Mohamed Salah will stay at Liverpool as Manchester City are the only club in world football who can compete with their title rivals, Michael Owen believes.

Salah's reported £200,000-per-week contract expires in 2023, and Liverpool have so far failed to agree new terms with their superstar winger.

No player can match Salah's Premier League goals (115) or goal involvements (158) since he signed on at Anfield in 2017, during which time the Egypt international has also played his part in Champions League, Super Cup, Club World Cup and EFL Cup triumphs.

There is therefore understandable concern among Liverpool supporters as they wait for updates on the 29-year-old's future.

However, Owen – who scored 118 of his 150 Premier League goals in Liverpool colours – suggests they need not worry.

Only a remarkable – and highly unlikely – switch to Pep Guardiola's City would make sense for Salah, according to Owen, who instead expects a resolution between the player and his current employers.

"I'd be very surprised if Mo Salah didn't sign with Liverpool," Owen told BBC Sport.

"What are the options at the moment? You are only going either sideways to Manchester City or down anywhere else, because there is no-one else as good as these two teams in the world at the moment.

"Let's give everyone time, because these things don't happen overnight.

"You are talking about one of the biggest clubs in the world and one of the biggest players in the world, and that player is about to sign the biggest contract of his life.

"I think it's entirely normal that negotiations can drag on a little bit."

Franck Kessie will not stay in Serie A, but instead will be forming part of Xavi's rebuild at Barcelona.

After a long contract saga at Milan, the Ivorian midfielder will reportedly leave the Serie A title contenders at the end of the season on a free transfer.

The 25-year-old will be the last player to leave from Milan's notorious splurge of 2017, which saw the club nearly break the €200million mark on over 10 players.


Those who have followed Franck Kessie's contract situation with Milan will be aware a €6.5million salary was his reported benchmark. Milan have been reticent to pay that figure gross, but Barcelona are said to be willing to pay it net.

Protracted contract renegotiations between Kessie and Milan have failed to come to a resolution, and while  Ismael Bennacer and Sandro Tonali become more central to Stefano Pioli's plans, letting Kessie go has seen increased scope.

According to the Guardian, Kessie will leave the Rossoneri at the end of the season on a Bosman and join Barcelona with a contract that will last until 2026.


- According to reports from La Gazzetta dello Sport, Juventus are preparing a substantial package to lure 29-year-old Mohamed Salah away from Liverpool.

- Having started on the bench with Karim Benzema injured in El Clasico, Luka Jovic is not considered as a requirement going forward at Real Madrid and will leave the club in the summer, as reported by Marca.

- Brazilian winger Raphinha has rejected Leeds United's first approach over a new contract, per UOL.

- Former Manchester United and Netherlands striker Ruud van Nistelrooy is tipped as the frontrunner to take over as coach at another former club of his, PSV, according to the Mirror.

The mayors of both Manchester and Liverpool have joined calls for Manchester City and Liverpool's FA Cup semi-final next month to be moved away from Wembley.

Pep Guardiola's Citizens and Jurgen Klopp's Reds are set to face off across the weekend of April 16/17 for a place in the final of football's oldest knockout tournament.

Yet supporters of the two Premier League and Champions League title rivals have pushed for the match to be shifted to an alternative location over logistical concerns.

Now, Andy Burnham, the mayor of Greater Manchester, and Liverpool metro mayor Steve Rotheram have issued a joint statement calling for the FA to heed such requests in the face of multiple issues.

"Over the last year, we have heard the slogan 'football without fans is nothing' many times," the pair stated.

"If this decision is left to stand, and people are either priced out of this game or unable to attend for other reasons, those words will be meaningless to many.

"We believe the most obvious solution is to move the game to a more accessible stadium and offer to work constructively with you to make that happen.

"Without quick, direct trains, many people will be left with no option but to drive, fly, make overly complex rail journeys or book overnight accommodation.

"When you factor in the rising costs of fuel, it is clear that supporters of both clubs attending this game will face excessive cost and inconvenience - and that is before any environmental impact is considered.

"There are also significant logistical and safety considerations. With thousands of fans making the long journey south, there will be huge numbers converging on the M6, which is likely to be stretched to capacity by bank holiday traffic.

"A single accident would risk the entire motorway being brought to a standstill and fans missing the kick-off."

City and Liverpool's semi-final clash will be the second meeting between the two in the space of a week, with the pair set to meet in the Premier League on April 10.

Liverpool never had any doubts that Luis Diaz would fit in immediately, with Jurgen Klopp explaining he wants the winger to play his "natural" game.

Diaz joined Liverpool in January in a big-money move from Porto, for whom he had already scored 16 goals across all competitions this season.

Everton wanted to sign the attacker in August 2021 while Tottenham were thought to be frontrunners in January, only for the Reds to pip them to the post.

Since Diaz made his debut as a substitute in the FA Cup win over Cardiff City at the start of February, the Colombia international has featured 12 times, with no other Liverpool player playing on more occasions in that time.

He has scored twice, with those goals coming in Premier League wins over Norwich City and Brighton and Hove Albion, creating 11 chances for team-mates, the fifth-most in Liverpool's squad.

Only Mohamed Salah (95) has had more touches in the opposition box than Diaz (69), whose energetic and aggressive pressing has seen him settle in quickly to Klopp's set-up.

Of Liverpool attackers, just Roberto Firmino (12) has attempted more tackles than Diaz's eight, with the winger having a 100 per cent success rate. Indeed, his 113 duels is also a team-high, with only Fabinho having won more (58 compared to 51).

Klopp and his staff had no concerns over Diaz's ability, but the Liverpool manager has stressed the importance of allowing the 25-year-old to play his own game.

"Every coach would say the same about a January signing. You do it, but if you could, you would do it in the summer," he told Sky Sports.

"There is a reason why you sign a player. The reason is the quality that he has. The reason is the way that he is playing the game.

"With Luis, where it has been really special is that when we saw him we knew that he would fit in immediately. That is really difficult usually but because he did not have to change, that is why we have a really confident boy here.

"He was in a really good moment with Porto, playing good for Colombia, and so he came here full of confidence. But what we tried to make sure is that he does not lose that because of the playbook as we tell him that he has to do this and he has to do that.

"We want him to be natural. It was clear from the first moment that we saw him that he would be a player who could play immediately, on a specific level, if he could deal with it mentally."

It has been a superb start to life at Anfield for Diaz, who has already helped seal an EFL Cup triumph.

"Nothing has happened yet," warned Klopp. "Yes, the start has been really good. But he is a long-term project for us and we are a long-term project for him.

"There is loads more to come."

The pressure mounted on Paris Saint-Germain again after another defeat in Ligue 1 this weekend.

The Parisians are 12 points clear at the top but have lost four of their past six games.

Lionel Messi has only netted twice in Ligue 1 since his move from Barcelona, while fellow free signing Sergio Ramos has also only played five times.



Marca reports that PSG would block any potential return to Barcelona or Real Madrid for either Messi or Ramos respectively.

The Ligue 1 giants signed both players last year from those respective clubs, yet there has been reports claiming they may want to return to Spain.

Ramos has struggled with injury while Messi has not been able to discover his best goalscoring form, but PSG are eager to hold on to them.

Messi joined on a two-year deal last August, while Ramos also penned a two-year deal last July.



- Bayern Munich have made an opening bid for Ajax's Ryan Gravenberch according to Fabrizio Romano. The fee is approximately €25million but Ajax want more.

- Chelsea, Liverpool, PSG and Madrid are all circling for Monaco's Aurelien Tchouameni but the Ligue 1 club will not accept less than €50m for him claims Foot Mercato.

- Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti wants to sign Inter midfielder Nicolo Barella according to El Nacional. Barella's arrival could force Toni Kroos out too.

- Aston Villa are prepared to pay £60m for Leeds United midfielder Kalvin Phillips claims The Times.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp compared Sunday's FA Cup quarter-final win against Nottingham Forest to a Champions League atmosphere.

It was a hard-fought 1-0 victory for Klopp's men, the sides separated only by Diogo Jota's 78th-minute winner after getting on the end of Kostas Tsimikas' cross.

Nottingham Forest had a penalty shout turned down after a VAR review with five minutes remaining, while Ryan Yates had a great chance with a header as the 90 minutes expired, but it was straight at Alisson.

Klopp was full of praise for his Championship opponents, saying they contributed to the big-match feel.

"Proper cup match, have to say," he told ITV.

"You mentioned before, a European night in Nottingham, that’s what it was pretty much!

"I know they don’t get anything for it, but a massive compliment to Steve Cooper and his team, they played a really good game.

"Just that they fought, closed the gaps. We could have and should have played better, but they made it really difficult. 

"First half we should have scored the sitter, Bobby [Roberto Firmino], that’s really unlike him that he doesn’t square the ball, Diogo was in a good position.

"The game stayed open, the atmosphere was a massive boost for them. We came through, and I’m really happy with it.

"[The goal] was not a massive chance, a difficult one to get there and his leg in front of the defender.

"An outstanding goal and he is a striker – a proper striker – in those sorts of situations and a desire to put the body in, absolutely great."

Diogo Jota's late strike put Liverpool into the semi-finals of the FA Cup as Nottingham Forest were beaten 1-0 at the City Ground.

The Reds dominated much of the tie against the Championship promotion-chasers, but had to wait until Jota's goal after 78 minutes to take the lead.

Jota was ruled to be marginally onside following a VAR check, so Jurgen Klopp's side will face Premier League leaders Manchester City in a mouth-watering clash for a place in the final at Wembley on April 16 or 17.

The Merseyside club remain in the hunt for an unprecedented quadruple after ending Forest's excellent run to the last eight, with Ryan Yates denied a late penalty.

Kostas Tsimikas flashed a long-range strike just over the crossbar and Fabinho dragged a shot wide as Liverpool applied early pressure.

Roberto Firmino should have put the Reds in front when a poor pass from Jack Colback put him one-on-one with Ethan Horvath, but the Forest goalkeeper stood tall to prevent the Brazil striker from dinking the ball over him and into the net.

Joe Gomez drilled a shot high over the crossbar when the ball fell invitingly for him in the penalty area as Liverpool continued to strive for a breakthrough without reward in the first half.

Jota called Horvath into action again early in the second half and Klopp made four changes after the hour mark, bringing on Luis Diaz, Jordan Henderson, Takumi Minamino and Thiago Alcantara.

Resolute Forest continued to stand firm and Philip Zinckernagel should have put them in front when he shot just wide unmarked from close range after Brennan Johnson picked him out in the 76th minute.

Jota made him pay soon after, converting a Tsimikas cross from close range with his right foot to end Forest's resistance. 

Yates went down in the closing stages when he tried to round Alisson, but the VAR agreed with referee Craig Pawson's decision not to point to the spot and the midfielder then headed straight at the Brazil keeper before Cafu drilled over the bar as Liverpool held on to advance.

Manchester City will meet Liverpool in the FA Cup semi-finals if Jurgen Klopp's Reds see off Nottingham Forest in their quarter-final tie, while Chelsea will face Crystal Palace.

City's dominant 4-1 win against Southampton means Pep Guardiola's team have reached the competition's final four in four consecutive seasons, last lifting the trophy with a 6-0 win over Watford in 2019.

Liverpool, meanwhile, have lost on penalties in each of their last two Wembley meetings with City, doing so in the 2016 EFL Cup final and the 2019 Community Shield, with both matches finishing 1-1 after extra time.

After thrashing the Saints on Sunday, Guardiola's Premier League leaders have now hit four or more goals in 80 different games under his management, with Liverpool doing so on 58 occasions during that time, the second highest tally amongst English sides.

Chelsea have finished as FA Cup runners-up in three of the last five seasons, and after advancing to the last four with a routine 2-0 victory over Middlesbrough on Saturday, will be looking to record a third consecutive win over Patrick Viera's Eagles this season.

Palace's 4-0 quarter-final victory over Everton, meanwhile, means they have won four consecutive games in the competition for the first time since 2016, when they lost the final to Manchester United.

Should Thomas Tuchel's Chelsea progress from that tie, they could face either a repeat of last season's Champions League final, in which they defeated Man City 1-0 via a Kai Havertz goal.

Nottingham Forest will leave 97 seats empty when they face Liverpool in the FA Cup on Sunday in tribute to the fans who died as a result of the Hillsborough disaster.

It was Forest who were Liverpool's opponents in the FA Cup semi-final at the home of Sheffield Wednesday in April 1989.

Those who lost their lives after a crush on the over-crowded Leppings Lane terrace were supporting Liverpool that day.

It remains a tragedy that touches both clubs, and the victims will be remembered when the sides meet for the first time in 23 years.

Two-time European Cup winners Forest have been outside the top flight of English football since 1999, meaning the once great rivalry that existed between them and Liverpool has gone cold, but the chance to reach a cup semi-final means the City Ground is a sell-out.

Only one small section will remain unoccupied.

Forest said in an announcement on Twitter: "Never forgotten. 97 seats will be left vacant at tomorrow's match in honour of those who lost their lives at our FA Cup semi-final in 1989. We look forward to welcoming Liverpool FC to the City Ground."

Seats next to a scoreboard in the stadium will be covered by draping bearing the message '97 NEVER FORGOTTEN 15.4.89'.

The disaster saw 95 fans die on the day or within days of the semi-final, which was abandoned shortly after kick-off. A 96th victim, Tony Bland, died in 1993, and the 97th to die as a result, Andrew Devine, passed away last year.

All 97 have since been ruled to have been unlawfully killed. A 1991 inquest verdict of accidental death was overturned at the high court in 2012.

Jurgen Klopp has said the one thing he wanted Liverpool to avoid in Friday's Champions League draw was a tie against another Premier League team.

The Reds' manager will have been relieved to see them drawn against Portuguese side Benfica for the quarter-finals of Europe's premier competition.

Fellow English representatives, Chelsea and Manchester City, were drawn against Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid respectively, while Villarreal will play Bayern Munich.

Should Liverpool get past Benfica, they will face the winner of that latter tie in the semi-finals.

Speaking to the club's official website, Klopp said it would be a "mistake" to underestimate Benfica, but did say he hoped to avoid more familiar opposition.

"The only thing I didn’t want to have – I would have taken everybody – but the only thing I didn't want was an English team," he said. "We had that in the past and we went through [2018 v Man City], we played a final against an English team [2019 v Tottenham], it’s absolutely fine, in the final anyway, you take whoever you get.

"But actually I was just happy it's not an English club, not only because of the quality but because of the competition as well, we play them often enough during a season and it's good if you play somebody else in the European competitions."

Klopp added that he is "really looking forward" to the tie, with Benfica the only possible opponent in the draw he is yet to face as Liverpool manager. The Lisbon club knocked out Ajax in the round of 16 after a Darwin Nunez goal in Amsterdam sealed a 3-2 aggregate win.

"Really looking forward to it," Klopp added. "It's a quarter-final so a tough one. Benfica did obviously really well against Ajax and that's the situation. I know people will say we are the favourites and stuff like this, but that's already the first mistake you could make. We are too long in the business now to make these kinds of mistakes.

"I'm just really looking forward to it. I respect a lot what they are doing there, it's a massive club. I don't think I ever played there, to be 100 per cent honest. Lisbon, a great city.

"On top of that – I spent my last week off on holiday [before taking the Liverpool job], I got the call from [club director] Mike Gordon in Lisbon. So that's a nice memory as well. I was sitting in an outside coffee bar, I got the call and we made the decision actually in Lisbon."

Real Madrid will face holders Chelsea in the Champions League quarter-finals, while Manchester City tackle Atletico Madrid.

The clash of 13-time winners Madrid and two-time champions Chelsea will be a repeat of last season's semi-final, which the English side won 3-1 on aggregate, and will mean Los Blancos boss Carlo Ancelotti goes up against his former team.

Madrid's Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois could also face their old club, who are in a state of crisis after owner Roman Abramovich was hit with UK government sanctions.

The winners of that standout tie will progress to a semi-final against City or Atletico, who meet in a tantalising clash that will see coaches Pep Guardiola and Diego Simeone at the heart of the narrative.

Atletico beat Manchester United at the last-16 stage and will return to the north-west of England in pursuit of another major scalp.

Villarreal, who sprung a surprise by knocking out Juventus, have been rewarded with a clash against Bayern Munich, who were 8-2 aggregate winners over Salzburg.

Benfica will face Jurgen Klopp's in-form Liverpool. The Reds are six-time European champions but lost to the Portuguese giants at the last-16 stage in the 2005-06 season, their last meeting in the Champions League.

The two-leg quarter-final ties will be played April 5-6 and April 12-13, with the semi-finals scheduled for April 26-27 and May 3-4.

The Stade de France will stage the final on May 28, after St Petersburg was stripped of the match due to Russian military action in Ukraine.

Quarter-final draw

Chelsea v Real Madrid

Manchester City v Atletico Madrid

Villarreal v Bayern Munich

Benfica v Liverpool

Semi-final draw

Manchester City/Atletico Madrid v Chelsea/Real Madrid

Benfica/Liverpool v Villarreal/Bayern Munich

Trent Alexander-Arnold will miss Liverpool's FA Cup tie against Nottingham Forest and is unavailable for England duty due to a hamstring injury, Jurgen Klopp has confirmed.

The full-back, who was named in Gareth Southgate's latest England squad on Thursday, will be forced to miss the Three Lions' March international friendlies against Switzerland the Ivory Coast.

The Reds travel to the City Ground on Sunday in pursuit of a semi-final place, a few weeks on from claiming the EFL Cup against Chelsea at Wembley.

Victory would take them one step closer to a potential quadruple, with Klopp's side still in contention for both the Premier League and Champions League too.

But they will have to do so this weekend without Alexander-Arnold, while Mohamed Salah could be a doubt for the visitors too.

"Trent is out with a hamstring, so will be out for England too," Klopp told his pre-match news conference. "[It's] not good news, [but] we will see how long it takes. Mo felt his foot a little bit after the game too."

Asked on how his side would cope without Alexander-Arnold, Klopp added: "We will see. To replace him is difficult but possible.

"We have [James] Milner, [Joe] Gomez, these kind of things. Trent is so influential but Milner has done incredibly well in the past. We'll see how [he] is for Sunday."

Liverpool are set to play their first FA Cup quarter-final under Klopp, with the trophy one of the few gaps on his resume since he arrived on Merseyside.

If he is able to guide them past Forest - themselves in the last eight for the first time since the 1995-96 campaign - then the Reds will move a step closer to further silverware this season.

Cristiano Ronaldo has been heavily linked with an early exit from Manchester United this season.

The Red Devils are out of the Premier League title race and struggling to make the top four.

There is said to be tension surrounding Ronaldo due to Ralf Rangnick's appointment as interim manager.


Ronaldo will stay with United next season with interim manager Rangnick set to depart, reports AS.

The 37-year-old forward has committed to United, whom he joined in August on a two-year deal with the option for a third season, as he is confident they will show their ambition by making a major appointment with their new permanent manager.

United were eliminated from the Champions League this week by Atletico Madrid and are struggling to reach next season's edition, sitting fifth in the Premier League.


- Jesse Lingard has been offered to Italian clubs Milan and Roma as he prepares to leave United as a free agent, reports Nicolo Schira. West Ham  and Newcastle United are also interested in the 29-year-old England international.

- Benfica have slapped a £67million price tag on striker  Darwin Nunez , who is being pursued by Manchester United , Arsenal , Liverpool and Newcastle ,   according to The Mirror.

- Foot Mercato reports  Arsenal will enter the race to sign Real Madrid winger  Eden Hazard , with Chelsea previously linked to their former player.

- Fichajes claims  Atletico Madrid are considering a move for Athletic Bilbao head coach Marcelino should Diego Simeone opt to leave the Spanish champions.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp launched a passionate defence of Trent Alexander-Arnold, telling his critics he will "knock them down".

Goals from Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino secured the Reds a 2-0 win over Arsenal on Wednesday, a result that moved the Reds to within a point of Manchester City at the summit in a tightly contested Premier League title race.

But before the visitors took hold of the game at Emirates Stadium, Alexander-Arnold found himself on the wrong end of several smart Arsenal breaks spearheaded by Gabriel Martinelli.

Klopp, however, remained highly defensive of the right-back's efforts, hailing his capabilities and insisting any player can have difficulties defending against a player with the talents of Martinelli.

"If anyone says Trent can't defend, they should come to me and I'll knock them down," he told Sky Sports. "I cannot hear that anymore, I don't know what the boy has to do.

"Both teams had spells of possession where the other team was patient, closing the centre, didn't want to step out but we had to.

"In the moment where we defended forward like in the second half, the wingers defended the width. apart from the diagonal balls to Martinelli, which Trent defended incredibly.

"Martinelli is such a talented boy, it's really tricky [to defend against him]."

Alexander-Arnold has often figured as a critical flashpoint for pundits and fans away from Merseyside over the past few years, arguably due to the heavy competition for his spot in the England national team setup.

Having been dropped at the start of 2021 by Gareth Southgate, he earned a recall for Euro 2020, only to miss out on the tournament through injury.

Alexander-Arnold is expected to be included when Southgate names his latest squad on Thursday, ahead of the Three Lions' friendlies with Switzerland and the Ivory Coast.

Paris Saint-Germain have reportedly opened talks with Tottenham head coach Antonio Conte, who has a clause to leave Spurs at the end of the season.

Conte's contract with the North London club runs until the end of the 2022-23 season, after replacing Nuno Espirito Santo in November last year.

However, while the specific terms of that contract are unclear, it reportedly allows for a departure pending certain circumstances. 


According to Calciomercato, Paris Saint-Germain are set to part ways with Mauricio Pochettino and are already in the process of looking for his replacement.

Their primary target appears to be Antonio Conte  - who is reportedly tempted by the contract - which is forcing Tottenham into action, to persuade him to see out his deal. 

The 52-year-old is not the only candidate according to the report, with Massimiliano Allegri and Zinedine Zidane also among the potential hires.

Tottenham accounted for Brighton and Hove Albion on Wednesday, but earlier last week, Conte said he would discuss his future with Spurs at the end of the season. 


- Per reports from Kicker, Robert Lewandowski is yet to extend his contract at Bayern Munich, despite Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic's public claims the club wants him to stay. With the Polish striker entering the final 18 months of his current deal, agent Pini Zahavi is looking to secure his future at Sabenerstrasse.

- According to Globo, Edinson Cavani's potential move to Botafogo has fallen through due to the Uruguayan striker's wage demands. Battling injury, Cavani's playing time at Manchester United has failed to see continuity under Ralf Rangnick.

- Nicolo Schira is reporting Milan are getting closer to signing Divock Origi from Liverpool, in order to bolster their stocks up front. Origi's representatives and Milan have met and are looking to progress discussions.

- The Mirror is reporting Lord Sebastian Coe is joining a consortium for the potential takeover of Chelsea, after Roman Abramovich's assets were frozen by the United Kingdom government.

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