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Transfer rumor roundup: Wilson, Paredes to Chelsea; Babel to Fulham

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Chelsea continue to be linked with multiple strikers and midfielders as Maurizio Sarri aims to keep their top four challenge on track.

With Cesc Fabregas sold to Monaco, Alvaro Morata linked with a move away in January and Sarri is desperate need of a new presence in attack, The Star say that Bournemouth will accept offers of $95 million for star striker Callum Wilson. It was believed Chelsea are willing to pay up to $75 million for Wilson.

Wilson, 26, has recently broken into the England national team and has scored 10 times this season for the Cherries as his remarkable return to form after two major knee injuries has been wonderful to see. His ability to make clever runs in-behind and hold up the ball will no doubt suit Eden Hazard down to the ground, and it will give Sarri something he doesn’t have as Morata and Olivier Giroud are statuesque in comparison to Wilson.

West Ham and Wolves are also said to be in the hunt for Wilson, but Bournemouth will surely only sell him to Chelsea as Eddie Howe and the hierarchy at the club must accept the magnitude of this move for a player who battled his way through the lower leagues to the top of the game.


Chelsea have also been linked with a move for Zenit midfielder Leandro Paredes, with the Argentine causing quite a stir on social media.

He appeared to retweet a video saying ‘welcome to Chelsea’ before undoing that action, but Sarri has been clear he wants his club to sign a replacement for Fabregas and Paredes, 24, would fit the bill.

The Boca Juniors product is a playmaker in the Fabregas mold and although this may not be good news for Ross Barkley or Ruben Loftus-Cheek, it is believed Chelsea have made a $35 million bid for Paredes and the deal is moving forward. Nicolo Barella is another target but he is believed to want to stay at Cagliari, so all eyes are on Paredes who will give Chelsea an alternative to Jorginho as a deep-lying playmaker.


Staying in west London, Fulham appear to be closing in on a loan move for Dutch winger Ryan Babel.

De Telegraaf say that Babel will arrive at Craven Cottage initially on loan until the end of the season, as Claudio Ranieri needs help for Aleksandar Mitrovic and Andre Schurrle in attack as Fulham battle against relegation.

The former Liverpool winger, now 32 years old, has had a resurgence in recent months and has found himself back in the Dutch national team as well as scoring 22 goals in 62 games for Turkish side Besiktas since he arrived in Istanbul in 2017.

Babel is a lively character and someone who will help to lift any gloom building at Fulham, but his nomadic career since he left Liverpool suggests this is a gamble. Given the situation the Cottagers are in, it is probably one worth taking.

Own goals gift Burnley big win over Fulham (video)

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  • Schurrle scores 2nd minute masterpiece (video)
  • Fulham produces two own goals in three minutes
  • Clarets win third-straight (West Ham, Huddersfield, Fulham)

Burnley inspired a pair of Fulham own goals to come back for a 2-1 defeat of Fulham at Turf Moor on Saturday.

The win gives the Clarets three-straight, and pushes them three points clear of the drop zone.

Andre Schurrle scored a beautiful goal for the Cottagers, who tossed aside the lead and remains 19th with 14 points. That’s five points behind 17th place.

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Denis Odoi set up Schurrle for the opener, though it may be generous to call the very decent pass a set up considering the German’s work in crafting a beauty.

Schurrle’s perfect run settled Odoi’s arrow over the top of the Burnley defense with one touch before taking the ball off the volley and sending Clarets goalkeeper Tom Heaton in shoulder shrug country. A stunner.

But Fulham gave that goal back and then another for good measure, both via own goals. Burnley’s Jeff Hendrick inspired the first with a 20th minute blast that turned off Joe Bryan and past Sergio Rico, and three minutes later it was 2-1 when Odoi.

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Lucas Vietto was in prime position to level the score in the 51st minute after Aleksandar Mitrovic won a header into his path. He beat Heaton, but James Tarkowski somehow kept the ball away from goal with a prone and fortunate goal line clearance.

Chris Wood took a knockdown from Ashley Barnes and hit just over the bar, the advantage staying at one.

At the other end, Vietto’s cross through the box took a deflection wide for a corner kick and Tim Ream‘s header across goal was absent receiver.

Watch: Schurrle paints masterpiece with run, touch, rocket (video)

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In a big spot for his club, Andre Schurrle scored a goal befitting the occasion.

Given the chance to help Fulham out of the relegation zone in a six-pointer against Burnley, the German took a nice pass from Denis Odoi and produced a Goal of the Month candidate.

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With a well-timed run, Schurrle collected the ball over his shoulder and set the ball up for glory.

Burnley goalkeeper Tom Heaton, like Ron Burgundy when his dog Baxter ate the wheel of cheese, couldn’t even be mad.

Gunners school Fulham on New Year’s Day

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  • Xhaka strikes first, 25′
  • Lacazette caps team goal
  • Kamara pulls one back
  • Ramsey puts it to bed

Arsenal responded to its weekend drubbing by turning the lopsided score line on Fulham with a 4-1 win at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday.

Granit Xhaka, Alexandre Lacazette, Aaron Ramsey and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang all scored for the Gunners, who move two points back of fourth-place Chelsea.

Aboubakar Kamara scored for Fulham, who remain 19th with 14 points.

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Arsenal was on the front foot from Moment No. 1, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was closely-marked by American defender Tim Ream as he popped an Alex Iwobi pass over the goal from close range.

The visitors nearly surprised when Tom Cairney opened up Ryan Sessegnon on the counter attack, but the youngster missed the far post after beating Bernd Leno.

If Sessegnon could’ve scored the first, he should’ve scored the next: Andre Schurrle swept a gorgeous effort around the Arsenal back line but the winger totally missed the ball.

And how often do you see it? The underdogs miss a chance to go ahead, snapping the favorites into life. Xhaka was the man in the middle to push an Iwobi pass beyond the reach of Rico.

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Lacazette made it 2-0 on the business end of a terrific team goal off a throw-in. Aubameyang and Sead Kolasinac were the last two to play the ball en route to the Frenchman for his 56th minute finish.

Jean-Michael Seri cued up Mitrovic for a 69th minute chance, but the Serbian nodded right to Leno.

This time, Fulham responded to the danger by scoring. Kamara got on the end of a Sessegnon cross after Seri stole the ball and set the wheels in motion.

Ramsey restored order with a calm finish into the side netting when a loose ball came his way in the 79th minute.

Rico stayed big to block a 1v1 Aubameyang chip in the 82nd, but was defied when the same striker’s deflected shot hit the back of the net in the 83rd.

Watch Live: Arsenal vs. Fulham

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
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Andre Schurrle and Fulham hope to get their 2019 started with an upset of Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday (Watch live at 10 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com)

WATCH LIVE, ONLINE, HERE

Arsenal’s Unai Emery goes with three at the back and both Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette up top.

Fulham has American defender Tim Ream in its back line, while weekend hero Aleksandar Mitrovic starts with Schurrle and Ryan Sessegnon in attack.

LINEUPS

Arsenal: Leno, Koscielny, Mustafi, Sokratis, Maitland-Niles, Xhaka, Guendouzi, Kolasinac, Iwobi, Aubameyang, Lacazette. Subs: Cech, Lichtsteiner, Elneny, Ramsey, Torreira, Sika, Nketiah.

Fulham: Rico, Christie, Odoi, Le Marchand, Ream, Bryan, Cisse, Cairney, Schurrle, Mitrovic, Sessegnon. Subs: Bettinelli, Fosu-Mensah, Johansen, Seri, Ayite, Vietto, Kamara.