OLD TRAFFORD chiefs are gearing up for a busy summer.
With the Premier League pencilled to return on June 12, Man Utd are also looking forward to the transfer window where their No1 targets are reportedly Jadon Sancho and Jack Grealish.
Follow all the latest updates from Old Trafford below…
GOOD MORNING MAN UTD FANS
Yesterday was a busy day as SunSport exclusively revealed Premier League stars will be banned from spitting and ordered to wear snoods or masks as the full list of training rules were revealed.
Six Prem teams – including West Ham and Brighton – also emerged who are putting 'Project Restart' at risk because they do not want to play matches at neutral stadiums.
But it was revealed top flight games will be shown on YouTube for FREE when the season resumes.
And SunSport also exclusively revealed Wembley is back as a potential venue as club chiefs fight to return.
But the Premier League's foreign players are facing pressure from their families over alleged railroading into a return.
Their thoughts are in line with Ian Holloway who exclusively told SunSport he fears 'killing' players if football rushes to return from the coronavirus delay.
In transfers, Man Utd were joined by PSG in the transfer race for Wilfred Ndidi as Leicester battle to keep hold off their star midfielder.
Tottenham also joined the battle for Ivan Rakitic as Barcelona look to offload the midfielder to raise funds.
Real Madrid 'made first contact' with Eduardo Camavinga as they steal a march on United in the transfer race for the Rennes wonderkid.
And SunSport exclusively revealed the Red Devils have agreed to sign Joe Hugill from Sunderland but the £200k transfer has been held up because the teenager is banned from travelling for his medical.
The club also face a dilemma as on-loan keeper Dean Henderson could cost them £60m if Sheffield United reach the Champions League.
And Paul Ince reckons Man Utd need to axe Paul Pogba this summer as he is not good enough.
Elsewhere, Bruno Fernandes revealed the reason for his incredible Man Utd start… including the colour of their shorts.
The club also ended their hunt for a technical director with Ed Woodward delighted with Fernandes and Aaron Wan-Bissaka transfer business.
Ravel Morrison admitted Wayne Rooney's praise 'upset' him as he regrets not reaching his potential after his Man Utd youth days.
United will take action against Marcos Rojo after he was filmed smoking and playing cards during lockdown.
And finally, the Red Devils' plan to increase Old Trafford's capacity will reportedly have to wait until the end of next season because of coronavirus.
Manchester United's plan to increase Old Trafford’s capacity will reportedly have to wait until the end of next season because of coronavirus.
The Red Devils were planning on boosting attendances at home games by adding seats in the summer but they have been scuppered by Covid-19.
The club had planned to increase capacity after the installation of 300 disabled positions in 2006 reduced the overall capacity from 76,000 to 73,300 but this is now on hold, according to the Mail.
United were hoping to reconfigure existing areas to add more seats as stadium expansion poses significant logistical challenges.
In 2018, it emerged the Glazers wanted to increase Old Trafford’s overall capacity to a whopping 90,000.
“They may be able to argue that point. And they can always find an excuse not to make themselves available, citing an injury.
“But it’s also the case that there’s an extra issue with French, Dutch and Belgian players.
“Their families are asking why they are possibly going to be put at risk by the Premier League and their clubs when football has been stopped by the governments in their own countries.
“At the same time, they are looking at a higher death figure in the UK — and yet seeing football wanting to return soon.”
The Premier League’s foreign legion are coming under pressure from their families over allegedly being railroaded into playing again.
Premier League chiefs are determined to bring players and coaches inside the tent and ensure they have a full voice in restart discussions.
But there are particular issues with players from France, Holland and Belgium — where football has been cancelled until September.
One PL insider explained: “There’s an argument that all players might have a legitimate legal standpoint to say their health and safety is being compromised, or even threatened by being made to play…
HEND IN HAND – EXCLUSIVE
Manchester United face a moral dilemma over Dean Henderson if clubs agree to restart the Premier League.
They must decide whether to let the England Under-21 keeper stay at top-four rivals Sheffield United — and potentially help deny United a £60million-plus Champions League slot.
Prem chiefs discussed the loan situations of their players at Friday’s bumper meeting.
Whilst EFL clubs are understood to be in favour of extending loans if the player and their temporary side agree, the top flight demand the parent club must also be in favour of an extension.
Henderson is among eight players on loan to a Prem rival whose contracts expire on June 30.
While a vote next Monday is expected to see an agreement that on-loan players can stay to the end of the season, all owner clubs will have the right to veto the extensions.
WEMBLEY WAY OUT – EXCLUSIVE
Wembley is back on the agenda as a potential venue to complete the Premier League season.
The FA had offered both the national stadium and St George’s Park to be used from June to August.
Last week top-flight teams made clear they wanted only club grounds used as neutral venues.
Government officials are in talks with stakeholders and yesterday stressed playing under the Arch should be a serious option as it fits all the criteria.
As a result, Premier League clubs are expected to do a U-turn and consider the north-west London arena.
HOLLOW THREAT – EXCLUSIVE
Ian Holloway has warned that football could end up “killing” players if they rush back and he reckons if players do not die, then it could kill the bus driver taking them to games.
He said: “You see a film about zombies and everybody runs away from them but if football kicks off too early we will be running straight at them.
“We go too early with this and players might end up dying.
“It’s madness to even be thinking about playing when the dangers — according to the Government — are as bad if not worse than when this all started. It’s not only players at risk.
“I don’t want to be responsible for the death of the bus driver taking us to a game. How would I be able to look his wife and family in the face? I couldn’t live with myself.”
RON THE WAY BACK
Cristiano Ronaldo has left Madeira to return to Italy with his family after nearly two months on his native island.
The 35-year-old was chauffeur-driven to the airport named after him so he could board his Gulfstream G200 Galaxy on Monday evening with his girlfriend Georgina Rodriguez and four children.
The £20million plane departed just after 6pm local time and is due to reach Turin in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
Cristiano is expected to have to self-isolate for a fortnight on club orders before resuming training with the rest of the Juventus squad ahead of a possible return to Serie A football.
Weekend reports claimed his return plans were being frustrated by Spanish airspace problems.
But his private jet landed on Sunday in Madeira to take luggage and three staff including a bodyguard to Italy before returning on Monday evening to the island.
Manchester United legend Andy Cole has launched a kidney research charity after emotionally opening up about his own transplant nightmare.
The Red Devils icon suffered kidney failure in 2015 after contracting a virus while on tour in Vietnam as a club ambassador.
In an emotional Instagram post, the 48-year-old wrote: “I didn’t ask to have kidney failure, so learning how to cope with the physical and mental challenges caused by medication after my transplant has been the toughest battle I’ve ever faced.
“That’s why I wanted to set up a research fund with Kidney Research UK to help others who are having a hard time, probably now more than ever.
“Whatever you can spare would be amazing and help fund research into improving lives. Together, let’s change the game. You can make a donation through the link in my bio.”
View this post on Instagram
I didn’t ask to have kidney failure, so learning how to cope with the physical and mental challenges caused by medication after my transplant has been the toughest battle I’ve ever faced. That’s why I wanted to set up a research fund with @kidney_research_uk to help others who are having a hard time, probably now more than ever. Whatever you can spare would be amazing and help fund research into improving lives. Together, let’s change the game. You can make a donation through the link in my bio #TeamAndy #AndyColeFund #Let’s change the game
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“I had a fight on my hands and Alicia will have a fight on her hands to get into the first team.
“You don’t have a voice at that age; you had to show these first-team players how good you are, that, technically, you can play.
“You have to possibly be a bit aggressive with them. Smash them about, that’s what we had to do.
“You had to make an impression on first-team players if you want to be a first-team player.
“They’ll surely respect that way, rather than being a cocky little s***.”
Paul Scholes has turned netball coach, telling talented daughter Alicia to “smash them about but don’t be a cocky little s***”.
Alicia, 18, joined the England youth setup two years ago and was expecting to train with league champions Manchester Thunder’s senior team, only for coronavirus to intervene.
Scholes Snr told The Times: “The more I think about it, our pathways are so similar.
“We had six really good players who were all the same age as Alicia is [at Man Utd].
“Manchester Thunder just won the league and had a great start to this season — they’ve got the best players and the best coach and I had exactly the same…
Some Premier League games are set to be shown on YouTube for FREE when the season restarts following the coronavirus lockdown.
Under a proposal currently being discussed, all 92 matches still due to be played are to be broadcast on Sky Sports, BT Sport or on YouTube.
It is hoped the 2019-20 season can still be finished in a jam-packed seven-week summer schedule
But with games set to be played in front of empty stadiums, football bosses want fans to be able to watch EVERY game live.
Under the plans, most games will be shown on main broadcasters Sky Sports and BT Sport.
Amazon will have a selection of other matches and with no games due to be shown live on the BBC or ITV, YouTube is being discussed as a free-to-air option.
Bruno Fernandes has revealed the reasons for his scintillating start at Manchester United – the supporters, the stadium and the colour of the SHORTS.
The midfielder told the club website: “It is difficult to say one thing because at Manchester United, going out at Old Trafford, everybody knows about the stadium and the atmosphere.
“But when you have the kit of Manchester United, all red, with your black shorts, and you feel the atmosphere of the stadium, and you feel everything, you feel the support of your fans, it is something special.
“For me, for example, when I came from Sporting, I arrived and I was in Manchester for two days. I played against Wolves and they already had a song for me.
“I had just arrived and the supporters already gave me the support I need to be confident and be at home.
“I think this is the most important thing, that atmosphere and love you feel from your supporters.”
GIVE US A HUG
Manchester United teen target Joe Hugill will have to wait to complete his dream move from Sunderland – because of the coronavirus – reports Alan Nixon.
Hugill's deal has been agreed between the clubs and he will head to Old Trafford after reported links to Arsenal and Tottenham.
United will pay around £200,000 initially with extras if Hugill, 16, makes strides and cracks the first-team.
Personal terms have also been thrashed out and he will sign his first pro contract on decent wages after rejecting terms at the Stadium of Light.
However Hugill is not allowed to travel to Manchester or have a medical until lockdown is lifted.
There should be no snags, but the Sunderland starlet will have to be patient before completing his transfer.
CAM AND GET IT
Real Madrid have reportedly made the “first contact” with Eduardo Camavinga as they steal a march on Manchester United in the transfer race for the Rennes wonderkid.
According to AS, the Bernabeu's chief scout Juni Calafat, has been in talks with the Angolan's entourage.
The midfield maestro only signed a new deal last summer to tie him down until 2022 but the report says he is “seriously considering” parting ways with the French club in the next transfer window.
Los Blancos boss Zinedine Zidane is said to be a huge fan of the teen with the player believed to be a top priority as the Spanish outfit look to sign a defensive midfielder.
Rennes finished third in the top flight and in a Champions League spot, after Ligue 1 was cancelled following the coronavirus crisis.
But the youngster believes he is ready to take the next step and switch to the Spanish capital following his scintillating form in France.
PAUL THE OTHER ONE
Paul Ince wants Manchester United to make a decision soon on whether or not to sell Paul Pogba.
Attitude problems and disappointing performances have led to some Red Devils figures wanting the Frenchman to move on.
Ince told Paddy Power: “What’s disappointing is the way he’s acted, his behaviour and performances reflect that he’s been unsure about his decision.
“You compare that to Bruno Fernandes, and his arrival at United, and it’s crazy. He’s come in and hit the ground running fairly instantly, winning over the fans in the process.
“Perhaps if Fernandes hadn’t come in and done as well as he has done, maybe Ole Gunnar Solskjaer might try and keep Pogba. But now, he might be thinking if I can get the right money for Pogba, then I can let him go.
“The decision needs to be made, and quickly, because we can’t have another season of the Pogba circus. He wouldn’t even get in the side at the moment.”
Cristiano Ronaldo will not retire until he has beaten Pele's goalscoring record, according to Gary Neville.
Ronaldo, who remains in phenomenal physical shape at the age of 35, is credited with 725 goals as a professional.
His jaw-dropping tally saw him become Real Madrid's all-time leading goalscorer, and he banged in 118 for Manchester United.
But it is some way short of Brazil icon Pele, who according to records scored 1,281 goals during 1,363 appearances.
Neville told Sky Sports: “It’s an obsession, an absolute obsession with scoring goals, applying yourself every day, being the fittest he can possibly be.
“I genuinely believe he wants to beat Pele’s numbers, that’s where I think he’s at in his mind.”
SO INTER YOU
Paul Pogba is the ideal man to take Inter Milan to the next level, claims former defender Giuseppe ‘Beppe’ Bergomi.
A former captain and one-club man who won Serie A at the Giuseppe Meazza, Bergomi wants to see the Manchester United man signed to land trophies for Antonio Conte’s Inter “immediately”.
He told La Gazzetta dello Sport: “If you have the money to sign him, you have to do it immediately.
“It is true that in the last few seasons he has not been up to par, but he would return to a football he knows, he would have no problems with acclimatisation and could immediately make his mark.
“Beyond the technical qualities, with the physique he has, in Serie A he would still be dominant and there are few players around like him.
“Conte can bring out the best in him as he did in the past. It would be a big signing for Inter to try and win immediately.”
ALWAYS WANT MORR
Ravel Morrison has admitted it’s “amazing” that Wayne Rooney talked up his talents in a recent newspaper column.
The former Manchester United forward described the midfielder as better than Paul Pogba as they rose through the academy.
But Morrison’s career tailed off and he has now opened up on the sadness at hearing Rooney’s comments, noting: “He’s probably one of the best ever to come out of England, if not THE best.
“But it makes you a bit upset as well because I could have gone a bit further, I should have gone a bit further and I’m still hoping to go further. But the likes of Pogba and Jesse are great players.
“I knew I had ability and going into Manchester United was a nice environment to go into every day, world-class players, just enjoyable. If I could go back through my life again there would be a lot of things I'd change.
“I grew up at United, I was there from the Under-9s. I'd skip training some days, and I would wake up and don't know why I'd done it, but I'd skip it. And it's hard to get me off the training field now.”
WE GO AGAIN
The draw for the second ePremier League Invitational has been made…
Sixteen top-flight sides will be represented by famous faces in the FIFA 20 tournament with funds raise for the Players Together NHS initiative.
A preliminary round will kick things off tomorrow with cricket star Jofra Archer in action for the Red Devils.
Games will be streamed live and United are drawn to face John Egan’s Sheffield United if they progress.
Here’s the first round schedule:
3pm – West Ham vs Spurs (Spencer Owen v Ryan Sessegnon)
4pm – Burnley vs Arsenal (Charlie Taylor v Arsenal)
5pm – Newcastle vs Man Utd (Rolando Aarons v Jofra Archer)
6pm – Leicester vs Bournemouth (James Maddison v Callum Wilson)
RAK EM UP
Manchester United and Tottenham are set to battle it out for Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic, according to reports.
The Catalan giants are prepared to cash in on the Croatian veteran this summer to raise funds of their own.
According to Mundo Deportivo, the Premier League pair believe they can lure Rakitic to England.
The coronavirus pandemic will leave Barca cash-strapped this summer meaning they will be forced to sell a number of stars to bring in players of their own.
Both United and Tottenham are in the market for a new midfielder and know they won't need to break the bank to sign Rakitic.
PAT ON THE BACK
Patrice Evra has revealed his utter joy at winning the Premier League for the first time.
As part of the 2006/07 title winning side, the Frenchman has recalled on the United podcast how he celebrated with a less enthusiastic Mikael Silvestre.
He said: “‘I was like a kid! I remember I was in Mikael Silvestre’s house and we were watching the game, I think it was Chelsea playing and if they lost, we were champions.
“I start jumping around, and Mikael was looking at me thinking, ‘What is he doing?’ because he’d already won three leagues and I was screaming and he told me to calm down. I think your first one is so amazing.
“I’ll be honest, when you start winning the third one, the fourth and the fifth, you celebrate but not the same way. You celebrate because of the cameras and stuff, but it’s not the same. Ferguson taught us all to be like a robot.
“I don’t think I was a human being playing for Manchester United. When we won games, when I was doing something good, I wasn’t pleased. For me, it was something normal.”
BRU-THER IN ARMS
Bruno Fernandes believes the word that best describes him is “warrior”.
Several reports have noted how the Manchester United star is a vocal dressing room figure.
And he told a club Q&A that he considers every opponent his biggest “enemy” while on the pitch.
Fernandes answered: “Warrior, because for me every game is a battle. You need to go out to the game and just understand you need to beat your opponent.
“With all of the respect, because you need to have respect for your opponent, but you need to beat them. If you don't beat them, they will beat you.
“It doesn't matter who is on the other team. If it is a friend, because I have friends playing in the Premier League, I don't care. At that moment, I will be the biggest enemy they can have.”
Jens Lehmann has revealed Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson’s fury after a tense 0-0 draw between Arsenal and Manchester United in 2003.
A missed Ruud van Nistelrooy penalty in the final seconds led to a famous confrontation between the title rivals.
Football365 quote the German as telling beIN Sports: “I remember after that game I wasn’t looking into the eyes of my teammates I was looking into the eyes of Arsene.
“He was having Alex Ferguson at a short distance [clenching his fists]. He grabbed him and each of them were very angry with each other and almost started to fight with each other. It wasn’t about me or the players it was more about the manager.
“I came in late and I remember that there were two crowds of people confront each other and I spilt some of my water onto them, accidentally of course. It was funny to watch, I wasn’t involved.
“You always expect me to be involved but I wasn’t in this situation. We were talking [the following Monday] but we were waiting for fines to be handed out and of course to United.”
BELL OF THE BALL
Former Manchester United striker has stated he has no regrets about his time at Old Trafford.
Although the Frenchman didn’t cut the mustard in the Premier League, he is content that he did not let football dominate his life.
Now creative director of lower-tier Paris side Red Star, Bellion stated in a wide-ranging interview with The i: “I don't regret it because it made me who I am right now – that passion I had for many things.
“Many football players only think about football. They don't go to the museum. They don't care about this, they don't care about that. It's like being a robot of football.
“And, honestly, if you tell me to do that for one, two or three years, until you get the Ballon d’Or, but you will have to sacrifice your free time, I would not trade it. I love freedom too much. I love culture too much. I don't regret the kind of person I am.
“Sometimes I maybe have regrets about making a mistake in football, but life is an adventure and who I am now, at 37, is the result of what I was before.
“Everybody in football has their own character. A lot of people thought I was either a weirdo, or too kind, or I was this, or I was that, but I'm not going to change just for the glory of football.”
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