Alexis Sanchez to Man United? Mourinho aims to gazump Guardiola
The transfer window is heating up! Transfer Talk brings you live updates on all the latest rumours and done deals. Check out all the confirmed January moves so far on our transfers page.
TOP STORY: United to beat City to Sanchez?
This is a huge development. Respected transfers specialist Gianluca Di Marzio has dropped a massive story, suggesting Manchester United are in the running to sign Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal.
It was long thought that Sanchez was on his way to be reunited with Pep Guardiola at Manchester City but Jose Mourinho would love nothing more than to get one over his big rival.
Di Marzio says Mourinho may even have a trump card: Henrikh Mkhitaryan. The Armenian is apparently admired by Wenger having fallen out of favour at Old Trafford. Mkhitaryan plus cash for Sanchez? It would be quite the story.
However, the Independent reports that United could use Mkhitaryan as a makeweight in a deal for 19-year-old U.S. international Christian Pulisic, who's expected to be at the centre of a bidding war between the Manchester club and former Dortmund boss Jugen Klopp's Liverpool this summer.
23.00 GMT: That's going to do it for Thursday's live edition of Transfer Talk. Thanks very much for joining us, and be sure to check back in a few short hours when we return with all the latest gossip pulled from Friday morning's back pages.
22.37 GMT: The New England Revolution have completed the signing of French midfielder Wilfried Zahibo after Spanish second-division side Gimnastic terminated the 24-year-old's contract earlier this week. Read the full story.
22.15 GMT: Major League Soccer free-agent defender Steven Beitashour has left reigning MLS Cup champion Toronto FC to sign with expansion side LAFC, according to Canadian outlet Sportsnet.
21.52 GMT: New York City FC have completed the singing of Benin international center-back Cedric Hountondji. Read the full story.
21.29 GMT: Everton are weighing up recalling Brendan Galloway from his loan at Sunderland, where the 21-year-old defender has made just 10 appearances this season, according to the Liverpool Echo.
21.06 GMT: Leicester City manager Claude Puel has confirmed the Foxes are close to the signing of Fousseni Diabate from French Ligue 2 club Gazelec Ajaccio. They have agreed a fee of around £2 million for the 22-year-old, who can play either as a striker or a winger. Read the full story."He's an interesting player for the future and will be between the Under-23 and Premier League squad -- he has quality to play in Premier League. He's a young player but has all the attributes to become a good player."
20.43 GMT: Less than a year after signing for Chinese Super League side Changchun Yatai from Watford, Odion Ighalo is open to a Premier League return, and Sky Sports reports that two unnamed clubs in England's top flight have reached out to the Nigeria international.
20.20 GMT: FC Dallas technical director Fernando Clavijo said he would be open to using the top spot in the MLS allocation order to bring back former FCD and current Trabzonspor midfielder Fabian Castillo. Read the full story.
19.57 GMT: Serie A outfit Torino are interested in 25-year-old Everton midfielder Muhamed Besic, who's made just eight appearances for the Toffees this season, according to Sky Sports.
19.33 GMT: Riyad Mahrez is in discussions with Liverpool over a move to Anfield, the Express writes, but the Algerian would prefer a transfer to Arsenal, who he is not currently in negotiations with.
19.10 GMT: Javier Pastore has refuted Paris Saint-Germain captain Thiago Silva's claims that the Argentine wants to leave the club, and reiterated his desire to be the last Oryx Qatar Sports Investments (QSI) signing "to leave" the Parc des Princes. Read the full story.
18.47 GMT: Club America is interested in bringing Villarreal forward and Cololmbia international Carlos Bacca to Mexico City, ESPN Mexico reports.
18.24 GMT: Gremio midfielder Arthur looked certain to join Barcelona in January, until photos emerged of the 21-year-old posing in a Blaugrana shirt with club officials. After that, the Brazilian side demanded his £45m buyout clause be met, and Barcelona never parted with the cash.
Now, according to the Mail, Gremio are interested in negotiating a £30m deal with Chelsea and Manchester United both interested in a player who's expected to make Brazil's World Cup squad.
18.01 GMT: Manchester United have moved ahead of Manchester City in the chase for Borussia Dortmund midfielder Julian Weigl, according to the Independent, in part because of the German giants' interest in bringing United's Henrikh Mkhitaryan back to the Westfalenstadion.
17.38 GMT: As contract talks between Torino and Italy international forward Andrea Belotti stall, Tuttosport reports that Manchester United and AC Milan could pounce for the 24-year-old.
17.15 GMT: Swansea coach Carlos Carvalhal has said that the Welsh club have no plans to sell centre-back Alfie Mawson despite interest from West Ham and Watford.
"When I signed it was very clear we are trying to bring in players to improve the team and we will not sell the best players in January," the BBC quotes Carvalhal as saying.
"Guarantees can change all the time. If someone gives £50 million or £150 million or £260 million of course its completely different ... We never can say that will not happen.
"But the fundamental idea is not to sell the players and try to improve the team."
16:33 GMT: Along with Lucas Moura, Paris Saint-Germain star Javier Pastore has been heavily linked with an exit this month -- but he wants to stay put. "I repeat, my dream has always been to be the last (QSI signing) to leave. I have always been loyal. It is not true that I want to leave! I would like to finish my career here," he said.
16:31 GMT: The Benfica boss is keeping calm ...
Benfica boss Rui Vitória on the transfer window: "We won't be doing anything just because someone tells us to or because our rivals are hiring[reinforcements]. We'll only make signings if we are certain the player can add something to the team." pic.twitter.com/vvBauvMQJm— Jan Hagen (@PortuBall) January 11, 2018
16:28 GMT: He's featured in Transfer Talk a fair bit recently and it appears a deal is close. Crystal Palace are closing in on the signing of Getafe goalkeeper Vicente Guaita ahead of Watford. The player's agent is in UK now to sort it all out, sources close to Palace have told ESPN FC.
16:22 GMT: Manchester City winger Isaac Buckley-Ricketts will join League One Oxford United on loan, sources have told ESPN FC.
15:40 GMT: Not content with only gazumping Manchester City for Alexis Sanchez, Jose Mourinho is reportedly ready to rival Pep Guardiola for Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred. There's a lot of rumours surrounding United today, but can Mourinho get any of these potential deals done?
15:27 GMT: Mauricio Pellegrino has warned Southampton fans to be patient as he tries to land Theo Walcott. "We know Walcott is a very good player but now it is not my concern to talk about players not in the club. The fans have to be patient, everyone at the club wants people to help us to be stronger, especially as Charlie Austin is out for a long period," he said.
15:19 GMT: Here's the full story on Valencia signing Francis Coquelin from Arsenal.
15:16 GMT: What a day it has been on Transfer Talk. Now this from Monaco manager Leonardo Jardim, speaking about Thomas Lemar in a news conference: "You know how crazy the transfer window is ... a club like Monaco cannot say no." That'll be music to the ears of Arsenal and Liverpool fans.
15:04 GMT: We have a DONE DEAL folks: Francis Coquelin has left Arsenal and joined Valencia. He has an €80m release clause ...
Amunt Valencia! 👍 pic.twitter.com/rWHzk9twgu— Valencia CF (@valenciacf) January 11, 2018
14:58 GMT: It's almost a year since Borussia Dortmund signed rising star Alexander Isak. His move from AIK Solna hasn't worked out as planned, though, and he's yet to even start for the club in the Bundesliga. Could a move to Mainz get the 18-year-old striker back on track?
14:56 GMT: Our man in Spain Sam Marsden has the inside track on Barcelona's bargaining position (hint: it's weak) as they look to flog some players this month.
14:50 GMT: Swindon boss David Flitcroft says he wants to make Keshi Anderson's loan move from Crystal Palace a permanent one ...
DF 🗣️ | "We want to make Keshi Anderson a permanent deal, and so do @CPFC. I see a potential asset to the football club when he gets regular goals and regular assists."— Swindon Town FC (@Official_STFC) 11 January 2018
14:47 GMT: How about this for a clear out? The Sun reckon West Ham are up for selling all FOUR of their strikers: Andy Carroll, Javier Hernandez, Andre Ayew and Diafra Sakho. So who has David Moyes got lined up?
14:31 GMT: Done deal!
14:10 GMT: Here's Mark Lovell with the full story on Liverpool's attempts to bring forward Naby Keita's move from RB Leipzig.
14:09 GMT: A quick update from earlier: sources have told ESPN FC that Diafra Sakho's move from West Ham to Crystal Palace is now OFF.
13:55 GMT: West Ham striker Javier Hernandez has been linked with a move to new Major League Soccer outfit LAFC but sources in the U.S. have told ESPN FC that they are happy with their options in attack.
13:48 GMT: Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic has this to say on the future of left-back Ryan Sessegnon, who is on Manchester United and Tottenham's radar:
13:14 GMT: Spanish football expert Guillem Balague has his say on today's massive rumour.
On Sanchez. After both Manchester clubs made offer, all up to Arsenal and player. Right now, City don't want to offer more than £20 and are convinced player wants to be with Pep, so will wait to the summer otherwise. Risky strategy if United offer huge figures to both club/player pic.twitter.com/3MnMF9GBO6— Guillem Balague (@GuillemBalague) January 11, 2018
13:12 GMT: The rumours just keep on coming. It says here Manchester United are interested in signing Borussia Dortmund midfielder Julian Weigl this month. Jose Mourinho wants to bolster his squad but can he get that deal done?
13:08 GMT: This is a busy lunchtime. Huddersfield boss David Wagner confirms our news from earlier that Alex Pritchard is heading to the Terriers ...
13:06 GMT: Well, it's a signing of some description at least? Chelsea have appointed Guy Laurence as their new chief executive.
Chelsea Football Club today announces the appointment of Guy Laurence as our new Chief Executive... https://t.co/vp8pjKc5pt— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) January 11, 2018
13:03 GMT: Our man in Germany Mark Lovell has some bad news for Liverpool fans regarding Naby Keita:
Leipzig coach Ralph Hasenhüttl plays spoilsport on Naby Keita speculation : "There's no reason to allow Keita leave early and that's the way it is staying."— Mark Lovell #FBPE (@LovellLowdown) January 11, 2018
12:59 GMT: Alexis Sanchez! To Manchester United! Transfer Talk's head is still in a spin. Surely this will just hurry Pep Guardiola up and force him to close the deal?
12:52 GMT: Lots of reports are springing up about Jose Mourinho's move for Alexis Sanchez (that sentence will always look weird). The Daily Mail reckon United can better the terms offered by Manchester City.
12:43 GMT: Come on then, pick one:
12:32 GMT: This is what the transfer window is all about. The Guardian are now running the Alexis Sanchez to Manchester United (!) line, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan supposedly going the other way. What. A. Story.
12:18 GMT: CAN YOU IMAGINE THIS.
12:04 GMT: Frozen out of Arsenal and seemingly heading towards the exit door, Theo Walcott has come up on Everton's radar. A £20m deal has been mooted by The Telegraph.
11:59 GMT: After Philippe Coutinho's big move to Barcelona, there's been talk Liverpool could try and bring forward the Naby Keita deal this month. He's set to join in the summer for around £54m but The Guardian reckon an additional £17m could persuade RB Leipzig into sanctioning an early sale. Worth it, Liverpool fans?
11:44 GMT: Keep your eyes peeled on the Chinese Super League in the final weeks of the window ...
Interesting chat with a football agent well connected to the Chinese market. He's pretty sure they'll be 4 more "big" moves to the Super League in this window after Cedric Bakambu. Tax issue having an impact but larger clubs will still spend on good African/Brazilian talent.— John Bennett (@JohnBennettBBC) January 11, 2018
11:23 GMT: How about this for a story. One of the longest careers in football has been extended after 50-year-old striker Kazuyoshi Miura renewed his contract with second-division J-League club Yokohama FC on Thursday. Miura, who will turn 51 on Feb. 26, will enter his 33rd season this year. Fair play!
11:21 GMT: ESPN FC sources hard at work this morning, and another like from Huddersfield. They have agreed a deal to sign Norwich City attacking midfielder Alex Pritchard.
11:11 GMT: Huddersfield Town are one of a number of clubs to have registered an interest in taking Liverpool's Marko Grujic on loan, a source has told ESPN FC.
10:51 GMT: SPORT say Barcelona and Hebei Fortune have finally struck a €10 million agreement for Javier Mascherano. It's sill not clear when deal will be completed but that's one to keep an eye on.
10:48 GMT: Daniel Sturridge to Inter Milan and Dani Ceballos to Liverpool are two of today's transfer rumours, courtesy of Football Whispers.
10:28 GMT: If this comes off, Crystal Palace will have a Sako, Sakho and Sakho in their squad. A £10m deal for West Ham's Diafra Sakho has been agreed, sources have told ESPN FC.
10:14 GMT: Napoli have stolen a march on Inter Milan in the race to bring Gerard Deulofeu back to Serie A, according to reports in Italy.
10:10 GMT: No-go, Mr. Hodgson: the agent of Fiorentina forward Khouma Babacar says his client is happy at the Viola amid reports of interest from Crystal Palace.
09:58 GMT: Some AC Milan fans have hit out at Gianluigi Donnarumma following last summer's antics when he appeared set to leave the club. They even made him cry! And now Milan's sporting director Massimiliano Mirabelli says he would not stand in the teenager's way if he did leave the San Siro. "We would be delighted if he would spend his whole career here. The moment he no longer wants to stay, which is not the case, then we would help him leave because nobody stays here against their wishes," Mirabelli told La Gazzetta dello Sport.
09:55 GMT: All the details on Yerry Mina's move to Barcelona can be found here.
09:53 GMT: Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Kevin Trapp has spoken about his future this month: "For the moment, I am staying with PSG until the end of the season. My playing time is not enough for me but for the moment, I am still in Paris. Whenever I can play, I will do my best -- even with less game time. That is my goal. After that, it is up to the coach. However, if I want to go to the World Cup, all I can do is work hard and then we will see."
09:50 GMT: Luke Shaw may be enjoying an upturn in fortunes but Manchester United continue to be linked with left-backs. They can forget about signing rising Fulham star Ryan Sessegnon, though. The 17-year-old is going nowhere. That's disappointing for Tottenham too, as they've been linked as well.
09:38 GMT: Former Manchester United man Javier Hernandez has scored four goals in 21 appearances for the Hammers. Safe to say the move hasn't worked out.
09:36 GMT: Want to know more about Barcelona's new boy? Of course you do! Luckily, Tim Vickery is here with an insightful piece on the Colombian. Have a read.
09:35 GMT: Ooooh! A done deal! And it's a notable one. Barcelona, say hello to your new centre-back, Yerry Mina.
09:13 GMT: Tottenham's Dele Alli earns around £60,000-a-week. That's a decent wedge, but considering Spurs' rivals can afford to treble his money, it's no wonder they're planning on offering him fresh terms. The Telegraph reckon he's in line for a big pay hike.
09:12 GMT: Genoa midfielder Ricardo Centurion has confirmed he will play for Malaga until the end of the season. The Argentinian has made only five appearances in all competitions for the Serie A outfit and will join the struggling La Liga club on a six-month loan. "I´m very happy and enthusiastic about this step," Centurion told Radio Continental.
09:10 GMT: Manchester United defender Demetri Mitchell is set to join Scottish Premiership side Hearts on loan, sources have told ESPN FC.
09.04 GMT: Lots of transfer news around Reading at the moment. Manager Jaap Stam has said the club are not in the market for Manchester United left-back Cameron Borthwick-Jackson but they are interested in Southampton's Sam McQueen who plays in the same position.
Strikers Tom Bradshaw of Barnsley and Fulham's Chris Martin are two other players Stam has confirmed interest in, but he also said they do not have much to spend in the January transfer window and may have to sell to buy with defender Liam Moore linked with West Ham, West Brom and Celtic.
Stam on Cameron Borthwick-Jackson rumour: 'We've mentioned his name in the past but not at this time to be honest.' #readingfc— Anthony Smith (@Smudgersport) January 10, 2018
08.53 GMT: Arsene Wenger confirmed that Arsenal midfielder Francis Coquelin will join Valencia in a permanent deal.
"Yes. He goes to Valencia, he didn't get enough games," Wenger said. "I let him go."
And he's not too concerned that Coquelin's departure will leave Arsenal short, adding: "The best way to replace him is getting [Aaron] Ramsey and [Mesut] Ozil back," he said. "Then we'll see. We have players injured." Read more here.
08.35 GMT: It looks like Hatem Ben Arfa will not be leaving Paris Saint-Germain this month. Leicester had been linked where he would have been reunited with his former Nice manager Claude Puel.
Le Parisien say that Hatem Ben Arfa has had no news from sporting director Antero Henrique, so has decided to see out his PSG contract & not leave this month.— Jonathan Johnson (@Jon_LeGossip) 11 January 2018
08.12 GMT: Asked if he remains confident that Alexis Sanchez will stay at Arsenal until the summer, when his contract expires, Arsene Wenger said: "Yes, that's what I want.
"I want him to stay for longer because he's a very important players for us. When he came on tonight, you could see that he created straight away danger.
"We have to accept as well when you play so many games and Sanchez plays every game that sometimes a breather in the middle of the season helps a little bit." Read more here.
07.40 GMT: Thursday's Transfer Talk live blog kicks off with news that Guangzhou Evergrande have denied speculation they are set to enter into a bidding war with fellow Chinese Super League side Beijing Guoan for the services of Gabon international striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Read more here.
Wenger looks to Malcom as Alexis replacement
Alexis Sanchez was left on the bench for the first leg against Chelsea, further suggesting he is edging towards the exit. And despite Arsene Wenger's protests to the contrary over his wantaway Chile star, he may already be looking for his replacement, according to the Mirror.
The Gunners have initiated talks with Bordeaux over Brazilian forward Malcom, who will cost around £45 million.
Tottenham and Manchester United have also been monitoring the 20-year-old after hitting seven goals in Ligue 1 this term.
Arsenal know that their fans will demand immediate reinforcements if they do salvage the little value left in Sanchez by selling to Manchester City, meaning another forward could be brought in.
Boca Juniors' Cristian Pavon, likely available at around £30m, is another target as Wenger looks to overhaul his attack in light of his talisman imminently on his way out.
...Rafina in Gunners link
One of the negatives from the Carabao Cup semifinal first-leg goalless draw between Arsenal and Chelsea at Stamford Bridge -- besides the utterly boring nature of the match -- on Wednesday night was Jack Wilshere's injury.
Although it's not thought to be serious at first glance, Wenger must consider entering the market for cover and Barcelona star Rafinha could be an attractive option.
Sport claims the Gunners have approached the player with a view to moving this month amidst the arrival of Philippe Coutinho and the subsequent lack of opportunities the Brazilian will now likely have under Ernesto Valverde.
Celta Vigo and Inter Milan are also keen on the Rafinha, who is valued at an affordable €20m by the Blaugrana.
Man City continue Evans talks
Manchester City are continuing talks with West Brom over the signing of Jonny Evans, according to the Telegraph, with the Northern Ireland international set to decide on his future.
The Baggies centre-back could cost around £21m -- a similar fee to the one that the Blues bid last summer due to the 30-year-old's contract now just 18 months from expiring.
Pep Guardiola is the main attraction for Evans, who would prefer to stay in the northwest rather than head south to Arsenal, who are also keen.
Alan Pardew hopes a decision will be made over Evans' future one way or the other soon as he is conscious of the time constraints to reinvest the money in order to beat the drop.
- Huddersfield have agreed an £11m fee with Norwich for Alex Pritchard with the player set to undergo a medical with the Terriers on Thursday.
The Canaries will make a profit of £3m 18 months on from signing the 24-year-old from Tottenham.
- Sporting Lisbon have won the race to sign Brazilian talent Wendel from Fluminense, beating out Porto and Paris Saint-Germain.
The 20-year-old midfielder will cost €7.5m and his five-and-a-half year contract will include a €60m release clause, although ESPN FC writer Tim Vickery says the Brazilian club are getting the raw end of the deal from Spurs.
- Tottenham are ready to offer Dele Alli a new-and-improved contract to ward off interest from Manchester City and Real Madrid, claims the Telegraph.
The England star has four years to run on a £60,000-per-week deal, yet Spurs know that is well below his market value and are now ready offer new terms at £100,000-per-week.
- Juventus and Sampdoria have held a meeting over transfers with Uruguayan midfielder Lucas Torreira and Belgian star Dennis Praet top of the list for the Old Lady, according to Sky Sport's Gianluca Di Marzio.
Juve would reportedly prefer Praet and could make a move this month, while the Blucerchiati could take back Rolando Mandragora or Alberto Cerri on loan as part of the deal.
- Inter Milan are close to signing former Chelsea midfielder Ramires from Jiangsu Suning with Tuttosport quoting the Brazilian as saying: "I want Inter."