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Transfer Rater: Marquinhos to Man United


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50-50 Challenge
 By David Amoyal

Miralem Pjanic, Felipe Anderson, Diego Costa, Mohamed Elneny rumours rated

There's a lot of talk and speculation, but when it comes to transfers, how do you separate fact from fiction? David Amoyal looks at some of the current rumours and predicts how likely the proposed moves are to actually happening. 

Miralem Pjanic to Real Madrid: January (15 percent); summer (45 percent)

The Bosnian midfielder is now entering the prime of his career -- he'll turn 26 in April -- and Roma is a club that has not been afraid to move their top players if the price is right.

Real Madrid is in pole position to acquire Pjanic, but odds are they will have to wait until the summer, when his exit clause of €30 million can be exercised. Indeed, the player himself has been quoted as saying that he "can exclude a transfer this winter."

Madrid could still make a big move in January even if Pjanic doesn't arrive. They have been negotiating with Dynamo Kiev for Andriy Yarmolenko but, at present, their bid is significantly lower than the Ukranian club's demands.

Miralem Pjanic and the Roma midfield struggled in their Serie A opener at Hellas Verona.
Miralem Pjanic has been with Roma since joining from Lyon in 2011.

Felipe Anderson to Manchester United (35 percent)

United has liked what they have seen when they have scouted Anderson but Lazio has some uncertainty at his position.

Keita Balde is looking for more playing time and his agents have been negotiating with Monaco, while Antonio Candreva has been linked to Paris Saint-Germain, Barcelona, Inter and Milan. Considering he is 28, Lazio has a shorter window to cash in. Also, Ravel Morrison will likely return to the Premier League.

All that said, Lazio has not been afraid to move a top player in January -- see Hernanes for €20m to Inter in 2013, for example -- if the price is right. If they can keep Candreva and convince Keita to stay (which will be easier to do if Morrision and/or Anderson leave), they would be open to accepting a big bid from Manchester United.

Diego Costa to Atletico Madrid and Jackson Martinez to Chelsea (25 percent)

The two clubs have done a lot of business together in recent years and could give a fresh start to two struggling strikers. Costa almost certainly has more value to Atletico than any other club when his track record with Diego Simeone is considered.

Diego Costa
Diego Costa scored 27 league goals in 2013-14, his last with Atletico Madrid before joining Chelsea.

Meanwhile, there are several Atletico players who Chelsea has pursued in the past -- Diego Godin, Koke and Antoine Griezmann, for example -- but the easiest deal would involve Martinez who has failed to perform in Spain since his €35m move from Porto in the summer.

A goalkeeper to Liverpool: Diego Lopez (35 percent); Federico Marchetti (20 percent)

Liverpool has been monitoring numerous Serie A goalkeepers in recent years, including Mattia Perin and Marco Sportiello, and their two most recent targets are Diego Lopez and Federico Marchetti.

Lopez has lost his starting job at Milan to 16-year-old Gianluigi Donnarumma. Considering that the rossoneri and Liverpool still have to resolve the long-term situation of on-loan Mario Balotelli, whose agent Mino Raiola also represents Donnarumma, Diego Lopez could become an important piece in the deal.

While Lopez could start ahead of Simon Mignolet, signing Marchetti would be a way to increase competition at the goalkeeper position. As Gianluca Di Marzio reported, Marchetti is open to an experience in England, and his contract with Lazio is set to expire next June. The Italian club is already making plans to replace him and are close to signing Hajduk Split's Lovre Kalinic.

Midfielders to Arsenal: Mohamed Elneny to Arsenal (60 percent); Marcelo Brozovic (10 percent)

Of the two, Basel's Mohamed Elneny is a more realistic -- and cheaper -- option. The 23-year-old Egyptian international has not been shy in stating how much he would like to play in the Premier League and this move could happen sooner rather than later.

Meanwhile, the Gunners pursued Brozovic in January 2015 before Inter signed him and, unless Arsenal is ready to make a very substantial bid, he will finish the season with Roberto Mancini's side. Brozovic is on a two-year loan deal from Dinamo Zagreb, with an option to buy set at €8m.

Domenico Berardi to the Premier League: January (five percent); summer (25 percent)

Liverpool has been linked to Berardi in recent months but Tottenham is the club taking the most concrete steps to sign him in 2016.

Spurs could easily top the €25m option Juventus holds on the 21-year-old and could also offer him more playing time. However, Berardi will almost certainly finish the season in Italy to increase his chances of playing in Euro 2016.

David covers transfer news for ESPN FC and works for Gianluca Di Marzio's website.


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