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Transfer news, rumours and today’s football gossip | January 12, 2019

Barcelona have joined the race for Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata, reports The Sun.

Juventus are planning a summer swoop for Real Madrid outcast Isco, according to The Mail. 

Manchester United and Arsenal have joined the race to sign Porto star Yacine Brahimi, reports The Mirror. 

Chelsea have agreed in principle deals with Leandro Paredes and Nicola Barella, according to The Telegraph. 

Monaco manager Thierry Henry is set to offer Michy Batshuayi an escape route out of Chelsea, reports The Sun. 

We’ll bring you today’s football gossip and the latest from ArsenalMan UtdChelseaLiverpoolTottenhamWest HamMan City and more over the course of the window…

Live Updates





Puncheon starts for Huddersfield

 

Loan signing Jason Puncheon was handed his Huddersfield debut and Christopher Schindler returned from suspension as the Terriers made six changes after losing at Bristol City.

WEST HAM NEWS



Is this farewell?

 

Marko Arnautovic waves at the London Stadium crowd as he’s withdrawn midway through the second half. 

 

The Hammers lead Arsenal with 10 minutes remaining, Carroll on in Arnautovic’s place. 

 

EUROPEAN NEWS



Monaco midfield recruitment drive

 

Struggling Monaco followed up the signing of Cesc Fabregas by reinforcing their midfield with Frenchman William Vainqueur, joining on loan from Antalyaspor until the end of the season.

Vainqueur, 30, currently has a calf problem but Monaco said on Saturday they had been won over by the motivation of the former Nantes, Standard Liege, Dynamo Moscow and Roma player.

The arrival of the ex-France Under-21 international, who had a loan spell at Marseille in 2016-17, comes after Spain international Fabregas signed on Friday.

Coach Thierry Henry is under pressure with Monaco second-bottom in Ligue 1, five points adrift of the safety zone.

EUROPEAN NEWS



Barca striker shortage

 

Munir El Haddadi has joined Sevilla for a fee of around £1million, leaving a striker shortage at Barcelona.

The forward, who came through the youth system at the Catalan club and has had spells on loan at Valencia and Alaves, was out of contract at the end of the season and turned down a new deal with the Liga leaders.

That refusal to sign saw him ruled out of Barca’s recent matches and he now departs for Sevilla, where he will compete with Andre Silva and Wissam Ben Yedder for a starting spot.

 

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But his exit leaves Barca with a problem as there is now no back-up for Luis Suarez in the centre-forward role.

With Munir at Alaves last season and at Valencia for the previous campaign, Paco Alcacer was the reserve striker at Camp Nou, but the Spain forward left to join Borussia Dortmund on loan in the summer following a lack of opportunities and has now made the move permanent.

Suarez is rarely sidelined, of course, having missed only 11 matches due to injury in his entire career. That is an incredible record, but the lack of a back-up option means it will be more difficult for him to be rested between now and the end of the season.

The Uruguayan did not feature in 2-1 loss away to Levante in the Copa del Rey on Thursday night as Lionel Messi also sat out, but Barca’s attack was not very effective without a centre-forward and the situation is not ideal.

The cup competition is not a priority this season, however, and Barca fans will hope Suarez is kept fresh for more important matches in the Champions League and La Liga.

As things stand, the Catalans are unlikely to sign a striker in the current window to replace Munir, with Messi able to play as a false nine if necessary, as well as Ousmane Dembele and Malcom. Youngster Abel Ruiz could also be promoted from Barca B to provide back-up.
 

ARSENAL NEWS



Ozil left out for tactical reasons

 

We understand that Mesut Ozil is NOT injured. He’s just been left out of the squad. 

 

Considering Arsenal have three defenders on the bench, that’s some statement. 

 

WEST HAM NEWS



More from London Stadium

 

Manuel Pellegrini has handed Samir Nasri a first Premier League start at West Ham, against his old club as Arsenal visit London Stadium.

 

The French midfielder, who signed on a short term deal last month following an 18-month doping ban, has not started in the Premier League since Manchester City lost 4-2 at Southampton in April 2016.

Nasri, 31, made 126 in his time at Arsenal before leaving to join City where he worked alongside Pellegrini. He played an impressive hour as the Hammers beat Birmingham in the FA Cup last weekend on his debut for the club.

For Arsenal Mesut Ozil, who has trained all week with the squad, is not fit to return though Hector Bellerin and Laurent Koscielny are in to the matchday squad. Unai Emery remains without Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

After a week of speculation around his future, in which West Ham rejected a bid of £35million from Shanghai SIPG, Marko Arnautovic is trusted to lead the line ahead of an ambitious midfield, with Nasri playing as a No10 between Felipe Anderson and Michail Antonio.

BREAKING NEWS



Team news

 

Samir Nasri starts for West Ham. There is no Mesut Ozil in the Arsenal squad.

CHELSEA NEWS



Barca join Morata race

 

Barcelona have reportedly joined the race for wantaway Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata. 

Morata is desperate to quit the Blues this month after scoring just five goals in all competitions this term and The Sun report Barca are keen on the Spaniard.

 

AP

Atletico Madrid and Sevilla have also shown an interest, with the latter lodging a loan-to-buy bid worth up to £40million. 

That would mean Chelsea, who paid £58m for Morata in 2017, would take a sizeable loss on a player who still has over three years left on his contract and is still aged only 26.

Sevilla Director of Football Joaquin Caparros said: “We are interested in Morata, but it is a very complicated operation due to his cost.

“The player wants to come here over other options, but the negotiation with Chelsea will be very complicated.”



Puel on ‘crazy’ pressure

 

Leicester boss Claude Puel is fed up of the speculation surrounding his job.

The Frenchman’s first full season in charge at the King Power Stadium has been against a back drop of fan frustration and, according to some reports, dressing room unrest.

His position has felt under constant scrutiny amid the sense that his tenure could come to an end at any moment.

 

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Puel polarises opinion among a divided fanbase, with ‘Puel In’ or ‘Puel Out’ hashtags on social media after almost every game.

This is despite Leicester currently being seventh in the Premier League table, which is arguably as high as they could expect to be given the size and spending power of the clubs above them.

That irks Puel, who said: “All the time there is speculation about difficulty around this club. I can speak a lot about this.

“To finish seventh during the first half of the season with all the problems we’ve had, it’s a very good performance. If people think our place is sixth, or higher, this is not the truth, it’s not possible.

“If seventh or eighth is bad then this is crazy.”

WEST HAM NEWS



Samir Nasri on ‘revenge mission’ at West Ham

Samir Nasri will continue on his “revenge” mission when he faces former club Arsenal on Saturday, according to West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini.

Nasri is poised to make his Premier League debut for West Ham in the lunchtime clash at the London Stadium.

The former France international signed for West Ham on New Year’s Eve after completing a doping ban for using intravenous drip treatment.

Nasri, who had been training with the Hammers for a month, played his first match in more than a year when he started the FA Cup victory over Birmingham last weekend.

PA

 

The 31-year-old put in an impressive 60-minute display and Pellegrini – under whom Nasri won the Premier League title with Manchester City – is confident he can recapture his best form.

Pellegrini also believes Nasri has a point to prove following his suspension.

“He wants revenge, about the ban of 12 months or more, to decline his career,” said Pellegrini.

“From Arsenal, then City bought him. From there his career declined, without doubt.

“I think we can expect a lot from him because he is a top player. He continues having some minutes, and when he is used to playing 90 minutes again he will be a top player at this club.”

ES COVERAGE



Good morning, and welcome back to our rolling news coverage of the January transfer window!

ES COVERAGE



That’s it from us tonight. With Cesc Fabregas moving on, expect some serious activity at Chelsea in the coming days.

 

Join us again tomorrow morning. 

CHELSEA NEWS



Cesc Fabregas says goodbye to Chelsea

 

“It’s with mixed emotions that I am writing this message,” the Spaniard wrote on Instagram.

“To everyone at Chelsea Football Club. The owner Mr Abramovich who brought me here, to my teammates who helped me win so many trophies, to the staff who made my time here so easy and to all you fans who made me feel so special week in week out.

“It has been an incredible journey and it is with great sadness that I must say goodbye. I will miss you all and wish you the best of luck for the future.”

CHELSEA NEWS



Robben encourages Hudson-Odoi to join Bayern

 

Arjen Robben has become the latest member of the Bayern Munich camp to talk up Callum Hudson Odoi’s move to Bavaria.

 

In a move that is unlikely to please his former club, Robben told beIN Sports.

“He is one of the best (young players) in Europe.

 

“You are better off getting your chance and if you get that chance then you have to take it.

 

“For young players, it’s always the same. First, you have to take the big step to achieve it.

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Become a professional football player at the highest level, get into the first team, get your place.

 

“Then, second, which can be more important, what’s sometimes missing is that you have to stay there.

 

“Staying there is often more difficult than actually becoming a footballer in the first place.

 

“You have to to prove it, game after game, season after season and don’t be happy.

“Don’t just be happy when you achieve something little or small.”

 

Reports in Germany have suggested Hudson-Odoi could get Robben’s no.10 shirt if he arrives at the Allianz Arena. 

LIVERPOOL NEWS



Camacho not leaving Liverpool

 

Jurgen Klopp has ruled out the possibility of Rafael Camacho leaving Liverpool before the end of the January transfer window.

The 18-year-old, who made his first-team debut in the Reds’ FA Cup defeat at Wolves on Monday, has attracted interest from former club Sporting Lisbon in recent weeks.

Getty

Camacho left Sporting to join Liverpool’s academy after a successful trial in 2016, and the Portuguese club are keen to strike a permanent deal to bring him back this winter.

Rangers have also been linked with a loan swoop for the teenager, who played under Steven Gerrard during his time in the club’s youth setup. 

However, when asked about the possibility of such a move materialising this month, Klopp said: “No, Rafa will not leave.”

CHELSEA NEWS



Sevilla agree deal for Munir El Haddadi

 

Sevilla have confirmed they have a deal in place to sign Munir El Haddadi from Barcelona – subject to personal terms and a medical.

 

That could mean the end of their interest in Alvaro Morata…

CRYSTAL PALACE NEWS



Palace were never interested in Defoe – Hodgson 

 

There is no doubt Crystal Palace are in the market for a striker to help them avoid a relegation battle this season.

But Roy Hodgson insists the club were never interested in bringing Jermain Defoe to the club. He told a press conference today:

“I saw his name mentioned in relation to the club but it’s one thing people relating their players that they’re anxious to find moves for to our club and another thing our club initiating moves to sign a player.”

“I can state quite categorically we made no move at all to sign Jermain here.”
“I like him and I think he’s good player and I’m pleased he’s gone to Glasgow Rangers, but we were not one of the candidates for his signature.”

EUROPEAN NEWS



Fabregas ready for Monaco debut

 

Sat second bottom of Ligue 1, Monaco need to start winning games quickly with Cesc Fabregas suggesting he could come straight into the team this weekend.

 

He told the club’s website: It is a great pleasure to join AS Monaco, a new project for me. The group is of quality with young players and a young coach. 

 

“I’m here to help the team, I’m looking forward to starting, we have a great match to play in Marseille on Sunday. I am very excited.”

CHELSEA NEWS



Here’s every word of Chelsea’s warm tribute to their now former player, posted on their website this evening.

 

Cesc Fabregas has today completed a permanent transfer to Monaco.

The midfielder’s switch to the Ligue 1 club brings the curtain down on his four-and-a-half year Chelsea career, a period in which he won four major trophies, including two Premier League titles.

The Spaniard made 198 appearances for Chelsea, scoring 22 goals.

We thank Cesc for his wonderful service and wish him the very best of luck for the next chapter in what has been a fantastic career.
 
Farewell to a champion

Two Premier League titles, one FA Cup and one League Cup. Every major domestic honour ticked off.

An impressive medal haul for any player.

Fabregas arrived at Stamford Bridge as a European Championship and World Cup-winner with Spain, and at club level the midfielder enjoyed a fruitful period in terms of securing major trophies here at Chelsea, having played an integral role in each of those triumphs.

Possessing a superb range of passing, an eye for goal and the ability to use the ball well under pressure, it comes as no surprise that Fabregas has been such a key figure in the Chelsea midfield over the last four-and-a-half years.

He also deserves great credit for his versatility. Over the course of his time at the club, Fabregas played as a deep-lying midfielder in a 4-2-3-1, as part of a pair in a 3-4-3, further forward in the ‘number 10’ role and, most recently, as the playmaker in a 4-3-3, with his footballing intelligence allowing him to adapt to whatever role he has been asked to fulfil.

The midfielder departs England with the second-highest number of assists in Premier League history, 111, after recently making his 350th appearance in the competition during our game against Southampton, and he was also the fastest player to reach 100 Premier League assists, achieving the feat in just 293 matches.

Fabregas signed in the summer of 2014 as Jose Mourinho sought to add a creative presence in midfield following the departure of club legend Frank Lampard at the end of the previous season.

Immediate impact

Supporters wouldn’t have to wait long to witness his ability to open up opposition defences and provide goalscoring opportunities for his team-mates as Fabregas enjoyed a debut to remember in our opening game of the 2014/15 season at Burnley.

Operating in a deep midfield role, he dictated the tempo of the game throughout and provided the outstanding moment of quality when he laid on our second goal for Andre Schurrle with an exquisite first-time pass. He then supplied the corner from which Branislav Ivanovic made it 3-1 and deservedly walked away with the Man of the Match award. Two assists in one game. It was a sign of things to come

Fabregas had hit the ground running and the assists continued to arrive early in the campaign, with Diego Costa in particular benefiting from his outstanding ability to pick – and execute – a pass, before he netted his first goal for the club in a Champions League game against Schalke at the Bridge.

Mourinho deployed Fabregas alongside Nemanja Matic in a 4-2-3-1 formation and the Blues remained without a defeat in the Premier League until early December, topping the table at Christmas. One of the victories included in that unbeaten sequence came at Crystal Palace when Fabregas finished off a superb passing move to score his first Premier League goal for the club.

By the February, Fabregas had won his first trophy as a Chelsea player.

 

Tottenham were beaten 2-0 at Wembley in the League Cup final and it was the Spaniard who provided the pass from which Diego Costa scored our second goal.
His experience and calmness under pressure was pivotal as we closed in on the title and Fabregas scored our most important goal of the campaign, an 88th-minute winner away at QPR in April, to send us seven points clear at the top of the table.

Victories in three of our next four matches ensured we were crowned champions and Fabregas, who provided 24 assists over the course of the Premier League campaign, was an English top-flight title-winner for the first time in his career.

Outstanding technical ability

What marked him out as such a talented player during his time at the club was the fact he refused to take the easy option in possession. On receiving the ball, his first thought was always to try and open up the opposition defence, and he did it so well on countless occasions.

Think of Fabregas’ most memorable assists and immediately there are a few which spring to mind: The first-time half-volley on his debut against Burnley, the ball from deep which allowed Diego Costa to lob Wojciech Szczesny against Arsenal, the stunning incisive clip in behind the Watford defence from which the striker netted the winner against Watford. The list is endless.

His relationship with Diego Costa was a pivotal factor in the success the team enjoyed when the duo played together, while Fabregas’ mental sharpness ensured he enjoyed a fantastic on-pitch understanding with the likes of Eden Hazard, Willian and Pedro, a former team-mate of his with Spain and Barcelona.

Fabregas’ second season at the club was one of collective frustration but the Spaniard was our joint-highest appearance maker, and among the six goals he scored were a late equaliser away at Southampton and a superb free-kick against West Ham in a 2-2 draw at the Bridge.
 
Perhaps the biggest test of his time at the club was when Antonio Conte took charge in 2016 and switched to a 3-4-3 system early in the season, with Matic and N’Golo Kante, an arrival from Leicester that summer, preferred as the midfield pairing.

Fabregas was used predominantly off the bench early in the campaign although his influence on the team remained. In our first away game of the season, he teed up Diego Costa to score the decisive goal at Watford with an exceptional ball in behind the home side’s defence, and the Spaniard himself netted an extra-time brace as we came from behind to beat Leicester in the League Cup.

As the season progressed, Fabregas’ involvement increased, and December was a particularly positive month. With Matic injured, he was handed a rare league start for the trip to Manchester City and impressed, laying on our equaliser for Diego Costa in a 3-1 win with a pinpoint ball which the forward controlled and brought down before firing home.

Eleven days later Fabregas showcased his wonderful technical ability with a fine curling finish from outside the box against Sunderland, the only goal of the game, and he provided two more assists as we won a 13th consecutive league game against Stoke City.

In February, he put the seal on an important win against former club Arsenal with a deft lob over the head of Petr Cech, and Fabregas was outstanding in the 3-1 victory over Swansea, opening the scoring with a well-taken finish before recording his 102nd assist for Pedro on what was his 300th Premier League appearance.

As the Blues closed in on the title Fabregas started more frequently, including in a huge 2-1 win over Man City at the Bridge, while becoming the first player to register 10 assists in six different Premier League seasons as we beat Middlesbrough.

His second Premier League title was secured in our next game, away at West Bromwich Albion, with Fabregas completing the full match, and we were only denied what would have been the second Double in the club’s history after losing 2-1 to Arsenal in the FA Cup final, when Fabregas was introduced as a second-half substitute.

FA Cup success

Fabregas made his 100th appearance for the club in last season’s 1-0 league win over Manchester United and, after scoring a brilliant winner against Swansea at the Liberty Stadium , it was his pass which set Hazard free before he was scythed down by Phil Jones in the FA Cup final. The Belgian, of course, converted the resulting spot-kick to ensure Fabregas had won every major domestic honour during his time as a Chelsea player.

With midfielder Jorginho following Maurizio Sarri, his former manager at Napoli, to Stamford Bridge ahead of the current campaign, opportunities for Fabregas in the Premier League have been limited. He featured heavily in both the Europa League, when he captained the club for the first time in a competitive match against MOL Vidi, and League Cup, his goal proving decisive as we overcame Derby County in the fourth round.

In a game against Liverpool in that competition earlier this season Fabregas produced a passing masterclass. The home side couldn’t get near him in the first half and, given time on the ball, he was able to play it long, short, right and left at will. One particular ball, hit first-time over his shoulder to the feet of Cesar Azpilicueta from the edge of our own penalty area, was a moment of pure quality.

Fabregas made his 350th Premier League appearance when he came off the bench in our recent draw against Southampton, and his final game in a blue shirt followed against Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup last weekend, when he was given the send-off his performances for the club have merited after the final whistle had sounded.

There is no doubt Fabregas’s place in the Chelsea history books is assured given his achievements over the past four-and-a-half seasons.

Big goals and outstanding moments of quality, all backed up by the ultimate aim, which is to be part of a successful, trophy-winning team.

Fabregas, who scored 22 goals for the club in total, departs having helped the club achieve great success, as well as providing our supporters with some wonderful memories.

He leaves with the very best wishes of everybody at Chelsea Football Club.

Gracias, Cesc!

 



Reunited and it feels so good…

 

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Friday January 11 transfer news and rumours

Fulham have rejected a £50m bid for star striker Aleksandar Mitrovic from an unnamed Chinese club, reports The Sun.

Bayern Munich hope to beat Barcelona for the signature of Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Adrien Rabiot, according to The Sun.

Crystal Palace and Fulham have been put on alert after Michy Batshuayi‘s loan spell at Valencia was cut short, according to The Mirror.

The Daily Telegraph reports Chelsea have rejected Barcelona’s offer to swap Willian for Malcom plus cash.

England winger Jadon Sancho wants to stay at Borussia Dortmund despite reports linking him with a Premier League move, reports The Mail.

Tottenham want to sign Hoffenheim and Austria midfielder Florian Grillitsch, according to Sky Sports.

Thursday January 10 transfer news and rumours

West Ham face a battle to keep hold of star striker Marko Arnautovic after his brother and agent declared he ‘wants to go’ amid talk of a lucrative offer from an unknown Chinese Super League club.

Gonzalo Higuain’s agent is in London with Chelsea keen to buy the striker.

Standard Sport understands that Nicolas Higuain, the forward’s brother, arrived on Thursday morning and is expected to meet with Chelsea officials to sound out their interest.

Meanwhile, contrary to reports, we understand that Aaron Ramsey has not yet agreed to join Juventus with his agent due to speak with other clubs.

The Serie A side are in pole position to secure the services of the Arsenal star this summer, but Inter Milan, AC Milan, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain are also interested.

Elsewhere, Barcelona could sell Philippe Coutinho to fund deal to bring Neymar back to Camp Nou.

Wednesday January 9 transfer news and rumours

Chelsea want to sign Andre Silva but any deal hinges on Alvaro Morata replacing the striker at Sevilla, reports The Sun. 

Ander Herrera is set to sign a new deal for Manchester United after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer convinced him to stay, according to The Sun. 

Arsenal have asked about Chelsea target Nicolo Barella and could make a late bid to hijack the deal, reports The Daily Mail.

The Sun reports Inter Milan are planning a summer swoop for Luka Modric and could sell Ivan Perisic to Manchester United to help raise funds. 

Real Madrid want either Christian Eriksen or Eden Hazard to be their new playmaker as they plan an overhaul of the squad this summer, reports The Independent. 

Tuesday January 8 transfer news and rumours

Standard Sport understands that Chelsea have put Cesc Fabregas’ proposed move to Monaco on hold until they can bring in a replacement for the Spaniard.

The Blues have identified two possible replacements in Cagliari star Nicolo Barrera and Zenit St Petersburg’s Leandro Paredes and will not sanction Fabregas’ move to Ligue 1 until one of those deals is agreed. 

Sevilla meanwhile are interested in signing Chelsea’s Alvaro Morata on loan. 

According to AS, Morata’s agent Juanma Lopez has travelled to the Andalusian city to hold talks with Sevilla director of football Joaquin Caparros over the possibility of a loan move.

Real Betis meanwhile are interested in signing West Ham striker Lucas Perez on loan. The Hammers could still hold onto the former Arsenal man until the end of the season if they are unable to bring in a replacement.

Arsenal are exploring the possibility of making former midfielder Edu the club’s new director of football.

The Gunners are keen to add further expertise to their first-team operations as part of a restructuring which began when Arsene Wenger was in charge and continued this season with chief executive Ivan Gazidis’s departure to AC Milan.

Athletic Bilbao sporting director Rafa Alkorta has told Cadena Ser the club are eager to re-sign Man Utd midfielder Ander Herrera and Tottenham striker Fernando Llorente. 

Elsewhere, Tottenham midfielder Mousa Dembele is nearing a move to China.

Monday January 7 transfer news and rumours

Barcelona are reluctant to let Arsenal target Denis Suarez leave on loan this month ahead of a proposed permanent move in the summer, according to the Mirror. 

Lazio have had a £13million bid for Chelsea full-back Davide Zappacosta accepted, according to The Sun.

Chelsea want £10million for Cesc Fabregas as the midfielder flies south for talks following his farewell performance at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, report the Mirror. 

Manchester United face a battle with Liverpool and Real Madrid for Porto right-back Eder Militao, according to The Sun. 

Meanwhile, The Sun reports Fulham goalkeeper Fabri is set to return to Besiktas just six months after leaving the club to move to west London.

And Frank Lampard has given up hope of signing Chelsea teenager Ethan Ampadu on loan.

Sunday January 6 transfer news and rumours

Chelsea will make a £50m bid to try and sign PSG striker Edinson Cavani to solve their woes up front.

The Sunday Express report Maurizio Sarri wants the Uruguay international to lead his attack with Alvaro Morata and Olivier Giroud failing to fulfil that role under the Italian.

Arsenal meanwhile have opened talks with Barcelona over a move for Spanish midfielder Denis SuarezThe Guardian claim the Spaniard is available for around £20m with Unai Emery keen to bring in a player he has previously worked with at Sevilla.

Fulham will offer £15m for Liverpool forward Divock Origi to help their Premier League survival bid, according to the Mirror.

But after offloading Dominic Solanke to Bournemouth, Jurgen Klopp may be wary of letting another backup forward leave the club ahead of their title run in.

Saturday January 5 transfer news and rumours

Chelsea are said to be close to sealing a complicated loan agreement which will bring Gonzalo Higuain to Stamford Bridge.

Sky Sports say Tottenham and Man City are on alert after young Sunderland striker Josh Maja rejected a new contract with the Black Cats.

Meanwhile, West Ham’s Reece Oxford is said to be holding out for a move to Arsenal and will reject an offer to return to Borussia Monchengladbach this month, according to the Mirror.

Friday January 4 transfer news and rumours

Arsenal are today linked with a Serie A star, with manager Unai Emery wanting to sign Torino defender Nicolas N’Koulou, according to reports in Italy.

Chelsea have until January 14 to recall Tammy Abraham from his loan spell at Aston Villa, according to the Guardian. 

The terms of the deal mean the Blues can cut short his season-long stint at Villa Park if they trigger a recall option in the first two weeks of the window. 

Tottenham have activated an extension clause in Toby Alderweireld’s contract which will keep him at the club till 2020, but also includes that infamous £25million transfer clause.

Chelsea have decided against a January move for Gonzalo Higuain, who is on loan at AC Milan from Juventus, according to Goal. 

Meanwhile, Crystal Palace midfielder Jason Puncheon is today on the verge of joining Huddersfield while Jonny Williams have completed a move to Charlton Athletic. 

Thursday January 3 transfer news and rumours

Manchester United will only spend big in January if the opportunity to sign a leading centre-back arises, reports The Independent. 

Thierry Henry’s Monaco have identified Crystal Palace defender Mamadou Sakho as a priority target but the Eagles have not intention of letting him leave, according to The Mail. 

Chelsea are adamant the signing of Christian Pulisic from Borussia Dortmund is not related to Eden Hazard’s contract situation. The Blues are still determined to agree a new deal with the Belgium international, according to The Sun. 

Meanwhile, The Sun reports Huddersfield  are set to complete a loan deal for Crystal Palace midfielder Jason Puncheon until the end of the season.

Sport in Spain say Arsenal have made a £14m offer to sign Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas, who hinted at his imminent departure on social media on Wednesday. 



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