The 2022 January transfer window is closed, but there’s still plenty of gossip swirling about who’s moving where. Transfer Talk brings you all the latest buzz on rumours, comings and goings and, of course, done deals!
TOP STORY: Barca, Real Madrid aiming to sign Kounde ahead of Chelsea
Kounde, 23, has been attracting plenty of interest in recent months, with a move to Chelsea during the summer transfer window breaking down over the Spanish club’s desire for a larger fee.
Despite Chelsea remaining in the race to get the deal over the line, any move will now be more difficult to achieve with the two biggest LaLiga clubs actively chasing the France international.
Sevilla are reported to be looking for a fee in the region of €70 million to let Kounde, who has been a key part of their side this season in his 28 appearances, depart.
The report adds that the three teams at the front of the queue have an equal chance of acquiring him, with Bayern Munich yet to launch an expected approach.
09.30 GMT: Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich suddenly handed over the “stewardship and care” of the Premier League club to its charitable foundation trustees on Saturday.
The move came after a member of the British Parliament called for the Russian billionaire to hand over the club in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Abramovich, who has owned Chelsea since 2003, made no mention of the war in Ukraine in his statement and, significantly, is not relinquishing ownership of the club and can still provide funds, presuming he is not sanctioned by the U.K. government. Sources have told ESPN that Abramovich has no intention of calling in his loans to the club.
“During my nearly 20-year ownership of Chelsea FC, I have always viewed my role as a custodian of the club, whose job it is ensuring that we are as successful as we can be today, as well as build for the future, while also playing a positive role in our communities,” he said.
“I have always taken decisions with the Club’s best interest at heart. I remain committed to these values. That is why I am today giving trustees of Chelsea’s charitable Foundation the stewardship and care of Chelsea FC.
“I believe that currently they are in the best position to look after the interests of the club, players, staff, and fans.”
09.00 GMT: Manchester United remain convinced they can attract their top targets to Old Trafford in the summer even if they miss out on a place in the Premier League top four, sources have told ESPN.
Sources said that United are prepared to spend in the summer regardless of whether they qualify for the Champions League.
Targets like West Ham’s Declan Rice and Tottenham’s Harry Kane have made it clear they want to play in Europe’s top club competition but United believe they are still in a position to pull off marquee signings even if they miss out on a place in the top four this season.
PAPER GOSSIP (by Adam Brown)
– Liverpool are keen to sign Darwin Nunez, reports Football Insider. The 22-year-old forward was recently linked with West Ham, though Benfica turned down a £40m bid for his services in January. The latest suggests that he is open to making the switch to play for Jurgen Klopp’s side, with the Reds ready to make an official approach in the summer. It is reported that scouts were sent to watch Nunez during the Champions League knockout clash with Ajax Amsterdam.
– West Ham United, Brighton & Hove Albion and Atalanta are all monitoring the situation of Flamengo ace Gabriel “Gabigol” Barbosa, reveals Ekrem Konur. The three clubs were in the market for a No. 9 during the January transfer window, but after failing to find a solution, they are now looking towards the 25-year-old striker, who contributed 17 goals in 18 games in Brazil‘s Serie A last season.
– Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers is keen to secure a deal for Chelsea star Levi Colwill, who has been impressing during his time on loan at Huddersfield Town. That’s according to the Mirror, though the report also says that Thomas Tuchel may already have plans to give the 19-year-old defender a chance to prove himself when he returns from his loan spell in the Championship. He has made 21 league appearances for the Terriers this season.
– Torino will activate the clause in Josip Brekalo‘s loan deal from Wolfsburg to make his move permanent, according to Calciomercato. The 23-year-old winger has six goals in 17 starts so far this season in Serie A. That form has seen Il Toro’s hierarchy make their decision quickly over whether to sign him on a permanent basis.
– Tottenham Hotspur are ready to join Newcastle United in the race for Lille‘s Sven Botman, reports the Star. With Spurs keen to keep manager Antonio Conte in north London, chairman Daniel Levy is looking to back his man over the summer as he continues his project. A deal will reportedly cost in the region of £30m for 22-year-old centre-back Botman, though there is a competition for his signature, with AC Milan also recently linked.
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