Inter Milan fans celebrate title, Real Madrid 'have money for Haaland', Messi UPDATE – Man City, Chelsea transfer news

Inter Milan fans celebrate title, Real Madrid 'have money for Haaland', Messi UPDATE – Man City, Chelsea transfer news

05/03/2021

INTER MILAN fans have taken to the streets in Italy to celebrate their sides historic Serie A title.

Antonio Conte bagged his third Italian title as Inter ended Juventus' winning run stretching back to 2012.

Meanwhile, Erling Haaaland's transfer saga rolls on with Real Madrid, Manchester United and Manchester City reportedly interested.

And Lionel Messi could offered a TEN YEAR deal with Barcelona.

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Follow ALL of the latest news and updates below…

  • William Pugh

    STATE OF THE ART

    Santi Cazorla has backed Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta as the “right man” to lead his former club forward despite this year’s “inconsistent” campaign.

    Cazorla spent six years at the Emirates following his arrival from Malaga in 2012 and became close friends with Arteta while they both played under legendary manager Arsene Wenger.

    Cazorla told uefa.com: “I think he’s the right man to take the club forward. It’s difficult to follow a period like Wenger’s – the club has to adapt to another kind of football, another philosophy, another vision of football.

    “He’s got a clear idea of how he wants his team to play, they’re in the semi-finals and they did well in the FA Cup [last season].

    “They have been pretty inconsistent but you’ve got to give him time and I think they’re convinced that Mikel can get a lot out of the squad and achieve big things.

    “I’m great friends with him and whatever good happens to him and the club I’d be happy for them because I’m a ‘Gunner’.”

    Credit: Mark Robinson – The Sun
  • William Pugh

    REDS' RESPOND

    Manchester United have released a statement in response to Sunday's fan protests at Old Trafford and refuted the idea supporters were allowed into the stadium by club staff.

    It read: "Following events yesterday, while many fans wanted to exercise their right to protest and express their opinion peacefully, some were intent on disrupting the team’s preparation and the game itself, as evidenced by activity at the Lowry Hotel and at the stadium.

    "Reports in mainstream and social media that protesters were able to access the stadium and pitch via a gate opened by club staff are completely incorrect.

    "After breaking through barriers and security on the forecourt, some protestors climbed the gates at the end of the Munich tunnel, then forced access to a side door in the stand, before opening an external door that let others through to the concourse area and the pitch.

    "A second breach occurred when a protestor smashed the door of a disability access lift, enabling a group to enter the stand. The majority of our fans have and will condemn criminal damage, along with any violence towards club staff, police or other fans, and these now become a police matter.

    "The club has no desire to see peaceful protestors punished, but will work with the police to identify those involved in criminal activity, and will also issue its own sanctions to any season ticket holder or member identified, per the published sanctions policy."

  • William Pugh

    FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE

    Russian goalkeeper Elvira Todua has admitted it is ‘normal’ for women to have sex before matches.

    Some men’s teams are banned from doing so by their coaches, including famously Fabio Capello’s England during the 2010 World Cup. But that’s not the case for female footballers.

    Todua, 35, told YouTube channel Comment Show: “It is normal that women can [have sex before a game] while, for men, I know that many coaches have prohibited it.”

    The stopper also revealed that she and her team-mates are protected by their contracts, if they get pregnant. She added: “Our contracts stipulate that the club is obliged to pay in case of maternity. We have that clause in our contracts at CSKA, but it is not like that everywhere. I know that, in other clubs, contracts are rescinded in the case of pregnancy.”

    Todua is currently in her second stint at CSKA Moscow in her native Russia, re-joining in 2017 after a brief spell the year before. She is also a stalwart for the national team.

    In fact, she earned her 100th cap for Russia last month, featuring against Portugal in their Uefa Women’s Euro 2022 qualifier.

    Credit: Getty
  • William Pugh

    BUZZ KYL

    Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe limped into Le Bourget Airport this morning as his team headed to England.

    Despite appearing injured, the French sensation DID join his team-mates on their flight to Manchester.

    Mauricio Pochettino‘s men travel to the North West requiring a huge performance, after losing their Champions League semi-final first leg 2-1 to Manchester City last week.

    And they face a race against time to have their talisman fit to help them. Mbappe, 22, felt pain in his right calf during last week’s first-leg. And while it initially wasn’t thought to be too bad, the forward missed out on PSG’s 2-1 victory over RC Lens at the weekend.

    He has reportedly not fully trained since, but was included in PSG’s travelling party. Pochettino, 49, gave an upbeat update yesterday, saying: “I am optimistic, I still am.

    “We think he will be there. We will make a decision before the match but I am optimistic.”

  • William Pugh

    EUR IN WITH A CHANCE

    Up to 9,500 fans will be allowed into the Europa League final, Uefa have confirmed.

    Local authorities in Gdansk, Poland have announced they plan to allow up to 25 per cent of the stadium's capacity to be filled for the May 26 showpiece. Manchester United look set to be there after a 6-2 first leg win over Roma while Arsenal have to overcome a 2-1 loss to Villareal to make it.

    Uefa said: "Ticket sales have now started exclusively on UEFA.com and will run until 14.00 CEST on Friday 7 May 2021. Supporters from abroad will have to comply with border entry restrictions and requirements that will be in force at the time of the final as no exemptions will be granted to ticket holders.

    "Access to the stadium will be granted in line with the applicable local legislation, which is to be confirmed by the local authorities during this week and may include the need for proof of a vaccine or a negative COVID-19 test result.

    "UEFA will reimburse the full price of the ticket to successful buyers, should a reduction to the stadium capacity be announced by the local authorities at a later stage.

    "For the sales process on UEFA.com, tickets will not be sold on a first-come, first-served basis. Instead, a ballot will be conducted to allocate the tickets once the application period has ended."

  • William Pugh

    IN THE RED – LATEST

    The FA has confirmed it has opened an official investigation into the 'violent and criminal' invasion of Old Trafford. And the Premier league weighed in by slamming the 'minority' of fans whose conduct can 'have no justification'.

    Manchester United’s crunch clash with Liverpool on Sunday was postponed after more than 200 United fans stormed into the stadium and congregated on the pitch. Camera equipment, balls and other items were stolen and wrecked, with some invaders climbing onto the goals and nets.

    And in the FA’s first public statement on the incident, Wembley chiefs attempted to demonstrate how the Old Trafford scenes could destroy much of the positive impact of fan power deployed to see off the European Super League.

    United’s part in the Super League plot appeared to be the straw that broke the camel’s back after more than 15 years of protests against the Glazer family and their ownership of the club.

    An FA spokesperson said: "The fans have played a vital and impactful role in helping to stop the European Super League from happening, and we understand their frustrations.

    “However, we cannot condone the violent and criminal behaviour that took place before the scheduled Manchester United vs Liverpool match, which the FA is now investigating."

  • Thomas Blow

    APPY DAYS

    Cheltenham defender Chris Hussey is looking for an Appy end to the season.

    The 32-year-old scored the equaliser last week that earned Cheltenham automatic promotion to League One.

    And now the goal-scoring defender is gearing up to launch his new app which helps independent businesses, shoppers and grass-roots football teams.

    Hussey said: "During the lockdowns, I was thinking about how I could help local communities because loads of businesses were closing down.

    "You could see it on the local high street and on the news, plus there were the challenges that I knew about.

    "Grass-roots football was struggling and that's important to me as it is where I started my football journey.

    "I wanted to look at who I could help and how I could help them as I was aware of how it was affecting people's mental health.

    "I have learned a lot about it through my own mental health problems, so I wanted to find a way of combining lots of things that mean a lot to me."

    Click here to read the exclusive interview.

  • Thomas Blow

    NEV-ER IN DOUBT

    Ex-Manchester United defender Gary Neville returned a protester's fist-bump inside Old Trafford yesterday.

    It came as the Red Devils icon called for the Glazer family to do the 'honourable' thing and sell up.

  • Thomas Blow

    VAR BOOST FOR BLUES

    Chelsea have received a major boost after Raphael Varane was ruled out of the Real Madrid squad for their Champions League clash.

    The Blues secured a 1-1 draw in the Spanish capital last week in the first-leg of the semi-final showdown.

    However, Los Blancos are now facing a defensive crisis going into the return game after their French World Cup winning centre-half suffered a groin injury.

    The 28-year-old was replaced at half-time during Madrid’s 2-0 victory over Osasuna on Saturday.

    Zinedine Zidane had been praying that the star, who has been linked with a transfer to Chelsea, would manage to shake off the problem for their must-win showdown at Stamford Bridge.

    However, now he will be forced to sit and watch from the sidelines after the club confirmed it was bad news.

  • Thomas Blow

    CHAMP AND CHUMPS

    Commentator Jon Champion was bizarrely cut off while passionately criticising the Glazers' ownership of Manchester United on US telly yesterday.

    Thousands of Man United fans protested at Old Trafford, with some even getting inside the Theatre of Dreams – leading to the match being called off.

    Here's the moment Champion was silenced…

  • Thomas Blow

    OLE IN

    Borussia Dortmund have slashed their asking price for long-term Manchester United target Jadon Sancho to less than £80million ahead of the summer transfer window.

    According to SPORT, Dortmund have dropped their financial demands significantly and thus Sancho may be available for a fee in the region of £74-78m.

    Credit: AFP
  • Thomas Blow

    WHAT A COU

    There is a Brazilian legion at Manchester City, and we're not talking about Ederson, Fernandinho and Gabriel Jesus.

    Fluminense ace Kayky is the latest talent from South America to sign on the dotted line for Pep Guardiola's side.

    And he could be joined by exciting Palmeiras wonderkid Gabriel Veron, who has been linked with both Manchester clubs.

    But, somewhat under the radar, was the signing of Yan Couto – easily done when you understand his nickname is 'The Flash' in 2020.

    Click here to read more about Couto.

  • Thomas Blow

    FANDEMONIUM

    Inter Milan and Ajax fans brushed off Covid warnings to cram into the city streets and celebrate their teams' title triumphs.

    Despite club pleas, social distancing was largely ignored as the joyous scenes unfolded.

    Antonio Conte secured their first Serie A crown since Jose Mourinho in 2009-10 and first piece of silverware for a decade when Atalanta drew 1-1 with Sassuolo.

    Ajax, meanwhile, wrapped up Eredivisie crown No.35 in emphatic fashion by dispatching FC Emmen 4-0.

  • Thomas Blow

    GRAC TO SQUARE ONE

    Valencia have sacked former Watford boss Javi Gracia.

    Los Che narrowly lost 3-2 to Barcelona last night, in what would turn out to be Gracia's final game in charge.

    The 2004 LaLiga winners have fallen on hard times of late, having to sell most of their best players last summer – including Ferran Torres and Rodrigo, as well as captain Dani Parejo.

    Gracia was appointed in July to steady the ship, after both Albert Celades and Marcelino were sacked during last season.

    The 51-year-old steered his new side to an unremarkable 11 wins from 38 matches in charge – but did manage to keep them away from the relegation zone.

    Los Che currently sit 14th in the LaLiga table, six points above the drop zone with four games left.

  • Thomas Blow

    TUCH AND GO

    Thomas Tuchel is not sure whether Mason Mount will be fit enough to play in Wednesday's Champions League semi-final second leg against Real Madrid.

    Mount, who put together another impressive display for the Blues, was hauled off in the closing stages of Saturday's 2-0 win over Fulham at Stamford Bridge after picking up an apparent back injury.

    The German manager said: "I hope really that Mason is not a big thing and hopefully he can fully recover for Real Madrid.

    "It was my decision, there was not any doctor or physio who told me to take him off.

    "But I saw him landing hard and it was the moment anyway when we wanted to take him off anyway."

    Credit: PA
  • Thomas Blow

    NOT DONN

    AC Milan have paused contract talks with Gianluigi Donnarumma after a group of ultras confronted the star goalkeeper at the club's training ground.

    Donnarumma's deal with Milan runs out in June and reports suggest that Premier League giants Manchester United as well as Chelsea have been keeping tabs on the 22-year-old.

    Tensions rose on Saturday when a group of hard-line supporters went to the club's Milanello complex to address the situation directly with the Italy star, according to ANSA.

    The fans reportedly ordered Donnarumma not to play against Juventus on Sunday in Turin unless he puts pen to paper on a new contract with the Rossoneri.

    After the incident, Milan legend and technical director Paolo Maldini said the club has paused contract renewal talks with the young shot-stopper until the end of the season.

    Maldini said: "From this moment every single renewal negotiation is frozen until the end of the season, to allow the team to focus solely on the league.

    "In the meantime, we will continue to protect our players as we have always done."

  • Thomas Blow

    FOREVER YOUNG

    Ex-Manchester United skipper Ashley Young is reportedly 'in talks' with old club Watford over a shock return to the Premier League from Inter Milan.

    The 35-year-old is toasting Inter's Serie A title success after second-place Atalanta's draw at Sassuolo crowned Antonio Conte's men champions with four games to spare.

    The winger turned full-back joined Watford aged ten and made his senior debut as an 18-year-old in 2003.

    He made 107 appearances before leaving for Aston Villa for 2007 but could be heading back to Vicarage Road this summer.

    Transfer guru Fabrizio Romano reports the Hornets have opened talks with Young to bring him back to Hertfordshire as a free agent if he is not offered a new deal at Inter.

  • Thomas Blow

    HAAL OVER

    Borussia Dortmund have claimed Erling Haaland has agreed to stay with them this summer.

    The 20-year-old striker is one of the most-coveted players on the planet thanks to his incredible goalscoring exploits in Germany.

    Manchester United, Chelsea, Man City plus Real Madrid and Barcelona were all linked with a £150m-rated transfer swoop.

    Sporting director Sebastian Kehl said: "I understand that Erling Haaland will play for Borussia Dortmund in the new season.

    "Erling totally agrees. I see him every day and I can say that he completely identifies with the club."

    Credit: Getty
  • Thomas Blow

    RON A ROLL

    Cristiano Ronaldo's brace against Udinese kept Juventus' Champions League hopes alive on a night the Old Lady was forced to hand over her crown.

    Juve saw their nine-year reign as Serie A champions end on Sunday when Atalanta drew 1-1 at Sassuolo, a result that effectively led to Inter Milan winning their first Scudetto in 11 years.

    But that doesn't mean Andrea Pirlo's men don't have something to fight for as they still need to qualify for next season's Champions League.

    And their hopes are still very much alive thanks to Ronaldo's performance at the Dacia Arena.

    The star forward led Juventus to a 2-1 victory over Udinese and proved what a difference maker he still is despite his advanced age of 36.

  • Thomas Blow

    NEY CHANCE

    PSG sporting director Leonardo appears less than confident of agreeing a new contract with Neymar.

    The Brazilian will have just one year remaining on his current deal come the end of the season.

    Neymar, 29, appears happy at the club, having said as much prior to PSG's 2-1 Champions League semi-final first-leg defeat to Manchester City last week.

    But amid reports of Barcelona rekindling their long-term interest in bringing him back, Neymar's desire to return to Catalonia has reportedly returned.

    Quizzed about PSG's No10's future over the weekend, Leonardo merely said: "You have to see everything calmly."

    Credit: Rex
  • Thomas Blow

    VALENCIA 2 BARCELONA 3

    Lionel Messi missed a penalty but bagged a double as Barcelona beat Valencia 3-2 to keep alive the most exciting LaLiga title race in years.

    Former Arsenal defender Gabriel Paulista put the hosts ahead early in the second half.

    But Messi scored either side of an Antoine Griezmann goal to turn the game on its head.

    Carlos Soler's superb late strike set up a tense finale, but Valencia could not find an equaliser and Barcelona kept the pressure on league leaders Atletico Madrid ahead of the showdown between the two teams at the Nou Camp next weekend.

    Credit: EPA
  • Thomas Blow

    DRONE WARS

    A footballer destroyed a drone carrying the rival team’s flag after it flew on to the pitch two minutes into a derby game.

    Midfielder Pablo Perez stamped on its camera before hurling the match ball against it after another player caught hold of it and laid it on the ground by the side of the pitch.

    Here's the astonishing footage…

  • Thomas Blow

    MONACO 2 LYON 3

    Memphis Depay scored one as Lyon won a 3-2 thriller at Monaco in a game that saw FIVE players sent off.

    Tempers boiled over after the final whistle as players and coaching staff from each side pushed and goaded each other in the centre circle.

    That resulted in the referee dishing out four red cards post-match – two apiece for each club.

    The defeat is a huge blow to third-place Monaco’s title aspirations as they now sit four points behind Paris Saint-Germain in second.

    Lille are top the table, but now Lyon are only one point behind Monaco in the race for Champions League qualification.

  • Thomas Blow

    'THE TOTTENHAM WAY'

    Gareth Bale has insisted that he plays well when he's 'happy', after scoring a hat-trick in Tottenham's 4-0 demolition of Sheffield United on Sunday evening.

    Bale told Sky Sports: "Winning always makes everyone happy and gives a winning mentality to the dressing room. It's not going to happen overnight but I feel like we're taking a step in the right direction.

    "Obviously you have to take your chances when they come, and thankfully I had a few tonight. I'm feeling good.

    "As I've said before I just needed to play games and get a run of games and I'm doing that now, so I'm happy and when I'm happy I normally play well.

    "It was a great performance by the team. From the first whistle I felt we were on the front foot and got control of it and played some good football.

    "I feel like we are taking a step in the right direction and playing more like the Tottenham way."

  • Thomas Blow

    IN THE RED

    Manchester United could be slapped with a points deduction or a heavy fine after fans' protests forced the Liverpool game to be postponed.

    The Red Devils were due to host their arch-rivals at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon.

    But a faction of anti-Glazer protesters managed to break into the stadium and got on to the pitch before kick-off, while others barricaded the players in The Lowry Hotel.

    And now the FA are investigating the chaotic scenes to determine what punishment they will hand out.

    Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side currently sit second in the Premier League table on 67 points.

    Leicester are third on 63 with Chelsea in the fourth Champions League spot a further two back.

    The chasing pack of Tottenham (56), West Ham (55), Liverpool (54) and Everton (52) still hold hopes of creeping into the top four.

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