Leicester City have rejected two bids for rumoured Manchester United and Manchester City target Harry Maguire, Brendan Rodgers has said.

England international Maguire is thought to be of interest to both Manchester clubs, with United having been linked with the 26-year-old a year ago during Jose Mourinho's time in charge.

A deal did not materialise then and the defender signed a new five-year contract in September 2018.

However, United are said to have renewed their interest and Leicester boss Rodgers revealed on Tuesday that his club had turned down two offers for a player the Foxes are thought to value at £80million.

In quotes published by the Leicester Mercury after Maguire played 45 minutes in a pre-season friendly against Scunthorpe United, Rodgers said: "It's pretty simple really and we're quite relaxed about it.

"Harry is a top-class player. Of course, he has attracted interest with two bids coming in but they nowhere near meet the valuation of the club.

"Harry is relaxed about it – we are. He's been absolutely brilliant, I have to add, because I've been in a similar situation a number of times and it can be very difficult for players, but he's a special guy."

There have been reports that Maguire has informed Leicester of his desire to leave and though Rodgers would not comment on those suggestions, he did admit he saw the appeal of the clubs linked with his player.

"Any conversation with me and a player would be private," he added.

"If a team like Man City or Man United are interested, I understand the attraction.

"We're relaxed because until the valuation is met, there's not a decision to be made."

Former Manchester United talent Ravel Morrison has secured a return to English football by signing a one-year deal with Premier League newcomers Sheffield United.

Morrison, 26, came through the Red Devils' academy and was tipped for big things, with Rio Ferdinand once claiming Sir Alex Ferguson rated him as the best 14-year-old he had ever seen.

But the midfielder had a string of disciplinary problems, finding himself in trouble with police more than once, and he has struggled to live up to his early promise.

But following a trial period with the Blades, Morrison has earned a one-year deal with the possibility of an extension.

Manager Chris Wilder said: "Ravel is an undoubted talent and we are delighted we have put together a deal that suits all parties. I've spoken to a number of people about him and it is clear that he has serious ability.

"We are getting a fantastic footballer with a tremendous pedigree and this is a great opportunity for Rav. We believe we can help him get back to the level he wants to be."

A former England youth international through to under-21 level, Morrison left Old Trafford in 2012 after United ran out of patience with him, allowing him to join West Ham, who then loaned him to Birmingham City.

After starting brilliantly upon his return to West Ham, Morrison fell out of favour.

Subsequent loans to QPR and Cardiff City yielded little, as did a hopeful permanent move to Lazio, for whom he played just four Serie A matches.

Lazio also loaned him to QPR and Mexican club Atlas, before Morrison spent the final months of last season in Sweden with Ostersund following his release from the Rome club.

Celtic boss Neil Lennon has told Arsenal they will need to improve their offer for Kieran Tierney as he is "a far more rounded full-back" than Manchester United's £50million signing Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

The Gunners are reported to have made a second bid of around £25m for the Scotland international, which has been rejected.

Lennon is adamant Celtic will not be forced into a cut-price sale of any of their prized assets as they attempt to navigate a Champions League qualifying tie with Sarajevo.

He believes Tierney is a more complete player than Wan-Bissaka, who left Crystal Palace for United last month, and therefore expects offers that reflect his left-back's ability.

"We can't do anything about what clubs do in England," Lennon told a news conference.

"Fifty million for Wan-Bissaka is a lot of money and we feel that Kieran is a far more experienced and rounded full-back at this juncture in his career.

"He's an asset for us and we do have a value for the player and we rate the player very highly.

"'Disrespectful' is the wrong word but we're certainly not going to be pushed over in any negotiations and we're in a very strong position with regards to a number of our assets in the team.

"The club's valuation of Kieran has not been met and until then we don't have a discussion. He's a great player, a great talent. At 22, he's already achieved a hell of a lot and he has so much more to give to the game.

"He's our player. He's on a long-term contract. While it's a backhanded compliment for all the hard work people here have done over the years with Kieran, we don't want him to go.

"Some of the players who have left here in the last few years have gone on to do all right in the English Premier League. We think we know what we're doing in terms of developing players.

"But we don't want them in the Premier League, we want them here with us playing in the Champions League."

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard insists he can bring success to Stamford Bridge this season despite the club's transfer embargo.

The Blues have been banned from registering new players for two consecutive transfer windows after FIFA found them guilty of breaching regulations relating to the signing of under-18s.

Chelsea have lodged an appeal against the ban with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), having denied any wrongdoing.

Lampard, who took over after Maurizio Sarri left at the end of 2018-19, will be expected to challenge for honours in his first term in charge but is facing an immediate disadvantage given Eden Hazard has left for Real Madrid and no further reinforcements can be made.

However, the former midfielder has total confidence in the players already at his disposal.

"I watched a lot of Chelsea last year under Maurizio Sarri," he said ahead of Chelsea's pre-season clash with Kawasaki Frontale in Yokohama.

"In terms of the way that the season finished, to win the Europa League and secure Champions League football, it was a successful season. But for me, the story is not to look backwards.

"I know the club very well, I know the players very well. I have my own way that I want to work with the players, and I have to say in one week that we have been training I have been very happy with the attitude and the quality of the players. My job now is to work hard in pre-season with them.

"I like my teams to play with a lot of energy and speed, with and without the ball, so I want to win it back as quickly as we can. When we have the ball, I want to move the ball quickly and create chances and win games and feel like we are playing football that we enjoy. So, that is my job now.

"I think I have inherited very good players. We can't bring any players in this year, we know that, but I don't need new players. I am very happy with the squad and determined for us to be successful."

Lampard confirmed on Tuesday that Ethan Ampadu is not part of the squad in Japan as he is due to head out on loan for the season.

However, the 41-year-old head coach is ready to turn to academy players and give others a chance in the Chelsea first team.

"Everybody knows I have a keen eye for the younger players in the academy," Lampard said. "We have a batch of them fighting to get into the first team. They now have to make the difference. They have to be the ones who play well enough to get into the team."

West Ham have agreed a deal with Eintracht Frankfurt to sign striker Sebastien Haller, the Bundesliga club have confirmed.

The 25-year-old has been granted permission to travel to London for a medical and to complete a move to the Premier League.

Manuel Pellegrini's side will reportedly pay £45million for the former France Under-21 international, which would break the club record of £34m they paid Lazio for Felipe Anderson last year.

Haller scored 15 goals in 23 Bundesliga starts last season as Eintracht finished in seventh place.

He struck a further five times in their run to the semi-finals of the Europa League, where they lost to Chelsea on penalties.

Haller is set to become West Ham's second major signing of the close season following the arrival of attacking midfielder Pablo Fornals from Villarreal.

West Ham quickly brokered a deal for Haller after they missed out on Maxi Gomez, who left Celta Vigo for Valencia.

Earlier, the Hammers confirmed the departure of full-back Sam Byram, who has joined Norwich City for a reported £750,000.

Byram, 25, made only 36 first-team appearances after joining from Leeds United in January 2016.

West Ham have agreed a deal with Eintracht Frankfurt to sign striker Sebastien Haller, the Bundesliga club have confirmed.

Liverpool have confirmed goalkeeper Andy Lonergan will join the first-team squad for their pre-season tour of the United States.

The 35-year-old, without a club since leaving Middlesbrough at the end of last season, will work with the European champions' goalkeeping department alongside Simon Mignolet and Daniel Atherton.

Alisson is yet to return for pre-season duties since winning the Copa America with Brazil, while young keepers Caoimhin Kelleher and Vitezslav Jaros are injured.

Lonergan, who began his career with Preston North End, has played for several clubs in England including Leeds United, Bolton Wanderers, Fulham and Wolves.

He joined Middlesbrough in 2018 but did not make an appearance for the Championship club and spent the second half of last term on loan at Rochdale before being released when his contract expired.

Liverpool face Borussia Dortmund, Sevilla and Sporting CP while in the USA.

Gareth Bale's agent has branded talk of a Tottenham bid to bring the forward back from Real Madrid "rubbish".

A report in Marca has claimed Spurs have contacted Madrid about the Wales international and are prepared to pay a fee of between €50million and €60m to sign him.

The story adds that any possible negotiations would be hampered by the fact the Premier League club could only afford around half of Bale's Madrid wages.

It has long been suggested Bale will move on in the transfer window as it is believed head coach Zinedine Zidane does not consider him a key part of his plans.

However, the 30-year-old's agent, Jonathan Barnett, says there is no truth to the latest Spurs rumours.

"I don't comment on rubbish," was his brief response to talkSPORT.

Bale's future appears complicated as there seem to be few clubs willing and able to match both his wages and Madrid's asking price.

Manchester United were often linked with the player last season but manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is not thought to have any concrete interest in a bid.

With Chelsea under a transfer embargo and Manchester City and Liverpool seemingly not among his suitors, a move back to Spurs, the club he left in 2013 to join Madrid in a €100m deal, appears most likely if he is to return to the Premier League.

Bale scored 11 goals in 40 appearances in a disappointing season for Madrid in 2018-19, as they finished third in LaLiga and were humbled by Ajax in the last 16 of the Champions League.

With Eden Hazard and Rodrygo joining in the close season and Vinicius Junior, Marco Asensio and Lucas Vazquez also competing for wide attacking spots alongside strikers Karim Benzema, Luka Jovic and Mariano Diaz, Bale's first-team opportunities at the Santiago Bernabeu are looking limited.

Real Madrid potentially have an avenue to sell Gareth Bale and it would see the attacker return to familiar surroundings.

Bale is reportedly set to leave the Santiago Bernabeu this close season, although the Wales international's agent has repeatedly said the 30-year-old wants to stay.

Now, it seems a return to Tottenham is a possibility.

 

TOP STORY – TOTTENHAM INTERESTED IN BALE

Tottenham have told Real Madrid they are ready to pay between £45million (€50m) and £55m (€60m) for Bale, according to Marca.

Bale spent six seasons at Spurs before his move to Madrid, twice named the PFA Players' Player of the Year.

However, the report also says Tottenham are unable to afford Bale's £15.3m (€17m) net wages per season.

ROUND-UP

- David de Gea is ready to sign a new deal with Manchester United. Reports in United Kingdom say the Premier League giants are confident the goalkeeper, who is out of contract next year, will re-sign, The Mirror saying De Gea will become the world's highest paid shot-stopper with a £375,000-per-week deal.

- Unsurprisingly, Neymar still wants out of Paris Saint-Germain. According to Le Parisien, the Brazil star – linked with a return to Barcelona – met with Leonardo and told the sporting director he wanted to leave the Ligue 1 champions.

- Just as it looked like Manchester United had done a deal for Harry Maguire, it seems they still have work to do. Citing unnamed sources, ESPN FC say United are "miles away" from meeting Leicester City's £80m valuation for the defender. According to the Mirror, United are reluctant to pay more than the £75m Liverpool needed to land Virgil van Dijk last year.

- Staying at Old Trafford, it seems Manchester United are preparing a bid for Sporting CP midfielder Bruno Fernandes. The Independent say United will put in a concrete bid for Fernandes in the next three weeks.

- A move that appears close to getting done is Matthijs de Ligt's switch from Ajax to Juventus. The Serie A champions have agreed a €75m deal, including bonuses, with the Eredivisie side, according to Sky Sport.

- Romelu Lukaku is still a reported target for Inter, but any progress between the Serie A outfit and Manchester United seems to be slow. Sky Sport say Inter are not confident about reaching an agreement, with United wanting €87.8m (£79m) for the striker.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said Manchester United will have to reduce their centre-back options if they prise Harry Maguire from Leicester City.

United have been linked with Maguire throughout the off-season, reports claiming the Red Devils are close to agreeing a world-record fee for a defender.

Solskjaer has an array of options in the centre-back area, with Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly, Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo and Axel Tuanzebe all on tour in Australia.

When asked about his stockpile of defenders, Solskjaer told reporters in Perth on Tuesday: "Of course, there's a limit of players.

"Whoever performs will be part of the team and whoever doesn't has a fight to get back in.

"There's been loads of speculation but I can't really say anything. We'll work to find a relationship with the ones we've got."

Tuanzebe, 21, is back with United following an impressive loan spell at Aston Villa, who he helped secure promotion to the Premier League last season.

Solskjaer, who confirmed Fred, Matteo Darmian and Dean Henderson will join the squad for the next part of their pre-season tour in Singapore, added: "Axel has got a great chance of staying here and playing. He had a great season last year.

"It was a stop-start season with injuries, but he's really proven that he is capable of playing at that level, he got promoted with Villa and he's come back very strong, focused.

"He did well in the first game here, so he's one of the young, exciting players that I can't wait to see more."

United will face rivals Leeds United in Perth on Wednesday following their 2-0 win over Perth Glory on Saturday.

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery insisted Laurent Koscielny was still "an important player" despite uncertainty over the club captain's future.

Koscielny refused to travel to the United States for Arsenal's pre-season tour amid speculation over his future, with Lyon, Bordeaux and Borussia Dortmund linked with a move for the French defender.

Emery said the 33-year-old was still part of his plans, but added a decision on Koscielny was in the club's hands.

"He has one year left on his contract. For me as a coach, he's an important player. Now, it's one matter for him and the club," Emery said after Arsenal's 3-0 win over Colorado Rapids on Monday, via Football London.

"The club and him need to speak, they are speaking about his situation. I cannot say more than that.

"I spoke with him before he came here and he decided to stay there."

Emery revealed he spoke to Koscielny three times about his situation but the centre-back opted against travelling.

It has been an otherwise quiet close season for Arsenal, who have been linked with moves for the likes of Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha, Celtic defender Kieran Tierney and Real Madrid's Dani Ceballos.

Emery, whose side finished fifth last season, was remaining calm over potential additions to his squad.

"The club is working. We are speaking every day with the club and [technical director] Edu. I prefer to work with patience and calm and take the best decision," he said.

"We have very good players, very young good players. We need someone to help us. The club is working on that.

"We prefer to take the best decision with patience. If we need to wait more time for this reason I prefer to do that."

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is hopeful David de Gea will agree a new contract with Manchester United amid reports the goalkeeper is set to re-sign.

De Gea, 28, is out of contract next year, but reports suggest the Spain international is set to sign a long-term deal worth about £350,000 per week.

Speaking at a news conference on Tuesday, United manager Solskjaer tried to give little away about De Gea's future.

"Hopefully we can agree a new contract with David," he said, via the Evening Standard.

"That will be up to the club and David to announce."

De Gea has been one of several United players linked with a move away, along with the likes of Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku.

Pogba is reportedly a target for Real Madrid, while Lukaku has been linked with a switch to Serie A outfit Inter.

Solskjaer, whose team face Leeds United in a friendly in Perth on Wednesday, said whoever was in his squad for their Premier League opener against Chelsea on August 11 would be eager to perform for the Red Devils.

"The day we start the league, I'm sure everyone who's here will give absolutely everything for Man United," he said when asked if Lukaku would be happy if he stayed.

"We're going to have a strong team with players who want to give everything and there's always rumours, speculations about Man United players.

"But when the league starts we batten the hatches down and we stick together as a team."

Victor Lindelof insisted he was happy at Manchester United amid links to Barcelona.

Lindelof, 24, has spent the past two seasons at United after arriving from Benfica, but reports this month have linked the defender with a move to LaLiga champions Barca.

But the Sweden international moved to play down the talk, saying he was happy at Old Trafford in the Premier League.

"I'm very, very happy to be a Manchester United player," Lindelof told a news conference in Perth on Tuesday.

"I'm really looking forward to this season. I'm very excited for a new season to start.

"That's my answer, I'm very happy here."

Manchester United are preparing to face Leeds United in their second pre-season friendly in Australia on Wednesday.

Fabian Delph has moved from Manchester City to Everton, signing a three-year contract.

Everton swooped to sign the midfielder for a fee that could reportedly rise to £10million after he entered the final 12 months of his contract at the Etihad Stadium.

England international Delph made 89 appearances in all competitions for City over four seasons, occasionally filling in at left-back.

He started 21 times for Pep Guardiola's men when they cantered to the title in 2017-18 but featured less regularly last term as City were crowned champions again.

The 29-year-old's hopes of returning to first-team calculations were further diminished when City paid Atletico Madrid a club-record fee to secure the talented Rodri.

"Every time I have played against Everton, whether it was home or away, straight away the first thing that comes to mind when you see the fans is passion," Delph told Everton's official club website.

"The Everton fans seem to know football, seem to understand it, it seems to be in their blood and they really back the team.

"You are always going to hear Evertonians and I'm excited to play at home and hear them when I am playing.

"I'm really happy to be here, I'm going to give absolutely everything - nothing less than 100 per cent. Hopefully we can push together, fans and players, to do something special."

In arriving at Goodison Park, the former Leeds United and Aston Villa player becomes Everton's third signing of the close season.

Goalkeeper Jonas Lossl joined on a free from relegated Huddersfield Town and midfielder Andre Gomes inked a five-year deal after impressing during his loan spell from Barcelona.

"When I look to bring a new player into our squad, the first thing I look for above all the other things is quality and Fabian is a player with high quality," Everton boss Marco Silva said.

"But what they can bring to our dressing room is also important and if you can put those two things together then that can only be good for the club."

Arsenal should sell polarising playmaker Mesut Ozil and sign Hakim Ziyech from Ajax, according to former Gunners star Marc Overmars.

Ozil has long been a contentious figure at Arsenal, with many supporters underwhelmed by his performances in recent years despite being one of the Premier League's highest-paid players.

The German seemingly failed to endear him to head coach Unai Emery, who afforded Ozil only 20 league starts in 2018-19.

In contrast, Ziyech, a hard-working attacking midfielder, was inspirational in Ajax's run to the Champions League semi-finals and is reportedly available for the relatively low figure of €35million.

Dutchman Overmars - who is technical director at Ajax - claims he told Arsenal to replace Ozil with Morocco international Ziyech, but his advice went unheeded.

"I am a bit surprised that it is still so quiet around Hakim," Overmars told Voetbal International.

"I think he has played better every year and his statistics are exceptionally good. Many clubs are increasingly looking at that.

"They look more at the numbers than at what he shows and what is happening around him. I think Hakim Ziyech is better than Mesut Ozil.

"I would say [to Arsenal]: sell him [Ozil] and you will get Ziyech for half the price, but they didn't listen to me. So, it could just be that he stays with Ajax."

One Ajax star who is being strongly linked with other clubs is David Neres, the Brazil international winger who also enjoyed a strong campaign.

Atletico Madrid are said to be the favourites to land him and Overmars did confirm an offer has been made to Ajax, with the bid from an unnamed club set to be discussed in the coming days.

"Next week we are going to the table [for discussions] with his guidance," Overmars said. "For David, one club's interest is concrete, with an offer.

"We will then talk about that, but it is the intention that we as Ajax are leading [the discussions]. He was able to leave for China last winter, but we didn't let him go.

"Look how it worked out for Ajax, but also for him; he is now an international with Brazil."

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