Gossip: Arsenal battle Liverpool for next Wijnaldum

Matt Stead
Liverpool's Sadio Mane (left) and Brighton and Hove Albion's Yves Bissouma battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the AMEX Stadium, Brighton. PA Photo. Issue date: Wednesday July 8, 2020. See PA story SOCCER Brighton. Photo credit should read: Paul Childs/NMC Pool/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: EDITORIAL USE ONLY No use with unauthorised audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or "live" services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications.

Arsenal v Liverpool has been a little one-sided recently but might that all change with Yves Bissouma?


Frank Lampard sees Billy Gilmour as being able to “compete” for a starting spot in the Chelsea midfield, but the reality is that the teenager will do well to improve on his six starts last season. A knee injury has sidelined Gilmour since July but five Champions League minutes against Sevilla offer hope.

So too does interest from Napoli, who admire his ‘technique’, ‘quality’, ‘agility’, ‘stamina’, ‘vision’, ‘personality’ and ‘discrete phase of interdiction’. Oh my.

To that end, they feel he ‘can immediately add’ to Gennaro Gattuso’s midfield. Caliciomercato say Napoli are thus ‘exploring the possibility of ‘testing’ Gilmour,’ which would mean a loan with a view to a permanent deal.

Chelsea rate their dead cert incredibly highly, of course, so will not want to miss out on the ‘opportunity’ to develop him. But ‘intermediaries’ are in discussion with the hope that they can ‘soften the position’ of the Premier League side.


There could be something of an exodus at Stamford Bridge in January, and a particular quest ‘to reduce the number of centre-backs at the club’.

Antonio Rudiger seems likely to leave despite starting against Sevilla in midweek. Chelsea haven’t conceded in his 292 minutes on the pitch this season but he is no Thiago Silva or Kurt Zouma. Barcelona have been linked.

ESPN add that Fikayo Tomori will be made available for loan to satisfy ‘the need for regular minutes to aid his development’. West Ham are mentioned as the club that ‘may revive their interest’ after he turned them down in the summer.

One thing remains unclear: whether both would be allowed to leave simultaneously. Chelsea also have Andreas Christensen in reserve, while Cesar Azpilicueta has played centrally plenty of times before. But an injury to Silva or Zouma could change their thinking on letting two potential replacements go at the same time.


Friday’s big transfer news comes from talkSPORT, however, with ‘transfer insider’ Alex Crook – hopefully nominative determinism is not at play here – suggesting Arsenal and Liverpool both want Yves Bissouma.

He says that Mikel Arteta is “a big fan” of the Brighton midfielder. He adds that Jurgen Klopp “is also monitoring his situation”. He also says Arsenal have Christian Eriksen on a list of “potential targets”.

Bissouma is mentioned with regards to Liverpool as a Georginio Wijnaldum replacement but there is no suggestion as to what fee Brighton would demand. They signed him for £15m in 2018 on a five-year deal and he is now an established starter, so the ballpark is massive.