Ronaldo wants United return: Daniel Taylor writes in the Observer this morning that Cristiano Ronaldo has informed Manchester United that he does want to come back to Old Trafford – though not this summer. United have received indications from their former hero that he wants to end his career with them, and as such a move next summer is being contemplated by the United hierarchy.
Paper Round’s view: Taylor is one of the most respected scribes out there – especially on the subjects of United and Ronaldo – and this will be a well sourced report. From Ronaldo’s perspective, it’s handy to keep his options open and he may well want to come back to England. We will have to wait and watch to see what happens.
Bale deal to total £183m: The Sunday Mirror lay out the full financial scale of the world record transfer that will soon take Gareth Bale to Real Madrid. The Spanish giants will pay £86m to sign the Wales international, while his six-year contract will be worth a stunning £97m to Bale himself. He will sign a six-year deal worth £310,000 per week, though Spain’s 52 per cent top rate of tax means he will take home just £150,000, the poor lamb.
Paper Round’s view: Barcelona boss Tata Martino yesterday said that the Bale deal was “a lack of respect to the world in general” and it’s hard to avoid a similar conclusion when looking at the bare numbers. These are extraordinary figures, but ultimately they are dictated by the market and we will only know if Madrid have overpaid when Bale stars putting on that famous white shirt.
Chelsea give up on Rooney, seal Eto’o deal: Jose Mourinho claims Chelsea will make a third bid for Wayne Rooney following Monday night’s game between Manchester United and the Blues, but according to the Sunday Telegraph, behind the scenes Chelsea have already given up on the England international and will instead sign the great Samuel Eto’o. Negotiations have been conducted with his club, Anzhi Makhachkala, during talks to sign Willian for £30m.
Paper Round’s view: Eto’o thrived under Mourinho at Inter and a striker of his calibre would grace the Premier League. At 32 he is no long-term option but with United remain steadfast over their refusal to sell Rooney, the Cameroonian is a fine Plan B.
Arsenal’s Krul intentions: Arsene Wenger’s last-minute trolley dash will include a keeper, according to the Sun on Sunday, who report that Newcastle United’s Tim Krul is the subject of interest from the Gunners. Arsenal are already trying to bring in Yohan Cabaye from St James’ Park in what remains of the window.
Paper Round’s view: This seems unlikely. If Arsenal do sign a keeper it’ll surely be one with more experience to challenge Wojciech Szczesny, while Newcastle are already angry over Wenger’s pursuit of Cabaye and are hardly likely to sell their number one keeper this close to the end of the window.
Spurs to seal Lamela deal: The Mail on Sunday reports that Tottenham are closing in on the £25m signing of Roma forward Erik Lamela, though he will only be allowed to leave once the Italians have signed a replacement.
Paper Round’s view: There is talk in football circles that Lamela is the superior player to Willian, who this week underwent a medical with Spurs, only to choose to move to Chelsea. Lamela’s arrival will be a big coup for Spurs.