Transfer notebook: Ten Hag’s relationship with Rashford ‘frosty’, Sterling to snub Saudi Arabia offer, Newcastle and West Ham target Championship star
EPL

Transfer notebook: Ten Hag’s relationship with Rashford ‘frosty’, Sterling to snub Saudi Arabia offer, Newcastle and West Ham target Championship star

Mar 3, 2024

Erik ten Hag is in desperate need of his own Mark Robins moment when Manchester United travel to Nottingham Forest on Wednesday.

Robins’s FA Cup third round winner at the City Ground in January 1990 is widely claimed to have been the goal that saved Sir Alex Ferguson from the sack.

Ten Hag's relationship with Rashford is believed to be frosty and his long-term future as manager is in doubt

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Ten Hag’s relationship with Rashford is believed to be frosty and his long-term future as manager is in doubtCredit: Getty

United went on to win the cup – the first silverware of what would prove to be a trophy-laden period under Fergie spanning more than two decades.

With the Red Devils eight points adrift of the Premier League top-four following Saturday’s dismal 2-1 defeat at home to Fulham, the FA Cup – United vs Forest is live on talkSPORT – is looking like Ten Hag’s only route to salvaging a dreadful season.

While new minority owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe is not believed to be in a rush to make a change in the dugout, Ten Hag can expect to come under increased scrutiny between now and the end of the season.

As well as being his eyes at matches, Ratcliffe’s right-hand man Sir Dave Brailsford is a regular visitor to United’s Carrington training ground.

Brailsford will be paying close attention to the connection between Ten Hag and his players, with one well-placed source suggesting to talkSPORT that relations between the Dutchman and the out-of-form Marcus Rashford in particular are frosty.

If Ratcliffe did decide to move on from Ten Hag he is known to be an admirer of Brighton boss Roberto de Zerbi as well as the Italian’s predecessor Graham Potter.

Sterling staying put

Raheem Sterling is ready to snub a big-money move to Saudi Arabia to stay at Chelsea, talkSPORT understands.

England international Sterling is among a number of Premier League stars on the Saudi Pro League’s list of targets.

Sterling remains committed to Chelsea despite interest from Saudi Arabia

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Sterling remains committed to Chelsea despite interest from Saudi ArabiaCredit: Getty

However, Sterling has a contract at Stamford Bridge until at least the summer of 2027 and remains committed to helping the Blues get back to challenging for major honours.

Sterling, 29, has scored eight goals in 32 games this season and is seen by Chelsea boss Mauricio Pochettino as a leader in a young dressing room.

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Return of ex-Villa starlet?

Cameron Archer is set to make a swift move back to Aston Villa unless Sheffield United pull off a miracle relegation escape.

England Under-21 striker Archer only joined the Blades in the summer in an £18million deal as Villa cashed in on their academy graduate to help stay in line with Premier League spending rules.

However, talkSPORT can confirm the Champions League hopefuls inserted a clever clause in the contract meaning they can buy Archer back for a cut-price fee if United are relegated.

Walsall-born Archer scored four goals in 14 senior appearances for Villa before switching to Bramall Lane.

Archer has four goals in 24 games for Sheffield United since his move from boyhood club Aston Villa in the summer

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Archer has four goals in 24 games for Sheffield United since his move from boyhood club Aston Villa in the summerCredit: Getty

Championship star wanted

West Ham and Newcastle are both keeping tabs on Ipswich defender Leif Davis.

Davis has been one of the stars of Ipswich’s unexpected push for promotion to the Premier League and since the start of last season has set up 26 goals.

West Ham are in the market for a new left-back as they look to replace long-serving Aaron Cresswell while Newcastle have also had issues on that side of their back-four.

Davis, who cost Ipswich a bargain £1.2m from Leeds in 2021, is sure to be sought after if Ipswich come up short in their push for the top-flight.

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