The winter transfer window is closed, but now it’s time to look ahead to the summer! Here are the new rumours floating around Europe’s big leagues and beyond.
TOP STORY: Spurs, Chelsea lead chase for Ramsdale
The England under-21 international has impressed in his first full season of Premier League football, making more than 100 saves so far — a tally beaten by only Newcastle United’s Martin Dubravka and Arsenal’s Bernd Leno.
Spurs are on the lookout for a new backup keeper, with Michel Vorm set to leave in the summer, but the club hierarchy are confident that Ramsdale can provide genuine competition to No. 1 Hugo Lloris, who made two high-profile errors in his side’s Champions League defeat to RB Leipzig on Tuesday.
Chelsea, meanwhile, remain unsure over the future of Kepa Arrizabalaga, who has looked uncertain between the sticks following the arrival of manager Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge last summer.
21.12 GMT: Could Man United make Odion Ighalo’s move to Old Trafford permanent?
The Nigerian has hit the ground rounding since arrive at United as a surprise signing on deadline day, scoring four goals in three starts. Ighalo, who supported United as a child, was keen to impress and has so far delivered even more than could have been expected.
Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who previously opened the door for Ighalo to make a case to stay, has been impressed and only furthered speculation about the striker’s future with his comments on Thursday.
“Odion has come in really well and he will improve and get better. But he has qualities we saw in him and needed and we need those qualities for next season.
“He’s a goal-scorer and a striker. He doesn’t worry too much about all that nonsense, build-up play – that’s a joke obviously.
“He knows his job and role in the team, and he’s very good with his back to goal.
“He’s a great link player, but maybe the best thing about him is his personality. He’s got the whole lot really.”
Igahlo’s arrival from Shanghai Shenhua was a major surprise but him earning a full-time spot at Old Trafford would be an even bigger surprise and some story.
20.18 GMT: Arsenal are weighing up a move for one of the heroes of Atletico Madrid’s Champions League triumph at Anfield, according to a report in The Telegraph.
The report says that Mikel Arteta and the Gunners will consider moving for central midfielder Thomas Partey once the transfer window reopens this summer. Partey, 26, was immense on Wednesday night, covering seemingly every blade of grass to protect the back four and frustrate Liverpool.
The Ghana international reportedly has a £42 million release clause and would be a major upgrade at the Emirates on the likes of Granit Xhaka, Lucas Torreira and Matteo Gueondouzi. Arsenal are definitely set to be in the market for a defensive midfielder with Xhaka and Torreira likely headed for the door and Partey, who has drawn Premier League interest before, would represent a real coup for the London club.
19.36 GMT: Sticking with the goalkeeper theme, Leicester and Liverpool have been handed good news in pursuit of reported target Ugurcan Cakir.
The Trabzonspor ‘keeper, has been linked with both the Foxes and the Reds and is now expected to be sold this summer. Trabzonspor’s president Ahmet Agaoglu recently hinted that the club will be forced to sell its top players in order to raise between €10-20 million to dig into the club’s growing debt.
“Just like we did with [Alexander[ Sorloth we have to sign players, make them shine and sell for a profit,” Agaoglu is quoted as saying by website Turkish-Football.com.
“That is our reality.
“We have to sell players and replace them with the next undervalued talent.
Cakir, 23, has made one appearance for the Turkish senior national team and would be welcome at Anfield, after Adrian’s nightmare on Wednesday vs. Atletico Madrid.
18.55 GMT: Chelsea’s goalkeeping saga has been a constant sideshow to the Blues’ first season under Frank Lampard.
With record signing Kepa Arrizabalaga having been dropped to the bench recently, speculation has increased that Lampard will sign a new goalkeeper come the summer, Former Scotland international and football pundit Graeme Souness has urged the Blues to move for Atletico Madrid No. 1 Jan Oblak.
Speaking on Virgin Media Sport following the Atletico/Liverpool semi, Souness praised the Slovenian goalkeeper after his heroics at Anfield.
“There you go Chelsea! Chelsea are looking for a goalkeeper. He’s been a top man for a long time, said Souness.”
Could Chelsea move for the £103 million man? Stay tuned…
18.11 GMT: It has been a whirlwind few months for Arsenal youngster Bukayo Saka but does his long-term future lie at the Emirates?
Mikel Arteta hopes so, saying in a recent news conference:
“The club is doing what it has to do and is having conversations.
“[Hopefully] we’ll get it resolved.”
The 18-year-old winger’s contract expires after the 2021 season and Man United have been linked with interest. Saka has mostly deputised at left-back for for the depleted Gunners, impressing while notching three goals and nine assists.
17.29 GMT: Celtic centre-back Kristoffer Ajer is reportedly set to leave Parkhead this summer.
The Norway international’s agent Tore Pedersen recently told Norwegian news agency NTB as much:
“He [Kristoffer] will not extend (his contract) with Celtic and will leave this summer.
There are several clubs that are interested – but I can’t go into names anymore.
“There are many who have followed him for a long period of time.
“There are also clubs who would like to have him – but who can’t afford it.”
The 21-year-old has previously been linked with Leicester City and a reunion with former manager Brendan Rodgers.
16.43 GMT: Everton splashed €27.5 million on young Italian striker Moise Kean last summer, but so far the youngster has struggled to adapt to life in England.
Apparently that is not enough to scare the Toffees off Azzurri strikers, Tuttosport suggesting Everton one of the clubs interested in signing Torino frontman Andrea Belotti. The Italian site lists Everton, Milan, Inter, Napoli and Roma as potential suitors for the 26-year-old Belotti. The Italy striker, who has scored 15 goals in 31 appearances over all competitions, is valued at €40m by TransferMarkt.
16.00 GMT: South African goalkeeper Dino Visser, 30, has signed for Crewe Alexandra after leaving Exeter City.
Sorry, it’s quite quiet on the transfer front today as there are games and leagues being shut down every few hours.
14.55 GMT: Wolves are in action in the Europa League tonight (assuming the coronavirus doesn’t see it called off) and they have been linked with a move for Real Madrid forward James Rodriguez. Would that be a good idea?
14.06 GMT: Irish defender Enda Stevens has signed a new contract at Sheffield United, keeping him at the club until 2023.
13.15 GMT: Wolves striker Raul Jimenez says he made a good decision to move to the Premier League rather than China when he joined the club from Portuguese giants Benfica for £30m in 2018.
Jiminez, 28, has starred with 39 goals in 87 games but the Mexico international could have been in a very different place.
“It was difficult because it was for a lot of millions,” he told Sky Sports of a potential move to the Chinese Super League. “But I knew it was not the time to make that decision to — I can say it — almost end my career. It is not the same being in China as being in Europe. I think that I made the right choice.
“I never quit. I always kept working and doing the things that I know with a smile on my face knowing that if my chance came I would be ready to take it. Now I am in a good moment.”
12.04 GMT: The coronavirus outbreak has impacted soccer all over Europe, with postponements, domestic and cup games taking place behind closed doors, and travel bans preventing teams from travelling. There’s also a growing concern over transfers, writes Tor-Kristian Karlsen.
Behind the scenes, teams are struggling to conduct basic business when it comes to scouting and planning their summer transfer business. The knock-on effects of this outbreak could be significant. With no access to an increasing number of matches across top leagues, and travel becoming increasingly difficult to those games where spectators are still allowed, can they properly scout the players they need to improve their squads?
11.29 GMT: Would you rather have David De Gea or Dean Henderson in goal?
10.25 GMT: Were you wondering why Wigan Athletic and U.S. defender Antonee Robinson didn’t get his £6m January move to AC Milan?
“I wanted to update our supporters on my current situation as I have had a number of people asking if I’m ok and why I have not played since January,” he said.
“During my medical for a potential transfer to AC Milan on deadline day, an irregularity was picked up in my heart rhythm. Further testing was required to ensure the move could be finalised and ratified, though there was not enough time to complete this before the deadline.”
09.48 GMT: Tottenham might be after a new goalkeeper but they also want Real Madrid defender Eder Militao, according to reports.
Militao, 22, only joined Real in the summer from Porto, but has spent much of the time on the bench since. Real want £70m for him and Tottenham are ready to pay it.
However, they’ll need to keep some cash back for RB Leipzig midfielder Marcel Sabitzer, too. Perhaps as much as £40m.
The Daily Express says that Spurs will fight Arsenal for the 25-year-old Austria, who they saw up close and personal in the Champions League this week.
09.00 GMT: Borussia Dortmund chief Hans-Joachim Watzke knows he has a fight on his hands to keep Jadon Sancho out of the clutches of every top in Europe this summer, so he’s gone on the charm offensive.
He told RMC: “Jadon is a great, great talent, maybe the greatest talent in Europe currently of players under the age of 21. In my opinion, he has the potential to become one of the two or three best players in the world in the years to come.
“We are going to do our best to hold on to him for as long as possible. We have a very good relationship with him. But if one day, he comes to us and says that he wants to leave the club, then we will discuss it. But that is not our primary option. The primary option is to keep him for as long as possible.”
PAPER TALK (by James Capps)
Atletico join Tonali tug of war
Atleti boss Diego Simeone is said to be a huge admirer of the 19-year-old, who has earned rave reviews for his performances in the heart of midfield since Brescia returned to Serie A this season.
Italian giants Juventus and Inter Milan were initially reported to be the only two clubs with a significant chance of landing the Italy international, who has had a €55m price tag slapped on him by Brescia owner Massimo Cellino.
Clubs in the Bundesliga and the Premier League have also been credited with an interest in the teenager, who has made 23 appearances for Brescia this season, scoring once and assisting a further five goals.
Juventus fancy Ferran Torres
The 20-year-old impressed Juve scouts during Los Che‘s Champions League campaign, in which the youngster had a hand in four goals in six appearances, as well as scoring four times in La Liga this season.
The Serie A leaders have been on the lookout for a new winger since the start of the campaign, and had looked set to seal a deal for Fiorentina’s Federico Chiesa in the close season, but with negotiations stalling between the two clubs, Maurizio Sarri’s side are now seriously considering switching targets.
Despite having a huge €100m release clause in his Valencia contract, Torres’ deal expires in little more than a year’s time, which could provide Juventus with significant negotiating power when the transfer window opens in the summer.
– Bild reports that Schalke are keeping tabs on two Premier League goalkeepers as they prepare for the imminent departure of highly rated stopper Alexander Nubel. The Gelsenkirchen side are checking out Norwich City’s Tim Krul, as well as Zack Steffen, who is on loan at Fortuna Dusseldorf from Manchester City.
– Chelsea and Tottenham are plotting moves for Ajax winger David Neres, according to Calciomercato. The 23-year-old Brazilian shone in the Dutch side’s Champions League semifinal run last season, and a string of European clubs have sent scouts to watch the forward in the past 12 months.
– Calciomercato writes that Napoli are eyeing up misfiring Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic. The Serbia international has scored just twice since arriving at the Bernabeu last summer in a €60m move from Eintracht Frankfurt, and Los Blancos are looking to claw back around €45m of that fee by selling the 22-year-old to Gennaro Gattuso’s side.