Transfer speculation is building as we approach the end of the 2019-20 season and while Chelsea have already wrapped up some impressive deals, they continue to be linked with some star names from across the continent.
Manchester City learned on Monday that their two-year ban from European competition had been overturned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport and you would expect that to have ramifications in the transfer window.
Latest transfer news and rumours…
Arteta: Arsenal remain attractive destination for transfer targets
Mikel Arteta believes that Arsenal remain a top destination for transfer targets despite their drop in performance over recent years.
The Gunners currently sit ninth in the Premier League following Sunday’s north London derby defeat to Tottenham and nine points adrift of the top four as they prepare for a fourth successive season outside of the Champions League.
However, despite that long absence, Arteta still views Arsenal – who could finish outside the European qualification places altogether for the first time since before Arsene Wenger’s arrival in 1995 – as an elite European club.
When asked if there would come a point when he’d stop viewing Arsenal as a Champions League club, Arteta replied: “While I am sitting in this chair I’m not, because that’s the only thing that I think of this football club.”
On remaining an attractive destination to players, he added: “We’ve an incredible history, an incredible structure, in a beautiful city and a style of play that attracts players.
“And I’m telling you now because when I am closer to the market now when I speak to people, a lot of players want to play for Arsenal.
“What I need to do first of all is myself do my work as good as possible, improve this team and the players individually as much as possible and get the maximum out of that.
“And then what we need to do at the end of the season is, OK, see the direction we want to take, agree on the ambition of the football club, realise where we are.
“The demands are going to be huge – it doesn’t matter what we do, that’s never going to be change because it’s linked to our history and our success – and [we need to] move from there.”
What next for Alaba?
The future of Bayern Munich’s David Alaba remains uncertain with Bild reporting that the Bundesliga club have reached an impasse with their contract negotiations.
The Austrian international has been linked with a move to Manchester City, which would seed him reunited with Pep Guardiola.
MAN UTD NEWS
Lingard on list of player heading for Man United exit
Jesse Lingard is one of six players who could leave Manchester United this summer, according to the Telegraph.
Alexis Sanchez, Chris Smalling, Marcos Rojo, Phil Jones, Diogo Dalot and Lingard have all been made available by Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
MAN CITY NEWS
City eye Jimenez
Manchester City are interested in signing Wolves striker Raul Jimenez.
ESPN Mexico reports that City could move for the striker this summer with the 29-year-old desperate to play Champions League football.
Wolves can still mathematically qualify for the competition, but another season in the Europa League looks more realistic.
ICYMI: Hojbjerg wants Spurs move
Southampton midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg wants to join Tottenham this summer and Spurs could use Kyle Walker-Peters in a deal for the Dane.
Hojbjerg, 24, was stripped of the captaincy at St. Mary’s after failing to agree an extension to his contract, which runs for another year, and he has told Saints he would like to join a bigger club.
Spurs are leading the chase for the former Bayern Munich player, who is also a target for Ajax, and are confident of forcing down Southampton’s current £35million asking price, in part by using Walker-Peters as a makeweight.
MAN CITY NEWS
Guardiola given £150m to spend
Following the Court of Arbitration for Sport’s decision to overturn the two-year Champions League ban handed to Manchester City by Uefa for alleged FFP breaches, Pep Guardiola will handed substantial funds to bolster his squad this summer.
The Guardian reports that Pep Guardiola will have around £150million to spend as the look to close the gap on Liverpool and mount another Champions League challenge.
Mourinho: Ndombele is part of my plans at Tottenham
Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho insists that Tanguy Ndombele is part of his plans despite limited game time since the resumption of the Premier League season.
The club-record signing has played just 64 minutes of football in total since the Premier League resumed last month and is a major doubt for Wednesday with an injury picked up in training.
Mourinho has previously criticised Ndombele’s fitness and attitude, but insists the Barcelona target remains part of his plans going forward.
“Every player is part of my plans,” he said. “Everyone. I don’t give up on players. No player has a privilege. Every player is for me the same.
“No problem at all. Every player is part of my plans.”
Standard Sport understands that Barcelona have made an approach for Ndombele, as well as teenage left back Ryan Sessegnon, but Tottenham have no interest in allowing either player to leave.
MAN UTD NEWS
Sancho could join Man Utd for £85m
Manchester United will ultimately agree a fee of around £85m for Jadon Sancho, according to Bleacher Report.
United won’t want to break their £89million transfer record this term, but the report claims Dortmund will use the £80million fee paid for Harry Maguire as leverage to get the biggest fee possible.
The Bleacher Report article says: “Sancho, with his goals and assists, has an added premium—so perhaps we are looking at around £85 million, which converts to approximately €95 million, as the sort of figure that might make this deal possible.”
Partey to snub Arsenal
Some very bad news regarding Arsenal’s pursuit of Thomas Partey is now coming from the player’s native Ghana.
The Atletico Madrid midfielder is thought to be a target for the Gunners this summer, with a £43m buyout clause written into his current contract.
However, according to GhanaSoccernet.com, Partey is now on the verge of signing an extension with the LaLiga giants having decided to stay put following a breakthrough in negotiations.
Such an agreement – which is expected to be be completed in the coming days – would reportedly see the 27-year-old more than double his £65,000-a-week salary at the Wanda Metropolitano.
His release clause will also supposedly be increased to around £87.2m.
Will Mikel Arteta now have to focus his transfer attentions elsewhere?
Boost for Chelsea in Havertz pursuit
Some potentially good news for Chelsea now in their pursuit of Kai Havertz.
The Blues are targeting the Bayer Leverkusen playmaker and Leicester left-back Ben Chilwell this summer as they look to bolster their squad for a title challenge following deals for Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner.
While Chelsea remain third in the Premier League this term, they are just a point ahead of Leicester and Manchester United as the battle for Champions League qualification heats up following the overturning of Manchester City’s two-year Uefa ban on Monday.
A failure to secure a place in Europe’s elite club competition would normally be seen as a critical blow in the race to sign a coveted young talent such as Havertz, though the BBC now claim that is NOT thought to be a deal-breaker and that the German international would consider a transfer to a team that missed out.
The report adds that a long-term plan is just as crucial for Havertz, who only turned 21 last month.
MAN CITY NEWS
Guardiola on City investment after CAS ruling
Manchester City are expected to spend considerably this summer despite the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, with Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly and Leicester left-back Ben Chilwell high on their list of targets.
A relaxing of Financial Fair Play rules and City’s successful Champions League appeal will work in their favour, though Pep Guardiola has spoke of missing out on key targets to rivals United despite their huge spending power.
“We have a lot of money, but we wanted Alexis Sanchez and we could not afford it,” he said. “We wanted Harry Maguire and we could not afford it. We could not pay like United paid.
“So we have money, but the other clubs have money too. We spend in the last decade more than it was in the past.
“United with Sir Alex Ferguson spent a lot of money to be there, all the clubs, if you want to be on top, all the clubs, if you don’t it’s more difficult. Because being a good manager like I am, I’m not good enough without good players, no way.
“I am humble enough to accept that without my players I am nothing, zero. That’s why I need my players, and for that I need clubs who are financially strong – like a lot of clubs – to do it.
“United, Arsenal in periods before they win the leagues invest more money than the other ones. When Chelsea start to win Premier Leagues, they invest more money than the other ones.
“I’m a good manager, but I don’t win titles if I don’t have good players and good players are expensive, but all the clubs spend a lot of money. Barcelona spend a lot of money, [Real] Madrid spend a lot of money, English teams spend a lot of money.
“But if we build the club in terms of the last decade to compete with the elite of the Premier League or Champions League, we need to invest.”
In addition to their pursuit of Alfie Devine, the report adds Spurs remain hopeful of luring Joe Gelhardt and Jensen Weir, both 18, to north London for a cut-price fee.
Gelhardt has been linked with Brighton and Leicester City but The Daily Mail say Tottenham are hoping to steal in ahead of their Premier League rivals to sign the youngsters.
Klopp: If Liverpool have money, we will spend
Jurgen Klopp has reiterated the difficulties of Liverpool operating in a post-Covid 19 transfer market, but says the club will spend money if it is available.
The overturning of Manchester City’s Champions League ban will surely see Pep Guardiola strengthen his squad significantly this summer, though the Reds are unlikely to be in a position to match that as they seek to successfully defend their first league title for 30 years.
“Strengthening the squad, you talk about like it is something I just have to ask for and somebody opens the well and away we go,” Klopp said.
“To strengthen the squad you need money and these are uncertain times. Obviously, uncertain times means for some clubs we cannot do what we would do in non-uncertain times.
“Ask me can we develop the squad and it is probably possible, but only with real money.
“We have talents ourselves, big talents, and players who can make big steps in our squad. But buying now? Just go out and there and name whoever you want, whatever the player is, go for it? That is really difficult. It was always difficult.
“We did not invest a lot in the squad last year and that was before Covid. We do not know when supporters will be back in the stadium.
“Whoever knows, tell me and then we can plan with that. That is how the club has been led since before I was here.
“If we have money, we will spend. If we do not know if we will have money, we probably will not spend that much. That is how it is.”
Tottenham have entered talks with Wigan Athletic over the signing of teenage starlet Alfie Devine, The Daily Mail report.
The 15-year-old, released by Liverpool’s academy, has starred in the Latics’ FA Youth Cup run and has already featured for their Under-23 side.
Wigan recently entered administration due to financial difficulties and will be forced to sell players to raise funds, with a deal worth £800,000 on the table from Spurs.
MAN UTD NEWS
Man United looking to offload SIX players
Manchester United hope to offload no fewer than six players this summer.
According to The Telegraph, the Red Devils will listen to offers for Alexis Sanchez, Chris Smalling, Marcos Rojo, Phil Jones, Jesse Lingard and Diogo Dalot in a bid to raise money for new signings.
Borussia Dortmund and England forward Jadon Sancho remains Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s top transfer target, while the club are also in pursuit of Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish.
The Telegraph add that United would also like to add another striker and centre-back if possible.
WEST HAM NEWS
West Ham may struggle to keep Grady Diangana out of the clutches of interested parties this summer, according to The Sun.
The 22-year-old has spent the campaign on loan at promotion-chasers West Brom and has caught the eye with some dazzling displays.
Ajax and Celtic have also taken notice of the England Under-21 international, who has a contract with the Hammers until 2025, and West Ham may demand a sizeable fee if they are to let him leave permanently.
Arteta not expecting forced player sales
More from Mikel Arteta now, with the Arsenal boss not expecting to be forced into selling players this summer.
“I’m not expecting that. I’m not saying it’s not a possibility, I don’t know, in football everything is possible,” he said.
On the risk of not investing with Arsenal outside the Champions League, he added: “If you are not in the Champions League and you say: ‘OK, I don’t invest because I don’t have the financial ability to do it’, but the other clubs invest, then the gap becomes bigger.
“If I do want to invest and risk, and then I don’t reach it, what happens?
“So at some stage you have to make a decision, whether I want to aim to make that gap closer and go for it, or I stay where I am.”
Kudus to snub Tottenham and Liverpool interest
Rumoured Tottenham and Liverpool target Mohammed Kudus wants to join Ajax, reports suggest.
According to Ekstra Bladet and HITC, the teenage forward is set to move to Amsterdam after an impressive campaign with Nordsjaelland in Denmark.
Everton and Borussia Monchengladbach had also been linked with Kudus, who has scored 12 goals this season and attracted the attention of revered Ajax scout John Steen Olsen.
Barcelona still want Sessegnon; Ndombele chase cools
Barcelona’s interest in Tanguy Ndombele has now cooled, but the LaLiga giants reportedly remain keen on a deal for Tottenham team-mate Ryan Sessegnon.
That is according to Sky Sports, who say that Barca have been tracking former Fulham prodigy Sessegnon for more than two years and have made their interest known during discussions over potential summer swap deals.
Sky add that the Blaugrana want another left-back as they also chase a new striker in Inter Milan’s Lautaro Martinez, with Sessegnon said to be keen on finishing the season strongly before addressing his future.
However, Barcelona are unlikely to carry on their pursuit of Tottenham’s club-record signing Ndombele after acquiring Miralem Pjanic in a part-exchange deal with Juventus that will see Arthur Melo move in the opposite direction.
And here’s another shot of Hakim Ziyech from Chelsea’s Twitter account…
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When does the 2020 summer transfer window open?
The Premier League’s chief executive, Richard Masters, has confirmed that the window is not set to open until the end of the season.
The campaign is currently scheduled to finish on Sunday July 26th, though the FA Cup Final will be held on August 1.
Therefore, August 2 seems a likely date for the window to open, though Masters admitted there is not yet a plan for how long it would go on for – especially with no dates yet confirmed for the 2020/21 season.
A summer transfer window usually lasts at least 12 weeks. Recent reports suggest Fifa will allow leagues to open their windows up to four weeks before the culmination of the season.
Players can be officially registered with their new clubs when the Fifa international window opens on July 1 – such as Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner with Chelsea – though Fifa guidelines suggest players joining in July will not be able to play for their new clubs during the current 2019-20 season.
From January 1 onwards, Premier League players with six months left on their contract have been able to negotiate and agree pre-contract deals with foreign clubs.
Some players have signed short-term deals with their clubs to finish the current season, but there is no obligation for players to do so. However, they will not be able to play for a new team this season even if they become a free agent due to Fifa regulations on registrations.