Premier League trio eye Llorente: According to the Sunday Mirror, Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea are all interested in signing Juventus striker Fernando Llorente, who only joined the Italian giants this summer but is already struggling for a first-team place. Given how unhappy the Spaniard seems in Serie A, a January transfer is not out of the question and clubs across Europe have been alerted.
Paper Round’s view: Though he has struggled at Juve, and before that had a fallow season at Athletic Bilbao due to a contractual dispute, Llorente is still a very potent striker with a skill-set suited to the Premier League. This would be no surprise at all.
Madrid to pay Ronaldo twice as much as Bale to ward off United: The Mail on Sunday’s Pete Jenson, who chronicles Spanish football very carefully, says Real Madrid are to offer Cristiano Ronaldo a contract worth over £76 million over five years to stop him courting possible interest from former club Manchester United. Ronaldo would then have his ego massaged by the knowledge he earns twice as much as the subject of the new world record transfer, and more than PSG’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who currently earns the biggest salary in football.
Paper Round’s view: Ronaldo’s claims to be unhappy last season always smacked of a negotiating position and it seems as though he may have leveraged United’s interest perfectly to secure the biggest contract in football history. Well played, Cristiano.
Arsenal to move for Rooney again: Not content with signing Mesut Ozil, Arsenal are ready to sanction another huge move in January, writes the Mail on Sunday, with a renewed assault for Wayne Rooney on the cards. The paper says Arsenal have around £30m to play with and hope the Ozil deal has shown Rooney they mean business when it comes to winning trophies.
Paper Round’s view: Another week, another twist on Rooney’s future. The stories around the England striker are becoming as boring as they are inevitable, and this has all the hallmarks of a space-filler. Move on, nothing to see here.
United to battle Chelsea for Barkley: Yesterday’s Paper Round led with the news that Chelsea are eyeing a £20m move for Everton’s brilliant young midfielder Ross Barkley, but today the Sunday Express reports that former Toffees boss David Moyes will also be in the hunt should Barkley come on the market. Bids would have to start at around the £20m mark for a player once targeted by Sir Alex Ferguson when only 17.
Paper Round’s view: If there is a bidding war for Barkley then you can bet Moyes will be involved, given his role in nurturing his talent at Goodison Park. Everton will be extremely reluctant to sell and if Barkley continues to perform as he has this season, then £20m will be looking a little low by the end of the campaign.
Tottenham want El Shaarawy: Not content with their huge recruitment drive in the summer, the Sunday Mirror says Spurs are hoping to spent more of the Gareth Bale money on Milan and Italy forward Stephan El Shaarawy. He is in Tottenham’s price range at around £20m.
Paper Round’s view: Along with Mario Balotelli, El Shaarawy is Milan’s great big hope in attack and they would be hugely reluctant to let him leave. Spurs can try, but it seems likely only a bigger club would be able to prise the 20-year-old from San Siro.