The transfer windows in Europe’s top leagues are closed, but it’s never too late to look forward to January! Click here to view the latest transfers, and keep up to date with the newest gossip below.
TOP STORY: United target Dembele, Mandzukic
Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is aware that he needs to add to his strike force in the January transfer window, and he already has two names in mind, according to the Independent.
Juventus frontman Mario Mandzukic and Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele are currently under scrutiny, with United glaringly short of options following the sale of Romelu Lukaku to Inter Milan in the summer.
United were seemingly all set to make a move for Mandzukic in August but were put off by the player’s age (33). However, United’s recent form, which includes the recent disappointing loss to West Ham, plus injuries to both Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford might have United thinking they need to make a short-term decision to ensure that they stay competitive this season.
Solskjaer is said to be already discussing potential January moves with Ed Woodward.
22.41 BST: That’s going to do it for Wednesday’s live edition of Transfer Talk, but be sure to check back in a few short hours when we return with the latest gossip pulled from Thursday’s back pages.
21.41 BST: Inter failed with a last-minute bid for Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, according to Calciomercato, but will return for the Serbia international in the windows to come.
19.54 BST: David Beckham is in talks with former Real Madrid manager Santi Solari to be the first coach of his MLS expansion side Inter Miami when they begin play in 2020, the Mail reports.
18.07 BST: Argentine giants Boca Juniors are preparing a concrete offer to Zlatan Ibrahimovic, according to AS, with the LA Galaxy forward’s contract in MLS expiring at the end of 2019.
16.30 BST: FIFA’s Football Stakeholders Committee has recommended the introduction of a cap on agents’ commissions (sorry Mino Raiola) and a limit on loans of players (sorry Chelsea).
– establishment of a cap on agents’ commissions (10% of the transfer fee for agents of releasing clubs, 3% of the player’s remuneration for player agents and 3% of the player’s remuneration for agents of engaging clubs);
– limitation of multiple representation to avoid conflicts of interest.
– to prevent player hoarding and ensure that loans have a valid sporting purpose for youth development as opposed to commercial purposes, limitations on international loans of players aged 22 and older;
– as of the 2020/2021 season, a limit of eight international loans in and out, going down to six by the 2022/2023 season, with a maximum of three loans in and three loans out between the same clubs.
15.51 BST: Tammy Abraham has scored seven goals in six games for Chelsea, but it could have been very different if AC Milan hadn’t rejected a move for him this summer.
Tuttomercatoweb says that Milan bosses thought the 20-year-old Abraham too inexperienced to shine in Serie A and opted not to take him on loan for the season. Which has turned out quite nicely for Frank Lampard.
14.43 BST: Manchester City are in something of a defensive crisis, although you could have been fooled by the 8-0 win over Watford at the weekend.
The exit of Vincent Kompany this summer and now injuries to Aymeric Laporte and John Stones have left the champions short at the back but Fotospor in Turkey claims that impressive Leicester City defender Caglar Soyuncu is now on their radar.
Soyuncu, 23, has been one of the top performers in the Premier League this season as the Turkey international has taken his chance to shine after the £80m exit of Harry Maguire to Man United.
13.50 BST: FC Salzburg forward Erling Braut Haland has praised Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s impact on his career and said he has always dreamed of playing in the Premier League.
Haland, 19, hit the headlines recently when he scored a hat trick in Salzburg’s 6-2 win over Genk in the Champions League group stage opener and has of course been linked with Man United, given Solskjaer managed him while at Molde.
12.49 BST: Outgoing Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness has heaped praise on new arrival Benjamin Pavard.
Pavard, 23, won the World Cup with France this summer and then moved for €35m (his release clause) from Stuttgart to Bayern.
“He has already shown after a few weeks that he will be one of the best transfers that we’ve ever made,” Hoeness told German TV channel Sport1. “For me, what a player costs isn’t what matters. It was clear to me that he could be an outstanding signing — particularly because of his great character.”
11.23 BST: Manchester United’s owners, the Glazer family, have sanctioned a three-year plan to restore the club’s on-field fortunes, with sources having told ESPN FC there is now an acceptance the team is unlikely to challenge for the Premier League until the 2021-22 season at the earliest.
Sources said that the “patience” of the United hierarchy extends to the belief that the so-called “cultural reset” cited by Ed Woodward last season will require three full seasons, and accompanying transfer windows, before the mistakes of the post-Sir Alex Ferguson years can be properly rectified.
As well as investing in the playing squad, United are also determined to improve their structure off the pitch, with the search for a technical director still ongoing.
09.51 BST: Atletico Madrid CEO Miguel Angel Gil Marin claims his team has had “to reinvent itself” following the departures of Antoine Griezmann, Lucas Hernandez and Rodri this summer.
The Rojiblancos had plenty of work to do after defensive trio Diego Godin, Juanfran and Filipe Luis left as free agents while Lucas, Rodri and Griezmann departed after Bayern Munich, Manchester City and Barcelona, respectively, activated their release clauses.
Speaking at the World Football Summit, Gil Marin said: “The departures of Lucas, Griezmann and Rodrigo forced us to take very risky decisions and we have suffered because of the release clauses. All in all we’ve had to change nine out of 20 players, which is not easy. We’ve had to reinvent ourselves. We have completed a generational change and the team has not been hindered by it, thanks to the work done by our coach Simeone.”
Atletico delivered by signing eight players for €245m, including Portuguese sensation Joao Felix from Benfica for a club record €126m, thus spending less than what they pocketed this summer from sales.
Gil Marin also spoke of the rise of Atletico over the past decade and said: “Our revenue in the past 10 years has gone from €100m to €500m and we have concentrated that on the changing room. It was a very risky strategy but we have gone from being 23rd to second in the UEFA ranking. We have sought balance to grow in sporting and social aspects and we have won nine titles in nine years. We have lost some finals but that has helped us grow and put us on the map in areas where we were not known.”
09.02 BST: Manchester United had scouts at the Stadio Mario Rigamonti on Tuesday night to watch Brescia midfielder Sandro Tonali, according to the
Tonali, 19, made 34 league appearances for Brescia last season as they won promotion up to Serie A, and has started all five of their matches since returning to Italy’s top flight.
The latest of those came last night against Juventus. While Tonali was unable to stop the defending champions leaving with a 2-1 win, the Italy under-21 international is likely to continue attracting attention from some of Europe’s biggest clubs this season. (Stream the match on ESPN+ in the U.S.)
Zaha sought a move out of Selhurst Park in the summer, with sources telling ESPN Fc in July that Arsenal had submitted a £40m bid but were told by Palace they would have to pay almost double that for the Ivory Coast international.
The 26-year-old had then come close to joining Everton on the Premier League’s transfer deadline day in August, only for Palace to turn down an offer of £55m plus striker Cenk Tosun, the Daily Mail reported at the time.
PAPER TALK (by Nick Judd)
Pogba-Madrid rumours start again
Staying in Manchester, the Paul Pogba rumours have started again, months before the January transfer window opens.
This time, Spanish title Diario Madrista is reporting that Pogba’s agent, Mino Raiola, has a plan to get the Frenchman’s move to Real Madrid over the line.
Pogba was a target for Los Blancos boss Zinedine Zidane throughout the summer, but the club seemingly ran out of funds after a busy transfer window.
However, Raiola plans to demand that Pogba’s pay rises to £600,000 a week, a fee that will force United to let their man go to get him off the books.
With United desperate to add more firepower in January, a windfall from any sale of Pogba could open the door for a move for Barcelona’s aforementioned Dembele, who has been valued at around £100m.
Silva to join Becks in Miami?
Silva’s contract comes to an end next summer, which is perfect timing for Beckham and his Miami project, and Calciomercato reports that Silva is considering a stateside move when his time in Manchester is over.
Silva joined City in 2010 from Valencia and has been a cornerstone of the club’s success ever since. He has made more than 400 appearances at the Etihad, scoring 72 goals and providing a whopping 134 assists. Such numbers would be welcome in MLS.
— Roma are looking to raid Fiorentina in an effort to reinforce their backline with the addition of German Pezzella, according to Calciomercato. The 28-year-old has been in excellent form, despite La Viola’s poor play, and has started every game so far. Roma have already added Chris Smalling to their squad on loan but are keen to further strengthen their options.
— Another from Calciomercato here. Juventus have already added Matthijs de Ligt to their backline, but now they’re casting their eyes over Brescia’s Andrea Cistana, one of the best defenders in Serie B as Brescia won promotion to Serie A. Cistana, who featured for Brescia in their 2-1 loss to Juve on Tuesday, has impressed in his four starts this season in the top flight, and Juve could see a Cistana-De Ligt partnership as the club’s long-term future.
— Following Tottenham’s embarrassing defeat to League Two Colchester United in the Carabao Cup, boss Mauricio Pochettino has suggested that he will delve back into the transfer market in January. The Mirror says the Argentine might think he has some unfinished business after failing to land all of his targets in the summer, while his current squad has managed just two wins so far this season in all competitions.