Football rumours from the media – 13th February, 2018

What the papers say

Doubts have emerged over the futures of Chris Smalling and Phil Jones as Jose Mourinho looks to revamp Manchester United’s defence, the Daily Mirror reports. A defeat to Newcastle at the weekend has left the manager looking at his options for the upcoming summer transfer window, with the boss hoping to match the spending of Liverpool and Manchester City to bolster the back line, the paper says. Smalling, 28, and Jones, 25, look to be most vulnerable to the plans with both players’ current deals keeping them at Old Trafford until 2019.

Uncertainties remain about Simon Mignolet’s time at Liverpool, according to the Guardian, which reports the 29-year-old goalkeeper is set to be left out of his team’s Champions league game against Porto later this week. Mignolet was usually thought of as the preferred choice for cup games but it would now appear Loris Karius is boss Jurgen Klopp’s number one having put in an impressive performance against Southampton, the paper says.

Chelsea v Norwich City – Emirates FA Cup Third Round Replay – Stamford Bridge
Michy Batshuayi has already impressed Dortmund after joining the club on loan in January (Tim Goode/Empics)

Michy Batshuayi appears to be impressing Borussia Dortmund after joining the club on loan last month – so much so that the German side appear to want to keep the 24-year-old permanently, according to the Daily Mail. The striker has already scored three times in two appearances and Dortmund will now be hoping Roman Abramovich agrees to a more concrete deal in the summer, the paper says.

Former Chelsea player and now Aston Villa captain John Terry is to decide on his future at the end of this season’s campaign, the Daily Mail reports. The 37-year-old has been playing in the Championship since joining Villa Park last year and will settle on his future and 12-month contract option at the end of the season, the paper says. A stay at Vila could see the defender back in the Premier league, as Villa moved into second place after a win at Birmingham on Sunday, but with Terry appearing reluctant to ever play against his former Stamford Bridge team-mates again, a move to the US or China could also be a possibility.

Social media round-up

Players to watch

Juventus v Real Madrid – UEFA Champions League – Final – National Stadium
Gareth Bale appears to be happy at Real Madrid

Gareth Bale: Whilst speculation has long been mounting that the Wales international will return to England with a move to Manchester Untied in the summer, Bale’s agent has insisted he is happy at current club Real Madrid, the Manchester Evening News reports. It says the agent told Tuttosport that Bale “loves” the Spanish side and “doesn’t want to move”. It remains to be seen whether United will reignite any interest in the player, having strengthened their attacking options with the signing of Alexis Sanchez.

Arturo Vidal: A number of clubs are said to have the 30-year-old on their radar as he nears the end of his deal with Bayern Munich. Among those alerted to the midfielder’s situation are Manchester United and Chelsea, the Daily Mirror reports, but Vidal is said to want to extend his stay at the German club.

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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