What the papers say – December 24

Thursday’s papers are dominated by Brexit trade negotiations finally nearing their end.

The Times, The Daily Telegraph and The Guardian report the UK and EU are within “touching distance” of agreeing terms on a Brexit trade deal.

The Independent says negotiations are “in the end phase”, while the Financial Times reports the legal teams for both sides are “poring over” the fine print of the agreement.

The i cites a French diplomat claiming the UK gave in to European demands.

Formal confirmation of the deal is expected early on Thursday, according to the Daily Express and Daily Mirror.

Meanwhile a number of papers take a festive theme over the news, with The Sun and the Daily Mail dubbing the occasion “Brexmas”.

Elsewhere, the Daily Star leads with the emergence of a new mutant strain of coronavirus and millions more Britons set to enter Tier 4 lockdown from Boxing Day.