Football rumours from the media
What the papers say
Leicester are planning a raid on manager Brendan Rodgers’ old club Celtic for defender Kristoffer Ajer, according to website 90min. The 21-year-old Norway international was originally a midfielder but was converted into a central defender by Rodgers. The Foxes, who sold centre-back Harry Maguire to Manchester United last summer, are now said to be preparing a £20million bid to lure Ajer south in January.
Jose Mourinho is closely monitoring his Portuguese countrymen Ruben Dias and Bruno Fernandes with an eye to luring them to Tottenham, 90min reports. Benfica defender Dias, 22, and Sporting Lisbon midfielder Fernandes, 25, have both shone for Portugal. Mourinho is said to be keen to sign the pair to his latest club, but will face competition for Dias at least, with Manchester City reportedly keeping an eye on the Benfica man as well.
Raheem Sterling is waiting to see if manager Pep Guardiola will stay at Manchester City before deciding on a new contract with the Sky Blues, The Sun reports. The star striker is contracted to City until the summer of 2023 but the club are keen to tie him down to a new contract long before then. Sterling, however, is unwilling to commit to the Premier League champions until Guardiola’s future is decided, with the Spaniard under contract until summer 2021.
Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder is in the sights of West Ham as the London club consider a possible replacement for Manuel Pellegrini, the Daily Mirror says. Pellegrini is facing the chop after a poor start to the season for the Hammers, while Wilder has exceeded expectations with the newly-promoted Blades, who sit sixth in the Premier League after a third of the season.
Embattled Everton manager Marco Silva will have two more games to turn the club’s fortunes around, the Daily Mail reports. The Portuguese has been struggling to achieve results with the Toffees, whose fans showed a desire for a change of manager after Saturday’s 2-0 loss to Norwich.
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Players to watch
Joao Virginia: The 20-year-old Portugal goalkeeper may be recalled to Everton from his loan spell at Reading, the Liverpool Echo reports.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: The Arsenal striker may be lost to the club next summer as fears grow he will be reluctant to stay under manager Unai Emery, according to the Daily Mirror.
Chris Smalling: The Manchester United and England defender may be staying with Roma permanently, after an impressive start to his year-long loan deal, Corriere della Sera reports.