The summer transfer window is into its final week for the major European leagues, which means the biggest clubs are looking to make a splash in the market while they still can. Check out the latest gossip below, and see all official deals here.
TOP STORY: Liverpool make late move for Bissouma
Brighton now want around £40m to let Bissouma go, but aren’t under any pressure financially as they have already allowed defender Ben White to join Arsenal for £50m.
15.09 BST: Manchester United are in pole position to sign Cristiano Ronaldo following the intervention of the Juventus forward’s former Old Trafford teammates, sources have told ESPN’s Mark Ogden.
The 36-year-old, who spent six years at United between 2003 and 2009, is set to leave Juventus before the Aug. 31 transfer deadline after confirmation from the Italian club’s coach, Massimiliano Allegri, that he has asked to leave the Serie A team.
Manchester City had seemed to be Ronaldo’s next destination after ESPN sources revealed on Thursday that the former Real Madrid player had spoken on the phone to City manager Pep Guardiola about moving to the Etihad.
But City have now abandoned their attempts to sign Ronaldo, who had become a target following their failure earlier this week to strike a deal with Tottenham for Harry Kane, following United’s late move to open talks with Ronaldo’s agent, Jorge Mendes on Thursday.
Sources have said, however, that Ronaldo still favoured a move to Premier League champions City when United entered negotiations and was only convinced to consider a return to Old Trafford following contact from a number of former teammates.
ESPN has been told that Ronaldo was still exchanging texts and WhatsApp messages with some ex-players as late as 1 a.m. BST on Friday morning.
14.34 BST: Manchester City have pulled out of the race to sign Cristiano Ronaldo, sources have told ESPN’s Rob Dawson.
Sources said that City were tempted to explore the possibility of signing the 36-year-old after Harry Kane announced he would be staying at Tottenham Hotspur, and that the Portugal international was keen to move to the Etihad Stadium.
City considered signing Ronaldo but decided it was not the right fit, particularly because of the finances involved. Juventus are asking for a fee of around €28 million while Ronaldo’s wage demands would also have to be met.
Sources added that there is now an expectation at the Etihad Stadium that Ronaldo will join rivals Manchester United. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer refused to rule out the possibility at his news conference on Friday.
14.15 BST: Busy day for Fabrizio Romano as he reports Lille have turned down an approach for defender Sven Botman from Wolves.
Botman, 21, helped Lille win Ligue 1 last season and could leave the club this summer.
Sevilla are also interested if Chelsea complete a €50m move to sign Jules Kounde, while Wolves will look at Marseille’s Duje Caleta-Car and Fulham’s Tosin Adarabioyo if they can’t land Botman.
14.02 BST: Fabrizio Romano reports that Manchester United have been in direct contact with agent Jorge Mendes since Thursday night over a move for Cristiano Ronaldo.
Looks like it’s between United (his former club) and City, but the United board will have to meet to discuss wages, transfer fee and all the financials before they can make an offer.
13.50 BST: One club NOT interested in signing Ronaldo (yet) is Chelsea.
Manager Thomas Tuchel has also been holding a news conference and was asked about his club’s remaining activity in the transfer window.
“We have still some ideas,” he said. “We are trying. Not all decisions are taken regarding our squad. I am happy with the squad like it is and I have a lot of confidence we are absolutely competitive on a high level. All eyes are open.
“Kurt [Zouma] has some personal, family issues to solve and we allowed him to travel to France. There are negotiations [with West Ham] but to be very honest I don’t know where it leads right now. We have to wait. Both things can happen — that he stays or leaves.”
13.39 BST: Aaaaand right on cue, Man City boss Pep Guardiola is also speaking. Guess what about?
He said: “I cannot say much. Harry Kane announced he is continuing to his club, an exceptional club like Tottenham. Cristiano is a Juventus player and I can’t say anything else. All I can say in these three, four days left of the transfer window anything can happen.
“Right now I am more than delighted with the squad we have and we will stay the same. I say the same; Cristiano will decide where he wants to play, not Manchester City, not myself. There are many things that are far away.”
Guardiola was also asked about the club’s attempts to sign Kane from Tottenham, claiming City didn’t put an offer on the table.
“The club did absolutely everything,” he added. “We didn’t talk with Tottenham — not even one offer — because they did not want to negotiate. When they don’t want to negotiate, there is nothing to say.”
13.30 BST: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has refused to rule out the possibility of Cristiano Ronaldo joining Manchester United by saying “he knows that we’re here.”
Ronaldo looks set to leave Juventus after telling the club he wants to move before the deadline and asking about a return to Old Trafford, Solskjaer refused to categorically rule out a move for the 36-year-old, who has been heavily linked with Manchester City.
“I didn’t think Cristiano would leave Juventus,” Solskjaer told a news conference on Friday. “If he ever wants to move away from Juventus he knows we are here. For me he is the greatest player of all time. We have had a bit of communication and I know Bruno [Fernandes] has been talking to him as well. There’s been a lot of speculation the last few days.
“Let’s see what happens with Cristiano, he’s a legend of this club. I played with him and coached him. He’s a tremendous human being. Let’s see what happens with Cristiano.”
12.52 BST: Brazil midfielder Casemiro has signed a new deal with Real Madrid until 2025.
— Real Madrid C.F. 🇬🇧🇺🇸 (@realmadriden) August 27, 2021
12.40 BST: Here we go…
Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri has been speaking at a news conference. And he said: “Yesterday, Cristiano Ronaldo told me that he no longer has any intention to play for Juventus. For this reason he will not be called up for tomorrow’s game.
“Things change, it’s a law of life. Juventus remains, which is the most important thing. Cristiano gave his contribution, he made himself available, now he leaves and life goes on.
“Cristiano is to be thanked for what he has done, also as an example amongst the youngsters. But as I said, we must go on.”
12.36 BST: Is U.S. international midfielder Weston McKennie going to depart Juventus this summer?
Gab & Juls feel off the pitch issues could end up seeing Weston McKennie depart Juventus.
12.20 BST: Juventus are planning for life after Cristiano Ronaldo.
Calciomercato says they want to sign either Man City striker Gabriel Jesus or PSG’s Mauro Icardi, while they have opened talks over a return for Everton’s Moise Kean.
12.05 BST: Wolves have rejected a €5m loan offer for winger Adama Traore by Tottenham Hotspur, says the Daily Telegraph.
Traore, 25, is viewed as key to Wolves and the club won’t want to let him go. But Tottenham are keen and could return with another try.
Spurs have already agreed a €20m move for 18-year-old Pape Matar Sarr, who is likely to be loaned back Metz for the season, while they want to offload midfielder Tanguy Ndombele and right-back Serge Aurier.
Watford are also closing on a deal for Spurs’ 32-year-old midfielder Moussa Sissoko, says The Daily Mail, as they want to sign a replacement for the departing Will Hughes, who is set to join Crystal Palace.
11.57 BST: The Times says that Everton are targeting FC Porto winger Luis Diaz, and as part of the deal Colombia midfielder James Rodriguez would move to Porto on a season-long loan.
11.44 BST: Sky Sports claims that Borussia Dortmund are interested in a loan move for Manchester United right-back Diogo Dalot.
Dalot, 22, spent last season on loan at AC Milan and hasn’t made much of an impact at Old Trafford after signing from FC Porto for €22m three years ago.
AC Milan and Bayern Munich are also both interested in the Portugal international, though Dortmund want a loan with an option to sign him permanently next summer.
11.28 BST: Tottenham have entered the running for Barcelona youngster Ilaix Moriba, sources have told ESPN’s James Olley.
The 18-year-old is refusing to sign a new contract with the Catalan giants, triggering a scramble for his signature with RB Leipzig and Chelsea among the teams closely monitoring the situation as his deal expires in 2022.
Spurs have now joined the race, having been encouraged following initial talks with the midfielder’s representatives.
Barcelona are thought to want a fee in the region of €20m if he continues to show no willingness to commit his future to the club.
Leipzig are considered the front-runners as things stand, but Chelsea remain keen on the midfielder, though they are also in talks to sign Saul Niguez from Atletico Madrid and sources claim the Blues are not likely to pursue both players.
11.00 BST: Manchester City have completed the signing of Australia international defender Alanna Kennedy on a two-year deal.
Kennedy, 26, joins the club after a stint at fellow Women’s Super League outfit Tottenham Hotspur.
“It feels super exciting. Obviously, City an amazing club and I’m honoured to be part of it,” she told the club website. “I think the team are capable of winning trophies and so I’m excited to be part of an amazing group and I think winning will be a big part of our season this year. City’s brand of football is it’s amazing to watch. I think it will suit me and hopefully I can help the team.”
10.45 BST: Where would Cristiano Ronaldo fit in up front at Man City?
Frank Leboeuf has questions about how Pep Guardiola would fit Cristiano Ronaldo into his Manchester City squad.
10.35 BST: Cristiano Ronaldo has missed Juventus training, according to ESPN sources, as his proposed move to Manchester City edges closer.
Sources told ESPN on Thursday that Ronaldo was close to finalising an agreement with City after speaking to manager Pep Guardiola.
He left Juve training earlier in the week with a suspected arm injury and sources at Juve confirmed to ESPN that Ronaldo did not take part in training on Friday.
10.12 BST: Wayne Rooney has questioned whether Cristiano Ronaldo should complete a potential shock move to Manchester City this summer due to his Manchester United past.
Sources have told ESPN that Juventus forward Ronaldo is close to reaching an agreement with the Premier League champions before the transfer window closes.
The former United striker, who is now Derby County manager, was asked about the possibility of the transfer in his news conference and replied: “I don’t know what to make of it, to be honest.
“If you’re asking me if I think it’s possible then I have major doubts that it is a possibility. Cristiano has got a great legacy at United. I don’t think he’s going to move somewhere for financial reasons. I’d be unsure if that’s going to happen. I think there’s more chance of it being Paris Saint-Germain if he is to leave Juventus.
“On the other hand, it’s football, it can happen, it has happened before. Big players and legends from Manchester United in terms of Peter Schmeichel went to City, Andy Cole went to City, Mark Hughes managed City. It has happened before but I think someone of Cristiano’s stature I can’t see it happening.”
09.59 BST: Real Madrid are now “poised” to sign Kylian Mbappe, according to Marca’s frontpage story on Friday, with the club now seeing a deal to sign the forward as being “very close.”
Sources told ESPN on Thursday that Madrid had submitted a second, improved offer of €170m plus €10m in bonuses to Paris Saint-Germain.
The Spanish newspaper says an agreement is now “imminent” and could even be made official in “a matter of hours,” with PSG likely to accept the inevitability of Mbappe’s departure rather than risk losing him for free next summer.
Diario AS agrees that a deal could be done this weekend, saying that the Emir of Qatar has ordered PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi to negotiate.
According to AS, Real Madrid are lining up the No. 5 shirt — which once belonged to Mbappe’s idol Zinedine Zidane — for the forward.
09.41 BST: The future of Saul Niguez is “up in the air” with just days left in the transfer window and no progress on a possible loan move to Chelsea or Manchester United, Marca reports.
The newspaper says this has been “the longest summer” for the Atletico Madrid midfielder, with his future having been “unknown since the end of May.”
A loan is most likely, Marca claims, but “it remains to be seen” if Chelsea’s interest becomes concrete.
09.21 BST: The Athletic says that Harry Kane “turned down a bumper new contract offer from Tottenham earlier this month.”
Earlier this week, Kane confirmed he is staying at Tottenham, ending Manchester City’s long-running pursuit of the England captain. The 28-year-old informed Spurs of his desire to leave in May and despite City boss Pep Guardiola confirming the Premier League champions’ interest in signing Kane, an agreement could not be reached between the two clubs.
Tottenham valued Kane in excess of £150m and were hugely reluctant to enter into negotiations given the striker had three years left on his £200,000-a-week contract and is of central importance to the team.
The new contract offer is reportedly no longer on the table and Kane has no desire to sign one anyway, with his terms expiring in 2024. However, some reports have suggested that a release clause could be added into any new deal.
09.03 BST: Chelsea are hopeful of completing a deal worth in the region of €50m for Sevilla defender Jules Kounde as defender Kurt Zouma closes on a move to West Ham United from Stamford Bridge, sources have told ESPN’s James Olley.
Talks with Sevilla over Kounde have been ongoing for some time but Chelsea needed to offload a centre-back first before pushing ahead with a move.
West Ham agreed a €29.2m (£25m) fee for Zouma earlier this month but personal terms were an issue with the 26-year-old reluctant to leave Stamford Bridge.
Kounde, 22, is keen on a move to the European champions but Sevilla are believed to be demanding the majority of any transfer fee paid up front. The exact fee and the structure of payments are yet to be formally agreed but sources told ESPN the two clubs are nearing an agreement worth approximately €50m.
08.34 BST: Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has ruled out selling striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang this summer.
The north London club are seeking to offload several members of their squad, sources have told ESPN, after spending more than £130m on new players and there had been speculation that the club were willing to listen to offers for their leading striker.
Aubameyang scored a hat-trick on Wednesday as Arsenal thrashed West Brom 6-0 in their Carabao Cup second-round tie at the Hawthorns on the same day Manchester City’s pursuit of Tottenham Hotspur forward Harry Kane collapsed.
Sources have told ESPN that City are still in the market for a striker, but when asked at a news conference on Thursday whether he was concerned they could move for Aubameyang, Arteta replied: “I don’t know. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is our player and he will remain here.
08.00 BST: Manchester City and Cristiano Ronaldo are close to reaching an agreement over a sensational move to the Etihad Stadium, sources have told ESPN’s Rodrigo Faez and Gabriele Marcotti.
Sources said hat City boss Pep Guardiola and Ronaldo spoke on the phone on Thursday morning ahead of his possible departure from Juventus.
Obstacles would still have to be overcome before the transfer is done — particularly Juventus’ demand for a fee — but there is cautious optimism a deal can be reached, sources said.
Juventus would want around €28m before allowing Ronaldo to leave but there is a keenness to get the 36-year-old off the wage bill.
Ronaldo and his team have communicated to Juve officials that he wants to leave the club now and won’t be part of the squad for next Saturday’s game against Empoli.
Frank Leboeuf says he hopes Kylian Mbappe stays with Paris Saint-Germain to play alongside Lionel Messi.
PAPER GOSSIP (Danny Lewis)
– With Kylian Mbappe‘s potential transfer from Paris Saint-Germain to Real Madrid on the horizon, L’Equipe reports that the Parisians have alternative options in mind if the 22-year-old departs. Sources have told ESPN that the teams are nearing a deal after Madrid submitted an €180m offer to PSG for Mbappe’s transfer. If that were to pass, L’Equipe states that PSG would then look at Borussia Dortmund‘s Erling Haaland, Manchester United‘s Paul Pogba and Stade Rennes youngster Eduardo Camavinga.
– Sources also told ESPN on Thursday that Manchester City are working on a deal to land Juventus star Cristiano Ronaldo. Should that happen, City may depart with several high-profile players with Fabrizio Romano suggesting that Raheem Sterling could leave if a high enough bid arrives. Gabriel Jesus, however, will not be leaving as Pep Guardiola is keen to keep hold of the Brazilian.
– Borussia Dortmund are hoping to sign Manchester United full-back Diogo Dalot on loan with an option to make the deal permanent, reports Sky Sports. They’re not alone in their interest, though, as AC Milan — where the 22-year-old spent last season on loan — and Bayern Munich are also looking at him.
– There has been plenty of talk surrounding Willian‘s potential departure from Arsenal, and Calciomercato are now claiming that AC Milan are interested in the Brazilian. It is also stated within their report that the Italian giants are looking at FC Porto midfielder Sergio Oliveira.
– Everton boss Rafael Benitez is keen on Brighton & Hove Albion striker Neal Maupay and Burnley winger Dwight McNeil, according to Sky Sports. However, the Toffees could face problems if they aim to bring in either one of the pair due to Financial Fair Play rules. They are currently struggling to offload players such as James Rodriguez, Fabian Delph, Cenk Tosun and Moise Kean before the deadline.
– Lyon have been looking at Montpellier striker Gaetan Laborde. However, Le10Sport are suggesting that they could be eyeing Clermont Foot frontman Mohamed Bayo. The 23-year-old has previously impressed in Ligue 2 and continued to do so since Clermont’s promotion to Ligue 1, with his form also catching the attention of Bordeaux and PSV Eindhoven.