The coronavirus pandemic made the summer transfer market unlike any before it, but there were still plenty of deals done, and you can check out the major ones here. The window might be closed across the top leagues in Europe, but here are the best rumours from around the globe.
TOP STORY: Chilwell success key to Chelsea plans for Rice
Blues boss Frank Lampard personally pushed for the Leicester City left-back’s £50 million move to Stamford Bridge this summer, for a price that some considered to be too high.
But Chilwell has so far performed well in shoring up Chelsea’s defensive issues. Therefore, Lampard’s position to convince Chelsea’s front office to go for Rice has been strengthened as Chilwell continues to impress and could see the board sanction another big-money move.
West Ham United star Rice, who was a youth player at Chelsea, has been regularly linked with a move away from London Stadium. While he clearly loves being the focal point of the Hammers’ starting XI, there’s always a chance he could leave if his £80m price tag is met.
11.37 GMT: Liverpool need a new defender and are looking at RB Leipzig for help.
With 22-year-old centre-back Dayot Upamecano previously linked, Bild reports that the club are now turning attention to Ibrahima Konate, who is a year younger and could cost less than €50m.
11.08 GMT: Manchester United are willing to spend in the January transfer window despite the ongoing uncertainty of the financial impact of the coronavirus, sources told ESPN’s Rob Dawson, with Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho and RB Leipzig defender Dayot Upamecano among the names on United’s wish list.
Executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has repeatedly urged caution, insisting he will have to manage the club’s resources “carefully” until the pandemic is over. However, sources told ESPN that he will back manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer with funds in the January transfer market if an opportunity to sign a long-term target presents itself.
10.27 GMT: Arsenal centre-back William Saliba is expected to leave the club on loan in January and would prefer a move back to his native France, sources told ESPN’s James Olley.
The 19-year-old is yet to make his debut for the Gunners, having been initially loaned back to Saint-Etienne for the 2019-20 campaign following a £27m transfer in July last year. Manager Mikel Arteta then opted not to register Saliba for either Premier League or Europa League matches this season, believing he needs a “transition year” before beginning his career in north London.
Sources told ESPN the prevailing view at Arsenal’s London Colney training base is that Saliba has a lot to improve upon before he is considered ready for the Premier League. Saint-Etienne almost took Saliba on loan for a second time, but the deal collapsed at the 11th hour.
10.03 GMT: Barcelona’s Lionel Messi is a free agent next summer.
Steve Nicol shares his thoughts on whether or not Lionel Messi will leave Barca during the January window.
09.19 GMT: Some big-name players will be available on a free transfer in 2021 if they don’t put pen to paper soon.
Here are 10 top players who can be picked up for nothing — and can start to negotiate with other clubs in January — with the help of Transfermarkt. Including:
– Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
– David Alaba (Bayern Munich)
– Sergio Aguero (Man City)
08.30 GMT: Chelsea are expected to listen to offers for Antonio Rudiger and Fikayo Tomori in January as head coach Frank Lampard seeks to reduce the number of centre-backs at the club, sources have told ESPN’s James Olley.
Both players almost left the club in the summer. Tottenham and West Ham United enquired about Rudiger while sources told ESPN on Sept. 8 that Everton were in advanced talks to sign Tomori on loan.
However, both deals collapsed as Rudiger, who was reluctant to play for another club in London, stayed despite a late offer from Roma.
Chelsea delayed allowing Tomori to leave and the player opted to stay and fight for his place amid a late loan bid from West Ham.
Steve Nicol believes Arsenal players have reverted to their mentality prior to Mikel Arteta’s arrival.
PAPER TALK (by Harry Kettle)
Liverpool, Arsenal seek Brighton star
The two English juggernauts could make their move as early as the January transfer window and, after a strong start to the campaign with the Seagulls, Brighton are aware of the challenge they face to keep him.
Bissouma, 24, has been at the Amex Stadium since signing from Lille in 2018 — and now, he’s ready to take a step up into European competition.
Toffees to take on Toney?
The Bees have been the target for many Premier League clubs over the course of the last few months, especially since they failed to gain promotion to the top flight.
While Toney wasn’t initially viewed as someone that was on the radar of Premier League sides, it does appear as if the Toffees have taken a real interest in him — and right in time for the Jaunary transfer window.
– Calciomercato is reporting that Paris Saint-Germain have joined AC Milan in trying to sign Ozan Kabak. The Schalke 04 centre-back has long been viewed as one of the most exciting defenders in European football, and while Milan were the frontrunners to sign him, the finances of PSG could now swing things in their favour.
– Newcastle United are one of many European clubs in the running to sign Fikayo Tomori on loan, Goal reports. With Tomori’s chances in the Chelsea first team having been reduced significantly in recent months, the Magpies believe they could offer him a route out — if only temporarily. Either way, though, it doesn’t appear as if his long-term future will be at Stamford Bridge.