Ralf Rangnick is said to have given Manchester United the edge in the race to capture the signature of Erling Haaland.
The Red Devils are set to announce the appointment of Rangnick as interim manager imminently and the veteran German coach could be key in sealing the Haaland transfer.
Rangnick helped secure Haaland’s move to RB Salzburg in January 2019, in his position as sporting director at the Austrian club, and according to the Mirror is set to play a crucial role again in the future of the Norwegian ace.
Borussia Dortmund are due to let Haaland leave the club in the summer when a £63million release clause is activated, with the player reportedly eyeing a move to Spanish giants Real Madrid.
However, Rangnick’s new role at United could be an important development that may sway the 21-year-old’s final decision.
Haaland scored on his return to action from a hip injury in Dortmund’s 3-1 win at Wolfsburg on Saturday, becoming the youngest player to reach 50 goals in the Bundesliga.
In other news
Philippe Coutinho’s proposed transfer to Newcastle is back on the cards, despite the Brazilian’s initial reluctance to join the Magpies.
Barcelona coach Xavi does not view Coutinho as part of his plans at the Camp Nou and would be keen to offload the former Liverpool playmaker to help finance incoming signings.
El Nacional report that a deal of around £30m could be agreed between the two parties, with Coutinho happy to switch if first-team Premier League football can help him secure a place in Brazil’s 2022 World Cup squad.
A deal that could now be off the table however is that of Paul Pogba to Real Madrid.
Marca believe the Spanish giants have renewed confidence in the continued brilliance of midfield maestros Luka Modric, 36, and Toni Kroos, 31, supported by the emerging talent of Eduardo Camavinga and Federico Valverde.
Pogba’s arrival is viewed to be a potential disruption and would require a wage demand that could limit Los Blancos’ financial clout as they seek to prioritize the signing of Kylian Mbappe.
West Ham will make a final bid of £7m to convince Burnley to let James Tarkowski leave the club.
Tarkowski, 29, is out of contract at the end of the season and is willing to leave the Lancashire club, should manager Sean Dyche allow.
Finally, fellow central defender Joe Gomez has been identified as one of Steven Gerrard’s key transfer targets at Aston Villa.
The Express claim Gerrard is prepared to raid former club Liverpool for defensive reinforcements and the 24-year-old England international — who has fallen down the pecking order at Anfield due to injury problems — is said to be the primary option for the newly-appointed Villa coach.