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Xhaka remains ‘key part’ of Arteta’s plans

Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka has returned for pre-season training and remains a “key part” of Mikel Arteta’s plans this season.

Roma made offers to sign the Swiss midfielder this summer – and while a transfer looked likely, Arsenal’s valuation was never met by the Serie A side.

Despite Roma’s efforts throughout the summer, it is believed a potential deal was off the table weeks ago.

While it may appear to be a U-turn by Arsenal, it is thought Arteta never wanted to let Xhaka go having initially convinced him to stay in January 2020.


Take a look back at some of Granit Xhaka’s highs and lows since signing for Arsenal in 2016

Xhaka started 29 Premier League games for Arsenal last season, the only outfield player who started more was Bukayo Saka (30).

Xhaka’s current Arsenal contract is up in 2023 and the club will want his future sorted one way or another soon with a contract extension not being ruled out.

Arsenal are interested in signing James Maddison from Leicester City but are still monitoring Martin Odegaard’s situation at Real Madrid, as they look to bring in an attacking midfielder this summer.


Dharmesh Sheth reports Arsenal are interested in Leicester’s James Maddison and are also monitoring Martin Odegaard’s situation at Real Madrid

The Gunners also remain interested in doing a deal for Sheffield United keeper Aaron Ramsdale with discussions over a fee continuing through intermediaries.

Sky Sports News reported earlier this week that there is an interest in Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham, with Arsenal preferring a loan move.

Meanwhile, Ben White’s £50m move from Brighton is expected to be announced imminently.

Roma score 10 in Mourinho’s first game

Jose Mourinho oversaw a goal-fest in his first game as Roma boss, with his new side hitting 10 goals past a lower-league Italian team in a friendly on Thursday.  

The former Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham head coach was appointed by Roma back in May, and was officially unveiled last week.

The Portuguese defended his recent track record during his first press conference, and on the pitch his reign got off to an ideal start.

Roma 10-0 Montecatini

Goals: C. Perez (9′), Mancini (19′), B. Mayoral (34′, 54′, 88′), Calafiori (35′), Santi own goal (40′), Zaniolo (61′, p.), Zalewski (80′), Diawara (86′)

Playing in Trigoria, Roma recorded a 10-0 victory in their first friendly of the season against Montecatini, who play in Serie D, which is split into nine regional divisions.

Borja Mayoral scored a hat-trick, with Carles Perez, Gianluca Mancini (not related to Italy’s Euro 2020-winning coach), Riccardo Calafiori, Nicolo Zaniolo, Nicola Zalewski and Amadou Diawara also on target in addition to a Santi own goal.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Nicola Zalewski and Borja Mayoral celebrate during Roma’s 10-0 pre-season win

“We leave Rome and Trigoria at the end of a wonderful and unforgettable day for which we thank the AS Roma for the hospitality and hospitality,” Montecatini said on Facebook afterwards.

“On to the next!” Roma defender Chris Smalling said on Twitter – their next friendly is against Serie B side Ternana on Sunday.

Roma in talks for Man Utd’s Telles

Roma are in talks to sign Manchester United left-back Alex Telles, according to Sky in Italy.

Telles was signed from Porto last summer for £15.4m to provide competition for Luke Shaw at Old Trafford.

However, the England international responded well to Telles’ arrival and had his best season in a United shirt after years of inconsitency, keeping the Brazil international to just nine Premier League appearances.


Jose Mourinho made a bold entrance at his first press conference as Roma manager when he interrupted the opening question to tear down a broken panel that was distracting him!

Roma, now managed by former United boss Jose Mourinho, are in the market for a left-sided defender after Leonardo Spinazzola picked up an injury while representing Italy at the European Championships.

Mourinho confirmed Spinazzola, who was named in the Euro 2020 Team of the Tournament, will be facing a few months out after rupturing his Achilles.


Jose Mourinho has defended his Premier League record, suggesting what is considered a ‘disaster’ for him is much better than many other coaches.

“We all feel sorry about the loss of Spinazzola for a few months but that is football and we have to be ready to start next week,” he said on Instagram at the start of July.

Telles, 28, signed a contract with United on Deadline Day in October last year until June 2024, with the option for an additional 12 months.

Rashford to have shoulder surgery – could be out until October

Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford is set to miss the start of the season

Marcus Rashford faces approximately 12 weeks out, once the Manchester United and England forward undergoes shoulder surgery later this month, the PA news agency understands.

The 23-year-old made five substitute appearances for the Three Lions during their run to the Euro 2020 final, where he hit the post from the spot in Sunday’s penalty shoot-out loss to Italy.

Rashford, who has been met with a groundswell of support in the wake of some sickening abuse, is now set to go under the knife to fix a long-standing shoulder complaint.

PA understands that the forward wanted the operation done straight after the Euros, but it will not be until later in July due to the availability of the requisite surgeon.

Patricio completes Roma move, Wolves to bring in Sa

Goalkeeper Rui Patricio has completed his move to Roma, with Wolves set to replace him with Olympiakos’ Jose Sa.

Roma will pay Wolves around £10.25m for the 33-year-old, who links up with Portuguese compatriot and new Roma boss Jose Mourinho.

Patricio, who had one year remaining on his contract at Molineux, joined Wolves from Sporting Lisbon in 2018 following their promotion to the Premier League and played more than 100 times for the club.

In a statement, Wolves technical director Scott Sellars said: “We would all like to thank Rui for everything he has done for Wolves during the past three seasons.

“He has been part of the best years of the club’s recent history, in terms of the success we have had, coming to us when we were newly promoted and helping the club to achieve two seventh place finishes.

“He’s been a fantastic servant to the club, but it’s a fantastic opportunity for him to experience a new club in a new league, and a good move for everybody involved.

“We certainly wish him the very best of luck at Roma.”

New Wolves boss Bruno Lage is set to move swiftly to replace Patricio, with the club close to finalising a £6.85m deal for Olympiakos keeper Sa.

Olympiakos goalkeeper Jose Sa is close to joining Wolves as Patricio’s replacement

The 28-year-old – a former Portugal U21 international – has been with the Greek side for the past three seasons, helping them win the league title in 2020 and 2021.

He started his career in his homeland with Maritimo, later joining Porto before moving to Olympiakos.

Jose: A disaster for me is something others have never achieved

Jose Mourinho defended his recent track record in the Premier League after being officially unveiled as Roma head coach on Thursday afternoon.

The Portuguese has signed a three-year deal with the Serie A club, marking his return to Italy after having led Inter Milan to an unprecedented treble of league, cup and Champions League titles 11 years ago.

Mourinho has prospered since leaving the San Siro, helping Real Madrid and Chelsea to La Liga and Premier League titles, while he won three trophies with Manchester United and helped Tottenham into last season’s League Cup final.

While he has had acrimonious departures from Chelsea, United and Tottenham – who axed Mourinho just days before their Carabao Cup final defeat to Manchester City – the 58-year-old insists his spells were an overall success.

“At my last three clubs I won the Premier League with Chelsea, I won three cups with Manchester United, I made it into the League Cup final with Tottenham,” he said at a press conference in the Italian capital.

“We finished 12th the year before and then we came sixth and qualified for the Europa League. What is considered a disaster for me is something that other coaches have never achieved in their lifetimes.”

Mourinho, who interrupted his first question to tear down a nearby panel that was noisily fluttering away in the background, is back in a job months after his Tottenham sacking and is relishing the chance to get started.

“There is a fantastic bond between Roma and the city and that brings a lot of responsibility with it and I feel that, but we are not here on holiday, we are here to work,” Mourinho added.

“The next challenge is always the most important, this is the next challenge so it is the most important.

“We are not going to change things when we are not yet aware of everything we have within the group. It is very important to get to know them.”