Gossip column: Barkley, Neymar, Cole, Huntelaar, Schneiderlin,

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WORLD CUP GOSSIP

Argentina's 1986 World Cup winner Jorge Valdano said of the pressure surrounding star player Lionel Messi: "If we win the World Cup the people will crown Messi with laurels; if not it will be a crown of thorns."Daily Mail

Germany boss Joachim Low has praised Per Mertesacker's attitude after dropping the 29-year-old Arsenal defender from the starting XI for the World Cup quarter-final victory over France. London Evening Standard

Goalkeeper Manuel Neuer has played down his reflex save from France's Karim Benzema in the latter stages of Germany's World Cup quarter-final win. "If it had gone in it would have been a goalkeeper's mistake," he said.Daily Mirror

Germany defender Mats Hummels has said the "next dream has become reality" after his goal earns his country a place in the semi-finals of the World Cup.Independent

France coach Didier Deschamps described Brazil 2014 as a "very beautiful World Cup". Following his team's exit at the quarter-final stage Deschamps said: "I remember a few years ago some very boring World Cup matches. Not this year. What I've seen is extremely entertaining with a lot of intensity."Daily Telegraph

TRANSFER GOSSIP

Premier League champions Manchester City are weighing up a £25m move for Everton's England international midfielder Ross Barkley, 20, using former Toffees midfielder Jack Rodwell, 23, as bait. Daily Mirror

City are keen to keep striker Alvaro Negredo but would let the 28-year-old Spain international leave for £25m. Sun

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce is pondering a £12m bid for 25-year-old Ecuador international striker Enner Valencia, who scored all three of his country's goals in the World Cup group matches and hit 18 goals in just 23 games for Mexican club Pachuca. Daily Star

Liverpool are interested in Seattle Sounders star DeAndre Yedlin and could invite the 20-year-old full-back on trial during pre-season. Metro

Barcelona are yet to reach an agreement with Liverpool over the signing of Uruguay striker Luis Suarez, 27, with a deal not expected until next week. Guardian

Daily Express back page
Daily Express back page

Former Chelsea and England defender Ashley Cole, 33, is in talks with Serie A side Roma about a two-year deal. Daily Mail

Tottenham and Arsenal are both interested in Netherlands World Cup centre-back Joel Veltman, 22. Daily Mirror

Veltman's fellow Netherlands defender Daryl Janmaat, 24, interests Newcastle and Manchester United. Daily Mail

Netherlands striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, 30, has said he needs to speak to Schalke after being linked with Liverpool. London Evening Standard

France midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin, 24, is so confident of leaving Southampton this summer he has told his St Mary's team-mates he will not return after the World Cup. Daily Star

QPR manager Harry Redknapp is considering a move for former Arsenal striker Eduardo, 31. Daily Mirror

Stoke are also monitoring free agent Eduardo, who came to the end of his contract with Shakhtar Donetsk following four years playing in Ukraine. Stoke Sentinel

Chelsea have made a move for 24-year-old Bayern Munich midfielder Toni Kroos, a target for Real Madrid. Daily Star

Brighton's interest in Australian A-League midfielder Luke Brattan has been dashed by an injury to the 24-year-old. Argus

OTHER GOSSIP

AC Milan president Silvio Berlusconi says he came close to selling striker Mario Balotelli to an unnamed Premier League club before the World Cup. Times

Manchester United midfielder Marouane Fellaini, 26, says he does not have to prove himself as a footballer. Independent

Manchester United legend Paul Scholes believes that Liverpool forward Luis Suarez would be making a 'mistake' by signing for Barcelona and claims he would not gel with star player Lionel Messi. Daily Mail

Former England goalkeeper Nigel Martyn believes Everton's Tim Howard, 35, can continue playing in the Premier League into his 40s. Liverpool Echo

Crystal Palace co-chairman Steve Browett says there are improvements happening around Selhurst Park but would not reveal exactly what, admitting fellow co-chairman Steve Parish is looking to surprise fans. Croydon Advertiser

BEST OF SOCIAL MEDIA

Reaction to Brazil's 2-1 victory over Colombia in the World Cup quarter-final, in which Neymar suffered his serious injury:

Neymar's Barcelona team-mate and Argentina star Lionel Messi wrote on his Facebook page: "Neymar, I hope you recover very soon friend!"

Paulinho's Twitter tribute to Neymar
Paulinho's Twitter tribute to Neymar

Tottenham and Brazil midfielder Paulinho on Twitter posted a picture of Neymar celebrating with his team-mates and the message which translates as "Strength, Brother! @neymarjr"

Brazil striker Fred on Facebook: "We have one more reason to play with heart in this cup. Neymar, rest assured that our group loves you and give life to win this title for you. You were and continue to be the ace and the soul of our team. The whole of Brazil is praying for you!"

Match of the Day presenter and former England international striker Gary Lineker on Twitter:"Colombia, you have been an absolute delight at this World Cup. You will be missed. Thank you!"

QPR midfielder Joey Barton on Twitter: "Brazil scrap through again. The best player in the tournament goes home. Great end to end game. Sad to see James exit. I can't have them as WC winners. They have so many vulnerabilities. Yet they are two wins away? Worst Brazil side in a long time that...If that was a Big Sam team they'd be absolutely pillared for that performance. Because it's Scolari and Brazil, everybody has blinkers on..."

Actor, writer and musician Hugh Laurie: "Huge congratulations to Brazil. Ran themselves to butter." Hugh Laurie on Twitter

Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva questions criticism of fellow Brazilian David Luiz after the Paris St-Germain defender's brilliant free-kick in the World Cup victory over Colombia, tweeting: "And a few people say David Luiz isn't a good player... what a goal my friend @DavidLuiz_4."Lucas Leiva on Twitter

AND FINALLY

Some England supporters at the World Cup quarter-final between Germany and France painted their faces with the German flag and held up a banner intended for England manager Roy Hodgson that read: "Look what you've done to us Roy". Daily Mail

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