Juve turn to Aubameyang
Juventus could be the side to rescue Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Arsenal. The 32-year-old Gabon striker is on AFCON duty but is yet to play after testing positive for coronavirus, and is unlikely to play for his current club again. Due to an injury to Federico Chiesa, Juve need someone who can play on the flanks and as a forward, which is perfect for Aubameyang.
Africa Cup of Nations
Aubameyang to return to Arsenal for further assessment after post-Covid heart issues
Paper Round’s view: Arsenal need to get rid of the player as soon as possible, because there is nothing to be gained from having an unsettled former captain hanging around, causing unhappiness for those around him, and also for Aubameyang he does not need to waste what remains of his career. Barcelona were also said to be interested, but there is not long left of the window to act.
'I know Mo wants to stay' - Klopp backs Salah to extend Liverpool contract
Villa want to sign Olsen
Steven Gerrard is keen to further bolster his Aston Villa squad by adding Robin Olsen as another goalkeeping option. The Mirror reports that option is the Roma goalkeeper, with the 32-year-old Sweden international currently on loan at Sheffield United. The player spent last season with Everton where he played a few games under the side’s former boss Carlo Ancelotti.
Paper Round’s view: Aston Villa have both Lucas Digne and Philippe Coutinho in their ranks now after a potentially exciting transfer window this January. Olsen would clearly be less thrilling, but by adding an experienced stopper they would be able to improve competition in their squad as they look to push on from mid-table to challenging for the Champions League spots.
Burnley tempted by Carroll transfer
Burnley manager Sean Dyche could replace the outgoing Chris Wood - now a Newcastle United player - by bringing in Andy Carroll from Reading. The 33-year-old forward has used a short-term deal with the side to prove his fitness and he has one goal from seven games, and could now return to the Premier League.
Paper Round’s view: If Carroll is fit, then he would be an adequate stop-gap solution. Wood was a powerful striker and the former Newcastle could fulfil the same role. Burnley have Ashley Barnes and Dwight McNeil who can operate up front, as well as Matej Vydra, but even with Carroll that would remain an underwhelming group of strikers to try to secure survival for next year.
Rudiger could stay at Chelsea
The Telegraph reports that Antonio Rudiger could in fact stay on at Chelsea, with the player now in the last six months of his contract at Stamford Bridge. The 28-year-old German international has been linked with Real Madrid and Bayern Munich, amongst others, but the defender is prepared to listen to offers to remain with his current club, but it would require a huge signing-on bonus.
Paper Round’s view: Given Rudiger has been in and out of the first team picture at Chelsea over the course of his career, he can be forgiven for taking little for granted and focusing on what will likely be his last big contract. As Chelsea face losing Andreas Christensen, Thiago Silva and Cesar Azpilicueta this summer, it may be pragmatic to just pay up to keep Rudiger.
Africa Cup of Nations
Aubameyang misses Gabon’s clash with Ghana after fears over ‘cardiac lesions’
Newcastle's Wood transfer is deeply cynical, and all the better for it