Barcelona chief reveals how Jules Kounde’s agent was disturbing him for move

Jules Kounde’s agent had Barcelona on speed dial in order to seal his client a dream move to the Nou Camp amid Chelsea’s interest.

Director of football Mateu Alemany confirmed Kounde’s representative called them “almost every day” before finally sealing a transfer.

Alemany said: “Almost every day they [Kounde’s team] called me for an update because Kounde wanted to join Barca and he was waiting for us.

“In the end I had to tell Jonathan [Kebe, his agent] not to call anymore because I didn’t know what to tell him.

“When we sold the second portion of future TV rights, Kounde had almost closed his deal with another club. But he wanted to come to Barca”

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Manchester City identify Chelsea-bound Marc Cucurella alternative

Manchester City are set to switch focus in their search for a left-back after failing to agree a transfer fee with Brighton & Hove Albion for Marc Cucurella.

According to ESPN, Man City will not pay the Seagulls’ £50 million asking price for the Barcelona youth product and that they are now actively looking at alternatives.

The Athletic reports that Borussia Dortmund star Raphael Guerreiro, a target that they have previously been linked with due to his ability to contribute high up the pitch, has been escalated up Man City’s shortlist.

The 28-year-old contributed to eight goals in 23 starts across the Bundesliga and Champions League for BVB last season, and he has also impressed while representing Portugal at international level.

Having moved Oleksandr Zinchenko to Arsenal, City are expected to ramp up their transfer efforts next week, with hopes of landing a replacement before their Premier League campaign begins on Sunday against West Ham United.

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Ex-Chelsea star Ballack gives Werner advice as Leipzig, Juventus slug it out

Michael Ballack has hinted that Timo Werner should demand an exit from Chelsea as RB Leipzig, Juventus and Arsenal battle to sign the striker.

“Timo has been a lot better than what he is at the moment in terms of personality and character. It was a brave step on his part to go to Chelsea, knowing what their setting is like – but he hasn’t managed to establish himself,” Ballack said.

“He now needs to build up his mental strength once again. He strikes me as a nice guy, but he has to try to flip the switch so he can believe in himself once more. To my mind he is too well-behaved, and he resigns himself to his fate. If that does not change, he will continue to have a difficult time.”

Manchester United star snubs Jose Mourinho

Manchester United ace Eric Bailly is set to snub a reunion with Jose Mourinho at Roma in favour of Sevilla, according to The Sun.

Bailly is in talks with the LaLiga side, who just lost Jules Kounde to Barcelona, over a move away from Old Trafford this summer.

Roma manager Mourinho – who signed the centre-back at United in 2016 – is also interested in bringing the player to Serie A.

AC Milan are keeping tabs on the situation as well, but it appears the Ivory Coast international – whose current deal runs until 2024 – prefers Sevilla.

Paul Pogba’s fleet of luxury supercars shipped

Paul Pogba has had his fleet of luxury supercars transferred from his Manchester home after leaving England for Turin.

The Frenchman ditched Manchester United for Juventus earlier this summer, and is set to take his amazing multi-million pound collection of motors with him.

Pogba, 29, hired Premier Removals to clear out his old pad in Hale, Greater Manchester.

Under the watchful eye of the midfielder’s wife Zulay, workers emptied the property – most notably removing his brilliant fleet of cars.

An incredible array of motors worth more than £1million were hauled onto a multi-vehicle transportation truck.

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Barcelona chiefs explain relationship with Chelsea after hijacking Blues moves for Raphina, Kounde

Barcelona director of football Mateu Alemany insists there is still a good relationship with Chelsea despite hijacking the west London’s moves from both Raphinha and Jules Kounde.

This is after Barca snatched Jules Kounde from their grasp in the summer transfer window.

Alemany added: “We have a very good relationship with Chelsea. We had dinner with the club’s owner.

“It’s possible that we have interest in another one of their players but I don’t want to talk about players who have contracts at other clubs”

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Manchester United boss reveals Cristiano Ronaldo problem

Manchester United superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is still a long way away from being match-fit, manager Erik Ten Hag has revealed.

Ten Hag said: “It’s like before. We plan with him, he’s in the squad.

“I cannot tell [how far away from Premier League fitness Ronaldo is].

“He is definitely not on the level of our squad players at this moment because he missed a lot of weeks.

“He needs games and he needs a lot of training”