Manchester United have received a boost to their chances of landing Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann, as reports from Spain suggest the Frenchman might be on the move this summer.
Asked whether Atletico’s players might be snapped up by top European clubs after their good run in La Liga and the Champions League, Spanish football expert Guillem Balague said on Sky Sports [via The Sun] that mostly Griezmann might be the only player who could move from Spain’s capital.
“[Atletico’s] plan is to [keep their players]. Antonio Griezmann is perhaps the only one in doubt,” said Balague. “Simeone wants to take the team to the new stadium next season and Griezmann isn’t rushing to leave either – but he’s going to wait and see what offers arrive, and then take a decision. Everyone else is planning to stay on at Atletico, so we’ll see how the summer pans out.”
Reports in the Daily Mail have suggested that Manchester United are interested in Griezmann, after their star signing Memphis Depay flopped in his debut season, scoring just two goals in this season’s Premier League campaign.
Bayern Munich confirm Hummels talks
Another Borussia Dortmund player is likely to move to Munich, as Bayern chief Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has confirmed that the club are in talks with Mats Hummels.
“I can basically confirm what Watzke said, that Mats is considering Bayern,” Rummenigge was quoted as saying in German outlet Sport1.de. “We have got to bear in mind that he has a contract and I would not like to damage the very good relationship that we have built up with Dortmund over the past two years by making one imprudent remark.”
Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge confirms before flying to Madrid that they are in talks with Dortmund captain Mats Hummels.
— Archie Rhind-Tutt (@archiert1) April 26, 2016
Previously, Bayern Munich have benefited from buying other top stars from Dortmund, with the likes of German play-maker Mario Gotze and Polish striker Robert Lewandowski making the journey from the Ruhr valley to Bavaria.
However, it will be homecoming in Hummels’s case, as he himself hails from Munich, and started out in Bayern Munich’s academy before moving to Dortmund in 2009.
Chelsea join other European giants for Vermaelen
With Gerard Pique and Javier Mascherano being the two preferred centre backs at Barcelona, Thomas Vermaelen has not been getting as many chances as he would have liked at the Catalan club. Now, reports from Spain suggest the Blaugrana are trying to cash in on the injury-prone centre back, with interests coming in from all quarters of Europe.
According to a report in Spanish outlet Fichajes, Premier League giants Chelsea are the latest club to enter the race to land the former Arsenal defender.
Vermaelen has had injury issues since his £15 million move from Arsenal two years back, and that is pushing Barcelona to cash in on the defender. The 30-year-old has mainly been used in cup competitions, with only 11 appearances in La Liga so far this season.
Chelsea, who are set to part ways with long serving captain John Terry, are on the lookout for a new defender in the summer.
Unsettled Ter-Stegen puts Liverpool on Alert
Guillem Balague has been churning out the rumours yet again, and this time he has named Barcelona goalkeeper Marc Andre Ter-Stegen as a possible summer transfer.
Ter-Stegen, who has long been known to have attracted the interest of Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, is said to be unsettled at Barcelona playing second fiddle to Claudio Bravo. While Bravo has cemented his place La Liga matches, Ter-Stegen gets to start in the Champions League and the Copa Del Rey matches.
However, the German keeper is not too happy at being the No.2 at the club and will speak to the Barcelona bosses at the end of the season about his current predicament, according to Balague.
“Ter Stegen wants to speak to the club at the end of the season and say to them: ‘I’m not happy with this situation. I don’t want to be No 2.’,” Balague said on Sky Sports. “It is an interesting position that Luis Enrique finds himself in because he thinks Ter Stegen will become a better player – but the goalkeeper that guarantees him consistency is Claudio Bravo.”
Dortmund chief paves way for Gotze return
Although a number of Borussia Dortmund fans had unfurled a banner that asked Gotze to “p**s off”, the club’s chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke believes that there is always a place for the German World Cup winner in the Dortmund side.
Gotze had moved from Dortmund to title rivals Bayern Munich in the summer of 2013, but has not been getting as many chances at the Bavarian club since then. His long term injuries have kept him out of action for a while, but there have also been reports of a possible rift with manager Pep Guardiola.
However, Gotze has a little more than a year left on his current contract, and has reportedly refused an extension at the club. This could force Bayern’s hand to cash in on him this summer.
“If he’s on the market, it’s clear if we discuss about him,” said Watzke [via Goal.com]. “The door is always open for every player who comes from Dortmund. If he returns we have to talk with the fans and he has to explain how he left for Bayern. But I don’t think that they won’t give him a second chance.”