Friday's big transfer rumours: Rafa Benitez to get HUGE budget this summer
What the papers say
Real Madrid are close to finalising a deal with Eden Hazard, according to reports. Spanish outlet Marca says an agreement with Chelsea will be made public in the coming days. The Sun reports that the Blues dropped the Belgian playmaker’s price to £90 million. His original valuation was reportedly more than £100 million. The 28-year-old has a year left on his contract at Stamford Bridge, so Chelsea will have to sell him in the summer to cash in.
Newcastle executives will furnish Rafael Benitez with a £100 million transfer kitty for the coming window, the Daily Mirror reports. The Magpies are in a more stable financial situation than they were last season, the Daily Mail says, with turnover up to £178.5 million — an increase of £92.8 million. Wages are reportedly down by nearly £9 million to £103.4 million, sending profit up to £18.6 million.
Arsenal are chasing Hoffenheim and Germany forward Kerem Demirbay, the Metro reports. The Gunners have reportedly made contact about signing up the 25-year-old midfielder, who is said to be on the market for £22 million. He has been tapped up as a replacement for departing Wales midfielder Aaron Ramsey, the paper says.
Southampton are considering a move for Rangers midfielder Scott Arfield, the Daily Mirror reports. The 30-year-old Canada international, who also played for Scotland, has caught the eye of Premier League clubs and they could secure his services for as little as £3 million.
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Players to watch
Paulo Dybala: The Argentine forward’s sale by Juventus could herald a move to buy Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah, Tuttosport reports.
Matthijs de Ligt: Barcelona and five other clubs are chasing the 19-year-old Ajax captain and Holland defender, Marca report.