Amid rumours suggesting the potential arrival of Erling Haaland, Manchester City are expected to offload a few of their star attackers in the upcoming summer transfer window.
The list is topped by Gabriel Jesus, who has failed to establish himself as a first-team regular even in the current setup and could fall further behind in the pecking order next season. It has compelled him to look for an exit from Etihad at the end of the season.
Real Madrid are regarded as one of the clubs in contention to sign Gabriel this summer, with the Spanish giants currently in the market for attacking reinforcements.
The situation has gotten even more interesting as Real Madrid are set to lock horns with Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League semi-final on Tuesday.
Speaking ahead of the game, Gabriel Jesus has lauded his international teammate Vinicius Junior, stating: “I’m a fan of Vinicius Junior.”
The Manchester City attacker continued by praising the atmosphere at Santiago Bernabeu and why he and his teammates will need to be at their hundred percent in order to prevail in this encounter.
“You have to impose the rhythm because at the Bernabeu they have magic”, he added (h/t Marca)
Given the links with Real Madrid, it is easy to link Gabriel Jesus’ comments to his potential desire to play for the Whites next season. But when asked about his future, the attacker denied commenting, suggesting it is not the right time.
“It’s not time to think about this. You expect me to say this, but it’s true. Now is the best moment of the season. I want to enjoy, to keep focused on my team, with my teammates, to fight for the Premier League.”
“I won it with my teammates three times and I know how that feels and I want to have that feeling again. And then, of course, we also have the tough game on Tuesday against Real Madrid (in the Champions League) and that is my focus.“
UFC Champion to kick off Real Madrid vs Sevilla, sends message to Mbappe: “Lucky to play for the best club in the world”
Coming on the back of his triumph at UFC, Featherweight champion Ilia Topuria has announced he will take honorary kick-off in the upcoming Real Madrid vs Sevilla in La Liga this weekend.
Topuria confirmed this in a recent press conference in the Spanish capital this midweek.
A self-proclaimed Madridista, Topuria expressed his deep connection with the club and even sent a message to Kylian Mbappe, who is widely expected to join the club on a free transfer this summer.
Ilia Topuria: A hardcore Madridista
Ilia Topuria did not hold back his affection for Real Madrid, stating, “For me, the team that represents the values of Spain the most is Real Madrid.”
The Georgian-Spaniard UFC champion went on to confirm that he will meet Florentino Perez on Sunday and take the kick-off.
“I’m going to meet Florentino Perez on Sunday and take the kick-off,” he said (h/t Mundo Deportivo).
Although born in Germany, Topuria made Spain proud last Saturday when he beat Alexander Volkanovski in the second round. In the process, he became the first fighter from Spain to capture a UFC belt.
Topuria’s triumph has granted him overnight success in Spain, with the 27-year-old even becoming a cultural icon for many.
Topuria’s message for Mbappe
Other than professing his love for Real Madrid, Ilia Topuria also had a message for Mbappe.
When asked about the Frenchman potentially joining Real Madrid this summer, he said, “Welcome. He’s lucky to play for the best club in the world.”
Real Madrid, for their part, also congratulated Topuria on his triumph. “Congratulations on your historic triumph for Spanish sport, Ilia Topuria. We are proud that a great Real Madrid fan like you becomes UFC world champion,” the club posted on X.
Real Madrid fans, meanwhile, will be excited to witness Topuria taking the honorary kickoff as Los Blancos take on Sevilla this weekend, with three crucial points on the line.