The winter transfer window is closed, but now it’s time to look ahead to the summer! Here are the new rumours floating around following the Jan. 31 deadline day.
TOP STORY: Could Lallana return to Saints?
The 31-year-old midfielder has been besieged by injuries during his time at Anfield. He has made just 13 Premier League appearances for the Reds this season, and only 25 between 2017 and 2019.
Earlier in the week it was reported that Leicester had made an approach for the England international, with Brendan Rodgers keen to be reunited with the player he recruited during his time in charge of Liverpool. Arsenal, Tottenham and West Ham are all also credited with interest in acquiring Lallana on a free transfer this summer.
But surely a return to boyhood club Saints would be the most romantic of options.
22.40 GMT: Leganes manager Javier Aguirre has some thoughts about losing forward Martin Braithwaite to Barcelona outside of the official transfer window: “They screwed us. … But today the sun comes out, and as long as FIFA lets us play with 11, fantastic. I am happy with what I have.”
21.13 GMT: Twenty-seven-year-old Tigres winger and Mexico international Jurgen Damm has signed a pre-contract with an “important” club in MLS to join on a free transfer this summer, according to Fox Sports.
19.46: Lille’s 22-year-old centre-back Gabriel has been monitored by Arsenal, Everton and Paris Saint-Germain – the latter with an eye toward the Brazilian replacing compatriot Thiago Silva at the heart of the Parisians’ defence – but Le10 Sport writes that Leicester have joined the race for the player who could be on the move this summer for €30m.
18.19 GMT: Arsenal are preparing for a massive rebuild this summer, according to the Mirror. The Gunners expect to raise significant funds through the sale of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and potentially 20-year-old Matteo Guendouzi. That cash will then be spent on 23-year-old Valencia midfielder Carlos Soler — who has a £140m release clause – and RB Leipzig centre-back Dayot Upamecano.
16.52 GMT: Manchester United centre-back Chris Smalling is having a strong season on loan at Roma, and the BBC reported quotes from the 30-year-old on his hopes of making his move to the Italian capital permanent: “Yeah, I think the plan at the start of the season was to contribute as much as I can and then hopefully if we’ve all had a good season and hit our ambitions then those discussions can take place.”
15.25 GMT: Speaking of City players who could leave … Angelino is on loan at RB Leipzig until the end of the season and the German club’s manager Julian Nagelsmann has been impressed by the full-back. But it will all depend on how much cash is in the bank this summer.
“He has a juicy price tag,” he told kicker. “We first have to see what is in the wallet and whether the player and the selling club will play along. We will see in the future.”
Kicker claims Leipzig have an option to buy him outright for around €20 million (£17m/$22m) at the end of the season.
15.00 GMT: Manchester City have been linked with a move for Serge Gnabry if Bayern Munich land Leroy Sane. But do the FC TV guys agree?
Meanwhile, Pep Guardiola has said his players remain committed to City despite the prospect of a Champions League ban hanging over the club.
“I’m completely sure of the commitment of our players,” Guardiola told a news conference ahead of the trip to Leicester on Saturday.
“It’s about what they’ve shown for many years, nothing changes, at the end of the season nobody knows what is going to happen. With calm we decide what we want, but for the next three months the commitment will be incredible.”
14.07 GMT: Two years after his errors in the Champions League final defeat to Real Madrid, goalkeeper Loris Karius could be back at Liverpool.
But the Athletic reports that Besiktas won’t pay the £7.25m required to sign the German permanently after his loan spell and that sources close to the player say he’s expecting to be sold as Alisson and Adrian are key parts of the squad.
13.44 GMT: Newcastle tried to land Lille midfielder Boubakary Soumare for £35m in January “which would have nearly got to a club-record transfer,” according to Steve Bruce, and they are ready to return in the summer.
Soumare, 20, is highly rated and has been linked with Liverpool and Man United. But Le10 Sport claims that Newcastle are willing to offer him a guarantee of playing time, which could tip the scales in their favour.
12.56 GMT: Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has been speaking.
On wanting defender and club captain Sergio Ramos to extend his contract, he said: “Yes, of course. I want Sergio with me always and we want Sergio with us always. It looks fine to me.”
And on Manchester City winger Raheem Sterling praising Madrid (see 08.00 GMT): “I don’t know, I can’t talk about a player who isn’t mine, what I can say about the player is he’s a really good player. I have no doubts.”
12.04 GMT: Martin Braithwaite was playing at Middlesbrough in the second tier of English football in January 2019. Now he’s living the dream.
The Brazilian’s deal expires in the summer and, ahead of Chelsea vs. Tottenham this weekend, he’s being linked with a reunion with Spurs boss Jose Mourinho.
The speculation has not been helped by quotes from Willian on Thursday in which he said: “People ask me about the best coaches I have had. For sure, Mourinho is one of them … I loved his man-management, how he organised training, how he spoke in meetings. I learned a lot from him.”
Onana, 23, has been linked to his former club Barcelona, but would only act as backup to Marc-Andre ter Stegen, which would be the kiss of death to his career.
Both academy products are out of contract at the end of the season, and have been linked to other clubs, but manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer remains hopeful deals could still be done.
“We’re still in talks with them,” said Solskjaer. “The boys have got a great attitude. They’re absolutely top class boys and we’re doing what we can to keep them because in a few years we can see them becoming very very good players.”
Fruchtl, 20, is highly rated by Bayern but not so much that it didn’t stop them agreeing to sign Schalke keeper Alexander Nubel on a free transfer in the summer. And with Manuel Neuer still playing a big part for club and country, Fruchtl can expect to sit on the sidelines for a while longer.
08.45 GMT: Anyone would think that the Real Madrid players have been told to go on a charm offensive of late.
Casemiro told Onda Cero: “I speak with Neymar most days and the truth is that I would rather have him with us here at Real. He and Kylian Mbappe are both great players — explosive and totally different.”
08.21 GMT: LA Galaxy’s Argentinian coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto has denied rumours that his outfit tried to lure Barcelona star Lionel Messi to the club.
Speaking to reporters, Schelotto was asked if contact had been made with Messi to bring him to the MLS, he said: “No. Nothing. There’s no truth and nothing to state. The fact that I have a certain rapport with him could open the possibility but there was no type of approach, obviously.”
On Thursday, Messi brushed off speculation the could make a move away from Camp Nou, declaring Barcelona is “my home” to El Mundo Deportivo.
Of course a transfer came up and, asked about a move to Real, he said: “Right now with City I’m really happy, but as I say Madrid is a fantastic club. When you see the white shirt you know exactly what it stands for, it’s massive. At the same time I’ve got a massive contract with City now that I’ve got to respect. But it’s a fantastic club … It’s something you see all the while. But as I said I’m a City player, I’m enjoying my football at the moment even though things haven’t gone how we wanted in the league.
“We’ve got a massive opportunity now in the Champions League, but I keep saying Real Madrid is a fantastic club, with lovely weather. But as I keep saying, at the moment I’m quite happy at City … No-one knows what the future holds. I’m a person that’s always open to challenges, but right now my challenge is at City.”
PAPER TALK (by Shaun Reynolds)
Chelsea raise price on Inter target Alonso
There is no love lost between Chelsea and former manager Antonio Conte. That’s been apparent since the Italian took his former employers to court over the remainder of his salary following his dismissal in summer of 2018.
But the latest such example of the sour relationship between the now Inter coach and the West London club is the Nerazzurri‘s pursuit of Chelsea left-back Marcos Alonso, Calciomercato reports. The San Siro side were keen to add the 29-year-old in January, but couldn’t get a deal done. And now, the Blues have raised the asking price on Alonso to €30m.
That’s a fee that Inter are unwilling to pay, which leaves this transfer tale dead in the water, right? Not exactly.
Alonso isn’t central to the plans of Chelsea boss Frank Lampard, having made just eight appearances in the league this season. Should the former Fiorentina man ask for a move away, the hierarchy at Stamford Bridge may just lower their asking price.
Madrid target another teenage sensation
It’s become something of a habit. In 2017, Real Madrid struck an agreement to sign then-17-year-old Vinicius Jr. A year later, they signed Rodrygo, also 17 at the time. One day after turning 18, just last month, Reinier was signed from Flamengo.
Los Blancos have a predilection for teenage talents, and Marca writes that the La Liga leaders have another 17-year-old in their sights: Rennes’ Eduardo Camavinga. The holding midfielder has impressed in Ligue 1 this season, drawing the attention of some of Europe’s biggest clubs.
But Madrid will look to beat them to the punch for the France U21 international. With Camavinga having just two years remaining on his contract come the summer, it may be the ideal time for Rennes to cash in.
– Calciomercato reports that Inter recently rejected a bid from Manchester City totaling €70m for centre-back Milan Skriniar, and another from Barcelona, and won’t do business for the 25-year-old Slovakia international for anything less than €90m.
– Twenty-three-year-old Argentina international centre-back Alan Franco has refused to train with club Independiente in order to push through a move to MLS giants LA Galaxy, according to Fox Sports Argentina.