The summer transfer window is approaching, and there’s 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: Xavi tells Pique his time with Barcelona is done
Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez has reportedly met with centre-back Gerard Pique to tell him that he will not be called upon next season, according to a report by Diario Sport.
While Pique’s ability is not in question, Xavi cited physical issues and unprofessional behavior as reasons for the decision being made, the report says. The main issue is reportedly that Pique isn’t fully focused on football due to his multiple businesses and off-pitch controversies.
Pique was reportedly told that the best solution would be to leave Camp Nou in the most dignified way possible, which would include renouncing a large amount of the €40 million that the club owes him, given his contract expires in 2024.
However, the 35-year-old is said to have refused to leave and insisted that he will train more than ever, a plan that includes abandoning his commitments outside of football.
The Diario Sport report also mentions that Xavi sees Sevilla’s Jules Kounde as the man to replace Pique. Chelsea are also interested in the France international, whose transfer fee could be worth up to €60m, but Barcelona hope to be able to afford to bring him in once they have reduced their wage bill.
despite Andreas Christensen coming in on a free transfer from Chelsea this summer, and Eric Garcia also being in the squad, Xavi reportedly dreams of a defensive partnership consisting of Kounde and Ronald Araujo.
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11.22 BST: Aurelien Tchouameni will wear the No. 18 shirt at Real Madrid, as the €80m midfielder was unveiled at the Bernabeu.
— Real Madrid CF (@realmadrid) June 14, 2022
10:30 BST: Liverpool have landed themselves a top striker in Benfica’s Darwin Nuñez.
Steve Nicol and Ian Darke detail why Darwin Nunez would be the perfect signing for Liverpool.
09.54 BST: Leeds are closing on a deal for Bayern Munich midfielder Marc Rocasays Fabrizio Romano.
Roca, 25, has struggled for game time at Bayern, having moved from Espanyol in 2020, and is ready to leave the club this summer.
Leeds have reportedly agreed personal terms with the Spain international but are still negotiating over a possible €15m transfer fee.
09.28 BST: Brighton midfielder Yves Bissouma is set to move to Tottenham for £25m, reports The Times.
Bissouma, 25, is out of contract in 2023 and has attracted attention from plenty of top sides, including Aston Villa, Liverpool and Arsenal. The Mali international will become the club’s third signing of the summer after Southampton goalkeeper Fraser Forster and Inter Milan winger Ivan Perisic.
In October, Bissouma was arrested under suspicion of sexual assault; he was released and remains under investigation.
09:15 BST: ICYMI – Arsenal have signed marquinhos from Sao Paulo on a long-term contract.
Marquinhos, 19, a Brazil youth international, made 33 appearances for Sao Paulo and won the Compeonato Paulista in 2021.
“We’re delighted to have completed the transfer with Sao Paulo, as Marquinhos was a player we had been watching for a while,” Arsenal technical director Edu said. “At 19, he is still very young, so he is a player for the future. We look forward to Marquinhos now joining us for preseason, making his new home, and continuing to grow and develop with us.”
ESPN reported last month that the deal would be worth €3.5m and that the clubs agreed a fee after Marquinhos rejected multiple contract offers from the Brazilian club and sources suggest Arsenal moved quickly to secure a cut-price agreement.
08.43 BST: Gareth Bale has not ruled out the prospect of joining a club outside of Europe’s top divisions in order to gain playing time ahead of the World Cup.
The Wales international has been his national team’s star player over the past decade, and played a big part in helping them reach this winter’s finals in Qatar as well as their run to the semifinals of Euro 2016.
Bale is out of contract this summer after nine years at Real Madrid and has been linked with a move to Cardiff City, his hometown club, who play in the Championship.
“I haven’t really thought too much about that at the moment,” he told a news conference ahead of Tuesday’s Nations League match against Netherlands. “It’s something I need to sit down and go through, not just with my family but with the manager here, the physios here that we use, to see what would give me the best chance of being fit come November and December.
“I don’t really know if the standard makes too much of a difference, to be honest. Football games are football games. I feel like I’ll never really lose my quality on the ball so I guess it’s a conversation to be had “
However, he did admit that joining the right club, where he would get plenty of game time, was key.
“It’s going to be massively important,” he said. “I need to make sure I’m playing games and I’m as fit as possible. For example, coming into this camp now I wasn’t fit at all, I didn’t have much game time at all. Sometimes I’ m able to get away with it, but ideally I want to be going into a World Cup playing games and being as fit as possible and being able to be as effective as I can for as long as I can.”
08:00 BST: Harry Kane has said the additions of Erling Haland and Darwin Nuñez to the Premier League will spur him on to become a better player next season.
Manchester City officially announced the €60m signing of Haaland from Borussia Dortmund on Monday, just a few hours after Benfica announced a deal had been agreed with Liverpool to sign Nunez.
Kane had wanted to leave Spurs last summer to join eventual Premier League champions City, but Spurs chairman Daniel Levy rebuffed all interest from Pep Guardiola’s side, who opted to not to match Spurs’ £150m (€175m) valuation. The 28-year-old is now expected to remain in north London as head coach Antonio Conte aims to turn Spurs into Premier League title challengers.
Kane has won the Golden Boot as the division’s top goal scorer in three of the past seven years, but last season he finished behind his Spurs teammate Heung-Min Son, who tied with Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah for the award with 23 goals.
Asked on Monday whether Haaland and Nunez arriving in England would make it harder to lead the scoring charts, Kane told a news conference: “The battle for the Golden Boot is always tough. The Premier League has produced some top strikers from around the world for a number of years now.
“You expect the top strikers to want to play in the Premier League and with those two new signings, that is going to be the case. It helps. It helps me as a player to have good competition, it drives me to improve and get So for sure, I look forward to the challenge.
“I try and focus on myself to begin with. Going into any season, I have things I want to achieve and goals I want to reach. I try not to focus too much on other players in that aspect.
“I can’t control what they do but what I’ll do is continue to work hard, improve and after this game have a nice break. But then look forward to what will be a tough preseason, I’m sure, and get ready for the new season as I have done for the last seven, eight years now.”
Gab & Juls discuss how Pep Guardiola will develop Erling Haaland at Manchester City.
– RB Leipzig want €120m for Christopher Nkunku‘s services as they aim to keep the Frenchman, reports The Independent, which adds that the 24-year-old midfielder wants to stay put for another season. This comes with Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Paris Saint-Germain all having looked into the possibility of signing him this summer.
– Along with Kalidou KoulibalyJuventus are hoping to sign Fabian Ruiz from Napoli this summer, according to Tuttosport. The defender and midfielder both have contracts that end in the summer of 2023, though a move for Ruiz in this transfer window could depend on whether or not Arthur departments.
– with Marcos Alonso being heavily linked with a move to Barcelona, The Sun have reported that Chelsea are considering a move for Wolverhampton Wanderers wing-back Rayan Ait-Nouri. It is felt that he would be able to provide good competition and cover for left-back Ben Chilwellwho missed a large amount of the 2021-22 season because of a cruciate ligament injury.
– Having secured the return of Alexandre LacazetteOlympique Lyonnais are now looking to bring Corentin Tolisso back from Bayern Munich, and Foot Mercato have reported that things are progressing positively. The midfielder, who is available on a free transfer, is willing to listen to Lyon’s propositions and could be tempted despite the absence of European football for the Ligue 1 outfit in the upcoming season.
– AZ Alkmaar’s Owen Wijndal is Juventus’ priority in their search for a left-back in the summer transfer window, according to Calciomercato, who also mentioned Udinese’s Destiny Udogie and Hoffenheim’s David Raum as options. The Eredivisie side do not want to drop their valuation below €15m, while Juventus have so far offered just over €10m with add-ons included.