Ligue 1

Rice Arsenal, Tielemans, Mac Allister Liverpool

Rice Arsenal, Tielemans, Mac Allister Liverpool

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AC Milan director Paolo Maldini: “Rafael Leao will sign a new deal very soon, it’s 100% guaranteed. Final details will be completed in some days.”

Leao has already signed a new deal valid until June 2028.

Granit Xhaka is set to leave Arsenal at the end of the season. There will be no negotiations over a new deal as both parties plan to part ways in June. Bayer Leverkusen are now in very advanced talks to sign him for a €15m fee. Personal terms are almost agreed over a four-year deal running until June 2027.

The reality is that negotiations between Xhaka and Arsenal never really got started, and now the idea is clear, to part ways at the end of the season. German clubs like to do their business fast, not in August, and Leverkusen are now in advanced talks over Xhaka, having already confirmed a deal for Alejandro Grimaldo. It’s a good opportunity for Xhaka to get a long-term contract and to be a leader of the Leverkusen project.

Arsenal look set to have a big summer, and are following a number of defenders such as Mohamed Simakan and Edmond Tapsoba. And with Xhaka leaving, they are also working on signing a midfielder. Declan Rice has always been a top target and he remains their priority. There have been conversations between Arsenal and Rice, while Mikel Arteta and Edu were already discussing him internally back in January. Arsenal now plan to prepare an official bid for the West Ham star in the next few weeks, but this won’t be easy because the Hammers are focusing on the Europa Conference League. It’s not imminent, because West Ham don’t want to negotiate until June, but it’s been clear since last summer that Rice would not sign a new deal with his current club. Arsenal will be there, it’s their priority, they want to try to bid for him soon.

Arsenal won’t be alone in pursuing Rice, because there’s also interest from Chelsea, while Manchester United also need a new midfielder and are keeping an eye on the situation.

Huge news for United States confirmed yesterday: Arsenal star Folarin Balogun has finally decided to represent USMNT — he will switch allegiance to USA. Balogun took his time but the decision has been made. Despite 13 appearances and seven goals with England Under-21s, the 21-year-old, who was born in New York, will no longer represent England and will make…

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