Until Thursday, the name Éder Militão was hardly familiar to us. By Friday, the Brazilian has been linked with Manchester City, Chelsea and even Manchester United. That’s some top agenting.
The claim 24 hours ago was that Militão had been identified by City as one of their main targets, with Pep Guardiola eager to add another centre-half to his squad. It is now reported that Chelsea have joined that ‘transfer scrap’, while the Daily Mirror have even thrown United’s name into the mix.
Chelsea are ‘set to perform surgery on their squad’ after Antonio Conte’s expected summer exit, and Militão’s ‘versatility’ makes him an ideal candidate. He can play in defence as well as midfield, and is Brazilian. He is David Luiz, basically.
The 20-year-old São Paulo right-back is also wanted by Porto and Borussia Dortmund, and would cost around £20m. That valuation has probably shot up over this past week.
BYE BYE BAKA
Elsewhere at Stamford Bridge, Tiemoue Bakayoko is a wanted man. The exquisite performances in his debut season have clearly attracted attention. The Sun report that Monaco want the Frenchman to come home.
‘MONACO are keen to re-sign Chelsea flop Tiemoue Bakayoko, according to reports,’ writes Andrew Richardson, who kindly links to said ‘reports’: a piece from The National. In there, the peerless Richard Jolly explains how Bakayoko is not the only one who has struggled this season. Monaco ‘have endured a disappointing season’ without the midfielder.
There are plenty of ifs and buts – Monaco ‘ought to have funds to spend’, ‘Bakayoko may be targeted as a replacement for his former midfield partner Fabinho’ – while the future of manager Leonardo Jardim seems to be crucial. If he stays, Bakayoko could well join.
It remains to be seen whether Chelsea will want to cash in on Bakayoko now, the midfielder ‘intended to be a cornerstone of their team for years’. He has not started in the Premier League since being sent off after half an hour in February’s defeat to Watford.
That same article in The National includes another Monaco-related transfer rumour at the bottom: ‘Liverpool left-back Alberto Moreno is a target as they look to belatedly replace Manchester City’s Benjamin Mendy.’
With Andrew Robertson being perhaps Liverpool’s best player behind Mohamed Salah over the past few months, Moreno has been left in the shadows. The Spaniard started the season as first-choice but his only two starts this calendar year came in the FA Cup defeat to West Brom and the 0-0 draw with Porto in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie.
Again, it’s ifs and buts as Moreno ‘could be available’, while Liverpool may not be willing to part with the left-back. They turned down £11million for him in the summer, remember.
AND THE REST
Tottenham are lining up West Ham’s 24-year-old French left-back Arthur Masuaku as they prepare for the departure of their 27-year-old England international Danny Rose… West Brom’s 30-year-old Northern Ireland defender Jonny Evans is hoping to join Manchester City this summer… Meanwhile, City boss Pep Guardiola wants to sign a holding midfielder and a winger… Chelsea are considering Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri as a replacement for Antonio Conte this summer.