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Transfer Talk: Hazard leaves door open for Madrid move

Transfer Talk
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Transfer Rater: Icardi to Madrid, Godin to Milan

Football Whispers
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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Man City move ahead of Liverpool in chase for Monaco's Thomas Lemar

Clubs are slowly turning their eyes toward the summer window, and Transfer Talk has the updates on all the latest rumours.

Man City jump the queue for Lemar

Despite being linked with Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool in the past 12 months, Thomas Lemar may instead sign for Manchester City, according to the Telegraph.

The report states that Pep Guardiola remains keen to add to his attacking options, having failed to land Alexis Sanchez and Riyad Mahrez in January, and has his eye on the Monaco star.

The 22-year-old attacker has two years left on his contract, and it's uncertain whether at this point it would take meeting or exceeding the £90 million Arsenal offered for Lemar on deadline day last summer.

Liverpool are reportedly working on an agreement in principle for the France international, but City have the funds to blow any bid out of the water. Further working in City's favour is the business they did with Monaco last summer, when they brought in Benjamin Mendy and Bernardo Silva.

Barca must sell to fund Griezmann purchase

Barcelona considered bidding for Antoine Griezmann last summer, but that was nearly impossible considering Atletico Madrid's €200m asking price. Now, with his release clause down to €100m, the Catalans are ready to pounce, but Marca reports that they'll have to sell before they can buy.

With some €436m spent on transfers since last July, Barca will need to balance their books before adding the 26-year-old to their ranks.

Griezmann's arrival would further limit opportunities for striker Paco Alcacer, leaving him as a prime candidate to leave the Camp Nou. The report states that Denis Suarez, Arda Turan, Andre Gomes and Aleix Vidal are all likely to be sold off this summer.

Spurs fight to keep hold of Rose, Alderweireld

At a contract impasse, Toby Alderweireld could soon be on his way out of Tottenham, writes the Sun.

The 29-year-old centre-back is unhappy with the club's £110,000-a-week offer, seeking closer to £140,000 a week. And his current deal has a £25m buyout clause in 2019, meaning that if Spurs are unable to agree a new deal with the Belgium international, this summer is their last chance to cash in.

And Manchester United are confident of winning the race to sign Alderweireld. Spurs could lose out further, as the Belgian's defensive partner in North London, left-back Danny Rose, also wants to move to Old Trafford. Before that can happen, though, the Red Devils will need to find a buyer for Luke Shaw.

Tap-ins

- Borussia Dortmund defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos is on Jose Mourinho's radar as he looks to bolster his back-line in the summer, reports the Mirror. The outlet says Mourinho hasn't given up on the aforementioned Alderweireld, but is looking to the Greek international as a contingency plan for the Spurs centre-back.

- Barcelona are calling off their pursuit of long-time target Hector Bellerin, according to Calciomercato.com. Bellerin was a Barca academy product before moving to Arsenal in 2013, but any hopes of a return to the Nou Camp seem to be gone the report says, a development that could encourage a keen Juventus club from renewing their interest.

- Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool will not hesitate to spend a lot of money in the transfer market, but only for the "right player" at the "right moment."

Liverpool have £142m to work with following the sale of Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona, and having already broken the club's transfer record to sign Virgil van Dijk for £75m, Klopp said the club will not be shy to spend their windfall.

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