06.08.2022
What Frenkie de Jong’s agents are doing as Chelsea ‘lodge swap deal’ offer to Barcelona

Frenkie de Jong’s agents are understood to be crunching the numbers in order to reach a wage-cut agreement with Barcelona to keep the Dutchman at the cash-strapped Catalan club. However, Chelsea are reportedly pushing to pip Manchester United to the signing of the midfielder and are thought to have offered the La Liga giants Marcus Alonso as a makeweight within a potential swap deal.

The Blaugrana remain embroiled within a crippling financial crisis which is currently preventing them from registering their string of new summer signings. Selling De Jong would go some way to rebalancing the books and reducing the squad’s substantial wage bill in order to see the club’s new stars approved by La Liga.

Barcelona, who still owe De Jong a significant amount in deferred wages, are understood to have issued the 25-year-old with an ultimatum: take a hefty wage cut this summer or leave the club for pastures new. Despite strong interest from United and Chelsea, De Jong is said to remain intent on continuing with Barcelona and his desire to fight for his Nou Camp future has left his representatives scrambling for a solution.

According to Sport, De Jong’s agents are now exploring the possibility of lowering the player’s wages in order to facilitate his stay at the Spanish club. Should no suitable agreement be reached, it is only then that De Jong would be open to discussing a potential move to Chelsea.

Having already rejected United’s advances this summer in order to increase his chances of a Barcelona stay, it seems De Jong is intent on resisting Chelsea’s interest too. The Spanish outlet claim the Blues acknowledge it will likely be difficult to lure the former Ajax star away from Spain this summer, but have a potential ace up their sleeve.

The west London club have already submitted an offer thought to be in excess of £59million for the midfielder and remain hopeful of concluding a deal. However, the Blues may well seek to include Alonso within a package for less than the ten million Barcelona are currently offering for the left-back, in order to pressure the Spanish side into accelerating De Jong’s exit over the coming weeks.

READ MOREChelsea ‘receive green light’ from second defensive target in timely Tuchel transfer boostChelsea ‘internally discuss offering midfielder’ to Leicester in Wesley Fofana swap bidChelsea target Wesley Fofana flirts with transfer with mysterious Instagram activity

Chelsea are thought to have earmarked this weekend as the opportunity to get a deal for De Jong back on track. In the event that the player’s agents cannot find a solution over his current salary and unpaid wages, it is understood Chelsea and Barcelona will look to close an agreement regarding Alonso in a separate transaction, as opposed to a swap deal.

Despite not even having reached an agreement with the Catalan club over personal terms, Alonso is said to be calm over his future and expects a transfer to be finalised next week with the Spanish giants thought to have given the defender their word. Alonso is also understood to have asked Thomas Tuchel not to select him for Chelsea’s Premier League opener against Everton on Saturday.

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  • 16 минут назад 13.08.2022Sport
    ‘He has made mistakes’: Jamie Redknapp blames Erik ten Hag for Man United’s first-half at Brentford

    Jamie Redknapp has blamed Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag for their 4-0 thumping away at Brentford.

    The Red Devils were completely dismantled within the first 45 minutes of the game, as Josh Dasilva, Ben Mee, Bryan Mbuemo and Mathias Jensen all scored past a helpless David de Gea.

    Even though there were errors leading to some of these goals, from the United players, Redknapp insists that it was ten Hag who ‘made mistakes’ at the Brentford Community Stadium.

    Speaking at half-time, Redknapp said: ‘I don’t think I’ve ever seen a half quite like this. Brentford have just been too strong for United. Someone has got to take responsibility.

    ‘I cannot believe what I am watching. They’ve got the badge on but they look like they’ve just been thrown out there. The manager has made mistakes. Eriksen cannot play in defensive midfield and Martinez is not strong enough.’

    Redknapp’s complain on Eriksen was validated by the fact the Dane was caught in possession on the edge of his area by Mathias Jensen, who capitalised on the mistake with a goal.

    Redknapp also took aim at United’s new signing Lisandro Martinez, who was easily beaten to the ball for Ben Mee’s goal.

    The Argentinian defender was hooked at half-time as ten Hag looked to find a way back into the game – at which point Redknapp suggested that Martinez is ‘not strong enough’.

    Expectations were high for Martinez, who was one of United’s top transfer priorities this summer, but the United No. 6 has struggled with the physicality of the Premier League since moving to Old Trafford.

    The 24-year-old completed a £55.3million move to the Red Devils in July, having won two Eredivisie titles and the Dutch Cup during his three-year stay at Ajax.

    Despite only being in charge for two competitive games so far, ten Hag is already under a mounting pressure at Old Trafford.

    Their 2-1 defeat to Brighton in their Premier League season opener left fans with a sour taste in their mouth, but hopeful things would be different in their trip to west London. They were not.

    Things don’t get much easier for the Dutchman, who must welcome Jurgen Klopp and his side to Old Trafford next weekend.

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  • 1 час, 29 минут назад 13.08.2022Sport
    Emma Raducanu’s new coach Dmitry Tursunov caught up in Russian propaganda – ‘He is ours’

    Emma Raducanu is continuing to find herself in tricky territory after hiring Russian coach Dmitry Tursunov. There were fears the country would use his link with the US Open champion to further their own agenda, and the country’s tennis federation has now fired back after he started working with the 19-year-old on a trial basis, claiming him as their own.

    Raducanu linked up with Tursunov for the recent Citi Open in Washington, months after splitting with coach Torben Beltz. Her decision to hire the former pro came with controversy due to his Russian origin, as the chair of the all Parliamentary group on Russia shared his fears that the world No 10 could get caught up in the country’s propaganda.

    And it seems the Bromley local is already in an uncomfortable situation as the president of the Russian Tennis Federation staked his claim over Tursunov, despite his new partnership with the Brit. “He is ours, he happens at our training camps, we do not leave him, we support him,” Shamil Tarpishchev said, per TACC.

    The RTF boss also stood by the former world No 20 despite his decision to work with Raducanu instead of helping the country’s local talent. He continued: “The question of whom he trains is the personal opinion of the athlete. We once offered him to work, just like Chesnokov, but he chose a different path, it is more profitable to train one of the leading athletes today.”

    Tarpishchev’s words come after Labour MP and chair of the all Parliamentary group on Russia Chris Bryant urged the British No 1 to reconsider her decision to enlist Tursonov for a trial. “The Kremlin will portray this as a PR coup and an indication that the UK doesn’t really care about the war in Ukraine, so it’ll be a real shame if Emma goes ahead with this,” he told Telegraph Sport.

    “I urge her to think again and at the very least to condemn Putin’s barbaric war.” Raducanu herself has said little on her recept link-up with the retired pro, as he joined her for the tournament in Washington but was not with her this week in Toronto, where he had pre-existing commitments.

    Tursunov became a free agent when he parted ways with world No 2 Anett Kontaveir earlier this year, after it was reported that he was struggling to obtain visas to travel for the tour as a result of his Russian citizenship.

    Before leading the Estonian to a first appearance at the WTA Finals and a top five debut, Tursunov worked with former world No 2 Aryna Sabalenka. And if his trial with Raducanu proves successful, he could join the reigning US Open champion in Flushing Meadows for her title defence.

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  • 1 час, 29 минут назад 13.08.2022Sport
    Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag explains Cristiano Ronaldo decision as Neville issues warning

    Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag and club legend Gary Neville both weighed in on Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to the starting line-up at the Brentford Community Stadium, having missed out against Brighton last weekend. Neville also warned his former club to ‘defend for their lives’ against the Bees with 5ft 9in centre-back Lisandro Martinez among a small squad of Red Devils stars chosen to take on a big, physical Brentford side.

    Ronaldo reportedly asked to leave the club last month and missed the vast majority of pre-season due to personal issues. His only warm-up action was the first 45 minutes against Rayo Vallecano in a friendly at Old Trafford and after being hauled off at half-time, he controversially left the stadium before the final whistle.

    It therefore wasn’t too surprising when the Portuguese was left out of the starting line-up against Brighton last weekend. But Ten Hag’s experimental approach – which involved deploying midfielder Christian Eriksen in a false nine role – backfired as the Seagulls won 2-1.

    Ronaldo was thrown back into the action at the Brentford Community Stadium and before it got underway, both Ten Hag and Neville shed more light on his situation.

    “We had problems from numbers in the squad, offensively,” Ten Hag explained to Sky Sports. “He’s always a threat and he scores goals, so that’s why he’s in the team. Second half last week when he came on, it makes it difficult for the opponents. I expect the same today.”

    When quizzed on the magnitude of the match, Neville added: “This is a really big game considering what happened last weekend. Liverpool coming up in eight or nine days so this is a massive game for the club in terms of building confidence.

    “Ronaldo is guaranteed goals compared to others. What I like about him playing up front is the fact that they’ve got [Christian] Eriksen and [Bruno] Fernandes in behind, so there should be no shortage of clever passes. What he’s got in [Marcus] Rashford and [Jadon] Sancho should be willing runners to make sure he gets space in the box.

    “I admire what Ten Hag has done today. He’s come here today and said we’re going to play total football. But in set pieces I can only see Ronaldo or [Harry] Maguire in that zone. United are going to have to defend for their lives because they’re giants, Brentford.”

    Ronaldo is thought to be keen on joining a Champions League club after United finished sixth last campaign. A host of top European sides, including Chelsea and Bayern Munich, have since distanced themselves from the veteran forward which leaves his future hanging in the balance.

    Ten Hag publicly maintains that his chats with Ronaldo have been positive and the club are keen to see him fulfil the final year of his contract. He scored 24 goals in all competitions last term after sealing a blockbuster return to the Red Devils following spells with Real Madrid and Juventus.

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  • 1 час, 29 минут назад 13.08.2022Sport
    Man Utd star David de Gea suffers calamitous error gifting Brentford easy goal

    Manchester United got off to the worst possible start in their match against Brentford after David de Gea’s calamitous error from Josh Dasilva’s tame shot. Erik ten Hag made just one change from his side’s disappointing defeat to Brighton last week.

    Cristiano Ronaldo came in for Scott McTominay with some hope United would be able to bounce back with a win. Brentford have not beaten United since 1938, but started the better of the two sides as the Red Devils struggled to get out of their own half.

    The hosts were relentless in their pressing, giving United players little time on the ball. And Brentford eventually got the reward for their hardwork in rather fortuitous circumstanes.

    Ronaldo was dispossesed in the middle of his own half, going down and calling for a foul. The referee waved play on as Dasilva picked up the ball from long range with no United defender coming out to close him down.

    We’ll be bringing you the very latest updates, pictures, and video on this breaking news story.

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  • 2 часа, 16 минут назад 13.08.2022Sport
    Cristiano Ronaldo STARTS for Manchester United against Brentford for the first time this season

    Cristiano Ronaldo has been selected in Erik ten Hag’s starting XI for Saturday’s match against Brentford.

    The Portuguese legend was only on the bench in United’s dismal 2-1 home loss to Brighton before coming on as a second-half subsitute.

    Ronaldo comes back into the team as Ten Hag seeks a first win in the Premier League as United boss.

    The wantaway forward informed United he wanted to leave the club earlier in transfer the window, but after several of Europe’s elite clubs distanced themselves from a potential transfer, the 37-year-old looks set to stay at Old Trafford.

    Ronaldo scored 24 goals for United last season, and following a shocking home defeat last time out he finds himself back in the starting line-up with his side desperate for a win.

    The Red Devils have not lost two opening games in a Premier League season since 1992/93 – when they went on to lift the first ever trophy – and Ronaldo’s presence will lend some much needed bite to a side that appeared toothless a week ago.

    Scott McTominay drops to the bench, with Christian Eriksen set to play a deeper role than last time out, alongside Fred, with Bruno Fernandes in his familiar No 10 position.

    Ronaldo lines up alongside Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford in a front line not short on pace.

    It is also Danish midfielder Eriksen’s first game back at the Brentford Community Stadium since departing the west Londoners at the end of his short-term contract lasting from January to June 2022.

    With Ronaldo’s future at the club still far from certain, despite a lack of interested parties, United have been linked with a number of transfer targets which have drawn criticism from supporters.

    Reports of interest in Bologna’s Austrian forward Marko Arnautovic drew widespread condemnation on social media, with ex-Arsenal and England forward Paul Merson describing him as a ‘primark player’.

    And with Anthony Martial’s future at the club also as yet unclear Ten Hag is desperately searching for a No 9 and, according to The Athletic, United are considering ex-Chelsea flop Alvaro Morata as ‘a genuine possibility’ to solve their striker problems.

    The report says that United have already held talks with Atletico Madrid and have been told that the former Real Madrid man could cost nearly £30million in order to pull him away from the Spanish capital.

    The 29-year-old is no stranger to the Premier League, having made 47 appearances in the competition for Chelsea, scoring 16 goals.

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  • 3 часа, 29 минут назад 13.08.2022Sport
    Everton star Amadou Onana follows costly mistake with magic moment in wild Toffees debut

    Everton new boy Amadou Onana had a moment to forget with a mistake that led to a goal against Aston Villa on Saturday, before immediately going on a mazy run from the kick-off to set up an opportunity that saw the Toffees pull one back. The former Lille youngster had a wild ride on his Premier League debut with fans given plenty to process on their big-money acquisition.

    Onana, who only completed his move from Lille officially on Wednesday, was left on the bench against Villa as manager Frank Lampard plumped for Alex Iwobi and Abdoulaye Doucoure in midfield. It was evident that the youngster was not up to speed when Doucoure came off injured in the first half, only to be replaced by Tom Davies.

    The 20-year-old, who cost Everton £33.5million, emerged from the bench in the 81st minute and was immediately thrust into the action. Just four minutes into his Premier League debut, an audacious midfield run was snuffed out by Villa who immediately went on the attack and scored with Emi Buendia.

    After a head-in-hands moment, Onana picked himself off, dusted himself down and mounted the perfect response. Almost straight from kick-off, the Belgian international embarked on a powerful run down the left flank, breezing past several players before his low cross was tapped in by Lucas Digne for a humiliating own goal against his former side.

    Onana could have rescued a point for the Toffees late on when he met a hopeful ball into the box, but Calum Chambers was there to make a crucial block and deny another wave of emotion on the youngster’s rollercoaster Everton bow.

    Although there were positives to take, Lampard will still have left the West Midlands disappointed after slumping to a second consecutive defeat to start the season. The Toffees only narrowly avoided relegation last term and were beaten 1-0 by Chelsea last weekend.

    Their attacking shortage was on full display against Villa with Anthony Gordon – most often deployed on the wing – asked to fill in through the middle again. Everton struggled to create anything in the first half but showed more intent after the break, particularly in the game’s dying minutes after Onana gave fans hope.

    A new-look back-five included James Tarkowski and Conor Coady, and while the latter’s long passing was on full display, it wasn’t enough to keep Villa at bay. With a tricky fixture against newly-promoted Nottingham Forest next on the agenda, former Everton centre-back Ashley Williams believes that Lampard should prioritise his attacking options.

    “Everton need a striker, a focal point,” he told the BBC. “They need someone to shoulder the burden of scoring goals in that team.

    “They need more possession – I don’t know how long we’ve been saying it, they need more control in games. The performance last weekend was OK, but today they weren’t as good.”

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Sport What Frenkie de Jong's agents are doing as Chelsea 'lodge swap deal' offer to Barcelona