Rumour Has It: Arsenal determined to sign Fiorentina's Vlahovic despite £150m transfer bill

By Sports Desk January 11, 2022

Arsenal have fallen out of the Premier League's top tier in recent years.

But the Gunners are determined to re-emerge under manager Mikel Arteta.

With Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang set to leave, Arsenal are ready to spend.

TOP STORY – ARSENAL DETERMINED TO LAND VLAHOVIC

Arsenal are determined to land Dusan Vlahovic despite the Serbian wanting £300,000 (€360,000) a week in wages, says the Daily Mail.

The Fiorentina forward is being chased by a host of clubs but the Gunners are ready to sign him despite a transfer bill around £150 million (€180m), with La Viola asking for a £58m (€70m) fee.

Juventus, Tottenham, Manchester City and Manchester United have all been linked with the 21-year-old.

 

ROUND-UP

- Manchester City could make a move for Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric claims El Nacional. The Croatian is not happy with the terms offered by Madrid on a new deal with his current contract set to expire at the end of this season.

- Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger prefers a move to Real Madrid over Paris Saint-Germain when his current contract expires according to Football London. Both clubs have offered deals to the Germany international.

- The Mirror reports that Edinson Cavani has committed to Manchester United for the remainder of the season after discussions with interim manager Ralf Rangnick.

- Barcelona have approached former Chelsea midfielder Oscar about joining the Catalans, claims TNT Sports Brasil. Oscar is currently contracted with Chinese club Shanghai Port.

- Tottenham are ready to sell record signing Tanguy Ndombele during the January transfer window, reports the Daily Mail. PSG, Milan, Roma, Lyon, Barcelona and Newcastle United are among the clubs interested in Ndombele according to the Star.

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    Nicolo Zaniolo is hoping to savour a childhood dream after his goal secured Roma the Europa Conference League title on Wednesday, defeating Feyenoord 1-0.

    Zaniolo's goal proved the difference in a tightly-contested final in Tirana, chesting down Gianluca Manini's pass over the Feyenoord defence to poke the ball home past Justin Bijlow in the 32nd minute.

    The 22-year-old scored the hat-trick to ignite the Giallorossi's comeback against Bodo/Glimt in the quarter-final second leg, making his winner in Tirana that much more fitting.

    Post-match, he was adamant Roma can build something lasting upon this maiden European triumph, after losses in the 1984 European Cup and 1991 UEFA Cup finals.

    "It's all wonderful, we want to enjoy this moment," Zaniolo told Sky Sports Italia. "I made my dream as a child come true, winning a European competition.

    "There are no words, the fans are fantastic, and the victory is all for them. After this victory something important is being born. We are strong and we have not yet understood how much.

    "I dedicate the goal and the victory to my whole family – my father, my mother, my grandmother, everyone. They have always been close to me."

    The Giallorossi absorbed and defended for the majority of the match after Zaniolo's goal but more than the nature of the performance, the victory has an added dimension for captain Lorenzo Pellegrini.

    Before two seasons with Sassuolo, the 25-year-old progressed through Roma's academy, grew up supporting the club and eventually returned.

    Pellegrini admitted it was hard to process the achievement with that in mind, but wanted to taste more success with the club.

    "We are a real team, we proved that," Pellegrini told Sky Sport Italia. "Now we have to celebrate and then start again, which is always difficult after a great victory, but a real team wins, celebrates and starts again.

    "I said yesterday that I never would’ve imagined at the age of 25 to achieve this with the Roma jersey and the captain’s armband. It is a wonderful moment.

    "Now we must celebrate, fix this moment in our minds and make it happen again in future."

  • 'I feel 100 per cent Roma' - Mourinho basks in Roma's Conference League final triumph 'I feel 100 per cent Roma' - Mourinho basks in Roma's Conference League final triumph

    Jose Mourinho has declared he is "100 per cent Roma" after their 1-0 Europa Conference League final triumph over Feyenoord on Wednesday.

    Playing in their first continental showpiece since losing the 1984 European Cup final to Liverpool, Nicolo Zaniolo scored the only goal for the Giallorossi, poking the ball home in the 32nd minute after chesting down Gianluca Mancini's ball over the top of the defence.

    The victory in Tirana gave the Serie A club their first major European trophy.

    In his first season at Roma, Mourinho has now emulated Giovanni Trapattoni's feat of winning a European trophy in three separate decades.

    Despite famously leaving in the following off-season after winning the Champions League with Porto and Inter, the 59-year-old asserted he wants to stay and build on this success in the Italian capital.

    "I remain, even if some voice or offer arrives," Mourinho said. "I want to stay in Rome and we need to understand what our owners want to do in the next season because we can follow up on this story, we must define the direction for the next season.

    "I feel like a Roma player, like I feel like an Inter fan, a Chelsista, I'm crazy about Real Madrid, but for all due respect for the clubs I have worked for, I feel 100 per cent Roma.

    "The beautiful thing about my career beyond winning with Manchester United, winning with Porto, Inter and now with Roma is something special. Winning when everyone expects it is easy, while it is special to win when you do something truly historic. I hope the fans wait for us and celebrate with us all."

    In distinct Mourinho fashion, the Giallorossi were able to absorb pressure once they took the lead, only holding 33 per cent of possession over the 90 minutes.

    Feyenoord could do very little in breaking Roma down, generating only three shots from open play in the penalty area in the match, despite how much of the ball they had.

    For Mourinho and Roma, the Conference League had become a priority and he was pleased this trophy had not c1ome at the expense of domestic ambitions.

    "There are so many things going on in my head right now," he said. "I have been in Rome for 11 months and I immediately understood where I was.

    "As I told the boys, in Turin in the locker room, we did what we had to do, our job. But today it wasn't work, it was history and we wrote history. The Conference League is a competition that we thought we could win from the start, slowly becoming stronger and stronger and we met stronger and stronger teams.

    "But we were aiming for it and sacrificed a few points in the league without losing qualification for the Europa League."

  • Roma 1-0 Feyenoord: Zaniolo secures Giallorossi's first major European title Roma 1-0 Feyenoord: Zaniolo secures Giallorossi's first major European title

    Nicolo Zaniolo led Roma to their first major continental title with a 1-0 victory over Feyenoord in the Europa Conference League final in Tirana on Wednesday. 

    After suffering a defeat in the 1984 European Cup final and missing out on UEFA Cup glory seven years later, the Serie A side were not to be denied an elusive European triumph and lifted their first trophy since the Coppa Italia in 2008. 

    Zaniolo, who missed the entire 2020-21 season after suffering a second ACL injury in under a year, dinked in an exemplary finish in the 32nd minute to put Roma in charge. 

    Feyenoord upped their game after the restart and were denied by the woodwork twice in three minutes, but Jose Mourinho's men tightened up and saw out a famous victory.

    The meeting between the competition's two most prolific sides was bereft of goalmouth action for much of the first half, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan's withdrawal due to injury the most notable event in the opening half hour. 

    Roma moved in front with the first real chance of the match, though, as Zaniolo brought down Gianluca Mancini's excellent delivery with his chest and stabbed an instinctive finish home. 

    Feyenoord made a bright start to the second half and Mancini diverted a fizzed low cross onto the near post of his own goal before Rui Patricio parried Guus Til's follow-up behind. 

    Patricio produced a stunning stop in the 50th minute when he tipped a ferocious 20-yard drive from Tyrell Malacia onto the woodwork. 

    Justin Bijlow denied Jordan Veretout and Lorenzo Pellegrini as Roma tried to get a second on the break, but Bryan Linssen was unable to connect with Cyriel Dessers' flick-on in stoppage time on a painful evening for Feyenoord.

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