Inter Miami have their sights set on a big-name signing, with Lionel Messi reportedly among the possibilities.

With David Beckham among their owners, Inter Miami are preparing for their debut MLS season beginning next month.

Messi has been linked with the MLS club previously and those rumours are persisting.

 

TOP STORY – MESSI STILL A TARGET FOR INTER MIAMI

Barcelona great Messi is among the stars who could sign for Inter Miami, according to OKdiario.

Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric and Paris Saint-Germain striker Edinson Cavani are also possibilities, the report says.

Messi reportedly bought an apartment in Miami in December, while he can leave Barcelona for free at season's end despite being contracted until 2021.

ROUND-UP

- Juventus have other plans should Paul Pogba not return to the club from Manchester United in the close season. Sport reports the Serie A giants are considering a move for Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara, whose contract expires next year.

- Barcelona will announce Leganes striker Martin Braithwaite as their latest signing on Thursday, according to AS, which reports the LaLiga club are set to pay €18million for the Denmark international.

- Linked with RB Leipzig star Timo Werner, Liverpool are seemingly considering their options. Bild reports the European champions are tracking Milot Rashica, the 23-year-old who has scored 10 goals in 21 games for struggling Werder Bremen this season.

- Hansi Flick's future is unclear. Bayern Munich will wait until May to make a decision on the head coach, who has attracted interest from other clubs, according to Bild.

- Could Adam Lallana be set for a reunion with Brendan Rodgers? Sky Sports reports Leicester City have approached the Liverpool midfielder's representatives about a move at season's end. Lallana and Rodgers worked together at Anfield and the 31-year-old is coming out of contract.

- After an initial move for Marcos Alonso in January failed, Inter are still considering the Chelsea left-back, according to CalcioMercato. However, the report says the Serie A giants are unwilling to pay Chelsea's asking price of €30m (£25.1m).

Thiago Alcantara was frustrated by Bayern Munich's display against RB Leipzig as they were held to a 0-0 home draw, while Peter Gulacsi believed the visitors were worthy of a win.

Bayern missed the chance to move four points clear of Leipzig at the top of the Bundesliga on Sunday, though Hansi Flick's side were ultimately fortunate not to be overtaken by their opponents.

A lacklustre second-half performance from the defending champions handed Leipzig the initiative, with only dreadful misses from Marcel Sabitzer and Timo Werner sparring Bayern's blushes.

The home side did have a penalty awarded but then overturned after a VAR check, while Peter Gulacsi made a stunning late save to deny Leon Goretzka a winner, but Thiago acknowledged the overall performance was not good enough to earn three points.

"We didn't play the game that we had to play. We were playing at home and we have to win all of the games which we play here," Thiago said.

"We played very well in the first half but then we let it go and didn't control the game.

"It's not about attack or defence, it's about the team and it's a team game. The energy was not enough to be dominant in the game, we were not in our best mood in the game, that's why we didn't enjoy it.

"The good thing is each game depends on us. That's a good thing. We work a lot to be in the place where we are right now but we have to improve a lot."

Meanwhile, Leipzig goalkeeper Gulacsi was left disappointed with his team's failure to snatch the win, even though the visitors' executed Julian Nagelsmann's gameplan.

"I think today the plan worked really well," the Hungary international said.

"We wanted to stay really compact against Bayern - they have such offensive quality, they have scored many goals, so we wanted to stay stable.

"But we also wanted to threaten and to use our speed up front, and in the second half, we could do that. Maybe a draw is a fair result but we played our best game so far here.

"It's not about the position in the league, it's more that we had the chance to beat the best team in Germany away from home. It's a step forward but I think there was more in the game [than a point]."

Ivan Perisic is facing at least month out with a broken ankle, having reportedly sustained the injury when being tackled by Bayern Munich team-mate Alvaro Odriozola in training.

Interim head coach Hansi Flick confirmed the winger could be sidelined for upwards of four weeks after metal screws were inserted to fix the damaged joint.

According to Bild, Perisic was taken away for treatment after Odriozola, who joined Bayern on loan from Real Madrid last month, accidentally hurt his right ankle during a training session early on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters ahead of Wednesday's DFB-Pokal third-round clash with Hoffenheim, Flick said: "We thought it wasn't that bad, but he has a fracture in his outer ankle.

"It needs to be screwed back on, which means he is out for four weeks and only then can he start building up training again.

"These things happen in football, but we'd have liked it to have been different."

The news is a setback for Bayern, who have won six Bundesliga games in a row to return to the top of the table.

The champions face a difficult week, with the visit of Hoffenheim followed by a clash with title rivals RB Leipzig on Sunday.

Fortunately for Flick, forward Serge Gnabry is "100 per cent fit" once more, while defender Lucas Hernandez is close to a return and Kingsley Coman could be back for the Leipzig match.

"He will be in the squad tomorrow," Flick said of Hernandez. "He is making progress, but it's important for him to be there, so he can get some game time."

Bayern's form prompted president Herbert Hainer to suggest Flick could be given the job on a permanent basis at the end of the season, telling Passauer Neue Presse: "If he keeps winning like this, there is no alternative."

Asked about those comments, Flick said: "I know Bayern can be different from week to week. Obviously, you're happy to read something like that.

"Bayern have to see for themselves what they want for the future."

For now, Flick is focused on reaching the next round of the DFB-Pokal, a challenge he hopes will be made easier by the recent form of Thiago Alcantara, who has scored in each of Bayern's past three league games.

"He's an outstanding footballer, he can play both as a six and an eight and he has his attacking qualities," Flick said.

"He said before the season that he can score eight goals, so he has five more to go!"

Virgil van Dijk, Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland are the headline inclusions in FIFA Ultimate Team's latest Team of the Week, which contains a plethora of superstars.

Liverpool defender Van Dijk played a vital role as Liverpool beat bitter rivals Manchester United 2-0 on Sunday, scoring the opening goal and producing a generally commanding display at centre-back.

Paris Saint-Germain talent Mbappe leads the line following his brace against former employers Monaco in last week's 4-1 win, taking his Ligue 1 goal tally to 13 for the season.

The Frenchman is joined in attack by Haaland, who enjoyed a stunning debut for Borussia Dortmund.

Haaland came on in the 56th minute with Dortmund 3-1 down, but he went on to score a hat-trick and inspire a turnaround which saw Lucien Favre's side win 5-3 at Augsburg.

That trio are by no means the only big-name players with new in-form cards set to be available – below, we have the full squad.

TEAM OF THE WEEK

GK: Nick Pope (Burnley) – 82

RB: Damian Suarez (Getafe) – 82

CB: Dayot Upamecano (RB Leipzig) – 81

CB: Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool) – 92

CM: Lucas Leiva (Lazio) – 86

CM: Casemiro (Real Madrid) – 88

CDM: Thiago Alcantara (Bayern Munich) – 88

CM: Sergio Canales (Real Betis) – 87

ST: Raul Jimenez (Wolves) – 85

ST: Kylian Mbappe (PSG) – 92

ST: Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund) – 86

SUBSTITUTES

GK: Matheus (Sporting Braga) – 81

CB: Ciaran Clark (Newcastle United) – 81

RM: Edin Visca (Istanbul Basaksehir) – 86

CAM: Hans Vanaken (Club Brugge) – 83

LM: Ante Rebic (Milan) – 83

ST: Michael Gregoritsch (Schalke) – 82

ST: Jhon Cordoba (Cologne) – 81

RESERVES

CB: Esteban Burgos (Eibar) – 78

RM: Chiedozie Ogbene (Rotherham United) – 72

ST: Alexander Sorloth (Trabzonspor) – 79

ST: Ante Budimir (Real Mallorca) – 79

ST: Ernesto Torregrossa (Brescia) – 78

Bayern Munich produced a much-improved second-half showing to overcome Hertha Berlin 4-0 at the Olympiastadion and climb into second place in the Bundesliga.

Hertha entered Sunday's game unbeaten in four matches, keeping a clean sheet in three of those, and they held firm until the hour mark on Sunday when Thomas Muller opened the scoring.

Robert Lewandowski added another goal to his tally from the penalty spot and Thiago Alcantara scored a thunderous third as the reigning champions turned on the style in the capital.

A fourth top-flight win in a row was rounded off by Ivan Perisic's late header as Hansi Flick's men recorded back-to-back away league wins for the first time since March and leapfrogged Borussia Monchengladbach into second spot, four points behind RB Leipzig.

Lewandowski squandered a big chance to put Bayern ahead after 25 minutes, the Poland international poking wide when put under pressure by Rune Jarstein.

The Hertha goalkeeper was equal to Lewandowski's next attempt and also easily dealt with weak efforts from Philippe Coutinho and Perisic in a goalless first half.

Perisic twice went close early in the second half and played a big part in Bayern's eventual breakthrough, climbing highest to head Leon Goretzka's cross into the path of Muller, who rifled home on the half-volley.

Bayern were denied an instant second by VAR, with Lewandowski adjudged to have headed the ball out of Jarstein's hands before tapping it over the line.

However, Lewandowski did manage to double his side's tally with 17 minutes remaining, converting from the penalty spot after Lukas Klunter pulled Goretzka back in the box.

Thiago picked out the top corner to put Bayern out of sight after finding a pocket of space and Perisic rounded off an ultimately emphatic win with a back-post header.

Manchester United could be set to land the most sought-after striker in Europe.

According to a new report, Erling Haaland has identified the Red Devils as his preferred choice from a long list of suitors containing Juventus, Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig.

The teenager met with the two Bundesliga clubs in midweek, but United appear to have moved to the front of the queue.

 

TOP STORY – HAALAND SENDS MESSAGE TO SOLSKJAER

Salzburg star Haaland has told compatriot Ole Gunnar Solskjaer he wants to move to Old Trafford, according to the Mirror.

United have been linked with the 19-year-old for several months and the Norwegian connection could lead him to the Premier League.

However, Haaland's high-profile agent Mino Raiola reportedly wants to keep all options on the table as the January transfer window moves nearer.

The striker's father, Alf-Inge, was said to have visited United's training ground in November, while Haaland held talks with Bundesliga teams Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig this week.

 

ROUND-UP

- Inter's firm interest in Fiorentina winger Federico Chiesa could lead to a transfer tug-of-war with Serie A title rivals Juventus, according to CalcioMercato.

- The Nerazzurri have been linked Alessandro Florenzi, but Atalanta are now in pole position to sign the Italy international if he leaves Roma in January, says Gazzetta dello Sport.

- Rest time might be at a minimum for Kylian Mbappe when the club season winds down. According to Le Parisien, French Football Federation president Noel Le Graet will give the Paris Saint-Germain star the chance to compete at the Olympic Games in Tokyo, which begin less than two weeks after the Euro 2020 final.

- Chelsea are considering launching a January bid for Leeds United loanee Ben White, claims the Daily Mail. Brighton and Hove Albion, White's parent club, are reportedly willing to accept offers of £25million.

- Mundo Deportivo suggests LaLiga heavyweights Barcelona are monitoring Thiago Alcantara's situation amid rumours the midfielder has become unhappy at Bayern Munich. Thiago swapped Barca for Bayern in 2013.

- West Ham's victory over Southampton will not be enough to save Manuel Pellegrini from the sack, says the Daily Star. Carlo Ancelotti and David Moyes are among the possible replacements.

The race to sign Erling Haaland has taken another turn.

According to reports, the in-demand striker flew to Germany on Wednesday to hold talks with Borussia Dortmund.

Haaland has become one of Europe's hottest properties following a prolific run of form for Salzburg.

 

TOP STORY – HAALAND MEETS WITH DORTMUND

Could talented teenager Haaland be the next bright young forward to join Bundesliga side Dortmund?

Local newspaper Ruhr Nachrichten and Radio 91.2 claim the Norwegian and his high-profile agent Mino Raiola arrived at Dortmund Airport and were met by a BVB official the day after Salzburg's Champions League loss to Liverpool.

Haaland played 75 minutes against the holders but was unable to add to his impressive eight-goal haul in Europe this season.

Manchester United, Juventus and Real Madrid are among the other heavyweights reportedly showing interest in the 19-year-old.

 

ROUND-UP

- Salzburg could be about to part with more than one highly-rated attacker. The Telegraph says Premier League outfit Wolves are preparing to make a move for Hwang Hee-chan, who could cost around £21million (€25m).

- Roma will allow Alessandro Florenzi to leave for €25m in January, claims CalcioMercato. Inter are said to be his strongest suitors, with fellow Serie A sides Napoli and Fiorentina also in contention.

- Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara is unhappy with his reduced role under interim boss Hansi Flick and is thinking of returning to Spain, reports Bild.

- Spain Under-21 international Carles Alena is set to join Real Betis on loan from LaLiga leaders Barcelona, according to Mundo Deportivo.

- ESPN reporter Julien Laurens believes this season will be Thomas Tuchel's last in charge of Paris Saint-Germain. Tuchel has been heavily linked to Bundesliga champions Bayern.

The father of Bayern Munich's Thiago Alcantara said the midfielder is more than happy at the Bundesliga giants.

Thiago, 28, is in his seventh season at Bayern, a stint full of trophies and regular success.

Given the midfielder's Spanish roots, and the fact he progressed through the Barcelona system, a return to LaLiga has always seemed a possibility.

Yet Thiago's father, Mazinho, told Mundo Deportivo: "He is very happy.

"It is his seventh season, he has one and a half more to finish his contract.

"He is in a spectacular club, which has made him a great contract and has a great respect for players and former players.

"When I go there, I realise that it is something out of the ordinary."

Asked what move Thiago will make in the future, Mazinho was unsure.

"I do not know what will happen," he added.

"I don't know if he will want to return to Spain or be somewhere closer to us."

Thiago has made more than 200 first-team appearances for Bayern, who are bidding to win their eighth successive Bundesliga crown.

A 10-man Bayern were thrashed 5-1 at Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday and sit fourth in the table, four points behind leaders Borussia Monchengladbach.

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