Monday, October 18, 2021
Home Game Transfer Talk: Barca pursue Man City's Torres to improve attacking options

Transfer Talk: Barca pursue Man City’s Torres to improve attacking options

The summer transfer window is closed for the top leagues in Europe! After a summer full of international football, countless clubs waited until the last minute to pull off their transfers. See all the major deals here and check out how we graded the biggest signings. But just because the window is shut until January, that doesn’t mean the rumours won’t keep coming.

TOP STORY: Barca look to Man City’s Torres to boost attack

Barcelona are hoping to sign Ferran Torres from Manchester City, despite seeing an offer rejected during the summer, according to The Sun.

Barca had previously been hoping to take the Spain forward on loan with the promise of making the move permanent, but that idea was laughed off by Pep Guardiola and the Man City hierarchy.

The former Valencia man wasn’t always a regular feature in the team last season, but has done enough to impress Guardiola and, this term, the 21-year-old has taken on a more prominent role, scoring three goals in all competitions so far.

While this likely makes a move more difficult for Barcelona to complete, it is seemingly not putting them off trying to make it happen. The plan is to go back in for the forward during the summer transfer window, with the Catalan giants’ new chief executive Mateu Alemany knowing him well from their time at the Mestalla.

This is deemed especially important as Barcelona’s squad is in need of added attacking quality, after Lionel Messi went to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer, and was then followed out of Camp Nou by Antoine Griezmann, who joined Atletico Madrid.

Considering Barca’s financial difficulties, it will be interesting to see how the club, who were held to a second-straight draw from a bottom club in LaLiga on Thursday, plan on making this move work.

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13.16 BST: Atalanta midfielder Marten De Roon was frustrated in his attempt to do something nice for the fans by both signing and personally paying for the first three “De Roon” replica shirts purchased over the counter.

“I bet Messi never has to deal with this,” the 30-year-old quipped as the wait went on, and on, and on, as nobody showed up.

There was even time to complete a jig-saw puzzle, play cards and even steal 40 winks in the changing room while De Roon loitered. Unfortunately, the midfielder was eventually forced to leave the store without signing a single shirt as staff locked the doors and finished their shifts for the day.

12.30 BST: Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has become absolutely vital to the club.

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2:18

The ESPN FC crew praise Karim Benzema for taking the responsibility of being Real Madrid’s best player and leader.

11.54 BST: Liverpool could move for West Ham forward Jarrod Bowen, says the Liverpool Echo.

Bowen, 24, scored eight goals in 40 games last season and was linked with a £20m move in the summer window.

Now, after impressing in two games against Manchester United, Bowen has caught the eye of Liverpool again.

11.05 BST: El Nacional says that Manchester United have made contact with Barcelona over a move for winger Ousmane Dembele.

Dembele, 24, has struggled with injury since moving to Camp Nou from Borussia Dortmund for €105m in 2017.

The France forward is sidelined with injury again now and Barca are looking to move him on, either on loan or a permanent deal, as they struggle to deal with debts of €1.4 billion. His contract expires in 2022 so the club are looking to recoup some transfer fee.

10.37 BST: One of Barcelona’s main sponsors complained to the club when Lionel Messi left for Paris Saint-Germain in August, a senior member of the board said this week.

Vice president Eduard Romeu disputed that Messi’s departure would have a major effect on revenue from sponsorship but confirmed some of the club’s partners were left unhappy by his exit.

Romeu stopped short of naming the sponsor who complained about Messi leaving, but sources told ESPN the grievance came from one of the club’s key partners. For a number of years, some of Barca’s biggest sponsors, such as Rakuten and Beko, have relied on being able to use Messi’s image to sell their products around the world.

10.02 BST: William Gallas says he “can’t understand” why Arsenal paid £50m to sign Brighton defender Ben White when Real Madrid’s Raphael Varane was available for £41m.

Speaking to Genting Casino, Gallas said: “It’s difficult for me to understand why Arsenal spent £50m on one player who is yet to prove himself at the top level and at the same time Manchester United can spend around £40m on [Raphael] Varane who won the World Cup and has four Champions League titles.”

We can help you out here, William:

– White is younger. 23 vs. 28
– He’s English and joining an English club, which always sees the fee rise
– His contract didn’t have one year left to run on it, as Varane’s did
– And as if Varane would have moved to Arsenal anyway given they didn’t qualify for Europe this season.

09.45 BST: Mark Ogden explains more about why Man United are moving on from Declan Rice.

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1:08

Mark Ogden reveals that Manchester United are looking for a less expensive alternative to West Ham’s Declan Rice.

09.20 BST: Manchester United’s scouts have been instructed to identify alternative options to Declan Rice in the club’s search for a defensive midfielder next summer, sources told ESPN’s Mark Ogden, amid concerns over West Ham’s £90m valuation of the player and contrasting opinions within Old Trafford over his ability to significantly improve the team.

Rice, 22, emerged from England’s Euro 2020 campaign as one of the key figures in Gareth Southgate’s team as the Three Lions reached their first major tournament final since the 1966 World Cup. His performances for England have been followed by an impressive start to this season for David Moyes’ team, who have faced United in their last two senior fixtures in the Premier League and Carabao Cup.

Though United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer remains an admirer of Rice, sources told ESPN the club’s recruitment team is yet to be convinced the former Republic of Ireland youth international possesses the qualities to take the team to another level.

08.51 BST: Dani Alves has turned down an offer to join Fluminense, according to reports.

The 38-year-old right-back left Sao Paulo earlier this month over a pay dispute two years after joining the club. Talks between the player and Fluminense ended after no agreement could be reached regarding his wages.

The Brazil international was a reported target of Internacional, Coritiba, Athletico-PR and Flamengo. Alves has until this evening to register with a Brazilian club or he will have to find a club overseas if he wants to play this season.

He captained Brazil to the gold medal at the Olympics and was called up by Tite for last month’s World Cup qualifiers.

08.30 BST: Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba is Barcelona’s main target next summer, according to Sport.

The France international has not signed a contract extension with United and becomes a free agent next year. However, Barcelona’s financial situation means that Pogba will have to reduce his wages if he is to arrive at Camp Nou.

Pogba, 28, has long been linked with Real Madrid and Juventus, but the midfielder is a also big admirer of Barcelona.

Having invested £89.3m when bringing him back to Manchester for a second spell in 2016, the Red Devils are hoping to convince the player to sign a new deal before they lose him for nothing.

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1:33

Juventus get their first win of the Serie A season, but Julien Laurens isn’t convinced they’re back on track yet.

PAPER GOSSIP (by Danny Lewis)

AC Milan are showing an interest in signing Anderlecht attacking midfielder Yari Verschaeren, having previously brought in Alexis Saelemaekers from the Belgian club, reports Calciomercato. The 20-year-old has already been looked at by Paris Saint-Germain, but Milan have been targeting the player who has a €10m valuation.

Marca is reporting that Barcelona could be looking to offload Philippe Coutinho during the January transfer window. The Brazilian has struggled ever since moving to Camp Nou, and it now seems that teenagers Gavi and Yusuf Demir are ahead of him in the pecking order after they were picked to start against Cadiz in Thursday’s goalless draw.

– Clubs in England, Germany and Italy are looking at FC Dallas striker Ricardo Pepi, according to Calciomercato. The 18-year-old has an impressive record of 12 goals and two assists in 24 MLS games this term, so it should no surprise that clubs are hoping to add him to the list of U.S. talents plying their trade in Europe.

Aston Villa are offering young striker Cameron Archer a new contract to prevent him quitting the club in January, as has been reported by Football Insider. His deal runs out in the summer of 2022, with clubs across the Premier League and Europe waiting to contact him — those from overseas are allowed to at the end of the year. The hope is that an improved deal will help to keep him at Villa Park.

– Saudi Pro League side Al-Raed have confirmed the signing of 33-year-old striker Eder on their official channels. The man best known for scoring Portugal‘s winning goal at Euro 2016 had been a free agent after the culmination of his contract with Lokomotiv Moscow.

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