All the top stories and transfer rumours from Thursday’s national newspapers…


Manchester City have emerged as contenders to sign £50m-rated Leeds and England midfielder Kalvin Phillips in the summer.

Everton, Leeds United and Burnley are locked in a three-way battle to avoid the drop and a £55.6m shortfall in their accounts next season.

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Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has called time on his international career after confirming he will no longer represent Gabon.

English football’s Black referees have lashed out at plans to create a raft of new roles for which non-white officials have no chance of successfully applying.

The wife of Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan has rubbished claims that the German recently held talks with Real Madrid over a potential summer transfer.

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Manchester United have told Barcelona they won’t blow their budget on a £70m summer deal for Frenkie de Jong.

Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa will remain with Napoli next season after impressing on loan this year with the southern Italian club planning to activate his option to buy clause.


Leicester have enquired about Brighton’s £50m-rated goalkeeper Robert Sanchez due to doubts over Kasper Schmeichel’s contract situation.

Manchester City are considering a £30m move for Brighton left-back Marc Cucurella.

Aston Villa midfielder John McGinn is on Tottenham’s list of potential summer targets to bolster Antonio Conte’s squad for European football next season.

Argentina centre-back Lisandro Martínez has been added to the list of Manchester United targets ahead of Erik ten Hag’s arrival as manager.

The Premier League chief executive Richard Masters will be at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday with the genuine trophy with Manchester City in the box-seat to clinch the title on the final day, but an identical presentation team and replica will be at Anfield in case Jurgen Klopp’s side come from behind to win.

Blackpool defender Marvin Ekpiteta is being investigated by the Football Association over near-decade-old homophobic Twitter posts – despite having been forgiven for them by gay team-mate Jake Daniels.


Manchester United’s under-23 coach Neil Wood is the shock choice for the Salford City job.

Birmingham City are keeping tabs on impressive Canada boss John Herdman.

Southampton are eyeing a similar raid on Manchester City’s academy to the one they launched on Chelsea’s last summer, as they target Gavin Bazunu and Liam Delap.

Rio Ferdinand has tipped Steve McLaren to be an “important addition” at Manchester United as he “understands what it takes” to win.


A crackdown on pitch invasions after an assault on Sheffield United’s Billy Sharp will include the threat of partial and full stadium closures on English clubs.

Aston Villa defender Ezri Konsa has been ruled out for up to four months with a knee injury and will miss the start of next season.


The Russian gymnast Ivan Kuliak has been handed a one-year ban for wearing the letter “Z” supporting Russia’s invasion of Ukraine during an event in Qatar in March, the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) has confirmed.


Former Sunderland and Bristol City boss Lee Johnson is expected to be confirmed as the new Hibs boss on Thursday after Jon Dahl Tomasson priced himself out of the Easter Road job.

Smirking Ange Postecoglou has shut down any chance of him leaving Celtic after he was quizzed about a return to the Australian national side.

Rugby Park favourite Alan Power is closing in on a return to Kilmarnock following the expiry of his contract at St Mirren.

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