MAY 22 (Sporting Alert) — Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers expects Raheem Sterling to stay, Arsenal shoot down Aaron Ramsey reports, while Rafa Benitez can expect a call from Real Madrid on Monday.
Those are the major trendings in the world of football on Friday.
It starts at Anfield, where the future of Sterling continues to dominate the headlines. Reports suggested that the 20-year-old is pushing for a move away from Anfield with several suitors ready to pounce on the Liverpool wide-man.
But on Friday, Liverpool manager Rodgers said he expects the England international to see out the remainder of his contract.
Sterling was slated to have a clear the air talk with the Reds over his future on Friday, but the club revealed earlier this week they cancelled those meetings.
Rodgers did confirmed a meeting is on the schedule though, but it will take place after Sunday’s final game at Stoke City.
“Raheem has two years left and I expect him to see that two years through and continue to behave as immaculately as he has done,” he said.
“I don’t see Raheem being unhappy. Raheem’s representative made it very clear that they wanted to speak at the end of the season, so for us our concentration is really on the last game of the season, so I am sure talks will take place over the course of the summer.
“We want to resolve (contract) situation but it doesn’t change my approach to him. There is no problem there.
“Ownership have shown their strength in their time here. When they have had to show that strength with players they have done that.”
Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United are among the Premier League sides thought to be interested in signing Sterling. Bayern Munich and Real Madrid are also said to be showing interest.
Meanwhile, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has dismissed reports linking his star midfielder Ramsey to Spanish La Liga champions Barcelona.
The Sun and the Daily Mirror both reported that Barcelona were eyeing a move for the Welshman, who has been impressive for the Gunners in the last few seasons.
But Wenger, during his pre-match press conference ahead of Saturday’s final Premier League clash with West Brom – denied both stories, which suggested Barca were willing to pay up to £50 million for Ramsey.
In other EPL transfer news, the Manchester Evening News claims Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal is preparing to spend big again in the summer transfer window.
The report listed, forwards Gareth Bale and Harry Kane, in addition to midfielders Bastian Schweinsteiger and Radja Nainggolan, as targets for the Old Trafford outfits.
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho said at his press conference on Friday that he would love to keep Arsenal and Manchester United target Petr Cech at Stamford Bridge, but added he was unsure of the goalkeeper’s plans for next term.
Reports and indeed body languages, are suggesting the veteran shot-stopper will not be with the Blues come next season and he is interested in joining either Man United or Arsenal. Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid have both been linked with the 33-year-old.
In the meantime, Carlo Ancelotti time with Real Madrid looks to be coming to an end, with former Liverpool boss and current Napoli manager Rafa Benitez hotly tipped to replace the Italian, according to Sky Sports Spanish football expert Guillem Balague.
Balague said on Sky Sports News HQ: “Rafa can expect a call on Monday.
“Let’s just say that Ancelotti has not had any notification that he will stay or go and when that happens at this stage of the season it means the club is looking at another candidate, even though he has a year left on his contract.
“It is quite clear that Real Madrid have decided that Ancelotti is not the way forward unless the other candidates say no, especially Rafael Benitez, and at the moment it looks like Real Madrid are looking somewhere else for their manager this season.
“Real Madrid have actually made a call to Rafa’s agent and the answer was ‘come back on Monday as Rafael Benitez is actually working hard to finish the season with Napoli’ and that means that negotiations will start.
“And I don’t think they will go on very long in terms of financial or the length of contract.”