Transfer gossip: Wenger snubs Prem return, Ranieri wants Liverpool defender, Real eye Neymar

Thursday, November 15th, 2018 1:55pm

By Stuart Harlow @lovesportradio

Transfer gossip is back to bring you all the Premier League rumours from Thursday's papers, analysing the biggest stories so that you don’t have to.

Arsene Wenger turns down Premier League return

Arsene Wenger was approached to take over at Fulham before Slavisa Jokanovic was sacked earlier this week, according to the Mirror.

Jokanovic lost his job with Fulham rooted to the bottom of the Premier League after six straight defeats.

The 50-year-old was replaced by ex-Chelsea and Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri but a report in the Mirror suggests Wenger was sounded out by the club hierarchy with the promise of yet more funds to spend in January.

However, Wenger said he would not take another top-flight job in England out of respect to Arsenal, where he ended a 22-year spell this summer.

Love Sport verdict: It would have been extremely weird to see Wenger posing in a black-and-white scarf at the Cottage and stalking up and down the touchline in a relegation battle. Nevertheless, it says a lot about where Fulham see themselves that they would pick up the phone to Wenger.

Fulham eye Matip to fix defence

Joel Matip is reportedly Claudio Ranieri’s first transfer target in January as the Italian looks to rectify the defensive problems at Craven Cottage.

Matip joined Liverpool in 2016 but has lost his first-team place thanks to the form of Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez and has only started one Premier League game this season.

Turkish publication A Sport claim former Liverpool director Damien Comolli is hoping to tempt the Cameroon international to Fenerbahce, where he signed a three-year contract over the summer.

But they also claim that Besiktas and Fulham are both interested.

Love Sport verdict: Fulham have, incredibly, shipped 31 goals in just 12 Premier League games so far this season and centre-back is definitely a problem area that they did not solve with their £100million transfer splurge over the summer. Ranieri has plenty of issues to solve but defending is the most pressing.Joel Matip CROPPED

Real Madrid ready for Neymar or Mbappe

Financial Fair Play could force Paris Saint-Germain to offload Neymar or Kylian Mbappe and Spanish newspaper AS claim Real Madrid are ready to pounce.

Neymar has already been linked with a move away from PSG little more than a year after his £200million switch from Barcelona.

Mbappe meanwhile has long been a target of Real Madrid with his stellar World Cup performances that helped France to victory in Russia only strengthening their conviction.

The report suggests that if PSG are forced to sell one of their superstars, Mbappe is less likely to be allowed to leave than Neymar.

Love Sport verdict: The Football Leaks just keep coming and PSG seem to be one of the biggest targets, with allegations of payments to almost everyone involved in the transfers of Mbappe and Neymar. If the Brazilian ends up at Real Madrid, it would represent one of the most sensational transfers of all time.

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