Transfer Talk: Man City to approach again for Ajax’s Tagliafico
The coronavirus pandemic made the transfer market unlike any before it, but there was still plenty of action on Deadline Day. With the window closed across the major leagues in Europe, you can check out the latest major completed transfers across the globe.
TOP STORY: Real Madrid eye Haaland if Mbappe move fails
Erling Haaland is back on the front page of Marca, with claims Real Madrid are likely to move for the Borussia Dortmund striker next summer if it proves too difficult to sign Kylian Mbappe from Paris Saint-Germain.
The newspaper reports that “Madrid haven’t lost sight of the Norwegian’s progression” — having scored 11 goals already this season for club and country — and “it’s a more straightforward, affordable operation” although Mbappe, whose PSG contract expires in 2022, remains their No. 1 attacking target despite his €150m-plus pricetag.
Marca cites Madrid’s excellent relationship with Borussia Dortmund, demonstrated by the recent loans of Achraf Hakimi and Reinier Jesus, as giving them the edge over any potential rivals for Haaland’s signature.
Sources told ESPN in April that Manchester United would be interested in Haaland if the striker leaves Borussia Dortmund. United have been trying to sign €120m-rated Dortmund forward Jadon Sancho, but a reported €75m release clause in Haaland’s contract makes him more affordable.
09.28 BST: Thomas Partey‘s father Jacob has said the family were hoping the midfielder would leave Atletico Madrid on deadline day — and he advised his son to join Arsenal, despite their lack of Champions League football.
“We actually weren’t disturbed by anything (on deadline day) because we hoped a bigger team will come for Partey,” he told Ghana’s Joy News. “We were aware of the [other teams that were interested]: Juventus, Chelsea and so forth.”
“He was willing to play where there is Champions League [football] but [suggested] can’t he be where there is no Champions League and help them get into the Champions League?” he added. “My advice to him was irrespective of the big move, he has to keep training seriously and not lose focus. Not chase ladies so he doesn’t flop!”
It’s not the first time Jacob Partey has been vocal about his son’s career, getting into hot water in April when Thomas’ agent was forced to deny his claims that talks with Arsenal were underway.
08.57 BST: La Liga president Javier Tebas is hopeful that Barcelona captain Lionel Messi will continue playing in Spain beyond June 2021, when his contract expires.
Messi, 33, had wanted to leave Barca in August after growing increasingly unhappy at how the club was being managed but was forced to make a U-turn when the Catalan giants demanded his €700m release clause.
“Messi? I hope he will always stay in La Liga,” Tebas added. “I don’t know if from a personal standpoint he is better off leaving, certainly on the professional side he could earn even more, but considering how well he feels in Barcelona.”
La Liga lost Cristiano Ronaldo two years ago when the Portugal forward left Real Madrid to sign for Juventus in a €100m transfer while in the summer of 2017, Neymar left Barcelona to join Paris Saint-Germain in a world record €222m transfer.
“Cristiano Ronaldo left two years ago but we didn’t notice from an economic point of view,” Tebas told Gazzetta dello Sport. “And we have always been preparing for the release of our best talents, for the generational change.
“It has already happened with Neymar and with Cristiano. We have signed contracts already for the next four years and no one has complained if Ney or Ronaldo left, they didn’t ask for their money back.
“On the contrary, we have grown in the sale of rights. Because there are other factors that matter, besides the names of the players. We have such stability that we continue calmly on our path.”
08.24 BST: Bayern Munich sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has said there will be “no ultimatum” for defender David Alaba whose current deal is set to expire in 2021.
Talks between Bayern and Alaba have stalled and the Austria defender, 28, has been linked with a free transfer to Juventus or one of the two Spanish giants, Barcelona and Real Madrid.
“David is our player, and he’s been at the club for 12 years. We will not set David an ultimatum, we will not play any games there,” Salihamidzic told reporters on Monday.
“We all know what we have in David and we try to convince him. We’d be delighted if he were to stay in Munich and are hoping for his signature.”
08.00 BST: A number of Manchester United players have expressed their disappointment at the treatment of goalkeeper Sergio Romero, sources have told ESPN’s Rob Dawson.
Romero has fallen down the pecking order at Old Trafford after the return of Dean Henderson but was priced out of a move away on deadline day because of United’s insistence on a fee of around £10m.
The 33-year-old, a popular member of the squad, is set to return to Manchester after a break in Argentina but is likely to find no prospect of first team football until at least January while No.1 David De Gea and Henderson share duties in the Premier League, Champions League and Carabao Cup.
It comes just months after manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer surprised the United dressing room by omitting Romero from the FA Cup semifinal against Chelsea and Europa League semifinal against Sevilla last season, despite picking the Argentina international for the majority of games in both competitions until that point.
Romero has also been left out of this Champions League squad after Solskjaer chose 37-year-old Lee Grant as the third goalkeeper in the list submitted to UEFA. It has led members of United’s dressing room to express their sympathy with Romero’s situation with many to feel he has been unfairly frozen out after five years of service.
Everton were keen to sign Romero on deadline day but were unwilling to match United’s asking price and instead opted for Sweden international Robin Olsen on a season-long loan deal from AS Roma to provide competition for first-choice Jordan Pickford.
ESPN FC’s Ian Darke and Don Hutchison react to a busy month ahead for Liverpool in the Prem and UCL.
PAPER TALK (by Danny Lewis)
Man City to return for Tagliafico
Ajax’s asking price of £35m for Tagliafico, as well as City’s inability to sell Oleksandr Zinchenko, are said to be among the reasons they didn’t complete a deal in the recent transfer window.
However, they have not completely given up on signing the Argentina international and it has been suggested that the Premier League side could get him for £20m this next round.
Roma reignite interest in Milik
They had initially wanted to wait until next summer, when they would have been able to get the striker for free. However, with the two clubs actually having made a deal, it could be implemented when the next window comes around.
West Ham switch attention from Benrahma to King
It had been widely reported that West Ham United were closing in on a deal for Brentford winger Said Benrahma, but now it seems the Hammers are now turning their attention to Bournemouth forward Joshua King.
The Mirror is now claiming that the deal for Benrahma is in danger of falling through, despite a medical having been set up for Wednesday, ahead of the domestic window deadline on Oct. 15.
The 25-year-old is reported to have now fallen out with Brentford over “broken promises” that had been made to him.
– Juan Mata turned down a huge offer from Saudi Arabia to stay at Manchester United, reports Sport. An unnamed club reportedly offered the Spaniard £20m per year in wages, which he turned down despite having just one year left on his contract at Old Trafford. His reasoning is that he believes he can still win trophies and achieve success with United.
— Brighton & Hove Albion and West Bromwich Albion are both set to make late attempts to sign Swansea City forward Andre Ayew. It is suggested that there are other clubs who are also eyeing the Ghana international, with Steve Cooper now facing an anxious wait to see if the Swans can keep him. Ayew’s Premier League experience, gained with Swansea and West Ham, is reportedly one of the reasons behind the interest.