RAHEEM STERLING’S s long-term future at Manchester City has become the subject of renewed speculation after it was reported by several newspapers talks on a new deal are yet to begin.
The 23-year-old will have two years left on his contract at the end of this season, although he has not been told when the negotiations about an extension may start.
According to the Daily Mirror, the lack of progress will attract the attention of Real Madrid, where Zinedine Zidane is said to be a fan of the £70million-rated England forward, who is the Premier League’s fourth highest goalscorer this season.
David De Gea is set to disappoint Real Madrid and stay at Manchester United after talks over a new £220,000-a-week deal progressed well, the Times reports. It is thought the deal would make him the highest-paid keeper in football. The Spain international, who came close to moving to the Bernabeau in 2015, has 18 months left on his current contract at Old Trafford, where he has been since United bought him in 2011.
Real were reported to have appealed to Chelsea keeper Thibaut Courtois to hold off signing a new contract with the Blues until April, as they wanted more time to decide whether to go with the Belgian or De Gea.
The Times claims Spurs are prepared to sell Toby Alderweireld in the summer after reaching an impasse in talks over a new contract. The Belgium defender, who turns 29 on March 2, is said to be refusing to budge on demands for £150,000-a-week deal that Spurs will not sign off for a player of his age. Manager Mauricio Pochettino is said to support the decision, that will allow the money to be spent strengthening other areas of the squad and avoid upsetting other players. Spurs reportedly made a final offer of £110,000-a-week to the player who cost £11.5million when he joined on a five-year contract in 2015.
Senior figures at the Bernabeu are privately admitting they are ready for Gareth Bale to leave Real Madrid this season, according to the Independent. After struggling with injuries and learning Spanish, the Wales international, 28, is perceived as growing increasingly isolated at the club. Arriving from Spurs in 2013 after a rumoured world-record deal, Bale has been part of three Champions League wins.
Players to watch
Jamaal Lascelles – Chelsea are planning a summer swoop for Newcastle’s 24-year-old captain and defender, the Evening Standard says.
Mauro Icardi – “Two important clubs” approached the Inter Milan and Argentina striker, 25, in the January transfer window, his wife and agent Wanda Nara has said, according to the Daily Mail.