Despite winning six straight Serie A titles, Juventus are desperate to expand their dominance outside of Italy and win a much-coveted Champions League title. Having lost five consecutive finals in the competition, and seven overall, the Old Lady are determined to rebuild their squad again in an attempt to win the trophy next season.Outs: Leonardo Bonucci, Dani Alves, Mario Lemina After their defeat to Barcelona in 2015, Carlos Tevez, Andrea Pirlo, Arturo Vidal and Fernando Llorente were all allowed to depart, showing that Juve aren't afraid of letting some big names leave in order to move forward.Dani Alves has been allowed to go this summer, while interest in Bonucci from Chelsea and Manchester City could tempt the club to allow his departure as well. Should an offer in excess of 50 million euros be received, they would be willing to let him go.Ins: Douglas Costa, Steven N'Zonzi, Keita Balde, Danilo, Szczesny According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, there are already agreements with N'Zonzi and Costa, but one with Sevilla for the former is yet to be reached. In exchange for the Frenchman, Sevilla asked about Daniele Rugani, but the Italian champions are reluctant to let him go and offered Lemina as a counter.Costa is equally as close, with both players reportedly agreeing to earn five million euros in Turin should their moves be completed. Preparing for Gianluigi Buffon's approaching retirement, Juventus are also in pursuit of Wojciech Szczesny.Danilo has been contacted as a potential replacement for the departing Alves, while Balde and Fiorentina's Federico Bernardeschi could arrive to reinforce the attack.
The English Football Association has ended its sponsorship deals with betting company Ladbrokes and confirmed it was ceasing all commercial agreements with gambling firms. The move comes after the FA was criticised for punishing players for betting violations while having deals in place with gambling companies."At May's board meeting, it was agreed that The FA would end all sponsorships with betting companies starting from the end of the 2016-17 season," the FA said in a statement on Thursday. "The decision was made following a three-month review of The FA's approach to it as a governing body taking betting sponsorship, whilst being responsible for the regulation of sports betting within the sport's rules. "As a consequence, The FA has mutually agreed with Ladbrokes that its current partnership will be terminated from June 2017," concluded the statement. FA rules ban players from betting on any football matches. In April, former Manchester City and Burnley midfielder Joey Barton was banned for 18 months after he was found to have made more than 1,200 bets on football matches. Barton, who said he had a gambling addiction, had pointed out the heavy involvement of the gambling industry in British football where bookmakers act as sponsors at several levels."That all means this is not an easy environment in which to try to stop gambling, or even to encourage people within the sport that betting is wrong," Barton had said in a statement. England's second tier, run by the Football League, is known as the Sky Bet Championship, while numerous clubs have betting companies as shirt sponsors. The FA said they would continue to work with betting companies, including Ladbrokes, in information sharing schemes on suspect betting patterns.Martin Glenn, chief executive of The FA, said: "We would like to thank Ladbrokes for both being a valued partner over the last year and for their professionalism and understanding about our change of policy around gambling." Jim Mullen, CEO of Ladbrokes Coral, said: "We understand The FA's decision regarding their commercial partnerships on gambling."
Former Chelsea midfielder Oscar was handed an eight-match ban by Chinese football authorities on Thursday for his role in a brawl that broke out during Shanghai SIPG's draw with Guangzhou R&F at the weekend.The Brazilian, who moved to China for a record transfer fee in January, was also fined 40,000 yuan (4,622.12 pounds) by the Chinese Football Association in the latest move by the country's authorities to stamp out indiscipline. "According to the referee's report, video evidence and a written explanation from the parties involved... Oscar offended opposing players in an immoral manner, leading to a massive brawl which has had a very bad influence on the Chinese Super League's reputation," an official statement said.The incident was triggered in the dying seconds of the first half of Sunday's game after Oscar had set up Hulk to score his side's equaliser, with Guangzhou players complaining to officials the strike should have been ruled out for offside. Soon after the restart, Oscar deliberately kicked the ball at two Guangzhou players, provoking a response that led to a scuffle on the halfway line.Oscar was pushed to the ground by Guangzhou's Chen Zhizhao, while R&F's Li Tixiang and Fu Huan of SIPG were sent off for their part in the ensuing altercation. The 25-year-old joined SIPG from Chelsea in January for an Asian record transfer fee of 60 million euros ($66.96 million) as Chinese Super League clubs continued a spending spree that has seen several high-profile acquisitions in recent years.Oscar's purchase was the third time in a 12-month period the Asian transfer record had been broken with the fee paid for the Brazilian surpassing that paid by SIPG for Hulk seven months earlier. His sanction is another sign Chinese authorities intend to crack down on poor behaviour as the profile of the Chinese Super League grows overseas.Shanghai Shenhua's Qin Sheng was given a six-month ban in March for stamping on the foot of Belgium international Axel Witsel in a game that was televised internationally.
Nearly three years after making his Spain debut against Macedonia, Munir El Haddadi is looking to change the country of his allegiance in order to play international football with Morocco.Morocco, the country of his ancestry, are keen to have him in their ranks and will request to FIFA that he be allowed to play for them. The forward has played for Spain's first team, but since then he has been limited to appearing for the Under-21s side and he has signed a document to officially request the change.Morocco are confident that the case will be resolved with ease, however, Spain could cause problems, as they previously did with Bojan Krkic's desire to play for Serbia and Borja Valero's attempts to represent Italy.
Dani Alves will leave Juventus this summer and the Champions League runners-up have identified Danilo as a possible replacement.The Turin-based club's CEO Giuseppe Marotta confirmed Alves' departure on Wednesday, but he and his team have already made moves to fill that spot in the squad, with contact between the Serie A champions and Danilo's representatives already made. First reported by Sky Italia and confirmed by MARCA, the interest could be tempting for Real Madrid's backup right-back. He is happy in the Spanish capital and, perhaps more importantly, Zinedine Zidane is happy with him as Dani Carvajal's understudy, yet the chance to earn more playing time at another European giant could be too good to turn down.