Saturday gossip: Stones, Blanc, Balotelli, Goetze, Pogba

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Real Madrid have joined the race to sign Everton centre-back John Stones, 21, following the recommendation of former manager Rafael Benitez. (Daily Mail)external-link

The Guardian leads on clubs hoping to create FA Cup upsets

Manchester United have made an enquiry about the availability of Paris St-Germain coach Laurent Blanc to become their new manager, either midway through this season or at the end of the current campaign. (Le10 Sport via Daily Star)external-link

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has put Watford striker Odion Ighalo, 26, on his list of transfer targets as he lines up signing a forward in the summer. (Daily Mirror)external-link

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has held talks with striker Mario Balotelli's agent and told him he wants the 25-year-old back at Anfield following his loan spell at AC Milan. (Tuttomercatoweb via Metro)external-link

West Brom are keen to sign forward Gabriel Agbonlahor, 29, from local rivals Aston Villa before the end of January. (Sun)external-link

Bayern Munich midfielder Mario Gotze, 23, has said his future at the German club is uncertain as he has spoken highly of Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, who managed him at Borussia Dortmund. (Bild via Daily Express)external-link

Real Madrid may consider making a bid of more than £100m next summer for Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba, 22, to thwart both Manchester City and Barcelona. (Sun)external-link

Paul Pogba
Paul Pogba moved to Juventus from Manchester United in July 2012

Bournemouth are close to breaking their club transfer record as they are on the brink of signing Wolves striker Benik Afobe, 22, for £10m. (Daily Telegraph)external-link

Everton are looking to bolster their defence in January with Leeds United right-back Sam Byram, 22, a possible target. (Liverpool Echo)external-link

West Ham are interested in signing Juventus striker Simone Zaza, 24, on loan this month, but any move will depend on whether they can offload players. (London Evening Standard) external-link

Sunderland may have pulled out of a move for Lorient defender Lamine Kone, 26, but Aston Villa and Norwich remain interested in signing the Ivory Coast international. (Daily Express)external-link

Newcastle midfielder Cheick Tiote, 29, is a target for Chinese Premier League side Shanghai Greenland Shenua. (Newcastle Chronicle)external-link

Stoke City are considering making an offer for 22-year-old West Brom striker Saido Berahino, who was the subject of a number of rejected bids from Tottenham last summer. (Guardian)external-link

Tottenham keeper Hugo Lloris, 29, says Spurs have a "strong team" but need "to add some experience" to become a great team.(Talksport)external-link

QPR have told keeper Rob Green he will be dropped if he does not secure a move away from the club in January as the 35-year-old has a clause in his contract which will extend his current deal if he plays five more times for the club. (London Evening Standard)external-link

Best of social media

Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil knows how to deliver a good sidestep. During a Twitter Q&A he was asked to choose between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi and replied by answering with the name of Gunners team-mate Mathieu Flamini.

Mesut Ozil on Twitter

And finally

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino says he will sing a Chas and Dave-style duet with the club's chairman Daniel Levy if Spurs win the FA Cup this season. (Daily Mirror)external-link

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