Transfer window: From PSG's unveiling plans for Neymar to Nemanja Matic's 'done deal' at Manchester United
Will Neymar seal a €222 million deal to Paris Saint-Germain or will Alexis Sanchez force a move to Manchester City? Read what the papers had to say.
The most followed transfer saga is all set to end with reports suggesting that Neymar is very close to joining French giants Paris Saint-Germain for a jaw-dropping €222 million. While the likes of Gerard Pique, Andres Iniesta, Dani Alves and Sergio Ramos all sharing their thoughts on the rumours, the final decision rests firmly with Neymar.
Barcelona though, are not looking to let go of their prized possessions easily. According to ESPN FC, the Catalan club will report PSG to UEFA for violating the Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules in their pursuit of signing Neymar.
PSG, however, are unfazed and are reportedly making plans on how to unveil their mega-money signing to the world. According to ESPN FC, the Ligue 1 giants are thinking of presenting Neymar as their player at Doha, home of their Qatari owners amid fanfare.
Neymar is reportedly in line to earn €30 million per annum and if Sport are to be believed, his father Neymar Sr will earn €62 million which will be made up of loyalty bonus from Barcelona and signing on fee from PSG.
Elsewhere, AS report that PSG will cash in on three players to balance their books with the likes of Angel di Maria, Blaise Matuidi and Lucas Moura all set for a move away from Parc de Princes.
Barcelona meanwhile, are planning on life after Neymar. According to Mirror, Eden Hazard, Phillipe Coutinho and Dele Alli have been earmarked as potential replacements if Neymar leaves Camp Nou. On the other hand, Marca believe that Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann will be approached to fill the gap left by Neymar.
Back in England, Mirror reports that if Coutinho is successfully poached by Barcelona, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is reportedly targeting Christian Pulisic from former club Borussia Dortmund as a worthy replacement. The Reds have been dealt a blow in their pursuit of RB Leipzig midfielder Naby Keita. The Guardian quotes Leipzig manager Ralph Hasenhüttl as saying that the chances of Keita moving to Anfield are “null”.
Another big news is that Alexis Sanchez will reportedly put in a transfer request to force a move to Manchester City. The Chilean forward, who has not returned to Arsenal for pre-season after contracting the flu, will hand in a transfer request according to Mirror and join City where he will reportedly earn €320,000 a week as per the Daily Mail.
After having a largely unsuccessful pre-season tournament in Asia where his side lost two of the three matches played, Antonio Conte has reportedly asked the club to loosen the purse strings and add three players to the squad to avoid a repeat of Chelsea’s doomed title defence in 2015-16 reports Express.
The Blues could make-up for the money spent by offloading Serbian midfielder Nemanja Matic to Manchester United. The Manchester Evening News reports that Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has approved a deal which will see Matic move to United for €45 million.
The imminent arrival of Matic has forced United’s Marouane Fellaini to look for a move away from the club. According to the Independent, the Belgian is all set to move to Turkish giants Galatasaray after the club’s owner confirmed that the Istanbul-based club have held talks with the player and United.
If reports are to be believed, Everton are not done with their transfer business even after securing the likes of Wayne Rooney, Sandro Ramirez and Jordan Pickford. Mirror reports that Ronald Koeman’s side has offered Swansea an improved bid of €45 million with add ons and defender Callum Connolly for Swansea midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson.
Dembele on Thursday said he "won't give in to blackmail" after the club's director of football Mateu Alemany said the winger must leave before the end of January.
Ferran Torres was presented last week but hadn't been added to Barcelona squad due to the Spanish league's strict financial fair play rules.
Dembele has been left out of Xavi Hernandez's squad to face Athletic Bilbao in the Copa del Rey last 16 on Thursday night.