The January transfer window may be closed around Europe, but teams are looking ahead to the summer and there’s plenty of gossip swirling around. Transfer Talk brings you all the latest buzz on rumours, comings, goings and, of course, done deals!
TOP STORY: Mac Allister eyed by Liverpool, Arsenal, Man Utd
Multiple Premier League clubs are keen to land Brighton & Hove Albion midfielder Alexis Mac Allister, according to Cesar Luis Merlo.
Liverpool, Arsenal and Manchester United are all reported to be keeping close tabs on the 24-year-old, with two of those having already made contact with the Seagulls over a potential move.
It is reported that clubs are looking to sign him this summer, while the player’s father and representatives are already in England monitoring the situation closely.
Mac Allister, a World Cup winner with Argentina last December, has been linked with a move away from the Amex Stadium since the January transfer window, and it looks as though interest is set to resurface when the transfer window opens in July.
He has remained a key player for Roberto De Zerbi’s side this season, having scored eight goals in 24 league appearances.
– Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, more (U.S.)
13.27 BST: Chelsea have appointed Frank Lampard as interim head coach until the end of the season following Sunday’s dismissal of Graham Potter, the club announced on Thursday.
Lampard took Chelsea training on Thursday morning ahead of Saturday’s Premier League game at Wolverhampton Wanderers. He has returned to the club he managed until 2021 while the search for a long-term appointment continues with negotiations ongoing with a number of candidates to replace Potter.
Chelsea’s all-time leading goal scorer with 211, Lampard has been out of work since leaving Everton in January. He previously took charge at Chelsea in June 2019 and led them to fourth in the Premier League and the FA Cup final where they were beaten by Arsenal. He was sacked the following season and replaced by Thomas Tuchel.
12.45 BST: The Saudi Arabia national team have offered Jose Mourinho €60m a year over two seasons to manage them, says Corriere dello Sport.
Mourinho, 60, has a contract at AS Roma which runs until 2024 but could opt to leave for a big payday.
The Portuguese, who has been in charge of FC Porto, Chelsea (twice), Real Madrid, Man United, Tottenham and Inter Milan during a stellar career, would easily become the highest-paid manager in the world.
11.50 BST: Is Frank Lampard the man to keep Chelsea afloat for now?
Why Frank Lampard’s interim return might be just what Chelsea needs
Don Hutchison says Frank Lampard can bring a bit of stability and guidance to a struggling Chelsea squad.
11.07 BST: Chelsea are leading the race to sign Valencia goalkeeper Giorgi Mamardashvili, according to Cope.
Mamardashvili, 22, signed a new deal with Los Che until June 2027 in November and has a €100m release clause. The Georgia international has attracted the attention of top Premier League clubs after making 27 league appearances for Valencia this season.
Tottenham and Manchester United have reportedly monitored Mamardashvili closely in recent months but it’s Chelsea that have taken a step forward.
The Blues have already met with Mamardashvili’s agents in London to discuss the player’s potential move to Stamford Bridge. In 17th place in LaLiga, Valencia are fighting to avoid relegation this season and will have to transfer players if they get demoted.
10.23 BST: Kosovo defender Amir Rrahmani is on the verge of signing a new deal with Napoli, Sky Italia reports.
Rrahmani, 29, has been a key player for the Serie A leaders this season, making 26 appearances across all competitions. Under contract with Napoli until June 2024, he has been offered a three-year contract extension, with an option for a further year.
Napoli already extended the contract of another pillar in their defence, Juan Jesus, earlier this month. The Brazilian defender signed a contract until June 2025 earlier this month.
10.00 BST: Transfer speculation is already mounting over the future of several €100m-plus players this summer — among them Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham, Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane and Napoli forward Victor Osimhen — but Europe’s elite clubs are also looking at signing some emerging talents with exciting potential who would be available for a less hefty fee.
Tor Kristian-Karlsen looks at a few young stars who are attracting top-level interest months before the transfer window reopens. Including:
– Randal Kolo Muani
– Mateo Retegui
– Gabri Veiga
09.13 BST: Tottenham are interested in Atletico Madrid midfielder Rodrigo De Paul, says InterLive.
De Paul, 28, hasn’t settled in Madrid and could move on but the Argentina international is also being tracked by Liverpool and Everton.
The midfielder is known to be best friends with Lionel Messi and could cost around €30m to sign.
08.36 BST: Lionel Messi is considering a move to Saudi Arabia that would see him join Al Hilal, the city rivals of Cristiano Ronaldo‘s Al Nassr, when his Paris Saint-Germain contract expires this summer, a source familiar with the negotiations told ESPN.
Having opened talks with Messi and his advisers late last year, senior figures in the bid to take him to the Middle Eastern nation had initially believed they had no more than an outside chance of persuading the former Barcelona forward to follow Ronaldo to Riyadh.
However, a source told ESPN there is now an increasing likelihood of Messi, 35, who fronts the Visit Saudi tourism campaign, moving to the Saudi Pro League, putting the probability as high as “50-50” following talks with the player’s camp in Saudi Arabia last month.
A separate source told ESPN that Messi received an offer from Saudi Arabia last week.
ESPN reported Tuesday that Messi is unlikely to reach an agreement to extend his contract at PSG, which runs out at the end of the season. He signed a two-year deal on his arrival from Barcelona in 2021.
08.00 BST: Chelsea are in talks with Frank Lampard to become the club’s interim head coach as they continue to search for a permanent successor to Graham Potter, sources have told ESPN.
The 44-year-old former Blues player has emerged as a potential short-term solution to take charge until the end of the season as negotiations remain ongoing with a number of candidates over the Stamford Bridge vacancy.
Potter was sacked Sunday after less than seven months in charge and sources have told ESPN that the club initially identified five to seven individuals who could replace him.
The club have made contact with Julian Nagelsmann, sacked last month by Bayern Munich, and Luis Enrique, who flew to London on Wednesday for what sources describe as positive talks over the position.
Former Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino was also thought to be under consideration, but as of Tuesday no contact had been made with the 51-year-old.
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PAPER GOSSIP (by Adam Brown)
– Midfielder Marcel Sabitzer is interested in staying at Manchester United on a permanent basis, reveals Sky Sports Deutschland’s Florian Plettenberg. A return to Bayern Munich is said to be unlikely for the 29-year-old Austria international, who is also attracting other potential suitors in the Premier League. He has made 10 appearances across all competitions for Erik ten Hag’s side this season.
– Galatasaray attacking midfielder Nicolo Zaniolo is attracting interest from Serie A, reports Calciomercato. Both AC Milan and Juventus have placed the 23-year-old on their radar, following a bright start to life in the Super Lig with two goals in his first four appearances. Zaniolo arrived in Turkey after joining from AS Roma in February.
– Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric is becoming uncomfortable with the situation at the Santiago Bernabeu, says Goal. Modric, 37, is out of contract in the summer. With Madrid taking time with their proposal as they consider his age and status in the team, the Croatia international is concerned with how the club have changed their stance on how they usually handle contract negotiations.
– Chelsea will make midfielder N’Golo Kante a long-term part of the project, writes Fabrizio Romano. Talks are ongoing with the Stamford Bridge hierarchy over a new contract, with the 32-year-old’s terms set to expire in June. Kante was a standout performer Tuesday night as he returned to action with a strong performance in the Premier League 0-0 draw against Liverpool.
– Paris Saint-Germain are looking to loan out defender El Chadaille Bitshiabu next season, according to Foot Mercato. The 17-year-old has impressed when handed opportunities in the first team, but the club’s hierarchy believe he could benefit from a loan move to become more accustomed to the physicality of senior level football. It is reported that they would ensure that any move away from the Parc des Princes would be strictly a loan without the option to become permanent.