Dani Ceballos wanted to quit Real Madrid for Liverpool in January

Dani Ceballos wanted to join Liverpool in January. (Getty Images)Real Madrid blocked Dani Ceballos from joining Liverpool in the January transfer window, according to reports in Spain.

Jurgen Klopp’s side opted to sell Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona in a £142 million deal last month and were reportedly in the market for a replacement.

Monaco refused to sell Thomas Lemar, while Liverpool also attempted to bring Naby Keita’s transfer forward.

But according to Spanish TV show El Chiringuito, Liverpool were also trying to sign Ceballos but their efforts were rejected by Madrid.

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Ceballos has started only two games in La Liga this season. (Getty Images)The report claims that the midfielder wanted to join Anfield and a transfer could go through this summer.

Ceballos joined in a £14.5 million deal from Real Madrid last summer but has failed to secure a regular role under Zinedine Zidane.

Reports have claimed that tensions between Ceballos and Zidane were raised even further on Wednesday evening after the 21-year-old was brought on for just 29 seconds in the 3-1 win over Leganes.

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Arsenal and Liverpool target Stefan de Vrij wants Manchester United transfer move

Stefan de Vrij wants to join Manchester United (Picture: Getty)Lazio defender Stefan de Vrij is reportedly keen to join Manchester United in the summer transfer window.

De Vrij has made 252 appearances for Lazio since arriving at the club back in 2014 but the 26-year-old Netherlands international is out of contract at the end of the 2017/18 campaign.

The Serie A outfit have confirmed that De Vrij will move on in the summer and it’s understood the Premier League’s giants are ready to battle it out for his signature.

Liverpool had an offer rejected last summer and remain interested, while Arsenal are also understood to be weighing up a bid to sign the centre-back.

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However, according to The Daily Mirror, United are in pole position to land the highly-rated De Vrij.

It’s claimed De Vrij, who admits he is looking for a new challenge, is keen on working under Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford.

‘It has been a very difficult period full of speculations on my future to come to this point that nobody desired,’ he posted on Facebook on Tuesday.

‘Unfortunately we were not able to find a satisfying agreement for both parties due to various reasons.

‘I understand the disappointment of the Lazio fans very good and it hurts me leaving in this way.

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‘Even though I am very happy and I feel at home here, sometimes we need to get out of our comfort zone to achieve our desired goals.

‘I will be forever grateful to Lazio and to the fans for always being there for me, for the trust and opportunities given.

‘I have always tried to demonstrate that by giving the best of me and I will keep doing that until the end.’

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Manchester United and Liverpool handed major boost in pursuit of Stefan de Vrij

Manchester United and Liverpool are interested in signing Stefan de Vrij (Picture: Getty)Lazio have cleared the path for either Manchester United or Liverpool to sign Stefan de Vrij in the summer transfer window.

De Vrij has made 252 appearances for Lazio since joining the Serie A outfit back in 2014 but the 26-year-old has been heavily linked with a move to England in recent months.

Both United and Liverpool have been closely monitoring De Vrij’s contract situation and the Premier League giants have been handed a major boost in their pursuit of the defender.

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De Vrij’s current deal expires at the end of 2017/18 campaign and Lazio have confirmed that the highly-rated centre-back will become a free agent.

The Dutchman was in talks over a new deal at Lazio but the club’s sporting director, Igli Tare, revealed that these negotiations have ended.

Igli Tare confirmed that Stefan de Vrij will leave Lazio in the summer (Picture: Getty)

Jose Mourinho and Jurgen Klopp are battling to sign the Dutchman (Picture: Getty)‘It’s a decision made after many months,’ Tare said.

‘There’s a limit to everything.

‘We will say goodbye at the end of the season.’

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It’s understood United made enquiries over signing De Vrij in January, while Liverpool reportedly had a £30million bid rejected for the Netherlands star last summer.

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Abdoulaye Doucoure confirms Liverpool interest and talks up Arsenal transfer

Abdoulaye Doucoure was put on the spot on French television (Picture: Telefoot)Watford star Abdoulaye Doucoure has talked up a potential move to Arsenal ahead of the summer transfer window.

Doucoure signed for Watford back in February 2016 but the 25-year-old midfielder was immediately loaned out to Spanish outfit Granada for the 2015/16 campaign.

The Frenchman has come into his own at Vicarage Road this season, though, and has been the Hornets’ standout player in the Premier League, scoring seven goals and registering two assists.

Doucoure’s barnstorming form this term has seen him linked with a high-profile move away from Watford at the end of the season and the midfielder has responded to the recent speculation.

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Asked about interest from Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool, he told Telefoot: ‘It’s true that these clubs are interested.

‘But I’m at Watford for the moment and I want to finish my season well.’

En una entrevista en Téléfoot, Abdoulaye Doucouré jugador del Watford, reconoció el interés del Tottenham, Liverpool y Arsenal. Más tarde, en la entrevista, se le hicieron una serie de preguntas rápidas. A una de Tottenham o Arsenal dijo “Arsenal por Arséne Wenger” pic.twitter.com/EtYJxbboIJ
— Tom (@Tom_Paladecki) February 19, 2018

Doucoure was then put on the spot over which north London club he would prefer to join out of Arsenal and Spurs.

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‘Arsenal or Tottenham,’ Doucoure was asked during a rapid fire Q&A.

He replied: ‘Arsenal because of Arsene Wenger.’

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Chelsea preparing to use Michy Batshuayi to sign Manchester United and Liverpool target Christian Pulisic from Borussia Dortmund

Christian Pulisic has become a key player for Borussia Dortmund and USA (Picture: Getty)Chelsea are considering using Michy Batshuayi to beat Manchester United and Liverpool to Borussia Dortmund midfielder Christian Pulisic, according to reports.

Since leaving America in 2016 to sign for Dortmund, Pulisic has become a big player in the Bundesliga, attracting attention from a number of clubs from across Europe.

The United States international has been linked with Premier League giants Manchester United and Liverpool but reigning champions Chelsea have also emerged as potential suitors.

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The Daily Mail say Chelsea have monitored his progress closely over the past year and are keen to bring him to Stamford Bridge before the World Cup starts in the summer.

Dortmund are reluctant to lose Pulisic, 19, but could be tempted to strike an agreement with Chelsea if Batshuayi is incorporated into the deal.

Michy Batshuayi is enjoying a fine run for Dortmund (Picture: Getty)

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Belgian striker Batshuayi joined Dortmund on loan last month and has impressed for the German club, scoring five goals in three games, including braces against Cologne and Atalanta.

It is claimed Dortmund are already plotting a permanent move for the 24-year-old and their desire to secure his signature could give Chelsea an opportunity to sign Pulisic.

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The Blues refused to sell Batshuayi in January but Antonio Conte has shown little faith in the player since he arrived in west London from Marseille.

He failed to become a regular for the Italian boss last season, with Diego Costa impressing as the club’s first-choice striker, but scored the goal that clinched the Premier League title in May.

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Liverpool keeping close tabs on Tottenham star Victor Wanyama

Victor Wanyama is firmly on Liverpool’s radar (Picture: Getty)Liverpool are eyeing a transfer move for Tottenham midfielder Victor Wanyama, according to reports.

Wanyama has made 58 appearances for Spurs since joining the club from Southampton back in 2016 but the 26-year-old has received limited game-time under Mauricio Pochettino this season.

Emre Can has agreed a deal in principle to move to Juventus in the summer transfer window and Jurgen Klopp is scouring the market for reinforcements in defensive midfield.

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The Daily Mail suggests Liverpool are monitoring Wanyama’s situation and could move for the Kenyan at the end of the 2017/18 campaign.

It’s claimed both Manchester United and Chelsea are also keeping tabs on the powerhouse midfielder.

Steven Gerrard is an admirer of the Tottenham midfielder (Picture: Getty)

Jurgen Klopp is on the hunt for midfield reinforcements (Picture: Getty)Steven Gerrard claimed the Reds need a ‘monster’ like Wanyama in midfield ahead of the side’s 5-0 thumping of Porto.

‘I think Liverpool would benefit from a monster of a central midfielder, a holder,’ he said on BT Sport.

‘A Wanyama-type player who does sit in and is disciplined, and he would give more protection to the back four.

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‘Emre Can’s leaving, obviously Keita’s coming in. But Keita is a No 8, Keita is a dribbler, and a runner.

‘The way he (Klopp) plays he plays 4-3-3 more often than not. So you can accommodate a Henderson and a Keita.’

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Andreas Christensen would keep Virgil van Dijk out of the Chelsea team, says Frank Lampard

Virgil van Dijk joined Liverpool last month in a world-record deal for a defender (Picture: Getty)Frank Lampard insists Andreas Christensen would still be in the Chelsea side even if Antonio Conte had spent a world-record sum on Virgil van Dijk.

Dutch defender Van Dijk was linked with a number of clubs last summer – including Chelsea – but he eventually joined Liverpool in January for £75million, a record fee for a defender.

Lampard was coming to the end of his career at Stamford Bridge when Christensen joined the club’s academy as a teenager. The Chelsea legend says he always knew Christensen had what it takes to develop into a key player for the Blues.

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Speaking to the Evening Standard, Lampard said: ‘Even if Van Dijk had come in, the player Christensen is, he’d have handled anything.

‘You put a team around those players even at his age. He wouldn’t have had a problem whoever they signed.

‘I trained with him a fair bit when I was still there. We were all very aware of his abilities. He came over to join in senior sessions when he was 16 and was very impressive.

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Andreas Christensen has developed into a key player for Antonio Conte (Picture: Getty)‘Some young players were not ready for the increase in speed of the game, to make decisions and choices on the ball when they were invited to join in.

‘But even at that young age you could see he had a composure and an awareness about him that made him fit straight in.’

After joining Chelsea’s academy at the age of 15, Christensen was sent on loan to Borussia Monchengladbach and spent two productive years at the German club.

He broke into the Chelsea first-team at the start of the current campaign and has not looked back since, replacing David Luiz as the club’s first-choice centre back.

Frank Lampard has heaped praise on the young defender (Picture: Getty)More: Football

‘Chelsea take a lot of criticism for loaning players out but Andreas is a perfect example of how it’s done right,’ former England midfielder Lampard added.

‘It is massively important for the academy and the young players to see Christensen in the first team now. He is a great example for everyone.

‘The young players can learn from his application. He has shown if you do things right, apply yourself, you will get your chance.’

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The two reasons why Liverpool have pulled plug on world-record transfer move for Roma goalkeeper Alisson

Jurgen Klopp’s transfer plans at Liverpool have changed (Picture: Getty)Liverpool are unlikely to revive their interest in Alisson during the summer despite being heavily linked with a move for the Roma and Brazil goalkeeper over the past year.

Alisson, 25, is rated as one of the best shot-stoppers in Europe having impressed for club and country since leaving boyhood club Internacional two years ago.

Jurgen Klopp has expressed interest in signing another goalkeeper, with Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius prone to costly errors and failing to cement themselves as the club’s No 1.

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But Liverpool do not currently plan to launch a move for Alisson this summer, despite recent reports suggesting talks were underway.

The Liverpool ECHO say Alisson’s staggering price tag and Karius’ resurgence at Anfield means Klopp will likely turn to alternative targets if he does indeed look to sign a goalkeeper.

Alisson’s price has been touted at around £70million and Roma will not sell cheaply, having regretted striking a £37m deal with Liverpool for Mohamed Salah.

Alisson has impressed for Roma and Brazil (Picture: Getty)

Liverpool ahead of Manchester United in race to sign Deportivo La Coruna winger Pinchi

Pinchi is wanted by Manchester United and Liverpool. (Getty Images)Liverpool are leading Manchester United in the race to sign Deportivo La Coruna winger Pinchi, according to reports.

The 22-year-old made his La Liga debut last season but has made only one substitute appearance in the Copa del Rey this term.

Pinchi, whose full name is Oscar Garcia, is a regular for Deportivo’s B team and has scored six goals in 22 appearances this season.

The Sun claims that Liverpool, Manchester United and Tottenham have all expressed an interest in signing the winger, but it’s Klopp’s side who are ahead in the race as it stands.

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Jurgen Klopp is reportedly leading the race to sign Pinchi. (AP Photo)Pinchi’s contract with Deportivo expires this summer, which means he could leave for a small compensation fee.

The report also claims that Pinchi is being monitored by several Premier League scouts and has impressed representatives from United.

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Christian Pulisic must choose Liverpool over Manchester United, says Brian McBride

Christian Pulisic is being linked with both Liverpool and Manchester United (Picture: Getty)United States legend Brian McBride has urged Christian Pulisic to consider joining Liverpool or Real Madrid over Manchester United should the opportunity arise.

Pulisic, 19, who was a fan of United as a child, is being heavily linked with a move to the Premier League and has admitted he’s flattered with the reported interest from English clubs.

It’s understood Borussia Dortmund have slapped an £88million price tag on Pulisic as they prepare for an onslaught from Liverpool and United at the end of the season.

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McBride, who made his name at Fulham and Everton in England, believes his compatriot should favour a move to Anfield due to the exhilarating style of play Jurgen Klopp has brought to Merseyside.

‘It all depends. Choosing for him a club that would help him develop his style and his skillset is going to be a necessity,’ McBride said.

Brian McBride has urged the Dortmund star to consider a move to Liverpool (Picture: Getty)‘When you talk about some of these bigger clubs, they don’t necessarily play the same type of soccer they play in Dortmund.

‘The thing that’s always in the back of your mind is the desire to play at one of the biggest clubs – they are monster clubs, all of them are – and the fun of moving to a different club and working through the process of making it there.

‘I would make sure the club plays the style of soccer I play. If you’re going to Manchester United, you know you’re not going to be on the ball nearly as much as you are at Liverpool or Real Madrid.’

The American is on the radar of both Liverpool and United (Picture: Getty)However, McBride believes the appeal of Madrid could see United and Liverpool miss out on the American wonderkid.

He added: ‘The exciting part of going to Real Madrid, where every single player on the field around you is world-class.

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‘It’s a desire you sometimes can’t turn down.’

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