Real Sociedad claimed a place in the Champions League despite a 2-1 defeat at Atletico Madrid in LaLiga on Sunday.

Fifth-placed Villarreal’s loss at Rayo Vallecano by the same scoreline meant Sociedad could not be caught in fourth spot.

Antoine Griezmann and Nahuel Molina were on target for Atletico at the Civitas Metropolitano with Alexander Sorloth hitting a late reply for the visitors.

Atletico’s victory took them back within a point of second-placed city rivals Real Madrid.

Raul de Tomas and Isi Palazon struck either side of the hour-mark for Rayo Vallecano against Villarreal at the Vallecas Stadium. Giovani Lo Celso gave the Yellow Submarine hope seven minutes from time but it was not enough.

At the other end of the table, Espanyol were relegated after conceding a late equaliser to draw 2-2 at Valencia.

Samuel Lino struck three minutes into added time to seal Espanyol’s fate after they had replied to Diego Lopez’s opener with goals from Cesar Montes and Martin Braithwaite.

Valladolid remain in the bottom three with a game remaining after drawing 0-0 with another troubled side, Almeria, who are just a point above them.

Cadiz boosted their survival hopes with a 1-0 win over fellow strugglers Celta Vigo and Getafe did likewise as they saw off Osasuna 2-1.

Champions Barcelona, meanwhile, extended their unassailable lead at the top of the table to 11 points with a 3-0 win over 10-man Mallorca at the Nou Camp.

Ansu Fati opened the scoring in the first minute before doubling the lead after the dismissal of Mallorca’s Amath Diedhiou. Gavi wrapped up the win 20 minutes from time.

Sergej Milinkovic-Savic struck an 89th-minute winner as Lazio moved back into second place in Serie A with a 3-2 victory over relegated Cremonese.

It was the Serbian’s second of the game at the Stadio Olimpico with Elseid Hysaj also on target for the Rome side.

Cremonese had hit back from 2-0 down through Pablo Galdames and a Manuel Lazzari own goal.

Hellas Verona remain in the bottom three after conceding a stoppage-time equaliser to draw 1-1 with Empoli.

The hosts had led at the Marcantonio Bentegodi Stadium through Adolfo Gaich but Giangiacomo Magnani turned into his own net in the sixth minute of time added on.

Their survival fight will still go to the final day, however, with the result having pulled them level on points with Spezia.

Real Sociedad secured Champions League qualification despite goals from Antoine Griezmann and Nahuel Molina condemning them to a 2-1 defeat at Atletico Madrid on Sunday.

La Real headed to the Civitas Metropolitano knowing three points would seal a top-four LaLiga finish for the first time since the 2012-13 season.

But a superb first-half strike from Griezmann would put Diego Simeone's already-qualified Atletico in front, cutting onto his left foot before lashing into the far corner for his 15th league goal of the season.

Molina would make the points safe for third-placed Atletico, latching onto Griezmann's neat throughball before smashing a deflected effort past Alex Remiro and into the net.

Alexander Sorloth would pull one back late on, Brais Mendez producing a brilliant assist to set the striker in on goal before the Norway international fired home.

But time would run out on their pursuit of an equaliser as the visitors fell to a first loss in eight league matches.

La Real would be able to celebrate at full time, however, as Villarreal's 2-1 loss away at Rayo Vallecano ensured Imanol Alguacil's team will be playing Champions League football next season.

Atletico can still finish second. They are a point behind city rivals Real Madrid going into the final matchday of the season next weekend.

Barcelona's LaLiga title celebrations fell flat at Camp Nou as they suffered a 2-1 defeat to Real Sociedad on Saturday.

Xavi's side claimed the top-flight crown with a 4-2 win over Espanyol last time out, with the team celebrating on the pitch afterwards – much to the chagrin of their rivals' fans.

Yet the Blaugrana were unable to mark their first league title since 2019 with a victory on their return home, with Mikel Merino's early strike and Alexander Sorloth's breakaway finish claiming the points for La Real.

Robert Lewandowski's late header sparked hope for Barca, but their visitors clung on for a first away win at Camp Nou since May 1991, putting Imanol Alguacil's side in the box seat for Champions League football with three games remaining.

La Real caught their hosts cold on the counter inside five minutes, with Merino tucking home an early finish.

Barca seemed set to equalise when Ousmane Dembele met Lewandowski's delivery, but Alex Remiro made a fantastic save, before the Poland international dragged wide from close range.

The Blaugrana meanwhile lived a charmed life at the other end, as Ander Barrenetxea squandered two golden opportunities either side of Marc-Andre ter Stegen denying Mohamed Ali-Cho.

Sorloth subsequently headed wide from six yards out, but the Norway international made no mistake afterwards when he finished a superb counter-attack.

Lewandowski's fine header set up a grandstand finish late on but La Real held firm through five minutes of added time to move five points clear of fifth-place Villarreal with a worthy win.

A 10-man Real Madrid faltered once again in the LaLiga title race as Takefusa Kubo haunted his former club after scoring in a 2-0 win for Real Sociedad.

Barcelona snatched a 1-0 victory over Osasuna prior to Tuesday's kick-off at Reale Arena, where Madrid offered little without the suspended Vinicius Junior or the rested Karim Benzema.

Kubo – who joined La Real from Los Blancos last July – scored just past half-time and, after Dani Carvajal received his marching orders for two cautions, Ander Barrenetxea made sure of victory for the hosts.

Next week's Champions League semi-final clash at Manchester City appears the priority for Madrid now over LaLiga, where they trail leaders Barca by 14 points with five games to play.

Alex Remiro made an expert stop to deny Eder Militao with a sixth-minute header bound for the top-right corner before La Real steadied their early nerves.

Martin Zubimendi turned Alexander Sorloth's near-post flick-on onto the crossbar from point-blank range, while Thibaut Courtois repelled a glorious David Silva chance with his feet.

Mikel Oyarzabal saw a penalty appeal for a foul by Militao rejected as Sociedad continued in the ascendancy, albeit without a first-half reward arriving.

Yet their dominance told immediately after the interval when Kubo capitalised on a stray Militao pass back to Courtois and poked into an empty net.

Matters worsened for Madrid as Carvajal was sent off for a second needless lunge on Aihen Munoz, before Barrenetxea sealed the deal in the 85th minute when he smashed a low finish into the bottom-left corner.

What does it mean? Immaculate Imanol plan has Madrid reeling…again

La Real coach Imanol Alguacil has taken more points off Madrid in LaLiga than any other manager in the competition's history, moving past Paco Lopez (10) after making it 12 in 10 games (W3 D3 L4).

While the visitors were without star winger Vinicius, Los Blancos had won all three fixtures this season when he had not featured and avoided conceding in those outings.

Then there was Carlo Ancelotti's decision to rest Benzema, displaying the Italian's obvious priority – Alguacil may have Madrid's number but Los Blancos' calling card remains firmly with the Champions League.

King Kubo

Loan spells at Mallorca, Villarreal and Getafe marked an unsuccessful spell in Kubo's Madrid career, with Los Blancos showing little interest in keeping him.

But the La Real forward made his former side pay here, scoring his eighth goal in 30 LaLiga games for Alguacil's side – two more than in his previous four seasons combined (six goals in 94 outings).

More needed from Militao

Miliato went close in the opening stages to scoring his sixth headed goal this season in Europe's top-five leagues – no player can match his current mark of five either.

Yet the Brazil centre-back's momentary lapse in concentration in the second period, crumbling under the pressure of Sorloth before rolling in Kubo, will be what this performance is remembered for.

What's next?

Madrid face Osasuna in the Copa del Rey final on Saturday, a week before La Real host Girona in LaLiga.

Paris Saint-Germain are reportedly prepared to submit a €150million bid for star Napoli striker Victor Osimhen in the upcoming transfer window.

Osimhen, 24, is in his third season with Napoli after arriving in a club-record €70m move from Lille, and this time around he has put together one of the best goalscoring campaigns in Europe.

With 21 goals in 24 Serie A appearances, and five goals in six Champions League outings, the Nigeria international has been unstoppable.

Now, the world's best clubs have taken notice.
 

TOP STORY – PSG PREPARED TO MEET MASSIVE ASKING PRICE

While there is also said to be strong interest in Osimhen coming from the deep pockets of Chelsea, Paris Saint-Germain are trying to wrap things up early with a serious bid.

Football Insider is reporting the French giants are ready to meet Napoli's enormous €150m asking price, with the hope they can blow Chelsea out of the water as they consider a £100m (€112m) bid of their own.

Osimhen's contract ties him to the club for two more seasons after this one, but with his value at an all-time high, and with Napoli being able to offer the chance at league titles and deep Champions League runs, the Serie A leaders can demand a substantial windfall.


ROUND-UP

– According to GiveMeSport, Manchester United view Valencia's 22-year-old goalkeeper Giorgi Mamardashvili – who is priced around £45m (€50m) – as a potential long-term replacement for David de Gea.

United are also showing interest in 19-year-old Benfica centre-back Antonio Silva, although they face competition from Paris Saint-Germain, Napoli, Real Madrid, Juventus and Liverpool, per Ekrem Konur.

– Football Insider is reporting Liverpool and Tottenham are the two teams 23-year-old Eintracht Frankfurt centre-back Evan Ndicka will choose between when his contract expires in a few months.

– According to the Daily Mail, 31-year-old Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino will join Barcelona on a free transfer at the end of the season.

Arsenal sent scouts to Spain to get a closer look at the Real Sociedad duo of 24-year-old midfielder Martin Zubimendi and 26-year-old defender Robin Le Normand, per the Daily Mail.

Chelsea seem to have resigned themselves to making a major loss on Romelu Lukaku, who has only netted five times on loan at Inter this term.

According to a Football Insider report, the Blues are ready to move him on in at the end of the season, with Inter unlikely to try to extend his stay in Milan.

Chelsea spent £97.5milion to bring Lukaku back to Stamford Bridge in August 2021, but they are unlikely to get anywhere near that now.

TOP STORY – GERMAN CHAMPIONS LINE UP SHOCK LUKAKU MOVE

Bayern Munich are lining up a shock move for Chelsea's Romelu Lukaku to bolster their attacking options, claims Fichajes.

The report claims Bayern boss Julian Nagelsmann is an admirer of the Belgium striker, who he believes is one of the world's best forwards if injury free.

Bayern will not commence negotiations with Chelsea until the end of the season. The German champions had been linked with Harry Kane as they look for someone to replace Robert Lewandowski, who left for Barcelona last year.

Calciomercato reports that Chelsea may try to land a deal with Roma with a swap deal involving Tammy Abraham.

 

ROUND-UP

– 90min claims Manchester City have reignited their interest in signing 19-year-old Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Florian Wirtz following a long-term knee injury which forced him to miss the 2022 World Cup. Fabrizio Romano claims Real Madrid will compete for the German's services too.

Tottenham are interested in Manchester United goalkeeper Dean Henderson, reports ESPN. Henderson is currently on loan at Nottingham Forest from United, who could use Spurs' interest as leverage in a deal for Harry Kane, per the report

– Leeds United forward Wilfried Gnonto is drawing interest from Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City, according to Gazzetta dello Sport, while 90min claims Juventus and Napoli are among a list of Italian clubs tracking him too.

– Fabrizio Romano claims Barcelona on the cusp of agreeing to a deal with Athletic Bilbao centre-back Inigo Martinez to join the Blaugrana on a free transfer in the off-season.

– Paris Saint-Germain are prepared to let Portuguese midfielder Renato Sanches exit amid interest from Milan along with Premier League clubs Aston Villa, Liverpool, Newcastle United, Tottenham and Wolves, reports 90min.

– Football London reports Arsenal are ready to ramp up their interest in Real Sociedad midfielder Martin Zubimendi with a bid to come in the coming months, although he has a €60m release clause in his contract.

Jose Mourinho took aim at Serie A rivals Juventus and Lazio after seeing his Roma side progress to the Europa League quarter-finals on Thursday.

Roma earned a 0-0 draw at Real Sociedad in the second leg of their last-16 tie, winning 2-0 on aggregate.

Speaking to Sky Sport Italia after the game, Mourinho could not resist indirectly referring to Juventus, who also went through against Freiburg, claiming they should not have been allowed to move into the Europa League after being eliminated from the Champions League group stage.

He did directly mention Lazio though, who were beaten 2-1 on Thursday by AZ Alkmaar, losing 4-2 on aggregate to crash out of the Europa Conference League.

"I don't care about the draw, there are teams there that in my opinion shouldn't be there, because whoever is eliminated in a competition has to go home," he said. "If a team that has been eliminated from the Champions League wins, it doesn't mean anything to me because we've been here from the beginning. 

"Lazio? They won't have a third competition to play in."

Roma had to soak up pressure against La Real, facing 19 shots to three and only having 24 per cent possession.

"After the 2-0 first leg [win], the home team risks everything and does everything possible," Mourinho said. "They did everything with the support from the stadium, but the boys today had everything, the ambition to score in the first 15-20 minutes where we dominated and pressed, then we controlled the counter-attack well.

"We never stopped looking for the goal, even when [Tammy] Abraham and [Stephan] El Shaarawy came on, congratulations to the boys, it's thanks to them. It's a very strong Europa League, we have eliminated two quality opponents and we are in the quarter-finals with many top-level teams."

Mourinho has enjoyed plenty of success in Europe, winning two Champions League, two UEFA Cup/Europa Leagues and last year's inaugural Europa Conference League.

Roma will enter Friday's last-eight draw along with Juventus, Manchester United, Feyenoord, Sporting CP, Sevilla, Bayer Leverkusen and Union Saint-Gilloise.

"We are not the strongest team in the world but we are a group that knows how to stay together," he added.

Roma may have won 2-0 over Real Sociedad in their Europa League last-16 first leg but head coach Jose Mourinho refused to call it a good result.

Goals from Stephan Al Shaarawy and substitute Marash Kumbulla secured the home victory which gives the Giallorossi a significant advantage ahead of the return leg in San Sebastian.

Despite that, Mourinho was not satisfied, urging caution with a quarter-final spot at stake.

"This 2-0 is only good if we don't lose by three in the second leg," Mourinho told Sky Sport Italia. "I will never say it's a good result after the first leg."

Mourinho acknowledged Roma have a complicated schedule around the second leg on Thursday 16 March, with a Derby della Capitale against Lazio three days later.

"Now we have a dangerous week," the Portuguese said. "After the return with Real Sociedad we play against Lazio, even if for me playing with them is like playing with Milan or Juve, but in this city it is not like that."

Roma actually had only 40 per cent possession against Sociedad, yet generated three shots on target compared to the Spanish side's one.

Despite not declaring it a good result, Mourinho said his side controlled the game and deserved the win.

"I liked the organisation, the effort and the empathy on the pitch," Mourinho said.

"We all helped each other. It’s hard to play against teams who field a midfield diamond. We faced it against Empoli and RB Salzburg, but it's difficult.

"We needed a strong mentality because when you don't have the ball for a long time, mentality is crucial. We controlled the match despite having less possession."

Roma may have won 2-0 over Real Sociedad in their Europa League last-16 first leg but head coach Jose Mourinho refused to call it a good result.

Goals from Stephan Al Shaarawy and substitute Marash Kumbulla secured the home victory which gives the Giallorossi a significant advantage ahead of the return leg in San Sebastian.

Despite that, Mourinho was not satisfied, urging caution with a quarter-final spot at stake.

"This 2-0 is only good if we don't lose by three in the second leg," Mourinho told Sky Sport Italia. "I will never say it's a good result after the first leg."

Mourinho acknowledged Roma have a complicated schedule around the second leg on Thursday 16 March, with a Derby della Capitale against Lazio three days later.

"Now we have a dangerous week," the Portuguese said. "After the return with Real Sociedad we play against Lazio, even if for me playing with them is like playing with Milan or Juve, but in this city it is not like that."

Roma actually had only 40 per cent possession against Sociedad, yet generated three shots on target compared to the Spanish side's one.

Despite not declaring it a good result, Mourinho said his side controlled the game and deserved the win.

"I liked the organisation, the effort and the empathy on the pitch," Mourinho said.

"We all helped each other. It’s hard to play against teams who field a midfield diamond. We faced it against Empoli and RB Salzburg, but it's difficult.

"We needed a strong mentality because when you don't have the ball for a long time, mentality is crucial. We controlled the match despite having less possession."

Jose Mourinho has conceded it is difficult to find Real Sociedad's weaknesses as Roma prepare for the first leg of their last-16 tie in the "super quality" Europa League.

Roma coach Mourinho has won the Europa League twice with Porto and Manchester United and guided the Giallorossi to the Conference League title last season. 

The Serie A side are enjoying another good season, sitting fourth in the league and advancing past Salzburg in the previous round in Europe.

Now, Roma face La Real for the first time in UEFA competition, with the first leg taking place at Rome's Stadio Olimpico. 

Ahead of the match, Mourinho said of Roma's opponents: "They are an excellent team, and it is difficult to find their weaknesses. They have a very good coach, and the team is doing very well.

"They are organised both defensively and offensively, with technically very good players.

"They are fourth [in LaLiga] behind the three giants who are always there; it's really a quality team, and it can't be said that we were lucky in the draw."

Roma and La Real are joined in the last 16 by United, Arsenal and Juventus among others.

Mourinho added: "This year the Europa League is super quality, a difficult match, but they look at us with the same respect as we look at them."

The LaLiga side boast some quality players in their ranks, including David Silva, sought-after midfielder Martin Zubimendi and talented winger Mikel Oyarzabal.

Asked about Oyarzabal, Mourinho was keen to focus more on the collective.

"He's very good, but Real Sociedad is much more than him," Mourinho said. "Even from an individual point of view, they also have other players of the highest level.

"But the most important thing is how they play as a team, they are very organised."

 

 

 

 

 

Manchester United have been drawn to face Real Betis in the Europa League's round of 16, while Arsenal will battle Sporting CP for a quarter-final spot.

United came from behind to clinch a 2-1 victory over Barcelona at Old Trafford on Thursday, and their reward for a 4-3 aggregate triumph over the Blaugrana is a tie against another Spanish opponent.

Having not lifted any silverware since winning this competition in 2017, United are in the hunt for four trophies this term, though Erik ten Hag's men will be tested by a side sat fifth in LaLiga.

Betis boss Manuel Pellegrini has faced United on four previous occasions in European competitions, with all four games finishing goalless during his time with Villarreal (in the 2005-06 and 2008-09 Champions League group stages).

Premier League leaders Arsenal will face Sporting after Ruben Amorim's team thrashed Midtjylland 5-1 on aggregate in the knockout round play-offs.

Sporting have progressed from each of their previous six ties against English teams in the knockout stages of the UEFA Cup/Europa League, with all six coming against different teams.

The other standout last-16 ties see Juventus meet Freiburg, while Jose Mourinho's Roma will take on Real Sociedad as they bid to follow up last season's inaugural Europa Conference League triumph.  

Feyenoord, who Roma beat in the final of that competition, have been paired with Shakhtar Donetsk, while surprise Bundesliga challengers Union Berlin will face Belgium's Union Saint-Gilloise.

Six-time winners Sevilla – the most successful club in UEFA Cup/Europa League history – will face Fenerbahce, while Bayer Leverkusen will take on Ferencvaros. 

The first legs of the last-16 ties will take place on March 9, with the group-stage winners hosting the return fixtures one week later. 

Europa League last-16 draw in full

Bayer Leverkusen v Ferencvaros
Juventus v Freiburg
Manchester United v Real Betis
Roma v Real Sociedad
Sevilla v Fenerbahce
Shakhtar Donetsk v Feyenoord
Sporting CP v Arsenal
Union Berlin v Union Saint-Gilloise

Neymar is contracted with Paris Saint-Germain until 2025 but the French champions have reportedly transfer listed him.

The Brazilian forward is on a hefty wage, believed to be around €36 million per year.

Neymar has netted 12 goals in 19 Ligue 1 games this season, adding another five goals in nine appearances in other competitions.


TOP STORY – MEETING HELD AS CHELSEA'S NEYMAR INTEREST DEVELOPS

Le Parisien reports Chelsea owner Todd Boehly has met with PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi about a transfer for Neymar.

The report claims the meeting was held in Paris, discussing the conditions around a potential transfer in the next transfer window.

It is claimed that a fee of around €60 million (£53m) has been discussed, although Neymar's significant wages may be a stumbling block to overcome.

 

ROUND-UP

– Inter defender Denzel Dumfries is set to be the subject of off-season bids from both Arsenal and Manchester United, claims Fichajes. The Premier League duo both see an opportunity to sign the Dutchman below market value.

– Fabrizio Romano reports Barcelona have agreed to sign Mexican right-back Julian Araujo from MLS club LA Galaxy. The deal is worth €4 million, with a contract to be signed up until 2026.

– Sport Bild claims Bayern Munich are monitoring the status of Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford, with consideration being put to a bid prior to the next transfer window. Arsenal are also keep tabs on Rashford's situation, according to Football Insider.

– Bild also reports Bayern are still keen on Tottenham forward Harry Kane but will not be drawn into a bidding war for his services, with Manchester United in the hunt too.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta wants the club to sign Real Sociedad's 24-year-old midfielder Martin Zubimendi, reports Sport.

Liverpool have held preliminary talks for Torino defender Perr Schuurs, claims Tuttosport.

Arsenal are still desperate to add a new face in central midfield and will reportedly make late runs at Chelsea's Jorginho and Leicester City's Youri Tielemans before the transfer deadline.

Tielemans is one of Leicester's top talents, appearing in all 20 of their Premier League games this season while contributing three goals and an assist from his 18 starts.

Jorginho is in his fifth season at Stamford Bridge and remains an integral part of Chelsea's squad, making 15 league starts this season, including wearing the captain's armband in their two most recent fixtures.

However, both players are in the final six months of their contracts and are set to become available via free transfers at the end of the campaign, and their clubs may be willing to accept a significantly reduced figure for highly valuable assets.

 

TOP STORY – GUNNERS GUNNING FOR MIDFIELD ACTION AT THE DEADLINE

According to Football London, Arsenal's pursuit of 21-year-old Brighton and Hove Albion standout Moises Caicedo appears to have been unsuccessful, and they now view Jorginho as an acceptable alternative.

The report states Chelsea are willing to let the Italy international leave, indicating he will become expendable if the impending arrival of Benfica's Enzo Fernandez comes to fruition.

Football London also adds Arsenal will make another push at both Caicedo and Real Sociedad's Martin Zubimendi, but they are considered unlikely options.

Meanwhile, 90min claims Leicester would be more open to allowing Tielemans to leave if they were not locked in a relegation battle, but as it stands they would need a "huge" bid to prioritise a transfer fee over their Premier League survival.

 

ROUND-UP

– Calciomercato is reporting Leeds United will try to secure Roma's Nicolo Zaniolo after he snubbed Bournemouth, but Roma are unlikely to accept unless the full transfer fee is paid up front.

– According to L'Equipe, Paris Saint-Germain are interested in a loan move for Chelsea's Hakim Ziyech, who would prefer a loan to France instead of a fellow Premier League side.

– Manchester United captain Harry Maguire has rejected a loan approach from Inter and will instead opt to fight for his place, although he will re-evaluate his future at the end of the season, per the Daily Star.

– El Nacional is reporting Liverpool will make a run at signing Chelsea's N'Golo Kante when his contract expires after the season.

– According to Football Insider, Southampton have agreed to meet the £26.2million (€30m) release clause for 22-year-old Braga forward Vitinha.

Barcelona feel Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves has one foot out of the door and are optimistic about their chance of signing him at the end of the season.

Neves, 25, has spent the past six seasons with Wolves after arriving during their last season in the Championship (2017-18), racking up over 200 appearances for the club along with 28 goals.

The central midfielder, a regular for Portugal, has caught the eye of Europe's elite clubs.

Wolves had been hopeful of extending Neves' stay at the club, but with their future in the Premier League in doubt, they might have already started to plan for life without him.

 

TOP STORY – WOLVES SIGNING INDICATES LOOMING NEVES DEPARTURE

According to Sport, Barcelona believe Wolves are signing 21-year-old Flamengo midfielder Joao Gomes as a direct replacement for Neves, who they expect to leave at the end of the season.

The report states Barcelona know what it will cost to pry him away from the Premier League and are comfortable with the price, which is said to be "much more feasible" than the €60million price tag for Real Sociedad's Martin Zubimendi.

Real Madrid are also expected to pursue Neves, who they reportedly feel has "the potential to become the new Casemiro".

 

ROUND-UP

– The Telegraph and Fabrizio Romano state Chelsea will make another run at signing 22-year-old Benfica and Argentina standout Enzo Fernandez, and are willing to meet the £105m (€120m) release clause if they can pay it in installments.

– According to Bild, Tottenham have submitted a £22m (€25m) verbal offer to Bayer Leverkusen for 21-year-old Ecuador centre-back Piero Hincapie.

Newcastle United have had their latest £20m offer for 18-year-old Flamengo midfielder Matheus Franca turned down, per Fabrizio Romano.

– Newcastle are also said to be looking to replace Jonjo Shelvey, who is set to join Nottingham Forest, with Sheffield United's Sander Berge.

– The Daily Mail is reporting Brighton and Hove Albion have rejected a £70m approach from Arsenal for 21-year-old midfielder Moises Caicedo, and are holding out for £80m.

– According to Sport, there is mutual interest between Barca and Atletico Madrid forward Joao Felix, who will spend the rest of the season on loan at Chelsea.

Carlo Ancelotti hailed a "complete" Real Madrid performance as "one of the best of the season" despite a goalless LaLiga draw with Real Sociedad on Sunday.

Madrid sit five points behind leaders Barcelona after failing to breach Imanol Alguacil's defence in a largely one-sided encounter at Santiago Bernabeu.

La Real goalkeeper Alex Remiro thwarted a dominant Madrid with seven saves, the most he has managed in a LaLiga game this season, including three fine stops against the energetic Vinicius Junior.

Head coach Ancelotti was "satisfied" with his side's showing, though, as third-placed La Real held on for a precious point that kept them just three behind Madrid, having played a game more.

He said: "It was a shame because we played very well and we deserved to win. We played a complete game, one of the best of the season, but we didn't have any luck.

"The team is improving and growing and physically we are much better. Now the injured return and we have confidence for the coming months. 

"We have done very well with and without the ball and all we had to do was score, we came so close but it is a draw. I am satisfied because the team has played very well."

The majority of Madrid's attacking threat came through Vinicius, who attempted 21 dribbles – the most by one player in a single LaLiga match since Opta began recording in the 2005-06 season.

Dani Ceballos impressed in a rare start in the Madrid midfield, while Eduardo Camavinga showed his versatility in a fine performance at left-back.

"We pushed the 90 minutes to the fullest with great intensity, Real Sociedad has not played as they like because we pressed well up top," Ancelotti added.

"The extra time of the Copa del Rey [a 3-1 quarter-final win over Atletico Madrid on Thursday] was not noticed, we have had a high intensity for the 90 minutes.

"It was difficult to make changes because nobody deserved to leave the field, the team was playing well and I did not want to change the dynamics. 

"Ceballos and [Federico] Valverde played very well. [Camavinga] did well, he is an option because of his quality and his energy. He is not used to playing there and with Vinicius they created many chances.

"The game was good but if you don't score... now we are five points behind and we have to chase."

Madrid will hope to make up ground on Xavi's Barca when they host top-four chasers Valencia on Thursday.

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