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Barcelona To Spend Big This Summer

Barcelona sporting director Robert Fernandez has said the club will make “big-name signings” as they look to strengthen new coach Ernesto Valverde’s squad.

After missing out on the Liga title to Real Madrid last season and losing to Juventus in the Champions League quarterfinals, Barca understand that they need to refresh and strengthen a squad that looked a little jaded at times last season.

With Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez will both be 30 during the upcoming season, Fernandez understands that the Messi window is beginning to close.

So this is not a rebuilding project for Barcelona. They want to invest in players who can improve the team immediately.

Strikers Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Cristiano Ronaldo and Kylian Mbappe have attracted a lot of attention already this summer with potential record breaking transfers to other clubs.

But the best striker potentially on the move this summer is Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski, and the German giants are moving quickly to try and keep him at the Allianz Arena by threatening to go to FIFA if clubs approach Lewandowski without their permission, amid speculation that Manchester United and Chelsea have held talks with the striker.

Bayern have gone so far as issuing a statement to Sky Deutschland warning clubs over Lewandowski.

Premier League Summer Transfers

zlatan-billboardWith the 2016/17 Premier League finished, the summer transfer window is now open, with clubs able to announce deals that will, in the case of those from outside England, be ratified from 10 June, 2017.

This summer’s window will close on 31 August and we will bring all the latest signings made from the Premier League as the 20 clubs are expected to spend over £1.5B this summer. s.

Sead Kolasinac (Schalke, free)

Asmir Begovic (Chelsea, £10m)

Pascal Gross (Ingolstadt, undisclosed)
Josh Kerr (Celtic, undisclosed)
Mathew Ryan (Valencia, undisclosed)

Wantaway AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma has faced the backlash of angry supporters during Italy Under 21s’ recent clash with Denmark Under 21s at the European Championships.

News spread this week that the 18-year-old stopper would not be signing a new contract at San Siro and would instead be seeking pastures new.

Teenager Donnarumma was given his opportunity by Milan back in 2015 and has since established himself as first choice, though angry fans have greeted the latest news with a torrent of anger and the throwing of fake wads of cash.

Cristiano Ronaldo leaving Real Madrid would be an “irreparable loss” according to La Liga president Javier Tebas, who is desperate for the Spanish champions to keep the four-time Ballon d’Or winner.

Reports in Portugal broke on Friday that the 32-year-old wants to leave Real Madrid only weeks after leading the club to back-to-back Champions League titles in Cardiff.

It came days after he was formally accused of defrauding the Spanish taxpayer of €14m, leaving Ronaldo unwilling to continue playing in Spain, with Portuguese papers calling the decision “irreversible”.

A Peak At Ed Woodward’s Wish List

According to the Manchester Evening News, Ed Woodward has a list of four ‘fantasy’ signings that he would like to make at Manchester United before he leaves the club.

Woodward was appointed as the club’s executive vice-chairman in 2012, and was placed in charge of transfers at Old Trafford the following summer.

His initial attempts at signing players were embarrassing as United failed to sign Cesc Fabregas, Thiago Alcantara and Gareth Bale in Woodward’s first year. When United ended up over-paying for Marouane Fellaini, Woodward and United were ridiculed by fans across Europe.

The news that Cristiano Ronaldo wants to leave Spain and, therefore, Real Madrid, has set alarm bells ringing at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.

Ronaldo is currently playing in the Confederations Cup with the Portugal national team and the European Champions are waiting until after the Confederations Cup final on July 2 to sit down and talk with their superstar.

In the meantime both manager Zinedine Zidane and captain Sergio Ramos are said to have called Ronaldo and urged him to stay at Madrid.

It will be interesting to see if Zidane, who has a reputation for exceptional man-management skills can persuade his talisman to stay at the club.

“Who doesn’t want to play for a club as big as Barcelona?”

Those were the words of Ajax defender Davinson Sanchez when he was asked about reports linking him with the Catalan club. Millions of kids across the globe would presumably give the same response.

But Davinson’s rhetorical question does not echo the thoughts of every professional footballer. Many are unwilling to join Barca to become simply a squad player.

“Barcelona sought me out, but what point is there in joining and then sitting on the bench behind Messi, Suarez and Neymar?” Napoli’s Dries Mertens said.

Arsenal Make Bid For Alexandre Lacazette

It looks like Arsenal have settled on French international Alexandre Lacazette as their replacement for wantaway striker Alexis Sanchez after Lacazette’s club Lyon acknowledged that they had received a “very nice” bid from the Premier League side.

Arsenal are reported to have made an offer that gets close to the £50m valuation that Lyon have put on the at 26-year-old.

Lacazette, who has scored 91 goals in the last three seasons, is a very similar player to Sanchez in that he is comfortable playing across tall he attacking positions.

Chelsea have moved to downplay reports that manager Antonio Conte is upset of the Blues lack of activity in the summer transfer market.

With Manchester City and United both already making signing players, Conte is said to be growing frustrated with the likes of club director Marina Granovskaia and technical director Michael Emenalo over the Premier League champion’s lack of signings so far in the transfer market.

Chelsea have yet to make a major signing for their senior squad but are chasing deals for Everton’s Romelu Lukaku and Monaco’s Tiemoue Bakayoko after rivals Manchester City have already made £78m worth of signings.