Dzeko: I love English football

Roma striker Edin Dzeko has admitted that he is still in love with English football and would be happy to make a return to the Premier League.

The 32-year-old lanky forward won the Premier League twice during his four-and-half-years at Manchester City, before making the switch to the Serie A in 2016.

Dzeko revealed that he would be happy to make a return to England, but is also aware that it will not be easy due to his age.

The Bosnian has in recent years been linked with a move to Chelsea, but has remained with the Giallorossi.

"It's probably too late for me to return to the Premier League, but you never know: we'll see," Dzeko told at a Press conference in Bosnia.

"I love English football, I played in the Premier League for four-and-a-half years and enjoyed it a lot, even if i'm happy at Roma right now."

Ancelotti: Mbappe is 'very dangerous'

Napoli manager Carlo Ancelotti admits Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe has the ability to cause his team serious problems when they meet in the Champions League.

The Partenopei will travel to the French capital to take on the Ligue 1 champions on Wednesday, October 24 for the third round of Group C fixtures.

Ancelotti's charges are at the top of the group after drawing 0-0 with Red Star Belgrade and beating Liverpool 1-0 in their opening two games. However, the Napoli boss know Mbappe will be a big threat for his side.

The France international has already scored 10 goals and made four assists in seven games across all competitions this season.

"Mbappe is a nice player, very fast; but there are a lot of fast players, the difference is he can be both fast and effective at the same time," Ancelotti told the media.

"Whatever he does, he's very effective. He is a no-frills guy, a very direct player. And therefore, very dangerous.

"He is very young, he will definitely be a star in the next few years."

Lukaku hails Utd rivals Juventus

Romelu Lukaku has talked up the talents of Juventus ahead of facing the Serie A side in their next Champions League encounter.

Speaking after netting twice in Belgium's 2-1 UEFA Nations League win over Switzerland on Friday, the Manchester United striker said he would also be keen to spend some time playing in Italy.

Having featured for Chelsea, West Brom, Everton and United in the Premier League, the 25-year-old said he would consider his future away from England.

Speaking to La Gazzetta dello Sport, Lukaku said: "Juve have a great project in place and they just keep going. Every year they try to get stronger.

"Without doubt, Juve are one of the two or three best teams in Europe. They've got a great coach and extraordinary players in every area of the team.

"Cristiano Ronaldo stands out but watch out for the others too. Paulo Dybala is already impressive and getting stronger, while I love Douglas Costa. He's an exceptional signing and his career shows he always makes the difference.

"It's a tough group, but obviously Manchester United want to finish on top."

And on whether he would consider the Serie A, Lukaku added: "Why not? I hope so."

United went into the international break on the back of a come-from-behind victory over Newcastle, and play Chelsea next week before facing Juve.

But there is a still the small matter of a clash with the Netherlands for Lukaku in an international friendly on Tuesday.

Agent: Dolberg out of Napoli's reach

Kasper Dolberg's agent Jens Steffensen insists his client is currently out of reach for Napoli unless they present a suitable offer for the Danish starlet.

Steffensen admitted that his client has been linked with the Serie A side, but stated that they can only sign the 20-year-old if there is a good offer for his services.

The young forward's career has been on the rise in the Eredivisie over the last two-years and also made Denmark's squad for the 2018 World Cup played in Russia earlier this year.

"My client has always been liked by Napoli, but it's not a feasible deal for them to pull off," Steffensen told Radio Marte.

"He's worth more than €30m, which is a figure out of Napoli's reach, but if they were to present us with a suitable offer then we'd be ready to talk to them.

"We're talking about a great team and anything is possible in the world of football, but I haven"t talked to them until now."

Zanetti backing Icardi, Martinez partnership

Inter legend Javier Zanetti is confident Argentinean duo of Mauro Icardi and Lautaro Martinez could form a deadly attacking partnership if played together for the Nerazzurri.

Zanetti, who now serves the club as the vice-president and was the captain of the treble winning team of 2010, believes the current squad are still a work in progress under Luciano Spalletti.

Martinez recently netted his first goal for Argentina in the friendly against Iraq and his countryman has backed him to be a success in the Serie A playing in attack alongside the experienced Icardi.

"He is young and certainly bodes well for the future. Luciano Spalletti is doing a great job as Coach and it's up to him to decide. When it'll be possible, they will play together. I am convinced that great players can always co-exist,"Zanetti told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"I hope that Icardi can become a symbol of Inter. He seems very happy and I hope he continues with us for a long time.

"That Inter and this current squad are in two very different situations. We were reaching the apex of an era. Being back in the Champions League is already a starting point, but we have what it takes to do well.

"The upcoming games against Milan and Barcelona are very important. Obviously, the Derby di Milano is 'The Game' and both teams go into it on good form. It's a pity some will return late from international duty and we won't have much time to prepare."

Agent: Napoli can't afford Dolberg

Napoli do not have the financial resources to bring Ajax star Kasper Dolberg to Naples, according to the striker's agent Jens Steffensen.

ItaSportPress have reported that the 21-year-old has been in Napoli's transfer plans for a while, but Steffensen remains skeptical of their ability to sign him.

"My client has always been liked by Napoli, but it's not a feasible deal for them to pull off," he told Radio Marte.

"He's worth more than €30m, which is a figure out of Napoli's reach, but if they were to present us with a suitable offer then we'd be ready to talk to them.

"We're talking about a great team and anything is possible in the world of football, but I haven't talked to them until now."

Dolberg has scored two goals in three Eredivisie appearances this season. He also represented Denmark at the 2018 World Cup.

Kalinic: Gattuso is the right man for Milan

Former AC Milan forward Nikola Kalinic believes manager Gennaro Gattuso has the ability to take the Rossoneri to great heights.

Kalinic spent last season on loan at Milan and, despite struggling for form during that spell, the Croatian enjoyed Gattuso's coaching style and believes he can do well at the club.

"He is amazing. There were all types of jokes, a very good atmosphere, laughs, but when you start training or get on the field, he gives everything and wants everything," Kalinic told AS.

"He pushes you. He's crazy, but in a good way.

"He is a great person and I think that Milan will go far with him."

Gattuso has a tough job ahead as he aims to bring Milan back to the top of Italian football. They have not won a Scudetto since 2010/11.

Rossoneri claim agreement for Paqueta

Milan general manager Leonardo claims there is a "basic agreement" in place with Flamengo to acquire the signature of Lucas Paqueta in January.

The 21-year-old attacking midfielder has attracted the attention of Europe's elite after an impressive season with Mengao, which brought 11 goals in 48 appearances.

Paqueta's exploits for his hometown club saw him rewarded with a first Brazil cap in September when he came on as a second-half substitute in the 2-0 win over USA.

Former Samba star Kaka was handed the task of selling MIlan to the highly-rated youngster and it seems the Rossoneri legend has succeeded.

Leonardo admits they have some way to go in finalising a deal, though, but is hopeful of landing Paqueta in the New Year.

"We have a basic agreement with Flamengo, but the market reopens in January so we still have a little way to go before the official level," the 49-year-old told reporters.

"Now we have to think only of the league and the Europa League and not the market. At the moment he is a Flamengo player, he still has to play some Brazilian league matches. We have to wait for January 3."

'Zielinski was meant to play for Liverpool'

Empoli president Fabrizio Corsi says Piotr Zielinski was set to join Liverpool before being convinced to move to Napoli instead.

The 24-year-old Polish international midfielder signed for the Serie A club in August 2016.

He was tipped to be Reds boss Jurgen Klopp's first signing upon joining the club, but after a loan spell with Empoli, opted to remain in Italy.

Zielinski has thrived at Napoli but any big money move would mean that potential buyers would have to fork out £57.8m to activate his release clause.

Corsi told Calciomercato: "He was meant to play for Liverpool.

"When he came to Naples, he had that option, but they did really well to convince him.

"I have a few regrets regarding him. He was decisive for us, but I didn’t ask for a ransom.

"I was working with Udinese’s interests in mind, who then had an agreement with Naples."

Hamsik: Napoli can still catch Juventus

Napoli star Marek Hamsik insists the Serie A is not a one-horse race with Juventus in front, despite them winning seven consecutive Scudetti.

The Bianconeri have already opened up a six-point lead over second-placed Napoli this season as they won all eight of their opening league games.

Despite the gap, Hamsik remains bullish about the Partenopei's chances of catching the Old Lady and ending their Serie A stranglehold.

Ancelotti's charges lost 3-1 at Juventus last month. Their next league encounter will be away at Udinese on October 20.

"Serie A is one of the best leagues in the world. It's not just about Juve, as there are other strong sides like Roma, the two Milan clubs and it is a balanced division," he told the press.

"Juventus have strengthened, but they are not unbeatable. We can fight to the end of the season and hope to catch them."

Meanwhile, Hamsik has also seen his role in the Napoli team change under new manager Carlo Ancelotti this campaign. Having been used mostly as an attacking midfielder in the past, the 31-year-old now sits deeper.

He added: "I am an attacking midfield, so for most of my career I've been accustomed to scoring goals, which makes playing in a deeper role a bit of a novelty for me.

"I do like to see a lot of the ball, though, so I don't see it as a problem."

Flamengo confirm Milan talks for Paqueta

Flamengo director of sports Carlos Noval has confirmed that they are in advanced negotiations with AC Milan over the sale of attacking midfielder Lucas Paqueta.

Reports in Brazil had suggested that the two clubs have already agreed a deal worth €35m plus bonuses, but Noval stated that nothing has been finalised as yet.

Paris Saint-Germain and Liverpool were also reported to be in the race for the signature of the 21-year-old forward.

"It's not a done deal with Milan yet and we prefer to talk only when things are done and dusted, Noval told Tuttomercatoweb.

"We are talking. Negotiations are on-going, but as far as we are concerned, they are not closed yet.

"I do think it can be finalised in two weeks, though. It should be a couple of weeks, yes."

Bergwijn not in contact with Nerazzurri

The father of PSV winger Steven Bergwijn says Inter Milan have not made any contact with him over the services of his in-demand son.

Reports in the Netherlands have stated that the 21-year-old has attracted interest from the Nerazzurri and Liverpool.

Bergwijn senior admitted Serie A would be a good move for his boy, but is at the moment happy with PSV and respects the contract that he has at the Philips Stadion.

"I haven't heard any interest in my son, and we're not trying to leave. If PSV decide to sell him it'll be at the end of the season, not in the January transfer window," Bergwijn's dad told FCInterNews.

"No-one from Inter has ever contacted me, and I want to make it clear that Steven is not pushing to leave PSV. He's very grateful for what they've done for him.

"His contract expires on June 30, 2022. He recently signed a new three-year deal and extended it for another year. Serie A is a nice league with many great teams, not to mention it's in a beautiful country where the food is delicious.

"Steven loves football, he can adapt to any league, if necessary, but when we move to another country, the social aspect is very important.

"At the moment he doesn't have a preferred league, because he's not thinking about leaving PSV. Other players might call their agents all the time to ask about big clubs being interested, but he doesn't."

Chievo turn to Ventura

Serie A basement club Chievo have moved swiftly to replace Lorenzo D'Anna by appointing Gian Piero Ventura as his successor on Wednesday.

D'Anna was relieved of his duties 24 hours earlier after a disappointing start to the new season, which saw the Flying Donkeys fail to record a single win in their opening eight league matches.

The 46-year-old had only been handed the reins in April and departs Stadio Marc'Antonio Bentegodi with the team entrenched in the relegation zone on minus-one point, having been docked three last month for false accounting relating to transfers.

Ventura, who has been out of a job since being sacked as Italy manager in the wake of their failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, joins the Verona outfit on a two-year contract.

The 70-year-old will be assisted by Salvatore Sullo and fitness coach Alessandro Innocenti, and starts his tenure with a home game against Atalanta after the international break.

A statement from the Italian club read: "To Mr Ventura and his staff, from all of Chievo, the warmest welcome and good luck for the work to be done."

De Laurentiis accuses Sarri of milking his money

Napoli owner Aurelio De Laurentiis has accused Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri of using him in order to "get rich".

De Laurentiis replaced Sarri with Carlo Ancelotti ahead of the 2018/19 season, and since then, he has been less than complimentary of the Italian club's former coach.

"I thought I'd met a coach in Sarri who would stay here for a long time. I could've held him back, because he had two more years left on his contract, but at a certain point it became only a question of money," De Laurentiis told Corriere dello Sport.

"This is a strange world, where suddenly - through the media - it's established when a contract is valid, so what's the value of an agreement that's just written?

"Keep in mind that I'd already gave him a raise from 700,000 Euros to 1.55 million. I also once heard him say that for his next contract, he wanted to get rich.

"I asked myself: what about his declarations of love for the city? I'd believed him, but then I wondered: what if he was using me as a bank?"

However, De Laurentiis has claimed that in Ancelotti, he has found the coach he thought he had in Sarri - one who can stay for a long period of time.

"The other day Carlo was in Ischia, he called me to say with enthusiasm: 'Aurelio, I could stay here for six years'," he said.

"I'm proud to have identified a man of his calibre, not just in professional terms. We have a human relationship, where we can amicably discuss our mutual interests."

Report: Bayern tracking Inter centre-back

Bayern Munich are said to be monitoring Inter Milan defender Milan Skriniar, whose performances in Serie A have reportedly caught the attention of other top clubs in Europe.

The Slovakia international proved himself to be one of the best defenders in Italy's top flight last season and has produced some fine displays for the Nerazzurri this term.

Manchester City and Barcelona have previously expressed an interest in Skriniar and now it appears Bayern have him in their sights.

According to Tuttosport, the 23-year-old centre-back is being looked at following a poor run of form by the German giants in which they have conceded six goals in three Bundesliga matches.

The publication report that the Bavarians are looking to strengthen in the January transfer window and are considering buying Skriniar for an estimated 80 million euros.

Inter have been locked in negotiations for months with his representatives about a contract extension, however, no agreement has been reached.

The Italian club are said to be offering 2.5m euros a season whereas Skriniar wants 3.5 million. As such, Bayern are monitoring the situation with interest and could potentially make an offer in January.

Agent: No rush over new deal for Icardi

Mauro Icardi's wife and agent Wanda says their camp is not in a rush for the Inter Milan captain to pen a new contract with the Serie A side.

The Argentinean was in the off-season linked with a move to Spain and England, but his agent feels there is no need to press the panic buttons as the striker still has three-years left in the current contract.

The 25-year-old, who was the Serie A's joint top goal scorer in the previous season, has already netted five goals from the eight games played so far in all competitions.

"He still has three years on his contract with Inter, there's no renewal theme," Wanda Icardi told Tiki Taka.

"I'm very happy; I've always been very calm. It's you who have anxiety.

"Icardi's goals in the Champions League? They're very important. For him, as for Cristiano Ronaldo and other players, is the most important competition outside of the national team."

Pellegrini: Real Madrid shouldn't have let Ronaldo go

West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini has claimed that Real Madrid, a club which he previously managed, should have held onto Cristiano Ronaldo.

Ronaldo signed for Juventus from the European champions for a fee reportedly in the region of 100 million Euros during the off-season.

Los Blancos have got the 2018/19 season off to a poor start without the Portuguese superstar, picking up just 14 points from their opening eight La Liga matches.

"Madrid have lost a lot of goals; Cristiano took too many goals with him when he left. He should have ended his career in Madrid and I was surprised they allowed him to leave," Pellegrini told Spanish radio show El Larguero.

"There is a difference between [Gareth] Bale and Cristiano, who has made the difference for the last 10 years."

One man who has been widely tipped as a possible replacement to Cristiano Ronaldo, Eden Hazard, has admitted that playing for Real Madrid has long been a dream of his. According to Pellegrini, that would be a match made in heaven.

"He is a player of great quality," said the former Manchester City boss of the Chelsea star. "He is playing at an extraordinary level and making the difference. He can play at any club in the world."

Juric in for Ballardini at Genoa

The managerial merry-go-round at Genoa continued on Tuesday when Ivan Juric replaced Davide Ballardini at the helm of the Serie A club.

Ballardini, who succeeded Juric in November 2017, was relieved of his duties in the wake of Sunday's 3-1 defeat at home to Parma, which left the team 11th in the table after seven matches.

The Croatian returns to the Rossoblu for a fourth spell, having ended his playing career at Stadio Luigi Ferraris in 2010, before being handed the reins for the first time in 2016.

His previous two stints lasted less than a season, but Juric will be hoping the third time is a charm. Ballardini himself had been in charge of the Liguria outfit on three separate occasions.

The 43-year-old will be unveiled on Wednesday and starts his latest tenure with a tough trip to defending champions Juventus after the international break.

D'Anna axed by struggling Chievo

Chievo's woes continued on Tuesday when head coach Lorenzo D'Anna was relieved of his duties in the wake of Sunday's 3-1 defeat at Milan.

The Flying Donkeys were docked three points last month after the Italian Football Federation found them guilty of false accounting relating to transfers.

D'Anna had only been appointed to the post on April 29 following the sacking of Rolando Maran, and oversaw three straight wins to close out the Serie A campaign.

However, the Verona outfit have made a dreadful start to the new season, with the loss at the San Siro extending their winless run in the league to eight games.

Reports in Italy claim that former Italy manager Gian Piero Ventura is set to take over the reins at Stadio Marc'Antonio Bentegodi.

The Italian club issued a statement on Tuesday, which read: "Thanks go to D'Anna for the work done with commitment, seriousness and professional honesty since day one."

Real Madrid dominate Ballon d'Or shortlist

The full 30-man shortlist for the Ballon d'Or has been released by France Football, with eight Real Madrid players featuring on the illustrious list.

The winner will be announced on 3 December in Paris, where a Women's award and the Kopa Trophy for the youngster of the year will be handed out for the first time.

The Ballon d'Or, which is voted on by a panel of international journalists, is separate from FIFA's The Best awards after FIFA and France Football ended their collaboration in 2016.

Luka Modric beat Cristiano Ronaldo and Mohamed Salah to FIFA's Player of the Year award, with five-time winner Lionel Messi failing to make the podium.

The four superstars are unsurprisingly all among the final nominees for the Ballon d'Or.

The Bundesliga and the Eredivisie are not represented on the men's player of the year shortlist, but do have players vying for the Kopa in Dortmund's Christian Pulisic and Groningen's Ritsu Doan.

The full 30-man Ballon d'Or shortlist:

Sergio Aguero (Man City), Alisson Becker (Liverpool), Gareth Bale (R Madrid), Karim Benzema (R Madrid), Kevin de Bruyne (Man City), Edinson Cavani (PSG),
Thibaut Courtois (R Madrid), Roberto Firmino (Liverpool), Diego Godin (Atl Madrid), Antoine Griezmann (Atl Madrid), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Isco (R Madrid),
Harry Kane (Tottenham), N’Golo Kante (Chelsea), Hugo Lloris (Tottenham), Mario Mandzukic (Juventus), Sadio Mane (Liverpool), Marcelo (R Madrid),
Kylian Mbappe (PSG), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Luka Modric (R Madrid), Neymar (PSG), Jan Oblak (Atl Madrid), Paul Pogba (Man Utd),
Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus), Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona), Sergio Ramos (R Madrid), Mohamed Salah (Liverpool), Luis Suarez (Barcelona), Raphael Varane (R Madrid).

The Kopa Trophy shortlist:

Trent Alexander-Arnold (England / Liverpool), Houssem Aouar (France / Lyon), Cutrone (Italy / AC Milan), Ritsu Doan (Japan / Groningen), Gianluigi Donnarumma (Italy / AC Milan), Justin Kluivert (Netherlands / AS Roma), Kylian Mbappe (France / Paris Saint-Germain), Christian Pulisic (USA / Borussia Dortmund), Rodrygo (Brazil / Santos), Amadou Haidara (Mali / Red Bull Salzburg)

The Women's Ballon d'Or shortlist:

Lucy Bronze (England), Pernille Harder (Denmark), Ada Hegerberg (Norway), Amandine Henry (France), Lindsey Horan (US), Sam Kerr (Australia), Fran Kirby (England), Saki Kumagai (Japan), Dzsenifer Marozsan (Germany), Amel Majri (France), Marta (Brazil), Lieke Martens (Holland), Megan Rapinoe (US), Wendie Renard (France), Christine Sinclair (Canada)