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LIVE: Transfer Deadline Day – Window closed

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The day has arrived.

Teams looking to make mid-season improvements or jettison want-away players have until 6 p.m. ET to do so, with a flurry of deals set to take place between now and then.

[MORE: Latest transfer news]

Arsenal started the day off with a bang, signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Borussia Dortmund for a record fee, and there are more deals expected to be completed today, including Olivier Giroud to Chelsea and Michy Batshuayi to Chelsea. In addition, with the World Cup six months away, some other players will be looking for a loan around Europe for more playing time.

And remember, there is a live Deadline Day show on NBCSN and online from 5 p.m. ET today which you can steam by clicking on the link below.

[STREAM: Deadline Day show]

Let’s get stuck in…

6:10 p.m. ET – The window is closed, but moves can still be announced.

Check back, and tune into our Deadline Day show for all the latest.

Situations to keep an eye on include goalkeeper Martin Dubravka to Newcastle, Benik Afobe loan away from Bournemouth, Andy King moving from Leicester City.


5:39 p.m. ET – Newcastle has apparently sealed a deal for the center forward its needed since last season:


3:30 p.m. ET – Badou Ndiaye has finally been confirmed as a member of Stoke City, the Potters fending off competition from Newcastle United for the $18 million center midfielder. The Galatasaray man’s fee is less than only one other Stoke purchase: Giannelli Imbula


2:40 p.m. ET – A day after stating he needed more experience to cope with the Premier League level, Everton has loaned Ademola Lookman to RB Leipzig in the Bundesliga. Another Englishman moving abroad this year.


2:30 p.m. ET – Here it is! Some transfer drama with just a few hours until the deadline. Lille’s captain Ibrahim Amadou has taken the train to London, hoping to sign with Crystal Palace or West Ham. But an agreement between the clubs and player has not been reached…


2:25 p.m. ET – Some transfer news to catch up on.

Official: Mathieu Debuchy completes a permanent transfer from Arsenal to AS Saint-Etienne. Arsenal also sends Krystian Bielek on loan to Walsall.

Official: Liverpool loan Ovie Ejaria to Sunderland.

Called off: Aleksandar Mitrovic‘s proposed loan to Anderlecht has fallen through, per Sky Sports.


2:10 p.m. ET – Newcastle has loaned Rolando Aarons to Hellas Verona in Serie A through the end of the season.


2:05 p.m. ET – In news that may interest some El Tri fans, Mexican centerback Hector Moreno is set to complete a move from AS Roma to Real Sociedad.


2 p.m. ET – A couple of Watford notes. Stefano Okaka is set to remain with the club, but Ben Watson is moving on-loan to Nottingham Forest FC until the end of the season.

The club also announced the signing of Swedish 19-year-old goalkeeper Pontus Dahlberg, loaning him back to IFK Goteborg through the summer.


1:56 p.m. ET – Oh look, another Arsenal player leaves on-loan. This time it’s Chuba Akpom to Sint-Truiden in Belgium.

1:50 p.m. ET – Mesut Ozil is getting in on the fun. Doesn’t look like an Arsenal contract down there though…

Had a busy day signing things. 😉 #autographs #M1Ö #London

Posted by Mesut Özil on Wednesday, January 31, 2018


1:45 p.m. ET – Another DONE DEAL! Lucas Moura is officially a member of Tottenham. And it appears this deal has been done for a while, considering how much time Moura and his teammates have had to work on their handshake routines.


1:30 p.m. ET – Well, it’s a bit of a change from the earlier reports, but the Guardian’s Jamie Jackson fills us in on the Riyad Mahrez to Manchester City saga…


1:25 p.m. ET – In case you forgot, in addition to the transfer window craziness, there’s also *SEVEN* Premier League matches tonight. Our Joe Prince-Wright is at Wembley Stadium for Tottenham vs. Manchester United. Should be a good one.


1:22 p.m. ET – With Emerson Palmieri signing for Chelsea, AS Roma has gone back to South America for a replacement left back, signing Argentine native Jonathan Silva from Sporting Lisbon for $7.5 million.


1:20 p.m. ET – Another Arsenal player is on the move. Jeff Reine-Adelaide is back in France, joining Angers on loan.

1:15 p.m. ET – L’Equipe is reporting that Tottenham is paying $34.8 million with an additional $5 million in bonuses.


1:05 p.m. ET – Looks like Michy Batshuayi is having fun in Germany already.


12:50 p.m. ET – Catching up in the Premier League…

Eliaquim Mangala has a loan deal agreed with Everton, per Sky Sports, and Watford has signed Didier Ndong on loan with an option to buy from Sunderland.


12:45 p.m. ET – Elsewhere, Atletico Madrid midfielder Augusto Fernandez has joined Chinese club Beijing Renhe and Englishman John Bostock has left RC Lens to join Bursaspor.

In addition, former Arsenal striker Niklas Bendtner has turned down a move to join Bordeaux to stay with Rosenborg in Norway.


12:30 p.m. ET – According to the Mirror, Yaya Toure has turned down big-money offers from China in order to stay in Manchester and help Man City attempt the quadruple.


12:15 p.m. ET – Where’s he headed? One day after terminating the contract of Samuel Eto'o, Turkish club Antalyaspor terminated today the contract of Samir Nasri, just six months after signing him to a two-year contract.


12:10 p.m. ET – More news of Arsenal departures. Backup right back Mathieu Debuchy is reportedly headed back to his native France to join AS Saint-Etienne.


12:05 p.m. ET – Another Done Deal: Michy Batshuayi heads to Borussia Dortmund on loan until the end of the season. That’s what we call a three-team trade.


12:03 p.m. ET – WOW. Here’s some big news. Pep Guardiola‘s attempts to sign Riyad Mahrez have been rebuffed, and it appears Man City has exited that race as it did for Alexis Sanchez.


Noon ET – Now it’s official. Another Done Deal. West Ham’s Reece Oxford is back on loan for the rest of the season with Borussia Monchengladbach.


11:50 a.m. ET – DONE DEAL. Olivier Giroud, hours after featuring for Arsenal at Swansea City, is now a Blue. Signs for Chelsea on an 18-month contract and should get more playing time.

11:45 a.m. ET – Catching up here. Watford’s Isaac Success moves away on loan to Malaga. Lewis Grabban is headed to Aston Villa in the Championship from Bournemouth, and West Ham target Leon Dendoncker didn’t take part in Anderlecht training and could be leaving the club.


11:40 a.m. ET – Interesting note here for Arsenal fans. Of course, they’ve added Henrik Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang this month alone.


11:35 a.m. ET – One to watch for the future. FC Basel announces it has promoted and signed 17-year-old Noah Okafor to a new contract and handed him the 11 shirt. Okafor scored two goals and set up four others during the group stage of the UEFA Youth League this past fall.


11:25 a.m. ET – Lucas Moura watch! The Paris Saint-Germain winger has reportedly finally completed his move to Tottenham, signing a contract this morning. Thus ends Lucas Moura watch.


11:15 a.m. ET – Lots to catch up on. Olivier Giroud’s deal from Arsenal to Chelsea is nearly complete, per many reports. Sounds like he’ll be moving for $25.5 million. In addition, there’s more reporting on Arsenal looking to sign a last-minute defender. Either David Luiz or AS Roma’s Kostas Manolas.

Lastly, our old friend Demba Ba has signed for Goztepe in Turkey.


10:50 a.m. ET – Javier Pastore, who was expected to leave as Paris Saint-Germain has to deal with the ramifications of Financial Fair Play, will be staying in Paris for the time being, per his agent.


10:37 a.m. ET – Swansea City is about to reunite the Ayew brothers. Reports are that the club is close to a deal with for Andre Ayew worth $25-28 million.


10:27 a.m. ET – Here’s some intrigue. David Luiz to Arsenal in the Olivier Giroud swap. Arsenal really taking a book out of American sports teams with their trades this window.

10:20 a.m. ET – Well well. Apparently David Moyes isn’t prepared to make Reece Oxford a part of his first-team squad. The youngster is set to move back on loan to Borussia Monchengladbach.


10:12 a.m. ET – Manchester City has reportedly made a 4th offer for Riyad Mahrez worth more than $92 million plus a player to Leicester City. Will Leicester agree to a deal today?


10:00 a.m. ET – With Slimani coming in, Aleksandar Mitrovic has been deemed surplus to requirements at Newcastle. He’s heading back to his former stomping grounds at Anderlecht.


9:54 a.m. ET – Islam Slimani watch has been going on for hours in Newcastle. He arrived on a private jet just a few minutes ago and has been whisked away to St. James’ Park for a medical ahead of signing for Newcastle. He seems happy here.


9:51 a.m. ET – Arsenal began the day with the big move, as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang finally made the switch to the Gunners. How do you think he’ll adjust to the Premier League?


9:48 a.m. ET – Sandro Ramirez’s time at Everton has likely come to an end, after just 276 minutes. He’s joined Sevilla on loan for the rest of the season.


9:41 a.m. ET – Who’s ready for the final day of the transfer window. I’m so excited I just can’t take it.

 

FIFA considering four bids to host 2023 Women’s World Cup

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FIFA has received bids from Brazil, Japan, Colombia and a joint bid from Australia and New Zealand to host the 2023 Women’s World Cup.

[ MORE: Gerrard extends contract amid strong start as Rangers boss ]

Soccer’s international governing body will now assess the bids, which will include visiting each country. Evaluations will be submitted to the FIFA Council and a vote on the host will be held at the organization’s meeting in Ethiopia next June.

Anticipated bids from South Korea and South Africa were withdrawn before Friday’s deadline.

The 2023 World Cup will feature 32 teams, up from the 24 that competed this summer at the tournament in France. The United States won its second straight World Cup title and fourth overall this year, and the event enjoyed unprecedented television viewership of 1.12 billion worldwide.

“France 2019 was certainly a watershed moment for women’s football, and now it is FIFA’s responsibility to take concrete measures to keep fostering the game’s incredible growth,” FIFA President Gianni Infantino said in a statement. “With the FIFA Women’s World Cup generating an unprecedented interest across member associations, we are ensuring that the process to select the hosts is seamless, objective, ethical and transparent. By the time the FIFA Council announces the hosts, there should be no doubt whatsoever as to why that choice was made.”

[ MORE: Ljungberg wants quick appointment of new Arsenal manager ]

The Japan Football Association has already launched a website hyping its bid, which encourages supporters to submit “My Dream of 2023” hopes for the event. Japan’s association proposes using eight stadiums, including the new National Stadium.

Japan is hosting the Olympics next summer.

Football Federation Australia and New Zealand Football announced the co-confederation bid Friday in Melbourne, just hours before the official bid book was submitted to FIFA.

“There is so much untapped potential, not just in Australia but right across Asia and the Pacific region, that I really do believe we would offer something incredibly special,” said Sam Kerr, a striker for the Matildas, Australia’s national team.

[ MORE: Lampard: Chelsea youngsters can’t worry about January transfers ]

Brazil hosted the men’s 2014 World Cup as well as the 2016 Olympics.

The Korean Football Association had initially pushed to jointly host the games with North Korea at the urging of Infantino but strained inter-Korean relations failed to realize a unified bid. South Korea, which hosted the 2002 men’s World Cup with Japan, announced its withdrawal shortly before Friday’s deadline.

South Africa, which hosted the men’s World Cup in 2014, also withdrew an expected bid.

Gerrard extends contract amid strong start as Rangers boss

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Steven Gerrard is quite keen to stick around as Rangers boss following a strong start to his managerial career, leading the 39-year-old first-time manager to sign a two-year contract extension on Friday.

[ MORE: Ljungberg wants quick appointment of new Arsenal manager ]

With his current contract previously set to run through the 2021-22 season, Gerrard’s services have been secured until the summer of 2024.

Gerrard has been largely successful since taking over the Scottish Premiership side last summer, guiding Rangers to their highest points total (78) since returning to the first division in 2016, and a second-place finish (also for the first time) behind rivals Celtic. Rangers reached the Europa League’s round of 32 on Thursday, marking their first trip to the knockout round of European competition since 2011.

That much success so quickly will undoubtedly lead to Gerrard’s name being linked with increasingly large jobs in England, likely prompting Rangers to act preemptively.

“I’m delighted to be extending my stay at this fantastic football club. When the chairman approached me about the possibility of extending my contract with Rangers, it was a very easy decision to make because I’m very happy and feel that we are building something special together at the club.

“I’d like to thank the board for the backing they have given me already in my time at the club and also most importantly, the Rangers fans who have given me and the team such tremendous backing both this season and last.”

Ljungberg wants quick appointment of new Arsenal manager

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Freddie Ljungberg is honored to serve as Arsenal’s interim manager following Unai Emery’s dismissal, but the Swede is also hoping for a speedy conclusion to the club’s search for a permanent replacement.

[ MORE: Lampard: Chelsea youngsters can’t worry about January transfers ]

In theory, taking over the most famous club for which Ljungberg played was a no-brainer. In practice, though, he openly admits it’s been not only a difficult time for everyone emotionally, but also in terms of the staff members available to assist him during the day-to-day grind. Throw in the fact he has no idea whether or not he’ll still have a role at the club when the new manager arrives, and it’s beginning to sound like a no-win situation. Perhaps he’s being considered to remain in the job permanently, but Ljungberg says he’s been given no indication of any such thing — quotes from the Guardian:

“The club have said I have to wait until they make a decision, so I can’t do anything at the moment. I have Per [Mertesacker] but at the same time he is academy manager. He is helping me with the coaching. The club has said when they make a decision then that’s it — or I’m leaving, obviously — and maybe then we can do something with the staff. But it’s up to the club.

“If you look at the person who was here before, he had a lot of staff and maybe I don’t have so many. So if you keep on going like that for months and months, it’s not so easy. But that’s totally up to the club.”

“I haven’t got any indication of if I’m here or not. What I’ve said to the bosses and the club is I will do everything in my power to do as well as I can for this club and the players. Then obviously it is up to them to make a decision. I try not to put any emotions into that.”

Arsenal came back from a goal down (twice) to draw Norwich City in Ljungberg’s first game in charge, then the Gunners were comprehensively beaten (at home) by Brighton & Hove Albion. The bounced back with a win over West Ham United on Monday, but could only draw Standard Liege (albeit with a weakened team) in the Europa League on Thursday.

Lampard: Chelsea youngsters can’t worry about January transfers

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Frank Lampard knows it’s only natural that some of Chelsea’s youngsters will have worries about the January transfer window and the Blues’ newfound ability to sign players, considering they were only afforded a first-team opportunity by the club’s transfer ban.

[ PL Preview: Chelsea v. Bournemouth ]

He doesn’t, however, want those thoughts and fears to dominate their thoughts for the next three weeks, until the window opens and Chelsea can sign players for the first time since January of this year. As Lampard sees it, the fact he has roughly $200 million to inject into the squad doesn’t necessarily mean they promising teenagers and early-20-somethings will immediately be cast aside. It does, however, mean he has to navigate this very unique set of circumstances extra carefully — quotes from the Guardian:

“I haven’t banned the talk [about the January window], but I am not going to set out to engage in it. If players want to come and see me and talk then I will happily have a conversation with them individually, but that hasn’t happened.

“I speak to them regularly. I can be, not hard on them, but I push them because I think they need that. I think they feel the trust I have in them because they know I’m prepared to give them the opportunities if they train well and they come in the team and play well. I think they should naturally feel a little bit of tension all the time so that’s not the worst thing.

“They just need to work and believe in their own talents because their talent is there for all to see. We also have to be patient with that because it may take different periods of time for them to fully blossom as players. They might have a period in and out of the team, have a run of the games and then not. I am prepared to stick with them through that because I really believe in them.”

22-year-old Tammy Abraham currently sits second in the race for the Premier League Golden Boot with 11 goals in 15 appearances. 21-year-old Christian Pulisic, while not an academy product, has shone brightly of late with a half-dozen goals and nearly as many assists to his name in the last two months. 20-year-old Mason Mount was a surprising revelation in the season’s opening weeks. 21-year-old defender Fikayo Tomori has been a regular starter for the last three months. 20-year-old Reece James has made the starting job at right back his own.

While the temptation to sign high-priced replacements for these budding stars will be hard to resist, perhaps Chelsea would be wiser to sign players in other positions and ride the wave of what could turn out to be a golden generation of homegrown products.