The 2022 January transfer window is closed, but there’s still plenty of gossip swirling about who’s moving where. Transfer Talk brings you all the latest buzz on rumours, comings and goings and, of course, done deals!
TOP STORY: Bayern make move to sign Gravenberch
Bayern Munich have made an opening bid to sign Ajax Amsterdam midfielder Ryan Gravenberch, according to De Telegraaf.
Bayern had expressed their interest in the 19-year-old, who has also been heavily linked with Manchester United, but now — after supposedly meeting with his agent Mino Raiola and discussing personal terms — talks between the two clubs are now underway.
Bayern are looking to land the Netherlands international for around €25m, which is below Ajax’s asking price of €35m.
Gravenberch is out of contract in 2023 but has expressed his wish for Ajax to receive a fee when he does choose to leave. The young midfielder may also consider his chances of first-team football in Munich will be limited by the presence of Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka, Jamal Musiala and Marcel Sabitzer.
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10.35 GMT: London-based global investment firm Centricus confirmed on Monday they have joined the race to buy Chelsea.
Preferred bidders to succeed Roman Abramovich as the club’s owner are expected to be identified in the coming days after Friday’s deadline for offers passed with around 20-30 interested parties.
Centricus co-founder Nizar Al-Bassam and CEO Garth Ritchie are season-ticket holders at Stamford Bridge, as are Jonathan Lourie of Cheyne Capital and Talis Capital’s Bob Finch, who have both joined forces to strengthen the bid.
In a statement shown to ESPN, Centricus claims their offer includes funding for the completion of the transaction in addition to working capital, funds required to “maintain an elite global brand, investment in grassroots” and “strategic real estate investment.”
09.29 GMT: Arsenal winger Bukayo Saka has impressed in recent weeks and could be rewarded with a new contract, according to The Athletic.
Saka, 20, has 10 goals and five assists in 33 games so far, and scored the winner at Aston Villa this weekend to keep the Gunners on track to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
The England international signed a three-year contract in 2020, with the option of another year, but his form has warranted new talks and “an initial conversation has now taken place” over an improved deal.
08.51 GMT: Real Madrid legend Guti believes that the club will need to move quickly to sign Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland.
Haaland, 21, has a €75m release clause which comes into effect this year, but Madrid are focused on persuading PSG’s Kylian Mbappe to join when his contract expires in the summer.
“Mbappe inspires enthusiasm among all of us, not just at Real Madrid. It’s very important for LaLiga that he comes,” Guti told El Chiringuito. “And if Haaland can come, all the better. If they don’t sign Haaland now, they will never sign him. Because then he’ll go to another big club and it will be difficult to sign him.”
Madrid forward Karim Benzema, who is now 34 years old, has 32 goals and 13 assists in 34 games across all competitions this season. But Guti said that competition for places would help him prolong his career.
“Benzema is great but look at the age he is,” he added. “Hopefully he can hold out longer, but he’s his age and if you can spare him in games and use Haaland instead, all the better.”
08.30 GMT: LaLiga leaders Real Madrid were embarrassed 4-0 by rivals Barcelona in El Clasico this weekend and El Nacional claims the club are looking to improve their midfield.
Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti reportedly wants to sign 25-year-old Inter Milan midfielder Nicolo Barella, with the 32-year-old Toni Kroos‘ future at the Bernabeu in doubt now.
Barella is considered one of the best young players in Europe and helped lead Italy to Euro 2020 success.
Alejandro Moreno explains why Messi leaving Barcelona has been the springboard for young talent to grow at Camp Nou.
PAPER GOSSIP (by Nick Judd)
– Kalvin Phillips is a wanted man this summer, and the Times believe Aston Villa are favourites to sign the 26-year-old from Leeds United. The England midfielder has been a revelation for club and country in the last two years and, though Phillips is under contract until 2024, Villa are prepared to pay £60m to tempt him away from Elland Road. West Ham United and Newcastle United are also said to be interested.
– Chelsea’s Belgian winger Charly Musonda is a free agent in the summer and Goal believes AS Roma boss Jose Mourinho could sign the 25-year-old. Musonda announced in December that his 10-year spell at Chelsea would be coming to an end in June, and Roma face competition from Real Betis, where Musonda played on loan, as well as Hellas Verona.
– Divock Origi is set to leave Liverpool this summer and is in talks to join AC Milan as a free agent, according to Nicolo Shira. Schira says the Belgian striker’s agents are due for talks with Paolo Maldini in the next few days to reach an agreement. Milan are said to be willing to offer the 26-year-old a four-year contract worth €3.5m-a-year. Origi has scored some iconic goals for Liverpool under Jurgen Klopp, but his lack of game time this season, particularly following the Reds’ signing of Luis Diaz, suggests he’s on the periphery of the German’s plans going forward.
– Juventus are looking to seize the uncertainty around Chelsea by signing defender Antonio Rudiger in the summer, according to Gazzetta dello Sport. The Italian giants are also reported to be looking at midfield duo Conor Gallagher and Jorginho too, with Chelsea currently severely hampered by sanctions imposed on the club.
– Atletico Madrid are reportedly keen to sign Aston Villa defender Matty Cash, and Sport says the Premier League club will use the money raised from that deal to help finance Philippe Coutinho‘s permanent switch from Barcelona. Atletico are still trying to fill the full-back void left by Kieran Trippier, who joined Newcastle United in January, and are reported to have held talks with Cash’s agents about moving to the Spanish capital. A €40m transfer could have a knock-on effect when it comes to Villa convincing Coutinho to stay after his loan expires, with a €40m option to sign him permanently included.