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Liverpool to keep Christian Benteke, buy Piotr Zielinski, Leandro Paredes

The winter window might have shut, but the rumour mill rolls on. As always, Transfer Talk has its finger on the pulse when it comes to the latest rumours and gossip. See the latest deals here.

TOP STORY: New dawn for Benteke at Liverpool?

What a difference a hotly-disputed penalty can make, and not just to a weekend scoreline down in South London.

Having been strongly linked with a summer exit after enduring tough season since his arrival from Aston Villa, big-money Liverpool striker Christian Benteke -- the man who won and scored the penalty in question at Crystal Palace -- will now get a chance to revitalise his Anfield career, the Mirror reports.

It says boss Jurgen Klopp, who summoned the Belgium international off the bench at Selhurst Park, was so impressed by his cameo that he is ready to give him a fresh opportunity to stake his claim.

For his part, Benteke had earlier said he would not give up on his Liverpool future and would battle like a "warrior" to prove his worth.

"In a career you'll never have only top moments, also your difficult times," he added. "Of course, it [not playing regularly] frustrates me, but that's football too. I have to take every chance, every minute the manager gives me.

"It is hard with the big price tag because I know, with everything that I'm going to do, people are going to talk about the money."

Well, they might talk about the penalty a bit as well...

Reds keeping tabs on Serie A youngsters

Talking of Liverpool, two players who could be winging their way to Merseyside in the near future are Empoli loan duo Piotr Zielinski and Leandro Paredes, the Sun reports.

The paper says Liverpool sent scouts to the recent Serie A game at Genoa to watch Polish winger Zielinski -- also reported to be interesting Watford and Arsenal -- and Argentine midfielder Paredes doing their thing.

Klopp is a fan of 21-year-old Zielinski, who is on loan from Udinese, and Paredes, who is also 21 and is on loan from Roma. Reports in Italy have suggested that Paredes is being monitored by Manchester City.

Both fit the bill for the sort of player the German wants to bring to Liverpool -- young, technically gifted and with plenty of scope for development. Exactly the sort of player he used to unearth for Borussia Dortmund, in fact.

Costa linked with Channel-crossing change

Chelsea striker Diego Costa could be heading for Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain in a £40m move -- especially if PSG talisman Zlatan Ibrahimovic ends up departing for pastures new when his contract expires in the summer. Well, so says the Express.

It claims PSG -- who hold a 2-1 Champions League lead over Chelsea ahead of their round-of-16 clash in London this week -- would be in the running for the Brazil-born Spain international, thought to be ready to leave the Blues if they fail to qualify for next season's tournament.

Costa has been strongly linked with a summer switch back to his old club Atletico Madrid -- but the Express believes PSG's sheer financial muscle could blast them out of the race.

Want N'Golo? You Kante have him

Premier League leaders Leicester -- it's not really possible to get tired of typing that -- are preparing to offer outstanding midfielder N'Golo Kante a new deal in order to fend off interested parties in the transfer window, the Mirror reports.

Kante, a £5.6 million signing from Caen last summer (amazing to think that's what they paid for him) has been one of the stellar influences in this utterly astonishing Foxes season, and has been linked with Arsenal as the Gunners reportedly plan a multi-million pound summer revamp.

His form has led France coach Didier Deschamps to say he's in contention for a place in the Euro 2016 squad, and the banner headlines and interest he has attracted have prompted the powers that be at the King Power to put together a new contract offer sharpish.

However, it's not all positive for Leicester, the Mirror warns -- it adds that CSKA Moscow striker Ahmed Musa, a January target for Claudio Ranieri and his merry men, has said he would rather go to Arsenal.


- Dimitri Payet, in addition to pulling the strings in the West Ham team, could be the man who holds the key to the club's hopes of signing Marseille striker Michy Batshuayi, according to the Telegraph.

The paper reports that the Hammers, well and truly embroiled in the chase for the top four, have identified the 22-year-old -- who has hit 17 goals this season -- as a summer transfer priority.

Tottenham are also interested in the Belgium international, as are Juventus -- but Payet is good friends with him from their days together at Marseille, and the Telegraph says he "is understood to have started trying to convince his old teammate to link up with him once again at West Ham."

- Another potential arrival for the 'Appy 'Ammers is Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, with reports last month indicating that the Gunners would be willing to listen to offers for the former Southampton man in the summer.

And the Mail reckons they'll be listening to an offer from East London for the 22-year-old, who might also attract attention from Liverpool, Manchester United and Chelsea.

- Gaston Ramirez has said he is interested in turning his loan move to Middlesbrough from Southampton into a permanent deal if Boro, second in the Championship, end up winning promotion to the Premier League.

The Mirror quotes Uruguay international midfielder Ramirez, out of contract on the south coast at the end of the season, as saying: "If Boro get promoted, would I talk about staying? Why not? I feel I am good enough to play in the Premier League. I am fighting for that."


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