LIVE Transfer Talk: Liverpool make €70m move for Napoli striker Insigne
The transfer window for Europe's biggest clubs is closed, but click here for all the deals and keep track of who has joined the big boys. And Transfer Talk will continue to scour the world's media and set correspondents loose to see what's on the agenda for the summer.
TOP STORY: Liverpool make €70m Insigne move
Liverpool were quiet in the January transfer window, mainly because they had splashed a whole heap of cash over the summer to get themselves into the Premier League title conversation. But Italian newspaper La Repubblica claims they already have their sights set on a striker target once the window opens again.
Indeed, the paper says they have already made an offer of around €70m for Napoli's Lorenzo Insigne -- the only problem being that they haven't actually made it to the club, rather to the player's agent Mino Raiola.
Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis reportedly wants €150m for the 27-year-old striker, so there doesn't seem much hope of doing a deal. But if the Reds can finally win the title this season, perhaps they'll tempt a player whose only taste of domestic title success so far has come in Serie B.
23.30 GMT: That will do it for another busy day with our Transfer Talk LIVE blog. Remember to check back tomorrow for more rumours from Europe and the latest deals in MLS. Have a great night all!
23.20 GMT: With Frenkie de Jong already inked for next season, Barcelona could turn their focus to his Ajax teammate Matthijs de Ligt in the summer.
According to Mundo Deportivo, the young Dutch defender wants to follow De Jong to Barca, after insisting on finishing this season with Ajax.
One of the top young centre-backs in the world and the 2018 Golden Boy award winner, De Ligt, 19, would cost the Catlans over £65 million.
Will it be more 'Dutch delight' for Barca come summer? We'll have to wait and find out.
22.40 GMT: Chelsea have already signed up one winger for next season in Christian Pulisic but could they be in for another?
Estadio Deportivo via calciomercato.com claims that Chelsea are eyeing Sevilla star Pablo Sarabia. Sarabia has had a breakout season for Sevilla with 17 goals and nine assists over all competitions thus far and could be viewed as a replacement for left winger Pedro, who only has one year remaining on his contract and turns 32 this summer.
22.06 GMT: DONE DEAL -- Atlanta United have signed Pogba!
No not World Cup winner Paul Pogba, his older brother Florentin Pogba. The 28-year-old defender joins the MLS champions from Turkish side Genclerbirligi, after rumours had swirled in recent weeks that he was nearing a deal with the Five Stripes.
Pogba is a physical central defender and previously enjoyed a six-year spell with Ligue 1 side Saint-Etienne and also plays internationally for Guinea.
With a Pogba in Atlanta, we are sure to see Paul behind the goal at Mercedes-Benz Stadium at some point this season.
21.36 GMT: Could on loan winger Oliver Burke be in line to sign for Celtic on a permanent basis?
The 21-year-old Scot, on loan from West Brom, has scored twice in five games for the Hoops and seems to be enjoying life at Parkhead.
Normally deployed as a winger or even a full-back, Burke has been giving some time as a central forward since joining Celtic last month and has taken to it.
For a story appearing in the Scotsman, Burke was asked about his long-term future: i"Right now I'm just focusing on day-to-day; I don't want to look ahead too far because sometimes decisions can be taken out of your hands," he said. "But if I'm enjoying my football, then I want to stay. It's obviously an amazing club to be at, the fans are great, we have a great manager so what's not to love? I'm really happy so we'll just have to see what happens."
At 21, and as a Scotland international, Burke profiles as a player Celtic would love to take on permanently. We'll check back on this one come the summer...
21.00 GMT: According to a report in the Daily Mirror, Tottenham are interested in Norwich right-back Max Aarons.
The 19-year-old has played in 25 games for the promotion hopefuls, scoring two goals and producing four assists. Norwich reportedly want £15 million for the youngster but since Tottenham haven't bought a player in either of the last two windows, who knows whether they would pay up for Aarons...
20.18 GMT: After signing Jorginho in the summer from Lazio and adding Gonzalo Higuain on loan from Juventus in January, Maurizio Sarri and Chelsea could be set to return to Serie A for more reinforcements in the summer.
Gazzetta dello Sport via Sport Witness claims that Chelsea have joined the ever-growing queue for Roma starlet Nicolo Zaniolo. The 19-year-old has broken through this season for the Giallorossi and has been red-hot, scoring three goals and adding two assists in his last five outings.
Roma reportedly value the youngster at £40 million but Real Madrid, Juventus and others are also reportedly circling. It would be surprising to see Roma cash in on Zaniolo so quickly but for a "seller club" like Roma, maybe the price will be right come the summer.
19.24 GMT: Despite recently splashing $8.5 million on Romania international Alexandru Mitrita, New York City FC might not be done yet.
If Spanish media outlet COPE is to be believed, NYCFC are chasing another European-based attacker in Spanish striker Carlitos of Legia Warsaw.
The 28-year-old, born Carlos Daniel López Huesca, led the Polish top flight in goals last season with 24 for Wisla Krakow and was even named the Player of the Season in the Ekstraklasa. Carlitos moved to Legia Warsaw this season and has eight goals in 20 games for the second-place side.
With the departures of David Villa and Joe Inge Berget, NYCFC have no central striker on the roster at the moment.
18.41 GMT: Here's a blast from the past...
Ravel Morrison, remember him? Well reports out of Sweden indicate the former Man United wonderkid is close to joining Swedish side Ostersunds.
According to Ostersunds technical director David Webb, Morrison is close to signing and has joined up with the club at training camp in Marbella.
Morrison, who just turned 26, is currently on the books at Lazio but has played just eight games total since joining the Italian side in 2015, and none over the past two seasons.
Most recently on loan in Mexico with Atlas, the once highly-touted Morrison has become a sad and cautionary tale about overhyping youngsters too soon. We for one wish Ravel all the best in reigniting a career that was once tipped by many for stardom.
17.58 GMT: Shifting over to MLS for a moment where the Philadelphia Union may be closing in on a blockbuster signing.
ESPN's very own Taylor Twellman says he is hearing the Union are nearing a deal for Mexico international and Eintracht Frankfurt midfielder Marco Fabian.
Fabian, who has enjoyed some very good spells in Germany, has been out of the mix this year for Die Adler and is in search of regular playing time and a fresh start.
The 29-year-old has scored nine goals in 42 caps for Mexico and is looking to reignite his club career, as fellow Mexico international Carlos Vela did last season with LAFC.
17.19 GMT: Since his breakout season at Monaco and subsequent £40 million move to Chelsea, Tiemoue Bakayoko has landed on tough times.
Recently though, the talented central midfielder has started to find his feet again and is currently enjoying a nice stretch of play at loan club AC Milan.
Despite three years remaining on his contract with the Blues, the Frenchman now wants to make his stay in Milan permanent.
"I was greeted by [Paolo] Maldini and Leonardo on my first day and and you immediately realise who you're dealing with," said Bakayoko to French paper Nice Matin, via Sky Sports.
"Then you have the atmosphere at San Siro, which is extraordinary. Milan are a legendary club. Who wouldn't like to stay at a club like Milan for a long time?"
The ball is firmly in Chelsea's court but one would imagine the London club would be open to selling the 24-year-old permanently, especially after a disastrous spell at Stamford Bridge in 2017.
16.29 GMT: DONE DEAL: Well here's a sentence I never thought I'd type: "Derry City sign former Liverpool and Real Madrid man."
But that is in fact the case as the League of Ireland club has signed Gerardo Bruma, who came up through the Real Madrid Academy and later played three years for Liverpool's reserves. Bruma never made a first-team breakthrough for either club but helped the Reds win the Premier Reserve League in 2007-08.
Now 28, Bruma has quite the CV, featuring stops with Blackpool, Huesca, Tranmere Rovers, Whitehawk, Accrington Stanley and the Ottawa Fury of the USL, the second division in the United States.
I am making an assumption here but I can't imagine too many Argentines have ever put on the home jersey at Brandywell!
15.57 GMT: Toronto FC have made a signing. It's U.S. international striker Terrence Boyd from SV Darmstadt 98.
"We are excited to welcome Terrence and his family to the club. Terrence is a player that we've tracked for years during his time with the U.S. National Team and in Germany," said Toronto FC General Manager Ali Curtis. "He is an experienced, attacking player that is capable of scoring goals in MLS. We're looking forward to him joining our preseason and integrating himself into the group."
15.13 GMT: The Daily Telegraph report that Shkodran Mustafi is going to be put up for sale by Arsenal this summer, in the hope they get back some of the £35m they spent on him in 2016.
14.39 GMT: RB Leipzig have made striker Timo Werner a contract offer to stay at the club, but Bild report that the 22-year-old is waiting for Bayern Munich to make a move.
Liverpool have also been linked but the Bundesliga club's boss Ralf Rangnick just wants to be told one way or the other. "We want a timely decision," he said. "At the latest, when the season is over, we want to know what will happen.
14.04 GMT: Chelsea are frustrated by Thibaut Courtois' claim that director Marina Granovskaia went back on a promise to sanction his sale to Real Madrid last summer, sources have told ESPN FC.
Courtois refused to turn up for preseason training last August in an attempt to force through his desired move to Madrid, and Chelsea eventually made a £35m deal to sell him after securing a replacement, activating the €80m (£71.5m) buyout clause in Kepa Arrizabalaga's contract with Athletic Bilbao.
In an interview with Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad published last weekend, Courtois claimed he informed Granovskaia of his desire to leave Chelsea in March of last season and was assured by her that he would be allowed to go once the season was over.
But sources at Chelsea insist no such guarantee was given, adding that the Belgian's agent informed them in June that no club had indicated a willingness to make a formal offer to sign Courtois during that summer window.
13.40 GMT: You want the latest on Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham, Chelsea, Barcelona and Bayern target Adrien Rabiot don't you?
PSG boss Thomas Tuchel told a news conference: "There is nothing to add, because there is nothing new. The situation remains the same."
13.21 GMT: Juventus want James Rodriguez, but evidently Cristiano Ronaldo has got involved. Marca reports that CR7 personally phoned James to convince him over a summer move. We'll have to see if it worked or not soon...
12.39 GMT: Porto's Yacine Brahimi is available on a free transfer this summer so of course he's linked to Arsenal, given the Gunners have just a £40m budget to turn themselves into title challengers (good luck with that when all it will buy you is Virgil van Dijk's legs.)
Further down you'll read that Milan and Watford are also keen, but reports in Portugal are also suggesting that Arsenal are in for the winger.
12.20 GMT: It's a short quote, but a potentially big one.
Chelsea winger Eden Hazard, in an RMC TV documentary to be shown tomorrow night, says: "I know what I am going to do. I have made a decision."
Now we're pretty sure that's in reference to whether he will sign a new contract at Chelsea or depart for Real Madrid ... but it could equally be about what he's having for dinner.
And some context here from our Chelsea correspondent...
My understanding is the RMC interview with Hazard was done at least two months ago. He's sounded less certain of his future in more recent comments.— Liam Twomey (@liam_twomey) February 5, 2019
None of this means he hasn't decided, of course. It's not just defenders that Hazard likes to keep guessing... #cfc
11.43 GMT: Signing Cristiano Ronaldo wasn't enough: Juventus want to build their own version of the Galacticos, according to Tuttosport, and are looking at signing Real Madrid duo Isco and Marcelo, as well as James Rodriguez, on loan at Bayern Munich from Real.
That would be QUITE the statement.
11.08 GMT: Belgian side Genk held firm and stopped Southampton from signing 21-year-old right-back Joakim Maehle. But the player admitted he was keen.
"I'm not going to say that I wasn't interested," he told the Echo. "This was a nice proposal from a big club from a top competition. But at the same time, I have full understanding of Genk's point of view."
10.24 GMT: Ashley Cole has spoken about his acrimonious departure from Arsenal to Chelsea back in 2006. The 38-year-old is now at Derby County after time in MLS with the LA Galaxy but says the way he left the Gunners still hurts.
"I was a little bit hot-headed and didn't realise what I was doing at the time as well but I don't regret it. When I look back now, it was something maybe that was meant to happen," he said, speaking as a guest on Sky Sports' Monday Night Football.
"Of course it hurt me because I knew it wasn't just my fault. I didn't leave for no reason. I didn't go to Arsene Wenger and say 'I want to leave'. There was more to it.
"It happens in football now, I've seen it happen to a lot of other players. It's life, I moved on, they moved on. I do feel sometimes a little bit sad because it was my club, I played there since I was nine. To have that ill-feeling from the fans, still, is hard sometimes."
Negotiations with the striker are still at an early stage but United are keen to move quickly to tie down one of the most highly-rated young players in the world and have decided to reward the 21-year-old, who has been linked with a move to Real Madrid, with a new five year deal.
United have already tied down Luke Shaw and Anthony Martial, while negotiations with David De Gea are ongoing. United are also in talks with Ander Herrera and Juan Mata, who could leave for free in the summer. Ashley Young will also be out of contract on June 30 but sources have told ESPN FC he is close to signing a new one-year deal.
09.25 GMT: AS claims that Real Madrid have ruled out the signing of Christian Eriksen from Tottenham, with the club ready to give Luka Modric a new deal instead and trust in Dani Ceballosas the long-term replacement for the Ballon d'Or winning midfielder.
09.04 GMT: Barcelona vice-president Jordi Mestre has spoken to SPORT about Neymar. And it doesn't seem good news for Barca fans.
"In football terms, Neymar is a crack -- one of the best in the world," he said. "Personally, I believe, as a matter of principle, that Barca should not let him return. In any case, I think that it is very, very unlikely that Neymar wears our colours again. First of all, for economic reasons, and secondly, he is a PSG player -- their president [Nasser Al-Khelaifi] will do the impossible to keep hold of him.
"Neymar irritated us [when he left in 2017]. They [Neymar and his representatives] promised us one thing, but the reality was different. Fortunately, we realised in time -- before paying a premium for a contract extension. Neymar's father was playing two different games."
The Spanish sports daily reports that the 19-year-old, who has scored six goals in 12 Primeira Liga games this season, has also been scouted by Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Manchester United and Borussia Dortmund.
The attacking midfielder is reported to have a €120m release clause in his contract. But, as we saw with Ronaldo's move to Juventus last summer, release clauses are only prohibitive measures if the player's club doesn't want to sell.
PAPER TALK (by Nick Judd)
North London rivals in race to sign Rabiot?
Arsenal boss Unai Emery believes he can strengthen his squad this summer with the addition of familiar face Adrien Rabiot.
The coveted midfielder is set to be available this summer after he refused to sign a new deal at PSG, and the Mirror reports that Emery is confident his relationship with the 23-year-old -- the duo worked together for two years at in the French capital -- should be enough to see him win the race for the skilful all-rounder.
That race could involve north London rivals Tottenham, with the Mirror also suggesting Spurs are ready to spend some money. Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino could see the signing of Rabiot as the player he needs to make a major statement as Spurs prepare to start their first full season in the new stadium.
Both Arsenal and Spurs face pressure from Barcelona, Liverpool and Bayern Munich, though Barca's interest has cooled following their signing of midfielder Frenkie de Jong from Ajax in January. De Jong joins the Catalan club in the summer.
Spurs making a case for the defence?
News that Tottenham could finally be opening the purse strings this summer will delight fans frustrated by their recent lack of transfer activity, and next on the club's list could be Fiorentina centre-back Nikola Milenkovic.
Former FK Partizan man Milenkovic has been in fine form under Viola boss Stefano Pioli and has attracted admiring glances from Serie A leaders Juventus, though some at the Turin giants are said to be reluctant as a result of the 21-year-old's lack of experience at the highest level.
Pochettino's record of developing young players could make White Hart Lane the perfect destination for the burgeoning defender.
Milan duo in for winger Brahimi?
AC Milan boss Gennaro Gattuso could finally land the winger he craves, if rumours linking the Rossoneri with FC Porto winger Yacine Brahimi are to be believed.
Portuguese outlet A Bola is reporting that Milan and rivals Inter have moved ahead of Watford in the race to land the 28-year-old from the Portuguese league leaders. Brahimi has played an active part in Porto's rise to the summit, with a combined total of 15 goals and assists from the flank.
Gattuso was linked with a long line of wingers in January and was left disappointed at the club's failure to add to their wide options. Yannick Carrasco, Manchester United target Steven Bergwijn and Gerard Dulofeu were all linked with a move to the Italian giants, but to no avail.
-- While Unai Emery is looking for reinforcements for next season, he might have to do his shopping on the cheap if news of his transfer budget is to be believed. The Daily Mail reports that the Spaniard will have just £45m to play with.
-- West Ham United could take on Real Madrid to sign a player described as "better" than Kylian Mbappe, reports AS. Madrid have been keeping tabs on Benfica star Joao Felix, but the Hammers were reported to have enquired about how much it would take to lure him from Portugal.
-- Fulham fans will have more than one reason for wanting to avoid relegation at the end of the season, for Kicker are reporting that striker Andre Schurrle has admitted he'll leave should Claudio Ranieiri's side go down.