Real Madrid striker Mariano Diaz edges closer to Lyon transfer despite interest from Tottenham

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With the transfer window set to open next month, the frenetic nature of speculation has already begun.

Rumours are starting to gather pace and we take a look at the latest stories doing the rounds in the media.

Will any of the following deals happen?

Get in touch with your thoughts on Twitter and via Facebook.

MARIANO DIAZ

The talented Dominican Republic striker is edging closer to the Bernabeu exit door, with Lyon poised to conclude a deal for his services.

Having broken into the Real Madrid first-team last season after three seasons with the club’s Castilla side, Diaz is reportedly not part of Los Blancos’ plans moving forward and they are willing to cash in.

While Tottenham have shown some interest in the 23-year-old forward, Lyon are ready to table a bid in the region of €15m to bring Diaz to Ligue 1 as a direct replacement for wantaway star Alexandre Lacazette.

According to Marca, once Real are happy with the terms offered, Diaz is free to leave the Spanish capital for a new venture.

RATING: 8/10

SPORT360 VERDICT: Diaz showed flashes of his full potential for Real Madrid last term, netting five goals in 14 appearances – and clearly has an eye for goal. But, it looks like his future lies away from Spain and Lyon could be a perfect move for him.

MADRID, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 30: Mariano Diaz Mejia of Real Madrid CF celebrates after scoring Real's 5th and his 3rd goal during the Copa del Rey last of 32 match between Real Madrid and Cultural Leonesa at estadio Santiago Bernabeu on November 30, 2016 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

Ready to say goodbye to the Bernabeu: Diaz.

SAUL NIGUEZ

Barcelona are keeping tabs on the Atletico Madrid midfielder if their pursuit of Marco Verratti fails, according to AS.

Paris Saint-Germain star Verratti, who on Saturday denied giving any update on his future to La Gazzetta dello Sport, is Barca’s big summer target but Ernesto Valverde is monitoring Saul in case that deal doesn’t happen.

The 22-year-old central midfielder was a key man at the heart of Diego Simeone’s midfield last term, and while Atletico would be very reluctant to sell, the Catalan giants are expected to flex their financial muscles as soon as they find out about Verratti’s plans.

RATING: 8/10

SPORT360 VERDICT: Saul very much fits the mold of Barcelona’s midfield philosophy but don’t expect Atleti to allow the player to leave easily, even if big money is offered.

MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 06: Saul Niguez of Atletico de Madrid celebrates scoring their opening goal during the La Liga match between Club Atletico de Madrid and SD Eibar at Estadio Vicente Calderon on May 6, 2017 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)

Star performer: Saul.

DIEGO COSTA

While Atletico may have to face up to the prospect of losing Saul, they are reportedly a step closer to bringing the Chelsea hitman back to Madrid.

Costa recently revealed his willingness to leave Stamford Bridge club and return to Atleti, the club where he spent four years between 2010 and 2014.

According to AS, Blues boss Antonio Conte wants to move for the Spanish forward sooner rather than later and it is now up to Atleti to put a package together to secure the deal.

Although Antoine Griezmann is now staying with the Red and Whites, Atleti are not expected to pass-up the opportunity to re-sign him.

RATING: 8/10

SPORT360 VERDICT: Costa hasn’t been short of interest since declaring his desire to leave west London and is likely to do everything within his powers to force a move to his former employers.

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 27: Diego Costa of Chelsea celebrates scoring his sides first goal during the Emirates FA Cup Final between Arsenal and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium on May 27, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Instrumental last season: Costa.

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What can Chelsea fans expect from Tiemoue Bakayoko if they sign the Monaco midfield ace?

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Antonio Conte wants the France international to become part of his team next season and Chelsea are reportedly close to agreeing a big-money deal which will see Bakayoko move to Stamford Bridge.

The defensive midfielder was one of Monaco’s standout players last term, helping the French Riviera club to Ligue 1 title glory and success in the Champions League.

And with the added commitment of Champions League football next season to go side-by-side with their Premier League defence, Chelsea feel Bakayoko would be a welcome addition to an engine room which already features N’Golo Kante.

In the video below, both Monaco boss Leonardo Jardim and France manager Didier Deschamps compliment the midfielder’s attributes.

Will he be a good signing for the champions?

Share your views on the former Rennes star, get in touch on Twitter and via Facebook.

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Arsenal close in on Lyon's £49 million striker Alexandre Lacazette as further talks held

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Transfer speculation is dominating the football agenda every day this summer with rumours aplenty about players from throughout Europe’s big leagues.

Will any of the following deals happen?

Get in touch with your thoughts on Twitter and via Facebook.

ALEXANDRE LACAZETTE

The Daily Telegraph claims Arsenal have held further talks with Lyon over signing Alexandre Lacazette for what would be a club-record £49 million.

The Gunners do not expect to win the race for Monaco sensation Kylian Mbappe and are therefore channelling their energy and funds into capturing his fellow France striker, who scored 37 times for Lyon last season.

RATING: 8/10

SPORT360 VERDICT

The odds of Mbappe joining Arsenal are slim at best so it’s no surprise that they’re pursuing other options. Ever since Antoine Griezmann decided to stay at Atletico Madrid, scuppering a move for Lacazette to the La Liga outfit, Arsenal emerged as the ideal destination for the 26-year-old.

The club have been linked to the striker since 2014 and after the last three prolific seasons in Ligue 1, he seems primed for the next step in his career. His pace and movement will suit Arsenal perfectly and his clinical finishing is something they have lacked since Robin van Persie’s departure.


TIMOUE BAKAYOKO

Chelsea have agreed a deal in principle with AS Monaco for Tiemoue Bakayoko, according to the Evening Standard.

The Premier League champions hope to complete the £35.1m signing next week with the 22-year-old midfielder a possible replacement for Nemanja Matic who has been linked with a move away from the club.

RATING: 6/10

SPORT360 VERDICT

There’s definitely something to this story and even if Matic remains at Stamford Bridge, you can see Antonio Conte favouring a more mobile defensive midfielder (not that he needs it with N’golo Kante covering every blade of grass anyway).

The fee quoted is not too steep but it remains to be seen if Chelsea are willing to spend that much in a position that doesn’t need immediate attention. Surely a top class striker is the main concern at the moment and perhaps another winger while Conte also seems determined to bring in left wing-back Alex Sandro.

SERGIO AGUERO

Paris Saint-Germain are preparing a bid in excess of £60m for Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero according to the Times.

The 29-year-old has dropped down the pecking order in Pep Guardiola’s eyes with Gabriel Jesus emerging as the Spaniard’s first choice.

Meanwhile, a possible move for Borussia Dortmund’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang would further limit the Argentine’s playing time. His departure would also help fund the transfer of the Bundesliga’s top scorer.

RATING: 5/10

SPORT360 VERDICT

It’s common knowledge that Aguero isn’t perfectly suited for Guardiola’s specific tactics. The striker isn’t happy with his lack of playing time and could well be keen on a move.

PSG isn’t a bad destination at all but it’ll be interesting to see how he fits in alongside Ligue 1 top scorer Edinson Cavani. It’s definitely feasible but there hasn’t been too much on this narrative yet.

Is Aguero on his way out?

Is Aguero on his way out?

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