Football news LIVE: Jude Bellingham transfer latest as Liverpool, Man City and Real Madrid hover,… – The Sun

  • September 28, 2022

LIONEL MESSI will decide on his future after the upcoming World Cup – but has so far had no offers from any club. 
The Argentine star left Barcelona to sign a two-year deal with Paris Saint-Germain in 2021.
But with that contract expiring next summer, it remains unclear where he will be playing his football in the 2023-24 season. 
And SunSport can reveal the Argentine hero currently has no concrete options.
Meanwhile, England ace Jude Bellingham, 19, remains one of Europe's hottest properties with the Borussia Dortmund man set to spark a tug of war between Real Madrid, Liverpool and Manchester City for his signature.
Manchester United and Chelsea also remain keen to sign the former Birmingham City man.
How to get free bets on football – the 17 best bookies to claim rewards and bonuses
Stay up to date with all the latest from around the grounds…
Kante back to training
N'Golo Kante has returned to Chelsea training six weeks after suffering a hamstring injury against Tottenham.
The Frenchman limped out of the 2-2 draw on August 14 and hasn't played since.
His return is a timely boost for the Blues, who play NINE games in a gruelling October.
Morning football fans
Manchester United and Tottenham could bid for "£27million bargain" keeper Jan Oblak in January.
Atletico Madrid are reportedly ready to cash in on their Slovenia hero, 27.
 Borussia Dortmund's England midfielder Jude Bellingham has been described as a "great fit" for United.
But Chelsea and Liverpool are still thought to be even more serious contenders to land the 19-year-old, albeit next summer 
Arsenal could renew their interest in Roma striker Tammy Abraham.
That's because boss Mikel Arteta wants back-up for in-form Gabriel Jesus.
But Serbia superstar Dusan Vlahovic seems intent  on staying at Juventus, despite being linked to Arsenal and other Prem giants.
Former England, Manchester City, Everotn and Aston Villa midfielder Fabian Delph has retired from playing aged 32 due to injury problems.
Fitness wise, Arsenal have concerns over EIGHT players for Saturday's top-three Prem derby at home to Spurs.
And England frontman Marcus Rashford is expected to return for United's trip to neighbours Man City on Sunday.
Gareth: Maguire must prove himself
Gareth Southgate delivered a World Cup warning to defender Harry Maguire after his Germany nightmare.
The England manager, set to name his 26-man squad for Qatar on November 10, made it clear he needs under-fire Maguire to get his confidence back and play more games for Manchester United.
Southgate continues to back centre-half Maguire — who picked up a thigh injury in a nightmare game against Germany on Monday — but is concerned about his lack of game time for United.
Crocked Maguire could now be unavailable for a couple more United games and the national boss said: “I know everybody says Harry is important to me but he’s important to us. It’s us — it’s not me.
“Why do we pick him? Because he’s one of the players who gives us the best chance of winning. So really, we should all be wanting a Harry Maguire that’s playing regularly and playing with confidence.
“That applies to, of course, quite a few players but he’s the one that everything lands on, which must be a tough space for him really. But he’s showing tremendous character.
“I think he has got the character to get over this because he’s a boy that has been from Sheffield United to Hull City. He’s not one where everything has been smooth.
“Sometimes you get lads who, in the early part of their career, haven’t had to handle adversity and when it hits them, it’s harder to cope with. He’s like most of us really, in that he’s had lots of hurdles — and that shapes your character.”
Rashford winning fight to face City
EXCLUSIVE: Marcus Rashford is winning his battle to be fit for Sunday’s Manchester derby, writes NEIL CUSTIS and RICHARD MORIARTY.
The Manchester United forward has been out since suffering a hamstring injury during the club’s 3-1 win over table-toppers Arsenal.
Rashford scored twice in that game and netted in the 2-1 win over bitter rivals Liverpool.
It was proof that he was finally back on form after a difficult year.
But the injury saw him miss United’s subsequent Europa League games against Real Sociedad and FC Sheriff.
It also made him unavailable for the England squad. He was expected to be called up after his upturn in performances.
But Rashford, 24, is now training again — and feels ready for the Etihad showdown.
Shaw 'agrees' with Man Utd dropping him
Luke Shaw expects to again be only a Manchester United sub in Sunday's derby at City – and even BACKS Erik ten Hag's decision.
Left-back Shaw bagged the opening goal when playing all of England's 3-3 home draw with Germany last night.
But he's still out of favour at Old Trafford behind Tyrell Malacia after being axed following their poor start to the season.
And he said: “It’s understandable, and I even agree.
"The start of the season wasn’t good enough and he had to make changes. I fully accept that.
“The only thing I can do is train hard and wait for opportunities, whether that’s in cup games or the Premier League.
"Whatever I play in, I just have to be ready — and then play at the standard I should be at.”
And he believes Ten Hag still rates him.
He added: “I think Ten Hag knows my qualities, he knows what I’m capable of and we’ve had chats.”
Partey replacement rated a priority
Mikel Arteta has been urged to find a replacement for Arsenal's injury-plagued midfielder Thomas Partey.
The table-topping Gunners can choose from Partey, Granit Xhaka, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Mohamed Elneny.
But boss Arteta reportedly made THREE approaches for Aston Villa's Douglas Luiz in the summer.
Former Villa attacker Gabby Agbonlahor told Football Insider: “Arsenal might look in January and think, ‘you know what, we’re third in the league, we’re second in the league, we’ve got a really good chance this season of finishing in the top four’ and they will have to go out and get one.
“Their fans were very upset at the end of the window when they didn’t get one.
“Thomas Partey is always getting injuries, he’s very injury prone. Xhaka’s been outstanding, Lokonga is still up and coming but they need one more.
“It was strange that they didn’t fill that position. Especially when they know Thomas Partey is not going to play a lot of games this season because he’s always injured."
Al-Hilal insist Cristiano DIDN'T reject them
Cristiano Ronaldo "didn't reject" a summer transfer to Al-Hilal, according to the club's president.
And he revealed the two parties were heading into the final stages of negotiations before the mega-money move collapsed.
But Fahad ben Nafel insisted it was not Ronaldo who pulled the plug. Instead, he claimed a transfer ban placed on the Saudi Arabian side proved the critical blow.
Nafel told the Thamanya YouTube channel: “Yes, we negotiated with Ronaldo. The problem was not in the money or the principle, Al-Hilal is able to bring in the stars of the world.
"But it was in the decision of the Sports Arbitration Centre that prevented us from registering the players.
"We did not stop negotiating with the players despite the decision to ban, but we were delaying entering the final stage of the negotiations until the ban was lifted.”
Ronaldo, 37, looked on course to quit United in the summer after the club failed to qualify for the Champions League with just 12 months left on his Old Trafford contract.
He was linked with Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, Bayern Munich and Napoli but they all opted against trying to sign the five-time Ballon d'Or winner.
Jude 'fits' United
Jude Bellingham would be a "great fit" for Manchester United and soon a key man.
That's the view of transfer insider Dean Jones as United reportedly vie Chelsea and Liverpool for Borussia Dortmund's England midfielder.
Jones reckons the 19-year-old has the confidence to assert himself under Erik ten Hag at Old Trafford.
But it's Chelsea who could be more likely to launch a £100million-plus offer for Bellingham in the summer.
Shock as fan hurls banana at Richarlison
Tottenham striker Richarlison was racially abused after scoring in Brazil's 5-1 win over Tunisia today as a fan hurled a banana at him.
The ex-Everton hero put his side 2-1 up with a fine finish and celebrated in front of the Parc des Princes crowd.
But one supporter threw a banana that landed near Richarlison's feet on the pitch.
Manchester United midfielder Fred kicked the fruit off the pitch before looking up to the crowd.
Richarlison and his Brazil team-mates had put out an anti-racism message prior to kick-off.
The team posed next to a banner that read: "Without our black players, we wouldn't have stars on our shirts."
The statement came in response to Vinicius Jr twice being racially abused in the build-up to Real Madrid's game against Atletico Madrid nine days ago.
Delph retires aged 32
Former England midfielder Fabian Delph has announced his retirement from football aged just 32.
The ex-Manchester City title-winner struggled with injuries towards the latter end of his career and has decided to call it quits after leaving Everton in the summer.
Delph made just 35 league appearances for the Toffees in three years and has been without a club since departing Goodison Park. So he has made the decision to hand up his boots and is grateful for the career he has had.
Delph wrote on Instagram: "So today I announce my retirement with nothing but happiness and gratitude for what this beautiful game has given me.
"Massive shout-out to my family, friends, players and staff from the amazing clubs I have been fortunate enough to represent as well as the support I have had from the fans."
Delph won 20 England caps but his biggest achievement was winning the Premier League with City in 2018 and 2019. He was a part of Pep Guardiola's centurion side in 2017-18, making 22 appearances and scoring one goal.
Prior to that Delph made 134 appearances for Aston Villa after joining from Leeds.
Now Maguire's injured…
Harry Maguire is set to be sidelined for two two weeks in another blow to the struggling defender.
The Manchester United man, 29, picked up a thigh injury during England's 3-3 draw with Germany.
He played on despite the issue to see out the full 90 minutes at Wembley on Monday but was later spotted limping through the mixed zone.
And the extent of the damage to his leg means Maguire will be unavailable for selection for a short while.
United face rivals Manchester City at the Etihad on Sunday and then a double header with Omonia in the Europa League sandwiches a trip to Everton on October 9.
However, Maguire has been left out of recent starting XIs for the Red Devils anyway with Erik ten Hag preferring "leader" Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez as his centre-half partnership.
The England defender endured a rough evening last night.
He was booed by a section of the home fans before kick-off and then was at fault for both goals as Germany opened up a 2-0 lead.
And to top it off, he sustained the muscle problem late on.
Three Lions' skipper Harry Kane said: “H had a pretty decent injury there at the end and he played another five or ten minutes on almost one leg, great character from him, really proud of him for that.”
Hend of the road for Qatar
David Seaman believes Dean Henderson will NOT be one of England's three World Cup keepers.
The Manchester United keeper, on loan at Nottingham Forest, was an unused sub against Italy and Germany over the past week.
And former Three Lions and Arsenal stopper Seaman believes Nick Pope and Aaron Ramsey will go to Qatar behind No1 choice Jordan Pickford.
He told FootballDaily: "It’s a tough one, but looking at it and the experience that everyone has got, I think that unfortunately, Dean might miss out.
"He's not made a lot of appearances for England, it's his first season back in with Nottingham Forest. I would imagine he's the one that misses out.
"I say fingers crossed no one gets injured because you never know, there's still a few months to go before the World Cup and you never know what might happen.
"But I think in Aaron and Nick, you've got two guys there that are really close in being number two."
Harry can talk through his problems
Struggling Harry Maguire should visit a psychologist to boost his confidence, according to Manchester United legend Gary Neville.
But Nev wants the Old Trafford centre-back to START England's World Cup campaign as first-choice despite giving away two goals in Germany's 3-3 draw at Wembley..
The Sky Sports pundit told BBC Radio 5 Live: “I’ve been there myself.
“I gave away two really bad goals against Vasco de Gama in a World Club Championships in 2000, then six months later went on to have a horrible Euros tournament for England in Belgium and Holland.
“Harry is going through a difficult moment. I felt for him.
"But he’s a good solid character, he’s got a good family and people around him at Manchester United who will try and help him.
“It’s a tough period for Harry, there’s no getting away from that. But there’s nothing you can do other than show up, try your best and not give in.
“At some point, his form will return because he has been an excellent player for United at times and England.
“He has to go to the World Cup. England haven’t got a massive pool of centre-backs for a start. Harry’s done very well for England and Gareth Southgate.”
Maguire must Stam by and then deliver
Jaap Stam has told Harry Maguire he must be ready when – not if – he gets the chance to reclaim his Manchester Unite place.
Centre-back Maguire is under fire for costing two goals in England's 3-3 draw with Germany yesterday, having been dropped by United for the past four Prem matches.
And former Old Trafford defensive powerhouse Stam praised the Red Devils' new pairing of Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez – while urging Maguire to remain positive.
He told the Manchester Evening News: “They’ve got a very good partnership – it’s promising
"With Martinez, he’s had a very good couple of games, although you need to do that across a full season.
You need to play steady for 60 games. If you achieve that, then we can judge him, instead of playing for five games. He is a quality player.
"When he [Maguire] gets his minutes, because you’re going to have injuries and suspensions, he needs to use that opportunity to step in and show himself.
"The other two are doing well and that’s how it goes in football. You need to train hard and stay on your toes.
"If you’re not ready to step in, somebody else will play. That’s how you raise the bar and the level of football."

Rad-ical deal for DAZN
Streaming giant DAZN has completed its takeover of Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani’s Eleven Sports, writes MARTIN LIPTON.
The deal, which sees the Elland Road chief given shares and a place on the DAZN board, expands the streamer’s reach.
DAZN’s British-American owner Len Blavatnik invested £3.7bn of his own money into the company in February.
The agreement includes the acquisition of Eleven-owned media business Team Whistle.
World Cup ticket chance
England fans enthused by the comeback against Germany get a final chance to buy World Cup tickets today.
Match tickets are available in all price categories with fans allowed to buy up to six tickets per match and 60 across the tournament.
Tickets for group stage matches range from £53 to £168 although seats for the final start at £508 and rise to £1,352.
Supporters can buy their tickets via the Foifa website on a first come first served basis from 10am although further seats will be for sale if available throughout the tournament.
World Cup ticket chance
England fans enthused by the comeback against Germany get a final chance to buy World Cup tickets today.
Match tickets are available in all price categories with fans allowed to buy up to six tickets per match and 60 across the tournament.
Tickets for group stage matches range from £53 to £168 although seats for the final start at £508 and rise to £1,352.
Supporters can buy their tickets via the Foifa website on a first come first served basis from 10am although further seats will be for sale if available throughout the tournament.
Reece reveals Lions' support for Harry
Reece James says nobody in the England camp doubts Harry Maguire’s “quality”.
Manchester United centre-half Maguire was under pressure heading into back-to-back Nations League games against Italy and Germany – and his performances did nothing to placate his critics.
Chelsea defender James started next to Maguire in defence in both games and says the squad are still right behind him.
He added: “When you are playing and make a mistake you are experienced enough to know you made a mistake, so you don’t need to be told.
“Harry has not been playing too much this season. He has been finding his rhythm, we know the quality he has.”
Dusn't want to join
Dusan Vlahovic appears to have dampened talk of a shock switch to Arsenal in January.
The Gunners have been linked with a move for the Juventus striker or Roma's England frontman Tammy Abraham.
But it's claimed Serbia superstar Vlahovic, 22, has made it clear he wants to stay with Juve,
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is thought to want another proven forward to support ex-Manchester City ace Gabriel Jesus.
Utd 'eye £27m Oblak bargain'
Manchester United could pounce for Atletico Madrid keeper Jan Oblak – possibly even in January.
Fichajes reckon the Spanish giants might be ready to cash in on the Slovenia superstar for £27million in January.
United and Tottenham are amongst the clubs strongly linked to the 27-year-old.
Old Trafford boss Erik ten Hag is thought to have one eye on finding a long-term successor to David de Gea.
Drop Raheem for Marcus
David James says England would benefit from replacing Chelsea’s Raheem Sterling with Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford in their starting line-up for the World Cup.
The retired 53-cap Three Lions keeper, 52, believes Rash is finally showing his true potential for his club and is ready to help spearhead a successful campaign in Qatar.
James told the Games Cabin: “I’d be looking to get Marcus Rashford in England’s starting XI because this season he’s producing the form that Manchester United and England fans have been waiting for.
“I’d possibly have Marcus Rashford in there instead of Raheem Sterling.
“Phil Foden, Marcus Rashford and Harry Kane would be my preferred front three, but it would be a tight call as Mason Mount is one of my favourite footballers.”
Wembley Poch watch
Job-hunting Mauricio Pochettino watched England's 3-3 thriller with Germany at Wembley as he targets a managerial return.
The former Tottenham boss has been out of work since leaving Paris Saint-Germain on July 5.
He was linked with the vacancies at Manchester United and Chelsea but remains unemployed.
And now the 50-year-old is the third-favourite to take over from Gareth Southgate as the next England boss.
So it certainly raised eyebrows when news broke the Argentine was in attendance at Wembley on Monday.
The Telegraph report Poch was not invited by the FA but decided to go to the thrilling Nations League draw with assistant Jesus Perez and a friend because he is currently in London.
Wilshere playing talent is still a 'joke'
Arsenal starlet Kido Taylor-Hart says it's a "joke" how good Jack Wilshere still is as a player – after the former England midfielder returned to the Emirates as a coach.
Striker Taylor-Hart, 19, also praised the 30-year-old coaching ability.
Wilshere retired from playing in July after a career beset by injuries.
He's best known for his spell at Arsenal from 2008-2018, during which he won 34 caps.
But Taylor-Hart told The Beautiful Game Podcast how strong an influence Wilshere has been on the new generation of Gunners.
The-ex West ham and Bournemouth creator initially went back to the Emirates to keep fit by training with the youth teams.
And Taylor-Hart said: “He’s a very good coach.
"When he came back originally he was playing with the 23s, he was training with us like every day. He’s a joke, his talent is a joke.
"The way he works is too quick, he’ll see a pass before it’s even there, it’s crazy.”
Jose 'will be f***ing mad' at FA verdict, Fergie laughed
Laughing Alex Ferguson claimed Jose Mourinho would be "going f***ing mad" after the Manchester United legend dodged an  FA fine.
Ex-FA 'sleazebuster' Graham Bean has revealed his extraordinary tactics when he represented Fergie AGAINST football chiefs.
Fergie labelled Neale Barry's performance "sinister" after the ref failed to give United a penalty when Andy O'Brien challenged Alan Smith down during a 2-1 home win in April 2005.
Stamford Bridge counterpart Mourinho had been fined £5,000 a month earlier for suggesting to Chelsea TV that United players "cheated" in the Blues' Carling Cup semi-final triumph in January that year.
But when the FA dealt with Fergie over his Barry claims in July 2005 he was merely warned over his future conduct.
Now Bean has told The Athletic he tried to unsettle his former employers the FA by writing to them saying Fergie felt he was "the subject of a campaign of harassment" from football authorities.
Bean admitted his aim was to "muddy the waters by lobbing in this grenade… a tactic I used a number of times".
He also hinted the FA were almost in awe of Fergie as they treated him like the "top dog" at hearings.
World Cup odds bash Harry
It is now odds-on for Harry Maguire to be dropped for England’s World Cup opener against Iran.
Ladbrokes are offering 8-11 for the Manchester United to not be in the Three Lions starting XI for their first game in Qatar on October 21.
Maguire drew criticism for defensive mistakes in last night’s 3-3 with Germany at Wembley but has been repeatedly backed by his national team boss Gareth Southgate.
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