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BBC Gossip Column Debunked – Issue 68

I’m not sure if I’m still drunk or hungover. Lets get the gossip out of the way quickly

Gossip in standard font, my thoughts are in bold

Chelsea boss Antonio Conte is planning to spend £200m on Leicester midfielder Danny Drinkwater, 27, Arsenal midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 24, and three defenders from Southampton: Virgil van Dijk, 26, Cedric Soares, 25, and Ryan Bertrand, 28. (Express) £200m for that group of players, game’s gone mad

The Blues have also enquired about central defender Toby Alderweireld’s interest in leaving Tottenham, with the 28-year-old’s talks about a new deal progressing poorly. (Sunday Times – subscription required) Enquired but I think that will be a polite no at the moment anyhow

Atletico Madrid are prepared to offer up to £50m for Chelsea’s 28-year-old striker Diego Costa. (Daily Mail) Surely his value has fallen, I reckon they can get him for cheaper than that

Manchester City are ready to pay Arsenal £70m for their 28-year-old forward Alexis Sanchez. (Mirror) Ready to pay it but Arsenal still look unlikely to except it

Barcelona have told Liverpool they have until Sunday to accept their £118m bid for 25-year-old attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho, or the offer will be withdrawn. (Times – subscription required) Barcelona setting something of an ultimatum there

The Spanish club have made signing Coutinho their number one priority. They are working to reach an agreement with Liverpool, and the Brazil international believes he will eventually leave. (Sport – in Spanish) Surely Liverpool will buckle in the end without the amount being reportedly involved

Barca will improve their bid for Coutinho to £130m, although they will have to offer more than a guaranteed £80m before add-ons to tempt Liverpool, who value the player at £140m. (Express) I think the structure of the deal could be the most important aspect here

Liverpool’s hopes of signing Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk, 26, could be thwartedby Juventus.(Gazzetta dello Sport via Daily Star on Sunday) Will someone just sign the poor bloke

Paris St-Germain have finally reached agreement with Monaco over the 200m euro (£182m) signing of their 18-year-old striker Kylian Mbappe. (Mundo Deportivo – in Spanish) That’s the French season done and dusted then

Newcastle are considering making a bid for their former striker Andy Carroll, 28, now with West Ham. (Mirror) Great news if they want a permanently injured forward I guess

Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool are all interested in signing 23-year-old winger Julian Draxler from Paris St-Germain.(Mirror) PSG are not selling as they said yesterday

Barcelona are stepping up their interest in Nice’s 26-year-old Ivory Coast midfielder Jean Michael Seri. (Sport – in Spanish) Which is Nice

Borussia Dortmund’s sporting director Michael Zorc says 20-year-old forward Ousmane Dembele will only be sold at the right price. (Four Four Two) And that price is below

Barcelona will have to offer 150m euros (£137m), including add-ons, if they are to sign Dembele. (RAC 1 – in Catalan) And that price is insane

Real Madrid want to increase Marco Asensio’s release clause to 500m euros (£456m). The 21-year-old midfielder’s current contract has a release clause of 350m euros (£319m). (Marca) PSG will find the money I’m sure

Burnley are closing in on the club record £15m signing of Leeds United striker Chris Wood, 25, with a deal to be completed by Monday. (Lancashire Telegraph) A “dream move” they said earlier in the week

Crystal Palace manager Frank de Boer is targeting several more signings. But he does not want to bring back defender Mamadou Sakho, 27, from Liverpool, and winger Andros Townsend, 26, could be sold. (Daily Mail) I reckon Frank De Boer might be an early contender for the sack race

Real Madrid have rejected a 75m euro (£68.5m) bid from Juventus for their 23-year-old midfielder Mateo Kovacic, (AS) Juventus surely do not need him this summer as well do they?

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