Pogba’s staying put
Paul Pogba will be going nowhere this summer, with Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reportedly telling Zinedine Zidane to forget about luring the French midfielder to Spain.
Real Madrid head coach Zidane spoke warmly of his compatriot at the weekend, fuelling speculation that he is out to entice Pogba to the Bernabeu.
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But The Times says that Solskjaer “rebuked” Zidane for using the press conference to wax lyrical about the 26-year-old World Cup winner.
“I don’t like to talk about other teams’ players,” said the Norwegian when asked about Zidane’s comments, adding that they “don’t really concern me because my thought of action then is to sit down and speak to Paul”.
Fond of the Frenchman
Asked if he was worried that Pogba could have his head turned by Zidane’s flattery, Solskjaer replied: “There is no issue. Paul is happy here, he’s going to play a big part. I have always said you would like to build your team round him and that hasn’t changed at all.
“He’s going to do his utmost here because he knows I’m very fond of him as a player and a person and he is important for us.”
Rakitic ready to leave
Barcelona are not going to offer a new contract to Ivan Rakitic, reports Spanish newspaper Sport - news that will prick up the ears of Man Utd and Inter Milan.
Both clubs have been eyeing the 31-year-old Croatia midfielder after realising his opportunities will be limited once Frankie de Jong arrives from Ajax.
It’s believed that Barca will listen to offers in the region of £45m, and that United are ready to meet that asking price.
Tug of war for Icardi
Talking of Inter Milan, the Daily Mirror says that Mauro Icardi will almost certainly leave the club in the summer, with Man Utd and Arsenal among the leading contenders to sign the 26-year-old striker.
Stripped of the captaincy earlier in the season, the Argentine was again left out of the Inter team that lost 1-0 to Lazio on Sunday, and relations between the frontman and Inter boss Luciano Spalletti have allegedly hit rock bottom.
Real Madrid and Juventus are also interested in signing Icardi, and a bidding war is expected to erupt next month.
Paris calling for Herrera
Ander Herrera has agreed a pre-contract agreement with Paris Saint-Germain, with the Spanish ace expected to head across the Channel this summer, reports talkSPORT.
The midfielder’s current deal runs out at the end of the season and although he has been in negotiations with United over a new contract, Herrera was “unimpressed with the offer from the Red Devils”, the news site claims.
United want Juan Mata to become a club ambassador at the end of his playing career, according to the Manchester Evening News (MEN).
The newspaper says that 30-year-old Mata is “locked in contract negotiations with the club over a new deal” and has been linked to Arsenal as he enters the last few weeks of his existing contract.
But it’s reported that Mata’s preference “is to stay at United” and that he could pen a two-year deal, with the first year as a member of the playing staff before taking on an ambassadorial role.
Technical director incoming?
The London Evening Standard says United are “closing in” on appointing their first technical director.
New full-time manager Solskjaer is “playing a part in the recruitment process”, and the Red Devils hope to have the technical director in place for the start of next season, the newspaper reports.
Premier League results, fixtures and TV guide
- Fulham 0 Manchester City 2
- Brighton and Hove Albion 0 Southampton 1
- Burnley 2 Wolverhampton Wanderers 0
- Crystal Palace 1 Huddersfield Town 0
- Leicester City 2 AFC Bournemouth 0
- Manchester United 2 Watford 1
- West Ham United 0 Everton 2
- Cardiff City 1 Chelsea 2
- Liverpool 2 Tottenham Hotspur 1
- Arsenal 2 Newcastle United 0
Fixtures Tuesday 2 April
- Watford vs. Fulham (7.45pm)
- Wolverhampton Wanderers vs. Manchester United (7.45pm, live on Sky Sports)
Wednesday 3 April
- Chelsea vs. Brighton and Hove Albion (7.45pm)
- Manchester City vs. Cardiff City (7.45pm, live on Sky Sports)
- Tottenham Hotspur vs. Crystal Palace (7.45pm)
Friday 5 April
- Southampton vs. Liverpool (8pm, live on Sky Sports)
Saturday 6 April
- AFC Bournemouth vs. Burnley (3pm)
- Huddersfield Town vs. Leicester City (3pm)
- Newcastle United vs. Crystal Palace (3pm)
Sunday 7 April
- Everton vs. Arsenal (2.05pm, live on Sky Sports)
Monday 8 April
- Chelsea vs. West Ham United (8pm, live on Sky Sports)
FA Cup semi-final fixtures
Saturday 6 April
- Manchester City vs. Brighton and Hove Albion (5.30pm, live on BBC One)
Sunday 7 April
- Watford vs. Wolves (4pm, live on BT Sport)
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