Arthur has been named in Barcelona's squad for Saturday's trip to Celta Vigo amid intense speculation regarding a potential switch to Juventus.

Brazil international Arthur is supposedly set to be involved in a swap deal that sees Miralem Pjanic arrive at Camp Nou, with some of the belief he has failed to adequately replace Xavi since arriving from Gremio in 2018.

Despite the media reports, Barca coach Quique Setien insisted in his Friday news conference that the club have not told him the 23-year-old is leaving.

But Setien did hint there was some truth in the rumoured interest from Juve, saying that "if it happens, I will try to convince him to leave a good impression".

Arthur will seemingly be available for selection at Balaidos on Saturday having been named in Barca's travelling party, though a starting berth appears unlikely after Setien suggested Riqui Puig will get the nod.

Victory in Vigo will lift Barca back to LaLiga's summit ahead of Real Madrid, though Los Blancos will expect to move ahead of the Blaugrana again on Sunday when they go to rock-bottom Espanyol.

Wolves coach Nuno Espirito Santo is adamant the futures of star players such as Ruben Neves and Adama Traore are not tied to the club qualifying for the Champions League.

Nuno's side sit sixth in the Premier League after 31 matches and certainly appear to be in with a good chance of securing Europa League football, though a top-four finish is not beyond them yet either.

However, five points separate them from Chelsea in fourth, and even if Manchester City's Champions League ban is upheld, Manchester United are in pole position to take the final qualification spot for Europe's elite competition – though they are only ahead of Wolves on goal difference.

Wolves could still qualify for the Champions League through the Europa League. Nuno's men drew 1-1 with Olympiacos in the away leg of their last-16 tie, which is to be completed in August before the last eight is contested in Germany, the final to be held at the RheinEnergieStadion in Cologne.

Neves, Traore and Raul Jimenez have all been key components for Wolves over the past two seasons, but there is a sense they could be outgrowing the club as other teams reportedly weigh up potential moves.

Nuno insists Wolves do not need to qualify for the Champions League to keep their squad intact, however.

"I don't think that's the reason they are here," Nuno said when asked if Champions League qualification is vital for certain players.

"The reason is they enjoy working together, so we don't have to achieve anything to retain them. At no point am I thinking about it.

"We don't think about that [the top four]. There's no race for anything, the race is to compete, improve and make good games. This is the challenge for every team in this moment.

"I'm very proud of the work we have been doing. We have begun to build something, we did the right things and we are still in a building process.

"We have achieved important and remarkable things but still have a long way to go, there is still a lot of room to improve.

"When we started we didn't know what was in front of us but we know we had a fantastic club to take care of and try to become as huge as it was in its past history."

Hansi Flick hit out at the "so-called experts" who do not see the value in Thiago Alcantara as he reiterated his desire to keep the Bayern Munich midfielder.

Thiago's contract with Bayern runs out in 2021, and while the club have extended the deals of others such as Thomas Muller and Manuel Neuer, they have so far been unsuccessful in convincing the Spaniard to follow suit.

Given the form of Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka at the base of the Bayern midfield since the season resumed last month, some fans may be wondering if Thiago's extension is imperative.

The 29-year-old, who is currently out injured with a groin problem, is not renowned for his scoring prowess - having found the net just three times in 24 Bundesliga appearances this term - and he has not registered an assist in a campaign that has seen Bayern win an eighth straight title.

However, as a ball-playing central midfielder who came through Barcelona's famed La Masia academy, Thiago's qualities are obvious to Flick, who remains desperate to keep him despite links with newly crowned Premier League champions Liverpool.

"There is no [contract] news. We always talk, almost every day, but there is no news," Flick told a news conference before Bayern's final Bundesliga game of the season against Wolfsburg.

"I see him every day at practice and at the games. There are always so-called experts who have their own opinions. When you see him on the pitch and in training, you see his extraordinary quality in possession of the ball.

"But he has now also shown that he can play against the ball. For me there are no two opinions about Thiago's quality.

"He is an exceptional player who gives a team that certain something. That's my opinion and there is no other one."

The focus is not just on potential outgoings at Bayern Munich, who are expected to be Leroy Sane's next destination after it was confirmed he would be departing Manchester City either this year or next.

Bayern have also been linked with a move for Real Madrid right-back Achraf Hakimi, who has spent the past two seasons on loan with rivals Borussia Dortmund.

A third campaign at Signal Iduna Park looks unlikely given BVB signed Thomas Meunier on Thursday, yet, amid suggestions Hakimi could be bound for Inter, Flick would not be drawn on Bayern's possible interest.

"He is currently under contract at Dortmund and I think he still belongs to Real Madrid," Flick added.

"Therefore, I don't have to worry about that. It's very difficult at the moment anyway concerning transfers. That's why I would like to stay out of it.

"Hasan [Salihamidzic, Bayern sporting director] and I are in a very good exchange. I have every confidence that we will have a very good team for the new season."

Dani Ceballos accepts it is difficult to see a future for himself at Real Madrid where he is an important player and confirmed a return to Real Betis is an option.

Ceballos, 23, joined Madrid from Betis in 2017 after developing into one of LaLiga's most promising young players, but he found the step-up difficult.

With numerous high-profile players occupying the central and playmaking roles he would ordinarily fill, Ceballos had to be content with playing back-up, making just 17 league starts across his two seasons at the Santiago Bernabeu before joining Arsenal on loan this term.

Life has not been much more straightforward with the Gunners, who have struggled for form and started going through a potentially significant transition period.

Nevertheless, Ceballos suggests he is happier this season and he cannot envisage being considered a key player at Madrid as he targets a place in Spain's squad for next year's European Championship.

"My goal is to play next year and it will be difficult at Real Madrid to play 40 games being important," he told El Larguero.

"This year I have been happy playing and next year I want to do the same,

"It is my goal [to be in the Spain squad]. I will give it my all and it will depend on me. If I give a high level, I am sure that I will be there and we will have a great European Championship."

Ceballos retains a strong affinity for boyhood club Betis, as he showed when posting a photo of himself wearing the team's jersey prior to their 2-0 defeat to bitter rivals Sevilla earlier this month.

A return to the Benito Villamarin is not out of the question and he acknowledges LaLiga is a good fit for him stylistically, but he wants to discuss his future with Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane first.

"[Betis] is an option. I don't close the door on playing for any club. LaLiga suits me well, but I'm also happy at Arsenal and I have to have respect for them, so I am focused on the remaining days.

"I have to make the decision, I own my future. I miss playing in Spain because it is a league where I have played all my life, but, well, England has also been good for a year.

"I want to be where I am most comfortable playing. Zidane told me that the best thing was for me to play a year on loan and gain experience, so I will have a chat with him. We will have to sit down and see the best option."

Ceballos is on loan at Arsenal until the end of the season, and his Madrid contract runs out in 2023.

Quique Setien says he has not been told Arthur will be leaving Barcelona for Juventus, urging the Brazil international to stay focused for the rest of the season.

Arthur is reportedly set to join Serie A champions Juve for €80million, with the more experienced Miralem Pjanic potentially heading in the opposite direction for €70m.

Barca take on Celta Vigo at Balaidos on Saturday and Setien insisted the former Gremio midfielder remains available for selection and could feature.

"In principle I still have Arthur. He is important like the rest. He will train and in principle he will travel and has the possibility of playing," said the Barca boss.

"I hope all this noise does not affect him and that if he plays, he tries to give the best of himself.

"Any player who is in such a situation must make it clear the season is not over, win a title and leave a good impression until the last day he is here.

"I do not take it for granted that he is going to leave. The club has not informed me Arthur is leaving. He will be with us until the last game of the season.

"If it happens, I will try to convince him to leave a good impression. The most important thing is to be honest until the last day and I am convinced he is."

Setien was unwilling to comment on the possible signing of Pjanic and suggested Arthur has struggled to adapt to the style of football he wants Barca to play.

"Since he has been with me, he has put a lot of interest in doing what we asked him to do," Setien said.

"Maybe he lacked a little continuity. It is not easy to change things in a footballer that other coaches told him were very good. When they tell him it is very good to keep the ball and we come and we want to play two touches, it is difficult.

"Yes, it's possible he lacked some physicality, but he is on the right track."

Peter Bosz anticipates Kai Havertz will remain at Bayer Leverkusen for the resumption of the Europa League in August.

Germany international Havertz has had another fine campaign with Leverkusen, registering 12 goals and six assists in the Bundesliga in 2019-20 having scored 17 times last term, and he is under contract until 2022.

Transfer talk surrounding Havertz has continued in recent weeks, though, with Real Madrid, Chelsea and Bayern Munich all linked with a move for the 21-year-old attacking midfielder, and Leverkusen fans may fear the speculation will only intensify when the Bundesliga finishes this weekend.

However, Leverkusen face Bayern Munich in the DFB-Pokal final on July 4 before resuming their Europa League campaign in August with the second leg of their last-16 tie against Rangers, who they beat 3-1 first time around.

And though Havertz's international team-mate Timo Werner is departing RB Leipzig for Chelsea before their Champions League campaign resumes, Leverkusen boss Bosz does not expect a similar scenario to happen with his star man.

"I don't feel that he is thinking too much about transferring. Neither are we," Bosz told a news conference.

"He still has a contract with us and if nothing happens I think he will be here next season. That will be the case tomorrow, in the cup final and when we play the Europa League."

Leverkusen head into the last round of Bundesliga fixtures two points behind Borussia Monchengladbach, who occupy the final Champions League qualification spot.

Both sides are at home - Leverkusen hosting Mainz and Gladbach entertaining Hertha Berlin - and Bosz hopes the two teams' experience of last year will play in his side's favour.

Last season Gladbach started the final day in fourth but were beaten by Borussia Dortmund while Leverkusen thrashed Hertha to move up from fifth.

"We saw and showed that it is possible," Bosz added.

"At that time they played against Dortmund. It may be something different than this time against Hertha. But we still believe in it."

Erling Haaland has promised he is not already plotting his next move after making a breathtaking start to life in the Bundesliga with Borussia Dortmund.

After a stunning start to the season with Salzburg, the striker has 13 goals from 10 starts and four substitute appearances in the German top flight with Dortmund.

That is form that has drawn interest across Europe in a player who was already coveted by many of the top clubs on the continent.

Haaland was strongly linked with Juventus before joining Dortmund in January, and the 19-year-old stressed he was happy with his decision.

Asked whether Dortmund was anything more than a stepping stone in his career, he told the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung: "I don't think in such categories.

"I don't think too much about the future either, but I live in the present and decide in the here and now what is best for my career.

"For this reason, I chose BVB with total conviction in winter. Dortmund is one of the biggest clubs in the world, and I signed a long-term contract here and, as you say, I have just arrived. So I'm not already thinking about leaving the club."

Haaland turns 20 in July and the Norway international, who was born in England, is confident he made a shrewd choice in joining Dortmund.

"Playing a lot is the most important thing for a player of my age," he said. "I was able to appear from the start, in all competitions, right up to the knockout games in the Champions League.

"This is by no means a matter of course, and it gives me a good feeling that it happened as the people in charge told me it would in our talks."

Haaland has experienced a familiar story of Bayern Munich running away with the Bundesliga title, with Dortmund having to settle for second place.

It remains to be seen whether Dortmund's squad breaks up before next season, with plenty of attention on winger Jadon Sancho and full-back Achraf Hakimi, the latter due to return to Real Madrid after his loan spell.

Haaland was non-committal when asked whether he would try to persuade both to stay.

He said: "I like to play with the two of them, but it's not for me to say anything about their future."

Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich appear to be keen on adding more local talent to their squad.

Spaniard Thiago Alcantara is reportedly unwilling to extend his Bayern contract beyond 2020-21.

So, Bayern could use the star midfielder in their efforts to prise Germany international Kai Havertz from Bayer Leverkusen.

 

TOP STORY – BAYERN WANT THIAGO OUT AND HAVERTZ IN

Bayern Munich want to sell Thiago Alcantara to fund their move for Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz, according to Kicker.

Thiago reportedly wants to leave Bayern amid links to Liverpool after opting against a new deal in Bavaria.

Now, Bayern are looking to offload Thiago for €60million (£53m) in order to sign Havertz for €80m.

Havertz has also been linked to Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United and Real Madrid.

 

ROUND-UP

- Staying in Munich and Kicker also claims Bayern have joined Borussia Dortmund and United in the race for Birmingham City teenager Jude Bellingham.

- TF1 says Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi has been in contact with Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Atletico Madrid and Inter over an exit from London.

Liverpool have made a big offer to sign Wolves speedster Adama Traore, according to Mundo Deportivo. Traore has also been linked to the likes of Barca and Madrid.

- According to Fichajes, Tottenham have made an offer for in-demand Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes. The likes of Napoli, Everton and Madrid are also looking to sign the Brazilian.

- Is Hellas Verona's Marash Kumbulla set for Lazio? Gianluca Di Marzio reports Lazio have tabled an offer for the defender, who is also wanted by Juventus and Inter.

- Could Tanguy Ndombele and Philippe Coutinho swap clubs? The Independent says Barca have reached out to Tottenham over an exchange deal involving either Coutinho or Nelson Semedo for wantaway Spurs midfielder Ndombele.

Arsenal could make moves for Chelsea's Willian or Coutinho, according to the Daily Mail.

Milan are in talks over the return of Chelsea midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko, says Gazzetta journalist Nicolo Schira. Bakayoko spent the 2018-19 season on loan at San Siro.

Juventus head coach Maurizio Sarri says he has no concerns about Miralem Pjanic's suitability to his plans despite talk of an imminent swap deal involving Barcelona's Arthur.

There is a growing belief that the two clubs have agreed to a deal that would see Juve pay Barca €10million and send Pjanic to Camp Nou in exchange for Brazil international Arthur.

Rumours of such a deal have persisted for many weeks, with both clubs said to see the arrangement as a useful way of balancing the books amid the financial uncertainty brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, but Arthur was reportedly not interested in a move until a change of heart in the past few days.

Speaking ahead of Juve's Serie A clash with Lecce on Friday, which could stretch their lead over Lazio at the top of the table to seven points, Sarri insisted he has not been told by the club that Pjanic is bound for the exit.

He also made it clear he is not pushing for the midfielder to leave despite suggestions Pjanic is not wholly compatible with Sarri's preferred system.

"If he is sold, it'll be for other reasons. He is not under discussion from a technical point of view," he said on Thursday.

"But the club haven't given me any signals in that sense, so I don't take it into consideration.

"The discussions between him and me are on technical and mental aspects. He mustn't worry if he misses a game, but he has to react quickly.

"I'm happy with Miralem and I'm sure, in that role, he can improve further."

When asked specifically about Arthur, Sarri replied: "Arthur is a Barcelona player and I don't want to talk about him."

Sarri had appeared irked by the fact Barca counterpart Quique Setien spoke about the rumours this week, claiming Arthur was affected by the speculation.

"Given how things are, we need all of our players and we'll try and isolate ourselves from this situation and the media who are reporting on and talking about these rumours," Setien said.

"We need him to be focused. It's true it is a difficult situation but we have to overcome it somehow."

Liverpool have confirmed Nathaniel Clyne will leave the club when his contract expires at the end of the month.

The right-back moved to Anfield in June 2015 when Brendan Rodgers was in charge, joining from Southampton for a reported fee of £12.5million.

An England international, Clyne became a regular during his first two years with the Reds, making 70 Premier League appearances and playing in the EFL Cup final loss to Manchester City in February 2016.

However, the 29-year-old has struggled with injuries since, including a back issue that ruled him out for the majority of the 2017-18 season.

Clyne, who had a loan spell at Bournemouth last year, played in 103 games for the Reds and scored twice.

"Everyone at Liverpool Football Club would like to thank Nathaniel for his service and wish him all the best in his future career," Liverpool said in a statement to confirm Clyne's departure.

Belgium international Thomas Meunier has signed a four-year deal with Borussia Dortmund, having been available on a free transfer from Paris Saint-Germain.

The 28-year-old right back spent four seasons in the French capital, winning three Ligue 1 titles as well as a pair of Coupe de la Ligue and Coupe de France trophies.

However, he is one of those departing PSG when his contract expires at the end of this month - along with Edinson Cavani and Thiago Silva - and he has quickly found a new home with Bundesliga side Dortmund, who he will join for next season.

"Borussia Dortmund play exactly the football that I want to play: exciting, authentic and natural," former Club Brugge defender Meunier said in quotes published on the club's website.

"BVB is known for their enthusiastic fans and the atmosphere during the [Champions League] game with Paris at Signal Iduna Park really influenced my decision. 

"I am ambitious and, like with Bruges and Paris, I would like to win titles with Dortmund."

Meunier, who has been capped 40 times by Belgium, could fill the void left by Real Madrid loanee Achraf Hakimi as his two-season loan spell is due to end when the Bundesliga finishes this weekend.

Dortmund want to keep Hakimi for a third successive campaign but other clubs are thought to be interested in the 21-year-old, even if he does not remain with his parent club.

On Meunier, BVB's sporting director Michael Zorc added: "Thomas Meunier is a player who has demonstrated his quality at the highest level in the Champions League and in the national team over a long period of time and will really benefit us with his experience."

Andy Carroll and Javier Manquillo have signed new deals with Newcastle United, while Matty Longstaff has agreed to a short-term extension.

Carroll has yet to score since re-joining his boyhood club prior to the start of the 2019-20 season, making 16 appearances in all competitions but only four starts in his second spell at St James' Park. 

The striker, who left for Liverpool on deadline day in January 2011 and then moved on to West Ham, will remain at Newcastle for another year. 

As for Manquillo, the Spanish full-back is now tied to the Premier League club until 2024 after penning a four-year contract, with manager Steve Bruce delighted to retain the duo. 

"I'm delighted Javier Manquillo and Andy Carroll have extended their contracts longer term," Bruce told the club's website. 

"They have both made important contributions this season and I'm really pleased we can continue to call on them beyond the summer." 

Longstaff's long-term future still remains unclear, however. The midfielder's contract was due to expire at the end of June but he has now signed on for the rest of the campaign.

Nabil Bentaleb and Danny Rose will be staying beyond this month too after their loan deals from Schalke and Tottenham respectively were extended. 

Newcastle also confirmed they have an agreement in principle with Inter to keep Valentino Lazaro, who arrived on loan in January, but Rob Elliot, Jack Colback and Jamie Sterry will all be leaving when their contracts expire. 

Lucien Favre will remain at Borussia Dortmund next season and sporting director Michael Zorc hopes to tie Giovanni Reyna down to a new contract.

Dortmund's failure to dethrone Bayern Munich for the second straight campaign, having been in strong positions on both occasions, led to questions about Favre's future.

The Swiss coach has one year left on his contract but Zorc said BVB will head into 2020-21 unchanged, with talks over a possible extension to follow.

"We will go into the next season with the same [management] line-up and want to attack once more," said Zorc at a news conference to preview their final game of the Bundesliga season against Hoffenheim on Saturday.

"We have a good, trusting relationship and will conduct the talks in due course."

Reyna, 17, made his first Bundesliga start against RB Leipzig last weekend and set up Erling Haaland for the opening goal in a 2-0 victory that ensured BVB will finish the season in second.

The United States Under-17 international, who has a contract until June 2021, has impressed in his first campaign with the senior team and is in line for an extension.

"Lucien and I very much agree about Gio. We believe he has a good and bright future ahead of him," said Zorc.

"We are in good discussions with him about tying him to BVB for as long as possible as soon as he turns 18.

"This is a success story that we want to continue."

Dortmund are expected to add Paris Saint-Germain full-back Thomas Meunier to their squad for next season on a free transfer.

However, Zorc still hopes to agree a deal with Real Madrid that will see right-back Achraf Hakimi spend a third straight year at Signal Iduna Park.

"We are interested in finding another solution with Real Madrid and him, so he can play for BVB again next season," he said.

Bayern Munich have signed teenage winger Mamin Sanyang from Hoffenheim on a three-year contract.

The 17-year-old forward, who moved to Germany from Gambia when he was 10, will play for Bayern's Under-19 team next season.

Across 19 appearances in the U17 Bundesliga and two in the U19 division in 2019-20, Sanyang scored nine goals and laid on four assists.

"Mamin is an extremely fast and dangerous winger. We see him as an ideal reinforcement for our Under-19 team and are very happy he will wear the Bayern jersey in the future," said academy manager Jochen Sauer.

Sanyang has followed in the footsteps of Germany U17 forward Armindo Sieb, who in May agreed to swap Hoffenheim for Bayern.

Hoffenheim have also seen 17-year-old left-back Kerim Calhanoglu, cousin of Milan midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu, and U17 captain Luca Campanile agree moves to Schalke.

Amadou Onana, 18, in January agreed to join Hamburg from the 2020-21 campaign, while 16-year-old Melkamu Frauendorf is reportedly a target for Liverpool.

Kalidou Koulibaly has been a man in demand for quite some time.

Clubs in Europe have reportedly queued up to sign the Napoli centre-back.

Koulibaly could finally get his move, with a Premier League giant reportedly working on a deal.

 

TOP STORY – CITY FRONTRUNNERS FOR KOULIBALY

Manchester City are favourites to prise Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli, according to Duncan Castles of the Sunday Times.

Koulibaly has long been linked with a Napoli exit – City, Liverpool, Manchester United, Tottenham, Real Madrid and Barcelona all reported admirers.

But it seems the star defender is more likely to join Pep Guardiola's City than Premier League leaders Liverpool.

 

ROUND-UP

Edinson Cavani is among the alternatives to Inter's Lautaro Martinez for Barcelona, says Sky Sport Italia. Barca want to sign Martinez but the LaLiga champions are struggling to meet Inter's demands. Now Cavani, who will not sign a new contract with Paris Saint-Germain and is a free agent, could end up at Camp Nou. The Uruguayan forward has also been linked to Inter and Atletico Madrid. Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is also on the list, though Juventus are reportedly eyeing the disgruntled Gabon international.

Juve and Barca have reached an agreement over a swap deal involving Arthur and Miralem Pjanic, reports Goal. Arthur had been reluctant to leave Barca for Juve but the Spanish giants could receive a fee of €70million.

Liverpool are frontrunners to sign Bayern Munich star Thiago Alcantara, says Bild. The Spanish midfielder had been set to extend his contract but he has apparently backed out of a new deal.

Borussia Dortmund may keep Jadon Sancho after all. The England international has been tipped to join United at the end of the season. Unless Dortmund receive £117m (€130m), they will continue with Sancho, reports Sport Bild, which also claims the Bundesliga club could offer a bumper new deal.

- Gianluca Di Marzio says Lazio and Inter are battling over the signing of Hellas Verona defender Marash Kumbulla. Inter have reportedly made a €25milion offer for Kumbulla, who has also been linked to Juve.

Chelsea and Real Madrid are going head-to-head for Bayer Leverkusen's Kai Havertz, claims WinSports. Chelsea are believed to have submitted an offer worth £8m (€8.8m) more than Madrid's bid.

Fred is ready to discuss a new long-term contract with United, the Sun reports. After a difficult start to life at Old Trafford, the Brazilian has established himself as a key member of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side.

- According to Le10 Sport, Madrid and Barca are interested in Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi.

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