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Stoke City move closer to deal for Real Madrid midfielder Sergio Molina

Molina caught the eye in last season's UEFA Youth League.

Stoke City expect to seal the signing of Real Madrid teenager Sergio Molina this week, sources have told ESPN FC.

As ESPN FC revealed last week, Molina arrived in England for talks and to undergo a medical at the Britannia Stadium.

The defensive midfielder featured for Real's under-19 side last season and caught the eye in the UEFA Youth League, scoring two goals in six appearances.

The 19-year-old has been...

 By Ben Gladwell

Andrea Pirlo joins New York City FC from Juventus

The ESPN FC crew discuss the impact Andrea Pirlo will have in Major League Soccer after Juventus recently confirmed the midfielder's move.
New York City FC forward David Villa says Italian legend Andrea Pirlo would be a very welcomed addition to the club.
The ESPN FC panel discuss your tweets, including whether or not the arrival of Frank Lampard, and expected arrival of Andrea Pirlo, will help the league.

Juventus have confirmed that midfielder Andrea Pirlo has completed a move to New York City FC.

Italy international Pirlo will play alongside Frank Lampard and David Villa at the Major League Soccer club after leaving Italy for the first time in his career.

With a tribute on their website, Juventus thanked the 36-year-old for four seasons in Turin, in which he won four successive Serie A titles.

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Southampton uncertain on Morgan Schneiderlin and Toby Alderweireld

ESPN FC's Gabriele Marcotti ranks the possibility of Southampton's Morgan Schneiderlin making the move to Manchester United.

Southampton boss Ronald Koeman has said Manchester United have failed to meet the club's asking price for Morgan Schneiderlin.

Sources told ESPN FC last month that Schneiderlin was weighing up two options, but Koeman said Saints had rejected a bid from United and that they had yet to make a further offer for the France international.

"Two weeks ago we had a bid of Man United," Koeman told a news conference. "It wasn't enough. Not serious. No more bids till today."

He refused to confirm the value...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

William Carvalho to stay at Sporting Libson despite Arsenal talk - Jesus

Defensive reinforcements are high on the agenda of several Premier League teams, as they look to strengthen their respective back lines.
Carvalho's explosive season in Portugal has put him on various clubs' transfer radars.
William Carvalho made six Champions League appearances last season.

Reported Arsenal target William Carvalho will be remaining at Sporting Lisbon, according to manager Jorge Jesus.

Carvalho, 23, has been linked with a move to Arsenal after enjoying an impressive European Under-21 Championship with Portugal.

But Jesus, who became Sporting boss this summer after leaving Benfica, is confident the midfielder will be part of his squad for next season.

Jesus is quoted by the Daily Express as telling Portuguese television network SIC: "William is a certainty. Sporting...

 By Kevin Palmer

Didier Drogba: Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic and Carles Puyol best opponents

Didier Drogba came up against Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand when Chelsea lost the 2008 Champions League final.

Former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba has said Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic and Barcelona's Carles Puyol were the toughest opponents he faced.

Drogba, 37, spent two spells as a Chelsea player in which he won four Premier League titles, four FA Cups, three League Cups, and the Champions League.

Asked which opponents had provided his most enjoyable and toughest challenges in an interview with Ferdinand to be broadcast on BT Sport on Monday, he told the former United...