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Man City and Man Utd not in Alexis Sanchez bidding war, Wenger claims



Arsene Wenger was unable to offer an update on the future of Alexis Sanchez on Friday but the Arsenal manager did not deny suggestions Manchester United and Manchester City are both chasing the Chile international.

Sanchez is believed to remain a prime target for City after a switch to Etihad Stadium fell through late in the previous transfer window.

United have reportedly emerged as rival bidders in recent days and are said to be attempting to hijack the proposed move to Pep Guardiola's Premier League leaders.

"Look, honestly, I cannot tell you much more at the moment because nothing is really concrete," he said.

 Pressed on whether that meant United had also now expressed their interest, Wenger responded: "You conclude that. You could say at the moment – it's not that I don't want to inform you, I don't want to give you wrong information. Nothing is decided one way or another."

It was suggested fierce competition between City and United over the services of the former Barcelona forward could be to Arsenal's advantage, but the manager gave little indication an auction is underway behind the scenes.

He said: "A bidding war is always beneficial to a club who can take advantage of it, but we are not in that. Normally, we want him to stay until the end of the season, we will see."


Iniesta insists arrival of €160m man Coutinho won't retire him at Barcelona

Andres Iniesta insists the €160 million arrival of Philippe Coutinho at Barcelona will not “make me retire or kick me out”.

The La Liga giants have spent big during the current transfer window, with a transfer record smashed to land Ousmane Dembele over the summer broken again to bring in another creative influence.

Coutinho has been acquired from Liverpool to nail down a regular role in the present, but he is also considered to be a long-term successor to World Cup winner Iniesta.

The long-serving 33-year-old Barca skipper is aware of such talk but maintains that another quality addition has been made to complement him in Ernesto Valverde’s plans, not replace him.

Iniesta told Onda Cero on Coutinho’s arrival in Catalunya: “I'm a player for this club and I've always said that only the best can play for this club.

“That makes Coutinho one of the best. He's young and he has an innate talent, while Barcelona are a club where he can keep growing.

“There will never be a player that can make me retire or kick me out of here. At 33 years of age, that isn't the issue. Coutinho has come here to improve us."



Salah ignoring Real Madrid rumours to remain focused on Liverpool


Mohamed Salah has shrugged off links to Real Madrid, with the Liverpool forward ignoring the rumours as he is "happy at Anfield".

His fine form since arriving on Merseyside has sparked the transfer talk, with a 23-goal haul attracting admiring glances from afar.

Real Madrid are said to want Salah as their next 'Galactico' signing, as they prepare for another summer refresh at Santiago Bernabeu, but the 25-year-old insists he is paying little attention to gossip.

The Egypt international hopes that award will be followed by many more individual and collective prizes, with the talented frontman eager to force his way to the very top of the game.

Salah told Soccer Laduma: "Well, I have heard so many rumours it does not bother me any more.

"But I have been treated very well at Liverpool and right now, I belong to Liverpool and I am happy at Anfield.

"Let us leave it at that."


Man City boss Guardiola breaks another Premier League record with top award



 Pep Guardiola has made more Premier League history, with the Manchester City boss scooping a fourth successive Manager of the Month award.

The Catalan has been a dominant force in the English top-flight this season, with his team sweeping aside all before them.

City have opened up a 15-point lead at the top of the table, with the return of a domestic crown to the Etihad Stadium now considered to be a formality.

The history books have been rewritten as the unbeaten Blues have continued to march relentlessly forward, with Guardiola adding his own name to that roll of that honour after being recognised as the cream of the coaching crop for December.

City said in a statement released on their official website to honour the achievement of their manager: “It is the first time in the history of the monthly award that a manager has won it four successive times."


Ryan Giggs interviewed as Wales continue manager search


Ryan Giggs has been interviewed for the vacant Wales national team manager's job, according to Sky sources.

Wales have been without a manager since Chris Coleman stepped down in November to take over at Sunderland.

Giggs, a former captain of his country, told Sky Sports last month that Wales was one of the jobs which could tempt him back into football.

The 44-year-old earned 64 Wales caps during his distinguished playing career with Manchester United, who he managed for four games on an interim basis in 2014.

He subsequently worked as an assistant at United for two years under Louis van Gaal but left when Jose Mourinho took charge in the summer of 2016.

Giggs has been without a club since then, although he held meetings with Swansea about their vacancy in the autumn of 2016, before the Swans ultimately went in another direction.


French league suspend goal-line technology after "serious errors"



The French league (LFP) has decided to "immediately suspend" the use of goal-line technology after a series of glitches with the system, LFP director general Didier Quillot said on Thursday.

The decision covers all matches under the jurisdiction of the LFP, notably Ligue 1 and the French League Cup, and comes in the wake of two errors during Wednesday's League Cup quarter-finals.

"Last night unfortunately the GLT experienced two serious malfunctions in the Amiens-PSG match -- the GLT didn't make the referee's watch vibrate and it was the video assistant who awarded the goal -- and a second incident in Angers-Montpellier where the GLT wrongly caused the referee's watch to vibrate," Quillot explained.

"These two irregularities are unacceptable, especially as they occur just after we put GoalControl on notice," he said, adding that the system in its current state "was not reliable".

The LFP last month had warned GoalControl, the company that provides the GLT system, that its contract with the French league could be terminated if further problems arose



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