Premier League transfer needs: What every team must do in January window

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With the January transfer window now open in England from today until Jan. 31, what does each team need?

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Below we take a look at the most pressing needs for all 20 Premier League teams.

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Strikers will be in high demand this January, with plenty of clubs hoping to make the most of the loan market to help them kick on in the second half of the season.

TEAM MAIN NEED
source: CB Liverpool: With rumors of Neven Subotic potentially arriving at Anfield and both Sakho and Skrtel injury prone, perhaps Klopp should move to add another center back. Let’s see how active he is during his first transfer window in charge. Expect outgoings.
source: CM Manchester City: Fabian Delph hasn’t quite got going at City and Yaya Toure continues to underwhelm when playing as a true center midfielder. Long-term, you can see why they are targeting Paul Pogba but they probably won’t do any business in January.
source: CAM Leicester City: The surprise package of the season so far will look to keep hold of Vardy and Mahrez in January. If they do, adding a creative attacking midfielder may be a nice luxury as Kante, Drinkwater, King et al. are great two-way players but lack creativity at times. No need to spend big and disrupt the balance in the squad.
source: Striker Tottenham Hotspur: Bringing in someone to push Kane all the way and act as a back-up is key. They have Son and Njie who can play centrally but both are better out wide. A solid loan move for a striker would be key. Charlie Austin?
source: Striker Manchester United: Louis Van Gaal needs fresh impetus in attack. Fast. Lambasted for a lack of goals — just 22 in their opening 19 games — United are creating the chances but not finishing them. A loan move for a poacher is highly necessary.
source: DM Arsenal: The imminent signing of Basel’s Mohamaed Elneny is exactly what Wenger needed and subject to a work permit being granted, Arsenal’s main need of a new defensive midfielder has been filled. For once, the Gunners may have done their business early.
source: Winger Everton: With Steven Naismith said to be on his way to Norwich, a spot in Everton’s attack has opened up. Kevin Mirallas has returned recently but real pace out wide should compliment the power of Lukaku and creativity of Barkley.
source: Striker Crystal Palace: Alan Pardew‘s side are solid at the back and have plenty of pace out wide to create chances. Putting those chances away has been a problem all season long. Wickham and Chamakh aren’t prolific. Maybe taking a punt on a top score from the Championship is worth it?
source: ACM Southampton: Ronald Koeman‘s team are well stocked in most areas but you feel like a little more competition in the central attacking role could bring the best out of Dusan Tadic and Sadio Mane. Also, a striker could be needed with Graziano Pelle going through a lean patch.
source: CM Chelsea: With Fabregas and Matic struggling to protect the back four, getting a new midfielder to link defense and attack should be key. I’m talking about a true two-way player. A new CB is also a big need but it’s unlikely Chelsea will land their main target in that position, John Stones, until the summer.
source: Striker Stoke City: The Potters have flair in abundance in the final third with Afellay, Bojan and Shaqiri the three attacking midfielders in a 4-2-3-1 formation. Having a clinical poacher to finish off the chances would make a huge difference as Arnautovic blows a little hot and cold.
source: Striker West Bromwich Albion: With Saido Berahino on the bench more often than not, WBA are without their best forward due to his ongoing willingness to leave the Hawthorns. Maybe he will end up leaving and the Baggies can bring in a top replacement? They are the third lowest scorers in the PL.
source: CB Watford: Quique Sanchez Flores has worked miracles at Watford and they look healthy in attack with Ighalo and Deeney scoring for fun. At times you wonder if they could upgrade their defense and bringing in a new center back may help them continue their stunning start to life back in the PL.
source: Striker West Ham: Plagued by injuries up top, Slaven Billic’s team are starting to get healthy with Andy Carroll and Enner Valencia nearing full fitness. That said, the Hammers could do with some reinforcements up top. A loan move would be ideal.
source: Striker Swansea City: Okay, so first, they need a manager, but the Swans are the second lowest scorers in the league as Andre Ayew and Bafetimbi Gomis have stopped scoring. They look better at the back but adding quality in attack is crucial for their chances of staying up.


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ACM Sunderland: The Black Cats need major strengthening throughout their team and although bolstering their defense should be a priority, adding someone who can win games for them is key. Big Sam has come up with some gems in the past (Jay-Jay Okochoa and Youri Djorkaeff to name a few) and a playmaker could make all the difference.
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ACM Norwich City: If Naismith does arrive from Everton, he will be the man to provide extra attacking impetus and genuine PL quality in the final third. An experienced attacker will help Alex Neil‘s side.
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CB Bournemouth: After adding Juan Iturbe on loan to bolster their attack, the Cherries have moved to take care of their main need. Looking at CB, they still look short and if Elphick goes down again, they could be struggling.
source: ACM Newcastle United: A lack of goals and ingenuity in the final third has plagued the Magpies. If they can get service to Wijnadlum, Perez and Mitrovic then it would boost their chances of staying up.
source:  Striker Aston Villa: When you’re in as dire a situation as Villa, you need one thing: goals. Villa need help to score goals, with Jordan Ayew the only man scoring regularly. Who will want to join a team looking destined for the drop?

VIDEO: Top 10 players in the world as soccer resumes

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Who are the top 10 soccer players in the world right now as the season is about to resume in multiple leagues?

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With the Bundesliga in full flow for a few weeks, Spain’s La Liga will return next week and the Premier League and Serie A will follow the week after.

Given that there are so many superstars scattered across those four leagues, here’s a list of the top 10 players set to be in action over the summer months as we will be treated to a sort of bonus World Cup with multiple leagues spreading out games over multiple days as top four, title and relegation battles take center stage.

From Manchester to Milan and Barcelona to Berlin, there will be so many superstars in full flow in the coming months.

Of course, the Ligue 1 season in France is canceled so we can’t watch Neymar and Kylian Mbappe for at least a few months. If we could, the Paris Saint-Germain duo would be high up on the list of top 10 players in the world right now as the soccer world gets ready to resume in empty stadiums.

Top 10 players in the world who will be in action this summer

10. Ciro Immobile (Lazio)

9. Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)

8. Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

7. Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund)

6. Eden Hazard (Real Madrid)

5. Bruno Fernandes (Man United)

4. Kevin de Bruyne (Man City)

3. Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus)

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

Liverpool, Man United show support for Black Lives Matter

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Liverpool and Man United have joined the growing number of clubs and players across the world offering their support to the Black Lives Matter movement in the USA and honoring George Floyd.

Following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, MN last Monday there have been widespread protests across the USA.

A video showed former Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, putting his knee on George Floyd’s neck for more than 8 1/2 minutes. Chauvin was arrested last Friday and charged with murder, authorities confirmed.

Over the weekend Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho and Achraf Hakimi revealed messages of support on their jerseys, while USMNT midfielder Weston McKennie wore an armband saying ‘Justice for George’ and Borussia Monchengladbach’s Marcus Thuram took a knee after he scored in the Bundesliga.

On Monday Liverpool players posted a photo of their entire squad taking a knee around the center circle at Anfield during a training session with the message Black Lives Matter and Unity is Strength, while Man United star Marcus Rashford released a powerful statement on the widespread protests across the USA.

Paris Saint-Germain and France superstar Kylian Mbappe also posted an image on social media with the caption “police with us, not against us.”

Across the soccer world clubs and players are speaking out in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and honoring George Floyd.

Report: MLS threaten lockout, players on the clock

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Reports have emerged that MLS may lock out their players as the owners put the MLS Players’ Association (MLSPA) on the clock when it comes to negotiating a plan for the 2020 season during the coronavirus pandemic.

Per a statement released by the MLSPA late Sunday, they say that players have formally submitted a package to the league so that “players can return to competition as soon as they are safely able to do so.”

However, it is believed that package has been countered by the owners and the league want a decision by Tuesday or will sanction a lockout.

The MLS players’ statement detailed that they voted in favor of “economic concessions for the 2020 season, modifications to the recently agreed-upon CBA, including its extension by a year, and their agreement to participate in a summer tournament in Orlando.”

They also accepted salary reductions across the board, reduced bonuses and additional concessions to existing and future terms of the CBA.

Multiple reports, including this one from ESPN’s former USMNT striker Hercules Gomez, states that MLS owners are giving the players until Tuesday to come to an agreement or they will shut the league down.

MLS reportedly say they have already given the players their best offer and they are not budging, with a report from Jeffrey Carlisle of ESPN saying that the league want the players to take a 8.75 percent pay cut, while the players have agreed to 7.5 percent. There is also the ‘force majeure clause’ which would allow either side to back out of a CBA due to a diastrous event such as the coronavirus pandemic.

The top-flight of soccer in North America has been shut down since Mar. 12 and talks have been ongoing for several weeks between MLS and the MLSPA regarding the financial impact the coronavirus pandemic will have on the league.

With players making big concessions across the board, the fact that MLS shot that offer down so quickly suggests both sides still have a long way to go around the virtual negotiating table. Time is running out.

Right now, the 2020 MLS season looks like being a mini-tournament in Orlando for six weeks to hold things over and who knows what comes after that. But given the location of many of their teams in states which still have strict lockdown orders, plus fans not being allowed to attend sporting events across the country, the situation appears bleak for MLS for at least the next few months and probably much longer than that.

Man United extend Ighalo loan deal

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Man United have announced they have extended the loan deal for Odion Ighalo.

The initial loan deal for Ighalo, 30, was due to run out on May 31 but Man United came to an agreement with his parent club Shanghai Shenhua to extend the loan until January 31.

In a statement the Red Devils said the loan extension would “enable Ighalo to build on an impressive start to life with the club he supported as a boy.”

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is a huge fan of the Nigerian international striker, who was signed as cover for the injured Marcus Rashford in January and scored four goals in eight games in all competitions.

“They [Shanghai Shenhua] have been great towards us, allowing him to play for his dream club. It’s been a dream for him and hopefully he can finish what he started and win a trophy with us,” Solskjaer told MUTV.

Ighalo has given United more than a Plan B option up top since he arrived. The former Watford striker has held the ball up, brought other attacking players into play and scored a stunner against LASK in the Europa League. He has truly taken his chance at the club he supported as a boy and he deserves this extension.

Now that Rashford is back fit as the suspension allowed him to recover, how often will Ighalo play for Man United? He will likely get plenty of minutes in the FA Cup and Europa League, plus jump off the bench in the majority of Man United’s Premier League games and start a few. Ighalo won’t start every game but he’s proved he can be trusted to deliver goals, hold up the ball and add an extra dimension to United’s attack when they need it late on in matches.

Many people ridiculed Solskjaer and Man United for making his loan move in January but Ighalo has proven the doubters wrong and he’s perfect for a back-up option to Rashford and Anthony Martial in attack.

Extending this loan deal makes sense for everyone.