The coronavirus pandemic has made the transfer market uncertain — and you can find out when the windows open and close here — but here are the rumours floating around Europe’s big leagues and beyond.
TOP STORY: Messi tells Neymar of Man City move
Emerging from ESPN Brasil’s Jorge Nicola is a spectacular wrinkle that makes this saga even more breathtaking, however.
The commentator reports that Messi has contacted Neymar to inform him of his move to the Etihad. And this is where it really gets good: There is an insinuation that the 33-year-old has encouraged his former Camp Nou companion to leave Paris Saint-Germain and join him in Pep Guardiola’s side.
Neymar has two years remaining on his PSG contract, however, and the Parisian club’s owners have proved stubborn negotiators in the past. If Messi did plan a rendezvous with Neymar in Manchester, City will have to come up with some serious coin — while navigating the financial fair play regulations they were adjudged to have breached in February.
09.01 BST: Chelsea announced the signing of Leicester City defender Ben Chilwell on Wednesday.
Sources told ESPN on Friday that the deal was close to being done after Leicester dropped their £80m valuation, and the two clubs eventually agreed a deal for £50m.
Frank Lampard’s side may not be able to use him right away as an heel injury could prevent him from participating in the start of the season.
ESPN FC’s Craig Burley assesses Chelsea’s newest left back.
08.34 BST: Tottenham have targeted Wolves defender Matt Doherty to boost their options at full-back, The Independent reports.
The versatile Doherty, 28, has been a mainstay in the Wolves side since they returned to the Premier League two seasons ago.
Spurs see the Republic of Ireland international as a replacement for Serge Aurier, who is set to leave the club this summer. Like Aurier, Doherty is valuable for his attacking contribution, having scored eight Premier League goals and registered eight assists in the last two seasons.
The Independent reports that Wolves want £20m for Doherty, though Spurs are hoping to negotiate a lower initial fee and load the deal with add-ons.
08.00 BST: Dean Henderson ended speculation over his Manchester United future by signing a new five-year contract at Old Trafford on Wednesday, with the option of a further 12 months to be triggered before June 2025.
The 23-year-old, who has been named in the England squad for next month’s Nations League games against Iceland and Denmark, has spent the last two seasons on loan at Sheffield United. His performances for Chris Wilder’s team last season led to Henderson being linked with a summer move to Chelsea.
But Henderson has now committed his future to United, sparking the prospect of a battle for the No. 1 spot this season with David De Gea.
PAPER TALK (by Harry Kettle): Liverpool face Brewster decision
The 20-year-old starlet has proved himself to be more than just an intriguing talent during preseason, scoring in games against Stuttgart and FC Salzburg.
Jurgen Klopp already has plenty of great attacking options, but Brewster could easily turn out to be something special.
Veteran defender Thiago Silva will undergo his Chelsea medical on Thursday ahead of a move to Stamford Bridge, Sky Sports reports.
The 35-year-old’s deal is in the closing stages, with “finishing touches” being put on the agreement in the past 48 hours. Paris Saint-Germain seemingly made a last-minute bid to try to bring him back to the club, but it appears that was in vain.
The plan is for Silva to join on a 12-month contract, but if it all goes well, he could end up staying for a year beyond that.
– Sky Sports is reporting that Celtic might consider a move for Atletico Madrid striker Ivan Saponjic if they lose Odsonne Edouard, or any striker for that matter, this summer. The belief is that it would take an absolutely huge offer to tempt the Scottish champions into selling Edouard, but with the future of Leigh Griffiths also being a topic of discussion, they might have to start thinking about going on the attack for a new man up top.
– Inter Milan have struck a deal to sign Sandro Tonali from Brescia, Gazzetta dello Sport reports. While a string of top clubs have been in the mix to try to sign Tonali for many months now, the San Siro residents are at the front of the queue and, if this report is to be believed, they’ve managed to land their man for a strong fee of €35m.
– Fulham are closing in on the permanent £8m signing of midfielder Harrison Reed, the Evening Standard reports. Reed was deemed to be a vital piece of the puzzle in Scott Parker’s side as the Londoners earned promotion back to the Premier League last season, and in the wake of a successful loan spell, it seems the Southampton prodigy is heading back to the capital.