Transfer Talk: Spurs would love to take Eric Bailly off Man United's hands
The transfer window for all of Europe's big five leagues is closed, but that doesn't stop Transfer Talk from rummaging around about who will be moving where come January.
Tottenham want Bailly
Tottenham would very much like to sign Eric Bailly, who has swiftly and suddenly fallen from grace at Manchester United over the last few months.
Restricted to just three league starts this season, the Ivory Coast defender was hauled off after just 19 minutes of Saturday's 3-2 comeback win over Newcastle. However, Mauricio Pochettino is said to be a big admirer of Bailly and is therefore keen to make a move to sign the out-of-favour centre-back in the January transfer window.
The Daily Star reckons there may prove to be a couple of sticking points, with United's £30 million-plus valuation and their reluctance to sell to a direct rival likely to make things difficult for Spurs.
There is also the small matter that Arsenal are also rumoured to be interested, though we can only imagine the same potential roadblocks apply to Unai Emery's team as well.
Liverpool leave Man United to fight over Ramsey
Aaron Ramsey is set to leave Arsenal when his contract expires at the end of the season, as talks on a new deal have now collapsed past the point of salvation.
But sources have told ESPN FC that there is no current interest from Liverpool despite the Evening Standard reporting that both Jurgen Klopp and Jose Mourinho (assuming it is still Mourinho in charge at Man United then) are keen to keep him in the Premier League a little while longer.
Klopp does want a central midfielder, but other sources have told ESPN FC that his main target is PSG's Adrien Rabiot, who he tried to sign when he was Borussia Dortmund coach.
The German boss has followed Rabiot's progress very closely with the pair have already spoken on the phone to discuss a move, so it looks like Rabiot will win the battle of the free transfers over Ramsey... at least in Liverpool's eyes.
Lucas turned down Real Madrid move
Atletico Madrid defender Lucas Hernandez has admitted that Real Madrid made contact about triggering his €80m release clause this summer, after he won the World Cup with France.
"My agent told me about a possibility of Real Madrid," he told RMC radio. "But I told him I could not do that. Atletico is my home, my club, they have given me everything. I'm an honest person and could do not go to Madrid. I want to stay here a long time, but football moves very fast, if there were an offer impossible to refuse..."
The versatile defender is under contract at Atletico until 2022, having signed an extended deal in summer 2017, after reported interest from Manchester City and Barcelona.
Lucas' brother and fellow Atletico youth product Theo did move across the capital to join Real for €24m just 12 months ago. But the 21-year-old was sent on a season long loan at Real Sociedad, having found it difficult to secure playing time at the Bernabeu.
Woodward vetoed Perisic deal
Manchester United missed out on signing Ivan Perisic two summers ago because the club's board refused to spend an extra £3 million on the Inter Milan winger.
The Nerazzurri valued Perisic at £48 million and while United were willing to stretch to £45 million, the Evening Standard claims that vice-chairman Ed Woodward was not prepared to go any higher due to the 29-year-old's advancing age and "lack of star appeal."
According to the Standard, that money was spent six months later when acquiring Alexis Sanchez (also 29) from Arsenal, with Mourinho left to stew after failing to land one of his top transfer targets. Mourinho subsequently asked Woodward to lodge a renewed offer for Perisic but the Croatian forward's fine performances at the World Cup had seen his value skyrocket beyond the point of reason.
-- Barcelona have already opened talks to sign Matthijs De Ligt from Ajax ahead of next summer's transfer window, according to Mundo Deportivo. De Ligt has told the club that his priority would be to play for Barcelona with the club seeing him as a long-term replacement for Gerard Pique - and his price would be around €70m.
But the club know it won't be easy to sign the Dutch defender and so have drawn up a list of alternative targets that, according to Spanish journalist Gerard Romero, includes Napoli's Kalidou Koulibaly and Milan Skriniar of Inter Milan.
- Jermain Defoe has told ESPN FC he would not rule out a return to the MLS and said his move to Toronto in 2014 had come too early in his career.
-- Lille winger Nicolas Pepe is being discussed as potential replacement for Franck Ribery or Arjen Robben at Bayern Munich, according to Sport Bild.
- Claudio Marchisio's father has told Tuttosport that AC Milan offered double the wages of Zenit St Petersburg did, before the midfielder left Juventus.