The 2022 January transfer window is open (find out when it closes here), and there’s 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: Arsenal weigh Sanches, Aouar moves
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has said he’s hoping for a busy end to the January transfer window and reports have now surfaced that suggest he’s looking to swoop for Renato Sanches and Houssem Aouar to bolster the club’s midfield, according to the Mirror and Eurosport, respectively.
Sanches, 24, has turned down a new contract at Lille after helping them win the Ligue 1 title last season, and has admitted that he’s “ready” to move if a suitable offer arrives. The former Bayern Munich star is open to a return to the Premier League, where he feels he has unfinished business after a disappointing loan spell at Swansea City in 2017-18, and could cost around €35m with his contract expiring in 2023.
Meanwhile, the Gunners are also one of three clubs battling to sign 23-year-old midfielder Aouar. Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has said that two clubs are looking to sign Aouar on a short-term deal, with one club a more long-term option. Aulas also admitted that none of those aforementioned clubs are yet to meet Lyon’s valuation, a reported €45m, which means Arsenal will have to go back to the drawing board if they have any chance of getting this move over the line.
13.02 GMT: Portuguese outlet O Jogo claims Manchester United are in pole position to sign FC Porto forward Luis Diaz.
Diaz, 25, has 16 goals and four assists from 24 appearances this season and impressed for Colombia at the Copa America over the summer where he finished as joint-top goal scorer of the tournament alongside Argentina’s Lionel Messi.
Atletico Madrid and Borussia Dortmund have been scouting Diaz, but interim United boss Ralf Rangnick is a big fan and could sanction a move over the summer when his release clause reportedly drops from €80m to nearer €50m.
12.42 GMT: Bayern Munich have made contact with the agent of Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong in a bid to beat Chelsea, Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain to his signature, says Marca.
De Jong, 24, joined from Ajax in 2019 for around €75m but has struggled to live up to expectations.
The Netherlands international could be allowed to depart if Barca receive a big fee, with Bayern boss Julian Nagelsmann looking to add to his midfield options.
12.04 GMT: Tottenham midfielder Dele Alli could depart on loan this month and Everton are ready to rival Newcastle for his signature, says the Daily Telegraph.
Alli, 25, has slipped out of form in recent seasons and is a shadow of his former self on the pitch. But there are a number of clubs willing to offer him a chance to reignite his career before the January window closes.
11.30 GMT: Should Barcelona be using €55m-new signing Ferran Torres in a different position?
Craig Burley questions Xavi’s decision to not play Ferran Torres through the middle in Barcelona’s win.
10.54 GMT: Liverpool defender Joe Gomez is on the radar of Aston Villa, says Football Insider.
Gomez, 24, has slipped down the pecking order at Anfield since recovering from his long-term injury and Villa have had an impressive transfer window so far.
10.32 GMT: The Athletic claims Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang wants to stay in Europe if he leaves the club.
Aubameyang, 32, was stripped of the captaincy and has not played since Dec. 6 over what the club called “his latest disciplinary breach.”
The Gabon international has been given a clean bill of health after leaving the Africa Cup of Nations to return to London for heart checks but his club future is uncertain and he is under contract until the summer of 2023.
Saudi Arabian side Al Hilal have reportedly made a loan offer, which would cover his full salary and contain an option to sign him permanently for £7m, but Arsenal have yet to respond.
The Athletic says that Aubameyang “is inclined not to accept a transfer to the Middle East at this stage of his career” and is awaiting interest from clubs in Europe.
09.54 GMT: Manchester City are close to sealing a deal for River Plate forward Julian Alvarez, sources have told ESPN’s Rob Dawson.
City believe they have seen off competition from AC Milan for the 21-year-old Argentinian with the final details to be ironed out before an agreement is reached. Sources have told ESPN the overall cost of the transfer could be less than £20 million.
It is likely that Alvarez, who has already been capped five times by Argentina, won’t move to the Etihad Stadium until next summer at the earliest but sources have told ESPN he would be considered a first-team signing.
Until he is ready to move to England, City will consider loaning him back to River Plate or arranging another loan elsewhere.
09.41 GMT: Fiorentina general director Joe Barone has requested that star striker Dusan Vlahovic be clear about what his intentions are.
Vlahovic, 21, has attracted the attention of top clubs in Europe after scoring 20 goals in 24 games in all competitions for the Viola this season. However, with his contract expiring in 2023, the Serbia international has made it clear that he won’t sign a new one.
Barone confirmed on Saturday that several Premier League clubs are interested in signing Vlahovic, with Arsenal the most active over a potential €80m move, but no progress has been made with the player reportedly keen to join Juventus at the end of the season.
“Every day there’s talk of Vlahovic and I’ve already spoken about this issue,” he said. “For the time being Fiorentina has not received anything. We are open to everything, but we want clarity from the player and his entourage.”
09.20 GMT: Australia international Milos Degenek is hoping a fresh start — mooted to be with Major League Soccer’s Columbus Crew — can have him at his best leading into the 2022 World Cup.
Degenek departed Red Star Belgrade earlier this month after a successful three-year spell across two stints with the Serbian outfit, highlighted by three league titles and a cup triumph. He also played in the UEFA Champions League against some of the biggest teams in the world, including Liverpool and Paris Saint-Germain.
It is expected Degenek’s switch to the Crew will be confirmed as soon as Tuesday, in a move the 27-year-old says was driven by his desire to be at his peak leading into the World Cup.
“Because the World Cup is on this year I want give myself the best possible chance to stay fit, and obviously to prolong my career as well,” he said. “To go somewhere where it’s a fit and healthy environment.
“Where I’ve got the best support around me to give me the best possible chance to go to the World Cup and the best possible chance to play well for our country. That probably helped me a bit decide on where I’m going to play in the future.”
08.30 GMT: Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick has left the door open for some of his fringe players to leave in the last week of the January transfer window.
Rangnick revealed there are “negotiations with clubs” going on behind the scenes at Old Trafford as players look to for an exit before the deadline on Jan. 31.
Sources have told ESPN that Anthony Martial, Jesse Lingard, Donny van de Beek, Eric Bailly and Dean Henderson are among the players interested in moving in a bid to find more regular first team football.
“I don’t know [what’s going to happen], I know which players would want to leave,” said Rangnick. “I know that there are some negotiations with clubs but I am not involved in that but I will probably be posted and made aware if something is happening. We will all have to wait and see what happens.”
Nedum Onuoha weighs in on the substance of Tottenham’s talent after their 2-0 loss to Chelsea.
PAPER GOSSIP (by Nick Judd)
– Tottenham Hotspur boss Antonio Conte has urged his board to back him with reinforcements in January, but he looks set to miss out on one of his top targets in Franck Kessie, according to Calciomercato. Spurs managing director Fabio Paratici thought he had reached an agreement with AC Milan to sign 25-year-old Kessie this month, with the midfielder out of contract in the summer. However, it now appears as though Kessie — currently playing for Ivory Coast in the Africa Cup of Nations — wants to see out his contract at San Siro instead and take more time to work out his next move.
– Galatasaray are closing in on Benfica star Gedson Fernandes, according to Portuguese journalist Pedro Sepulveda. The two clubs are believed to have shaken hands on an 18-month loan deal, with the finer details to be completed this week. If the move goes through, the 23-year-old is expected to make the switch from Portugal to Turkey on Monday. Fernandes has already spent six months on loan at Galatasaray after joining in January last year, during which he played 17 times.
– Ajax left-back Nicolas Tagliafico is a wanted man, and Fabrizio Romano believes the 25-year-old is pushing for a move to Barcelona before the end of the transfer window. Ajax are asking the Spaniards to complete a permanent move, but Barca are apprehensive and instead would rather sign him on loan. Tagliafico, who has also been linked with a move to Manchester City by the English press, is hoping Ajax and Barca can come to an agreement so that he can “advance his career.”
– Brentford are moving ever closer to offering 29-year-old Denmark midfielder Christian Eriksen a six-month loan contract, reports Sky Sports, but he’ll have to pass a diligent medical before obtaining his work permit. Eriksen’s medical process will be more complicated than usual after he suffered a cardiac arrest at Euro 2020 last summer. He now has an ICD (implantable cardioverter-defibrillator) fitted to his heart, which means he’ll need to be signed off by a club-assigned sports cardiologist before being given the green light to join the Bees.
– Despite their disappointment over Kessie, Spurs may yet use this January transfer window to have a bit of a reshuffle and they’re apparently willing to listen to offers for trio Dele Alli, Giovani Lo Celso and Bryan Gil, according to Goal and Marca, respectively. Both Alli and Lo Celso were missing from the squad that lost to Chelsea on Sunday, with 25-year-old Alli heavily linked with a move to Newcastle United. Meanwhile, Valencia have asked if they can take Gil on loan for the rest of the season. Real Sociedad and Nice are also keen on the 20-year-old winger.