Rumour Has It: PSG considering move for unsettled Chelsea striker Lukaku

By Sports Desk January 10, 2022

Romelu Lukaku cast his Chelsea future in doubt with a recent interview – and the unsettled striker may now be offered a route out of Stamford Bridge by Paris Saint-Germain.

The 28-year-old revealed his regret at leaving Inter for Chelsea and questioned boss Thomas Tuchel's tactics, leading to him being dropped for the 2-2 draw with Liverpool.

Lukaku has returned for the Blues' two matches since, but doubts remain over whether he will still be a Chelsea player come the start of next season.

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PSG look certain to lose Kylian Mbappe at the end of the campaign as the Real Madrid target fast approaches the end of his contract at the Parc des Princes.

The Ligue 1 giants are on the lookout for possible replacements and, according to El Nacional, Lukaku is one of those being considered by the club's wealthy backers.

The report suggests PSG are willing to pay €90million (£75.1m) to persuade Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich to part ways with the club's all-time record signing.

Lukaku, who apologised for giving the explosive interview in December, has scored eight goals in 20 appearances since returning to west London five months ago.

ROUND-UP

– Tottenham have decided to sell Steven Bergwijn this month amid interest from several clubs, according to Fabrizio Romano. Ajax are said to be among the sides to have already made an offer for the Netherlands international.

– Anthony Martial wants to leave Manchester United and has been touted as a possible target for Barcelona. But Spanish outlet Sport claims that, while Barca are eager to strengthen in the final third, Martial is not on their radar in this window.

– Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger is wanted by a number of Europe's heavyweight clubs. According to Foot Mercato, PSG are prepared to pay more than the likes of Bayern Munich and Real Madrid, but the latter remains the Germany international's preferred choice.

– A rumoured target for Chelsea and Bayern, Sergino Dest's Barcelona future may become clearer in the coming days. El Nacional claims the defender's representatives are set to hold talks with the Catalan giants.

– After being jeered off the pitch by his own supporters in Tottenham's 3-1 FA Cup win over Morecambe on Sunday, The Athletic reports that club-record signing Tanguy Ndombele is hopeful of ending his tumultuous spell in north London this month.

– The Athletic also reports Aston Villa are now the favourites to sign Everton full-back Lucas Digne, despite previous interest from Chelsea. Newcastle United have also been linked, but Digne is apparently not considering a move to the relegation-threatened side.

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    Real Madrid have turned their attention to Milan forward Rafael Leao after being snubbed by Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe.

    The 22-year-old Portuguese winger scored 14 goals and contributed 12 assists in 42 games in all club competitions this season, after 13 goals combined in his first two campaigns in Milan.

    His rapid ascension has seen him fitted with an eye-opening price tag, with ESPN reporting his release clause is at €150million, and that Madrid will offer somewhere in the range of €120m.

     

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    Leao provided an assist in Milan's Champions League loss to Liverpool, scored a goal in their defeat to Atletico Madrid, and tallied three goals and six assists in the last six games of the Serie A season to seal the Scudetto.

    With his lofty price tag, it is fair to assume Leao is the Spanish giants' top target in the upcoming transfer window, although he is not the only big-money signing reportedly in the works for Madrid.

    ESPN is also reporting Madrid's €80m move for Monaco midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni has been held up by a tax issue, and if it is to fall through, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool are all circling.

     

    ROUND-UP

    – The Daily Mail is reporting Everton striker Richarlison has strong interest from Tottenham, Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain.

    – With Burnley relegated from the Premier League, the Telegraph is reporting Everton and West Ham will compete for the services of Clarets striker Maxwel Cornet.

    – According to the Evening Standard, Harry Kane no longer wishes to leave Tottenham and is now ready to open talks for a new contract.

    Chelsea have been told they will need to pay £45m to pry Marc Cucurella away from Brighton and Hove Albion, according to the Sun.

    – Todofichajes is reporting Liverpool would like RB Leipzig star Christopher Nkunku to be their long-term replacement for Mohamed Salah, should the Egyptian leave the club, with his contract expiring in 2023.

  • Casillas: Real Madrid have to 'put the icing on the cake' with Champions League win Casillas: Real Madrid have to 'put the icing on the cake' with Champions League win

    Real Madrid legend Iker Casillas believes the club's run to Saturday's Champions League final will mean nothing if they eventually lose to Liverpool.

    With 725 matches played, Casillas trails only Raul Gonzalez for appearances made for Los Blancos, winning the Champions League three times with the club, including the famous La Decima in 2014.

    Madrid have made a dramatic run to Saturday's fun, coming from behind on aggregate in all three knockout ties to eliminate Paris Saint-German, Chelsea and Manchester City.

    Writing for the Player's Tribune, Casillas insisted it will matter little if Liverpool lift the trophy on Saturday instead.

    "The comebacks are very good but now we have to get it. We need the icing on the cake," Casillas wrote for the Players Tribune. "If you don't get that icing, the cake won't be complete, right?

    "If the cup does not reach the showcases, nobody is going to remember what happened with PSG, with Chelsea and with Manchester City. To be exciting, it has to be until the end, with the prize.

    "One step away from glory for the 14th time, people think that winning the Champions League is easy and it is not. If just reaching a Champions League semi-final is something incredible, when you get one, two or three cups you have to be proud."

    The 41-year-old singled out Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who has been a pivotal figure in both their LaLiga title and run to Saturday's final, with 21 clean sheets in 50 games across all competitions.

    While insisting Courtois is the best goalkeeper in the world, that Casillas' athletic and versatile style in goal was long regarded as an inspiration is something he also takes pride in.

    "A separate paragraph is for Courtois, and I think no one can argue that today he is the best goalkeeper in the world," he said. "It's the same thing I think of Karim [Benzema]. To rise even higher, you have to get that award. And he deserves it like nobody else, since he has been essential for Madrid to reach the final in Paris.

    "I am proud that, as I did with [Luis] Arconada, he has grown up inspired by my stops, by my videos. There will be another kid out there who will want to be like Courtois tomorrow. But, in short, I am flattered to have been a part of his life."

  • Berizzo confirmed as Chile national team boss Berizzo confirmed as Chile national team boss

    Eduardo Berizzo has been hired as the new head coach of the Chile national team, the Chilean Football Federation confirmed on Thursday.

    Berizzo’s first coaching experience came as an assistant under Marcelo Bielsa with La Roja between 2007 and 2010, and will now be tasked with rejuvenating a team in generational transition.

    Following a quarter-final finish at the 2021 Copa America, Chile finished five points off the inter-confederation playoff spot in CONMEBOL qualifying for this year’s World Cup, dismissing Reinaldo Rueda and Martin Lasarte in the process.

    Berizzo is coming into this role after a disappointing tenure of his own with the Paraguay national team, where two quarter-final eliminations on penalties at Copa America tournaments in 2019 and 2021 were punctuated by an eighth-placed finish in South American qualification for this year’s World Cup.

    "The Chilean Football Federation, headed by its president Pablo Milad, informs that it has reached a complete agreement with Eduardo Berizzo and his staff, so that he directs the Chilean National Team for the next process," the Chilean governing body said in a statement.

    "Berizzo has had an outstanding career as a player with the Argentine national team, and as a coach he showed important steps for Estudiantes de la Plata, O'Higgins de Rancagua, a team with which he was crowned champion of Chilean soccer, and also with Celta de Vigo, Seville and Athletic from Spain. His last experience was in the Paraguayan soccer team."

    La Roja will next face South Korea in the upcoming international window, before taking on Tunisia in the opening game of the Kirin Cup.

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