YET MORE DEFENDERS LINKED WITH ARSENAL, BUT EVANS IS A NO
Arsenal have targeted a move for West Brom defender Jonny Evans, but Albion will refuse to sell him, according to The Sun. The finer details in the report are brief but the Gunners have apparently been told that a bid of £16million for the former Manchester United defender, 28, will not be enough.
Evans signed for West Brom from Man United last summer for £6million and Tony Pulis is eager to keep hold of the Northern Ireland international with just two weeks of the transfer window remaining.
Arsene Wenger is desperate to strengthen his defence with Per Mertesacker (knee) out for five months, Gabriel (ankle) for eight weeks, while Laurent Koscielny is not match-fit.Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi is understood to be Wenger’s top target, but Thursday brings yet more names to the table.
Fenerbahce’s Denmark international defender Simon Kjaer is also apparently Wenger’s radar, while he has apparently been priced out of a move for Atletico Madrid’s Jose Gimenez. France Football say Fabian Schar of Hoffenheim and Monaco’s Marcel Tisserand have also emerged as two possibilities for the Gunners.
Just bloody sign one.
MILAN INTERESTED IN MARKOVIC
We really wanted things to work out for Lazar Markovic at Liverpool. The winger struggled in his first season, occasionally played out of position and regularly left out of Brendan Rodgers’ team, but there remains an excellent young player. He’s still only 22.
Still, it looks like Jurgen Klopp is prepared to let Markovic go, with Sadio Mane and Sheyi Ojo proving enough on the wings.
In the Daily Express, Paul Joyce – who has excellent contacts on all things Liverpool – writes that Milan are interested in signing Markovic, which would be a good move for the Serbian. One complication must surely be the shoulder injury suffered by Mane.
£60M FOR KOULIBALY? BLOODY HELL
With each passing week we are given another reminder of just how warped the transfer market is from our expectations of the norm. Jordon Ibe for £15m? Gonzalo Higuain for £75m? Brad Smith for £6m? How about Kalidou Koulibaly for £60m?
The Daily Telegraph’s Jason Burt writes that Chelsea have made a club record offer for the Napoli central defender, with Antonio Conte very keen to solve the gaps in his defence.
That would make Koulibaly comfortably the most expensive defender in the history of the game. We can’t state this strongly enough: He’s *just* a pretty decent defender.
AND THE REST
Hertha Berlin are considering a bid for 21-year-old Arsenal and Germany midfielder Serge Gnabry… West Brom are hopeful of signing 23-year-old winger Jeff Schlupp from Leicester City, despite being told he will not be leaving this summer… Sam Allardyce has rejected an offer from the FA to dictate the playing style and tactics of England’s junior teams… Antonio Conte has instructed Eden Hazard to put on more muscle to help him regain the form that led to him winning the PFA Player of the Year and the Footballer of the Year awards the season before last… Liandro Martis, a 20-year-old forward who had a trial with Manchester United, is to sign for Premier League rivals Leicester City…. Adama Traore has told Aston Villa boss Roberto Di Matteo he wants to quit the club.
Middlesbrough are considering a new bid for Hull centre-back Harry Maguire… Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp could turn to Porto centre-back Bruno Martins Indi… Leeds United are set to sign 25-year-old Torino centre-back Pontus Jansson… David Moyes has turned to the Championship as he looks to bolster his Sunderland squad, with his attentions focused on Nottingham Forest’s Britt Assombalonga… Derby County and Fulham are both hoping to sign 20-year-old Manchester United striker James Wilson… Benfica, Sevilla and Valencia are keen to sign Liverpool’s 23-year-old midfielder Luis Alberto… Turkish club Trabzonspor are interested in 23-year-old Tottenham defender DeAndre Yedlin.