Barcelona, Blog - Transfer Talk, Blog Post, Clubs, Liverpool, Ousmane Dembélé, Transfers

La Liga correspondent Sid Lowe and the FC crew weigh in on the drama surrounding Ousmane Dembele at Barcelona and his links to Liverpool.
The FC panel answer your tweets on Liverpool’s precarious position in Group C, how Cavani’s absence affected PSG and if Ousmane Dembele or Malcom is more likely to leave Barca.

With the winter window opening soon, the rumour mill is beginning to gather pace. Who will be moving where come January? Transfer Talk has the latest.

TOP STORY: Liverpool ready record move for Barca’s Dembele

Liverpool are set to shatter their transfer record to sign Ousmane Dembele from Barcelona, according to the Sun.

France forward Dembele joined Barca last summer but could be on his way out amid questions over his attitude, with the Sun saying Jurgen Klopp “wants him to boost his team’s Premier League title chances.”

Klopp is reportedly so keen to sign the 21-year-old that he will spend £85 million, eclipsing the £75 million fee that brought Virgil van Dijk to Anfield.

The Sun says Klopp “is set to test Barca’s resolve on a player they bought from Borussia Dortmund for £135.5 million.”

Sources have told ESPN FC that Barca are concerned about elements of Dembele’s lifestyle.

He was omitted from the squad for Sunday’s defeat to Real Betis after missing training earlier in the week, but the club are reportedly reluctant to sell.

– Transfer Rater: James Rodriguez to Juve, Dembele to Liverpool


23.45 GMT: That will do it for tonight’s edition of the Transfer Talk LIVE blog. We hope you enjoyed it and remind you to check back in a few hours for more rumours, rumblings and reports from around the football world. Take care!

23.20 GMT: Liverpool spent £75 million on Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk last winter and the man himself has hinted that Liverpool could add another big-money Dutch defender in the near future.

Van Dijk recently had this to say about Liverpool transfer target Matthijs de Ligt, to Dutch paper De Telegraaf, “He is already very far, especially at that age. A good defender, good boy, calm, knows what he wants and hopefully he makes the right choice in his next step.”

When asked if the 19-year-old’s next step could be Anfield, Van Dijk responded: “He will be on the list, because they have enough scouts at the club.”

More “Dutch Delight” at Liverpool? Van Dijk might be Liverpool’s most important recruiter in making that happen.

22.47 GMT: With Claudio Ranieri taking over at Fulham earlier today, reports in Turkey suggest Fulham already have their eyes on a key defensive signing.

Turkish site Aspor writes that Liverpool’s Joel Matip is on Shad Khan and Co.’s radar in January, with the 27-year-old drawing interest from Turkish Super Lig clubs Fenerbahce and Besiktas as well.

The 27-year-old central defender has appeared in seven games, three starts, this season for the Reds and could be viewed as surplus to requirements by Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp.

Fulham, on the other hand, could use all the defensive help they get; the Cottagers having conceded a Premier League-worst 31 goals through 12 rounds.

22.12 GMT: Borussia Dortmund have had a world of success buying young players, many of whom were cast-off by bigger clubs, and selling them for a huge profit.

Jadon Sancho, who Dortmund acquired from Man City last summer, looks to be the best recent example. 

The latest youngster Dortmund is targeting is Arsenal’s Ben Cottrell.

The 17-year-old is starring at Under-18 level for the Gunners and has been in the Arsenal academy since the age of nine. 

According to the Sun, Dortmund and Marseille are two clubs willing to offer him first-team opportunities outside of the Premier League.

With English youngsters Sancho, Reece Oxford and Reiss Nelson all enjoying football in Germany, Cottrell could be next to take the plunge to the Bundesliga.

21.32 GMT: Sheffield United are reportedly in the market for a Premier League striker in January.

According to journalist Alan Biggs, Southampton’s Shane Long and Bournemouth’s Jermain Defoe are two targets the Blades are keeping close tabs on.

Both strikers are out of favour at their respective clubs but it remains to be seen whether Sheffield have the funds to lure either to drop down a division.

20.43 GMT: Roma to move for a Man United veteran?

The Sun claims that Roma are tracking Man United full-back Ashley Young, with Young’s contract due to expire at the end of the season.

United have offered the England man a new one-year deal but the player is in no rush to commit and is eligible to sign a pre-contract with an overseas club in January.

We’ll have to wait and see what is next for the former Aston Villa and Watford man.

20.03 GMT: MLS star Miguel Almiron is reportedly bound for England.

The 24-year-old agent, Daniel Campos, told radio station AM 1080 in Paraguay that he’s “in the process of working on England, there are two or three clubs interested in Almiron.

“There’s nothing concrete but certainly Almiron will play in the Premier League.”

Almiron has been a revelation in MLS, scoring 22 goals and assisting another 21 for Atlanta United in his two seasons with the club. The player has previously been linked with Arsenal and Newcastle and would not come cheap if he is indeed to leave MLS for Europe in January.

It sounds as if Almiron has his mind set on England, now it is just a matter of when?

18.42 GMT: Aaron Ramsey’s days at Arsenal are numbered, with the Welsh midfielder having being linked with several clubs both in England and abroad, after Arsenal pulled their contract extension offer.

After Italian outlet Corriere dello Sport hinted that Roma could swap young Czech striker Patrik Schick for Ramsey, Roma sporting director Monchi has ruled out an exit for Shick.

Could Roma pursue Ramsey separately? Possibly but this one looks to be dead in the water,

17.53 GMT: Jadon Sancho to Bayern Munich?

That was nearly the case according to Bayern sporting direction Hasan Salihamidzic. Salihamidzic told Bild “It is true that Bayern Munich wanted Jadon Sancho very well and therefore made him an offer that unfortunately was not accepted.”

The English starlet and then-Man City player wound up rejecting Bayern last summer in favour of signing with Borussia Dortmund for £8 million.

The 18-year-old looks to be a big miss for the six-time reigning Bundesliga champions, as Sancho has taken German football by storm, scoring five goals and delivering eight assists so far for leaders Dortmund.

17.05 GMT: Man City are set to put rumours that wonderkid Phil Foden could leave the club to bed.

Sources tell ESPN FC that the 18-year-old is on the “verge” of signing a new City contract that will keep the lifelong City supporter at the Etihad for the long-term.

One of England’s brightest talents, Foden has a major backer in manager Pep Guardiola, who has publicly praised him and tabbed him for great success in the future.

Recent rumours had linked Foden with Borussia Dortmund and PSG but it sounds as if the 2017 FIFA Under-17 Golden Ball winner is staying put. Foden has played 10 times this season for City, mostly as a substitute, and scored his first senior goal vs. Oxford United in the EFL Cup back in September.

16.00 GMT: West Ham’s move for Samir Nasri is in doubt.

Nasri had undergone a medical with the club on Monday. However, according to Sky Sports News, plans to sign Nasri were derailed by fitness concerns.

Nasri has not played for 18 months following a ban from the World Anti-Doping Agency. Manuel Pellegrini wanted to sign Nasri, a player who he had worked well with in the past at Manchester City. 

15.23 GMT: Porto face interest from multiple clubs for midfielder Hector Herrera.

The Porto midfielder could leave the club on a free this summer. Tottenham, Arsenal and Roma are all interested in signing the Mexican international.

However, it seems Inter Milan are leading the race to sign Hererra. TalkSport reports that Inter are negotiating a pre-contract agreement to secure Hererra before the summer.

14.30 GMT: Barcelona are considering a move to bring winger Dani Olmo back to the club. Olmo is a graduate of the famed La Masia academy, but left the club when he was 16 for Dinamo Zagreb.

Impressive performances at Zagreb earned Olmo his Spain under-21 debut in October, and Sport reports that Barcelona scouts will be watching the 20-year-old against Denmark.

13.50 GMT: Chelsea defender Gary Cahill could leave the club in January. The 32-year-old has reportedly been told he can leave the club in January if a suitable deal emerges. 

Cahill has only made one Premier League appearance this season and is second fiddle to Antonio Rudiger. Cahill’s contract is set to expire at the end of this season and, according to the Daily Express, Manchester United have emerged as potential suitors.

13.10 GMT: Arsenal are reported to have sent scouts to watch Atlanta defender Gianluca Mancini. Arsenal are looking to strengthen their defense after conceding 15 goals in 12 games.

The Sun reports scouts from both Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund have been watching Mancini this season.

12.30 GMT: Alexis Sanchez is reportedly seeking a move away from Manchester United.

According to AS, Sanchez has been offered up to Real Madrid and could leave as early as January.

Sanchez has struggled during his 11 months at United. He has scored three times in 21 games and has only started five this season.

11.50 GMT: Real Betis left wing-back Junior Firpo is being watched by Manchester City and Arsenal

TalkSport reports that Arsenal and Manchester City are among the clubs closely watching Firpo after impressive performances this season. 

Though Firpo signed a new long-term contract with Betis in summer, there was a £43.5m release clause within it which has not scared of either club.

11.15 GMT: Chelsea young prospect Ethan Ampadu could leave the club on loan this January.

Maurizio Sarri has spoken highly of the 18-year-old’s potential. He just signed a new five year deal at the club in September.

However, the club feel he will develop better by getting more match time at a Championship side for the time being. Both Aston Villa and Derby County have expressed their interests, according to Metro

10.40 GMT: West Ham forward Marco Arnautovic eyes move to “top team.”

Arnautovic has bagged five goals in 10 games for West Ham this season and is reportedly eyeing up a move to a Champions League side. The 29-year-old was linked to Manchester United last summer but they could not match West Ham’s £50m valuation.

His brother, Danijel Arnautovic, who represents him said Marco is “ready for the next step.”

09.20 GMT: Paris Saint-Germain’s Timothy Weah has enjoyed a break-out year — making his first-team debut and becoming a full U.S. international. 

But the 18-year-old is eager to develop his career and, in thew short-term at least, he is not sure that will happen at the Parc des Princes.

Weah told Sports Illustrated: “In January, I will be ready to go on loan & take my talents to another team to see what I can do for the next half of the season.”

08.25 GMT: Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak has been one of the bedrocks of their success under Diego Simeone, but the Slovenia international is reportedly unhappy at the Rojiblancos.

According to Marca, Oblak is unhappy that he is yet to receive a new contract offer from the club. Although his current deal runs until 2021, there will be plenty of top clubs interested if the 25-year-old says he wants out.

When he picked up an award an award as La Liga’s goalkeeper of the year on Tuesday, he said when asked about his future: “I don’t know, yes for the moment I am here.”

PAPER TALK (by Chris Borg): Mourinho and United set for barren January

If Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho thought he had endured a frustrating summer, January could be much worse, the Independent reports.

Mourinho wanted a new defender and continues to target one, with Inter Milan’s Milan Skriniar and Tottenham’s Toby Alderweireld high on the list.

But the Independent warns that he “is set for more frustration as United currently look unlikely to sign anyone in the midseason window.”

It adds that Mourinho “has been agitated by a failure to properly sit down with executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward to talk about targets.”

And although his job does not appear to be in immediate danger, some in the United hierarchy “are said to be mindful” that he could leave at the end of the season.

The Independent says there are questions over some Mourinho signings, with the disappointing performances produced by Fred so far leaving him viewed as “a purchase that reflects a wider problem.”

Spurs closing in on Cagliari star

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino wants new signings, and the Sun reports that the club “are set to splash £35 million on Cagliari’s Nicolo Barella.”

With Mousa Dembele having suffered an ankle injury against Wolves earlier this month, Spurs want to bring in Barella to boost their midfield.

The Sun says Pochettino is hopeful that their bid will be enough, but Liverpool and Juventus are also interested in a player who has been compared to Steven Gerrard.

It adds that “Spurs are sparing no expense to land their man, despite Italian champions Juve having dropped out of the race.”


— Real Betis were linked with Newcastle forward Ayoze Perez in the summer and remain interested as the January window looms, according to TalkSport.

Citing reports in Spain, it says Betis are prioritising additions to their attack and have put 25-year-old Perez top of their list.

— Both Chelsea and Manchester United had been keen on Napoli defender Elseid Hysaj, but both will be disappointed, according to the Mail.

It reports that Albania international Hysaj is in negotiations over a new deal and his agent is hopeful an agreement will soon be finalised.

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