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Transfer Rumor Roundup: Everton, Spurs, and Man United

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With the transfer window shutting in just five days, a number of rumors that have seen constant play over the past few weeks seem to be thinning, but a few teams continue to add ahead of Deadline Day.

Everton is one of the latter, and the Toffees appear close to securing a highly coveted young player who could come in and help immediately. Juventus striker Moise Kean is on his way to Goodison Park, according to Gianluca Di Marzio staffer Fabrizio Romano.

Kean has been linked to Everton for quite a while but it seemed Juventus was keen to keep him around with Mario Mandzukic aging and Gonzalo Higuain coming off a poor loan spell at Chelsea. With Paulo Dybala also linked with an exit, it’s odd that Juventus would be willing to green-light the sale of Kean, but it seems his time in Turin could be coming to an end.

The 19-year-old would be a fabulous addition for Everton who boasts just Cenk Tosun, Oumar Niasse, and Dominic Calvert-Lewin at striker. Kean scored six goals in 13 Serie A appearances last season, seeing most of his time coming at the end of the campaign, bagging all six of his scores through March and April, earning a spot in Italy’s squad and scoring twice in March Euro qualifiers.


Manchester United may have sealed a move for Harry Maguire, making the Leicester City defender the most expensive in the world, but they could be sweating another signing as Paulo Dybala has reportedly told Juventus he has no interest in moving to Old Trafford.

According to Gazzetta dello Sport, passed on by Football Italia, Dybala is involved in a proposed swap deal for Romelu Lukaku, and while all agreements are completed, Dybala does not wish to move to Manchester United, putting the entire deal at risk.

The reason, in the report, is that United’s style does not suit the Argentine and that he wishes for a more attacking team like Paris Saint-Germain or Inter. Dyaba, according to the report, has not yet spoken to head coach Maurizio Sarri about his role in the team, but he has appeared in at least 30 games in all of his four seasons at thee club, so he figures to be an important player for The Old Lady this season.


Like Manchester United, Tottenham could also miss out on a target, although this could represent a much bigger miss for Spurs on a player they have been linked to for over a year.

Fulham hybrid wide player Ryan Sessegnon was thought to be headed to Spurs from the start of the summer, a player who has been linked to the Champions League finalists since at least last summer. The transfer, however, has dragged on with Fulham looking to secure top dollar for their teenage star.

Sessegnon had a poor season last campaign in his first full Premier League season, looking out of depth at times in top flight matches. Still, he is two seasons removed from his 16 goal, eight assist Championship campaign that saw him nominated for PFA Young Player of the Year and is a player that has enamored Tottenham since his early teenage years.

The question surrounding Sessegnon currently is the status of Danny Rose, who Spurs has reportedly tried to sell all summer to no avail and whose roster status could affect the purchase of Sessegnon, rumors have suggested. Rose has finally rejoined the squad for the end of preseason after skipping the Asia tour and the possibility he starts the season with the club is growing every passing day. Still, according to the London Evening Standard, the two transactions for now remain separate.

Will Spurs pull the trigger? Fulham boss Scott Parker thinks time is running out, saying, “Obviously I have read the speculation. Will it affect him? That would be up to Ryan.  It is not as if the phone has been ringing off the hook, a bid every other day for him and Fulham are turning it down, for him to have the hump.  I had this too as a young player. But if there is one good thing about the transfer window it is that come 5 o’clock next week when the door shuts, he can’t go anywhere.”

Sessegnon has a hamstring injury that has left him out of Fulham’s preseason preparations, and it remains to be seen whether he will continue as a White, having rebuffed all contract negotiations with the club to this point.


Ajax midfielder Donny van de Beek was one of the Dutch side’s more underrated players during the Champions League run last season. Matthijs de Ligt and Frenkie de Jong received many of the plaudits, but the creative van de Beek was one of their best attacking players all season long.

Despite less transfer rumor noise than his more popular teammates, the 22-year-old attacking midfielder confirmed he has been the subject of interest from Real Madrid.“Yes, Real Madrid are interested in me, but you are going very fast,” van de Beek said in his pre-match media obligations ahead of the club’s season opener against Vitesse tomorrow. “I don’t want to talk about what’s there or what is not, now I want to be focused on the match (for Ajax) against Vitesse.”

Over the last two Eredivisie seasons, van de Beek has made 68 league appearances, scoring 20 goals and assisting 16 more. Most impressively, he was spectacular in the latter stages of the Champions League against the biggest clubs in the world, scoring goals against Juventus and Tottenham while picking up assists in games against Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.

Season restart preview: Brighton and Hove Albion

Brighton season restart
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With the 2019-20 Premier League season soon to restart, let’s focus on all 20 clubs and see where they stand ahead of the final nine matches of the season.

Brighton is next.

[ MORE: Remaining PL schedule in full ]

Let’s take a closer look at all things Seagulls when it comes to the season restart.


Outlook: If there’s a team whose results don’t show the way they’ve played, it’s Brighton. Graham Potter’s Seagulls have the sixth-best possession percentage in the league, are a tidy seventh in passing, and are mid-table in tackles per game, interceptions per game, and shots per game.

[ MORE: Ranking every Brighton player in 2019-20 ]

The expected goals stats show even less reward for good work, with Brighton scoring 8.35 goals less than expected in open play and 4.38 less from corner kicks.

Despite all these good things, Brighton is two points clear of the drop zone with nine matches to play and has a terribly challenging schedule especially at the Amex Stadium.


Tactical analysis: Graham Potter has put the Seagulls in myriad formations this season, though he’s been utilizing at least four at the back since the calendar turned to 2020. He’s ready to attack but pragmatic given the club’s hopes of staving off the teams below it in the fight for PL survival.

[ MORE: The 2 Robbies assess Brighton’s chances ]


Possible XI (4-2-3-1) 

—– Ryan —–

— Montoya — Webster — Dunk — Burn —

—– Propper —– Mooy —–

— Trossard — Gross — Alzate —

—– Maupay—–

Glenn Murray and Alireza Jahanbakhsh are excellent weapons to have on the bench, and Brighton’s also got a very good center back in reserve in the form of Shame Duffy and an underrated center mid in Dale Stephens who will see playing time, too. On paper, this team is too good to go down.


[ STREAM: Every PL match live ]

Remaining schedule
Home: Arsenal, Man City, Liverpool, Manchester United, Newcastle
Away: Leicester, Norwich, Southampton, Burnley

Predicted finish: They’ll do enough to get by, though that home fixture list is simply brutal. Safe before the final weekend.

Social media wrap: All 20 Premier League clubs, many players stand against racism

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The protests in the United States have inspired anti-racism statements from around the world, including all gestures from all 20 Premier League clubs and many players and managers.

There have been ongoing protests and horrible violence in the U.S. since the May 25 killing of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who died after a white police officer pressed his knee into his neck for nearly nine minutes even after he stopped moving and pleaded for air in Minnesota.

Newcastle United’s American defender DeAndre Yedlin issued an emotional thread (below) as one of a great deal of players to express hopes for change and solidarity, while Schalke’s Weston McKennie explained his wearing a black armband reading “Justice For George” in the Bundesliga this weekend.

[ MORE: Remaining PL schedule in full ]

From Ancelotti to Zaha, Antonio to Yedlin, Arsenal to Wolves, we’ve collected many of their sentiments below in what we hope serves as universal disdain for racial prejudice.

Some players like Leicester City’s Wes Morgan and even entire clubs (Arsenal) changed their online identity photos to reflect these troubled times.

All PL clubs issued messages of solidarity, many using the Black Lives Matter hashtag and making no bones about where they stand.

And we’ll start with a longtime PL club currently in the Championship, who blasted a season ticket holder’s rejection of their unifying Tweet.

Here are some other clubs and players worldwide to have noticed what’s happening in the United States.

 

Season restart preview: Bournemouth

Bournemouth season restart
Photo by Robin Jones - AFC Bournemouth/AFC Bournemouth via Getty Images
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With the 2019-20 Premier League season soon to restart, let’s focus on all 20 clubs and see where they stand ahead of the final nine matches of the season.

[ MORE: Remaining PL schedule in full ]

Let’s take a closer look at all things Bournemouth when it comes to the season restart.


Outlook: Tough sledding for the Cherries, who face zero of their fellow bottom-six sides (though 13th place Newcastle and 14th place Saints both visit the Vitality Stadium).

There’s been an element of bad luck to Bournemouth’s woes, with its expected goals stats showing Ryan Fraser, Joshua King, and Callum Wilson have deserved better end product and that the Cherries’ 14 goals from open play should be closer to 22. The defense has been bad and xG says it could’ve been worse, too. Injuries had hit Bournemouth’s defense corps in a big way, too. How much better will they be after the break?

[ MORE: Ranking every Cherries player in 2019-20 ]


Tactical analysis: Eddie Howe utilized a 4-4-2 with two defensive midfielders for much of the early season, but has gone between a lone striker with a packed-in midfielder and a 4-3-3 when he thinks an opponent is exploitable.

Howe started a 4-4-2 against almost all of the Cherries’ remaining opponents, choosing a 5-4-1 against Wolves and Man City. There’s no guarantee he’ll continue that, especially when some matches may dictate a draw or limited goal differential damage over wins.


Possible XI (4-3-3) 

—– Ramsdale —–

— Smith — S. Cook — Ake — Rico —

—– Lerma —– Billing — L. Cook —

— Fraser —– C. Wilson —– King —–

Howe prefers to attack when at all possible, but the points will be at a premium against some very challenging opponents. It’s a safe bet that he’ll ask a lot from his forwards while trying to deploy his three relentless midfielders together whenever possible. The question here is whether Aaron Ramsdale returns quickly from his COVID-19 positive test, or if it’ll be Artur Boruc or someone else between the sticks.


[ STREAM: Every PL match live ]

Remaining schedule
Home: Crystal Palace, Newcastle, Spurs, Leicester City, Southampton
Away: Wolves, Manchester United, Man City, Everton

Predicted finish: The Cherries stay up, just, as King and Callum Wilson deliver the goods in front of a determined and improved midfield.

Premier League clubs will reportedly be allowed preseason friendlies

Premier League return
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Premier League clubs will be allowed to play preseason matches ahead of the 2019-20’s restart season later this month.

There will be strict protocols due to the coronavirus pandemic, however, and the matches will likely be officiated by club coaching staffs (We have so many Jose Mourinho as ref quips to make here, but let’s keep going anyway).

[ MORE: Remaining PL schedule in full ]

Sky Sports says clubs will be limited to opponents within 90 minutes of their venue, and that players will have to drive themselves to the stadiums and go directly to the field in uniform.

With the League One and League Two seasons still hanging in the balance, it’s likely PL sides will be limited to each other and Championship sides. Presumably clubs will not want to meet others still on their fixture list.

We assume some players will get dressed in their vehicles outside the ground, but allow yourself some levity in these challenging times and imagine a fully kitted-up Virgil van Dijk driving the roads from Liverpool to Wigan Athletic.