admirers following another stunning season.

    Goal machine Erling Haaland is being eyed by all of Europe's top sides, reports suggest

    The Norway international has banged in 31 goals in 29 games in all competitions this term, and is the Champions League's top scorer with ten strikes.

    Despite boasting a release clause of £65m in his contract that becomes active in 2022, clubs are queuing up to sign him in the upcoming transfer window.

    And according to Mundo Deportivo, Premier League giants Chelsea as well as Manchester City have already begun the task of trying to secure his services.

    It was reported earlier this month that the Blues were increasingly confident of nabbing Haaland, though German news outlet Sport BILD have declared that the West Londoners have 'no chance' of being able to capture him.

    But they are understood to face stiff competition from Real Madrid and Barcelona both eyeing up a possible move.

    United are also claimed to be an interested party, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer identifying Haaland as well as Harry Kane as possible targets.

  • Ian Tuckey

    UTD URGED TO TARGET RICE AND FOFANA

    Owen Hargreaves wants Manchester United to sign West Ham’s versatile England star Declan Rice and Leicester City centre-back Wesley Fofana. 

    Former England, United and Bayern Munich midfielder Hargreaves believes Rice, 22, would be an upgrade on Scott McTominay in mid-pitch.

    And he rates “fabulous” French “Ferrari” Fofana, 20, as the solution to Old Trafford chief Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s desire to strengthen his defensive cover.

      Speaking on Premier League productions, Hargreaves said: ‘I think Rice’s upside is off the charts. He has the potential to be anything and a lot better. 

    “I think he plays within himself at West Ham. ‘People don’t realise how big he is. He’s 6’3, so he looks like a centre back but he’s actually really good technically. 

    “Declan Rice doesn’t have to dictate the game for Manchester United, he can pass to the players who can make the difference and be good defensively.”

    And sked about Fofana, Hargreaves replied: “I’d love to see Manchester United get Fofana. ‘He’s a Ferrari, honestly. 

    “I’d throw whatever they’ve got left in the bank to get him. He’s a fabulous player.”

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