The winter transfer window is closed, but now it’s time to look ahead to the summer! Here are the new rumours floating around Europe’s big leagues and beyond.
TOP STORY: Werner makes Liverpool his No. 1 choice
RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner has been linked with a switch across Germany to Bayern Munich for a few seasons, with the 24-year-old expected to make the well-trodden path to the country’s biggest club.
But on Thursday a report in Bild states that Werner, who has scored 27 goals in all competitions for RB Leipzig this season, will snub interest from Bayern and any other German club and wants to join a foreign club. The striker has been consistently linked with interest from Liverpool.
The Germany international is eager to play under Jurgen Klopp, putting Liverpool at the front of the queue of clubs hoping to sign him.
With Bayern Munich ready to re-open talks to sign Leroy Sane from Manchester City, they may not put up a fight.
Liverpool have been linked with Werner since January and have been busy in the past 12 months completing a range of contract extensions, but their transfer plans are on hold at the moment while the full effect of the coronavirus crisis is known.
22.05 BST: Santos’ Yeferson Soteldo is one of the top talents playing in South America and recently discussed his desire to move to Europe in the near future.
“I don’t like rumours, I have my whole family in Venezuela. I want to finish this stage at Santos by December, win the Copa Libertadores and whatever is possible and then take another step,” he told Gazeta Esportiva.
“I always dreamed of playing for Manchester United, the dream remains intact.
“There are many steps to get there, but I feel I can. I want to go to Europe, but not to go and come back.
“I want to go and pursue my career with greater success. I feel like I’m prepared and I have to wait for the right moment to do it.”
The diminutive winger, 22, has been linked with Everton and a move to the Premier League in the past.
21.29 BST: Football Insider understands that Bournemouth’s Ryan Fraser prefers a move to Tottenham Hotspur.
The 26-year-old winger has told friends that he is eager to join a Champions League calibre club, and Spurs are reportedly his preference, according to FI.
Fraser, whose contract on the South Coast expires this summer, has the seventh-most assists in the Premier League over the past four seasons with 26.
20.36 BST: West Ham are reportedly targetting Atletico Madrid and Mexico midfielder Hector Herrera once the transfer window reopens.
The Independent writes that West Ham remain interested in 30-year-old, who is out of contract at the end of the season. The report adds that Herrera rejected the Hammers this past January but after falling out of Atletico Madrid’s starting XI could now be open to a new challenge.
Herrera, who previously played six seasons in Portugal with Porto, has made 74 appearances to date for the Mexican national team.
19.53 BST: Ivan Rakitic to Villarreal?
After Rakitic’s recent comments about returning to football as soon as possible, Villarreal president Fernando Roig extended an off to the Croatia midfielder to join the ‘Yellow Submarine’ next season.
Roig told Cadena Cope’s El Partidazo programme: “I like him a lot as a footballer, if he wants to come to Villarreal, we are here.”
The 32-year-old Rakitic, who has seen his playing time decrease this season at Barcelona, is thought to favour a return to Sevilla, where his wife is from and where he played between 2011-14.
19.09 BST: Ajax’s Donny van de Beek figures to be one of the biggest names available in the transfer market but even with the likes of Man United and Real Madrid linked, Everton are not backing down.
Sport claims the Toffees remain interested in the 23-year-old attacker, who starred last season during Ajax’s run to the Champions League semi-finals. The Dutch side are reportedly hoping to get €60 million for Van de Beek, but even if Everton have the money, is their program ambitious enough for the player who is being linked with some of the world’s top clubs?
18.33 BST: According to Roma head coach Paulo Fonseca, Henrikh Mkhitaryan wants to stay at the Stadio Olimpico on a permanent basis.
“I want him to stay and he also wants to stay,” the Roma head coach told Russian TV show Great Football. “However, it should be clear that everything is now on hiatus, and we’ll have to talk to Arsenal.
“I want to continue working with him because he’s a great player and a great man.”
According to reports, Arsenal would be willing to sell the Armenian midfielder if their £22 million valuation is met this summer. Mkhitaryan has scored six goals and added three assists in 13 Serie A games with the Giallorossi since arriving on loan in September.
17.46 BST: Man United interested in young Serie A defender?
Corriere di Verona claims that the Red Devils are monitoring Hellas Verona centre-back Marash Kumbulla. The 20-year-old Albania international is reportedly valued at €25 million, although the Manchester Evening News understands that centre-back is not a priority for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Co at the moment.
17.02 BST: Fernandinho only just signed a contract extension back in January but the Brazilian is already thinking about his next deal.
The defensive midfielder/part-time centre-back is currently on the books at the Etihad through 2021 but recently told Sky Sports he wants to sign another deal with the club that would take him to the age of 37.
“If we have another conversation about another contract in the future, I would be happy. But if not, I would be happy as well because I know what I have done for this club and what this club has done for me, how they have helped me. This time has been a pleasure for me.
“Manchester City will always be in my heart. That’s for sure.”
Fernandinho, who turns 35 next week, has been at Man City since the summer of 2013 when he signed from Shakhtar Donetsk for £34 million.
16.19 BST: David Beckham’s Inter Miami may not have had an opportunity yet to prove what they can do in MLS, but do they need to make a banner signing like James Rodriguez? ESPN FC’s Taylor Twellman and Jon Champion weigh in.
15.42 BST: Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe has been arguably the hottest transfer topic since the global game went on pause due to the coronavirus crisis.
However, the France international appeared to put the speculation to bed — at least for now — by taking to social media to declare that he is missing playing with his Parisien teammates.
Mbappe, 21, who has been linked heavily with the likes of Real Madrid and Liverpool over the past few months, went for a throwback post of him in Champions League action with PSG and a cryptic “everybody is talking, but nobody knows” line.
Although Mbappe is wanted in Madrid, the financial impacts of the pandemic have raised doubts over a potential summer transfer.
Those doubts were increased last week when sources told ESPN that tying down Mbappe down to a new long-term deal is PSG’s main priority while the sport is in lockdown.
14.35 BST: Barcelona midfielder Arthur Melo has said he wants to stay at the club, but sources have told ESPN the La Liga champions are open to listening to offers for the midfielder or using him as part of a player-exchange deal.
Barca value Arthur, who signed from Gremio in 2018 for €30 million, at around €60m and he has been linked with both Tottenham and Juventus in recent weeks.
The coronavirus pandemic is likely to have long-lasting effects on the transfer market and sources have explained that, given those circumstances, only three players are untouchable at Barca: Lionel Messi, Frenkie de Jong and Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Arthur, 23, is among the players they would be willing to listen to offers for, but a source close to Arthur, whose contract runs until 2024, has also told ESPN that Barcelona have told the player they are happy for him to stay.
13.48 BST: Arsenal target Dayot Upamecano is set for another year at Bundesliga side RB Leipzig, according to Sky in Germany.
The 21-year-old centre-back has been one of the stars of Leipzig’s season and had been linked with Arsenal and Bayern Munich in recent months.
The French defender has a €60 million release clause in his contract which made him one of the most interesting transfer targets in the upcoming summer transfer window ahead of the coronavirus crisis.
However, according to Sky, Upamecano could now extend his contract for another year until 2022 instead. A new contract for one of the cornerstones of Leipzig’s Champions League run this season would also include a release clause for the summer of 2021.
13.00 BST: Borussia Dortmund want to sign Barcelona’s Ansu Fati if they sell Jadon Sancho this summer, Spanish news outlet Sport had reported.
Barca had not planned on selling Fati, who became the youngest player to score for the club in La Liga this season, but they do face a dilemma about how to manage the 17-year-old’s progression.
The Spain Under-21 international is deemed far too good for the Spanish club “B” team, who play in the third division in Spain. But there are doubts about how many minutes he will play for the first team. Barca are reportedly not closing any doors to the winger’s departure from the club.
Dortmund are a club with a proven track record in developing young players, but Barca would be loathe to sell Ansu. Instead, they would push for a loan, which may not satisfy the German club, whose model relies on nurturing talent and then selling them for a large profit.
12.13 BST: United States and Newcastle star DeAndre Yedlin could be facing an uncertain future as the club are in the process of a takeover bid. ESPN FC’s Taylor Twellman and Jon Champion outline why now is a very important time for the defender.
11.50 BST: Barcelona will only sell Philippe Coutinho if they receive an offer of €100 million for the former Liverpool playmaker, according to a report in Mundo Deportivo.
Coutinho is on loan at Bayern Munich but the German club are not expected to make the deal permanent in the summer.
A number of Premier League sides have been linked with a move for Coutinho, with Barca keen to to sell the Brazil international to raise funds to spend elsewhere. However, the Spanish club are looking to recoup a significant amount of the €160m they paid for Coutinho in 2018 to make him the club’s record signing.
Reportedly, ff no one comes up with €100m — which is unlikely given how clubs are suffering financially due to the coronavirus pandemic — Barca will give him another shot at Camp Nou.
Manager Quique Setien told Spanish news outlet Sport: “He’s a great player and maybe I have to have a chat with him. I am counting on him possibly being back at the start of preseason.”
10.21 BST: Following on from the story in Bild that RB Leipzig’s Timo Werner prefers a move to Liverpool over Bayern Munich, the same outlet also reports that, following a phone conversation between Leroy Sane and Bayern coach Hansi Flick, the Bavarians are now set to negotiate a fee for Sane.
While Manchester City are reportedly holding out for a fee in the €85m, Bayern want him for a cut price of around €70m, which would be in line with Bayern Munich CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge’s comments about a “rat race” taking place for the best players in the world.
“Footballers were always paid better than the normal employees. But what happened in the past ten years especially led to unhealthy developments,” Rummenigge said, adding that German football did not force that development. He stated: “It was more dramatic in other countries than here.”
09.48 BST: Argentine club Velez Sarsfield have denied that Chelsea are interested in defender Luis Abram, after reports claimed that the Premier League club were in advanced talks to sign the Peru international.
A key player at Velez, the 24-year-old has made 19 league appearances this season and is tied to the Argentinian outfit until June 2021.
“There’s nothing, there hasn’t been any communication with Chelsea in the past few days,” Velez executive Rodrigo Rapisada said. “With the coronavirus pandemic, everything is halted and we are only working remotely but we have not received anything for Luis Abram. Of course he is being monitored because he is a very good player but we’ve had no offers from Chelsea.”
09.11 BST: Real Madrid’s interest in Eduardo Camavinga has been left “up in the air” by the cancellation of the Ligue 1 season, Diario AS reports.
France’s Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced on Tuesday that no sporting events — even behind closed doors — would take place in the country until September.
That leaves the 17-year-old midfielder’s club Rennes third in the table, occupying the final Champions League qualifying spot.
Reports in France have suggested that Camavinga, who has been valued at €50m, could stay at the club to play Champions League football in 2020-21.
A final decision is yet to be made on what the Ligue 1 season’s cancellation means for promotion, relegation and European qualification.
08.30 BST: Could Tanguy Ndombele really move to Barcelona? Sky Sports News is reporting that the France international is unhappy at Tottenham Hotspur, following criticism from coach Jose Mourinho. He has struggled to live up to his club-record £54m transfer from Lyon. But could he really end up at the Camp Nou?
PAPER TALK (by Shaun Reynolds): Man United tempt Sancho with No. 7 shirt
— Kylian Mbappé (@KMbappe) April 29, 2020
The Daily Mirror is reporting that the Red Devils are reserving the fabled No. 7 shirt for Sancho in an effort to convince him to put pen to paper.
Borussia Dortmund are still desperate to keep the 20-year-old at the club and have offered Sancho an extended deal, but United are hoping the famous jersey — worn by players such as George Best, Bryan Robson and Cristiano Ronaldo — alongside a lucrative contract, can help persuade Sancho to swap Germany for a return to Manchester.
Sancho remains hot property and United aren’t the only club trying to buy him, with Chelsea also said to be interested.
However, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has made no secret of his desire to not only bring Sancho to Old Trafford, but build a new-look side around him.
Man City to swap Cancelo for Barca’s Semedo
City are looking to pay Barca a fee as well as include Cancelo in the deal, and Sport is suggesting that an agreement is likely to be reached in the next few weeks.
Barca have given Jorge Mendes, Semedo’s agent, the green light to negotiate the deal and while a fee of €45m has been mooted, the Blaugrana are open to a swap deal.
Talks with Semedo over a possible new deal have ended and so the club are keen to recoup as much money for him as possible, with his existing deal ending in 2022.
City believe Semedo will fit perfectly into the Premier League while the deal also enables them to offload Cancelo, who has struggled to find his feet in England,
More clubs join the queue for Partey
Thomas Partey is one of the most sought-after players in Europe right now and Spanish publication El Desmarque believe Bayern Munich have joined clubs such as Arsenal and Paris Saint-Germain in the hunt for the Atletico Madrid star’s signature.
Bayern are looking to replace Javi Martinez and have listed Partey as one player who could do the job. The German giants will have to get in line, however, as the Gunners and PSG have been chasing the Ghanaian for some time.
Partey is yet to commit his future to the Rojiblancos despite the best efforts of Atletico’s representatives, and PSG could certainly afford his €50m release clause, particularly if they sell Neymar to Barcelona.
That fee could test Arsenal’s limited funds, though they may be able to throw a player into the equation to help sweeten the deal, while selling stars such as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mesut Ozil could free up some much-needed spending money.
– Further to the Daily Mail’s claims that Chelsea are keen to sign Napoli‘s Dries Mertens, Calciomercato report that Inter Milan are not only in the hunt for his signature too, they’ve been laying the groundwork for a move for some time. Inter CEO Giuseppe Marotta has been in regular contact with Mertens, and it is believed the Nerazzurri will try and sign him regardless of whether or not Lautaro Martinez moves to Barcelona.
– Juventus and Barcelona are in advanced negotiations involving a swap deal between Arthur and Miralem Pjanic, reports Tuttosport. The move now sits with the individual players, with sources telling ESPN that Arthur is keen to stay at Camp Nou. However, the 23-year-old is well aware of the club’s plans to move him, and he is said to prefer a move to Juve rather than Inter Milan, who are also interested.