Paper Round: Manchester City plan £50m Benjamin Mendy swoop
Manchester City want Benjamin Mendy, Kylian Mbappe will stay in Monaco, Riyad Mahrez may join Roma, and Lewis Hamilton is fighting back.
City turn attention to Mendy
Not content with signing Kyle Walker from Manchester City, Pep Guardiola made an enquiry over Spurs left-back Danny Rose during transfer talks. Guardiola's interest was rebuffed by Spurs, who told him the 27-year-old defender was not for sale. Manchester City will now turn their attention to Benjamin Mendy of Monaco, who will lose yet another player to the Premier League, having sold Bernardo Silva and Tiemoue Bakayoko already.
Benjamin Mendy, le 2 juin 2017, lors d'un centre face au Paraguay.Getty Images
Paper Round's view: The only reason Guardiola must prefer Rose to Mendy is that the Monaco defender is not proven in the Premier League, yet. However, going by Monaco's performances in the Champions League last season, and Mendy's own contributions, he represents a better player and better value for money - providing, of course, he is able to settle in quickly. Guardiola has a poor track record when it comes to buying defenders.
Mbappe to stay at Monaco
Despite losing Mendy, there is some good news for Monaco today. Their star striker, the 18-year-old French striker Kylian Mbappe, is set to remain at the club for at least one more season. When questioned over the chances of signing Mbappe for Arsenal, Arsene Wenger said: "That’s not true. People have a big imagination. What we know now is that Mbappe is over £100million and after that it’s free to imagine what you want. But we have not made any offer. I think he will stay, it looks like that, for one more season. Maybe he has too much choice. In the end, people with too much choice don’t move."
Kylian MbappeGetty Images
Paper Round's view: Arsenal will likely only get Mbappe if there are no other contenders for his signature. That is now a possibility, with Real Madrid struggling to reinforce their squad and raise funds for another superstar signing. The problem for Arsenal is two-fold. Not only do they need to find more than £100m, they also have to contend with the fact that if Mbappe really wants a move elsewhere, he can simply wait one more season. As they now have Alexandre Lacazette, there is less urgency over a transfer.
Leicester in talks with Roma over Mahrez
Leicester City are in negotiations with Roma over the potential sale of 26-year-old Riyad Mahrez. Roma have offered around £26m for the winger, but Leicester are holding out for a fee of closer to £40m. There is interest from other clubs, too, with Chelsea, Arsenal and Everton also considering a bid, should their be some flexibility on the asking price.
Arsenal closing in on Riyad Mahrez deal – reportsGetty Images
Paper Round's view: An effective, consistent playmaker is a rare thing in football, and Mahrez is one of those. While he struggled a little last season, that was in the context of a wider set of problems for Leicester. Chelsea and Arsenal could certainly use some strength in depth for the coming season, but he would make the biggest difference to a side like Everton, who are trying to break into the top four.
Hamilton pole sets up potential British victory
Lewis Hamilton claimed pole by half a second at Silverstone on Saturday, giving him respite after a difficult week. Hamilton missed the PR event for the Grand Prix on Wednesday, incurring criticism and boos. Others questioned if he knew how to properly prepare for races. The pole means that he is favourite to cut the 20-point lead Sebastian Vettel holds over Hamilton.
Paper Round's view: Hamilton is criticised for his obvious self-regard, but given that is hardly an uncommon trait in Formula One - almost every competitor seems to carry around a chip on one shoulder and a hefty ego on the other - it is unfair that he should get any more abuse than other drivers. He has proven himself an able champion in the past, and this could well be a way to kick-off another comeback.