Zinchenko out, Cucurella in at City
Arsenal are on the verge of signing Oleksandr Zinchenko from Manchester City, according to widespread reports including the Evening Standard. The Gunners are set to pay £30m up front with a potential £2m in add-ons, while according to the Mail, City will turn their attentions to bringing Brighton’s Marc Cucurella to the Etihad for around £50m once Zinchenko is off their books.
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Paper Round’s view: City’s strengthening of the clubs below them continues, but so do their own squad enhancements. A team willing to sell Gabriel Jesus, Raheem Sterling and now Zinchenko evidently do not fear the clubs they are selling to, but this approach could be to Arsenal’s gain – a club intent on returning to the Champions League and making smart moves in their bid to do so.
Brentford want £40m for Toney
Brentford do not want to sell Ivan Toney amid interest from Leeds, Newcastle, West Ham and Manchester United for the striker – the i reports. After 12 goals in his first full season in the Premier League, Toney is wanted by a host of clubs, but with three years left on his contract, Brentford would only consider bids around £40m before selling the forward.
Paper Round’s view: That should be that, you’d suspect, unless Newcastle get so desperate in their striker search they deem £40m for Toney a worthwhile investment. Leeds have had an influx of cash, of course, but despite selling Kalvin Phillips and Raphinha, this doesn’t feel like a suitable way to spend some of that money.
Real want eight more out
Real Madrid are looking to sell eight more players this summer after Gareth Bale headlined the early departures, Marca reports. With Aurelien Tchouameni and Antonio Rudiger joining Real, Carlo Ancelotti remains keen to offload those surplus to requirements, with Marco Asensio fronting an unwanted list that also includes Dani Ceballos, Takefusa Kubo, Jesus Vallejo, Mariano Diaz, Borja Mayoral, Alvaro Odriozola and Reinier Jesus.
Paper Round’s view: A necessary cycle for all clubs, but Real more than most really have seemed to stack up a pile of players they haven’t needed or wanted for some time. The intrigue will be around who else they get in, or want to get in, as it has gone quiet on that front.
Werner wants out?
Timo Werner’s “I could be happy everywhere” comments are enough for the Daily Maul to suggest the Chelsea striker may believe his future lies elsewhere. Following the arrival of Raheem Sterling, Werner said during Chelsea’s pre-season tour of the USA: “First of all, the most important thing is that I am happy. I am happy when I play and score goals. That’s the fact. That’s what I should take care of and the other things will come.” When pressed, he said the “happy everywhere” line, although it may not be clear until the start of the season how heavily he features in Thomas Tuchel’s plans.
Paper Round’s view: A winter World Cup really is unique, and it throws up this scenario where players out of favour at the very start of the season may seek a move before deadline day in order to force their way into – or remain part of – national team plans… Werner could well fit that category, so it’s one to watch for sure.
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