Fabrizio Romano is back with his Monday morning column going through the latest transfer news stories in the Premier League and beyond, with today bringing updates on Real Madrid’s plans after Kylian Mbappe, possible exits at Chelsea and Arsenal, and details of Juventus director Federico Cherubini’s meetings in London…
Kylian Mbappe snub is a blow for Real Madrid as they prepare talks over new transfer plans
What a saga this has been, but from Mbappe and PSG’s point of view it has come to a happy end. The France international has committed his future with a new contract keeping him in Paris until 2025. The effects on the rest of the transfer window could still be significant.
For sure, Real Madrid will change their plan because the initial idea was to complete the team with Kylian Mbappe, Antonio Rudiger and a left back (priority to Fran Garcia’s return), nothing else.
Now the strategy is to consider investing in other positions as well, such as for the midfield. Monaco star Aurelien Tchouameni has been discussed internally at Real Madrid for months, and I’ve also previously revealed Liverpool’s interest in the player.
As for alternatives to Mbappe up front, Mohamed Salah has not had direct contact with Real Madrid as of today and his departure in the summer is not considered easy, while Sadio Mane is still waiting for a meeting with Liverpool before discussing the future.
This week, Carlo Ancelotti and Florentino Perez will have direct contact to plan for the future.
Nicolas Pepe could be heading for a move away from Arsenal – here’s why it went wrong for him at the Emirates Stadium
Nicolas Pepe is a player that Arsenal consider available on the transfer market. Pepe has chosen a new agent recently precisely because he wants to explore different possibilities in the summer, while Arsenal want to invest in Bukayo Saka’s new contract and some funds could also come from Pepe.
Of course, getting the same amount paid to buy him from Lille is almost impossible; Arsenal are conceding that the Ivory Coast international will have to be made available for a discount, and possibly quite a significant one.
It’s a shame to see Pepe perform so poorly in the Premier League because I truly believe he has great quality – they paid all that money to Lille for a reason.
I believe that Arsenal have tried in every way to put Pepe in a position to perform to the maximum, but the player needs total confidence and a place as a regular starter as happened at Lille, otherwise he struggles to grow:
Rafael Leao struggled in his early days months at AC Milan, he also came from Lille… but then Milan manager Stefano Pioli believed in him 100% and made him one of the best talents in the world, the best player in Serie A this year.
As has been widely reported, Chelsea will consider the possibility of new signings up front this summer, but also new midfielder and new centre back.
Thomas Tuchel is still waiting to have a meeting with the board to decide names and strategies, we are still at early stages as he mentioned a few days ago.
Certainly, Christian Pulisic will have a meeting with Chelsea to discuss his future even if his priority is to continue with the Blues. Hakim Ziyech is considered another player with chances to leave the club.
I’ve written before about Romelu Lukaku, and he is still waiting to understand what Chelsea’s plans are for next season as he wants to be a key player.
What was on the agenda for Juventus director Federico Cherubini in his trip to London?
Federico Cherubini has been in London for sure, it’s not the first time and it won’t be the last this summer.
The Juventus director is working in particular on Angel Di Maria and Paul Pogba, two free agents with whom Juve have been negotiating for weeks: they are both priorities for the Italian club, while for Jorginho there are still no advanced negotiations because everything will depend on Chelsea for his future. Juve have no intention to pay big fee for Jorginho. Of course, he is a top player who has been admired by the club for some time, but the deal has to be right.
Despite reports to the contrary, Moise Kean was not offered to Arsenal. The Gunners remain focused on signing Gabriel Jesus from Manchester City; but Kean could leave Juventus in the summer, the club is already looking for a solution.
Why Manchester United’s relationship with Jesse Lingard broke down
The relationship between Jesse Lingard and Manchester United has been really complicated in recent months, this is 100% true.
The player didn’t get the chance to say farewell to the fans at Old Trafford, and it’s clear that he and those close to him were not happy about it, as most of you will no doubt have seen from his brother’s social media activity…
The reason is due to the January Deadline Day: Lingard wanted to leave the club at any cost because Newcastle wanted him for six months, but the club blocked him from moving to St James’ Park after the story of Mason Greenwood changing Man United’s plans in the last 24 hours of the transfer window.
Lingard tried in every way to persuade the club to leave, but there was no way to change the situation.
As for the latest on his future, my understanding is that West Ham have had contacts with Lingard’s camp to discuss a potential return. The England international was outstanding in his time on loan with David Moyes’ side and I think this could be a good move for him. He’s a top player, but I think he needs to feel happy and trusted by his manager, and he would get that with the Hammers.