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EU moves closer to debt action as Italy angles for compromise

ROME/BRUSSELS ( ) – The European Union moved closer on Tuesday to taking disciplinary action over Italy’s growing debt, as authorities in Rome made tentative steps to avert a procedure that could saddle the country with large fines and alienate investors.

Envoys of EU governments agreed that action was warranted, a confidential document seen by showed, confirming the assessment of the European Commission that Italy is in breach of fiscal rules by failing to cut its huge public debt.

The Commission’s outgoing president, Jean-Claude Juncker, said Italy was “moving in an unsound direction” and risked a procedure that could last years.

Italy and the Commission have been at loggerheads on fiscal issues since a euroskeptic coalition government took office in Rome a year ago armed with ambitious spending plans.

However, in a rare show of unity after successive bouts of infighting in recent months, the coalition’s leaders agreed overnight on a willingness to address the EU’s concerns.

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said after they met that they would work together to avert the disciplinary action.

“Our shared goal is to avoid the infringement while safeguarding economic growth, employment, as well as tax cuts,” added Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini of the far-right League.

Italy’s debt has risen steadily from a pre-financial crisis low of 104% of domestic output in 2007 and now stands at 132%, second only to Greece’s within the euro zone. The Commission forecast it will rise further to 135% next year.

Brussels also wants Rome to cut its structural deficit, which excludes one-off revenues, to make its debt more sustainable.

Related CoverageItalian deputy PM Di Maio says coalition meeting went well

EU governments agreed the disciplinary procedure would be avoided if Rome made new offers, two European sources said.

‘NO TAX INCREASES’

But, emboldened by the League’s strong showing in last month’s European elections and in local polls, Salvini has made tax cuts a priority and has repeatedly taken aim at Brussels, calling for an overhaul of EU fiscal rules.

He insisted on Tuesday that “there won’t be any budget correction nor tax increases.”

Finance Minister Giovanni Tria, a technocrat, played down the events in Brussels, saying the final decision would lie with the bloc’s finance ministers.

He ag上海夜生活论坛reed a budget correction was not necessary, though one would be implemented if needed, and said Italy’s deficit would be lower than initially forecast due to lower expenditure.

But that may not be enough to stave off EU action.

Brussels will now intensify talks to obtain more fiscal commitments from Rome.

But if no compromise is found, the EU Commission could recommend the opening of the procedure as early as June 26, one official said. EU states would have then to agree to formally launch it in their last meetings before the summer break on July 8-9. The procedure could also lead to unprecedented fines.

To complicate the picture, Rome is also scrambling to avoid a sales-tax increase worth 23 billion euros, which is due to kick in automatically next year unless the money can be found elsewhere.

Both the League and its coalition partner 5-Star Movement have ruled out a sales tax hike, but have yet to spell out how they will cover the gap.

G20 finance chiefs express concern over risks from ‘intensified’ trade conflict

FUKUOKA, Japan ( ) – Group of 20 fi上海夜生活论坛nance leaders on Sunday said that trade and geopolitical tensions have “intensified”, raising risks to improving global growth, but they stopped short of calling for a resolution of a deepening U.S.-China trade conflict.

After fiery negotiations that nearly aborted the issuance of a communique, finance ministers and central bank governors meeting in southern Japan repeated tepid support for a rules-based multilateral trading system.

“Global growth appears to be stabilizing and is generally projected to pick up moderately later this year and into 2020,” the G20 finance leaders said in a communique issued as the meetings in Fukuoka closed.

“However, growth remains low and risks remain tilted to the downside. Most importantly, trade and geopolitical tensions have intensified. We will continue to address these risks and stand ready to take further action.”

It also said that G20 finance leaders had agreed to compile common rules by 2020 to close loopholes used by global tech giants such as Facebook and Google to reduce their corporate taxes.

The communique also contained pledges to increase debt transparency on the part of borrowers and creditors. Another priority is sustainable infrastructure development, an issue brought into sharper focus by concerns that China’s massive Belt and Road infrastructure drive was saddling poor countries with debt they can’t repay.

DROPPED CLAUSE

However, the final language excluded a proposed clause to “recognize the pressing need to resolve trade tensions”, which was dropped from a previous draft debated on Saturday.

The deletion, which G20 sources said came at the insistence of the United States, shows a desire by Washington to avoid encumbrances as it increases tariffs on Chinese goods. The statement also contains no admissions that the deepening U.S.-China trade conflict is hurting global growth.

International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde emphasized that “the first priority should be to resolve the current trade tensions” while working to modernize international trading rules.

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The IMF this week warned that, while growth is still expected to improve this year and next, the U.S.-China tariff war could cut 0.5 percent from global GDP output in 2020, about the size of G20 member South Africa’s economy.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Saturday said he did not see any impact on U.S. growth from the trade conflict and that the government would take steps to protect consumers from higher tariffs.

Mnuchin met People’s Bank of China (PBOC) Governor Yi Gang on Sunday in the first meeting of high-level U.S. officials in a month, but it produced no immediate result. Mnuchin described the meeting as “constructive” and “a candid discussion on trade issues”, but offered no further detail.

The PBOC said in a statement that the two finance officials “exchanged views on global economic and financial situation, G20 issues, as well as topics of mutual interest”.

The Buenos Aires G20 summit in December 2018 marked the start of a five-month trade truce between the United States and China to allow for negotiations to end their intensifying trade war. But those talks hit an impasse last month, prompting both sides to impose higher tariffs on each other’s goods as the conflict nears its first anniversary.

TRUMP-XI SUMMIT

The widening fallout from the U.S.-China trade war has tested the resolve of the group to show a united front as investors worry if policymakers can avert a global recession.

The bickering over trade language has dashed hopes of Japan, which chairs this year’s G20 meetings, to keep trade issues low on the various agendas at the finance leaders’ meeting.

Mnuchin said that U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping would meet at a June 28-29 G20 summit in Osaka, but the meeting has not been confirmed by China.

The planned meeting was said by Mnuchin to have parallels with the two presidents’ Buenos Aires meeting on Dec. 1, when Trump was poised to increase tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods.

Trump took that step in May and will be ready to impose similar 25% tariffs on a remaining $300 billion list of Chinese goods around the time of the Osaka summit.

At the Buenos Aires meeting, the G20 leaders described international trade and investment as “important engines of growth, productivity, innovation, job creation and development. We recognize the contribution that the multilateral trading system has made to that end,” their communique said.

The leaders in that communique called for reform of World Trade Organization rules that they said were falling short of objectives and pledged to review progress at the Japan summit.

Ex-Trump adviser Flynn talking to Congress about testifying in Russia probe: lawyer

((In March 30 item, corrects spelling of Kislyak in paragraph 3))

WASHINGTON ( ) – Donald Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, has offered to testify before congressional committees probing potential ties between the Trump campaign and Russia but wants protection against “unfair prosecution,” his lawyer said on Thursday.

“General Flynn certainly has a story to tell, and he very much wants to tell it, should the circumstances permit,” said a statement from Flynn’s lawyer, Robert Kelner.

Testimony from Flynn could help shed light on the conversations he had with Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergei Kislyak last year when he was the national security adviser for Trump’s presidential campaign.

Kelner said discussions had taken place about Flynn’s availability to testify with officials of the intelligence committees of both the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives. Both committees are investigating allegations of Russian meddling in the U.S. election campaign last year as well as possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russians.

Flynn was forced to resign as Trump’s national security adviser in February for failing to disclose talks with the Russian ambassador before Trump took office about U.S. sanctions on Moscow and misleading Vice President Mike Pence about the conversations.

Questions remain about the scope of the discussions and what other contacts took place between other Trump advisers with the Russians. Earlier this week, the White House disclosed that Trump’s son-in-law and White House senior adviser, Jared Kushner, met executives of Russian state development bank Vnesheconombank, or VEB, in December.

U.S. intelligence agencies have said Russ上海夜网ia hacked emails of senior Democrats and orchestrated the release of embarrassing information in a bid to tip the presidential election in favor of Trump, whose views were seen as more in line with the Moscow’s.

Russia has denied the allegations. Trump has dismissed suggestions of links with Moscow as Democratic sour grapes for losing the election.

‘WITCH HUNT ENVIRONMENT’

The Wall Street Journal, citing officials with knowledge of the matter, reported on Thursday that Flynn had sought immunity from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the House and Senate intelligence panels in exchange for his testimony. The newspaper said he had so far found no takers.

The House denied the Journal report. “Michael Flynn has not offered to testify to HPSCI in exchange for immunity,” committee spokesman Jack Langer said in a statement.

The FBI declined to comment. The Senate committee did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Kelner’s statement did not mention the FBI.

He said Flynn “is now the target of unsubstantiated public demands by Members of Congress and other political critics that he be criminally investigated.”

Kelner said Flynn would not “submit to questioning in such a highly politicized, witch hunt environment without assurances against unfair prosecution.”Independent Senator Angus King, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, told CNN he could not confirm the Journal report, but “if that turns out to be the case, that’s a significant development I believe because it indicates that he has something important to say.”

Trump may discuss secretary of state job with critic Romney: source

NEW YORK ( ) – U.S. President-elect Donald Trump planned a Saturday meeting with Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee and fierce Trump critic, and may discuss whether he should be a candidate for secretary of state, a source familiar with the meeting said on Thursday.

Trump already has a lengthy list of potential candidates for the post of top U.S. diplomat, including former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton, U.S. Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, who met Trump on Thursday.

Trump, a former reality TV star, has shown a flair for the dramatic in his deliberations over his Cabinet, saying only he knows who “the finalists” are.

Corker told CNN on Wednesday he was “in the mix” for the position but that Trump might pick someone who was closer to him during the presidential campaign. He met on Thursday in Washington with Vice President-elect Mike Pence.

Trump’s expected meeting with Romney amounts to an olive branch of sorts to one of his sharpest critics. Romney, who in a speech in March called Trump “a phony, a fraud,” urged Republicans to vote for anyone but the New York real estate magnate while the party was picking its presidential nominee.

Trump, in turn, used harsh rhetoric at times during his campaign to dismiss Romney as a failure who blew a chance in 2012 to defeat Democratic President Barack Obama, whom Trump felt was a w上海夜网eak opponent.

The source told that a broad discussion was expected during the meeting and that discussion about the secretary of state position was possible. The source had said earlier his understanding was that the meeting would occur on Sunday.

Asked about the meeting, Trump senior adviser Kellyanne Conway suggested it was still being arranged. “We’re working on it,” she said.

‘TRUMP WILL MAKE DECISION’

“I think it’s good that the president-elect is meeting with people like Mr. Romney,” U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama, one of Trump’s closest confidants and a potential nominee for defense secretary, told reporters at Manhattan’s Trump Tower.

Sessions sounded far from certain Romney would be offered a job.

“There are a lot of talented people that he (Trump) needs good relationships with. And I think Mr. Romney would be quite capable of doing a number of things. But he will be one of those, I am sure, that’s reviewed. Donald Trump will make that decision,” Sessions said.

When Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, opted out of running for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, people close to him suggested that serving as secretary of state might be appealing to him if a Republican won the presidency.

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A steady stream of potential Trump administration hires made their way through the lobby of Trump Tower to meet with either Trump or officials close to him.

All indicated a willingness to serve, such as Jeb Hensarling, a Texas Republican who is chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee. He is a potential treasury secretary in the Trump administration.

“I stand ready to help the president in any capacity possible. I’ve got a great position in public policy today, if he wants to talk to me obviously, about serving somewhere else, we’ll look at serving somewhere else,” he told reporters.

Congress should act on ‘scandalous’ fantasy betting: Reid

WASHINGTON ( ) – The top Democrat in the U.S. Senate called on Congress to examine fantasy-sports betting services on Tuesday after reports that an employee with access to insider information placed bets in the unregulated multi-billion-dollar industry.

“There’s absolutely scandalous conduct taking place through those programs, fantasy sports,” Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid told reporters.

“I think it also should be a warning-shot to everybody that online gaming is a real scary thing and we ought to look at all of it,” said Reid, who is a former Gaming Commission head in Nevada, a hub of the industry.

Reid’s statement raises the prospect of congressional scrutiny and possibly new regulations for websites such as DraftKings and FanDuel that have drawn millions of users who pay a fee to compete for daily prizes by assembling teams that accumulate points based on how the players did in actual games.

Meanwhile, Representative Frank Pallone and Senator Bob Menendez, both New Jersey Democrats, asked the Federal Trade Commission to look into the fantasy scandal.

Both companies confirmed on Monday that a DraftKings employee won $350,000 from a $25 entry fee in an American football contest. According to a trade group, the employee inadvertently released player data – a practice that experts liken to insider-trading.

The two privately held companies say they temporarily banned employees from playing daily fantasy sports.

The House of Representatives could hold hearings this fall, said Pallone, the top Democrat on the Energy and Commerce Committee. The Republican-controlled committee is looking into the issue, a spokesman said.

The issue could draw the attention of conservatives like House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, who has pushed to outlaw other forms of online gambling.

Critics say daily fantasy sports services allow fans to bet with a frequency akin to gambling and led to the rise of the two industry leaders.

So far, fantasy sports services have escaped the restrictions that have outlawed sports betting in most states.

The Fantasy Sports Trade Association has spent $80,000 over the past year to defend its interests in Washington, lobbying records show. The group declined to comment.

Online gambling foes who are pushing for a nationwide ban on casino-style Internet gambling are not yet targeting fantasy sports services. But they may raise th上海夜生活网e DraftKings incident as another example of perils of online betting as they make their case, according to a former congressional aide now working to ban online gambling.

Obama, Putin spar over Syria

UNITED NATIONS ( ) – Russia and the United States agreed on Monday to look for a diplomatic end to the Syrian civil war but clashed over the central question of whether Syrian President Bashar al-Assad should retain power.

During a 90-minute meeting, U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed that their armed forces should hold talks to avoid coming into conflict in Syria after a Russian military buildup there over the last several weeks.

The United States, France and allied countries are bombing Islamic State militants, who have exploited power vacuums to seize parts of Syria and neighboring Iraq as part of a stated goal of creating an Islamic caliphate.

The reinforcement of the Russian military presence in the country, including the addition of tanks and warplanes, has brought fears of inadvertent or accidental clashes among the forces as well as U.S. questions about Moscow’s main goal.

Speaking after his meeting with Obama, Putin told reporters Russia was pondering what more it could do to support Syrian government and Kurdish forces against Islamic State militants.

“We are mulling over what we would really do extra in order to support those who are in the battlefield, resisting and fighting with terrorists, ISIS (Islamic State) first of all,” Putin said, ruling out deploying Russian ground troops.

“There is (an) opportunity to work on joint problems together,” Putin said of his talks with Obama, which a U.S. official described as “businesslike.”

A senior U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told reporters after the meeting: “The Russians certainly understood the importance of there being a political resolution to the conflict in Syria, and there being a process that pursues a political resolution.”

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U.S.-Russian ties have been deeply strained by Moscow’s March 2014 annexation of Crimea from Ukraine and its support of pro-Russian separatists in the eastern part of the country.

Earlier in the day, relations between the two leaders appeared frosty – they clinked glasses at a lunch, but Obama had a piercing look as Putin smiled – and they laid out starkly differing positions toward Assad in their addresses before the annual United Nations General Assembly gathering of world leaders.

Obama said he was willing to cooperate with Russia and Iran to try to end the four-year civil war in Syria, in which at least 200,000 people have died and millions have been driven from their homes. But he described Assad as its chief culprit.

In contrast, Putin said there was no alternative to cooperating with Assad’s military to fight Islamic State militants, and called for the creation of a broader international anti-terrorist coalition. This appeal may compete with the coalition that the United States has assembled to fight Islamic State.

“The United States is prepared to work with any nation, including Russia and Iran, to resolve the conflict,” Obama, who spoke before Putin, told the world body. “But we must recognize that there cannot be, after so much bloodshed, so much carnage, a return to the prewar status quo.”

OBAMA: NO ROLE FOR TYRANTS

Obama did not explicitly call for Assad’s ouster, and he suggested there could be a “managed transition” away from the Syrian president’s rule, the latest sign that despite U.S. animus toward Assad it was willing to see him stay for some period of time.

Obama dismissed the argument that authoritarianism was the only way to combat groups such as Islamic State, saying: “In accordance with this logic, we should support tyrants like Bashar al-Assad, who drops barrel bombs to massacre innocent children, because the alternative is surely worse.”

Putin differed, suggesting there was no option but to work with Assad, a longtime ally of Russia.

“We think it is an enormous mistake to refuse to cooperate with the Syrian government and its armed forces who are valiantly fighting terrorism face-to-face,” Putin said in his speech.

“We should finally acknowledge that no one but President Assad’s armed forces and (Kurdish) militia are truly fighting the Islamic State and other terrorist organizations in Syria,” he said.

French President Francois Hollande and Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu both rejected the possibility of allowing Assad to stay.

BITTER PILL

In voicing a willingness to deal with Iran and Russia, both backers of Assad, Obama was openly acknowledging their influence in Syria and swallowing a somewhat bitter pill for the United States.

Tehran has armed the Syrian government and, through its backing of Lebanese Hezbollah fighters, has helped Assad combat rebels seeking to end his family’s four-decade rule.

U.S. officials say they believe Putin’s buildup of Russian forces in Syria mainly reflects Moscow’s fear that Assad’s grip might be weakening and a desire to shore him up to retain Russian influence in the region.

They also see it as a way for Putin to try to project Russian influence more widely, a goal he appeared to achieve on Sunday with Iraq’s announcement that Russia, Iran, Syria and the Iraqi government were sharing intelligence on Syria.

Despite t上海夜网heir differences over Syria and Ukraine, the United States and Russia have worked with Britain, China, France and Germany, a group known as the P5+1, to secure a nuclear deal with Iran this summer.

The same group could also take up the issue of Syria, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, said after a meeting of the six foreign ministers and Iran on Monday evening.

Trump’s trade war cost U.S. economy $7.8 billion in 2018: study

WASHINGTON ( ) – President Donald Trump’s trade battles cost the U.S. economy $7.8 billion in lost gross domestic product in 2018, a study by a team of economists at leading American universities published this week showed.

Authors of the paper said they analyzed the short-run impact of Trump’s actions and found that imports from targeted countries declined 31.5 percent while targeted U.S. exports fell by 11 percent. They also found that annual consumer and producer losses from higher costs of imports totaled $68.8 billion.

“After accounting for higher tariff revenue and gains to domestic producers from higher prices, the aggregate welfare loss was $7.8 billion,” or 0.04 percent of GDP, the researchers said.

The study was authored by a team of economists at the University of California Berkeley, Columbia University, Yale University and University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) and published by the National Bureau of Economic research. www.nber.org/papers/w25638

Having dubbed himself the “tariff man,” Trump pledged on both the campaig上海夜网n trail and as president to reduce the trade deficit by shutting out unfairly traded imports and renegotiating free trade agreements.

Trump has pursued a protectionist trade agenda to shield U.S. manufacturing. Washington and Beijing have been locked in a tit-for-tat tariff battle for months as imposing unilateral tariffs to combat, and Trump has imposed tariffs that have roiled the European Union and other major trading partners.

The authors said while U.S. tariffs favored sectors located in “politically competitive” counties, the retaliatory tariffs imposed on U.S. goods have offset the benefits to these areas.

“We find that tradeable-sector workers in heavily Republican counties were the most negatively affected by the trade war,” the researchers said.

Howe left frustrated after being held by West Ham

Eddie Howe, the Bournemouth coach, admitted that he was a bit frustrated as his side conceded an almost immediate equalizer against West Ham United and they were held to a 1-1 draw.

Ryan Fraser scored the first goal of the game in 71st minuted for the home side but it wasn’t enough to win the match anyway as Javier Hernandez equalized just two minutes after that the clash ended 1-1. It means that the Cherries haven’t been beaten for five matches in a row but despite that, Howe was a bit disappointed while being in charge of the club in his 100th Premier League game.

The talented British coach spoke about this match as he said, according to Sky Sports: “We didn’t start the game particularly well, we came under pressure early but did well to defend that and not concede. We grew into the game and scored a great goal from our perspective, and looked a real threat on the counter-attack in the second上海夜生活论坛 half. The frustrating thing is the timing of their second goal.”Top 5 Real Madrid players who are succeeding on a loan Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – We need to talk about the Top 5 Real Madrid players who are currently succeeding away from the club and are currently on a…

He also insisted that it was probably caused by the lack of concentration: “There was no time to enjoy it or build on it, which is frustrating. I don’t think the lads switched off or that it was a concentration issue, it was just the fact we didn’t win two big headers outside our box. It’s a frustration because at that stage I thought we were the better team and we were looking to build upon a great goal.”

In the end, Eddie Howe claimed that he was pleased by the performance of his two substitutes, Joshua King and Junior Stanislas: “Junior’s pass for our goal was sublime. He’s got the quality and makes us play very good football, so we’re delighted to have him back.  Josh has been such a key player for us in recent times, hopefully, those guys can give us a real lift.”

Francis believes that Sanchez can be the United’s missing part

Gerry Francis, the former Quee上海夜生活ns Park Rangers player, insisted that Alexis Sanchez is the “finished article” the Red Devils desperately needed to buy to become one of the greatest world’s clubs again.

The former QPR player spoke about Sanchez’s skills as he said, according to Sky Sports: “Sanchez is a real goalscorer, he’s talented and he’s aggressive around the box and he makes things happen, he can pull teams through. It’s [about] the present, you’re looking to win trophies and looking to win competitions and sometimes you need to buy and have the finished article and Sanchez is certainly that.”

He also shared his thoughts on his effect on the squad: “It just makes them as a squad that much stronger. Certainly a much bigger goal threat with Sanchez. He’s proven year in and year out that he can score goals. From Jose Mourinho’s point of view, it gives him another very, very strong arrow for his bow.”Top 5 Real Madrid players who are succeeding on a loan Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – We need to talk about the Top 5 Real Madrid players who are currently succeeding away from the club and are currently on a…

Peter Odemwingie, the former West Brome striker, also believes that Sanchez will have an immediate impact: “If you look back 10 years when Manchester United were probably the most successful team in Europe the average age was much higher and they were a better team.  Of course, all credit to the younger boys they are doing really well but it’s a more natural process to slowly groom them and not just make them key players. I think a bit of maturity is needed to go back to the heights they were before.”

In the end, Odemwingie said that Sanchez will make the everyone’s stats better: “They [younger players] took their chances well but stats should be what they rely on, and if Sanchez comes in and his stats are better – as much as you think they are the future of the club – they have to be patient and wait for the time they are ripe enough for such a massive club.”

Pochettino urged Kane to play even better

Mauricio Pochettino, the Tottenham coach, admitted that he believes that Harry Kane, his side’s best striker, can continue in his improvement and will start to play even better than he has done so far this season.

The Englishman managed to score a hat-trick in his team’s latest 3-0 away win against Burnley and he proved himself to be a key player for the Spurs once again. His coach admitted that the young England international is very important for his system of play but he also claimed that he can see a space for a possible improvement and he hopes that Kane will not stop with his progress.

The former Southampton coach spoke about his star striker as he said, according to ESPN: “I think he still can improve. He’s 24, I think the player arrives at their best at 27, 28, 29, depending on how professional you are. But Harry Kane, if he keeps that mentality, keeps working hard every day in the training sessions and never changes that mentality, he can play until he wants to.”Opinion: Martin Odegaard is perfect for the Premier League Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – Given how much he’s been rejected by Real Madrid, we are convinced that Martin Odegaard is perfect for the Premier League.Martin Odegaard is finally…

He continued by adding that Kane can break Shearer’s record: “Of course the record of Alan is fantastic. He was a fantastic player, but Harry is doing so well. I think Alan was consistent during 10 years scoring goals and you need to show massive respect because it was amazing what he did. Now Harry is doing well, we hope for Tottenham, for him, for everyone that loves the club, tha上海夜生活网t every season he scores 50 or more than 50.”

In the end, Mauricio Pochettino insisted that his team have to start being consistent: “We need to keep the momentum, to try to win again, to be consistent. If we want to fight at the end for big things we must try to be consistent. But I’m sure that the team is focused, like we showed today. It was tough last week against City, but the team is in a good way.”

Arthur: No deal with Barcelona

Gremio midfielder Arthur claimed he has signed no deal with FC Barcelona, despite meeting the Catalan side

The 21-year-old prospect says that “first contact” has been made with Ernesto Valverde’s men but him signing a contract is still far away, despite speculations of a potential transfer move in January.

Arthur has been heavily linked with a transfer to the La Liga giants, especially after the midfielder was spotted wearing a Barca shirt last week. That was enough to get speculators going.

After that incident, many suggested that a deal had already been completed between Gremio a上海夜生活nd Barcelona, yet the 21-year-old midfielder has denied that is the case.

“On the Barcelona issue, they really talked to me. We had a meeting, but I want to clarify that we have nothing agreed or defined,” Arthur told Esporte Interativo.Opinion: FC Barcelona needed to end the internal war Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – After a victory at Camp Nou, we believe that FC Barcelona did well by ending the internal war between players and the board ASAP.Those…

“It’s a club that I admire a lot. It was only first contact for them to get to know me and my family, and for me to meet them, let’s take it easy. There is nothing definite, but we did have a conversation.”

“I’m a Gremio player. My agent did not negotiate any contract. That did not happen. Any deal has to be good for me and good for the club, which is my home, where everything started. I arrived with 14 years, I am a Gremio fan at heart, my blood is blue,” he added.

The midfielder was named as the outstanding player in the Copa Libertadores final, which many suggest could be a sign of him getting interest from more big European clubs.

Despite the interest of other club giants, such as Manchester United, Barcelona reportedly went on to submit a €35 million bid for the youngster, but the Brazilian club have refused the amount. They probably know some clubs will pay even more for the youngster’s signature.

AC Milan prepare January bid for Aguero

AC Milan are prepared to further invest in transfers and are monitoring the situation of Sergio Aguero.

Pep Guardiola has long been targeting his former player Alexis Sanchez, whose contract with Arsenal is set to expire next summer. In fact, Manchester City were very close to secure the transfer of Sanchez last summer, when they had a €70m bid accepted. However, the move collapsed after Arsenal failed to sign Thomas Lemar as a replacement.  The Citizens are now confident that a €20m bid in January will persuade the Gunners to allow the Chilean to move to Emirates.Report: West quit Milan because of the Mafia George Patchias – Taribo West claims he quit AC Milan because of the Italian mafia.The retired Nigerian international defender Taribo West claims he left Milan almost 19…

And now AC Milan are set to look into how they can benefit from Sanchez’s move to Manchester City. According to Daily Mail, the Rossoneri will enquire about Sergio Aguero in January, confide上海夜网nt that they could lure the Argentinian away from Etihad.

Sergio Aguero is on track to become Manchester City’s all-time top goalscorer. The Argentinian scored seven goals in eight matches this season and is very close to break the record of Erik Brook, who scored 177 goals for the Citizens. However, the 29-year-old is currently out of action after suffering a broken rib in a car crash in Amsterdam at the end of last month.

Sarri: “Manchester City are the best in Europe”

Napoli head coach Maurizio Sarri has declared the Citizens as ‘clearly the best team in Europe’ right now.

The Partenopei will be facing Manchester City in England for the first match between the two clubs in the Champions League. Both sides have been enjoying an incredible start of the season, with each of the clubs taking the first seat in their respective leagues.

Despite Napoli’s remarkable start of the season, their manager noted that his team is taking on the ‘best club’ in Europe right now.

“They win all their games with at least five goals,” Sarri pointed out in his pre-match Press conference, according to Football Italia.

“The last time they didn’t score a goal was August, and they’re also strong in the defensive phase. It will be very hard.

“They seem unbalanced, but they’re not they always press the ball with a lot of men. I’ve seen important things from City, though I haven’t watched上海夜网 too many matches as I didn’t want to spoil other evenings.Willian warns Chelsea of ‘difficult’ Ajax threat Andrew Smyth – Willian admits Chelsea will need to prepare well for their next Champions League clash at Ajax after overcoming Lille OSC 2-0 on Wednesday.

“They’re clearly the best team in Europe.

The Napoli coach also took the time to thank his colleague Pep Guardiola as the Catalan had nothing but applause for Sarri.

“All I can do is thank him and congratulate him, because he’s clearly the best Coach in the world.

“30 years ago [Arrigo] Sacchi left his mark on football, and in a few years we’ll realise how important Guardiola was.

“If someone like him compliments you, you can only be happy.”

Neville: “Arsenal showed how good they could be”

It was a bit surprising result as Arsenal managed to win the north London derby against Tottenham and after a 2-0 win, there is just a one-point difference between these two sides.

The former Manchester United defender, Gary Neville, is certain that Arsenal just finally showed their full potential as they were the dominant side in this crucial match against their main rivals. Shkodran Mustafi scored the winning goal and hugely criticized Alexis Sanchez added the second – Tottenham were completely eliminated by the Gunners and they didn’t show barely anything in this game.

Gary Neville hadn’t thought even before the match that Arsenal was going to lose this one as he said, according to Sky Sports: “I didn’t think Arsenal would lose before the game being honest because I think after international duty, to go away from home at 12.30pm, is not easy. But that’s as good as I’ve seen Ar上海夜生活senal, it really is. I wondered after ten minutes would they be able to keep it up? Is it just a bold start that would fizzle out? But it was a really, really good performance. Overall my assessment of the game today was Arsenal were absolutely fantastic from number one to 11. There wasn’t a poor performer.”Top 5 Premier League players in September’s last weekend Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – A fresh Premier League fixture just ended, which means we can talk about the Top 5 best players of September’s last weekend.After a fresh…

He evaluated the match further on: “From minute one, they pressed onto that Tottenham back three, made them anxious and made them nervous. A very good back three as well by the way. I have to say I thought the intent from that front three, supported well and sustained by Granit Xhaka and Aaron Ramsey, won them the game in terms of setting the tone.”

In the end, the Red Devils legend added: “If you think about the teams I played in and you’ll have seen it yourself over the years when the best players in the team are setting the tone and working hard and making challenges the rest of you follow and come with you.”

Cahill warns Manchester City

Chelsea defender Gary Cahill says Manchester City will have a tough time keeping their form up, and believes Chelsea can still catch the league leaders

The league leaders’ unbeaten start does not scare the centre-back, who is confident his side can reduce the points deficit over the campaign, GOAL reports.

Cahill believes talking about Manchester City as champions so early in the season is premature, and is confident the Blues have enough time to catch up with City once their performance falls.

“They’ve started off full steam ahead and that’s great for them, but we’re not even at Christmas yet, so let’s just hold fire and see how they get on,” the centre-back told Chelsea’s website.

“They look fantastic at the moment and we have taken a fair bit of criticism at times this season, but we’ve had three clean sheets on the bounce in the league now, it was a great performance and we’ve got a long way still to go.”Top 5 Premier League players in September’s last weekend Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – A fresh Premier League fixture just ended, which means we can talk about the Top 5 best players of September’s last weekend.After a fresh…

When Cahill was asked about Chelsea’s performance in their 4-0 victory over West Brom this weekend, the defender claimed he was delighted with how they have played.

“I have to admit it was a superb performance from us, from every single player, and collectively we are very happy,” the 31-year-old said.

“I felt we pl上海夜生活ayed some good football, we kept the ball when we needed to and we scored goals. We saw a bit of everything from us, so performance-wise it was very, very good.”

“I’m sure they found it very difficult to play against us, we always seemed to have an option to get out of trouble and there was a lot of composure on the ball, which allowed us to keep it for long periods,” Cahill explained.

Chelsea is now on a four-game winning streak as they are about to face Qarabag away from home in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Real need someone like Mbappe

Former Madrid star Steve McManaman thinks Real need a player like Mbappe, and not Harry Kane

Steve McManaman says Los Blancos should be looking for a young prospect like Kylian Mbappe. The former 上海夜生活Real star doesn’t like the idea of spending €200 million on Tottenham striker Harry Kane.

Real Madrid continue to be linked with Spurs’ outstanding attacker, Harry Kane. The English striker has already been called as the “successor” of Cristiano Ronaldo.

Kane’s impressive form for both Spurs and England has made him Real Madrid’s target. The English striker has won two Golden Boot awards in the last two seasons in London and is likely to win the third one at the end of this season.

McManaman, though, feels that Real would be better advised signing a player with potential to unlock rather than paying over the odds for a proven performer, GOAL reports.

The former Real midfielder spoke to MARCA before the highly-expected game between Tottenham and Real Madrid at Wembley:  “I would prefer [to sign] a young boy like Kylian Mbappe.”

“It’s very difficult to sign Kane. The price of footballers today is crazy,” McManaman said.Explaining FC Barcelona’s war between players and board Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – We need to shed some light into what is actually happening between FC Barcelona’s players and the board of directors.We need to address this…

The 45-year-old retired midfielder said he can’t understand Kane’s price: “You need to pay €200 million for Kane and I do not understand those figures.”

While McManaman feels a big-money move for Kane makes little financial sense, he does believe that the 24-year-old would find it easy to settle in Spain, GOAL continues.

Not many players are willing to make the move from the Premier League to any Spanish clubs, because of the huge differences in for example culture and language.

McManaman added: “In England the clubs are very professional, and it is a great place to be.”

The 45-year-old said Kane wouldn’t have problems with getting around in Madrid, and Real players who speak English could easily help him.

“Kane can stay in London because he is happy with his family. But if he moved to Real Madrid, surely he wouldn’t have problems adapting.”

“Cristiano Ronaldo, Luka Modric and other players speak English and can help him. Madrid is also a beautiful city,” he concluded.

Barcelona monitoring Leverkusen trio

Barcelona are looking for solutions to boost their squad options and they have put three Bayer Leverkusen players on their list.

Barcelona had a good start of the season, finding themselves at the top of La Liga table, five points clear of rivals Real Madrid. However, the Catalans are still looking for reinforcements, after a summer in 上海夜生活网which their transfer business was far from impressive.

Having lost Neymar to PSG for €222m, the Catalans spent the rest of the transfer window looking for worthy replacements. And although they have been linked with some very big names, they have only brought in Ousmane Dembele from Borussia Dortmund. Furthermore, the French forward got injured two weeks into the season and will be unavailable for the rest of the year.Pique sends a warning message to the board after Barcelona scrape the win against… Nedim Maric – The turmoil at the beginning of the season caused a lot of concerns at Barcelona.Shaky start of the season for Barca saw them get…

Although reports suggest that Barcelona have not given up at the thought of bringing Philippe Coutinho from Liverpool, the Catalans are also looking for alternatives. The Spanish newspaper Sport writes that Ernesto Valverde’s side are currently monitoring three Bayer Leverkusen players: Jonathan Tah, Julian Brandt and Leon Bailey.

Jonathan Tah is a 21-year-old centre back who has attracted a lot of interest lately, especially from Premier League clubs. Leon Bailey (20) and Julian Brandt (21) are both wingers that can play on any side of the attack. Brandt is a German international and has also attracted interest from major clubs, Bayern Munich monitoring his progress in Bundesliga.

The three Leverkusen players could prove to be a worthy alternative to Philippe Coutinho, as they will probably require around the same transfer fee expenditure, but would in turn provide much more options in the squad. Furthermore, all three of them are very young and have a lot of playing time ahead of them, as well as margins for further development.

UEFA will not investigate Manchester City

The Citizens will not be under UEFA Financial F上海夜生活论坛air Play investigation.

After the close-season reached its end, La Liga president Javier Tebas insisted that Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain “funding by state-aid distorts European competitions and creates an inflationary spiral that is irreparably harming the football industry”.

The European governing body of football is already investigating the French club, but they announced Manchester City will not be taken into account.Pep Guardiola rules out January signings for Manchester City Andrew Smyth – Pep Guardiola revealed that Manchester City don’t have the cash to go out and buy new players in January despite his limited defensive options.

“There is no investigation into Manchester City with regards to FFP regulations. Any reports mentioning such an investigation are unsubstantiated.” reads a statement by UEFA.

Both clubs spent enormous amount of money during the summer transfer window. The Parisiens bought Neymar for 222 million euros from Barcelona and added Mbappe to their ranks on a loan deal, that will become permanent next year for a fee of 165 million pounds.

Meanwhile Manchester City spent around 215 million pounds overhauling their defensive options with the signings of Kyle Walker, Ederson Moraes, Benjamin Mendy and Bernardo Silva. However, Guardiola’ side sold several players, which left their net spending at around 130 million pounds, which seems quite normal, taking into account the current situation of the transfer market.

Everton with a class act

The club has announced they will host a charity football match in respect to Bradley Lowery as they aim to support the Bradley Lowery Foundation to help children with cancer.

The Toffees will host a celebrity match on 3 September, after previously donating £200,000 to the charity set up by Bardley’s family.

Little Bradley passed away on 7 July after a tough battle with cancer. He was diagnosed with neuroblastoma when he was just 18 months old.

Bradley’s parents said the support their family received was fantastic. The people from Goodison Park formed a special relationship with Bradley during Everton’s match at Sunderland in September 2016 and then when he was a guest at Merseyside.Kean thrilled with Everton support Nedim Maric – The young Italian striker moved from Juventus this summer to try and leave his mark on the Premier League.Among the Italian racism crisis, which…

Everton Chairman Bill Kenwright stated to the club’s website:

“I didn’t know him for long bu上海夜生活t from the second he walked out onto the pitch with his beloved Sunderland against us, I felt an overwhelming need to support him.

“He was the loveliest lad – still an imp, but with the biggest heart.”

Bradley’s family has established the Bradley Lowery Foundation, which aims to help other families with children with cancer. Everton’s charity game will help raise funds and support the good cause.

Raiola: Ibrahimovic is fine, he\u2019s received so many offers, from the US and beyond

The agent suggested the Swede wants to make a return to Serie A but has other offers as wellWritten by – Nikolay Nikolov, June 19, 2017.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s agent Mino Raiola says the striker would have already been back at AC Milan if Adriano Galliani was still on the board, but the player has many other offers to consider.

Ibrahimovic is a free agent after Manchester United released him, following his recovery from a cruciate ligament injury suffered at the end of last season.

Although the 35-year-old will be out of the pitch for few months, he has already been strongly linked with a move to the US and Italy.

“Ibra is fine, he’s received so many offers, from the US and beyond,” Raiola told Gazzetta Dello Sport.Kane: Spurs out of excuses after shock Carabao Cup exit Andrew Smyth – Harry Kane concedes that Tottenham only have themselves to blame following a shock Carabao Cup exit at the hands of Colchester United.

“He’s certainly not going to Napoli. Milan haven’t asked me about him. With Galliani, he’d already been there,” he added.

Raiola mentioned the situation around Ibrahimovic while talking about the rising dispute between his client Gianluigi Donnarumma and AC Milan, as the 18-year-old goalkeeper told the club he will not renew his上海夜网 contract.

Raiola also mentioned another one of his clients – Blaise Matuidi. According to the experienced agent, Paris Saint-Germain’s star has been on the radar of some big clubs.

“Clubs have asked me about Matuidi, like Inter and Juventus. We’ll see,” he said.

“The Bianconeri pulled out a year ago due to political reasons. Maybe this time,” he added.