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Transfer Rumor Roundup: Berahino to Stoke; Zelalem in talks

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Saido Berahino could finally be leaving West Bromwich Albion.

[ MORE: Latest January transfers

Sky Sports claim that Berahino, 23, has been the subject of a bid by Premier League side Stoke City who are looking to add a striker in January. 

Berahino hasn’t played for West Brom since September and had been sent to a training camp in France to work on his match fitness. He’s not scored this season and has only made five appearances for the Baggies.

The former England U-21 international was the subject of bids from Stoke and Tottenham Hotspur over the previous transfer windows but West Brom rejected offers of over $26 million.

Now, with Berahino’s contract set to expire in the summer, Tony Pulis‘ side face a tricky decision. If Berahino leaves for another UK team in the summer when he’s a free agent then West Brom will be due a development fee. However if he goes abroad the Baggies will get nothing for him.

Per the report, Stoke have offered way less than their last offer of $26 million for Berahino. It may be in West Brom’s best interests to accept the bid in January because they’re unlikely to get more than $10 million for him (the current record fee which Liverpool had to pay Burnley for Danny Ings in the summer of 2015) in a development fee.


The Guardian is reporting that U.S. national team youngster Gedion Zelalem, 19, is in talk with Borussia Dortmund over a move to the Bundesliga.

Zelalem was born in Berlin and grew up in Germany until he moved to the U.S. at the age of nine. He declared his national team allegiance to the U.S. in May 2015 and was earmarked as a future star by Arsene Wenger.

[ MORE: Wenger talks to PST about Zelalem

The midfielder made his debut for Arsenal at the age of 17 but his career in north London has stalled after going out on loan to Glasgow Rangers in the Scottish second-tier last season. He has made just two appearances for Arsenal this season, both in the EFL Cup.

It is believed no deal for Zelalem is imminent and the silky midfielder has two-and-a-half years left on his contract at Arsenal.

There’s no doubting Zelalem’s ability but at this stage he hasn’t developed physical and perhaps time working with Thomas Tuchel and Dortmund’s young side will bring the best out of him. It is unlikely he’d be part of Dortmund’s first team right away but we obviously know BVB gives youth a chance. Zelalem and Pulisic ripping it up together in the Bundesliga?


With Sevilla and Southampton reportedly interested, it is believed Liverpool have slapped a $26 million price-tag on central defender Mamadou Sakho.

Sakho, 26, hasn’t made a single appearance for Liverpool this season after falling out with Jurgen Klopp last summer during.

The French international turned down a loan move to Stoke City in the summer window but it is now believed Liverpool want a substantial sum for the former Paris Saint-Germain defender rather than loaning him out.

Various reports suggest Sevilla is in talks with Liverpool over a deal for Sakho, while Southampton could make a move if captain Jose Fonte (who has handed in a transfer request) moves on in January. Saints boss Claude Puel didn’t comment on speculation linking them with Sakho but it will be intriguing to see what happens as the powerful center back clearly needs to move on from Anfield.

PL Preview: Manchester City vs. Newcastle

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  • Newcastle has lost 8 PL away matches in a row
  • Man City last lost at home in PL play to Chelsea in Dec 2016
  • Newcastle has picked up 1 of a possible 30 points vs. PL top half this season

Manchester City has a great chance to rebound from its first loss of the season as they host struggling Newcastle at the Etihad on Saturday, live at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC or live online at NBCSports.com.

WATCH LIVE, HERE

The Magpies have picked up their terrible mid-season form of late, but still remain just three points above the drop. They are unbeaten in three, with a win and two draws, and have lost just once in their last five.

Through Newcastle’s losing streak, the Magpies struggled to keep the ball out of their own net, with defensive issues all over the place. They suffered through a nine-game winless run where they conceded 19 goals. However, of late, the roles have reversed, and suddenly they can’t score. In their last four games, they have just two goals.

City, meanwhile, have a few injuries to deal with on the defensive side of things, where they cannot afford them. Fabian Delph went down in the last match and could be out for significant time, along with Vincent Kompany who continues to show his age and history of fitness issues.

INJURIES: Manchester City – OUT: Fabian Delph (knee), Benjamin Mendy (knee). QUESTIONABLE: David Silva (illness), Vincent Kompany (fitness). Newcastle – OUT: Jesus Gamez (ankle). QUESTIONABLE: Dwight Gayle (knock).


What they’re saying

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola on build-up of injuries: “In these situations, it always depends on the mentality of the players, if they can make a step forward. If they can they play in positions that are not natural positions and the other guys help them, everything is going well.”

Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez on not having a full squad: “When you have a short blanket, if you pull it to your face, your feet are cold, if you cover your feet, your top half is cold.”

Prediction

Newcastle has been ok of late, but not nearly enough to keep Manchester City out of the back of the net. This could get ugly, with the Citizens looking to rebound from their season’s first loss. 3-0 Man City with the possibility that it could get much worse if Newcastle gives up.

PL Preview: Burnley vs. Manchester United

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  • Burnley has 1 win vs. Man United in last 23 meetings
  • Manchester United has not conceded a goal in 2018
  • Paul Pogba is joint-top of the league with 9 assists

A critical top of the table battle comes our way from Turf Moor (!!) on Saturday as Manchester United travels to Burnley live on NBCSN or live online at NBCSports.com.

WATCH LIVE, HERE

Since losing at Chelsea back in early November, Manchester United in unbeaten away from home and has won four of the five road matches. Burnley, meanwhile, has lost three matches in a row to start the new year and has not won in Premier League play since December 12th against Stoke City.

The goalscoring form of each team is also in stark contrast. Manchester United has not allowed a goal in any competition in 2018, and last conceded back on Boxing Day in a 2-2 draw with this Burnley side. The Clarets, meanwhile, have just one goal in their last three Premier League games and just three goals in their last six.

INJURIES: Burnley – OUT: Chris Wood (knee), Stephen Ward (knee), Jonathan Walters (knee). QUESTIONABLE: Chris Taylor (ribs). Manchester United – OUT: Daley Blind (undisclosed), Eric Bailly (ankle), Michael Carrick (heart), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (knee). QUESTIONABLE: Marouane Fellaini, Antonio Valencia.

What they’re saying

Burnley manager Sean Dyche on the gap in riches between clubs: “I don’t think any of us are surprised by the gap in the Premier League – I think it’s been there a long time and it’s getting harder year on year since the business model of football has changed.”

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho on focusing despite transfer rumors: “In this moment, [Henrikh] Mkhitaryan our player, [Alexis] Sanchez an Arsenal player and with a match tomorrow, I want to switch off and focus on the most important thing, which is the match.”

Prediction

Burnley may be coming back down to Earth, but they are still a formidable team with great organization, and Manchester United will be once again held to a draw, this time 1-1.

Alexis Sanchez in Arsenal squad, could play vs Crystal Palace

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Ahead of his nearly imminent move away from the Emirates, Alexis Sanchez could make an appearance for Arsenal against Crystal Palace this weekend as he was with the squad at the team hotel on Friday night, according to reports in England.

According to the reports, Arsene Wenger has not decided if he will play Sanchez against Palace or not, as any potential injury could seriously jeopardize any outgoing transfer in the works. However, naming him to the bench and allowing Sanchez to make one last appearance in front of the home fans would be a nice touch before he leaves, likely for Manchester United.

It probably doesn’t help Wenger’s selection that oft-injured Danny Welbeck will miss the match after picking up a muscle problem in training.

Sanchez did not travel with the team to Bournemouth last weekend as Arsenal lost 2-1 in stunning fashion. Sanchez has missed four Premier League games this season, and Arsenal has lost three of them.

The reports state Sanchez trained with the Arsenal first team on Friday, but only because the youth team he trained with the day before had left for a road trip.

Reports: LA Galaxy trades Gyasi Zardes to Columbus for Ola Kamara

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According to a reports by the LA Times and by ESPN, the LA Galaxy have traded US international Gyasi Zardes along with allocation money to the Columbus Crew for striker Ola Kamara.

Both reports state that Columbus will receive $400,000 in guaranteed allocation money in the deal, plus another $100,000 should Kamara score 12 goals next season to trigger the incentive.

Zardes was once a force along the wing for Bruce Arena and the Galaxy, but the 26-year-old has declined heavily in the last two seasons as injuries and poor form have held him to just eight goals over the last two seasons, including just two last campaign. Meanwhile, Kamara has been a star for Columbus in his first two years in Major League Soccer, scoring 16 goals in 2016 before netting another 18 last season, leaving him third in the league in goals scored over those two seasons.

The LA Times report states that Kamara will earn a new contract after the trade, giving him a raise over his current $482,500 yearly salary.

Zardes is an interesting case who shouldn’t be given up on just yet. A homegrown player for the Galaxy, he scored 17 goals in the 2014 season, including on in the MLS Cup Finals as the Galaxy won it all. He earned a seemingly permanent place on the USMNT as a result, and has 37 caps to this date. However, his goalscoring form has since evaporated, leaving him with no more than six goals in an MLS season since, and has just six goals in those 37 caps for the national team.

The Galaxy will need to acquire an additional international roster spot in order to activate Kamara for the season opener on March 4th against Portland, as they have filled up their seven spots as of now.