<
>

LIVE Transfer Talk: Chelsea want Gimenez to strengthen defence

play
Will Chelsea have enough money to add Atletico's Gimenez? (1:22)

Don Hutchison says Frank Lampard has to address the club's back line amid links to Jose Gimenez. (1:22)

The coronavirus pandemic has made the transfer market uncertain -- and you can find out when the windows open here -- but here are the rumours floating around Europe's big leagues and beyond.

TOP STORY: Lampard focuses on Gimenez signing for £60m

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard is targeting Atletico Madrid defender Jose Gimenez, according to the Daily Star.

The Blues have already signed striker Timo Werner and winger Hakim Ziyech and are expected to add Bayer Leverkusen's Kai Havertz to a new-look squad, but Lampard knows he needs defensive reinforcements.

Real Madrid left-back Sergio Reguilon is in talks to join, with discussions already at an advanced stage, sources have told ESPN's Rodrigo Faez and Alex Kirkland. But Gimenez would add some much-needed quality to the Blues' central defence, and though he has a release clause of £110 million, Lampard is hoping to get him for significantly less.

The Uruguayan is highly rated, though he has struggled with injury this season. And while Chelsea have rotated Antonio Rudiger, Andreas Christensen, Kurt Zouma and Fikayo Tomori, Gimenez would slot seamlessly into centre-back.

- Stream ESPN FC Daily on ESPN+ (U.S. only)
- Don't have ESPN? Get instant access

LIVE BLOG

23.00 BST: 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!

22.40 BST: Tottenham have reportedly reached an agreement with Southampton over the transfer of midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and are turning their attention to another South Coast target.

Reports in England indicate that Hojbjerg will move to Spurs for an initial £15 million, with Kyle Walker-Peters likely moving the other way. The Denmark international and former Bayern Munich man chose Spurs over Everton and one unidentified club, who had also had a bid accepted by Saints.

The Mirror writes that now Tottenham will turn their attention to Bournemouth's Callum Wilson, who is expected to be available after the Cherries slipped down to the Championship. Wilson, 28, is being targeted by Jose Mourinho and Co. to back up Harry Kane at Tottenham. Bournemouth are asking for upwards of £20m for the England international, who is also on the wishlists of West Ham and Newcastle.

22.06 BST: FC Juarez are back in Mexico's top flight and according to their coach, coach be close to landing a Mexico international.

Juarez manager Gabriel Cabellero has revealed that the club is in talks with Marco Fabian and that a deal is 'close' but not finished yet. The 31-year-old attacker, who has played 43 times and scored nine goals for El Tri, last played in Qatar with Al-Sadd.

The former Chivas graduate also has spent time in Germany with Eintracht Frankfurt and the United States with the Philadelphia Union.

21.45 BST: Premier League new boys Leeds are tipped to make an upgrade at striker with Stuttgart frontman Nicolas Gonzalez the latest linked with a move to Elland Road.

According to the Mirror, Marcelo Bielsa is reportedly keen on adding his fellow Argentine, who last season bagged 14 goals for the 2. Bundesliga runner-ups. Capped three times by Argentina, Gonzalez, 22, is valued at £20 million.

Edinson Cavani and Ollie Watkins are two other strikers who have been linked with Leeds this window.

20.57 BST: With Dean Henderson heading back to parent club Manchester United -- at least initially -- Sheffield United need a new goalkeeper.

The Blades' No. 1 target appears to be Bournemouth's Aaron Ramsdale but at least to this point the two clubs have failed to reach a deal. Sky Sports has learned that the Cherries have rejected a bid of £12 million from Sheffield United for the goalkeeper. Sheffield United remain hopeful of bringing Henderson back on loan for a third-consecutive season from Old Trafford but also are covering their bases by pursuing former England Under-21 Ramsdale.

20.07 BST: Celtic manager Neil Lennon has told Sky Sports that Celtic are interested in making a shock move for veteran striker Steven Fletcher.

The Scotland international, 33, last played in Scotland in 2009 with Hibernian, having spent time at Burnley, Wolves, Sunderland, Marseille and Sheffield Wednesday since.

Last season at Hillsborough, Fletcher scored 13 league goals in 27 appearances for the Owls.

19.18 BST: Liverpool have opened up the bidding for recently-relegated Norwich left-back Jamal Lewis.

Liverpool reportedly would like to bring in the 22-year-old for depth behind Andrew Robertson and, according to the Athletic's James Pearce, have made a £10 million bid for Northern Ireland international. The Athletic also writes that Lewis is "desperate" to force through a move and is willing to be a backup but that Norwich are holding out for around £20m for the player.

18.39 BST: Arsenal are closing in on Willian but even more importantly, the London club are nearing a contract extension with top scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

The Daily Telegraph understands that the Gabon international has made his decision regarding his future and is set to ink a new three-year contract at the Emirates.

The 30-year-old striker has scored 54 goals in 85 league games for the Gunners since arriving from Borussia Dortmund but had been linked with a move away, after Arsenal again failed to qualify for the Champions League.

17.51 BST: Lille look to be closing in on signing a Victor Osimhen replacement, as Goal.com are reporting that the French club have come to an agreement with Gent for prized young striker Jonathan David.

Lille, who recently recouped an initial €70 million from Napoli for Osimhen, will pay Gent a reported €30m for the 20-year-old Canadian striker. David, who was also linked with Arsenal and Man United, scored 23 goals in 40 games last season for Gent.

17.03 BST: Strong words here on Alexis Sanchez's move from Man United to Inter Milan.

play
1:12

Ogden: Sanchez the worst signing in Manchester United history

Mark Ogden says Man United will have lifted a "huge financial weight" as Sanchez moves to Inter Milan.

15.59 BST: Borussia Dortmund are set to make use of their reputation for forming future superstars as they plot another raid on the Manchester City academy.

According to Bild, the Bundesliga club have set their sights on 15-year-old winger Jamie Bynoe-Gittens. He will turn 16 on Saturday and from then on is free to negotiate a contract with clubs outside the United Kingdom.

The England U16 international has also been linked with La Liga giants Barcelona and Real Madrid, however Dortmund's reputation as the go-to club for U18 talent is set to help BVB land the player as well as their good business ties with Bynoe-Gittens' agent Emeka Obasi, who also represents Jadon Sancho.

15.17 BST: Tottenham are interested in Brentford winger Said Benrahma after the club failed to make the Premier League.

Benrahma, 24, has been linked with Arsenal and West Ham but the Daily Mirror reports that £25m will be enough to sign the Algerian and Tottenham are top of the queue.

14.50 BST: Good news (sort of), Barcelona fans. Club president Josep Maria Bartomeu has said he is convinced that Lionel Messi will retire at the club in "three or four years."

Messi, 33, is tied to the La Liga giants until June 2021 and has yet to sign a contract extension.

"It's not just me that says so but Leo has always said it, that he wants to end his professional career at Barcelona," Bartomeu told beIN Sports. "I think it's the club of his life. It's a man for a club and it's the best club for him."

14.09 BST: Manchester City defender Eric Garcia has apparently told the club he wants to leave.

Garcia, 19, has only just broken into the first team but it seems his head has been turned by interest from his boyhood club Barcelona.

No wonder sources have told ESPN's Rob Dawson that City are retaining their interest in Kalidou Koulibaly and Pau Torres despite announcing the £40m signing of Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake.

13.40 BST: A lot of crazy things have happened in the transfer market, but Cristiano Ronaldo to PSG won't be one of them.

play
1:15

Marcotti pours water on 'Ronaldo to PSG' rumours

Gab Marcotti finds it very hard to believe Cristiano Ronaldo could be leaving Juventus for PSG this summer.

12.51 BST: Bayern Munich defender Jerome Boateng is open to a return to the Premier League in the future, but has said the Bundesliga is still the best for developing promising young players.

Boateng, 31, has been at Bayern Munich since 2011 after a frustrating season at Manchester City and has been a key cog in their run of eight-straight Bundesliga titles. The central defender is focused on their Champions League campaign, but with his contract up in 2021, there will be plenty of clubs keen to sign the Germany defender if he opts against extending at Bayern.

"I would not say no [to a Premier League return]. I love to [watch] the Premier League, I loved also when I was there to play," Boateng said at a news conference. "For me it was really unlucky because I got injured straight [away] and then I didn't really play the position they promised me. But I still took a lot from this year, playing in the Premier League, it helped me a lot to play and train with great players, world-class players."

12.10 BST: ICYMI - A consortium led by U.S. businessman Dan Friedkin has signed a deal to buy Serie A club Roma.

"AS Roma SPV will transfer to Friedkin its controlling interest held in the club and some related activities, including the funds it has made available to the club to support its expected capitalization," a statement said. "The transaction is expected to close by the end of August 2020."

Jim Pallotta, the president of Roma, said: "I am pleased to confirm that we have reached an agreement with the Friedkin Group for the sale of AS Roma. We signed the documents and in the next few days we will work together to complete the formal and legal path that will lead to the change of hands of the club."

11.45 BST: Manchester City are patiently waiting for local rivals Manchester United to bring the Jadon Sancho transfer over the line, says kicker, because it means they will get a windfall.

The England winger came through the City academy before his 2017 move to Borussia Dortmund for around €8m. As part of the deal, City added a 15 percent sell-on clause and as Dortmund will not sell for anything below €120m, that means City are set for an €18m payment if they stump up the cash in full.

11.17 BST: Getafe would like to sign Real Madrid's Brahim Diaz on loan this summer, president Angel Torres has confirmed.

The club were keen on a move for Diaz, 21, last year and were close to a deal in January before the playmaker decided to stay at the Bernabeu.

"Real Madrid know we're interested in him," Torres told Cadena COPE radio after Getafe's Europa League defeat to Inter on Wednesday. "If they let us and he wants to come, we'll make room for him at Getafe."

Diaz -- who signed for Real Madrid from Manchester City in January 2019 -- made just six substitute appearances in La Liga this season and is looking for more playing time.

11.03 BST: Barcelona have completed the signing of Sao Paulo's teenage striker Gustavo Maia on a €4.5m transfer, with a €300m buy-out clause, the club announced on Thursday.

The Catalan outfit had paid €1m in March to the Brazilian club to have a preferential option to acquire 70% of the player's sporting rights.

10.30 BST: But should Arsenal be interested in a 31-year-old?

play
1:08

Why Willian to Arsenal makes 'almost zero sense'

Gab Marcotti sees only one reason why Arsenal would want to add Chelsea's Willian on a three-year deal.

10.25 BST: Willian has agreed a three-year contract at Arsenal worth around £100,000-a-week, sources have told ESPN's Tom Hamilton, with the move expected to be announced later this month.

The 31-year-old had been in talks over a new contract at Chelsea but will end his seven-year association with the club after they were not prepared to offer him the terms he wanted. Blues head coach Frank Lampard wanted Willian to stay and has been pushing the club to find a breakthrough in negotiations, which have been deadlocked for months.

However, sources said that Lampard has failed to persuade the Chelsea hierarchy to sort a new contract for Willian and Mikel Arteta has stepped in to secure the midfielder, who won two league titles and the Europa League at Chelsea.

10.06 BST: Alexis Sanchez's nightmare at Manchester United is over after signing for Inter Milan on a permanent deal.

United have agreed to cancel the remaining two years of Sanchez's contract and the Chile international has joined Inter on a free transfer and signed a three-year contract.

Sources have told ESPN's Rob Dawson that United have handed Sanchez a "small" pay-off and club chiefs are satisfied with the conclusion of the 31-year-old's disastrous spell at Old Trafford. Sanchez, according to sources, has taken a pay cut to facilitate the move.

10.04 BST: David Alaba is sending positive signals he will sign a new deal at Bayern Munich, kicker reports.

Alaba, 28, has a contract which expires in 2021 and both sides have yet to reach an agreement over a new deal. The Austria international has been linked with Manchester City, but has dreamed of playing in Spain and was eyeing a move to Barcelona or Real Madrid.

However, the economic crisis in football caused by the coronavirus pandemic has not worked in his favour and after initial talks between Alaba and Bayern collapsed in June, they have now restarted.

play
1:16

Marcotti expects David Alaba to remain at Bayern

Gab Marcotti explains why a new deal at Bayern Munich is beneficial for David Alaba and the club.

Elsewhere at Bayern, kicker says that midfielder Javi Martinez has been linked with a move to Rennes.

The 31-year-old was one of the cornerstones of Bayern's 2013 Treble winning season but has seen less playing time in recent years. Under contract until 2021, he has no long-term future at the Allianz Arena and this summer will be the last chance for the German champions to cash in on him.

Kicker also reports that Lucas Hernandez could leave the Allianz just one year after arriving as the league's record signing following his €80m transfer from Atletico Madrid.

Injuries have not helped the 24-year-old's development and the defender has Jerome Boateng, Niklas Sule and David Alaba ahead of him in the pecking order at centre-back.

09.31 BST: Borussia Dortmund expect to keep Manchester United target Jadon Sancho this summer, according to the German club's sporting director Michael Zorc.

United are keen to sign Sancho but have so far refused to match Dortmund's €120m asking price. The Bundesliga side have set a deadline of Aug. 10 for the two clubs to reach an agreement but Zorc believes the England winger will stay.

"I assume that Jadon will go to training camp on Monday and play with us for the coming season," he said on Wednesday.

Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke added there has been no contact with United, but sources have told ESPN's Rob Dawson that early negotiations have taken place. No bid has yet been tabled but there remains hope at Old Trafford that a deal can be reached.

09.22 BST: Manchester United youngster Tahith Chong, 20, is pushing for a move to the Bundesliga, his agent has confirmed.

"He would like to play in the Bundesliga," Erkan Alkan told Bild. "We'll discuss this with Manchester United on Thursday."

Chong, a regular for the United's reserves, has been identified by Werder Bremen as a player to help the Bundesliga side avoid another season stuck in a relegation battle. The German side's chiefs Frank Baumann and Clemens Fritz have already met with Alkan earlier this week and they later called Chong a potentially interesting player.

Chong is under contract at Old Trafford until 2022 but was limited to just three brief Premier League appearances last term. Should he move to Germany, it is expected that he will join Bremen on an initial loan deal.

08.59 BST: Manchester City announced the signing of Nathan Ake from relegated Bournemouth to a five-year deal on Thursday evening.

Ake becomes City's second signing of the summer after they announced the arrival of Ferran Torres from Valencia.

Bournemouth needed to cash in on Ake following their relegation from the Premier League and City have agreed a £40m deal with a further £1m in bonuses, sources told ESPN.

Chelsea had a buy-back clause in the deal that sold Ake to Bournemouth in 2017 but sources told ESPN they were not interested in a deal to re-sign their former player.

The 25-year-old made 121 appearances for Bournemouth after moving from Chelsea, initially on loan, in 2016. He has won 13 caps for the Netherlands.

- Transfer grades: City get A for Torres and B+ for Ake

play
1:04

Are Manchester City finished buying defenders?

Gab Marcotti explains why Nathan Ake is a "Pep player," and he believes Man City will sign another defender.

08.28 BST: Villarreal have secured a loan deal of Real Madrid's Take Kubo for the 2020-21 season, sources have told ESPN's Alex Kirkland. The midfielder will arrive to Villarreal on a season-long loan with no purchase option included in the deal.

Kubo spent the 2019-20 campaign on loan at Mallorca, where he scored four goals and set up five more in 35 league appearances. With Eder Militao, Rodrygo and Vinicius Jr. occupying the three-non European spots at Madrid next season, Kubo, 19, could not remain at the club.

As many as 30 clubs had reportedly shown an interest in acquiring the Japan international but Villarreal proved to be the right fit. PSG had reportedly wanted to sign Kubo on a permanent transfer but Real Madrid have no intention of selling the player. Bayern Munich and Ajax were also keen to sign Kubo on loan but the player prefers to remain in La Liga.

Madrid wanted a club that pays Kubo's €2m wages and that gives the player the chance to play European competition next season.

Villarreal, who appointed Unai Emery as coach last month after dismissing Javi Calleja, finished fifth in La Liga to qualify for European football next season.

08.00 BST: Inter Milan have agreed to sign Alexis Sanchez from Manchester United on a permanent three-year deal, the Serie A club's CEO Giuseppe Marotta said on Wednesday.

Sanchez signed with Inter on loan at the start of the 2019-20 season following a disappointing spell at United where he scored only five goals in 45 matches.

Although the Chilean scored only four league goals this season, he seemed to have rediscovered his touch in Italy where he topped the club's charts with eight assists as Antonio Conte's Inter finished runners-up behind Juventus.

"It will be official tomorrow [Thursday] in the morning," Marotta told Sky Sports. "The player is completely ours and we have a three-year contract with him. We think he can be a full member of our squad."

The transfer will also allow Sanchez to play in the rest of Inter's Europa League campaign after they advanced to the quarterfinals on Wednesday with a 2-0 win over Spanish side Getafe in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.

Inter Milan coach Antonio Conte has applauded his club for completing the deal. Speaking after Inter's win over Getafe in the Europa League on Wednesday night, Conte told Sky Italia: "Sanchez's operation has been a excellent move by the club. I applaud the club for closing an excellent operation, very convenient. We deserve it,

"He came at a bad moment in his career and with us he immediately got hurt. We waited for him and he is now doing well. It is fair that we are the ones that can now enjoy him."

play
1:34

Zlatan's contract is almost up, will he stay or go?

Gab Marcotti explains the "big call" AC Milan must make regarding Zlatan Ibrahimovic's future.

PAPER TALK (by Nick Judd)

PSG and AC Milan in chase to sign Barca's Emerson

Barcelona full-back Emerson Royal hasn't played for the club this season, but his form for loan side Real Betis could help his employers raise some much-needed income, reports Sport.

AC Milan have already seen a €20m bid rejected for the Brazilian, and now they could be blown out of the water by the French champions.

Barcelona and Betis share the rights to the player, and the latter will be in line for compensation should the 21-year-old be sold this summer thanks to the player having a two-year loan agreement.

Now, as well as Milan, Paris Saint-Germain are stepping up their interest, though no official bid has been forthcoming.

PSG and Barcelona don't have the best relationship, but Emerson could still be used as a makeweight for the transfer of Neymar, rumours of which continue despite the Brazilian stating he's happy in the French capital.

Arsenal to move for Lille defender Gabriel

In-demand defender Gabriel Magalhaes appears to be closing in on a move to Arsenal, according to French outlet La Voix Du Nord.

Gunners chiefs have been talking to the player's representatives and it now appears as though the Londoners have edged ahead of rivals Manchester United and Chelsea in an effort to land the Lille 22-year-old.

Lille want €30m for a player they purchased for €3m in 2017, while Napoli have also been monitoring him.

Tap-ins

- PSG boss Thomas Tuchel is demanding his side sign David Alaba to reinforce his defence, according to Le10 Sport. Alaba has been a long-term target for the French champions but the interest has intensified, with Tuchel keen to replace the outgoing Thiago Silva with the Austrian's experience. Alaba has one year remaining on his contract, and though PSG appear to be the front-runners, Le10 Sport believes Bayern would rather sell to Barcelona or Real Madrid.