Real Madrid look set to finally land a midfielder before the transfer window closes.

The LaLiga giants have been linked to numerous midfielders and, after a slow start to the season, they may make a signing ahead of the window shutting on Monday.

Madrid are reportedly close to strengthening their squad by completing a move for Sporting CP star Bruno Fernandes.

 

TOP STORY – REAL MADRID CLOSE TO SEALING FERNANDES DEAL

Real Madrid have almost completed a deal for Fernandes, according to ESPN.

The Portugal international, 24, was linked to Manchester United and Tottenham earlier in the window.

Now, the Sporting captain looks set for Madrid, who have reportedly targeted United's Paul Pogba, Spurs' Christian Eriksen and Ajax's Donny van de Beek during the close season.

It comes just days after Fiorentina sporting director Daniele Prade said Fernandes was heading to Madrid for €70million.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Neymar saga will finally end – for now – with the Paris Saint-Germain star staying with the Ligue 1 champions. L'Equipe reports the Brazil international will remain with PSG, while Sport reports Barcelona will resume their pursuit of Neymar in 2020.

- That could mean a few more eyes on Mauro Icardi on Monday. PSG are in talks with Inter over a potential loan deal for the forward, according to RMC Sport and Gianluca Di Marzio.

- Pogba may still be hoping to eventually get his move to Real Madrid. The Mirror reports the France international will resist signing a new deal with Premier League giants Manchester United, with his current contract running until 2021, although the club have an option to extend that by a year.

- Javier Hernandez should get a deadline-day move from West Ham. The Premier League club have agreed to sell the forward to Sevilla for close to €8.9m (£8m), according to Sky Sports News.

- Henrikh Mkhitaryan came off the bench during Arsenal's draw against Tottenham on Sunday and he could be on his way out of the Emirates Stadium a day later. Roma are pressing hard to sign the midfielder on loan with an option to buy, according to Gianluca Di Marzio.

- Phil Foden may have to wait for his chances at Manchester City, but the Premier League champions are keen to keep the teenage midfielder in their squad. The Sun reports City rejected loan bids from Rangers and Roma for the England youth international.

Mauro Icardi's agent and wife Wanda Nara hinted the Inter outcast could join Paris Saint-Germain before Monday's transfer deadline.

The transfer window is set to close and Icardi's future is still unresolved amid links to Ligue 1 champions PSG, LaLiga outfits Atletico Madrid and Valencia, as well as Napoli.

Inter are determined to sell star forward Icardi, who was stripped of the captaincy last season and is not wanted by head coach Antonio Conte.

Amid reports Icardi could make a deadline-day move to PSG on loan, Nara told Tiki Taka: "I'll work until the end of the transfer window.

"There are a couple of teams. My relationship with the Inter board is very good.

"Boca Juniors would be difficult, but there are solutions in Europe.

"We'll see if he goes to a team outside of Italy."

It comes amid speculation Icardi's lawyer is reportedly threatening to sue Inter over his exclusion from the first team.

Gazzetta dello Sport reported Icardi's legal team will seek to bring action against Inter in order to have the former club captain reinstated in the squad, which necessitates a claim for damages.

An Inter spokesperson declined to comment on the matter when contacted by Omnisport.

When asked about the Icardi saga prior to Sunday's 2-1 win over Cagliari, Inter CEO Giuseppe Marotta told Sky: "We have been very clear before and we are calm today.

"We will also face this situation, but I think it is right to give space to the players who go on the pitch, to the fans, and to the club.

"It is not a question to be solved. It is not a problem; it is ordinary football management. At the end of the transfer window, it will be clearer."

Romelu Lukaku revelled in his goalscoring display to lead Inter to a second successive Serie A win, despite being the victim of racial abuse against Cagliari.

Lukaku scored his second goal of the season after arriving from Manchester United as Inter defeated Cagliari 2-1 on Sunday but the victory was soured by racist chants.

Monkey chants were directed at Lukaku as Inter's club-record signing stepped up to convert a 72nd-minute penalty at the Sardegna Arena.

Amid widespread condemnation, Lukaku told Inter TV: "I'm very happy about these first two league victories and about tonight's success.

"It was a tough match, we had to fight but that's what we'll have to do in every game, I'm happy for the team and for our fans.

"To score wearing this shirt is a great feeling, I want to help the team even more, through assists too: the goal is to continue like this."

Lukaku scored the winner after team-mate Lautaro Martinez's first-half opener was cancelled out by Joao Pedro away from home.

On his partnership with Martinez, Lukaku added: "It's improving week after week and I'm happy about his goal, which was important for us.

"Now there will be a break for national team commitments, it will be important that we all come back in good condition and then work best in preparation for the matches at San Siro against Udinese and Slavia Prague [in the Champions League]."

Antonio Conte demanded more respect and improvement in Italy after Romelu Lukaku was subjected to racial abuse in Inter's 2-1 win away to Cagliari.

Lukaku scored a penalty to preserve Inter's perfect start to the Serie A season but Sunday's victory was overshadowed by monkey chants aimed at the Belgian striker.

Racial chants could be heard as Lukaku stepped up to convert the 72nd-minute penalty, which secured all three points for Inter after Joao Pedro had cancelled out Lautaro Martinez's first-half opener.

It was another dark day for Italian football and Cagliari at the Sardegna Arena, where former Juventus striker Moise Kean endured similar chants last season.

After widespread condemnation and calls for Italian authorities to crack down, Inter head coach Conte told reporters: "We need to improve a great deal in Italy and be more respectful to people who are working, in general.

"When I was working abroad, the fans would cheer on their own team, not spend their entire time insulting the opponent."

Inter made it two wins from two games under Conte but the Nerazzurri were far from perfect on the road against Cagliari.

After routing Lecce in their Serie A opener, Inter were fortunate to claim victory following a contentious penalty call against Fabio Pisacane.

"It was a different game to the win against Lecce, as I had warned everyone this would be tough. Coming to Cagliari is never a walk in the park," Conte said.

"Let it be known, I am very demanding and there is a lot we need to do in order to improve, but I also say we are glad to have won in a difficult arena.

"Cagliari played their game and did it well, but this is a very important result, as it carries on from the performance against Lecce, but we should've 'killed' it more after conceding their equaliser. We did well to get back on top, but there's more we can do.

"This team was built to play with midfielders pushing forward into the channels, like Matias Vecino, Stefano Sensi, Roberto Gagliardini and Nicolo Barella."

While Diego Godin came off the bench to make his debut, Alexis Sanchez was an unused substitute following his loan move from Manchester United.

"Alexis Sanchez is an excellent player and he is in decent shape, but will go on international duty now and play only the first game with Chile against Argentina, put some minutes in his legs," Conte added. "We must get him back to the level he was at Udinese and Barcelona."

Ante Rebic said he is "very happy to be here" as the Eintracht Frankfurt star confirmed his protracted move to AC Milan.

Rebic is poised to swap Eintracht for Milan on an initial loan deal prior to Monday's transfer deadline, with Andre Silva due to move in the opposite direction.

The Croatia international, who was absent for Eintracht's 2-1 Bundesliga win over Fortuna Dusseldorf, landed in Milan on Sunday.

"I'm very happy to be here. Forza Milan," Rebic told reporters as he walked to his hotel.

Rebic had been linked to Serie A rivals Inter throughout the transfer window but the former Fiorentina forward – who arrived at Eintracht from La Viola on an initial loan deal in 2016 – is set to return to Italy via Milan.

The 25-year-old, who was part of the Croatia team that reached the 2018 World Cup final, scored 10 goals across all competitions last season.

Rebic scored nine Bundesliga goals and supplied four assists alongside former star team-mates Luka Jovic and Sebastien Haller, who joined Real Madrid and West Ham respectively in the off-season.

"It looks as though we will probably have a swap-deal. Ante Rebic will leave to join AC Milan, and all going well, Andre Silva will come to us," Eintracht head coach Adi Hutter told the Bundesliga website following Sunday's victory.

"It was Ante's wish to join a big club, and all involved are happy about the situation."

Romelu Lukaku was subjected to racist abuse from Cagliari supporters but scored his second goal in two Serie A games for Inter as Antonio Conte's men extended their winning start to the season with a 2-1 victory.

The €65million signing from Manchester United endured similar chants to those aimed at former Juventus striker Moise Kean last season while taking a penalty he converted to clinch three points for the visitors at the Sardegna Arena.

After a comfortable 4-0 win over Lecce in their opening game the Nerazzurri came up against a stubborn Cagliari side bolstered by Inter loanee Radja Nainggolan, who gave his parent club no rest in midfield.

Lautaro Martinez partnered Lukaku in the Inter attack and he helped to distract from the ongoing uncertainty over Mauro Icardi's future when he opened his account for 2019-20 in the 27th minute.

But the craft and endeavour Inter showed against Lecce was stemmed by Cagliari, who drew level through Joao Pedro five minutes into the second half.

The hosts looked set to earn a battling point until Fabio Pisacane conceded a penalty and Lukaku further endeared himself to the Inter faithful by burying it.

Nainggolan, playing a deep-lying role, provided the hosts with the guile they needed to break up Inter's crisp approach play and endured some heavy challenges during the early exchanges.

But the pressure paid off when Martinez beat Alberto Cerri and the offside trap as he rose to meet Stefano Sensi's weighted cross, which he headed low into the corner.

Cagliari came out of the blocks quickly after half-time and Nahitan Nandez turned his marker before bursting down the right flank and crossing for Joao Pedro to head home from close range.

Sensi hit the crossbar with a curling free-kick from 20 yards as Inter pressed for a winner that arrived after he was brought down by Pisacane.

Lukaku held his nerve despite "monkey chants" emanating from the home supporters, coolly drilling the penalty kick into the bottom right corner of Robin Olsen's net before defiantly turning to face in the direction of those who abused him.

What does it mean? Serie A must act
The importance of the result was dwarfed by the latest racism flashpoint in Italian football and, after Serie A failed to punish Cagliari over the abuse directed at Kean, they surely cannot continue to ignore such a glaring blight on the division.

Lukaku and Martinez ensure Icardi is not missed
Inter CEO Giuseppe Marotta said the ongoing uncertainty over Icardi's future was "not a problem" in the build-up to the game and goals from both of his side's strikers supported his point.

Crucial error from clumsy Pisacane
Pisacane showed his limitations when going to ground and whipping Sensi's leg from under him as the Inter midfielder pressed for a winner.

What's next?
While Cagliari will be confident of getting something from their trip to Parma when Serie A resumes after the international break, Inter entertain Udinese at San Siro.

Romelu Lukaku was subjected to racist abuse from Cagliari supporters but scored his second goal in two Serie A games for Inter as Antonio Conte's men extended their winning start to the season with a 2-1 victory.

The €65million signing from Manchester United endured similar chants to those aimed at former Juventus striker Moise Kean last season while taking a penalty he converted to clinch three points for the visitors at the Sardegna Arena.

After a comfortable 4-0 win over Lecce in their opening game the Nerazzurri came up against a stubborn Cagliari side bolstered by Inter loanee Radja Nainggolan, who gave his parent club no rest in midfield.

Lautaro Martinez partnered Lukaku in the Inter attack and he helped to distract from the ongoing uncertainty over Mauro Icardi's future when he opened his account for 2019-20 in the 27th minute.

But the craft and endeavour Inter showed against Lecce was stemmed by Cagliari, who drew level through Joao Pedro five minutes into the second half.

The hosts looked set to earn a battling point until Fabio Pisacane conceded a penalty and Lukaku further endeared himself to the Inter faithful by burying it.

Mauro Icardi's future is "not a question to be solved" according to Inter CEO Giuseppe Marotta, despite the striker's lawyer reportedly threatening to sue the club over his exclusion from the first team.

Gazzetta dello Sport reported Icardi's legal team will seek to bring action against Inter in order to have the former club captain reinstated in the squad, which necessitates a claim for damages.

An Inter spokesperson declined to comment on the matter when contacted by Omnisport.

Marotta previously indicated his club was hoping to sell Icardi before the transfer window closes on September 2, but speaking ahead of Inter's Serie A clash with Cagliari on Sunday he said he was in no rush to find a resolution to the situation.

Since he was stripped of the captaincy last season, Icardi has been linked with Atletico Madrid and Boca Juniors in recent months, while Romelu Lukaku arrived at Inter and Alexis Sanchez also joined from Manchester United on loan.

When asked about the Icardi saga, Marotta told Sky: "We have been very clear before and we are calm today.

"We will also face this situation, but I think it is right to give space to the players who go on the pitch, to the fans, and to the club.

"It is not a question to be solved. It is not a problem; it is ordinary football management.

"At the end of the transfer window, it will be clearer."

Eintracht Frankfurt and AC Milan have agreed a swap deal involving Ante Rebic and Andre Silva, according to the Bundesliga club's sporting director Fredi Bobic.

Croatia international Rebic was left out of Sunday's 2-1 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf amid speculation he was close to moving from Frankfurt to San Siro.

Bobic expects the forward to complete a switch to Milan on Monday before the transfer deadline, while Portugal striker Silva is due to sign for Eintracht. It is believed both players will move on loan.

"The clubs have an agreement," Bobic told Sky in Germany. "If everything goes OK, Silva will be a Frankfurt player tomorrow and Rebic will be in Milan."

Rebic had also been linked with Inter following a fine 2018-19 season, in which he scored 10 goals in all competitions.

The 25-year-old scored a hat-trick in the recent 5-3 DFB-Pokal defeat of Waldhof Mannheim.

Eintracht, Europa League semi-finalists last season, have already lost two key forwards during the transfer window, with Luka Jovic joining Real Madrid and Sebastien Haller moving to West Ham.

Lazio and Roma drew 1-1 in the Derby della Capitale in Serie A on Sunday, a thrilling game in which the woodwork was hit an incredible six times - a Serie A record since Opta began recording such data in 2003-04.

Lucas Leiva's third-minute volley rattled the post and Nicolo Zaniolo also hit the frame of the goal before Roma took the lead in the 17th minute.

Ex-Lazio left-back Aleksandar Kolarov slotted in a penalty awarded after Edin Dzeko's cross was blocked by the arm of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, giving Roma their 1-0 advantage.

Lazio's front two struck the same post in quick succession, Ciro Immobile and Joaquin Correa denied, before fine margins continued to rule a chaotic derby when Roma's Zaniolo hit the woodwork for the second time.

Simone Inzaghi's men levelled in the 58th minute. Kolarov was robbed by Milinkovic-Savic, who sent Immobile clear and the striker cleverly fed Luis Alberto to smash home.

Remarkably the woodwork would come into play again as Lazio's Marco Parolo curled a glorious effort on to the face of the crossbar with four minutes to go.

Lazio then thought they had won it in added time when Manuel Lazzari hammered in, but substitute Jony had run offside to deliver the low cross from the byline.

Ante Rebic has been left out of Eintracht Frankfurt's squad for Sunday's Bundesliga clash against Fortuna Dusseldorf amid rumours of a possible move to AC Milan or Inter Milan.

The Serie A rivals continue to be linked with Croatia international Rebic, who has featured in six of Frankfurt's previous nine matches this season although he was also left out for the defeat to RB Leipzig last week.

He started Thursday's Europa League play-off tie with Strasbourg and was sent off in the first half of the 3-0 second-leg win, which sealed his side's place in the group stage of the competition.

Rebic was once again omitted against Dusseldorf, though, and is reportedly closing in on a switch to Serie A, with Milan the rumoured frontrunners for his signature ahead of Monday's deadline.

Speaking three weeks ago, the German side's sporting director Bruno Hubner said he was "optimistic" about keeping Rebic.

Last season's Europa League semi-finalists Frankfurt have already lost two key forwards during the transfer window as Luka Jovic joined Real Madrid and Sebastien Haller moved to West Ham.

Will he, or won't he?

Neymar has dominated headlines throughout the transfer window, with the Paris Saint-Germain star eyeing a Barcelona return.

However, it seems he will not get what he wanted before Monday's deadline…

 

TOP STORY – NEYMAR GIVES UP ON BARCA MOVE

Neymar will remain at Paris Saint-Germain after failing to secure a move to Barcelona, according to reports.

The PSG superstar wanted to return to LaLiga champions Barca, just two years after his world-record move to Paris.

Barca had tried to negotiate a deal with PSG, however, L'Equipe says Neymar has already notified the club and family that he will stay at the Ligue 1 holders.

 

ROUND-UP

- Juventus are gearing up for a late move for Tottenham star Christian Eriksen, according to The Express. Juve have reportedly joined PSG in trying to sign Eriksen prior to Monday's deadline.

- The Mirror says Real Madrid have also turned their attention to Eriksen after they were unable to prise Neymar from PSG. Madrid have also been linked to Sporting CP captain Bruno Fernandes.

- Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak and Dinamo Zagreb's Dominik Livakovic are potential targets for Manchester United, who are worried David de Gea will leave for free at the end of the season. That is according to The Sun.

- According to the Daily Mirror, Borussia Dortmund are monitoring the situation regarding Liverpool teenager Bobby Duncan. The 18-year-old reportedly had a move to Fiorentina blocked by Liverpool, prompting his agent to accuse the Reds of "bullying", accusations the club called "inaccurate" and "inflammatory".

- Fiorentina are desperate to lure Matteo Politano from Inter, reports Calciomercato. La Viola have offered €30million but Inter want €35m as they reportedly line up Eintracht Frankfurt star Ante Rebic as a possible replacement.

Keylor Navas is poised to swap Madrid for PSG and he might not be only the goalkeeper to move to Paris. Cadena Ser claims Sevilla's Sergio Rico will swap LaLiga for Ligue 1 on loan with the option to buy.

AC Milan head coach Marco Giampaolo defended his decision to bench Krzysztof Piatek, while he said Lucas Paqueta must learn to be "a little less Brazilian."

Piatek was named among the substitutes as Milan edged Brescia 1-0 at San Siro on Saturday to celebrate their first victory under Giampaolo.

Giampaolo made changes to the team that lost 1-0 to Udinese on the opening weekend, with prolific scorer Piatek dropped to the bench in favour of Andre Silva before he was introduced just past the hour mark.

The move sparked questions and Giampaolo explained his decision after Hakan Calhanoglu's early header settled the contest in Milan.

"Every game requires its own choices and in this one I chose Andre Silva and [Ismael] Bennacer," Giampaolo told DAZN.

"Milan have a strong squad, so I have the option to choose between various alternatives. I don't know if Andre Silva is leaving before the transfer deadline, but he is a professional, he is at our disposal and therefore he can play.

"Piatek is a great player, but if he is on the bench occasionally, the world isn't going to end. Players must think only of giving their all for Milan, then I'll make my decisions. Maybe I saw he wasn't quite as sharp during the week in training as some others."

Brazilian midfielder Paqueta also started on the bench after he was named in Giampaolo's line-up against Udinese last week.

Asked about Paqueta – who was introduced for scorer Calhanoglu in the 65th minute – Giampaolo said: "In the way I see things, Paqueta can be an excellent mezz'ala.

"He just needs to learn to be a little less Brazilian at times, more solid and less playful.

"I think he can be a mezz'ala, but then in the final 10 minutes, in some situations, he could be used as a trequartista, but I like a player who is more attacking in his characteristics."

Juventus assistant Giovanni Martusciello said the Serie A champions never give up after Saturday's stunning 4-3 win over Scudetto rivals Napoli.

After surrendering a 3-0 lead, Juventus prevailed thanks to Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly's 92nd-minute own goal at the Allianz Stadium in Turin.

Juventus were cruising courtesy of goals from Danilo, Gonzalo Higuain and Cristiano Ronaldo, whose strike put the home side ahead just past the hour mark.

Napoli, however, produced a sensational rally as Kostas Manolas, Hirving Lozano and Giovanni Di Lorenzo scored to help restore parity by the 81st minute.

But Juve managed to escape with all three points after Koulibaly turned the ball into his own net in the second minute of stoppage time.

Martusciello – deputising on the sidelines as head coach Maurizio Sarri continues to recover from pneumonia – told Sky Sport Italia: "We saw a physical dip after the hour mark and it was tough against a side like Napoli who pass it so well, but we also got distracted and should've made more of the situation when 3-0 up.

"You can concede goals, but not three in 16 minutes. Perhaps we felt sated by going 3-0 up and allowed Napoli to bite back.

"When there are errors of positioning and then reaction, you're going to concede goals against players of this quality. I want to focus on the very positive performance in the first hour, but some fear set in after they got back into it.

"I've been here for around a month and even in the pre-season friendlies I was amazed by the way this squad does not give up. They gave their all and kept going to achieve something from the game and it is a remarkable trait."

Star defender Matthijs de Ligt made his Serie A debut for Juve following his big-money arrival from Eredivisie champions Ajax.

De Ligt was an unused substitute in Juve's opener but Giorgio Chiellini's anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) handed the 20-year-old his first start.

The Netherlands international, though, was not completely convincing – the Dutchman caught napping for Napoli's second goal.

"De Ligt is still a little bit behind in terms of learning the movements and being part of the defensive unit," Martusciello said. "He has arrived in a difficult league like Serie A from a very different team, but he has a great deal of quality, is very intelligent and will learn quickly. He had a very good hour too, so he's getting there.

"We had hoped for more time to get him settled, but unfortunately Giorgio Chiellini had that serious injury and changed the plans."

Carlo Ancelotti said he would have been disappointed even if Napoli had rescued a 3-3 draw against Juventus after his team were heartbreakingly denied a miracle comeback in Turin.

Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly scored a 92nd-minute own goal as Serie A champions Juventus survived to prevail 4-3 in Saturday's breathtaking showdown.

Juventus looked on track for an emphatic victory thanks to goals from Danilo, Gonzalo Higuain and Cristiano Ronaldo, until Kostas Manolas, Hirving Lozano and Giovanni Di Lorenzo all scored in a stunning Napoli rally.

Manolas and Lozano were on target in quick succession to give Napoli hope before Di Lorenzo equalised with nine minutes remaining, only for Koulibaly to divert a Juve free-kick into his own net.

Ancelotti was not a happy man following the last-gasp defeat as he lamented a wasted opportunity and Napoli's poor performance at the Allianz Stadium.

"Juventus have so much character and quality, we know that they always step up in the crunch moments of the season. We can compete, but we wasted an opportunity today, above all that [there was an] hour where we just didn't play. That is really disappointing," Ancelotti, whose Napoli have scored and conceded seven goals in two games, told Sky Sport Italia.

"I would've been disappointed even if it had ended 3-3, because the performance remained the same. Koulibaly won't go on international duty, so he has the chance to train and focus on finding his form during the next couple of weeks."

Ancelotti added: "It was not a positive test, as we played badly for an hour. It seemed over, we got it back on track and it could've ended 3-3 or 4-3, it wouldn't have changed the fact our performance was insufficient.

"The game changed because Juve focused on the counter-attack after going 3-0 up and we took more control of the ball. Lozano added more weight to the attack, but it wasn't just his introduction.

"We allowed Juve to press us, Fabian Ruiz was left isolated throughout the first half and we never found him, because the spaces to go on the counter were there, we just didn't use them.

"The defence was in place with seven or eight players in the final third on the Gonzalo Higuain and Cristiano Ronaldo goals, so it's not as if we were caught on the counter then.

"We were unable to find Fabian Ruiz, but we did better after the break when we moved things around and he was able to hurt them.

"The defence is not an individual issue or one of technique. We have conceded seven goals in two rounds because the whole team aren't sacrificing themselves enough to help out."

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