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Football news and transfer gossip: Chelsea’s Dries Mertens blow, Manchester United step up Kalidou Koulibaly pursuit amid Liverpool interest, Juventus set for clearout rounds up all the latest transfer news and football gossip from Tuesday’s papers and online…

Juventus are set to put some of their top stars up for sale this summer in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. Miralem Pjanic, Douglas Costa, Sami Khedira and Gonzalo Higuain are the big names that could leave Turin. The Serie A champions are making cutbacks in an attempt to cope with recent financial constraints brought on due to coronavirus. (Mail)

Mauricio Pochettino is free to join a new club after his gardening leave with Tottenham came to an end at the beginning of the week. The Argentine coach was still being paid by Spurs up until Monday as he was sacked by the club last November. The news could please Newcastle’s prospective new Saudi owners with Pochettino their reported first-choice managerial target should their takeover go through. (FULL STORY)

Mauricio Pochettino was sacked by Tottenham last November
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Manchester United, Liverpool and Barcelona target Kai Havertz has been compared to Chelsea and Germany legend Michael Ballack by talkSPORT host Ally McCoist. The 20-year-old enhanced his reputation by scoring twice in Bayer Leverkusen’s 4-1 win over Werder Bremen on Monday. Havertz, who is valued at around £90million, has also been linked with a move to Barcelona. (FULL STORY)

Manchester United are set to revive their interest in Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly after finding out Liverpool want to sign him. Koulibaly was heavily linked with a £100m move to Old Trafford before the club brought in Harry Maguire for £80m from Leicester last summer. However, the Senegal international could form a solid defensive partnership with Maguire if he decides to join United. (Gazzetta dello Sport)

Kalidou Koulibaly is regarded as one of the world’s best defenders
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Dries Mertens has signed a new three-year contract extension with Napoli, which has ended Chelsea’s hopes of landing him on a free transfer this summer. The 33-year-old, who has scored 90 goals in 226 Serie A games, had also been attracting interest from Inter Milan. Mertens will earn £140,000-a-week at Napoli with a signing-on bonus of £2.2m. (Guardian)

Man City are hopeful David Silva will agree a short-term contract extension in order to complete the 2019/20 season. The end of the current campaign is set to run past June 30 when the 34-year-old’s contract expires. Silva, who joined the club in 2010, remains a key part of Pep Guardiola’s squad. He has scored three goals and registered seven assists in 19 Premier League games this term. (ESPN)

Harry Reknapp says Frank Lampard turned down the chance to manage Ipswich in the summer of 2018 because they had no money to spend on incoming players. The former England midfielder ended up managing Derby for a season, guiding them to the Championship play-off final, which they lost to Aston Villa, before returning to Chelsea to take charge of the first-team. Lampard’s Blues were fourth in the Premier League table when the coronavirus pandemic suspended top-flight matches in March. (Sun)

Andros Townsend has backed the Premier League’s ‘Project Restart’ proposal to resume top-flight matches in England. The Crystal Palace winger believes players will be returning to ‘the safest workplace in the country’. Some Premier League squads are set to return to training in small groups today. The Bundesliga became the first major European football league to resume last weekend amid the coronavirus pandemic. (FULL STORY)

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