Andre Gomes, Ilkay Gundogan, Carlos Bacca, Bruno Peres 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.
Andre Gomes to Manchester United: 15 percent in January; 40 percent next summer
Andre Gomes is one of the hottest names on the transfer market. The 22-year-old Valencia midfielder has drawn interest from Manchester United as well as Juventus and Napoli according to Gianluca Di Marzio. But unless the Italian clubs sell Paul Pogba or Gonzalo Higuain, respectively, they will likely be priced out in the race next summer.
On top of their considerable financial advantage, Manchester United has an important ally in the race. According to Di Marzio, super agent Jorge Mendes wants to bring his client Andre Gomes to Old Trafford along with coach Jose Mourinho next summer.
Another factor in the Andre Gomes race is the recent transfer ban handed to Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid. Manchester United is interested in Saul Niguez, and while Atletico didn't want to sell him to begin with, they will be more hard-pressed to find a replacement with a transfer ban.
Gianluigi Donnarumma to Man United in 2016: 15 percent
This week emerging young AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigo Donnarumma was linked with a move to Manchester United. Milan's executive director Adriano Galliani was asked about the reports before the Coppa Italia match against Carpi, responding that he hadn't received any offers and that the keeper wasn't for sale anyway.
But Donnarumma's potential transfer to Manchester United in 2016 -- which is a long shot to begin with -- is also impacted by Real Madrid's transfer ban. Should it not be overturned, Real's chances of landing David De Gea become impossible. Milan president Silvio Berlusconi has also said he plans on keeping Donnarumma for the next 20 years, but when your agent is Mino Raiola, who represents many Milan players in addition to Donnarumma, anything can happen.
A defender to Liverpool in 2016: Martin Caceres: 15 percent; Joel Matip: 65 percent
Martin Caceres is one of the most attractive options on the transfer market in Serie A. The versatile defender has over 60 caps for Uruguay's national and his contract with Juventus is set to expire in June. While Caceres has barely played at Juve recently, he continues to appear for his national team. He has suitors in Serie A, especially Roma, but Juventus would prefer to sell him abroad for a nominal fee for the remainder of the season rather than bolstering a competitor for stretch run of the season.
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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has always kept a close eye on Italian market, so it's no surprise that Liverpool has also been linked to Caceres after all their injuries to their back line. But after landing Steven Caulker, the odds of them completing a deal with Juventus in January have diminished. The most likely scenario has Juventus keeping Caceres for rest of season as insurance for their defense rather than helping a competitor like Roma or Inter.
Liverpool is however close to completing a Bosman free transfer deal for defender Joel Matip (another player Klopp knows well) for next season. The Schalke center back turned down the club's offer for an extension and would be quite a coup considering he is only 24.
Ilkay Gundogan to England: 10 percent in January; 45 percent next summer
Ilkay Gundogan has been linked to Premier League clubs for years, and recently he told BILD he's exploring all options as he's aware football careers aren't very long (he will turn 26 in October). The most likely outcome is that he's sold to an English club (Chelsea, the two Manchester clubs, a reunion with Klopp at Liverpool are all possibilities) next summer but Juventus are also a possibility.
As Di Marzio reported recently, Juventus contacted Dortmund about Gundogan and they made a substantial offer, but they were told by Dortmund he's not for sale in January. Juve could make a bigger bid in the summer, especially if Paul Pogba leaves, and would be able to offer him guaranteed playing time. Juventus is also the favorite to land Henrikh Mkhitaryan, a player they have pursued in the past, next summer mainly because of their strong relationship with the Armenian player's agent, Mino Raiola.
Carlos Bacca to Chelsea in January: 15 percent
This week there have been reports of Chelsea's interest in Carlos Bacca. Last summer Milan acquired him from Sevilla by triggering his €30 million exit clause right after Atletico Madrid defeated them in the race for Jackson Martinez.
Considering Bacca's performance -- he has accounted for eight of Milan's 25 Serie A goals this season -- it's not surprising that he's being linked to a club like Chelsea. Bacca will turn 30 next September, so Milan has a very short window to turn a profit or recoup their substantial investment; reports have Chelsea bidding €40 million. While the offer would be tempting on paper, Milan is also set to sell striker Luiz Adriano to Chinese club Jiangsu Suning FC for around €15 million.
There are other smaller factors in this deal. Bacca is a self-proclaimed diehard Milan fan who has stated multiple times his dream was to play for the club. Milan also used both of their non-EU slots for this season by acquiring Bacca and Luiz Adriano (even moving both wouldn't open a new one), so they would be slightly limited in who they target as a replacement. Milan has become very unpredictable but odds are they will hold on to Bacca in January.
Bruno Peres to Bayern Munich: 45 percent
Torino wing-back Bruno Peres has been linked to Roma for quite some time, but with Carlo Ancelotti's arrival, Bayern Munich has entered the race. The German club is the favorite to sign him since they have considerably bigger financial resources than Roma. In addition, Bruno Peres hired agent Alessandro Moggi to help him facilitate a transfer -- Moggi previously brokered the deal that brought Ciro Immobile to Borussia Dortmund.
It's likely that Bayern Munich will have to wait until the summer to sign Bruno Peres, but because he would be eligible to play for them in the Champions League they could anticipate the move. Torino will look for a similar fee (€20 million) to the one they got for Matteo Darmian last summer.
Updates on previous rumours
After Saturday's match against Fiorentina (in which he once again came off the bench), Felipe Anderson stated he wasn't sure he would be playing for Lazio in February. The winger could join Manchester United before the January transfer window closes.
Marcelo Brozovic's agent stated that he recently was in England but that he did not want to reveal the names of the clubs interested in his client. Inter was hoping to land Andrea Pirlo on a loan for reminder of the season, but now that is no longer an option as Pirlo will stay in New York. While Inter could be tempted by a big bid for Brozovic, they also really need him to get back to the Champions League which would bring massive revenues to the club.
With Liverpool signing Caulker, they are out of the race for Inter defender Andrea Ranocchia, who regardless preferred to be loaned to an Italian club to increase his chances of playing in Euro 2016.
While it was an unlikely transfer in January anyway after Zinedine Zidane's appointment, the recent transfer ban should end the speculation that Isco is leaving Real Madrid.
Roma just hired Luciano Spalletti to replace Rudi Garcia, this will impact Miralem Pjanic as Spalletti really wants to keep him for rest of season to make a push for a Champions League spot. The transfer ban Real Madrid just received increases the odds Bayern Munich or Barcelona landing Pjanic in the summer.
David covers transfer news for ESPN FC and works for Gianluca Di Marzio's website.