TOP STORY: Man United turn attention to Aarons
Aarons, 20, is seen as potential competition for right-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka and could arrive for a fee in the neighborhood of £20 million. United had been interested in former Tottenham star Kieran Trippier, but the Atletico-Madrid defender was recently hit with a 10-week ban from football after breaching the FA’s betting rules.
Sources told ESPN that Barcelona had two bids rejected for Aarons earlier this year before signing Sergino Dest from Ajax, while Bayern Munich were also interested. Barca first made contact with Aarons’ agents over a transfer in May and agreed on personal terms but a move for the England under-21 international did not come off.
09.25 GMT: Juventus midfielder Sami Khedira is set to leave the club in January and could land in the Premier League, having been linked with Everton.
“The Premier League is still missing in my collection, to play there would be the icing on the cake,” he told The Athletic.
“There are fewer breaks in the game and many counter-attacks, but this is what I like. I’ve done a lot of extra sessions with fitness coaches to get myself ready for a higher pace and intensity. I’ve done extra sessions with fitness coaches to get myself ready for the pace and intensity in the Premier League.”
09.00 GMT: Xavi Hernandez will return to Barcelona as general manager next month if Victor Font is elected as the club’s president on Jan. 24.
Xavi, 40, left Barca in 2015 and is the coach of Al-Sadd in Qatar but has always been open about his desire to return to Camp Nou one day.
Font explained on Wednesday that his plans for Barca’s future, which include bringing in Jordi Cruyff as sporting director, have been drawn up with the help of Xavi.
“As [general manager], Xavi will ultimately take responsibility for all the decisions taken related to football at the club,” Font said at a news conference.
“He has everything needed: he can manage, he can lead, he has the trust of the players, he knows the club and he loves the club.”
Kasey Keller praises USMNT Player of the Year Weston McKennie for how quickly he has adapted at Juventus.
PAPER TALK (by Harry Kettle)
Juventus to go after Llorente
The Old Lady, who sit sixth in the table, are hoping to give their attacking options an injection of life as they try to retain their Serie A crown amid pressure from the Milan clubs and, while he may not always be the most consistent goal scorer, Llorente appears to be one of the main names on their wishlist.
He is with Napoli but, after leaving Juventus in 2015, a return could be on the cards sooner rather than later.
Barcelona set to keep Puig
For a long time, the youngster has been linked with some kind of departure from Camp Nou, but in a bit of a U-turn, Barca will instead trigger a clause that will extend his contract until 2023.
The club doesn’t want to see him leave as a free agent in the summer and, based on this report, they don’t want him to leave at all right now.
Napoli pursue Emerson loan
The belief is that the Naples club want to try to get a deal over the finish line during the January transfer window and, given how fast the Blues have worked in the transfer market under Frank Lampard so far, that prospect doesn’t seem so far-fetched.
The two sides have done a lot of business with one another over the years, and it now appears as if Emerson’s time at Stamford Bridge could be coming to an end.
– Sky Germany is reporting that Schalke 04 are working on a deal to try to bring Sead Kolasinac back to the club. The full-back departed the Bundesliga for the Premier League back in 2017 and, after three inconsistent years at the Emirates with Arsenal, he’s desperate to go back to the place where he first made a name for himself.
– Papu Gomez is edging closer to leaving Atalanta, Fabrizio Romano reports. After his relationship with manager Gian Piero Gasperini became strained, the 32-year-old forward has been training individually away from the rest of the first-team squad. Gomez is now waiting for the right bid to come in during the January transfer window.