The January transfer window may seem like a distant memory, but that doesn’t mean the rumour mill has shut down! Speculation over summer moves is heating up so check out the latest gossip below, and see all official deals here.
TOP STORY: Mbappe wants exit clauses in new PSG deal
With Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe‘s contract coming to an end in 2022, there has been plenty of talk around whether he will sign an extension.
Mbappe, who scored a hat trick in last week’s Champions League first leg win at Barcelona, said he is “happy” at PSG but that it would be “stupid to decide my future on a single match.”
But according to Foot Mercato, PSG would have to put in certain demands in Mbappe’s new contract if they want to keep him.
It is suggested the Frenchman wants to be near or equal to teammate Neymar‘s monthly wage of €3 million, while the striker also wants a clause that will allow him to leave if certain clubs come knocking.
Among the clubs that have been linked with Mbappe include Real Madrid and Liverpool.
22.00 GMT: That will do it for the latest edition of our LIVE Transfer Talk blog. We hoped you enjoyed following along with us and remind you to check back shortly for the latest transfer rumours, reports and completed deals. Goodnight!
21.21 GMT: Aston Villa are favourites to land Sheffield United star Sander Berge, claims Eurosport.
With Sheffield almost guaranteed to be relegated, the Norwegian is expected to be available come the summer. Signed from Genk for £22 million in Jan. 2020, Berge has emerged as one of the top players for the Blades, despite the club’s struggles this season.
Expected to return in March after a long injury lay-off, Berge will be auditioning for his next club with Vill and Arsenal reportedly two of the leaders for his signature.
20.38 GMT: Toronto FC have signed stalwart defender Justin Morrow to a new deal.
“Justin has been a fixture with TFC and it’s great to have him signed,” said Toronto FC General Manager Ali Curtis. “His versatility on the field, veteran presence in the locker room and overall leadership on and off the field have been critical for the club for a long time and we’re thrilled that will continue.”
The 33-year-old will be entering his eighth season with the Reds, and was a key member of the TFC side that won MLS Cup in 2017. Morrow, who has made 229 appearances for the club, ranks second in all-time TFC appearances and has amassed 17 goals and 19 assists for the club.
19.49 GMT: Brighton have been impressed with Alex MacAllister since he finally the club in Jan. 2020 and the club are reportedly keen to sign him to a new contract.
After signing with Brighton in 2019, MacAllister initially spent time on loan in his native Argentina with Argentinos Juniors and Boca Juniors. His recent performances for the Seagulls have the caught eye and the Sun writes that Brighton want to sign the youngster to a new deal, like the club already did with fellow youngster Tariq Lamptey.
18.51 GMT: What’s next for Borussia Dortmund superstar Erling Haaland?
With all the world’s biggest clubs chasing the 20-year-old sensation, the player’s agent Mino Raiola has stated that only four Premier League clubs have a chance at signing the striker.
“He will be one of the future stars for the next decade – because we see people like (Zlatan) Ibrahimovich, Cristiano Ronaldo and (Lionel) Messi coming to a certain age. How long can we still enjoy them?
“So everyone is looking for the new generation and it’s obvious there are only a maximum of 10 clubs that can afford to buy him.
“We can fill in four of those clubs – and four of those clubs are in England. You can call them and say ‘would you be interested?’
Haaland, who has 27 goals in 25 games this season, will have a £70 million release clause activated in June 2022, so forward-thinking Dortmund could elect to sell him this summer in order to receive maximum value.
18.02 GMT: NWSL side OL Reign have signed England goalkeeper Karen Bardsley on loan from Manchester City.
OL Reign have signed England international goalkeeper @klbardsley on loan from Man City.
— OL Reign (@OLReign) February 23, 2021
“I am really excited to be joining OL Reign over this period and very grateful to Man City for allowing me the opportunity to experience a new environment to get more game time and progress my learning and development,” said Bardsley. “I’ve been very impressed with the whole approach and attitude of everyone at OL Reign and I can’t wait to meet up with the squad and coaches. NWSL is such a competitive league, and I’m determined to do all I can to help the Club get the season off to a winning start.”
The 36-year-old, who was born in Santa Monica, California, has amassed 81 caps for England and has won a league title (2016) and three FA Cups (2017, 2019, 2020) with Man City.
17.18 GMT: What’s next for Man City’s Fernandinho?
The 35-year-old defensive midfielder, who has been at the club since 2013, is in the final year of his contract with City and faces an uncertain future. While some reports indicate he has been offered a coaching role at the club, the Brazilian denies that claim and maintains his future is undecided.
“At the moment, I am focused only on Manchester City, as I know how much my teammates need me,” he told TNT Sports.
“I made the decision to only define my future when the season is over. I already received an offer, not to be from Pep (Guardiola), but an employee of the club,” he said.
16.26 GMT: Serie A giants Juventus and Inter Milan are both interested in signing Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero this summer, The Sun reports.
Aguero’s contract with City expires at the end of the season, and so far no talks have taken place over a new deal for the club’s all-time record goal scorer.
The 32-year-old has not started a game for City since October as he has been suffering from a recurring knee injury, but in his absence City have risen to the top of the Premier League table.
The Sun reports that Aguero has already spoken with Barcelona and Atletico Madrid about potentially joining them as a free agent this summer, but his preferred option would be to remain at City, where he has been since 2011 when he signed from Atletico.
15.39 GMT: RB Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann is at the top of the list of Tottenham’s targets to replace Jose Mourinho if the Portuguese coach cannot turn around the team’s poor run of results, the Daily Telegraph reports.
The report was published on Tuesday morning, and later the same day Mourinho vowed he “will be in Tottenham’s history for the good reasons” after claiming he is “more motivated than ever” to halt the club’s slide amid growing speculation over his future.
ESPN reported on Friday that chairman Daniel Levy wants to wait until the end of the season before deciding whether the 58-year-old should continue as head coach, but Mourinho must first address a run of five defeats from six Premier League games that leaves their top four hopes hanging by a thread.
Spurs are strong favourites to progress in the Europa League as they lead Wolfsberger 4-1 heading into tomorrow’s last-32, second-leg tie in north London and have an EFL Cup Final to come against Manchester City in April.
However, Spurs’ dreadful League form has ramped up the pressure on Mourinho, who insists he is better equipped to handle the situation than he was when arriving in England for the first time to take charge of Chelsea in 2004.
“As you know, I didn’t have many bad runs of results,” he told a news conference. “But day-by-day problems that happen many times in clubs with all of us, I reacted previously in a much more emotional way. And instead of helping myself and the ones around me, I was even created kind of conflict situations that I had previously. To give you a quick example: I left Chelsea as a champion. I was champion and I left Chelsea.
“Maybe your age, your experience as a person and a journalist makes you realise that people with more experience, we are better equipped to cope with negative moments. I am calm. I am in control of my emotions. I cannot switch on and switch off I’m happy.
“My nature does not change. I lose a game, of course I am not happy but maturity helps. And I feel very confident. I believe we are going to improve and I believe that I will be in Tottenham’s history for the good reasons and not for the bad reasons.”
14.44 GMT: Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has said he has no concerns about the long-term futures of top scorer Luis Suarez or coach Diego Simeone.
Reports have suggested Suarez has a clause in his contract that would allow him to leave this summer, midway through his two-year deal.
“Why wouldn’t he carry on?” Cerezo told Cadena COPE ahead of Atletico’s Champions League match with Chelsea in Bucharest. “Players play where they want to. We trust him and he trusts us. He has a year’s contract left, and he can fulfil it or not. We have to stay calm.”
Simeone — who has led Atletico to the top of the La Liga table this season, favourites to land the title for the first time since 2014 — has a deal until 2022 which makes him the highest-paid coach in world football.
“He has a contract and there’s no reason to renew, or not to renew,” Cerezo said. “You get paid what you deserve.”
– Suarez tells ESPN: ‘No one will get rid of me’ until I’m ready
13.43 GMT: Favourites to regain the Premier League title this season, Manchester City have hit a rich vein of form with a record 18 wins in a row, yet one area where they have not been as dominant as in recent years is in front of goal. They’ve averaged above 2.5 goals per game in each of the past three league campaigns, yet this season it’s down to 2.0.
One reason is the frequent absence of the club’s record goal scorer, Sergio Aguero. But with the injury-hit Argentina international yet to sign a new contract, despite it expiring in the summer, and with Gabriel Jesus less than convincing as a replacement, having scored just four league goals in 17 appearances, the signs are that City may look to land a new striker in the next transfer window.
With the caveat that Barcelona’s Lionel Messi is too old (at 34) and most likely too expensive (in terms of wage demands) to make a long-term impact at City, here are five star forwards that could help City back to their free-scoring ways.
– Karlsen: Kane, Haaland, Mbappe? Who should replace Aguero at City?
13.19 GMT: Jesse Lingard‘s loan deal at West Ham from Manchester United does not include any clause allowing the Hammers to sign him permanently in the summer, The Times reports.
Lingard has revitalised his career since joining West Ham last month, with his winner in Sunday’s 2-1 derby victory over Tottenham his third goal in four Premier League appearances for David Moyes’ side.
The 28-year-old appeared to have no future at Old Trafford, with all three of his appearances for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side coming in cup competitions. But the lack of a clause in his loan deal opens the door for Lingard to return to his boyhood club in the summer and earn a place back in the team.
– ‘Backstreet Moyes!’ Lingard’s musical goal celebration explained
12.34 GMT: Juventus director Fabio Paratici has assured supporters they are in discussion with Paulo Dybala over an extension to his contract.
The Argentina international enjoyed an impressive 2019-20 campaign under Maurizio Sarri as he won the Serie A MVP award but injuries have limited him to just 16 appearances in all competitions so far this campaign.
“Paulo still has a few problems — it’s like he’s on a swing,” Paratici said following Monday’s 3-0 league win over Crotone (stream the replay on ESPN+ in the U.S.). “Some days he’s better and others he’s worse.
“He seemed OK on Wednesday, then he felt some pain again. We have spoken [about this contract], we have been speaking and will continue to speak in the next few days and months.”
11.57 GMT: Brazilian club Sao Paulo are the latest side joining the race to sign Diego Costa, according to Sky Sports.
Costa, 32, is a free agent after having his contract at Atletico Madrid cancelled by mutual agreement in January.
Sky reports that the former Chelsea striker has already been in talks with Sao Paulo’s local rivals Palmeiras, while he also turned down an offer of an 18-month deal from Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr.
11.12 GMT: Barcelona have intensified their interest in Real Sociedad’s Alexander Isak as they look to bring in a new striker this summer, sources have told ESPN’s Sam Marsden and Moises Llorens.
Martin Braithwaite has been Barca’s only No. 9 since September, when they sold Luis Suarez to Atletico Madrid in a deal that could be worth up to €11m.
Financial restraints and the lack of a president have prevented a replacement coming in so far, despite coach Ronald Koeman’s pleas for Lyon’s Memphis Depay, but the club hope it will be possible to turn to the transfer market at the end of the season. There’s an awareness at Barca that bringing in a new forward will be a priority for whoever is elected as the club’s new president on March 7.
Isak, 21, is a player who has been on the club’s radar for a while and his performances since moving to Spain in 2019 have impressed Barca scouts, who believe similarities between Real Sociedad and Barca’s playing styles would ease his adaption.
The Sweden international has built on an impressive debut season with La Real, which included a brace against Real Madrid, by scoring 12 goals in 20 La Liga appearances this term. He has a contract until 2024 in San Sebastian and his release clause is €70m, although Borussia Dortmund have a buy-back option worth €30m, with Cadena Ser reporting they could look to use that if they sell Erling Haaland.
10.03 GMT: Toni Kroos has said former teammate David Alaba “definitely has the quality to play for Real Madrid” after being a stalwart at Bayern Munich, but warned quality isn’t enough to succeed at the Bernabeu.
Sources told ESPN’s James Olley earlier this month that Madrid are favourites to land Alaba on a free transfer when he leaves Bayern this summer, as the versatile defender seeks a new challenge after 13 years at the club.
“I haven’t played with him for almost seven years, so it’s a little difficult for me to say what he thinks,” Kroos, who left Bayern for Madrid in 2014, told Sky. “If you’re a regular at Bayern, then you definitely have the quality to play for Real Madrid.
Kroos sounded a note of caution, though, by adding: “You need more than just sporting quality. A lot of players have been here who brought quality with them. You need to be physically there, and your head to be able to deal with many situations.”
09.17 GMT: Juventus’ veteran goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has not ruled out playing for another season.
Buffon, who turned 43 last month, made a record 654th Serie A appearance in Monday’s 3-0 league win over Crotone (stream the replay on ESPN+ in the U.S.).
“The most important thing is that I arrive to this number not crawling but jumping,” he said. “This is the biggest satisfaction and the biggest pride. It’s the way in which you arrive to do things that makes the difference.
“Do I want to continue? I measure the width and height of my jumps every week: as long as I see that they go well, I will continue. As soon as I see that they go wrong I will be the first to stop.”
08.30 GMT: Matt Doherty‘s future at Tottenham is uncertain with manager Jose Mourinho harbouring doubts over the defender’s ability to be a success at the club, sources have told ESPN.
Spurs signed the 29-year-old from Wolves for a fee in the region of £15 million in August but Mourinho is considering making the right-back available for transfer this summer unless his form improves.
PSG revive Bellerin interest
There has been plenty of talk around a possible departure for the Spanish right-back, having previously been linked with a return to Barcelona.
The Catalans had a $35m offer rejected at the start of the season, but now PSG — as well as several Serie A teams — are now eyeing the player.
Bellerin is apparently keen on a move to a club where he can immediately compete for silverware, instead of being a part of Mikel Arteta’s rebuilding project at the Emirates.
Juve ask for new Morata loan
The outlet has indicated that the Italian giants are willing to pay €10m to keep the Spaniard for another season.
There is an option for them to permanently sign the striker for €45m during the summer, but they are now unable to afford that due to the financial implications of the coronavirus pandemic.
In an effort to resolve the situation, Juve are hoping they can pay the initial €10m before signing the 28-year-old for €35m in 2022.
– Borussia Dortmund are in the market for new centre-backs with Sky Sports Deutschland reporting that Fiorentina’s Nikola Milenkovic is one of the club’s top candidates. Another choice for the German side is Cagliari’s Sebastian Walukiewicz, who the Italian club will allow to leave for financial reasons. The report suggests that Dortmund have already come to an agreement to sign 17-year-old Soumaila Coulibaly from PSG.
– Napoli are showing an interest in signing Benfica left-back Nuno Tavares, as has been reported by Calciomercato. The 21-year-old has played a total of 35 first-team games for Benfica, and it seems he has done enough to catch the Serie A club’s attention.