Transfer news LIVE: Sancho to Man United latest, Arsenal to sign Willian AND Coutinho, Benrahma to Tottenham


Welcome to the Evening Standard‘s rolling transfer news and rumours live blog as the summer transfer speculation increases.

The window officially opened last week after the completion of the delayed 2019-2020 Premier League season. Premier League clubs will now be busy tweaking their squads ahead of the new campaign, with the window scheduled to close on October 5.

Chelsea have already brought in the likes of Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner, stealing a march on their rivals, while the likes of Manchester United and Man City are making early progress on significant deals.

Arsenal and Tottenham can now offer European football to their targets, and that could prove invaluable during what promises to be a difficult summer of negotiations.Arsenal are the front-runners to sign Willian on a free transfer.

Live Updates


The best free agents available this summer

Following the huge financial losses due to the coronavirus pandemic, many teams will be looking at swap deals as a way to bring in new players.

Others will have to sell before they can buy, including Real Madrid and Barcelona, usually two of the biggest summer spenders.

Photo: Getty Images

Signing out-of-contract players is another alternative and here, Standard Sport takes a look at some of the most intriguing options on offer for free this summer.

Click here for Ben Hayward’s window recommendations!


Solskjaer confirms Alexis Sanchez will join Inter Milan

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has confirmed that Alexis Sanchez will be joining Inter Milan on a permanent deal today.

Photo: Reuters
The 31-year-old is set to sign a three-year deal with the Nerazzurri to end a nightmare spell at Old Trafford where he scored just three times in the Premier League.

“He’s a good player and had a good season down there at Inter. We wish him well,” the Man United boss said after their 2-1 win over LASK Linz.


Spurs eye Brentford star Benrahma

Tottenham are interested in signing Brentford star Said Benrahma according to reports.

Photo: Getty Images

The Bees are braced to receive offers for their top players after missing out on promotion to the Premier League.

Benrahma is understood to be ready to leave Brentford to secure Premier League football, and the Mirror reports that Tottenham have entered the race for the 24-year-old Algerian.


Arsenal to sign Willian AND Coutinho?

As reported by Standard Sport, Arsenal are the front runners to sign Willian from Chelsea on a free transfer, with Sky Sports reporting that the Gunners have offered the forward a three-year contract.

Photo: Getty Images
Meanwhile, Sport report that talks between Arsenal and Barcelona regarding a loan deal for Philippe Coutinho are at an ‘advanced stage’.

But could Arsenal really sign both of them? Only time will tell.

Man United will ‘exhaust all avenues’ to seal Sancho deal

Manchester United will exhaust all avenues of negotiation with Borussia Dortmund to land Jadon Sancho, with the club convinced their top target has his heart set on a move to Old Trafford.

Despite refusing to pay £108million for the England international, United are pressing ahead with talks in a bid to reach a compromise.

Photo: AFP

Confirmation on Tuesday night that the clubs were miles apart in their valuations of Sancho was met with fury from supporters. But it has been United’s stance all summer that their spending would be impacted by the effects of coronavirus.

Executive vice chairman Ed Woodward has repeatedly warned that it would not be “business as usual” during this window.

Yet United remain encouraged to pursue a deal for the 20-year-old, who is Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s absolute priority after securing a return to the Champions League.

While they would be prepared to consider other options if a deal cannot be reached, it’s understood Sancho is an overwhelming target that they are reluctant to alter their plans.

It is also believed the forward now sees his future at United – providing further incentive to United to pursue the deal.

The money remains the biggest stumbling block.

United believe payments in instalments is the best way to find a breakthrough – but are still unwilling to meet Dortmund’s full asking price.

They are reluctant to spend in excess of £60-70million on any individual target. If the deal is to get close to £108million, it will have to include performance-related add-ons.

Click here for the full story.


Bees star Watkins a target for Palace

Crystal Palace and Aston Villa will go head-to-head in their battle to sign Ollie Watkins from Brentford, according to The Guardian.

The Bees forward struck 26 goals in 50 Championship appearances before their play-off defeat at the hands of Fulham.

Brentford could lose their star striker if a club makes a suitable offer and the Premier League clubs are preparing to submit bids to prize him away from the west London outfit.

Conte hails Sanchez capture

Inter Milan head coach Antonio Conte has hailed the club’s capture of Alexis Sanchez on a permanent deal from Manchester United.

Photo: Reuters

The Chilean striker will complete a permanent switch to the San Siro tomorrow and Conte – after seeing his side book their place in the Europa League quarter-finals by beating Getafe – praised the efforts to clinch the signing.

“I think the Alexis Sanchez move is a great one made by the club. Considering the conditions we managed to get Alexis, it was a really good transfer,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

“He had come off two years when he was really struggling at Manchester United, then he got this injury with us and we took the time to get him back on track. So it’s only right that we are now able to reap the rewards of that effort.”


Sancho to Man Utd?

It’s safe to say Solskjaer is keeping his cards to his chest, refusing to talk about Jadon Sancho’s proposed move to Manchester United.

“We are looking into all transfers,” he told reporters.

“[I’m] not going to speak about individuals who are not our players.”


Williams staying at Charlton

There hasn’t been too much good news surrounding relegated Charlton of late.

However, Addicks fans will be pleased to see that Jonny Williams has taken up an option to extend his stay at The Valley until at least next summer.

“I’m delighted to be staying,” said Williams.

“I’ve loved my time at Charlton, I feel at home here and I’m looking forward to, hopefully, having a good season next year and doing what we can to get the team back to the Championship.”


Emery wants Guendouzi reunion at Villarreal

With a deal for Real Madrid starlet Takefusa Kubo reportedly agreed, will Unai Emery now secure a reunion with one of his former Arsenal players at Villarreal?

Matteo Guendouzi has fallen out of favour under Mikel Arteta and is being heavily linked with a departure from north London this summer.

According to French outlet Foot Mercato, Emery is interested in reuniting with the player he initially brought to Arsenal from Lorient in 2018, with contact made over a potential loan deal with an option to buy.

However, Barcelona are also said to be keen on Guendouzi, offering up Ivan Rakitic and Arturo Vidal in part-exchange deals.


Angel Gomes loaned to Boavista

Angel Gomes is officially on the move once again.

The teenage midfielder rejected the chance to extend his stay at Manchester United this summer and signed for Ligue 1 club Lille earlier this week.

But Gomes isn’t in Christophe Galtier’s immediate first-team plans at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy and will instead spend the 2020/21 season on loan with Portuguese top-flight outfit Boavista.


Arsenal won’t sign Willian AND Coutinho

Reports from Spain that Arsenal are nearing a deal for Philippe Coutinho have been dismissed.

It was suggested in a section of the Catalan media that the Gunners had entered into advanced negotiations with Barcelona over the former Liverpool playmaker.

However, the Mirror’s John Cross says that Arsenal were offered Coutinho, but are not chasing his signing as a result of fellow Brazilian Willian’s “highly likely” impending arrival at Emirates Stadium.

“They won’t do both,” he tweeted on Wednesday evening.


Sancho accepts Man United must meet £108m price tag

Jadon Sancho appears to have accepted that his valuation will have to be met in order for him to leave Borussia Dortmund this summer.

Standard Sport understands that Manchester United and Dortmund are far apart in negotiations over a fee for the England forward, with United trying to strike a compromise as the Bundesliga giants hold out for £108m.

And Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc is not expecting Sancho – who returned to training earlier this week – to push back over his current club’s stance and also expects him to remain at Signal Iduna Park for the 2020/21 Bundesliga campaign, which begins next month.

Sport Witness reports Zorc as telling German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung: “I don’t expect any difficulties. Jadon has accepted that, he’s a very pleasant, fair guy.”

He added: “I assume that Jadon will go to the training camp on Monday and play with us for the coming season.”


And here is what Standard Sport’s Manchester correspondent James Robson thinks of the deal…

“City have responded positively to relinquishing their title with two promising signings at good prices.

“Don’t expect Ake to be the last of their business this summer.”


Ake has ‘attributes needed to excel’ under Pep

Back to Manchester City’s confirmed signing of Nathan Ake.

Director of football Txiki Begiristain believes the Dutchman has the individual qualities necessary to thrive in Pep Guardiola’s system.

“Nathan is a quality defender. He was a leader during his time at Bournemouth, and I am so pleased we’ve managed to bring him here,” he said.

“He’s strong and quick, and we feel he has the technical and intellectual attributes needed to excel in Pep’s setup. 

“Working with this squad, which is full of world-class players, will raise his level, and we are looking forward to seeing what he can achieve here in the coming years.”


Sanchez’s Man United exit to be announced tomorrow

Alexis Sanchez’s permanent transfer to Inter Milan on a three-year contract will be confirmed on Thursday morning.

That is according to Nerazzuri CEO Beppe Marotta, who spoke to Sky Sport ahead of Wednesday night’s Europa League tie against Getafe in Germany.

“Unofficially, we’ll make it official tomorrow morning,” he said. “The player is entirely owned by Inter.

“We have a contract with him for three seasons.”


Ake: Man City move is a dream

Here is what Nathan Ake had to say after completing his move from Bournemouth to Manchester City..

“City have been the best side in England over the course of the last decade,” he said.

“Coming here is a dream for me. This is a top side full of world-class players. Everywhere you look in this squad there are big names with international pedigree.

“Pep is a manager admired across the world – what he’s done in the game speaks for itself. The success he’s had is unbelievable and the style of football he plays really appeals to me.

“I know I’m going to have to work hard to get into the side, but that’s what I’m here to do. I’ll do whatever I can to make an impact and help the team win silverware.”


Man City announce Ake deal

Photo: Twitter/@ManCity

Manchester City have confirmed the £41m signing of Nathan Ake from Bournemouth.

The versatile Dutch international centre-back has signed a five-year deal at Etihad Stadium and becomes City’s second arrival in as many days following the capture of Spanish winger Ferran Torres from Valencia.
Chelsea elected not to exercise the £40m buy-back clause they inserted into the deal when Ake left Stamford Bridge for the south coast back in 2017.

It’s a club-record sale for relegated Bournemouth, who initially signed the defender for £20m.


Real Madrid agree Kubo loan

Photo: Getty Images

Real Madrid winger Takefusa Kubo is heading to Unai Emery’s Villarreal on loan, according to reports.

Spanish newspaper Diario AS claim that a one-year arrangement has now been agreed, with no option to buy included in the deal.

The loan is expected to be officially announced in the coming days.

Kubo, 19, joined Real from FC Tokyo last summer and spent the 2019/20 campaign on loan at Real Mallorca, who were relegated from LaLiga.

Granada, Celta Vigo and Osasuna had all reportedly been interested in signing the Japan international, while some reports have claimed that Bayern Munich saw an approach for his services rebuffed.

Ronaldo to PSG?

Another interesting theory from Berbatov suggests Cristiano Ronaldo’s next (final?) move could see him end up at Paris Saint-Germain. 

Photo: Reuters

The 35-year-old has just won his second consecutive Serie A title with a phenomenal return of 31 goals for the Bianconeri.

But Berbatov believes PSG could be a potential destination for the Portugal star if he wishes to continue playing until he is 40, as he has previously stated.

“I have heard rumours that Ronaldo may go to PSG,” he told Betfair. “It would be no surprise to see him like Ibrahimovic and play at 39, and even at 35 he is still so sought after as a player.

“Money is no object for PSG, and if both parties want it, it can happen. Imagine Ronaldo with Mbappe and Neymar, wow! He would enjoy playing in France, it’s not as strong as Spain, Italy, or England. It’s similar to Germany, PSG are like Bayern and everyone else is way behind.”

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When does the 2020 summer transfer window close?

The window is now open for 10 weeks from July 27.

Following consultation with the EFL, a domestic-only window will be added from 5 October, closing 5pm on 16 October. During this window, Premier League clubs will only be able to trade with EFL clubs (either loans or permanent registrations). No transfers can take place between Premier League clubs in this period.

Chelsea will push ahead with moves for Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz and remain interested in Leicester City’s Ben Chilwell, while Manchester United are also expected to be busy this summer.

Jadon Sancho remains Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s number one target, and a deal should be completed if Man United can negotiate a compromise on the £100m-plus valuation Dortmund has for the England international.

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