Man City plot £150 million move for Chelsea star Eden Hazard

David Cooper 28/01/2018
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The transfer window is heating up and we have our daily transfer gossip column to keep you in the loop. Here, we look at the top headlines doing the rounds in Europe’s media on Sunday.

EDEN HAZARD

Manchester City are ready to launch a £150 million bid for Chelsea’s Eden Hazard, according to the Daily Mirror.

Hazard has reportedly rejected a new long-term contract from the Blues, as he wants to wait until the end of the season to see if Real Madrid or City table a bid for his services.

The 26-year-old is said to be one of City’s prime summer transfer targets, and although they refused to pay big money for Alexis Sanchez, they believe Hazard represents significant value.

While Hazard is happy under Antonio Conte at Chelsea, it is believed he is ready for a change after nearly six seasons at Stamford Bridge.

RATING

VERDICT: 6/10

With City set to ramp up their attempts to sign a number of key players during the summer transfer window, it looks unlikely they will fork out over £100 million on Hazard.

Although he would add even more pace and class to a star-studded attack at the Etihad Stadium, Chelsea and Conte will do what they can to keep hold of their prized asset for next season.

DANIEL STURRIDGE

Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge looks set to sign for Inter Milan, according to Daily Mirror.

The England forward is chasing game time in a bid to increase his chances of going to this summer’s World Cup.

Despite a lack of minutes in recent months, the 28-year-old is still a class act and would be a welcome addition to any squad.

At his best, Sturridge was one of the first names on the Liverpool and England team sheets – but since 2015 injuries have curtailed his development as a player.

RATING: 7/10

VERDICT

It may be hard to usurp Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford, Tammy Abraham or Jamie Vardy for the four striker positions in the England squad, but the Birmingham native needs to chase first team football if he is to be named in Gareth Southgate’s side for Russia.

If Inter take the bait on his wages, then this would be a welcome move for a player who still has the firepower to bolster any attack.

GettyImages-867439998

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Aubameyang can go if Arsenal meet €70m asking price, say Dortmund as striker is booed by fans

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Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was jeered by his own fans and told he can leave Borussia Dortmund if Arsenal meet the asking price, the German club’s director of sport Michael Zorc confirmed on Saturday.

Having been dropped for the last two matches, Aubameyang made his first start for a month in Dortmund’s 2-2 Bundesliga draw at home to Freiburg on Saturday.

He headed over the bar in the first-half with his single effort of the game in a poor performance.

Aubameyang was booed by home fans for each of his 19 touches of the ball while fans made their discontent clear.

“No player is bigger than our club,” said a banner unfurled by angry Dortmund supporters.

Dortmund have reportedly rejected a second bid by Arsenal of 58 million euros ($72m) with the German club thought to be holding out for 70 million euros for their top-scorer.

“We know that Aubameyang wants to leave,” said Zorc. “We must not forget that he is already in his fifth year in Dortmund.

“We have made it clear that we are ready to realise a transfer when our wishes are completely fulfilled. Arsenal has made several attempts so far and we have rejected them.”

Aubameyang has scored 141 goals in 212 games for Dortmund in all competitions since his arrival in 2013.

“I cannot say how it will turn out: either our demands are fulfilled or he stays here until the summer,” added Zorc.

“This has been communicated to his family and everyone accepts it.”

Aubameyang’s father, also his agent, is pushing for the switch to Arsenal to replace Alexis Sanchez, but time is running out with the transfer window to close at midnight (2300 GMT) on Wednesday.

Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Burki slammed home fans for booing their own team — especially Aubameyang.

“People came to the stadium to whistle their own team — they should stay at home,” fumed Burki.

“That is no support — these are people who have no idea about football, they probably have nothing better to do.”

Zorc pointed out Aubameyang was disciplined twice by Dortmund in January — which means he has fallen offside with the club four times in the last 16 months.

He was also dropped in late 2017 for coming late to training and also in November 2016 for jetting to Milan just before a Champions League game.

“We have to look at things soberly — he had two misconducts in January,” said Zorc.

“Once he did not show up at an important team meeting and then did not train well before a game in Berlin, so we sanctioned him.

“In the meantime, we have been able to calm the situation. We had talks and now we assume that he is fully focused.”

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Roma seemingly resigned to losing striker Edin Dzeko to Chelsea in transfer window

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Roma coach Eusebio Di Francesco said he was reluctant to part with Edin Dzeko, adding that he had only just become aware of the Serie A club’s need to sell.

Chelsea are reported to be closing in on Bosnian ace Dzeko and Brazilian Emerson Palmieri for a combined €50m.

But Di Francesco said he would prefer to hang on the 2016-2017 Serie A top scorer, who netted 29 last season and had proved his worth this term with ten, including the equaliser in last week’s 1-1 draw against Sampdoria.

“I don’t know what the financial situation is, I only came to know of this possibility recently. But we do this job and we must be ready for anything,” said the Roma coach.

“It’s normal that if it were to happen, it would be tied to the financial fair play and other issues.

“It hasn’t happened yet. I saw great support from the crowd and I hope to see the same tomorrow night.”

There has been growing discontent among Roma fans at the lack of winter transfer signings with two banners:

“As Roma is not a game” and “Enough illusions, buy the champions!” hanging outside the Stadio Olimpico on the eve of Sunday’s game against Sampdoria.

“In the case of a Dzeko sale I asked the club to sign Leo Messi, but they told me it wasn’t possible,” joked the Roma coach.

“It’s not as if I or Roma want to lose our most important players.

“All I can say is that I have Dzeko at my disposal and I hope he remains for the rest of the season,” Di Francesco added.

“I do my job and try to do it the best I can. There are some clear things that have been said to me, so either you accept those or you go home.

“I chose to be the coach of Roma, even during difficult times.”

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