Spanish international Alvaro Morata has arrived in London for his medical as he is set to become the most-expensive signing in Chelsea’s history.
[ MORE: Morata’s rank in PL strikers ]
The reported overall fee Chelsea have agreed to pay Real Madrid varies from $85-97 million when you calculate the add-ons, but one thing that’s for sure is Morata is eager to get going in west London.
Morata, 24, flew in from the U.S. overnight, as he was on Real’s preseason tour of the USA, and will now agree personal terms and undergo a medical before linking up with Antonio Conte‘s team who are currently on their preseason tour of China and Singapore.
“This is the best club,” Morata told Sky Sports. “Antonio Conte is one of the best coaches in the world and I’m so happy to work with Antonio.”
He was then asked how close he came to joining Manchester United, who chased Morata all summer, but the Spaniard said he had no idea how close that deal was and that “the most important thing is I’m here playing for Chelsea. Finally I’m here.”
Chelsea now have a predatory forward to replace Diego Costa who will surely leave this summer and re-join Atletico Madrid after falling out with Conte.
Having Chelsea’s boss commit his future to the Blues with a new two-year deal he signed on Tuesday clearly played a big factor in Morata joining, as the man who took him to Juventus in 2014 helped him to develop into a true center forward.
Morata’s movement, power, aerial ability and clinical finishing means he will slot perfectly into this Chelsea team and he’s already saying all the right things.
The West’s first place team is switching it up in a big way.
FC Dallas is sending Homegrown Player and USMNT midfielder Kellyn Acosta to Western foes Colorado Rapids in exchange for striker Dominique Badji, according to a report by The Dallas Morning News.
[ MORE: Pulisic rips up Liverpool ]
Acosta, 22, has 17 caps and a goal for the U.S., and is primarily a defensive midfielder. He’s also played right and left back.
He’s appeared 139 times for Dallas, scoring 13 times with nine assists, but had fallen out with head coach Oscar Pareja. He’s also struggled mightily on the field, according to WhoScored.
Badji, 25, has seven goals and three assists in 16 matches for the Rapids this season, building on an eight-goal, five-assist campaign last season.
FCD has gotten six goals out of forward Maxi Urruti, and there’s been little production from anyone else. Cristian Colman is out with an ankle injury and managed just a pair of goals in 399 minutes.
The risk of trading Acosta is mitigated by the continued speculation that he may test the waters of European soccer. Badji’s a quality player, but Colorado may’ve gotten a bargain in its push to escape the dregs of the West.
Minnesota United throttled LAFC on Sunday, using a Christian Ramirez brace to batter the hot expansion team 5-1 in Minnesota.
Darwin Quintero had a goal and two assists for the Loons, who took advantage of LAFC’s decision not to start dominant forward Adama Diomande and center back Walker Zimmerman.
[ MORE: Marketing Pulisic with BVB ]
Quintero ripped off seven shots, putting five on goal. He now has 10 goals and five assists since joining the Loons after scoring two and eight in 29 matches for Club America last year.
Miguel Ibarra recorded a goal and an assist, while Rasmus Schuller also scored. LAFC’s goal came courtesy Benny Feilhaber.
Minnesota’s Bobby Shuttleworth and LA’s Tyler Miller each made six saves in their goals.
LAFC fails in a bid to make up points on Western Conference first seed FC Dallas, while the Loons now can eye a playoff spot in the West.
Liverpool’s 3-1 loss to Borussia Dortmund featured an injury to a position with very little depth.
The Reds lost Joel Matip to what Jurgen Klopp said could possibly be a “small tear” in one of his quads.
[ MORE: Marketing Pulisic with BVB ]
If Matip, 26, needs any significant time to heal up, he’ll put a major question mark into Liverpool’s opening day center back pairing.
Virgil Van Dijk, who scored against BVB on Sunday, already won’t have Dejan Lovren as a partner thanks to a post-World Cup vacation.
That leaves Joe Gomez and Ragnar Klavan as options next to Van Dijk.
Matches at Crystal Palace and home to Brighton and Hove Albion follow the Aug. 12 visit from West Ham.
Guingamp captain Jimmy Briand is making the move from Ligue 1 to Major League Soccer.
The French side announced that the 32-year-old, capped five times by France between 28-32, is coming to the Montreal Impact.
[ MORE: Pulisic rolls over Liverpool ]
Briand spent time with Lyon and Hannover after a eight-year stint with Rennes, where he was teammates with former USMNT captain Carlos Bocanegra.
The center forward scored 11 goals last season in France, including markers against Paris Saint-Germain and Monaco.
Briand could provide a big missing piece of Montreal’s attack. The Impact have playmakers in Ignacio Piatti and Saphir Taidir, but haven’t found much from their forwards.