Paper Round: Barcelona, Real Madrid, Juventus want January transfer window slammed shut
Barcelona and Real Madrid are among the clubs looking to quell PSG’s spending by closing the January transfer window. It’s Tuesday’s Paper Round.
Europe’s finest want January window closed
Leading European clubs want the winter transfer window to be scrapped, The Sun reports. Following the decision of 14 Premier League clubs to close the summer window early, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Juventus – but notably not PSG – are among the clubs looking to end the January madness, which has become known for mid-season panic buys more so than worthwhile investments. The aim is also to halt PSG from spending even more, and to prevent clubs from losing their prize assets.
Kylian Mbappé and NeymarGetty Images
Paper Round’s view: Bar the odd anomaly, January signings tend be rushed and ill-thought out – but is tying a player to one club for a whole season too long? It increases the chances of footballers honouring their contract, but for those who fall out of the manager’s favour and have nowhere to go, it would feel like an even longer winter if they have to wait till June.
FA fear World Cup hackers
The Football Association has expressed its concerns to FIFA regarding the potential of seeing England’s secrets spilled ahead of the World Cup in Russia. The Guardian reports that the FA will beef up its security amid fears Russian hackers Fancy Bears – who previously attained information regarding British Olympians – will look to leak tactics and team news before games are played, should England qualify for the tournament next summer.
Harry Kane at England trainingReuters
Paper Round’s view: There’s a serious side to this issue, but it’s much easier to take the lighter angle and note that at least the FA have a decent excuse to roll out when we fall to Japan on penalties. “They knew which direction Harry Kane would aim his penalty.”
Roy’s £1m bonus
Roy Hodgson will be handed a £1m survival bonus if he keeps Crystal Palace in the Premier League, according to the Mirror. That is of course if the former England boss succeeds Frank de Boer, who was sacked on Monday after five games in charge. The report claims Hodgson, expected to sign on the dotted line imminently, will be handed a £2.5m-a-year deal with an extra million coming his way should they stay up.
Paper Round’s view: Four league games in and the panic button was well and truly pressed at Palace. Talk of survival and relegation fears at Selhurst Park is akin to Sunderland giving up after a few minutes into the Premier League season last year, but given that they face Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea shortly, perhaps it’s best to plan ahead…
Gray to sign new Foxes deal
Demarai Gray will sign a new £50,000-a-week contract at Leicester after the club rejected a £25m offer for the winger from Bournemouth in August, the Telegraph reports. Gray looks set to commit his future to the Foxes despite Bournemouth’s advances, while Crystal Palace were also keen on the England Under-21 star.
Paper Round’s view: A sign of the times when Gray can secure a bumper contract worth 50k a week, but the fear that a better deal will see players jump ship means clubs are forced into paying such figures. Gray is an exciting talent, but rarely features in Leicester’s starting XI – perhaps it was better to move on, but clearly Craig Shakespeare is looking towards the future.