World Football Gossip Roundup: Robert Lewandowski, Gonzalo Higuain, Casemiro
Robert Lewandowski is a hot commodity in Europe after his performance in the UEFA Champions League semifinals with Borussia Dortmund. The latest rumors suggest even more clubs are popping up in the race to sign him.
That story leads this Monday edition of the B/R World Football Gossip Roundup, which also includes news on Gonzalo Higuain (pictured), Fernandinho, Franck Ribery, Casemiro and more.
Keep reading for all the details.
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Borussia Dortmund officials are "desperate" for striker Robert Lewandowski to sign with Chelsea instead of Bayern Munich, according to the Daily Star.
Lewandowski, a 24-year-old Poland international, has scored 23 goals in the Bundesliga and 10 in the UEFA Champions League this season. His contract expires in 2014, and he is expected to leave BVB this summer.
Mario Gotze, a 20-year-old attacking midfielder, is already set to join Bayern from Dortmund this summer. Lewandowski is valued around £25 million, and Dortmund would reportedly want attacking midfielder Kevin De Bruyne as part of a deal with Chelsea.
According to the Star, Manchester United are also interested. Meanwhile, talkSPORT reports that Real Madrid have entered the race. Lewandowski scored four goals against Real last month in the first leg of their Champions League semifinal.
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Juventus want to sign Argentine striker Gonzalo Higuain from Real Madrid, according to talkSPORT.
Higuain, 25, joined Real from River Plate in 2006, making his debut in January 2007. He has scored 13 league goals this season in 24 appearances.
Chelsea are also thought to be interested.
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Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fernandinho reportedly wants to join Manchester City to help his chances of playing for Brazil in the 2014 FIFA World Cup (via The Sun).
Fernandinho, 28, has been heavily linked with City in recent weeks. His contract reportedly has a £42.5 million release clause. City manager Roberto Mancini reportedly wants to sign him for closer to £20 million.
Fernandinho is quoted as saying:
I believe my chances of making the World Cup squad will improve if I join City.
My exposure would be better, because Brazil is biased towards the Ukrainian league.
What we do here is not recognised in my country. Playing in a division, at a club that is considered among the best in the world would help me get back in the Brazilian national team.
There are a lot of people in England with good football knowledge. Those complement my skills, and motivate me to want to play in the Premier League.
Fernandinho has been capped five times by Brazil.
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France international midfielder Franck Ribery says he would "love" to sign a new contract from Bayern Munich, according to Kicker (via ESPN FC).
Ribery, 30, joined Bayern in 2007 from Marseille. His current contract runs until 2015. Bayern general manager Matthias Sammer last week said Ribery "will help us for a long time to come."
Speaking about extending his contract, Ribery said: "I’d love to. If it is possible to sign a new contract – why not?”
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Real Madrid want to make Casemiro's loan move from Sao Paulo permanent, according to the player's agent (via Sky Sports).
Casemiro, a 21-year-old Brazilian midfielder, joined Real this season on loan and has made one appearance with the senior team.
Agent Joseph Lee said: "It's certain that Real Madrid will want to keep the player, but they need to reach an agreement with Sao Paulo first."
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Neymar will not leave Santos this summer, according to the player's father (via talkSPORT).
A poll of Real Madrid fans has revealed their preferred transfer target this summer is Tottenham Hotspur's Gareth Bale (via Marca).
Manchester City are chasing Atletico Madrid's academy star Oliver Torres, a midfielder (via Marca).
Manager Antonio Conte (pictured) will remain with Juventus next season, according to general director Beppe Marotta (via Football Italia).
Liverpool want to sign Brazilian defender Douglas to replace the retiring Jamie Carragher (via Daily Mail).
Manchester United are weighing a move for Juan Fernando Quintero, a Colombia Under-20 midfielder (via Daily Mail).