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LIVE Transfer Talk: Lacazette to Atleti when Auba signs

 

The coronavirus pandemic has made the transfer market uncertain — and you can find out when the windows open here — but here are the rumours floating around Europe’s big leagues and beyond.

TOP STORY: Lacazette to Atleti when Auba signs new Arsenal deal

The future of Arsenal’s forward line is going to be the story of the summer for Mikel Arteta’s men, and the Daily Star reports the Gunners have got their transfer tactics all planned out.

Arteta has always been confident that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who is in the final 11 months of his contract, will sign a new deal. And the Star says that as soon as the ink is dry on that extension, Alexandre Lacazette will be sold to Atletico Madrid.

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Arsenal do not want to lose both of their senior strikers this summer, so want to make sure Aubameyang is tied down before allowing Lacazette to make the switch to La Liga in a £30 million deal.

With Eddie Nketiah and Gabriel Martinelli breaking through at the Emirates, moving Lacazette on would release funds for strengthening elsewhere.

LIVE BLOG

20.00 BST: Chelsea have been quite the movers this transfer period. They have secured Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech and remain favourites for Kai Havertz. But the braintrust at Stamford Bridge are very aware that they must bolster their defence. EuSportFeeds’s Ian Darke opines that West Ham United’s Declan Rice could be Chelsea’s most important target — if they can get him to move from the other side of London.

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Ian Darke says Chelsea are looking to spend “a whole lot of money” during the transfer window.

19.15 BST: Manchester United will have a goalkeeper quandry on their hands next season as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admits he can’t keep all three of David de Gea, Sergio Romero, and Dean Henderson on the squad. Henderson finished a solid season on loan at Sheffield United, while De Gea and Romero have had their limitations.

“We have Dean, Sergio and David in the ranks but it’ll be difficult obviously to keep three of them at the club. We’ll see what the decision will be there,” Solskjaer said.

So which one (or two? or all three?) of the union will depart?

18.20 BST: Long rumoured with a return to Sevilla FC, can the Andalusian club seal the deal to bring back Ivan Rakitic from Barcelona? According to Sevilla sporting director Monchi, don’t count on it. Speaking to Diario de Sevilla, Monchi said: “I think it will be difficult to bring Rakitic back to Sevilla. I don’t hide it, Rakitic is my friend, but as of today, it’s tough, if not impossible. More difficult things have happened in football, but I don’t see it in the short term. It’s so difficult financially that I don’t see it.”

Croatian sensation Rakitic made the move to Barca in 2014 and has enjoyed success at Camp Nou following his three-season tenure at Sevilla. With his contract is set to expire in 2021, it is believed Rakitic would been open to a return.

17.19 BST: Carlos Tevez has ended speculation about his future by signing a new contract at Boca Juniors through to the end of June 2021. But the story may not end there, as there is the option to extend the deal by six months — and that would almost take him to his 38th birthday. Sounds like the perfect way to wrap up a career at the club where his story began?

16.41 BST: Hold the back page! We told you earlier how both Leicester City and Liverpool were tracking Olympiakos left-back Kostas Tsimikas. It was thought that Liverpool were prioritising Norwich City full-back Jamal Lewis, but after the two clubs failed agree on a fee it seems Tsimikas is now Jurgen Klopp’s No. 1 target. It’s all moved on pretty rapidly with a €13m deal set to be tied up in the next few days.

16.04 BST: Over in France, L’Equipe reports that AS Monaco are hoping to steal a march on Premier League rivals by making a move for United States international Weston McKennie. He has made it clear he wants to leave Schalke in search of a new challenge and has ambitions to play in England. The 21-year-old central midfielder is being eyed by Niko Kovak, the former Bayern Munich boss who is now in charge at Monaco. Southampton could yet beat them to the chase.

15.28 BST: Willian will end his seven-year spell at Chelsea this summer, the player announced on social media on Sunday. The Brazil international had been in talks over a new contract at Stamford Bridge but negotiations broke down over the length of his deal.

“They were seven wonderful years,” he wrote on Twitter. “In August 2013 when I received the offer from Chelsea, I was convinced that this was where I had to play. Today I am certain that it was the best of decisions. There were so many happy times, some sad, there were trophies and it was always very intense.”

Sources have told EuSportFeeds that the 32-year-old has agreed a three-year deal at Arsenal worth around £100,000-a-week.

Pedro, also out of contract, has said his goodbyes too.

14.50 BST: Could Burnley striker Chris Wood really be headed for Serie A? Corriere dello Sport reports that the 28-year-old has offered himself to Lazio ahead of the club’s return to the Champions League next season. The Sun, meanwhile, says that Lazio are interested in AFC Bournemouth striker Joshua King but he’s too expensive at £30m.

14.16 BST: Marca reports that Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane will be concentrating on attacking targets as he looks to put his squad together for next season after the Champions League exit to Manchester City. With Karim Benzema remains as vital as ever, they have looked short. Eden Hazard had an injury-hit first season, while Gareth Bale is totally out of favour and Marco Asensio, Rodrygo Goes and Vinicius Junior have not stepped up.

13.42 BST: Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez has been one of the stand-out players in the Premier League post-lockdown, proving to be an assured figure between the sticks for the Gunners after Bernd Leno’s injury. But now he’s had a taste of first-team football, he doesn’t want to find himself back on the bench.

“I have shown that I am good enough for Arsenal and when I return next season I need more games. It’s the only way I will stay,” he told Continental radio in Argentina. “I want to keep my place and to reach the Argentine national team as No. 1. I won’t stop until I get that and if I don’t play for Arsenal, then clearly I will move on.”

13.09 BST: There was a time, not so long ago, when Lucas Torreira was expected to be a central figure in the Arsenal midfield for years to come. But the Uruguay international has seen his stock fall dramatically over the last 12 months and he now appears surplus to requirements. Mundo Deportivo reports that Atletico Madrid, who have tracked Torreira in the past, could be ready to make a move. La Gazzetta dello Sport reckons that Fiorentina could provide competition for the 24-year-old’s services.

12.30 BST: Olympiakos left-back Kostas Tsimikas is being linked with a move to the Premier League by the Daily Mail. According to the report, Leicester City and Liverpool have both made enquiries about his availability, with a fee of £12m suggested. Liverpool seem set to sign Jamal Lewis from Norwich City to bolster their defensive options, which would leave Leicester at the front of the queue should they decide to cash in on the in-demand Ben Chilwell. Everton and Chelsea have also scouted the 24-year-old.

11.53 BST: The Sunday Mirror reports that Kyle Walker-Peters has agreed personal terms with Southampton and is set to turn his loan spell from Tottenham Hotspur into a permanent move. Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg is set to go in the opposite direction next week in a separate deal. Saints are set to pay £12m plus add-ons for the defender.

11.21 BST: Le10 Sport in France is reporting that Arsenal are monitoring Marseille midfielder Morgan Sanson. Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United had previously been linked with the 25-year-old, and now the Gunners have reportedly entered the race.

10.41 BST: Chivas and Mexico striker Jose Juan Macias could be nearing a move to La Liga’s Real Sociedad with the clubs currently in talks, according to Mexican journalist Martin del Palacio and other reports in Mexico.

The 20-year-old has been linked with a move to Europe for some time and Chivas have stated the forward will be allowed to leave if a good enough offer comes in. AS Mexico reported that Lille, Lazio and Marseille, as well as Real Sociedad, are all interested in the Mexican.

Macias has four goals in 261 minutes so far since debuting for the Mexico national team and started for Chivas on Saturday night in Liga MX against Puebla.

10.10 BST: We’ve been expecting this for a while, but Lille have now confirmed the signing of Angel Gomes after the England youth international turned down a new contract at Manchester United. He will spend next season on loan in Portugal with Boavista.

09.30 BST: We heard about Chelsea’s interest in Brighton & Hove Albion’s Ben White, and now the Sunday Mirror has linked Frank Lampard’s men with a £20m bid for Manchester City centre-back John Stones. There appears to be little future for Stones at the Etihad after they signed Nathan Ake from AFC Bournemouth, and Lampard could look to the England international to try and plug his leaky defence.

PAPER ROUND

Liverpool and Chelsea in battle to sign White

Liverpool and Chelsea are set to battle it out for Brighton’s Ben White following the central defender’s successful loan spell at Leeds United last season.

That’s according to the Daily Star who report that Liverpool are planning a £20m bid for White, who was ever-present for Marcelo Bielsa’s side as they won the Championship.

However, Liverpool face pressure from Chelsea who are keen to plug their porous defence. Frank Lampard had the leakiest back line in the top four, and the 7-1 aggregate defeat at the hands of Bayern Munich in the Champions League further highlighted the problem.

Chelsea appear set to move on some big-name players this summer and, alongside Kepa Arrizabalaga, defender Antonio Rudiger could also be on his way as Lampard makes way for White and more.

Brighton boss Graham Potter has previously said that he would like to keep White at Brighton, despite the fact that the defender hasn’t played a game for the Seagulls. The club believe the player is worth £40m, twice what Liverpool are rumoured to be offering.

Benfica attempt to lure Cavani to Portugal

Former Paris Saint-Germain striker Edinson Cavani is in talks with Benfica with a view to joining the Portuguese club this summer, according to L’Equipe.

Cavani has just left the French champions and it is believed that Benfica officials are doing everything they can to sign the Uruguay international.

The 33-year-old is believed to also be attracting interest from Everton and Leeds, though no bid has been forthcoming from either club.

The only sticking point in the move could be the player’s salary. Cavani was on €12m a year in the French capital, which could be too rich for the Eagles.

The striker scored four goals in seven matches in 2019-20. In total, he scored 138 goals in 200 games at PSG.

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PSG still searching for Thiago Silva-lining

PSG are still searching for Thiago Silva‘s replacement at the heart of the defence, and Gazzetta Dello Sport believe the French side are considering a move for €40m-rated Nikola Milenkovic.

PSG’s defence has been made even weaker following Tanguy Kouassi’s move to Bayern Munich, and while sporting director Leonardo has already sounded out the potential of signing Milan Skriniar or Kalidou Koulibaly, Fiorentina defender Milenkovic would appear to be at the top of the French club’s shopping list.

PSG may face competition for the Serbian defender, though. Both AC Milan and Internazionale are believed to be interested, and the 22-year-old may prefer to stay in Italy. However, the French champions will almost certainly be able to outbid their rivals.

Tap ins

– Newcastle United are believed to be prioritising British talent this summer and top of Steve Bruce’s homegrown shopping list is Bournemouth striker Callum Wilson, according to the Daily Mail. Wilson could though be an expensive option for the Magpies, though, who are also considering a move for Republic of Ireland international Jeff Hendrick following his release from Burnley. Bruce is also believed to be looking at Bournemouth duo Josh King and David Brooks, though he may have as little as £30m to spend.

– Chelsea have been boosted in their bid to sign West Ham United’s Declan Rice, with the Hammers considering selling the England international in an effort to rebuild their squad, according to the Sun. The Hammers have insisted they have no desire to sell Rice, but Chelsea are determined to land the 21-year-old and convert him back into a defender. Should Chelsea bid £70m, it would be hard for the Hammers to turn down.

– Sheffield United are keen to keep Dean Henderson at Bramall Lane next season, but Manchester United are demanding the Blades pay all of the goalkeeper’s wages, says the Sun. That poses a problem for Chris Wilder’s club, who have been able to pay a chunk of the star’s salary but wouldn’t be able to pay it in full. Manchester United are considering sending Henderson back out on loan next season despite offering him a long contract, but they want any prospective club to finance his £100k-a-week wages.