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The arrivals of Lautaro Martinez and Neymar at the end of the season had been the dream for Barcelona.

Forming the best attack in the world had been the idea, prising Inter's Martinez to Camp Nou and re-signing Neymar from Paris Saint-Germain.

But Barca have reportedly been priced out of a deal for Neymar.

 

TOP STORY – PSG SET NEYMAR PRICE

Paris Saint-Germain want €175million in cash for Barcelona target Neymar, according to Sport.

Neymar left Barca for PSG in a world-record €222m transfer in 2017 but the Brazilian superstar continues to be linked with a Camp Nou comeback.

But Barca's hopes have been dealt a blow due to PSG's demands and coronavirus as they prioritise Inter forward Lautaro Martinez.

 

ROUND-UP

- RMC Sport claims Manchester City are interested in Milan midfielder Ismael Bennacer. Pep Guardiola has reportedly talked to Bennacer about a move to the Premier League. City are also interested in Barca's Sergi Roberto, claims Mundo Deportivo.

Real Madrid are keen on signing Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho, AS says. The England international has been tipped to join United, while Chelsea and Liverpool have also been linked.

- Calciomercato claims Napoli are eyeing a move for Lille forward Victor Osimhen. It comes amid uncertainty over the futures of Arkadiusz Milik and Jose Callejon. Milik has been heavily linked to Juventus, while the likes of Sevilla and Real Betis are reportedly interested in bringing former Madrid winger Callejon back to LaLiga.

Sevilla are prepared to wait until the end of the season for Barca's Ivan Rakitic, reports Mundo Deportivo. Barca are willing to sanction Rakitic's transfer and Spanish rivals Sevilla are looking to bring the Croatia international back to Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.

- According to L'Equipe, injury-plagued Barca star Ousmane Dembele has no intention of leaving Camp Nou for Juve.

- ESPN says United need more cash to sign Birmingham City sensation Jude Bellingham. The 16-year-old has also been linked to Dortmund.

Fabian Ruiz is wanted by Spain's two biggest clubs – Barca and Madrid. But Mundo Deportivo says the Napoli star is moving further away from a switch to the Santiago Bernabeu due to Madrid not being able to meet the Italian club's valuation. Luka Jovic and James Rodriguez have been mentioned as possible makeweights but Napoli only want cash.

- Lille defender Gabriel has emerged as a possible replacement for Napoli's Kalidou Koulibaly. Le10Sport says Napoli have identified Gabriel as well as Fiorentina pair German Pezzella and Nikola Milenkovic. Sky Sport Italia, meanwhile, says United are offering £71m (€80m) for Koulibaly but Napoli are holding out for at least £89m (€100m).

Pedro is a player in demand. The Chelsea forward is set to become a free agent and AS says Roma are the Spaniard's "priority". Juve, Sevilla, Betis and Valencia have also been credited with interest.

Atalanta owner Antonio Percassi has given his backing to head coach Gian Piero Gasperini, who was criticised by Valencia for being at a Champions League game despite suffering from coronavirus symptoms.

Gasperini revealed last week he was scared as he appeared to suffer from COVID-19 as Atalanta defeated Valencia 4-3 behind closed doors in the Champions League on March 10.

The Bergamo outfit advanced to the quarter-finals 8-4 on aggregate at Mestalla, although the competition has since been suspended due to the virus.

Valencia expressed "surprise" at Gasperini's comments, suggesting his actions "put at risk numerous people" in the city.

However, Percassi does not wish to drag the saga out, insisting he and Gasperini followed the rules and are moving forward.

"I am with Gasperini and the players. I am looking ahead," he told L'Eco di Bergamo.

"The controls say that, like Atalanta with our members, we did everything in compliance with the rules and with the utmost prudence.

"This is fundamental for us. We are in Bergamo."

With the Champions League reportedly set to resume in August, Atalanta will first return to Serie A action on June 21 as they look to secure qualification for Europe's elite club competition for next season.

La Dea are fourth, three points clear of fifth-placed Roma with a game in hand.

Lautaro Martinez's move to Barcelona is seemingly getting closer.

The star Inter forward has been linked to the LaLiga giants, although questions have been raised over whether Barca can find a deal to land the 22-year-old.

But the Argentina international could be nearing a switch to Camp Nou.

 

TOP STORY – LAUTARO, BARCELONA AGREE TO FIVE-YEAR DEAL

Martinez and Barcelona have reached an agreement on a five-year deal at about €12million per season plus bonuses, according to Sport.

The report says Inter have given up on the star forward, but are yet to reach an agreement with Barcelona.

Martinez has scored 16 goals in 31 games this season.

ROUND-UP

- Bayern Munich have already decided not to purchase Philippe Coutinho, who has been linked with an extended stay on loan. However, Sport Bild reports there is no chance the playmaker stays in Munich.

- Timo Werner is reportedly a target for Liverpool, but another Premier League club could be making their move. The Telegraph claims Chelsea are plotting a move for the RB Leipzig forward.

- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's Arsenal future remains uncertain. The Telegraph reports head coach Mikel Arteta is trying to persuade the striker to stay at the Premier League club, while The Sun says Arsenal will keep Aubameyang until the end of his contract in 2021 if they cannot get more than £20m for him this close season.

- Could Eric Garcia return to Barcelona? Sport reports the LaLiga giants are tracking the defender, who came through their youth system before joining Manchester City in 2018.

- Having impressed at Lyon, Houssem Aouar may be ready for a move. According to CalcioMercato, the attacker would prefer a switch to Juventus over Manchester City.

- After contract talks with Newcastle United broke down, Matty Longstaff could be heading abroad. The Times says the midfielder is set for a move to Serie A, with Udinese frontrunners to sign the 20-year-old.

Claudio Marchisio hopes Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo remains at the Serie A champions amid talk of a possible exit.

Ronaldo swapped Real Madrid for Juve in a stunning €100million transfer in 2018 and the five-time Ballon d'Or winner helped the Italian giants claim the Scudetto in his first season.

The 35-year-old had scored 21 Serie A goals in 22 appearances and 25 across all competitions prior to the coronavirus pandemic, with Juve a point clear atop the league standings.

There has been speculation that Portugal captain Ronaldo could leave Turin – Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain linked as well as former club Madrid.

Marchisio was asked about Ronaldo and the Juve great – who left the club for Zenit in 2018 before retiring the following year – said via Instagram Live: "The years before he signed for Juve we met him many times. He really put you in trouble and he is still proving it.

"I am struck by his desire to keep fit and at high levels. Sometimes even if your desire is so great there is always some stake that gets in the way. He, on the other hand, is always at high levels and truly shows how much he is working to remain among the number one. 

"Will he leave? I don't know but I hope not. He put himself on the line for Juventus and for the interest he brought in Serie A. I hope he stays."

Hernan Crespo labelled Lautaro Martinez a "complete player" and wants the forward to snub Barcelona and stay at Inter.

Martinez, 22, is heavily linked with a move to the LaLiga giants after an impressive season at Inter, scoring 16 goals in 31 games in 2019-20.

Former Inter and Argentina forward Crespo believes Martinez should stay at San Siro and establish himself further before moving on.

"I would like him to stay at Inter because this has been his first year as a starter," he told David de las Heras on YouTube, via Sport.

"I wish he had a bit more solid foundation before another change comes. Trains slow down at the best stations and Lautaro is one of them."

Crespo, now head coach of Defensa y Justicia, won three Serie A titles with Inter, where the former Chelsea forward spent four seasons.

The 44-year-old likes what he has seen from Martinez, who also has nine international goals in 17 appearances for Argentina.

"He is a very serious and focused boy. I really like that. He has a lot of personality," Crespo said.

"He is a complete player who can play in attack both alone and accompanying another striker."

Lionel Scaloni said playing alongside countryman Lionel Messi is better for Inter star Lautaro Martinez amid growing links to Barcelona.

Martinez has been tipped to swap Serie A side Inter for LaLiga champions Barca in the off-season following his exploits in Italy.

The Argentina international forward scored 16 goals in 31 matches across all competitions before the 2019-20 season was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic.

As speculation grows over Martinez's future, Argentina head coach Scaloni discussed the 22-year-old.

"If he plays with Messi he is better, no doubt. Beyond that later he will have to fight for the position as he did in Inter," Scaloni told TyC Sports.

"We have to be calm. If he changes clubs, maybe he does not have to be the undisputed starter, and it will not affect us, as long as he has a number of minutes that allows him to be in force.

"He has a huge future but still has a lot to give."

With Martinez dominating headlines, Scaloni issued a reminder about Sergio Aguero's exploits for Argentina and Manchester City.

Aguero is City's all-time top scorer as he celebrated his 32nd birthday on Tuesday, while he is third on Argentina's overall goals list with 41.

"Talking so much about Lautaro, it is Sergio who is breaking all the records," added Scaloni. "That is why you have to go calmly and wait for the moment of each one."

Juventus must talk to Chelsea if they want to sign Jorginho, according to the Italy star's agent Joao Santos.

Serie A champions Juve are reportedly interested in reuniting head coach Maurizio Sarri with Jorginho in Turin – the pair having worked together at Chelsea and Napoli.

Jorginho has emerged as a possible replacement for Miralem Pjanic, who has been linked to LaLiga champions Barcelona and Ligue 1 holders Paris Saint-Germain.

The latest rumours, however, claim Jorginho and Juve's Federico Bernardeschi could be involved in a swap deal.

Santos, though, denied Juve have made contact regarding Chelsea midfielder Jorginho.

"I only hear about these rumours from the newspapers, because nobody from Juventus has contacted me," Santos told TuttoJuve.com.

"Maurizio Sarri appreciates him very much as a person and a player, they worked very well together, but that's all there is to it right now. The player is focused only on Chelsea, he's resumed training and is preparing for the Premier League restart.

"In my view, it would be difficult for the Bianconeri to buy him today, because the transfer market has changed with the pandemic and Jorginho has a contract with Chelsea until 2023. He is the vice-captain and considered an important player for the squad.

"I don't just mean Juventus, but all the biggest European clubs would struggle to pay that much for one player right now."

Santos added: "If it should happen [a proposal from Juve], I say that anyone who wants Jorginho has to talk to Chelsea and Marina [Granovskaia]. Then we will evaluate together what to do. That would not be a problem."

Olivier Giroud admitted he "very nearly" left Chelsea during the January transfer window before extending his contract with the Premier League club.

Giroud was linked with Serie A sides Inter and Lazio, but last month extended his deal through until the end of next season.

The 33-year-old striker said he was close to leaving Stamford Bridge before receiving assurances from head coach Frank Lampard.

"I was supposed to leave in the January transfer window because I wasn't playing much and I needed more game time to make the France squad for Euro 2020," Giroud told the club's website.

"I very nearly left the club but I really think that God wanted me to stay at Chelsea.

"The manager told me that he couldn't let me leave because he didn't have anyone to replace me. Everyone knows what happened so I won't go back over it but the coach spoke to me privately and told me that he'd give more games.

"He kept his word and what then mattered to me was proving to him that he could count on me when I was called upon."

Giroud arrived at Chelsea from Arsenal in 2018 and has already helped the club win the Europa League and FA Cup.

The France international is eager to win more silverware with Chelsea, while saying he was happy in London.

"I want to keep winning trophies and I want to continue to show the manager that he can count on me," Giroud said.

"Plus, with the whole coronavirus lockdown situation, I didn't really feel comfortable with the idea of moving abroad and uprooting my family. I think a lot about our quality of life and we have a great setup here. I think a lot about my family now."

Lazio are willing to listen to offers for midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic when the transfer market opens.

However, sporting director Igli Tare said Milinkovic-Savic will not be available at a reduced rate due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Serbia international has been heavily linked with Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain, as well as Serie A rivals Inter and Juventus.

Lazio have previously stated Milinkovic-Savic would command a fee of at least €100million and Tare does not expect the financial implications of the COVID-19 crisis to result in the bottom falling out of the market for "first-rate players", a bracket he considers the 25-year-old to be in.

"We certainly don't need to sell right now," Tare told Sky Sport Italia.

"I think a lot will change on the transfer market, because the pandemic is a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence that transformed everything, so we have to be creative, but above all very clear on our planning for the present and future.

"I think that prices won't drop for first-rate players. Obviously for the medium and low-end players, there will be a downward trend.

"On Milinkovic-Savic, the boy's relationship with the city and Lazio will never die because there is a very strong bond that has grown over years.

"On the other hand, considering the situation, his wishes, everything we've talked about, every situation will be evaluated at the right time without any pressure, but above all for the good of both parties.

"If there is a possibility that satisfies the club and the player, it will be taken into consideration. If there is not, he is happy and we are very happy for him to stay."

Tare dismissed reports Lazio are interested in Sport Recife defender Adryelson and would not be drawn on links to Watford forward Luis Suarez.

However, he did confirm the arrival of midfielder Gonzalo Escalante from Eibar would soon be finalised.

"We will shortly be announcing a new signing, Escalante from Eibar," said Tare.

"He is a player who has the right experience but above all the right characteristics to play for Lazio."

Serie A is set to resume from June 20, with Lazio one point adrift of leaders Juventus with 12 games remaining.

Milan and Napoli are in mourning after Gennaro Gattuso's sister Francesca died aged 37.

Francesca, who had worked as a secretary at Milan, was taken ill in early February, with Gattuso absent from his usual post-match duties following the 4-2 win over Sampdoria having been notified of her condition.

Reports circulated early on Tuesday that Gattuso had been informed of her death during training, with the former Italy and Milan midfielder now managing Napoli.

Milan confirmed news of her death with a brief statement on Twitter.

It read: "Francesca Gattuso faced her illness with the same strength and energy she brought to Milanello [Milan's base] and Milan every day.

"Rino [Gennaro], the immense pain you and your family are feeling is also ours. Rest in peace, dear Francesca."

Napoli followed suit shortly after with a statement on behalf of president Aurelio De Laurentiis.

It said: "Aurelio De Laurentiis, with his wife Jacqueline and children Luigi, Edoardo and Valentina, the managers, the technical staff, the team, all of Napoli and Filmauro [Napoli's parent company], strongly embrace Rino Gattuso and join him in his immense pain for the loss of his sister, Francesca.

"We are all close to you with a dear heart, Rino."

Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is attracting plenty of interest in Europe.

Milinkovic-Savic has been linked to the likes of Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United and Manchester City.

Real Madrid, though, are reportedly fighting to bring the Serbia international to the Santiago Bernabeu.

 

TOP STORY – ZIDANE REACHES OUT TO LAZIO STAR

Zinedine Zidane has approached Lazio star Sergej Milinkovic-Savic regarding a move to Real Madrid, according to Le10Sport.

Milinkovic-Savic is a player in demand, linked to Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United and Manchester City.

Zidane is interested in bringing Milinkovic-Savic to the Spanish capital, however, the Serbian midfielder reportedly wants to team up with Neymar and Kylian Mbappe at PSG.

 

ROUND-UP

- Mundo Deportivo says Barcelona are eyeing Ajax and United States sensation Sergino Dest. PSG are also reportedly interested in the 19-year-old full-back as a replacement for Thomas Meunier.

- Atletico Madrid defender Stefan Savic is being chased by Serie A champions Juventus and Ligue 1 outfit Monaco, reports Mundo Deportivo.

Luka Modric to Milan? The Madrid veteran was reportedly poised to swap the Santiago Bernabeu for San Siro at season's end. However, Calciomercato says the move is off after Zvonimir Boban's Milan exit.

- After Mauro Icardi completed a permanent transfer to PSG, Calciomercato reports Napoli striker Arkadiusz Milik is at the top of Juve's list of targets.

- According to Gazzetta dello Sport, Chelsea and Juve are set to hold talks over a deal that would see Jorginho and Federico Bernardeschi swap clubs.

Madrid have been favourites to sign Rennes teenager Eduardo Camavinga, but Le10Sport says PSG are preparing a sensational move for the 17-year-old.

- Could Raheem Sterling swap City for Manchester neighbours United? The Independent reports the Red Devils have placed Sterling high up in priority amid uncertainty over City's Champions League ban. Sterling, though, appears more likely to go to Madrid. RB Leipzig defender Dayot Upamecano and Napoli's Kalidou Koulibaly remain on United's list as they continue to target Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho.

Former Inter president Massimo Moratti said "you cannot hold someone who has the idea of being somewhere else" as Lautaro Martinez continues to be linked with Barcelona.

Martinez has been tipped to swap Serie A's Inter for LaLiga champions Barca, who are determined to sign a long-term replacement for veteran forward Luis Suarez.

Despite Barca's reported interest amid the coronavirus pandemic, Inter sporting director Piero Ausilio insisted Martinez will not be sold for anything less than his €111million buyout clause.

Asked about Argentina international Martinez, Moratti told Sportmediaset: "You can't hold someone who has the idea of ​​being somewhere else. 

"That would put him in a position to remain involuntarily or, in any case with a different impulse, in the same place."

While Martinez's future has dominated headlines, Brescia sensation Sandro Tonali has emerged as a target for Antonio Conte's Inter.

The 20-year-old midfielder – likened to Italian great Andrea Pirlo – has also been linked to the likes of Juventus, Barca and Manchester United.

"Right now here maybe we have to see how [Christian] Eriksen is doing, but otherwise he is a great midfielder," Moratti said. "Then you will need someone on the wings, certainly."

Lega Serie A has revealed the provisional dates for all remaining matchdays, with the competition ending on August 2.

Torino's meeting with Parma at the Stadio Olimpico on June 20 will be the first Serie A game since the league was suspended in March amid the coronavirus pandemic.

That will be the first of four outstanding games in hand to be played over that weekend, with the next round of fixtures starting on June 22.

All kick-off times for games up to and including matchday 35, which will take place from July 21-23, have been set, with weekend fixtures scheduled for 17:15, 19:30 and 21:45 local time (15:15, 17:30 and 19:45 GMT) to avoid the intense afternoon heat during the Italian summer.

There will be just six days between June 20 and July 23 without at least one Serie A fixture.

All games on the final day of the season are provisionally scheduled to kick-off at 21:45, though this could be split into different blocks depending on the situation in the table.

Defending champions Juventus sit one point clear of Lazio at the summit with 12 games remaining, and the pair will meet in a potentially pivotal match at the Allianz Stadium on July 20.

Italy's domestic season is expected to restart with the second legs of the Coppa Italia semi-finals on June 13, though only a June 17 date for the final has been officially confirmed.

It is expected that the Champions League and Europa League will resume in August.

Selected confirmed Serie A fixtures (all times local):

June 28, 17:15 – Milan v Roma
July 2, 19:30 – Atalanta v Napoli
July 4, 17:15 – Juventus v Torino
July 4, 21:45 – Lazio v Milan
July 5, 21:45 – Napoli v Roma
July 7, 21:45 – Milan v Juventus
July 11, 21:45 – Juventus v Atalanta
July 12, 21:45 – Napoli v Milan
July 19, 21:45 – Roma v Inter
July 20, 21:45 – Juventus v Lazio

Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez sent social media into overdrive with a cryptic tweet on Sunday.

Spain international Saul posted a graphic with the words: "New club. I'll announce it [in] three days."

Followers immediately thought an impending transfer was coming, but the 25-year-old has another six years left to run on a contract that includes a reported €150million release clause.

While reports in the Spanish media insist the tweet has nothing to do with Saul's future, it echoed Antoine Griezmann famously announcing his Atletico future in a documentary entitled 'La Decision' in 2018. Griezmann confirmed he would be remaining at the club, only to leave for Barcelona a year later.

It has also been claimed Saul is set to announce he has bought part of a club or even invested in an esports team.

So even though it is highly unlikely Saul will reveal he is leaving the Wanda Metropolitano just a week before LaLiga resumes following its suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic, we look at who could be in the market for one of the world's best midfielders.

 

Manchester United

United have long been credited with an interest in the Atleti star, but they shelled out an initial £46.5m (€55m) on Bruno Fernandes in January. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hopes Fernandes can form a formidable midfield partnership with Paul Pogba, but the Frenchman's future at Old Trafford remains a constant source speculation.

Manchester City

The Red Devils would face competition from local rivals City, though. Fernandinho is not getting any younger and spent much of the 2019-20 campaign at centre-back through necessity, and Pep Guardiola will be looking for a long-term successor who can anchor the club's midfield for the coming years.

Paris Saint-Germain

Any time an elite player is available, PSG will always be linked. The Ligue 1 champions have just completed the signing of Mauro Icardi for a reported €50m and having previously managed to get a UEFA investigation into their finances shut down, they will not be shy in splashing out further to improve their chances of getting their hands of the Champions League trophy.

Barcelona

With Ivan Rakitic expected to be on his way out, Barca's hunt for a new midfielder has reportedly had them looking in the direction of Juventus' Miralem Pjanic, though Arthur refused to be included as part of the deal. The Blaugrana have never been afraid to shell out huge amounts of money and LaLiga's defending champions would no doubt be in the race if Saul was available.

Bayern Munich

Manuel Neuer has signed a new deal at Bayern and David Alaba is set to follow soon, but Thiago Alcantara has reportedly hesitated over extending a contract that is set to expire at the end of next season. Hansi Flick could therefore be in the market for an elite midfielder and Saul would fit the bill. However, Bayern have long maintained they will not spend over €100m on a player.

Other options

If Pjanic is on his way to Barca, and with Adrien Rabiot's future at Juve shrouded in doubt, the Serie A champions would surely see Saul as an ideal candidate to slot into their midfield.

Maurizio Sarri coached Jorginho at Napoli and Chelsea, though, and the Italy international is said to be a target for the Bianconeri. Should he leave Stamford Bridge, the Blues could see Saul as a great replacement.

Sandro Tonali is keen on a move to Juventus or Inter according to Brescia owner Massimo Cellino – news that will apparently come as a blow to Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona.

In-demand midfielder Tonali continued to burnish his reputation this season despite Brescia languishing at the bottom of Serie A.

With relegation looming, the 20-year-old appears certain to move on and he is not short of potential suitors.

Cellino believes Tonali will remain in Italy and told Corriere dello Sport he has no interest in advances from Ligue 1 champions PSG.

"Nasser [Al-Khelaifi, PSG president] would like him in Paris, he wrote to me today, but Tonali doesn't want to go to France," the former Leeds United and Cagliari chief said, before claiming Napoli and Fiorentina were in the hunt but are likely to fall short at the expense of Serie A's traditional giants.

"Inter and Juve are the destinations he prefers. [Napoli president Aurelio] De Laurentiis has offered me €40million, Fiorentina want him too, but his destiny is pretty much written."

Tonali was also purportedly the subject of a part-exchange offer from Barcelona that came up short.

"Before COVID, Barcelona had reached €65m plus two very interesting young players valued €7.5m each, one was a full-back," Cellino added.

"I believe that the Catalans received an answer they didn't like. And not from Tonali."

Brescia will resume their seemingly doomed 2019-20 season against Fiorentina on June 22 and Cellino insists no final decision will be made on Tonali's future until the campaign is concluded.

"I'm not dealing with anyone. There are still 12 games to play and the boy must remain calm," he added.

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