Manchester City were firm favourites to complete a sensational move for Cristiano Ronaldo until a fiery Pep Guardiola hinted the deal was off on Friday.

Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri confirmed hours earlier that Ronaldo had informed him of his intention to leave the Serie A club.

Ronaldo's agent Jorge Mendes had reportedly approached City, who missed out on signing Harry Kane after the England captain elected to stay at Tottenham.

Reports on Thursday claimed personal terms between City and Ronaldo had been agreed and the transfer seemed to be edging closer when the 36-year-old was pictured leaving Juve's training ground, seemingly for the final time.

However, in a remarkable twist, Ronaldo's former club and City's rivals Manchester United have now reportedly entered the running and, in his pre-match news conference ahead of this weekend's clash with Wolves, Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer suggested a deal could happen.

While Solskjaer's comments became public, Guardiola faced the media prior to City's clash with Arsenal on Saturday, and he claimed Ronaldo would ultimately make the final call on his future.

Shortly after Guardiola's news conference had concluded, the BBC said City had pulled out of the deal altogether. 

"I cannot say much. Harry Kane announced that he's continuing with his club, an exceptional club like Tottenham," Guardiola told reporters.

"Cristiano, I think he's a Juventus player, I cannot add anything else. All I can say in these three or four days is that everything can happen.

"But in my personal view, there are a few players, and I think Cristiano is included and [Lionel] Messi of course, that they decide where they want to play. In that position [attack], right now, this is my feeling, I am more than delighted with the squad that I have and I think it will stay the same."

Asked if he would be able to coach Ronaldo after spending so much time hailing his former player Messi as the world's best, Guardiola added: "I say the same, Cristiano will decide where he wants to play, not Manchester City, not myself, there are many things but right now it looks far, far away.

"This is a difficult press conference, tomorrow we have an incredibly important game ahead of us, but now it is about other terms, other issues.

"We are incredibly grateful to have enjoyed the best two players we have seen probably in the past 20, 30 years, like these two guys have done, in world football, we can only say thank you.

"The Argentine and the Portuguese guy were amazing in every single season, in different clubs, especially Messi just at Barcelona but now in France. What they have done, we will not watch something similar in the future.

"I'm incredibly happy with the squad I have. More than satisfied. We are the same guys except one player has left, Sergio [Aguero], and Jack [Grealish] arrived. I am focused on the players I have. These type of players decide.

"Messi, he decided himself where he wanted to play. He decided Paris, he went to Paris. These players decide. They know the law, their goal. After that there are situations I cannot control, it's not my business. I am focused on what we have to do and the players we have right now."

The Kane saga has dragged on throughout the transfer window. Multiple reports have claimed Tottenham turned down a City offer for their talisman back in June, a bid which was said to be in the region of £100million.

Guardiola, however, said otherwise.

"The club did absolutely everything. We didn't talk with Tottenham – not even one offer – because they did not want to negotiate," Guardiola said.

"When one team doesn't want to negotiate, there is nothing to say. It is understandable so Tottenham they didn't want to talk, we didn't talk, that's all.

"Maybe they opened the door and they say we want for Harry Kane £200m. We are not going to pay £200m, for one reason, we do not have it, that's why we do not do it.

"We tried to open the door to negotiate and the big master of negotiations Mr Daniel Levy, he knows everything, so we could not do it. He [Kane] is a Tottenham Hotspur player and I wish him all the best in the last years of his career doing well in London."

Guardiola also confirmed City – who responded to an opening-day defeat to Spurs by thrashing Norwich City last time out – would be once again without Kevin De Bruyne for the meeting with Arsenal.

Tottenham will face Rennes, Vitesse and NS Mura in the group stage of the inaugural Europa Conference League.

Spurs, with the help of a double from Harry Kane, secured qualification for UEFA's new third-tier club competition with a 3-0 win over Pacos de Ferreira on Thursday.

The presence of Kane, who will be staying at Tottenham despite Manchester City's long-standing interest, is sure to make Spurs one of the favourites to win the tournament.

Nuno Espirito Santo's side were placed into Group G, and have avoided too many arduous journeys, with a trip to Slovenia to face Mura – a team only formed in 2012 – the longest trip in store.

Roma, coached by former Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho, are the tournament's other favourites. The Serie A club will face Zorya Luhansk, CSKA Sofia and Bodo/Glimt in Group C.

The Europa League group stage has been trimmed to 32 teams, with Napoli arguably the headline act.

FA Cup winners Leicester City have been drawn in Group E alongside the Italian giants, as well as Spartak Moscow and Legia Warsaw.

The Premier League's other representatives – West Ham – were drawn in Group H, in which they will face Dinamo Zagreb, Genk and Rapid Vienna.

Steven Gerrard's Rangers were placed into Group A with Lyon, Sparta Prague and Brondby, while Scottish rivals Celtic are in a difficult-looking Group G which includes Bayer Leverkusen, Real Betis and Ferencvaros.

Group E pits Lazio, Marseille, Galatasary and Lokomotiv Moscow up against each other in what promises to be a thriller, while Monaco, PSV, Real Sociedad and Sturm Graz will battle it out for progression from Group B.

The first matches will take place on September 16, with the group stage of both competitions concluding on December 9.

Europa League group stage draw in full:

Group A: Lyon, Rangers, Sparta Prague, Brondby
Group B: Monaco, PSV Eindhoven, Real Sociedad, Sturm Graz
Group C: Napoli, Leicester City, Spartak Moscow, Legia Warsaw
Group D: Olympiacos, Eintracht Frankfurt, Fenerbahce, Royal Antwerp
Group E: Lazio, Lokomotiv Moscow, Marseille, Galatasaray
Group F: Braga, Red Star Belgrade, Ludogorets, Midtjylland
Group G: Bayer Leverkusen, Celtic, Real Betis, Ferencvaros
Group H: Dinamo Zagreb, Genk, West Ham, Rapid Vienna

Europa Conference League group stage draw in full: 

Group A: LASK, Maccabi Tel-Aviv, Alashkert, HJK Helsinki
Group B: Gent, FK Partizan, Flora, Anorthosis
Group C: Roma, Zorya Luhansk, CSKA Sofia, Bodo/Glimt
Group D: AZ Alkmaar, CFR Cluj, Jablonec, Randers
Group E: Slavia Prague, Feyenoord, Union Berlin,
Group F: Copenhagen, PAOK, Slovan Bratislava, Lincoln Red Imps
Group G: Tottenham, Rennes, Vitesse, Mura
Group H: Basel, Qarabag, Kairat, Omonoia

Tottenham head coach Nuno Espirito Santo insisted Harry Kane is committed to Spurs and has nothing to prove after failing to secure a move away from the Premier League club.

After confirming he will not be leaving Tottenham this month, Kane marked his first start of the season with a brace as Spurs overturned a 1-0 first-leg deficit by topping Pacos de Ferreira 3-0 en route to the inaugural Europa Conference League group stage.

Kane – under contract until June 2024 – had been tipped to join Premier League champions Manchester City, however, a transfer did not materialise.

Following his two-goal haul in London on Thursday, Nuno praised the star England international forward.

"He played good, he scored, he had good movements, he helped the team in possession, out of possession kept his shape, helped recover the ball," Nuno told reporters.

"He is still improving. But playing is the best way for all players to improve, to compete and the edge of the game is what takes players beyond their limits and that is what we expect from all of them."

Asked if Kane is motivated to show his commitment to Tottenham, Nuno replied: "My answer to that is that I see Harry every day since he joined us, every day. He doesn't have to prove to anyone. He's committed. You can see.

"All the situations that happen is part of the past, let's look and move forward, but I see him every day. I see him today in the training sessions.

"I saw him today at the end of the game, now it is time to recover. He is one more that will help us.

"I think we can expect much more from everybody, from all of us. We are starting the competition really early. I think we're doing ok. We realise there's a long way to go and a lot of room to improve, all of us, all of us."

Harry Kane marked his first start of the season with a decisive brace as Tottenham overturned a 1-0 first-leg defeat with a 3-0 win over Pacos de Ferreira to secure a place in the inaugural Europa Conference League.

Kane has played only 18 minutes domestically in 2021-22 following a heavily interrupted pre-season that was dominated by uncertainty surrounding his future, but after seemingly accepting Spurs' refusal to sell him, he was back in the starting XI and off the mark for the campaign.

The visitors' aggregate lead stood for just nine minutes as the lively Bryan Gil capped his home debut with a fine assist to tee up Kane and the England striker doubled his tally just after the half-hour mark.

Nuno Espirito Santo's side subsequently produced a controlled and professional display after the interval, with a Vitorino Antunes own goal ultimately ending Pacos de Ferreira's chances of a late turnaround.

It always looked destined to be a long evening for the away side and Spurs' intensity inspired the opener, as Harry Winks won back possession and fed Bryan in behind the defence, his inch-perfect cut-back allowing Kane to level the aggregate score.

Bryan found Kane again in the 34th minute, the England captain seeing his initial shot charged down, but Giovani Lo Celso kept the threat alive and the rebound from his follow-up effort was tucked in by the alert Kane.

Spurs' dominance continued into the second half, with Lo Celso seeing a curling free-kick go just wide, before Bryan blasted over from the middle of the area.

Andre Ferreira made a necessary save to thwart Lo Celso just past the hour, and then Bryan opted against teeing up Kane for his hat-trick when shooting agonisingly wide.

Spurs wrapped the win up 20 minutes from the end as Antunes deflected a Lo Celso free-kick into his own goal, and Kane was swiftly withdrawn to a rapturous ovation with qualification secured.

 

What does it mean? A soothing evening for Nuno as competent start continues

It is fair to say Nuno's appointment at Spurs was not exactly greeted with great fanfare. After all, a whole host of coaches are said to have been considered or rejected the club before they turned to the Portuguese tactician, and then a defeat to Pacos in Portugal hardly helped matters.

Add to that the constant distraction of the Kane saga and it was the perfect recipe for chaos in the early weeks of the season, but having claimed six points from their first two league games and confidently overturned the first-leg deficit on Thursday, it is all looking rather rosy.

There was no hint of Kane sulking here either. Wearing the captain's armband, he looked as focused and composed as ever, cracking a few smiles as he opened his account for the season.

He's not the messiah – but Bryan looks the real deal

Spurs fans are yet to see the young Spain international in Premier League action, his only previous outing being the first leg of this tie very soon after he returned from the Olympic Games. Occupying a roaming role, Bryan looked bright and inventive between the lines, his positivity a real asset in getting Tottenham on the front foot. His assist was the least he deserved in what was an encouraging display.

Kane keeps his cool to calm the boo-boys

He got a mixed reception at the start when his name was read out, but two goals and a solid performance later, he was given a good ovation as he left the pitch. Fans will hope his flirting with City will not have any real impact on Kane's form, and this was a nice way to ease himself back into the swing of things.

What's next?

It is back to Premier League action on Sunday for Spurs as they host promoted Watford at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in their final game before the international break.

Harry Kane is in contention to make his first start of the season against Pacos de Ferreira after confirming he is staying at Tottenham beyond the end of this transfer window.

The Manchester City-linked striker put a temporary end to speculation regarding his future on Wednesday by declaring that he is "100 per cent focused" on Spurs.

England captain Kane was not included in Tottenham's squad for their first two games of the campaign, but he returned as a second-half substitute in Sunday's win at Wolves.

He has been named in Spurs' squad for Thursday's Europa Conference League play-off tie with Pacos, which the north London outfit trail 1-0 from last week's first leg.

Tottenham boss Nuno Espirito Santo is happy to be able to move on from the transfer saga, which has somewhat overshadowed his side's positive start to the new Premier League season.

"It's great news, fantastic news for everybody," Nuno said when asked about Kane committing his future to Spurs.

"I think since Harry returned to us, he's been working hard. This is what we value. His attitude in training has been great. 

"It's now finished – Harry's going to be with us. He worked today and is an option for tomorrow. Like I said, fantastic news for everybody.

"We are all very happy. He is one of the best players in the world. We are all very happy, delighted to have one more option to the season ahead of us."

Kane has scored 221 goals in 337 appearances for Tottenham in all competitions and is second only to Jimmy Graves (266) in the list of the club's all-time top scorers.

The 28-year-old's 37 goal involvements last season were his most across a league campaign to date, while his 14 assists doubled a previous high of seven in 2016-17.

Despite Kane admitting in May that he was at a "crossroads" in his career, Nuno has no doubt over the prolific striker's motivation to continue playing for Spurs.

"I think it's up to us and everybody, the player himself, to get this motivation. There shouldn't be any kind of doubts to pay for Spurs," he said. 

"This is an amazing club, a good team, and we we need everybody involved during this process. It's good hat this issue is over and we can proceed as normal."

Tottenham made 11 changes to their starting line-up for last week's trip to Portugal, which they lost to a first-half strike from Lucas Silva.

Spurs must now turn things around when Pacos visit Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Thursday, with Nuno expected to name a stronger side this time around.

When further probed on whether Kane is in line to start, Nuno said: "Let's see, we still have to decide. He trained today. It was a fantastic training session.

"But we still have to decide the starting team for tomorrow. There are a lot of things to understand. This week is different, we are all together.

"That allows us to make different decisions, different circumstances. It's a must win game, with the tie to be decided tomorrow."

Harry Kane has confirmed that he is "100 per cent focused" on Tottenham and will not be leaving the club during this transfer window.

The England captain has been strongly linked with a move to Manchester City since admitting in May he had reached a "crossroads" in his Spurs career.

Kane was not included in Tottenham's squad for their first two games of the season as the speculation mounted, but he returned as a second-half substitute in Sunday's win at Wolves.

The 28-year-old took to social media on Wednesday to declare that he will not be going anywhere before the transfer window closes on August 31.

"It was incredible to see the reception from the Spurs fans on Sunday and to read some of the messages of support I've had in the last few weeks," he said.

"I will be staying at Tottenham this summer and will be 100% focused on helping the team achieve success. #COYS"

Could the Kylian Mbappe transfer saga be nearing a conclusion?

Long linked with Real Madrid, Mbappe is out of contract at the end of the season.

Paris Saint-Germain's attempts to re-sign Mbappe have been fruitless up until this point and the Ligue 1 giants are reportedly willing to cash in.

 

TOP STORY – MBAPPE NEARING MADRID?

Paris Saint-Germain are prepared to accept an offer for Kylian Mbappe should one arrive from Real Madrid before the end of the transfer window, according to RMC.

PSG have been fighting to re-sign Mbappe, who is in the final year of his current deal in the French capital.

However, PSG have reportedly accepted defeat in their efforts to retain Mbappe beyond the 2021-22 season as Madrid look to lure the Frenchman to the Santiago Bernabeu.

Premier League pair Manchester United and Liverpool have also been linked.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Mirror writes United are prepared to offer cash plus a player-swap – believed to be Jesse Lingard – to sign West Ham's Declan Rice.

- Atletico Madrid are closing in on a deal to sign Hertha Berlin's Matheus Cunha, says Fabrizio Romano. LaLiga champions Atletico had been linked with Fiorentina star Dusan Vlahovic – also wanted by the likes of Manchester City, Tottenham, Inter and Arsenal – but have so far failed to reach an agreement.

- The Daily Telegraph reports Tottenham are preparing a £40million bid to reunite Nuno Espirito Santo with Wolves star Adama Traore.

Napoli are eyeing unwanted Barcelona midfielder Miralem Pjanic, per Correire dello Sport. Pjanic had looked set to return to Juventus.

- Arsenal midfielder Lucas Torreira will move to Fiorentina after turning down Eintracht Frankfurt, according to Romano.

Chelsea are continuing to eye Sevilla defender Jules Kounde, claims Romano. The Frenchman is ready to swap Seville for London after agreeing personal terms on a deal until June 2026.

- Inter are monitoring Torino star Andrea Belotti as they seek to replace Romelu Lukaku, says Calciomercato. The Serie A champions have also been linked to Lazio forward Joaquin Correa.

Gary Neville cannot understand why the Manchester United hierarchy are not doing everything to sign prolific striker Harry Kane in order to emerge again as genuine Premier League title contenders.

United have spent in excess of £100million in recent weeks to recruit Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane from Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid respectively.

But Neville believes his former club should not rest on their laurels and must now lure Kane north from Tottenham before the transfer window closes on August 31.

Kane, who made his first appearance of the season off the bench in the win over Wolves on Sunday, sparked frenzied speculation around his future when reports emerged in May that he wants to leave Spurs.

Manchester City have been strongly linked, but Neville thinks it is United who need to make a statement signing in order to keep pace with their rivals and back boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

He said on Sky Sports' Monday Night Football: "Chelsea, we've seen what they've done with [£97m signing Romelu] Lukaku. We've seen that [Virgil] Van Dijk has come back [from injury] for Liverpool and we know that Man City are in for [Jack] Grealish and Kane. If they get Kane, I think there's a massive problem for United.

"I'm struggling to understand why Manchester United aren't going that extra step this transfer window.

"Sancho for 70-odd million was last year's money and I think with regards to Manchester United they've always gone after the best player in the Premier League, the best English player in the Premier League, or British player historically.

"[Anthony] Martial, [Daniel] James, [Jesse] Lingard – you're talking about potentially offloading a lot of wages there, potentially getting some transfer fees in.

"Why are they not going in for Harry Kane this week?  

"I think if Harry Kane entered Manchester United you could get up to 90-95 points.  

"Without him, they are still going to have to replace [Edinson] Cavani and Martial next summer – Martial is not going to do it, Cavani has only got one year left.  

"They are going to have to buy a centre-forward at some point – why not get the man now and give Ole that impetus?"

Harry Kane made his first appearance for Tottenham this season on Sunday amid speculation about his future.

Kane has been linked with a big-money move to Manchester City, having reportedly told Spurs he wanted to leave late last season.

Spurs have postured that they are steadfast in wanting to keep their star forward, though it has been claimed they may be tempted if City up their bid to around £150million.

TOP STORY - CITY TO MAKE FRESH KANE BID THIS WEEK

The Telegraph claims that Manchester City will make another push to sign Harry Kane from Tottenham as Spurs chairman Daniel Levy remains stubborn.

City want to bring in Kane to bolster their attack but have reportedly been unsuccessful with a £100m bid previously.

The report claims City will make a further bid this week for the England captain ahead of the closure of the transfer window at the end of the month.

 

ROUND-UP

Tottenham have reached out to Juventus to discuss a potential deal for United States international Weston McKennie, with Tanguy Ndombele expected to be involved in a player exchange according to Tuttosport.

- Corriere dello Sport claims that Napoli have contacted Barcelona's Miralem Pjanic about a move to Italy. Barca are reportedly hoping to offload several players to ease their financial situation, with midfielder Pjanic among them.

- Sport1 claims that RB Leipzig remain interested in signing Barcelona youngster Ilaix Moriba and may make a move if Marcel Sabitzer leaves the German club.

- Rennes will permit Eduardo Camavinga to leave for €35m as the closure of the transfer window approaches, reports Fabrizio Romano. Chelsea and Manchester United are among his admirers.

- Romano also reports that Chelsea will sell Davide Zappacosta to Atalanta, with personal terms already agreed.

Burnley will rival Southampton in their interest for Celtic midfielder Ryan Christie, claims the Daily Record. Italian club Sampdoria are also keen on the Scotland international.

Pep Guardiola insists it is Manchester City's "obligation and duty" to ensure they have the strongest squad possible as the English champions continue to be linked with Tottenham striker Harry Kane.

City have yet to bring in a replacement for all-time leading goalscorer Sergio Aguero, who departed the Etihad Stadium at the end of the 2020-21 campaign and has since joined Barcelona on a free transfer.

England international Kane is reportedly City's only target ahead of the August 31 deadline, with Spurs rumoured to have already rejected one big-money offer from their fellow Premier League club. 

And while Guardiola reiterated he will be happy with his squad should no new striker arrive before the window closes, the Catalan coach says it is only right City continue to work on adding to what they already have.

"When I was asked about a replacement for Aguero in the past, I said it would depend on the market, the options, whether we buy or not," Guardiola said. "It is still the same situation. 

"We still have nine or 10 days of the market and we will see what happens. If the team is the same as today, I'm more than pleased.  We've put an incredible amount in to compete with the best teams in England and Europe. 

"The group here are fantastic. I have not complained since day one of being here and will not do it now. But of course the club has an obligation and a duty to look forward, to get better."

City started without a recognised striker through the middle in Saturday's 5-0 win over Norwich City, with Gabriel Jesus operating from the right-hand side and starring with two assists.

That win ended a run of three successive competitive defeats without scoring for City and was the 23rd occasion they have won by a margin of at least five goals in the Premier League since Guardiola took over ahead of the 2016-17 campaign.

Jack Grealish, who became the most expensive player in British football history when arriving from Aston Villa in a £100million deal earlier this month, scored his first goal for City in the Norwich win.

Aymeric Laporte, Raheem Sterling and Riyad Mahrez were also on the scoresheet at the Etihad Stadium after Tim Krul had scored an early own goal.

Next up for Guardiola's men is a home match against Arsenal next Saturday.

Nuno Espirito Santo was happy with Harry Kane's display as a substitute in Tottenham's 1-0 victory over Wolves on Sunday.

Dele Alli's penalty – the midfielder's first Premier League goal since March 2020 – proved decisive at Molineux as Nuno got one over on his former club.

Spurs talisman Kane, a transfer target for Manchester City, missed the opening two games of the season – a win over the champions and a defeat to Pacos de Ferreira in Europa Conference League qualifying – but returned to a rapturous welcome from the travelling support.

Kane came on in the 72nd minute, and perhaps showed just why Nuno has been reluctant to call on him so far, away from the transfer speculation.

It has been widely reported that Kane would like to join City, but the 28-year-old has also only had one week of training since returning from an extended break following Euro 2020.

Kane had 14 touches, attempted nine passes and had one shot during his time on the pitch – Jose Sa closing down a close-range effort from the England captain.

The opportunity, teed up brilliantly by Steven Bergwijn, had an expected goals (xG) estimation of 0.336, making it the second-best chance of the game from open play, after an attempt which Adama Traore drilled straight at Hugo Lloris at the other end.

While a fully firing Kane would no doubt have converted the opportunity, Nuno was nevertheless pleased with what the striker showed in his cameo.

"I think he did well. He helped the team. He had a good chance," Nuno told a news conference. 

"Harry is still in the process of increasing and improving his level of fitness, but because he's one of the best players in the world you could see the way he helped the team in terms of possession and the fine lines. We need everybody, we need everybody."

Asked if Kane would be involved on Thursday, in the home leg of Spurs' tie with Pacos de Ferreira, Nuno replied: "I cannot answer that, it's too soon.

"Now we are going to recover and prepare for the next one. Like we always do the same way and make the decisions that we should take."

While Kane made his comeback, it was Alli who was the difference. After an impressive showing against City last week, the midfielder coolly converted the ninth-minute spot-kick that he won.

Tottenham have now only lost one of their 45 Premier League games in which Alli has scored (W35 D9 L1), and Nuno hailed the 25-year-old's performance.

"He's working very hard. I think all the team is working hard," Nuno said.

"We still have a long way to go and are working very hard to improve, the relationship between players and being very versatile enough.

"He scored in the beginning of the game and in the last minutes of the game he was running all over the pitch so that shows the level of fitness that he has and the belief that he has. A huge, huge help."

Harry Kane made his Tottenham return as Dele Alli's first Premier League goal since March 2020 secured a 1-0 win over Nuno Espirito Santo's former club Wolves.

Kane, a target for Manchester City, did not feature in Spurs' opening day defeat of City or their loss to Pacos de Ferreira in midweek, though the England captain came on as a 71st-minute substitute at Molineux.

While speculation will no doubt continue to mount as the transfer window draws to a close, Kane received a warm welcome from the travelling Spurs fans as he helped Nuno maintain his winning league start.

With Kane missing a gilt-edged chance to settle the contest late on, Alli's ninth-minute penalty ultimately proved decisive – Adama Traore wasting Wolves' best opportunity.

Having dealt admirably with Raheem Sterling and Jack Grealish last week, Japhet Tanganga was tasked with keeping track of Traore this time around, though he had an early scare when the winger cut inside, only to blaze wide.

Wolves' bright start was swiftly punctured – Jose Sa colliding with Alli, who stepped up to slot home the resulting spot-kick.

Making his first Premier League appearance at Molineux since November 2020, Raul Jimenez went close to equalising before the half-hour mark, his first-time effort skimming over, before Alli was inches away from tucking in Steven Bergwijn's cross.

Nelson Semedo – who had earlier had a hopeful penalty appeal dismissed – tried his luck from range as Wolves started the second half with intent, the full-back's venomous strike whistling wide.

Spurs could have been 2-0 up soon after, Son Heung-min having raced clear, but Maximilian Kilman got across to block the forward's path.

Traore should have made Spurs pay as he went through one-on-one with Hugo Lloris, only to send his finish straight at the goalkeeper.

Kane's introduction drew chants of appreciation from the Spurs fans, though he showed rare profligacy when put through by Bergwijn – Sa making a smart double stop to keep Wolves in it, yet the goalkeeper's efforts were not enough to inspire a comeback.

Harry Kane could be set to make his first appearance of the season after he was named in Tottenham's squad for their visit to Wolves.

Kane, a target for Manchester City, last played for England in the Euro 2020 final on July 11.

The Spurs talisman – who scored 23 Premier League goals last season to win the Golden Boot – only returned to training on August 13 and was not involved as Nuno Espirito Santo's side defeated City in their first game of the season last Sunday.

He was included in the 25-man squad for the Europa Conference League qualifier against Pacos de Ferreira but did not make the trip to Portugal for the first leg. Tottenham lost 1-0.

Nuno suggested on Friday that Kane could be involved after getting a full week of training under his belt and, despite speculation over his future continuing, the 28-year-old has made the Tottenham squad, taking a place among the substitutes. 

Given he has not played in well over a month, it is unsurprising to see Kane only named on the bench for Nuno's reunion with his former side.

Lucas Moura, Steven Bergwijn and matchwinner Son Heung-min spearheaded Spurs' attack against City and the trio lead an unchanged starting XI at Molineux.

In all competitions, this will be the 100th meeting between Wolves and Spurs. Tottenham won the previous encounter and are looking for consecutive Premier League wins over Wolves for the first time since winning both games in 2003-04.

Wolves have lost each of their past four Premier League games, scoring just one goal in the process. It is their longest losing run in the top-flight since a run of seven between March and April 2012, though this is Bruno Lage's first home game in charge.

Lionel Messi was the topic of plenty of speculation in recent weeks before inking a two-year deal with Paris Saint-Germain.

The 34-year-old left Barcelona as a free agent after two decades with the Catalan club, unable to stay despite wanting to continue his career there.

But rumours are swirling already about Messi's next move after PSG, even though he has yet to even make his debut for the Ligue 1 side.

 

TOP STORY - BECKHAM HOLDS MESSI TALKS

Inter Miami owner David Beckham has held talks with Messi about joining the MLS club after his PSG contract expires, reports The Mirror.

The former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder has promised to bring a superstar player to the club, with links to Cristiano Ronaldo in the past.

According to the report, Messi purchased six luxury penthouse apartments in Miami a few weeks ago, adding fuel to the fire.


ROUND-UP

- Manchester City will need to up their bid for Harry Kane to Tottenham by £50million to convince Spurs to sell, reports The Mirror. City have reportedly tabled an improved bid since their £100m offer and are said to be willing to go as high as £120m.

- Newcastle are ready to make a move to sign Everton's Colombian midfielder James Rodriguez, according to fichajes.net.

- Milan are interested in a move for Manchester City midfielder Bernardo Silva for £45m (€52m) according to Star on Sunday.

- The Sun claims that Southampton are looking to complete a bargain deal for Celtic midfielder Ryan Christie, who is out of contract at the end of the season.

The transfer window is not even closed but attention is already turning to next season.

Kylian Mbappe is into the final year of his Paris Saint-Germain contract, while Erling Haaland's Borussia Dortmund deal has clubs queuing up.

Manchester United are reportedly set to pursue both.

 

TOP STORY – MBAPPE, HAALAND FUTURE RED DEVILS?

Manchester United have made Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe a target for next season, according to ESPN.

Mbappe has long been tipped to join Real Madrid and Saturday's Marca and Diario AS claim the LaLiga giants are still trying to sign the PSG star before the end of the transfer window.

Liverpool have also previously been linked with Mbappe, but United are keeping tabs on his situation, with the Frenchman out of contract at the end of 2021-22.

French journalist Julien Laurens, meanwhile, also suggests next year could be the perfect time for United to prise Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund.

Haaland has no shortage of suitors, linked with Madrid, Barcelona, Manchester City and Bayern Munich as his release clause comes into force at season's end.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Daily Mail says City are willing to sell defender Aymeric Laporte for £60million (€69m). The Spain international is reportedly wanted by Juventus and Madrid.

Chelsea remain interested in Sevilla centre-back Jules Kounde, per The Telegraph. The Blues have also been linked with Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez, who has also caught the attention of United and Liverpool.

- Diario AS says wantaway Tottenham midfielder Tanguy Ndombele is eyeing a switch to Madrid, Barca or Bayern.

Real Sociedad are tracking PSG star Pablo Sarabia, according to Le Parisien. Sevilla could also reportedly rival Sociedad for the Spain international.

- Sky Sport Italia reports Juve are set to meet with Paulo Dybala's agent to discuss a new contract.

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