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EPL

From Roma’s reject to Liverpool’s legend, the story behind Alisson’s rise to stardom

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Alisson Becker

Liverpool are through to the knockout stage of this season’s Champions League competition, thanks to Alisson Becker’s heroic displays against Napoli last night.

Prior to the encounter, the Reds needed a 1-0 victory over the Serie A giants to progress out of the group.

After many missed chances, the Merseyside outfits scored a very important goal via Mohammed Salah who had already missed a glorious opportunity to put the home side ahead in the first half of the encounter.

All of Liverpool’s efforts to double their lead were unproductive, instead, it was Napoli who came close to grabbing an all-important equalizer.

Arkadiusz Milik almost found the back of the net from close range, but Alisson Becker’s mighty hands were enough to prevent the former Ajax striker from sailing through to the bottom corner.

Alisson’s Journey to greatness

The 26-year-old goalie started his career in 2002 at the age of 10 when he joined Inter Milan’s academy.

The Brazilian progressed through the ranks until he made his first-team debut when he was 21 years old.

At first, he was a backup to Muriel but he began to feature more constantly with the Serie A giants as time goes on.

Alisson had 100 appearances for the Ammazurris in all competitions before he joined Roma.

Roma reject Alisson in 2015

Despite Juventus interest in his signature, the Brazilian international decided to join Roma in 2015 but the Serie A side rejected Alisson’s ‘come and get me’ plea.

Walter Sabatini who was Roma manager in 2015 failed to complete Roma’s move for the goalkeeper due to some crises related to EU qualification.

After one season, Alisson’s longtime dream eventually come true as he was signed by Roma in 2016. He went on to appear in just 37 matches after two seasons.

Liverpool opened the door of greatness to the goaltender

With just 37 matches, the goalie was able to capture Klopp’s attention with some important match-winning saves.

The Reds were in talks with Roma for his services but the Serie A side were reluctant to let go of their inspirational, first-choice goaltender

It took the Reds to break the world record before they could force Roma into sanctioning his move to Anfield. The Reds paid €72m for his signature during the summer transfer window.

Allison become Anfield’s newfound hero

The goalie’s rise to stardom happened within a short period of time, though, he passed through some career-threatening challenges and rejection.

His switch to the Anfield stadium was marred by the huge amount received by Roma on his signature.

However, the Reds are presently enjoying the services they are getting from the netminder. He has been wonderful at the back of the park since the start of this campaign.

At 26, Liverpool are yet to reap half of their reward for spending big on the Brazilian star, who has become a mainstay in Klopp’s starting lineup and even in the League.

It won’t be surprising if Alisson become the first Brazilian goalkeeper to win PFA goalkeeper of the season

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EPL

How United plan to offload Romelu Lukaku

Aiyeku Timothy

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lukaka chelsea manchester united

There are feelers that interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is making moves to have Belgium international Romelu Lukaku leave the club in the coming summer window.

Romelu Lukaku is one of the few players that have failed to impress under the new interim manager and that seem to be getting him upset with speculations that they will not work together in the coming season, should Ole Gunnar Solskjaer remain in charge.

Latest report hints that the Red Devils are interested in a swap deal to have Romelu Lukaku join Italian Serie A outfit Inter Milan so that they can boost their chances of landing Mauro Icardi.

The Red Devils are keen on the signature of the Inter Milan forward with suggestions that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is more interested in working with him than with Romelu Lukaku.

Mauro Icardi who has established himself at the San Siro was not looking forward to parting ways with the Italian giants until recent happenings where it was announced by the club on the social media that he is no longer the club’s captain.

This is a piece of good news for the Red Devils as they hope they can make it happen by offering Romelu Lukaku to the Italia outfit in the deal.

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EPL

How Ed Woodward pans to transform United into champions

Aiyeku Timothy

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ed woodward

It is understood that Manchester United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward is bent on transforming the Red Devils into champions by overhauling the squad, starting from the summer transfer window.

The intention is to ensure that the club stops being a struggling team to becoming champions by winning league titles, something that was last experienced under legendary boss Alex Ferguson.

It is understood that the first process begins with appointing a new permanent manager following the sack of Jose Mourinho last year December. Although, Ed Woodward is in the dilemma of giving the opportunity to interim boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to take over or moving in for a new and more experienced manager.

The fans have insisted that the former Red Devils forward be giving the opportunity to continue on a permanent basis after impressing with wins and returning the club back to the top-four spot to qualify for the Champions League next season.

United have therefore lined up former Real Madrid boss, Zinedine Zidane, Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino and former Chelsea boss Antonio Conte as possible managers to take over at the Old Trafford.

Also, there is a will to ensure that Spanish goalkeeper David De Gea commits his future to the club as they are yet to convince him into signing a new deal.

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Chelsea

What United’s FA Cup visit means to Chelsea

Aiyeku Timothy

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Gianfranco Zola

Manchester United will visit the Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea in the FA Cup tie, an attempt to return to winning ways on Monday next week after their defeat to French Ligue 1 outfit Paris Saint Germain within the week.

However, the visit is of big concern for to the West London side with assistant coach Gianfranco Zola claiming that the game will mark the beginning of a crucial run for his side.

Noting that United will be a big challenge for the Blues, Gianfranco Zola stated that his side will be focused on winning the game.

Also, the West London outfit recently saw a 6-0 humiliation Manchester City but they have bounced back with a win against Malmo in the Europe League.

United have seen their unbeaten run across all competitions under new interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ended by the French Ligue 1 outfit but they hope it would continue in the Premier League.

The Red Devils have had their season turned around by the new manager after having a very slow start of the season under former manager Jose Mourinho.

Meanwhile, a win for United will hand them hope to win a title this season after supposedly losing out of the Premier League.

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Arsenal

Sanchez’s possible destination will shock Arsenal fans

Aiyeku Timothy

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Sanchez

There are suggestions that Chile international Alexis Sanchez will be heading out of the Old Trafford as his move to Manchester United has not yielded any result.

The former Barcelona playmaker left the North London outfit to the Red Devils in last year to earn about £400,000 but is it now suggested that he took a bad decision and might be set to return back in the summer window.

Alexis Sanchez failed to excel under former manager Jose Mourinho and he is yet to impress under the new interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer which cast doubt over his ability to deliver good performance at the Old Trafford the way he did at the Emirates Stadium.

However, there is suggestion according to former Arsenal player Marc Overmars that Alexis Sanchez could return as it is now glaring that he made a wrong decision to have parted ways with the North London outfit.

During his three-year spell at Arsenal, Alexis Sanchez was one of the most feared players in the Premier League where he scored a total of 80 goals and impressed.

The same cannot be said of the star player at the Old Trafford as he has scored only 5 goals in the 37 appearances that have been handed to him.

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EPL

Man United speaks on agreeing to new David De Gea deal

Aiyeku Timothy

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De Gea

One of Manchester United’s issues is to agree on a new deal with Spanish goalkeeper David De Gea so as to seal his stay at the club for a longer period of time.

David De Gea, who joined the Red Devils in 2011 from Atletico Madrid, has refused to sign a new deal with the club especially when he fell out with the former manager Jose Mourinho before his sack.

Efforts to convince the Spanish stopper to put pen to paper failed until he was forced into a 12 months extension as permitted by a clause in his contract to keep him for another one year.

With the coming of new interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, it was expected that David De Gea reconsider his stance and commit his future to the club but that has not been done which remains a concern to the club.

However, United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward had stated that he hopes the club are able to agree on a new deal with the Spanish man rapidly so as to forge ahead with the cub’s progress.

Meanwhile, the situation with David De Gea is already being monitored by Italian Serie A outfit Juventus as they wish to land him at the club in the coming summer window.

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Chelsea

Chelsea Blow As Juventus Insist £105m Talent Is Not For Sale

Segun Amuda

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Paulo Dybala

Premier League giants Chelsea have received unpalatable news in their pursuit of Juventus forward Paulo Dybala after Juventus disclosed that the Argentine international player is not for sale.

The petite attacker has been linked with clubs like Real Madrid, Liverpool and Chelsea in recent weeks after his struggles at Italian Serie A giants Juventus with the arrival of Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo in a club-record deal last summer.

In a chat with Italian media outlet Gazetta dello Sport, Juventus sporting director Fabio Patarici said that the club is not looking to sell Dybala since they can replace him with either Messi or Neymar.

Paulo Dybala has not performed to his full potentials at Juventus this season and that could be traced to Ronaldo who has now assumed the main man role at the club at the expense of Dybala.

The former Palermo player has scored 10 goals in all competitions with only two of those coming in the Italian Serie A.

Recent reports claim that Real Madrid want to spend as much £105m to secure his transfer from the Italian champions, while Liverpool have also been linked with him in an unlikely swap deal involving Mohamed Salah with reports claiming that Juventus want to offer £50m plus Dybala for Salah.

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Chelsea

€100m Chelsea Target Is NOT For Sale

Segun Amuda

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Inter Milan chief Piero Ausilio has revealed that the club wants to keep contract rebel Mauro Icardi at the club amidst the transfer rumours fuelled by the decision to drop him as the Nerazzurri captain.

Ausilio occupies the sporting director role at Inter Milan and in his latest interview monitored by FourFourTwo, he revealed that the Argentine international player is not for sale.

The new development is a big transfer blow to Premier League giants Chelsea who are long-term admirers of the former Sampdoria hitman.

The 25-year-old has also been linked with a transfer to European champions Real Madrid who are keen on a summer move for a long-term replacement for the ageing Karim Benzema.

€100m-rated Icardi came through the ranks at Catalan giants Barcelona before joining Sampdoria where he started his professional career.

He has scored 109 goals in 179 Italian Serie A games since Icardi joined Inter Milan in 2013.

Inter Milan had announced on Wednesday that Samir Handanovic will be the new skipper after Icardi was relieved of his captaincy duties though the club maintains that the decision is in isolation with the current contract standoff between the player and the Italians.

Mauro Icardi still has over two years left on his contract scheduled to run down in 2021.

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Chelsea

Chelsea Eyeing Discount In €36m Higuain Transfer

Segun Amuda

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Gonzalo Higuain

Chelsea are reportedly holding out for a significant discount in their bid to make the loan transfer of striker Gonzalo Higuain a permanent one in the summer.

This is according to the report from Italian media platform Correire di Torino which claimed that Chelsea are not willing to pay more than €30m for a permanent transfer for Argentine international player Higuain.

Italian giants Juventus had earlier revealed that Chelsea can sign Higuain for €36m at the end of his short-term loan contract at Stamford Bridge.

Juventus confirmed the required transfer fee for a permanent Higuain deal during the official confirmation of his loan transfer to Chelsea during the January transfer window.

Eddie Howe Reiterates Desire To Keep Chelsea Target At Bournemouth

Since his move to Chelsea last month, Gonzalo Higuain has scored two goals in four appearances including two in three Premier League games.

He was part of the Chelsea squad that recorded their worst Premier League defeat via a 6-0 thrashing at the hands of English champions Manchester City.

Higuain’s compatriot Sergio Aguero was the tormentor-in-chief as he netted a treble to compound the woes of under-pressure Sarri.

Raheem Sterling found the back of the net twice, while German international player Ilkay Gundogan was also on target for the Citizens.

Chelsea dropped two places to sixth spot on the table as a result of the heavy beating.

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Chelsea

£18m Striker Wants Chelsea Stay Despite Foreign Offers

Segun Amuda

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Olivier Giroud

Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud is desperate to stay at the club for at least one season despite offers from clubs outside England.

This is according to the report from the popular English media platform The Sun.

It was revealed that the French World Cup winner is hopeful that West London giants Chelsea will offer him a one-year contract extension.

Giroud was part of the French team that won a second FIFA World Cup title at the 2018 edition in Russia.

The ex-Montpellier player was the star striker for France who won the World Cup with a 4-2 victory over fellow Europeans Croatia in their final clash last summer.

The 32-year-old swapped Arsenal for Chelsea in January 2018 in a deal worth £18m and he went on to sign an 18-month contract at Stamford Bridge.

He has played second fiddle to both Alvaro Morata and Gonzalo Higuain at Chelsea this season though he has still managed 12 starts this season.

The Frenchman has also netted five goals in six Europa League games this term with his latest strike coming in the Europa League last 32 first leg win over Swedish side Malmo on Thursday night.

Giroud scored what proved to be the winning goal in a 2-1 away win over Malmo.

He has foreign offers from China and home country France.

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Bundesliga

Journalist Confirms Liverpool Interest In £50m Bundesliga Attacker

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Timo Werner

Five-time European champions Liverpool have been strongly linked with a summer move for in-form Bundesliga attacker Timo Werner and those transfer rumours have now been confirmed by an experienced journalist.

James Pearce of the Liverpool Echo has revealed that German international Timo Werner is on the radar of the Premier League challengers but it’s not certain that the petite striker will end up at the club.

This is coming on the back of the open support for the Werner transfer to Liverpool from two Reds stars namely Sadio Mane and Naby Keita.

Both Mane and Keita have thrown their weight behind the transfer with Guinean international Naby Keita saying that he will tell his former teammate to come to Liverpool if he decides to leave German Bundesliga club, RB Leipzig.

Naby Keita and Timo Werner were teammates at RB Leipzig before the former joined Liverpool last summer in a £53m deal.

£50m-rated Werner has less than 18 months left on his current deal at his German club having turned down several opportunities to sign a contract extension.

He has been in very good form for RB Leipzig in the German top flight after netting 11 goals to propel his team to the top four positions on the league table.

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