The January transfer window is starting to hot up with Manchester United unable to resist dipping in as they edge towards a move that could be worth up to £60m for Bruno Fernandes, yet Arsenal, too, promise to be busy in the remaining days, though they will need to be more creative with funds restricted for now. Manchester City’s John Stones could follow Mikel Arteta to the Emirates if reports are to be believed, while Liverpoolhave proven how best to approach the month, snapping upTakumi Minaminofrom RB Salzburg to further boost their hopes of a treble this term.
While United remain active in the market for new players, perhaps their biggest opportunity remains off the pitch with Mauricio Pochettino currently available. Fresh from their transfer ban being lifted, Chelseaadded youngster Bryan Fiabema, but more significant signings are on the horizon. Manchester United and Arsenal have been linked with Paris Saint-Germain’s Edinson Cavani, who will be available for free this summer, but Atletico Madrid could move first for the Uruguayan, with Diego Simeone eager to add him this month to boost their Champions League campaign given their limited options up top right now. Chelsea have highlighted their defence as an area to upgrade, leading to rumours of moves for Issa Diop of West Ham and their former centre-back Nathan Ake at Bournemouth, with £40m the likely fee for both players.
Tottenham Hotspur could be ambitious with Jose Mourinho eager to overhaul his squad and now desperate to strengthen in the market due to Harry Kane’s long-term injury. Barcelona centre-back Samuel Umtiti could be targeted, but with Ernesto Valverde’s departure and the arrival of Quique Setien, Spurs may have to look elsewhere, while one of the stars of last season Matthijs de Ligt has failed to settle at Juventus and has been linked with a loan move back to Ajax, but the season-ending injury to Merih Demiral should end any possibility of that for now.
Manchester United are tracking Atletico Madrid’s Marcos Llorente.
After just three starts this season in La Liga, United could be a convenient solution for all, with Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay out injured.
Charlie Mulgrew has returned to Blackburn after his loan to Wigan was terminated prematurely at his own request.
Tottenham Hotspur’s 2-1 victory overMiddlesbroughin theFA Cupmay not have been perfect —one only had to watch Davinson Sánchez’s perversely entertaining disasterclass to know that— but it was yet another night on which their youngest players shone.
Such was the suspicion when José Mourinho namedJaphet Tangangain his starting XI to faceLiverpoollast weekend that many immediately concluded that the 20-year-old was little more than an unsubtle message to Daniel Levy to buy him a new defender: some kind of passive-aggressive email to the boss made flesh. Yet he has now been the club’s best player in successive matches.
If Tangangawas solid on Saturdayhe was superb in the dark and drizzle on Tuesday night: positionally intelligent, defensively resolute and a surprisingly effective attacking outlet to boot. His two performances have been all the more impressive considering the abject state of the Tottenham defence he has been parachuted into. Against Liverpool, he had to be perpetually aware of Serge Aurier’s breezy strolls forward. Against Middlesbrough, he meanwhile had to compensate for a Sánchez performance so bad it became difficult not to be deafened by an internal rendition of the Yakety Sax every time the ball went anywhere near him.
Napoli have signed Stanislav Lobotka from Celta Vigo for €20m.
The 25-year-old has signed a four-and-a-half year contract.
Celta can earn a further €4m in add-ons. The Slovakian follows in the footsteps of compatriot Marek Hamsik to play in Naples.
The 20-year-old has burst on to the scene at Spurs over the past few days as he followed an impressive Premier League debut against Liverpool on Saturday with a man-of-the-match performance in Tuesday’s 2-1FA Cupreplay win over Middlesbrough.
Prior to last weekend, his only senior appearance for the club where he has come through the ranks was in the Carabao Cup at Colchester in September.
Bristol City have released Spanish striker Rodri following the conclusion of a short-term deal.
The 29-year-old, who had previously played for Sevilla, Zaragoza and Granada – as well as Sheffield Wednesday on loan in the 2012-13 season – joined the Robins in October.
Rodri made six appearances in the Sky Bet Championship under boss Lee Johnson, including one start, without finding the net, with the last of those as a substitute in a 4-0 home defeat to Brentford on New Year’s Day.
Chicharito joined Sevilla last summer for £6.7m, but now looks set to move on after scoring just once in nine La Liga appearances, though he has two more in four Europa League games.
“I want to be as open as I can to any opportunity, and then when I need to decide something in the future, those decisions, I will think about them and try to get the best one. MLS is a league that is improving,” Hernandez said last November when asked about moving to MLS.
PSG will rival Inter for the signature of Christian Eriksen.
The Dane seems set to push for a move this month, rather than wait until the summer when he will become a free agent.
Though it remains to be seen whether PSG have left it too late to lure the 27-year-old away from the San Siro.
Rivaldo urges Barcelona to buy after Suarez injury
Rivaldo has urged Barcelona to buy this month after Luis Suarez’s serious injury.
Barcelona replaced Ernesto Valverde with Quique Setien this week.
When you know that one of your best players will be away for at least four months it’s important to compensate for that absence with another quality attacker.
Fortunately for Barça, we have a transfer window opened and I believe the club should sign a good substitute, as there are plenty of titles to fight for this season.
Luis Suárez has been in sensational form in the last few months taking part in most of Barça’s goals. He has also been a prolific scorer since his arrival to Barcelona, so it won’t be easy to replace him, but Barcelona should at least try.
Jan Vertonghen has hinted that his desire is to stay at Spurs as his contract winds down.
The Spurs defender, 32, is a free agent this summer, and was quizzed on his future after the FA Cup replay win over Middlesbrough.
I feel like everything I say will affect it in one way or the other, so I prefer not to answer.
I’m a happy man. I love the guys. Life is good in London and at this great club. That’s all I want to say.
Gedson opens up on dream Spurs move
“I’m very happy to be here today – I make my dream a reality,” Gedson said. “For me, it’s one big dream to come to this big Club. I will try to give my best for the Club every day, in every training session and in every game and I will try to help the team wherever I can, working hard every day for this shirt.
“I have no words to say about the stadium. I’ve never seen anything like this – it’s unbelievable!
“The training ground is fantastic too, the people that I’ve met today are fantastic. I know the squad because I’ve watched some games, I have some references like Moussa Sissoko, I know a little bit about Eric Dier because he played in Portugal and I know the coach (Jose Mourinho) because he’s a big coach – I know about the staff (Assistant Head Coach Joao Sacramento and Goalkeeper Coach Nuno Santos) a little bit as well because one of my friends last year played at (their former club) Lille, so he spoke with me a little bit about the staff.
“This is a fantastic challenge that I have accepted and I have to win my challenge. I want to make good things – let’s see!”
Wolves target Hee-Chan Hwang will stay at Red Bull Salzburg this month.
After selling Takumi Minamino and Erling Haaland this month, the Austrians are keen to keep hold of the Korean forward.
“We won’t let him go for 40million euros (£34m) either. We won’t be negotiating with any club.”
West Ham sign Randolph
Darren Randolph has rejoined West Ham from Middlesbrough.
The 32-year-old goalkeeper has signed a three-and-a-half-year contract for an undisclosed fee.
“I’m delighted to be back at West Ham United. I had two great years at the Club previously and still have a lot of friends here, so I had no hesitation in coming back,” Randolph said. “West Ham is a massive club, with fantastic supporters and an excellent squad of players.
“It’s a great challenge for me and I am really looking forward to working with the goalkeepers here and helping the team in any way I can.
“I’d like to thank everyone at Middlesbrough – the management, staff, players and fans – for their support. I had a great time there and wish them all the very best for the rest of the season.
“This opportunity was simply too good to turn down, though. It’s a great feeling to be back in the Premier League with such a fantastic club, and I can’t wait to get started.”
Everton chief Marcel Brands admits the club’s pursuit of Wilfried Zaha last summer was “not realistic”.
Look at last summer, from the start there was a lot of rumours and news that we would like to take Zaha.
And if you see our numbers then you know it is not realistic for Everton to buy a player for £60m, £70m, £80m.
So that kind of expectation is sometimes a different kind of expectation for fans and it is not realistic and we have to manage that.
Of course, we want to get the best players but we have to be realistic if you see our numbers.
Chelsea have dropped their interest in Nathan Ake and Callum Wilson.
The Bournemouth duo have been on the Blues’ radar recently.
But Frank Lampard’s side will look elsewhere now, according to Sky Sports.
Chelsea have a £40m buy-back option for Ake, but appear set to resist.
Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has claimed Moussa Dembele will not be going anywhere this month.
Chelsea and Manchester United have been linked with the former Celtic striker.
But Aulas maintains he will stay at OL for now.
“We have not changed our minds,” Aulas toldRMC. “We already made this issue clear in August. Moussa is an excellent player. A player who we need.
“We are taking explicit measures in our recruitment to not bring someone in who will compete for his position. It is not a question of money. Moussa will be with us.”
Barcelona are closing in on the signing of Matheus Fernandes from Palmeiras.
The Brazilian midfielder could join the La Liga champions for €7m plus €4m in add-ons.
Chelsea are set to sell Olivier Giroud to Inter Milan for €4.5m.
Sky Italia report an agreement is in place, with the Blues able to pick up an extra €2m in bonuses.
Terms between the club and player have been agreed, with a two-and-a-half-year contract worth €4m per year sorted.
Liverpool are in for Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz.
Mundo Deportivo cite reports in Germany, who claim the Reds will offer €125m (£107m) for the German midfielder.
Havertz has been linked previously with Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Manchester United.
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United and Chelsea have both been linked with Dinamo and Spain star Dani Olmo. There could also be some big moves across Europe. Real Madrid have been linked with a £68m move for Timo Werner, as well as Flamengo wonder kid Reinier, while Arsenal have turned their eyes to RB Leipzig’s Dayot Upamecano as a long-term target.