Lazio star Sergej Milinkovic-Savic cited Manchester United's Paul Pogba as an inspiration as speculation grows over a transfer to Old Trafford.

Milinkovic-Savic has played an integral role at Lazio since joining from Genk in July 2015, appearing over 200 times in Serie A.

The Serbia international has again delivered for Maurizio Sarri's side this season, providing 10 goals and 11 assists in the league, while no Serie A midfielder can match his 21 goal contributions.

Meanwhile, no Lazio player has started more Serie A games than the 27-year-old this term, while he also ranks top for tackles (67) and duels won (247).

A creative presence as well as a dominant midfielder, only Luis Alberto (64) has created more chances than Milinkovic-Savic (47), but reports in Italy suggest Lazio are ready to sell their star midfielder.

Paris Saint-Germain and United are among the favourites to sign him, with Lazio's preference not to sell to fellow domestic side Juventus, and Milinkovic-Savic has referenced two Premier League players as his idols.

Pogba, who appears set to depart United at the end of the season, came under special praise from Milinkovic-Savic, while Thiago Alcantara's creativity for Liverpool was also cited.

"Comparisons between me and Pogba? I learned a lot from him at the beginning when I arrived in Italy and he was at Juventus," he told DAZN.

"He is tall like me, has the technique and always makes a difference."

On Thiago, he added: "Against shorter players, I struggle more because I have to lower myself too. Who do I get my cue from? I always look at Thiago from Liverpool.

"I developed some body movements thanks to Futsal, a sport I practised as a child."

Milinkovic-Savic acknowledged he was pleased to continue developing after producing arguably his best season and spoke long term about harbouring Ballon d'Or ambitions.

"My best year? For a few years, the statistics say, I play a little better," he added. "If I feel undervalued? I don't think about this, when I finish the game if I have time I see it again and then I decide if I did well or not, I'm honest with myself.

"In the movements without the ball I have grown a lot over the years. Little by little I have worked and this year you can see the results.

"Five years from now? I don't think so much about the future, I look day by day and I don't think too much about things. Ballon d'Or? Of course, I'd like to win it!"

Another Manchester United rebuild could potentially benefit Newcastle United as they seek to flex their financial muscle.

The recent takeover at Newcastle will make them active players in the transfer market, while Erik ten Hag's imminent arrival in Manchester will also likely create player turnover.

Reports suggest Ten Hag's rebuild at Old Trafford does not only have consequences for outfield players, however.


TOP STORY – NEWCASTLE TO SWOOP FOR HENDERSON  

Newcastle United's interest in Dean Henderson has ramped up, according to the Mirror.

Reports suggest Magpies boss Eddie Howe, who wanted Henderson on loan in January, sees him as the ideal replacement for Martin Dubravka.

Meanwhile, the 25-year-old goalkeeper is understood to be ready to leave unless Ten Hag can guarantee him the number one spot ahead of David de Gea.

Newcastle have now guaranteed their Premier League status but have also conceded 61 goals this season, which is more than relegation-threatened Everton and Burnley.

ROUND-UP

- The Mirror is reporting Juventus will hold fresh talks with the representatives of Manchester United and France midfielder Paul Pogba.

- The Bianconeri are also interested in 24-year-old Arsenal centre-back Gabriel, according to Tuttosport.

- Newcastle are interested in Reims striker Hugo Ekitike, but Borussia Dortmund are also keen on him as a replacement for Erling Haaland, per Fabrizio Romano.

- Paris Saint-Germain boss Mauricio Pochettino is set to met with the club's president Nasser Al-Khelaifi amid speculation over his future, Marca reports.

Leonardo Bonucci will be the new captain of Juventus following the announced departure of Giorgio Chiellini, Massimiliano Allegri has confirmed.

The Bianconeri head coach was speaking ahead of Juve's final home game of the season against Lazio and said he wants to "combine all three things", referring to playing well while saying goodbye to outgoing duo Chiellini and Paulo Dybala.

Chiellini confirmed he will leave Juventus at the end of the season following their 4-2 defeat to Inter in the Coppa Italia final.

The veteran centre-back has spent 17 years with the Bianconeri, winning 20 trophies during his time in Turin.

Dybala is also exiting the Allianz Stadium at the end of the campaign and has been linked with the likes of Inter, Atletico Madrid, Arsenal and Manchester United.

"It's the last home game, you have to honour it to the fullest. And then it's Giorgio Chiellini's party and Paulo Dybala's last [game], we have to combine all three things," Allegri told reporters at a media conference on Sunday.

"They are two different things. Giorgio stops or has an experience in America, I don't know. Paulo changes team. Both will have the tribute of the fans, as I believe will [Lazio boss, Maurizio] Sarri, who returns and was the last [head coach] to win the Scudetto with Juve."

As for Juve's next skipper, Allegri added: "The new Juventus captain will be Bonucci."

The former Milan boss was also asked about Paul Pogba, who has been linked with a return to Juve once his contract at Manchester United expires next month.

"Pogba is a United player. Before talking about the transfer market, let's finish the season and then we'll take stock with the club," he said. "We don't have to evaluate not only the market but also what happened during the season at 360 degrees.

"[Do I] remember Paul? I have already forgotten, several years have already passed. I have a full memory card."

Allegri was asked to summarise the season, with Juve qualifying for the Champions League but never really challenging in the Serie A title race.

"I'm satisfied with the path and the goal, but not satisfied to have not won a trophy," he said.

"The team has done its best. Even if I always say, 'let's play with those who are here', in the long run we have paid for traumatic injuries: [Federico] Chiesa, [Weston] McKennie, Danilo, Bonucci… We have players who will certainly grow, then with the club we will improve the shortcomings of this team."

England midfielder Kalvin Phillips is reportedly on his way out of Leeds United, with Manchester United, Aston Villa and West Ham said to be the parties most interested in prying him away.

Phillips, 26, has been with Leeds since 2010, but Football Insider has reported he has no interest in remaining with the club next season, even if they remain in the Premier League.

The tough midfielder followed in the footsteps of Wilfried Zaha and Jack Butland as the only English players in the 21st century to earn a senior cap while having never played in any country's top division, and confirmed his class at Euro 2020, starting every game and earning the title of England's 2020-21 Men's Player of the Year.

 

TOP STORY – PHILLIPS GETS READY FOR EXCITING NEW CHAPTER

Believed to be valued at £60million, this will be the first time in Phillips' career that he has a chance to shape his own future and pick a situation he feels can elevate him into the conversation of the world's top midfielders.

There will be a Paul Pogba-sized hole in the centre of United's line-up, Villa have signalled their intent with their move for Philippe Coutinho, and David Moyes reportedly has visions of owning the English centre-mid pairing of Phillips and Declan Rice – or replacing the latter if they cannot retain his services through upcoming the transfer window.

Phillips missed four months of this season – from December to March – with a serious hamstring injury, restricting him to just one goal and one assist from 21 club appearances across the Premier League and Carabao Cup.

 

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Newcastle have made Everton striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin a priority target in the upcoming transfer window, according to the Telegraph.

– Fichajes is reporting Bayern Munich have entered the race for Paul Pogba, while The Mirror claims Juventus are confident about the Frenchman returning to his former Italian club.

– According to Give Me Sport, Chelsea are looking to bring in Sevilla's Jules Kounde to replace outgoing defenders Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen.

– Marca is reporting some of the world's biggest clubs, including Atletico Madrid, Juventus, Arsenal and Milan are chasing 19-year-old Racing striker Charly Alcaraz.

– The Athletic claims that if Raheem Sterling is to leave Manchester City in the upcoming transfer window, it will not be to Premier League clubs Arsenal or Tottenham, instead favouring one of Europe's top teams in Champions League contention.

Paul Pogba's departure from Manchester United at the end of this season has been long assumed.

The French midfielder's 2016 arrival for a second spell at Old Trafford came in a world-record breaking deal, but he has not delivered on the expectations that accompanied the £89million price tag.

As a result, the World Cup winner could well make a return to Juventus, the club where he first came to serious prominence.


TOP STORY – JUVENTUS LINE UP POGBA RETURN

Juventus have made a contract offer they believe puts them in the box seat to sign Paul Pogba, according to the Mirror.

Pogba is set to leave Manchester United when his contract expires at the end of this season, and Juve have reportedly offered an £8million annual salary.

With Paulo Dybala and Giorgio Chiellini's impending departures freeing up salary room, the Pogba offer is also said to include a substantial signing-on fee and bonus package to complement the base deal.

The 29-year-old Pogba has missed the Red Devils' past four Premier League games due to calf trouble, and he was absent for two months earlier in the season with a hamstring injury.

ROUND-UP

- Paris Saint-Germain would want to trim their playing squad before considering any more for United's Pogba, RMC Sport is reporting.

- United will seek to replace Pogba by signing cash-strapped Barcelona's Frenkie de Jong, according to Spanish journalist Gerard Romero.

- According to the Telegraph, Tottenham are interested in Everton's RicharlisonAnthony Gordon and Ben Godfrey.

- In order to compensate for Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger's departures, Calciomercato reports Chelsea will look to sign Napoli's Kalidou Koulibaly.

Arsenal are reportedly interested in signing Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling if he becomes available in the upcoming transfer window.

Since arriving from Liverpool in 2015, Sterling has accumulated 130 goals and 70 assists from 336 appearances in all major club competitions, and has 19 goals from 74 senior caps for England.

Despite his status as one of England's best players, Sterling has found himself on the fringes at times during the tail end of this season, playing just 28 minutes across City's two-legged Champions League tie against Real Madrid.

TOP STORY – GUNNERS TO EXPLORE STERLING DEAL

The Telegraph reports Arsenal intend to test the availability of Sterling in the next transfer window, when he will have one year remaining on his contract.

With Erling Haaland expected to arrive at Manchester City on the biggest contract in the Premier League, players such as Riyad Mahrez have been floated as potential sales to balance the books and give the club some flexibility going forward.

Selling Sterling, at 27 years old, could help City fund further moves if they do not feel he is integral to their success next season – specifically in the Champions League.

ROUND-UP

Bayern Munich are said to be planning a move for Liverpool's Sadio Mane in the next transfer window, according to Sky Germany.

– Should Arsenal fail to reach an agreement on a new deal for striker Eddie Nketiah, the Daily Mail claims West Ham are the front-runners to prise him away.

– The Athletic is reporting Paul Pogba has told Manchester City he does not intend to join them when his Manchester United contract expires at the end of this season, favouring the offer of an unnamed club instead. The report suggests the favourites to land his signature are Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain or Real Madrid.

– According to the Daily Mail, Aston Villa have made an offer of £12million to purchase Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona – significantly less than the £33million option that was included in the initial loan deal.

– The Daily Mail is also reporting that Sunderland are hoping to sign the younger brother of English Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham – Jobe Bellingham – after he became the second-youngest debutant in the history of Birmingham City.

Jamie Carragher has told Manchester City not to go "anywhere near" Paul Pogba after the Manchester United midfielder was linked with a move to the Etihad Stadium. 

Pogba is out of contract at Old Trafford at the end of the season and recent reports have suggested City could make a move to take him from their local rivals. 

However, after Pep Guardiola's team went back to the top of the Premier League following a 5-0 thrashing of Newcastle United on Sunday, Carragher stated his belief that Pogba would not suit City's style and work ethic. 

"I wouldn't go anywhere near him," the former Liverpool defender said on Sky Sports. "[City] win the league every year, get 95-100 points every year. He doesn't work hard enough, as much as the other [City] players. 

"If Pep could get it out of him, fantastic, there's no doubting his ability... but when you see the players City have, you see [Phil] Foden, Bernardo Silva, these types of players who are brilliant players and don't stop running, don't stop working from minute one to minute 90. That's what makes Manchester City what they are." 

Fellow Sky Sports pundit Jamie Redknapp had a different view, believing it would be a move that would make sense for both parties. 

"An incredible move, it'd be one that, I have to be honest, I wouldn't have seen coming," he said. "But you have to weigh it up. Free transfer, he'll have a point to prove because he's taken a lot of stick since he's been at United. 

"No matter what you say about Paul Pogba, as a free transfer – high wages, of course, but that's not a problem for Man City – you would take him in a heartbeat. 

"He adds a lot to this team, and I think he'd be hungry to come and show what he can do. He lives in the area, I think it would be an incredible move. It'd be a brave move, but I'd love to see that in the Premier League. I think it'd make sense all round." 

Manchester City have become a shock suitor for disgruntled Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba, with his contract set to expire at the end of this season.

Pogba, 29, has previously spoken about regretting his move to Old Trafford, and had been expected to leave the Premier League in the upcoming transfer window, being strongly linked with Barcelona and Real Madrid.

While the Frenchman has highlighted his desire to compete for trophies, he may not have to leave the city to get his wish, with a chance to insert himself into Manchester football folklore if he ditches the red for sky blue.

 

TOP STORY – CITY TO OFFER POGBA FOUR-YEAR DEAL WITH FREE TRANSFER

The Daily Mail is reporting City have interest in bringing in Pogba on a free transfer, while the Guardian claims the French midfielder would like to work with Pep Guardiola, and that the club are willing to offer a four-year deal.

If he makes the move, Pogba would be arguably the biggest name to ever make the switch, rivalling Carlos Tevez, but the Guardian report notes he would be taking a pay cut in doing so.

It is not known if offers coming from Spain would be more lucrative financially, but arguably no team can offer a better chance at European and domestic success than City.

In 154 Premier League appearances since his arrival in 2016, Pogba has scored 29 goals and laid on 41 assists.

 

ROUND-UP

– The Telegraph is reporting Brighton and Hove Albion manager Graham Potter is considered the favourite to replace Antonio Conte at Tottenham if he is to leave at the end of the season. Brighton are said to be seeking compensation of £10million from Spurs in the agreement.

Manchester United are interested in 19-year-old French striker Hugo Ekitike from Reims, according to the Daily Mail.

– Football London is reporting Chelsea are considering a move for Torino defender Gleison Bremer.

– According to Fabrizio Romano, Monaco will not accept less than €70m for Liverpool defender Aurelien Tchouameni.

– The Liverpool Echo is reporting Liverpool have agreed to a £7m deal for Fulham's 19-year-old Portuguese forward Marco Silva.

Matthijs de Ligt and Paul Pogba paid tribute to their renowned former agent Mino Raiola, after he died over the weekend.

The 54-year-old's death was confirmed by his family on Saturday. He had been in critical condition in a Milan hospital.

Raiola was arguably the sport's most influential player representative.

From Pavel Nedved, to Mario Balotelli, to Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Erling Haaland, Raiola represented some of the biggest names in world football, and in 2016 secured the largest transfer fee in history, at the time, for Pogba in his move back to Manchester United from Juventus.

Raiola also oversaw De Ligt's transfer from Ajax to Juve in 2019 and, in an Instagram post on Sunday, the Netherlands defender about a man he called "someone special".

"I honestly am not ready to write this message and I think I never will be," De Ligt wrote.

"It’s too early for us players, for your family but especially for you. You had so many dreams to fulfil, so many things left to do… you were always right in the end. You knew how the world worked. Nothing is impossible and you showed that to the whole world. 

"You fought for your players together with your team and that’s why you were so loved by all of them. Because as you always said: they are my sons, my family. 

"Mino, I will miss you for everything… to be my agent, but especially to be my best friend."

Pogba, who is set to be on the move at the end of the season following the expiration of his United contract, oposted a series of photos of himself and Raiola together, with the caption: "Always in my heart – thank you Mimi".

Erling Haaland has paid tribute to "the best" Mino Raiola after the renowned agent died at the age of 54.

Raiola's family announced he passed away on Saturday, two days after it was revealed the Italian was in a critical condition in San Raffaele Hospital in Milan.

One of the most recognisable agents in the world, Raiola represented the likes of Haaland, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Paul Pogba and many more.

Borussia Dortmund striker Haaland reacted to Raiola's death by posting a picture of the two of them along with a heart emoji and wrote: "The best."

On-loan Juventus striker Moise Kean also paid an emotional tribute to his agent.

He posted on Instagram: "I still can't believe, you took me out from the streets and you made me learn so many principles in life… to be honest it's not a not goodbye for us wherever you are you will always be in my heart . R.I.P BIG Boss."

Raiola's family said in a statement: "In infinite sorrow we share the passing of the most caring and amazing football agent that ever was.

"Mino fought until the end with the same strength he put on negotiation tables to defend our players. As usual, Mino made us proud and never realised it.

"Mino touched so many lives through his work and wrote a new chapter in the history of modern football. His presence will forever be missed.

"Mino's mission of making football a better place for players will continue with the same passion.

"We thank everybody for the huge amount of support received during these difficult times and ask for respect to the privacy of family and friends in this moment of grief."

Mino Raiola has died aged 54, the agent's family has confirmed.

Raiola, one of football's most recognisable agents, was the representative of a host of household names including Paul Pogba, Erling Haaland and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Raiola had been in a critical condition at a Milan hospital. Reports of his death circulated in the Italian media on Thursday, though this speculation was furiously denied by a spokesperson.

However, a statement released by Raiola's family on Saturday confirmed he had passed away.

The letter, which was released on Raiola's official Twitter account, read: "In infinite sorrow we share the passing of the most caring and amazing football agent that ever was.

"Mino fought until the end with the same strength he put on negotiation tables to defend our players. As usual, Mino made us proud and never realised it.

"Mino touched so many lives through his work and wrote a new chapter in the history of modern football. His presence will forever be missed.

"Mino's mission of making football a better place for players will continue with the same passion.

"We thank everybody for the huge amount of support received during these difficult times and ask for respect to the privacy of family and friends in this moment of grief."

On Thursday, a tweet from Raiola's account said: "Current health status for the ones wondering: p****d off, second time in four months they kill me. Seem also able to resuscitate."

It was reported in January that Raiola had undergone emergency surgery. However, a post on his Twitter account stated he had only been in hospital for checks.

Haaland, one of Raiola's highly sought-after clients who has been linked heavily with a move to Manchester City ahead of next season, was in action for Borussia Dortmund when the news was confirmed.

In response, the Norway striker's father, Alfe-Inge, tweeted: "R.I.P. The best."

Mino Raiola has died aged 54, the agent's family has confirmed.

Raiola, one of football's most recognisable agents, was the representative of a host of household names including Paul Pogba, Erling Haaland and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Raiola had been in a critical condition at a Milan hospital. Reports of his death circulated in the Italian media on Thursday, though this speculation was furiously denied by a spokesperson.

However, a statement released by Raiola's family on Saturday confirmed he had passed away.

The letter, which was released on Raiola's official Twitter account, read: "In infinite sorrow we share the passing of the most caring and amazing football agent that ever was.

"Mino fought until the end with the same strength he put on negotiation tables to defend our players. As usual, Mino made us proud and never realised it.

"Mino touched so many lives through his work and wrote a new chapter in the history of modern football. His presence will forever be missed.

"Mino's mission of making football a better place for players will continue with the same passion.

"We thank everybody for the huge amount of support received during these difficult times and ask for respect to the privacy of family and friends in this moment of grief."

Toni Kroos future at the Santiago Bernabeu has suddenly become precarious, with the relationship between the player and Real Madrid disintegrating.

The 32-year-old's dramatic drop in form has called into question whether he will see out his contract, which expires at the end of next season in 2023.

With that in mind, there are reports Real Madrid will look to both replace him and bolster their midfield in the same transfer window.

 

TOP STORY – REAL MADRID EYE POGBA AND TCHOUAMENI FOR KROOS

Real Madrid are seeking to replace Toni Kroos and strengthen their midfield, with the intent to sign both Paul Pogba and Aurelien Tchouameni, El Nacional is reporting.

The highly rated Tchouameni has long been a transfer target for Madrid, while the expiration of Pogba's contract at the end of this season makes them both attainable.

Kroos' position in Real Madrid's starting midfield has become vulnerable with the form of Eduardo Camavinga and Federico Valverde, while this transpires amid the backdrop of Luka Modric's contract extension. 

It was reported that Kroos sought to extend for another season and retire in 2024, but that possibility now seems unlikely.

ROUND-UP

- Bayern Munich are eyeing Luka Jovic as a potential replacement in the event of Robert Lewandowski's departure for Barcelona, Sport is reporting.

- Incoming Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag wants to sign outgoing Juventus attacker Paulo Dybala, according to the Corriere dello Sport.

- The Red Devils have also indicated to Napoli they are willing to pay £84million (€99.8m) for striker Victor Osimhen, La Repubblica reports.

- Arsenal have expressed interest in signing Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford, per Football Insider.

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba has said he will "hopefully" return from injury before the end of the season.

Pogba sustained a calf problem in the 4-0 defeat at Liverpool on Tuesday that is expected to keep him out for a month.

United interim manager Ralf Rangnick had said on Friday he believed Pogba would not feature again this season, adding that he "most likely won't be" staying at the club beyond this campaign.

The France star is out of contract at the end of the season, and United's final game of 2021-22 is on May 22.

"He won’t be available [at Arsenal] and most likely not for the rest of the games. It seems right now he will not renew his contract [so] it's most likely he won't be here any more next season," Rangnick said at a news conference.

However, Pogba – who has been linked with a move to Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and former club Juventus in recent weeks – posted on social media during his team's 3-1 defeat at Arsenal to explain that he is still aiming to play again before the campaign ends.

"Absolutely gutted to not be able to help the team in today's game," he wrote. "I will work even harder to come back stronger and hopefully before the end of the season. It's not over. 

"Thank you all for your support, United we would stand!"

The 29-year-old won the World Cup with France in 2018, playing a starring role in that Les Bleus team, but has struggled to play at a consistently high level for United since returning to the Premier League club in 2016.

Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick has said Paul Pogba "most likely won't be" staying at the club beyond this season.

Pogba picked up a calf injury in the 4-0 defeat at Liverpool on Tuesday that will keep the midfielder out for a month.

With the Frenchman out of contract at the end of the campaign, and United's final game of 2021-22 coming on May 22, Rangnick does not expect Pogba to feature again, and has now suggested he may have played his final game for the club.

"He won’t be available [at Arsenal] and most likely not for the rest of the games. It seems right now he will not renew his contract [so] it's most likely he won't be here any more next season," Rangnick said at a news conference on Friday.

Pogba has been linked with a move to Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and former club Juventus in recent weeks.

The 29-year-old won the World Cup with France in 2018, playing a starring role in that Les Bleus team, but has struggled to play at a consistently high level for United since coming back to the Premier League club in 2016.

 

When asked why Pogba's six years at Old Trafford have been so up and down, Rangnick replied: "It’s difficult to say.

"He’s a player who won the World Cup with France, he's such a good player that he was a regular starter for a team like France. We all know what kind of potential he has and what kind of good player he can be.

"He was quite like a few other players struggling to get his best performance sustainably on the pitch for a team like Man United.

"This has not only been the case this season or in the last couple of weeks. As far as I remember, it was also the case in earlier years."

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