Transfer Rumor Roundup

Transfer news: Saint-Maximin in demand, Norwich back to German giants

Saint-Maximin to PSG
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The Sunday morning papers are helping the transfer rumor mill buzz after a weekend of matches in Europe.

[ MORE: Pulisic reacts to Hazard comparisons ]

Newcastle is mentioned as a home for several players but the biggest Magpies name is one linked with a departure to big, big clubs.

Saint-Maximin to PSG, PL big boys

Newcastle supporters, avert your eyes and trust Steve Bruce (What a sentence and maybe a mantra).

Magpies talisman Allan Saint-Maximin has caught the eye of everyone on Tyneside and most of the Premier League but is being linked with a big money move back home.

Steve Bruce is flat-out denying there’s any chance of selling the Frenchman, 23, who is being linked with Paris Saint-Germain and “all of England’s current top six sides.”

“ASM” has four goals and seven assists in 25 appearances entering Sunday morning’s match versus West Ham and is one of just three players to average more than four dribbles per game, his 4.7 sandwiched between Adama Traore (5) and Wilfried Zaha (4.5).

It’s not just about the numbers with Saint-Maximin, though, whose magnetic dribbling and personality keep both a defense off-balance and a team hopeful and happy. Newcastle is 1W-3D-7L in the Premier League when Saint-Maximin plays, 10-6-5 when he’s out there.

Any sale, especially with Newcastle’s takeover looming, would have to be well over the approximately $20 million paid by the Magpies last summer.

Schick to Newcastle (amongst others)

The same report lays out a more realistic shopping list for the Magpies than many of the rumors since reports emerged of a big money takeover at St. James’ Park.

Newcastle is being linked with Roma’s Patrik Schick, Nice’s Arnaud Lusamba, Benfica’s Florentino Luis, Penarol’s Facundo Pellistri, and Norwich City’s Ben Godfrey.

Let’s focus on Schick and Lusamba.

Patrick Schick Leipzig Bundesliga
DORTMUND, GERMANY – DECEMBER 17: Patrik Schick (Photo by Jörg Schüler/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Schick was once among the most sought-after names in the game. The 24-year-old Czech striker has nine goals in 22 caps for his country.

Three seasons removed from his breakout season at Sampdoria, Schick has profound his footing on loan to RB Leipzig from Roma. The center forward has 10 goals in 22 matches despite Timo Werner carrying the water in fine fashion for Julian Nagelsmann’s Leipzig.

Like Saint-Maximin last season, Lusamba has been in- and out-of-favor with Nice boss Patrick Vieira. But it’s worth noting that the manager has tried to find a place on the pitch for the 23-year-old center midfielder, deploying him at center forward and right mid at times.

Lusamba averaged 1.2 key passes and 1.3 dribbles per Ligue 1 appearances this season.

Godfrey to Borussia Dortmund

Speaking of Godfrey, could he be going from the bottom of the Premier League table to the upper reaches of Germany? For close to $30 million, to boot?

Two of the Bundesliga’s top clubs continue to monitor top young Premier League talent including the aforementioned Godfrey, with Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig eyeing the 22-year-old.

A center back in Norwich’s maligned and injury-battered defense, England youth international Godfrey has played the seventh-most minutes for Daniel Farke’s Canaries.

Relegation victims have often yielded incredible value for bigger clubs, two great cases in point being ex-Hull City man Andrew Robertson and former Aston Villa force Idrissa Gana Gueye. We don’t need to tell you where they wound up.

Transfer news: Grealish to Man City, Balogun to leave Arsenal

Grealish to Manchester City
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The transfer rumor mill hums along Tuesday with a gossip mainstay dominating the terms.

VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Also in the news is an Arsenal teen who has represented both the United States and England at youth international levels.

It’s all going down in the wizarding world of the transfer buzz.

Grealish to Manchester United

Jack Grealish’s agent is busy or there’s news on the horizon.

Or maybe he’s busy buying real estate and people are drawing conclusions.

The 24-year-old Aston Villa star is being linked with moves to both sides of Manchester.

The Express says that Grealish has already found a new place to live and is “edging close” to a move to Old Trafford, though certainly any weird house talk could connect him to any club in Manchester.

Grealish could give United an incredible attack, a clear upgrade from young Daniel James. United has also been said to be chasing Jadon Sancho.

Can you imagine a United attack that incorporates Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, Paul Pogba, Bruno Fernandes, Jadon Sancho, and Jack Grealish (let alone young Mason Greenwood and James)? No? Then something will have to give.

Grealish to Manchester City

Pep Guardiola is looking to Grealish to replace Leroy Sane should City sell the wantaway German this summer, says TalkSport.

The biggest question would be whether Grealish, who has plenty of suitors, would choose to spend his prime with a club who could miss up to two years of European football.

There’s a comparison to be made to what Guardiola did with Riyad Mahrez, who was the man at Leicester City albeit with better accolades. Perhaps even with Raheem Sterling, too.

There were certainly be some adjustment to not “being the man,” but Guardiola has plenty of experience with that.

WhoScored.com

Balogun leaving Arsenal

There’s been a lot of talk at Arsenal about Bukayo Saka’s future as the winger-turned-left back nears the final year of his contract.

But there’s another talented Gunners teenager with a year left on his deal, one with American connections.

New York-born Folarin Balogun, 18, has represented England and the United States at youth levels, the U.S. at U-18 and England at U-17, U-18, and U-19.

Balogun has 10 goals and four assists in 15 Premier League 2 matches this season. He made the bench for a League Cup blowout of Nottingham Forest but did not make his senior debut.

Arsenal is said to be talking with Balogun about a new deal but some reports say he’ll be leaving the club this summer. If so, he’ll have plenty of suitors. The Gunners have a lot of good young attacking talent but, as we’ve seen with Jadon Sancho at Man City and now Borussia Dortmund, choosing who to let walk is a tightrope walk.

Transfer news: Red Bulls in for ex-Newcastle man; Latest on Hojbjerg

Toney to New York Red Bulls
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Are the New York Red Bulls following their old playbook in search of a new star striker?

Peterborough Today says RBNY bid around $5 million plus add-ons to try to pry striker Ivan Toney from League One side Peterborough United.

The bid is less than half the asking price for Toney, according to the report, who has also been linked with Celtic.

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Toney, 24, saw his way to Premier League side Newcastle United after scoring eight goals for League Two’s Northampton Town in 2014-15, but made just four appearances for the Magpies and made five loan stints before being sold to the Posh.

He’s scored 49 times in two seasons, drawing the interest of many in England and, obviously, abroad.

Bradley Wright-Phillips is RBNY’s leading scorer. Now at LAFC, BWP’s only double-digit goal seasons before coming to MLS were with League One sides Plymouth Argyle and Charlton Athletic.

The Posh think they can get a better deal for the English striker and they may be right, coronavirus market pending, but you can see why the move is appealing to an RBNY side without a proven center forward.

VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Tottenham Hotspur is a potential landing spot for Southampton wantaway Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, who handed in his captain’s armband this week at the request of manager Ralph Hasenhuttl.

Football.London says Saints have received three offers for Hojbjerg and that Spurs have offered Saints a player-plus-cash deal for the 24-year-old ex-Bayern Munich and Schalke man.

Hojbjerg reportedly enjoys Southampton but wants a move to a club participating in European competition.

He’s been linked with Spurs for some time, but who would they send back the other way if Saints were willing to listen to the idea?

Kyle Walker-Peters is currently on loan to the St. Mary’s outfit from Spurs, but it’s challenging to predict who might not be wanted by Jose Mourinho yet deemed impactful by Hasenhuttl.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Transfer rumor roundup: Gotze available on free transfer; Saul to Man Utd

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Borussia Dortmund hero Mario Gotze will be looking for a new home this summer, announced BVB sporting director Michael Zorc.

Gotze, 27, has played 20 times this season with three goals and an assist, and of course is known for his World Cup-winning goal for Germany against Argentina.

[ MORE: Bundesliga rising stars ]

He was linked with Everton last month, with West Ham, Gladbach, and AC Milan also connected in that Bild report.

The target forward also can handle attacking midfield duties but has struggled to keep a consistent spot in the Starting XI at Dortmund and Bayern over the past few years.

A BVB youth, Gotze connected for 41 goals and 45 assists in first five seasons between Germany’s top two sides, but posted just 16 and 16 in the next five (though he had seven goals and seven assists last season.

It’s clear Dortmund has a monster at center forward in Erling Haaland, whose release clause won’t be active for another two years according to reports.

Gotze’s younger brother Felix is also at Augsburg, having left Bayern Munich in 2018.


A report out of Spain claims that the oft-rumored Saul Niguez to Manchester United move is “practically done.”

The news was shared and translated by The Manchester Evening News, who points out that the Atletico Madrid hero’s release clause is well into nine figures at $168 million.

Saul, 25, has become an indispensable part of Diego Simeone’s midfield and was one of the steadiest parts of Atleti’s victory over Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League.

Saul, Koke, and Thomas Partey give Atleti three of the best central midfielders in the world, and United would see a similar threesome between Saul, Bruno Fernandes, and Scott McTominay or Fred.

Transfer rumor roundup: Weghorst loves Liverpool, Estupinan in demand

Transfer rumor roundup
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From the Netherlands to Germany and now, just maybe, England, Wout Weghorst has held a flame for one Premier League club.

That’s not news, as the Wolfsburg free scorer has spoken up his love for Liverpool in the past.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Well now the 27-year-old is angling for a move to the Premier League as he restarts his second season in Germany with 33 goals and 12 assists in 70 matches so far.

Will his beloved Reds answer the bell? Who knows, but he’s not being shy about it so we should assume Everton and Manchester United may not enter into the equation should Jurgen Klopp lack interest.

From Goal.com:

“I always found Liverpool very special. I still get goosebumps from ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’. There are other great English clubs too, and I always liked Milan because so many Dutch played there. I am ambitious and want to get ahead. Maybe at some point play at another club, whether in Germany or in England? But at the moment it is still far away. I feel good and try to achieve the maximum here.”

Wolfsburg opens play Saturday at Augsburg, and the club is in shouting distance of a return to European football. Wolfsburg is a point back of sixth-place Schalke, and seventh place will likely be a European spot if Bayern Munich, Borussia Monchengladbach, or Bayer Leverkusen win the German Cup and avoid a precipitous drop below sixth.

Watford may have a hot commodity on its hands, if indeed they are willing to sell left back Pervis Estupinan.

Once-capped by Ecuador, the 22-year-old has impressed on loan to Osasuna in La Liga. He has a goal and three assists this season, averaging 1.3 key passes and 1.9 successful dribbles per outing. Defensively, he has averaged 2.7 tackles, 1.8 interceptions, 1.5 clearances (WhoScored).

Estupinan was in the Watford family since 2016, having left Quito for Udinese, who is owned by the father of Watford owner Gino Pozzo.

This is his fourth loan away, having spent time with Granada, Almeria, and Mallorca.

A report by the Sport Witness says Manchester United is hoping to purchase the player from Watford and loan him elsewhere in England for more experience.

Left back is an in-demand spot almost anywhere, so Estupinan may want to try his hand at impressing a new boss at Watford or any of the other suitors linked in the report: Barcelona, Spurs, and Atletico Madrid.

The price tag is said to be around $8 million, and that seems like it could be a good value even if the plan is for well into the future.