The main topic in the sports papers this morning is the news that Tita Vilanova has had to step down as Barcelona manager due to a recurrence of the throat cancer that he was treated for last season in New York.
The news broke on Friday evening, and messages of support have been pouring in for the 44-year-old, including from Real Madrid, who sent a message to wish him, his family, and FC Barcelona well.
In other news, Gareth Bale is still the object of Real Madrid’s affections, despite saying this week that he is looking forward to improving under Tottenham Hotspurs boss Andre Villas Boas.
According to Marca, Los Blancos are in the process of raising funds for the transfer. They’ve already received 22 million euros from the sales of Jose Callejon and Raul Albiol to Napoli, while they should receive a substantial chunk of any transfer fee should Ezqeuiel Garay complete a deal to leave Benfica for Manchester United – as is rumoured to be close to completion.
The futures of Gonzalo Higuain and Fabio Coentrao also need to be sorted out, but Los Blancos should be able to receive 65 million euros more for the sale of the pair.
Pre-season preparations will move up a gear this weekend as the 9-time European Cup winners head to England to play Bournemouth in their first friendly match.