Transfers

Ernesto Valverde plays down talk of Andres Iniesta leaving for China

Ernesto Valverde wants Andres Iniesta to stay with Barcelona, but would be open to having talks if the Chinese Super League came in with an offer. ESPN FC’s Layla Anna-Lee takes to the pitch with Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen where he reveals some of his penalty-saving secrets. Check out Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s accuracy as he attempts the crossbar challenge. Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde has said he will only talk about the possibility of Andres Iniesta moving to China when there’s an offer on the table. Diario Sport reported on Friday that Iniesta could walk away from Barca in “one of the biggest deals of the summer” after receiving an offer from Chinese Super League club Tianjin Quanjian worth €35 million a season. Iniest...

Arjen Robben’s Bayern Munich considering MLS, China or Qatar move

Jupp Heynckes candidly explains why he was absent from the bench for Bayern Munich’s 2-1 win over Schalke last Saturday. Jupp Heynckes is confident Manuel Neuer will be back and ready to play for Germany at the 2018 World Cup. Bayern Munich restored their 18-point lead atop the Bundesliga with a 2-1 win over Schalke, thanks to goals from Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller. Bayern Munich winger Arjen Robben has told Sportbuzzer that he has no plans to retire and could follow in the footsteps of Bastian Schweinsteiger and move to Major League Soccer, saying he is also considering China and Qatar. Robben, 34, has won six Bundesliga titles and four DFB Pokals during his time at the club. He also scored Bayern’s late winner in the all-German Champions League final against Borussia...

Man United’s Romelu Lukaku wants Anderlecht return later in career

Craig Burley breaks down the latest transfer rumours, all of which combine for big potential changes on Manchester United’s back line. The FC crew examine Paul Pogba’s future at Manchester United amid reports of a rift with Jose Mourinho and interest from Real Madrid. Romelu Lukaku has expressed his desire to rejoin Anderlecht after his time with Manchester United comes to an end. Lukaku, who joined United from Everton in the summer on a £75 million transfer, visited Anderlecht’s training ground earlier this week and said that he would like to return to his boyhood club before his career is over. “My dream was always to play for Anderlecht,” Lukaku said in a video recorded by the Belgian club, which he left for Chelsea in 2011. “I will definitely return ...

Athletic Bilbao clear Ager Aketxe to complete move to MLS

Athletic Bilbao have confirmed that Ager Aketxe is set to move to Major League Soccer and terminated the midfielder’s contract on Friday. Aketxe has been heavily linked with a move to Toronto FC in recent days, though the Spanish club did not specify Aketxe’s destination within MLS. The 24-year-old has made 12 appearances in all competions for Athletic this season, but none since December. He was most commonly used as a substitute in the Europa League, and he also started two matches in the Copa del Rey. Aketxe spent last season on loan with Cadiz in the second division, where he scored five goals in 18 games. Athletic said they will have the option to buy back the former Spain youth international in the future.

Red Bulls finally sign ‘Kaku’ Gamarra as young designated player

Alejandro Romero Gamarra is near a move to the New York Red Bulls. The New York Red Bulls finally completed the singing of rising Argentine star Alejandro “Kaku” Romero Gamarra on Friday, after weeks of uncertainty. The 23-year-old winger, who joins the Red Bulls as a young designated player and will wear the No. 10 shirt, moves from Atletico Huracan, who had announced his $6.25 million transfer in December. But the deal was held up while lawyers involved in the transfer refuted their payment for their participation, leading the Argentina club’s president to express his frustration last month. The details finally settled, Red Bulls sporting director Denis Hamlett said the club was “very pleased to reach an agreement with all parties and complete this deal.” &#...

Dortmund unworried Michy Batshuayi’s goals might raise fee – Peter Stoger

Borussia Dortmund’s Peter Stoger admits the club is lucky to have Michy Batshuayi after the Belgian scored his fifth goal in three matches since moving to Germany. Borussia Dortmund coach Peter Stoger is not worried Michy Batshuayi might be priced out of a permanent move to the club if his goal-scoring form continues. Dortmund snapped up Batshuayi on a six-month loan but without an option to buy, and he has since gone on to score five goals in three matches and has had a hand in all three other goals the club have scored in those games. Batshuayi, 24, scored twice in Thursday night’s 3-2 Europa League win over Atalanta — including the 91st-minute winner. He said after the game that he’s not concerned about his future while trying to do his best with his new club. Sp...

Malcom set to decide on Prem move as Arsenal, Man United, Spurs watch on

ESPN FC’s Paul Mariner takes a look at the latest transfer rumours surrounding the likes of Jack Wilshere, Emre Can, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and more. Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur target Malcom has told Brazilian media he will leave Bordeaux in the summer and “will choose my next club” soon. Malcom, 20, was linked with United before they bought Alexis Sanchez, and to Arsenal after they had sold the Chile international. ESPN FC sources also revealed that Tottenham had met the player’s representatives last month and had made him a transfer target for the summer. Bordeaux would not sell the forward in the winter window, but have told their top scorer he can go at the end of the campaign. “I already said I wanted to leave this winter for a new chall...

Cedric Bakambu confident Beijing Sinobo Guoan transfer will go through

Cedric Bakambu left Villarreal in January. Cedric Bakambu has said the completion of his move to the Chinese Super League is “just a question of timing.” Bakambu, who left Villarreal in January, has been on a winter training camp with Beijing Sinobo Guoan, who he is set to join for €40 million, in Portugal. The proposed deal is set to make the DR Congo international forward one of the highest-paid players in the world with an estimated annual pre-tax salary of €18m but has stalled for almost a month. However, Bakambu told AFP an end to the saga was in sight, saying: “There’s no problem, it’s just a question of timing. I expect the transfer to go through.” The 26-year-old, who paid the release clause in his Villarreal contract during the winter window, ad...

Liverpool stepping up pursuit of Roma’s Alisson – sources

Liverpool have their sights set on Alisson to replace Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius. Liverpool are stepping up their pursuit of Roma goalkeeper Alisson after holding talks with the player’s agent, sources have told ESPN FC. Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has made a new goalkeeper one of his top priorities this summer and Alisson has emerged as his top target. Simon Mignolet has lost the No.1 shirt at Anfield in recent weeks with Loris Karius getting a run in the side, but both have failed to convince that they can solve Liverpool’s goalkeeping issues. Alisson has established himself as one of the best goalkeepers in Europe after impressing at Roma in the last 18 months. A host of Europe’s top clubs have been tracking the Brazil international, but Liverpool are attempting t...

Tottenham facing dilemma over Toby Alderweireld future – source

Alejandro Moreno discusses Toby Alderweireld’s growth at Tottenham and where he fits among the top centre-backs in world football. Mauricio Pochettino praised his players after Spurs overcame a nightmare start in Turin to draw 2-2 in the Champions League last-16 first leg. Tottenham Hotspur face a conundrum over Toby Alderweireld’s future after the latest contract talks with the defender ended in stalemate, a source close to the situation has told ESPN FC. Spurs have been trying to tie Alderweireld to a new deal for more than a year but are no closer to an agreement after talks broke down last month. Alderweireld’s current deal, worth £55,000-a-week, expires in 2019. The Belgium international, 28, is aware of his value and would like a long-term contract worth closer to £...

Zlatan Ibrahimovic eyeing homes in Los Angeles amid Galaxy link – sources

Craig Burley breaks down the latest transfer rumours, all of which combine for big potential changes on Manchester United’s back line. David Beckham talks Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s potential move to MLS, saying it would be terrific for the league but he’d also be happy for him to stay at Manchester United. MANCHESTER — Zlatan Ibrahimovic is preparing for life after Manchester United by house hunting in Los Angeles, sources have told ESPN FC. The striker has been heavily linked with a move to Major League Soccer to join LA Galaxy when his contract expires at the end of the season. Sources have told ESPN FC that Ibrahimovic is yet to make a decision about his future and has not ruled out staying in Europe — or even at United. But with a move to the United States one ...

Patrick Kluivert advises son Justin to choose La Liga over Premier League

Justin Kluivert has impressed for Ajax this season. Former Barcelona forward Patrick Kluivert says his son Justin is likely to play in La Liga someday, but has advised the 18-year-old to keep developing at Ajax. Six goals in 19 Eredivisie games this season for the Amsterdam side, as well as a repertoire of dazzling tricks on the ball, has seen Kluivert Jr. linked with a move to one of Europe’s elite, with Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea all reportedly keen on him. Kluivert Sr., who won the Champions League with Ajax in 1995 during his career, told Spanish radio show El Larguero that his son was “doing very well” but should be in no hurry to leave Ajax, while suggesting that for his style a move to La Liga might suit better than the Premier L...