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Man City ‘closing in’ on Man Utd striker target with replacement already lined up



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Manchester City are ‘about to close’ a deal to sign Manchester United striker target Julian Alvarez, according to one journalist.

Alvarez, 21, has been making headlines in his native Argentina thanks to his promising form at River Plate. He hit 18 goals in 21 games during the most recent Liga Profesional season as River Plate won the domestic crown.

Alvarez is clearly good enough to make it at a top club in Europe and transfer rumours surrounding his future are rife.

Aston Villa and Tottenham were the original clubs eyeing his signature, before Man Utd came in.

Reports claim Ralf Rangnick is eager to sign Alvarez, as soon as Anthony Martial’s future is sorted.

However, the Red Devils boss could be left disappointed as rivals City are marching ahead in the pursuit.

According to Sport Illustrated, who cite journalist Hernan Castillo, Pep Guardiola’s side will soon finalise an agreement for Alvarez.

Two Julian Alvarez proposals made

Castillo is not the only person to provide a transfer update. According to Cesar Luis Merlo, City have made two proposals for a deal.

They are willing to sign him this month or in the summer, depending on River Plate’s preference.

There are also rumours of an initial loan move which will become permanent after a six-month spell at the Etihad.

Whatever form it may take, Alvarez’s transfer may be imminent as River Plate already have his replacement in mind. They are attempting to sign Atlanta United’s Ezequiel Barco.

City were not expecting to bring in a new centre-forward this month, although Ferran Torres’ exit seems to have changed their stance.

The player left for Barcelona after informing City officials of his desire to make it at the five-time Champions League winners.

With Gabriel Jesus now wanting to play out wide, a successor to Sergio Aguero needs to be found. Alvarez seems to have the capability to fill his boots, although it will not be an easy task.

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Spanish club plan Man City raid

Meanwhile, Spanish club Real Betis are reportedly ready to test the waters by making an approach for Oleksandr Zinchenko.

Zinchenko’s reputation as a utility man means he does not start in the Premier League as much as some of his team-mates. Indeed, he has only made seven appearances in the competition this season, registering one assist in that time.

The player’s contract runs until June 2024, putting City in a strong position in terms of a transfer.

Nevertheless, The Sun report Real Betis are aiming to test their resolve by preparing to move in. They have already made an ‘enquiry’ about Zinchenko’s availability, too.

However, it looks set to be good news for Guardiola and City as the player has no intention of leaving Manchester.

He wants to continue being a part of the trophy-laden squad and to help them win more silverware this season.

Zinchenko is also gunning for a new deal at the Etihad, which could see him spend the majority of his prime with the club.

READ MORE: Ajax starlet with ‘unprecedented’ talent backed to join Man City amid Tottenham rumours




Kyril Louis-Dreyfus sends message to Sunderland fans following promotion



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Sunderland chairman Kyril Louis-Dreyfus has praised all connected to the club after they secured promotion back to the Championship.

After a tough campaign, which involved the owner making the bold call to sack Lee Johnson and bring in Alex Neil, the Black Cats managed to come through the play-offs after seeing off Sheffield Wednesday and then beating Wycombe 2-0 at Wembley.

The boss managed to bring everyone together at a crucial part of the season, with the fans fully behind the former Norwich City chief.

And, speaking to the club’s media, Louis-Dreyfus sent a message thanking the players, staff and particularly the support as Sunderland prepare for life back in the Championship.

I would like to thank all our fans around the world that have continued to support our club throughout what has been a difficult few years. Saturday was for you and together we achieved our goal.

I commend our players and first-team staff for a great season and also thank all of our employees, who work so hard every day and give everything for the club. Without you, this success would not have been possible.”

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Simon Mignolet

The verdict

It’s nice for Sunderland fans to hear from Louis-Dreyfus and he is understandably very proud of all involved with this promotion push.

As he says, it’s a real team effort from everyone at the club, but the main credit obviously has to go to Neil and the players who delivered in the high-pressure play-off games.

Now, an exciting summer awaits, and Louis-Dreyfus needs to back Neil in the market to ensure the squad is ready to go again next season.

Thoughts? Let us know in the comments below.



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Dejphon Chansiri provides insight to Sheffield Wednesday’s summer transfer plans




With expectation levels expected to mount once the new League One season gets underway, Darren Moore will be hoping it is second-time lucky with Sheffield Wednesday in the third tier. 

The Owls were defeated in their semi-finals of the play-offs, with Sunderland progressing to the final, before eventually succeeding at Wembley. 

With the summer transfer window right around the corner, the recruitment at Hillsborough will be well underway, with those at the club likely to be monitoring several different markets. 

Owner Dejphon Chansiri has provided an insight into the club’s recruitment plan, suggesting that the UK market is not the sole option, telling Yorkshire Live: “Our approach is the same every season. We look in the UK market first before looking at options abroad.

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“We look to see who is available and will fit in with the team, it depends what we need. We will try to bring in the best players whether they are permanent or on loan.”

The verdict 

The Owls will be looking to strengthen to ensure that they avoid the lottery that is the play-offs, with three of the last seasons ending with play-off heartbreak. 

Possessing a strong core to the squad, Moore will be hoping to keep some of his more integral first-teamers, with the likes of Barry Bannan, Lee Gregory and Josh Windass likely to attract attention. 

Prioritising recruiting in the UK first, if the Owls still seek further additions, then it appears that they will cast their eyes elsewhere. 

It remains to be seen if it will come to that as Wednesday prepare for another campaign in League One, and naturally, fans will be setting their sights on the top two. 



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