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Football rumours: Barca back in the race for Raphinha after financial boost

Norwich City v Leeds United – Premier League – Carrow Road
(Image credit: Joe Giddens)

What the papers say

Barcelona are back in the race to sign Leeds forward Raphinha after appearing to be overtaken by Chelsea as they struggled with finances. According to The Times, the Spanish giants have now re-emerged as the main contender for the 25-year-old and are prepared to offer up to £60 million.

Talks have ramped up between Chelsea and Juventus over the latter’s centre-back Matthijs de Ligt, The Daily Telegraph reports. However progress could still easily be derailed by the Serie A club wanting the 22-year-old’s £102m clause to be activated.

Manchester City’s Nathan Ake during the Emirates FA Cup semi final match at Wembley Stadium, London

Manchester City are reluctant to sell Nathan Ake if they are unable to find a replacement for him (Adam Davy/PA)

Elsewhere, the Manchester Evening News writes that Manchester City will only sell defender Nathan Ake to the Blues if they can replace him. The 27-year-old is one of a number of players being targeted by the West London club as new owner Todd Boehly hopes to shore things up for another shot at the Premier League title.

And The Guardian says West Ham are focusing their efforts on former Manchester United forward Jesse Lingard, 29, after their move for Villarreal winger Arnaut Danjuma, 25, hit a speed hump. The paper writes the Hammers are yet to agree to “personal terms” with the 25-year-old and it’s caused “various complications” with his current club.

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Players to watch

England’s Djed Spence during the UEFA European U21 Championship Qualifying match at the Proact Stadium, Chesterfield

Tottenham are in advanced talks to sign Djed Spence (Martin Rickett/PA)

Djed Spence: Sky Sports reports Tottenham are in advanced talks to sign the 21-year-old English right-back from Middlesbrough for £15m plus add-ons.

Ruben Neves: The Sun writes that the Wolves have succeeded in their battle to keep the 25-year-old at Molineux due to other clubs being reluctant to meet his £75m asking price.

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