January transfers: Manchester City sign Echeverri, West Ham monitor Wilson – live | Transfer window
If you just want transfers and none of my nonsense, you can keep up with our interactive done-deal tracker:
On the moment we all knew a signing wouldn’t work out, James Irving says: “Surely it doesn’t get much more foreboding than Robinho being unsure which Manchester club he had just signed for?”
Stepping away from transfers momentarily, Union Berlin manager Nenad Bjelica has been banned for three matches after shoving Bayern Munich’s Leroy Sané during his team’s 1-0 defeat last night. The Croatian coach was also fined €25,000 for his Pardew-esque behaviour at the Allianz Arena.
Jhon Durán has been linked with Chelsea and West Ham – but Unai Emery has revealed that the Colombian striker was injured during Villa’s 0-0 draw at Everton. Durán is expected to miss a number of weeks with a hamstring problem – which would seem to put paid to any chance of a loan move in this window.
Some news on Nuno Tavares, on loan at Forest from Arsenal but wanted by Marseille, care of Fabrizio Romano.
Brendan Rodgers has vowed Matt O’Riley will not be sold this month after Celtic rejected an offer from Atlético Madrid for the Denmark international. O’Riley has produced 10 goals and 12 assists this season and recently signed a contract extension that ties him to the club until 2027.
“Matt is a player we don’t want to lose and he won’t be going anywhere in January,” Rodgers said. He won his first international cap this season and Atlético Madrid are a big club in European football … but he is very much part of what we are doing. He is someone who will be here for us in the second part of the season.”
Time for a tune, and some underwhelming transfer news. Sergio León has left Spanish second-tier side Elche to join … Spanish second-tier side Eibar!
Earlier today, Blackburn rejected an £18.5m bid from Crystal Palace for Adam Wharton –and now manager Jon Dahl Tomasson has given us the tea before Monday’s FA Cup tie at home to Wrexham.
“There’s been an offer and the club has said no, which I like,” he said. “He’s a great lad, I remember last year sitting at home with his parents drinking tea to discuss his development. Now he’s a first-team player and I believe he’ll be an England player.”
Chris Wilder is anticipating a busy few days; the Sheffield United manager wants to bring in a centre-back, with Chris Basham and John Egan out injured. Wilder has also confirmed that Atlético keeper Ivo Grbic is undergoing his medical, and that Ismaila Coulibaly is leaving on loan. “The football club will announce that one later,” he breezed, having comprehensively stolen the admin’s thunder.
Gary O’Neil says that financial concerns are scuppering Wolves’ transfer plans. “Me and the recruitment team have done a lot of work on a couple of options, (but) it looks like they aren’t going to be doable financially,” he said – while adding he is happy with “the group who have done so well for us this season.” One outgoing is Jonny – the wing-back is set to join PAOK in Greece on a free transfer.
Sam Kerr has agreed an extension to her contract, which was set to expire in the summer. The Australian forward is currently sidelined with an ACL injury but her decision comes as a big boost to Chelsea, with Emma Hayes leaving this summer. Here’s more from Suzanne Wrack:
Here’s Pep on the departing Kalvin Phillips:
Sean Dyche does not expect any imminent Everton outgoings to meet Premier League profit and sustainability rules. “Certainly not that I’m aware of … we want to keep all the best players here and make sure we’re trying to at least manage the group we’ve got, and then build on it where we can,” the Everton manager told reporters.
Dyche added that any potential incomings would likely be on loan, praised Ben Godfrey’s “outstanding attitude” amid links with Leeds, Sheffield United and Genoa, and confirmed André Gomes will miss Saturday’s home FA Cup tie with Luton. He also revealed that Dele Alli has had groin surgery but that “the early signs are good”.
Read more on Claudio Echeverri, new Brighton recruit Valentín Barco and Chelsea’s one for the future, Kendry Paez:
An afternoon dose of rumours for you. Could Vinicíus Júnior be forced out of Real Madrid by Kylian Mbappé’s arrival? And who exactly is Carlos Forbs?
West Ham are about to close a deal for Phillips, and are monitoring Callum Wilson – but there could be more activity before deadline day. According to PA, Ajax winger Steven Bergwijn could be brought in, if the club find a buyer for Saïd Benrahma.
Thanks, Luke. Pep Guardiola has been speaking to reports before Manchester City’s FA Cup fourth-round tie at Spurs on Friday – and has wished Kalvin Phillips well before his imminent loan move to West Ham.
“Hopefully he can play the minutes he deserves and I couldn’t give to him. I wish him (well). I’ve said many times, he’s an exceptional human being and a football player, otherwise he wouldn’t be in the national team. Hopefully he can prove what he really is. Of course, if I give him 10-15 games in a row he would be good, but I didn’t give them to him and I feel so responsible for that.
“But, at the same time, I am honest with myself. I have players at my disposal, a squad, and I have to decide what we are looking for. All I can say is I am so grateful for his behaviour on and off the pitch and hopefully he can find minutes, and next season we will see what happens.”
Guardiola added that Ederson is fit for the trip to North London, but Erling Haaland and John Stones are still not quite ready as they continue their recovery from injury.
Niall has returned – so that’s all from me for now. Over to you, Niall.
Good news, Spurs fans: James Maddison is fit again and available for the meeting with Manchester City.
The Tottenham manager, Ange Postecoglou, said: “He’s trained all week and he is fine. He is available and ready to start … when someone is available, I assume they are ready to start. Whether they do or not depends on what I see with everyone else tomorrow and I usually make those decisions on game day. The beauty of it is he’s got through the week really well and is ready to go.”
Ben Davies and Dane Scarlett are also both training again after hamstring problems, while Dejan Kulusevski has recovered from illness. Kulusevski is one of several players Postecoglou has been forced to turn to in Maddison’s absence and Giovani Lo Celso has also helped fill the void, but he is unavailable for City’s visit tomorrow.
“There are not too many, not just in our squad but around the league, that are like Madders and we had to cover that absence in different ways,” Postecoglou said. “We’ve had Kulusevski play through there, Gio stepped in there and got some goals for us. Our front three have really picked up and we’ve got goals from set-pieces.
“Pedro (Porro) has become really creative in that midfield area so we’ve picked it up, but I guess the beauty of that is when Madders is back in there, we’re not just relying on him. Maybe at the start of the year we were a little bit more relying on him and we’ve found out through this period we don’t have to be, but having him in there certainly adds in that space for sure.”
Asked if Pep Guardiola will be thinking about his team’s poor record at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, Postecoglu said: “I’ve got no idea what’s on Pep’s mind, mate. No idea. I don’t think anyone in the game today looks at those things too closely as a predictor of what’s ahead. It’s fair to say there has been a fair bit of change in our team and their team and every game is a bit different. I’ll be surprised if there’s no goals tomorrow! I think it will be a great challenge and it should be a cracking game.” (PA Media)
Blackburn have rejected Crystal Palace’s £18.5million offer for Adam Wharton. Palace’s bid was a guaranteed £15m and the Eagles are now considering whether to improve their offer.
Any bid will need to include a loan back to Rovers for the rest of the season, with just a week to go before the transfer deadline, leaving Blackburn with little time to source a replacement.
Palace have also been linked with Genk’s Daniel Muñoz with boss Roy Hodgson confirming he had watched the midfielder on video. Wharton – an England Under-20 international – has made 29 appearances this season, scoring once, having only made his Blackburn debut at the start of last season after joining the club when he was six years old.
The 19-year-old has impressed with his maturity this term, despite Rovers’ disappointing form in the Championship. Jon Dahl Tomasson’s side are 17th, 10 points adrift of the play-off places and host Wrexham in the FA Cup fourth round on Monday. Blackburn have already rejected two bids of £1million and £1.5million for striker Sam Gallagher from Ipswich this month. (PA Media)
Courtesy of the good people at Reuters, yet more here from Pochettino, who was speaking before Chelsea’s FA Cup encounter with Aston Villa tomorrow night.
On Cole Palmer, who arrived from Manchester City in September: “We are optimistic always when we sign a player. It’s true he’s doing fantastic. After six or seven months he’s doing a very good job. We’re so happy with his impact. He is helping the team to achieve things that we wanted.”
Ben Chilwell started against Middlesbrough, and came on as a substitute in Chelsea’s last league game having been out since September with a hamstring injury, but is not certain to start against Villa.
“We are assessing him to see if he can cope with another game in three days,” Pochettino said. “It’s not a mental problem. It’s not only convincing him to trust his body, it’s to trust with us and the way we work, but he’s always very optimistic. We need to be careful, the player always wants to play.”
West Ham are monitoring developments around Newcastle’s Callum Wilson. Newcastle have made it clear they’re open to sales this month and West Ham are interested in a striker. It looks like an unlikely deal, though – you have to take Wilson’s injury record into account. He’s also been linked with Chelsea, United and Arsenal.
Jürgen Klopp is speaking before Liverpool’s FA Cup fourth-round meeting against Norwich on Sunday.
Firstly, on the Carabao Cup semi-final win over Fulham: “The response in the dressing room was really cool. It was nice to see the reaction of the boys.”
Then comes a fitness update on Andy Robertson, Dominik Szoboszlai and Trent Alexander-Arnold: “We will have to see. Robbo is physically ready. It was good for him to be in a matchday squad (v Fulham) … he’s completely in the normal training schedule. Like Dom (Szoboszlai) from tomorrow on – that means he’s ready for minutes. With Trent, is it now, or the game after? We have to see … I have to make a decision there. That’s it, pretty much … it would be very helpful if they could be involved but we have to see
On the controversy surrounding Mo Salah, and his return from Afcon: “We didn’t speak yet about it … most people in Egypt understand … we have exactly the same target as Egypt. Make Mo fit, as quickly as possible … that’s the one thing. What people say is one thing, and what is right is another thing. All parts agreed that is makes sense he does the rehab here, and that is what we are doing now.
“We have a season to play, and we want him fit … but if he is fit earlier, he will go back, so that would be a win-win … the rest is blown-up discussions … because you (media) have to react on everything.”
Added to what Niall posted below, Chelsea’s Pochettino also said that Villa’s Emery is one of the best coaches in the world.
Big Jürg – that’s the Liverpool manager, Jurgen Klopp – is up in front of all his favourite journalists soon.
Unai Emery just had a chat with the media about potential signings this month. “We are analysing deeply how we will finish this season, with the objective we are facing,” says the contemplative Spaniard.
“This year we are in Europe, the FA Cup, maybe that changes after tomorrow, and then we are more or less in the Premier League, being consistent, keeping in the top seven positions … it’s not clear we are going to get (sign) someone if we are not really believing he is going to increase our level.”
Has this window been different to normal? “Usually, clubs prepare their squad for one year, in summer. Now I think there aren’t teams able to spend more money like (they do) in summer. Our situation is the same.”
Time to hand over to Luke McLaughlin for the latest lunchtime news, press conference updates and so much more.
As we tick past £300m spent in Europe’s big five leagues, catch up with all the men’s transfer window deals with our handy guide:
Plenty of FA Cup press conferences coming up this afternoon. Chelsea’s Mauricio Pochettino has spoken to the press and played a straight bat on transfers.
“Too many rumours; player in, player out. At the moment, we have nothing to say. We work really hard about different things in different areas. We will communicate if something happens. We’re desperate to win the title but not to sign players. The last week is always a busy week so we need to be happy for whatever happens.”
“On the subject of big money transfers destined to fail and the moment it was clear for everyone to see,” writes Graeme Harley. “Tiémoué Bakayoko and his 30-minute disasterclass for Chelsea against Watford in 2017-18 is a particular favourite.”
Moscardo joins São Paulo defender Lucas Beraldo in moving from Brazil’s biggest city to Paris this January. But what can he offer PSG? Well, Moscardo has usually played for Corinthians as a deep-lying midfielder, able to carry the ball forward and quickly change the game, in the mould of Declan Rice, for instance.
“I like the (No 6) position, marking, a position that demands a lot, especially at Corinthians, being a pure player, who runs a lot, who gives himself,” Moscardo told Globo last year. “But I also have technical quality. I can play as a No.8, I think I have the strength to arrive in the area to finish the plays.”
Another one! PSG have confirmed the arrival of Gabriel Moscardo from Corinthians. The teenage midfielder will be loaned back to his club in Brazil until the summer, and also requires surgery on a foot problem discovered during his medical; the fee is reportedly in the region of €20m (£17.1m).
More on Manchester City’s new recruit:
Here’s more from Ed Aarons on Crystal Palace’s failed bid for Blackburn midfielder Adam Wharton. The injury-hit club are pondering whether to bid again, and are also interested in Genk right-back Daniel Muñoz.
Things are heating up nicely. The Evening Standard’s Nizaar Kinsella reports that Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United could be tempted to move for Callum Wilson, who is reportedly available for £18m.
Wilson is 31 years old but in 215 Premier League games, he has 86 goals and 27 assists – meaning he consistently scores or sets up a goal roughly every other game. A valuable potential strike rate, wherever your club is in the table.
Here’s more on City’s latest young superstar signing, who was included in our Next Gen class of 2023, from Juan Carlos Pasman:
Born in Chaco, Echeverri is an authentic River Plate academy product. Talented with excellent close control and dribbling skills, owing to an exceptional first touch, he is a first-rate passer of the ball and can score too. He is a classic No 10 in a similar vein to other River graduates, such as Ariel Ortega, Marcelo Gallardo and Pablo Aimar. He exploded onto the international scene at the South American U17 championship and will lead the charge as his country aim to claim the only title they are now missing: the Under-17 World Cup. Has already been training with the senior national team, impressing – among others – Ángel Di María with his playing style and attitude. A promotion to River Plate’s first-team squad under Martín Demichelis quickly followed.
An official signing! It’s been in the works for some time, but Manchester City have confirmed the arrival of midfielder Claudio Echeverri from River Plate. He has signed a contract until June 2028, and will move to the Premier League next January after City paid a reported initial fee of £12.5m.
Lee Wilson writes on Romelu Lukaku: “As a Roma fan, he is probably our most reliable player this season. Last summer, when Chelsea made it clear they didn’t want him, his people spoke to Inter, then Juve and finally Roma. He was frequently linked to Saudi Arabia but didn’t want to go there.”
“I don’t think that mindset has changed, and his comments were probably born of politeness and the fact that we were there out of a contractual obligation to our new shirt sponsors, Riyadh Season. However, given Chelsea want €43m for his services, he might end up in a bit of a fix. Roma would love to keep him but he’s probably not affordable, and he may have burned his bridges with Inter and Juventus.
“It could be that he’s being more than polite, just in case he has no other option in summer. If Chelsea refuse to lower their price, it may be that he is forced to move to Saudi if if he wants actual game time. It’s a shame because he seems like a decent human and when he’s good, he is bloody amazing.”
Atlético Madrid are set to sign Royal Antwerp midfielder Arthur Vermeeren later today. The 18-year-old rising star had also been linked with Manchester United and Tottenham, but has opted for endless shuttle runs under Diego Simeone instead.
Some Championship rumours and idle speculation: Leicester are closing in on Inter midfielder Stefano Sensi. Leeds are reportedly keen on out-of-favour Everton defender Ben Godfrey, and are battling Southampton for Burnley winger Manuel Benson, with Ipswich and Birmingham also keen.
Sunderland want to bring in Bournemouth’s Kieffer Moore and Barnsley midfielder Callum Styles; and two Coventry midfielders are attracting interest, with Ben Sheaf on Luton’s radar and Calum O’Hare – who is out of contract this summer – being watched closely by Southampton, Leicester and Burnley.
“After selling Fernando Torres for £50m and buying Andy Carroll for £35m, I first realised it wouldn’t work out on seeing big Andy try to run and turn at the same time,” says Nick Smith. Still, poor Fernando had a bit of a nightmare at Chelsea, too.
A question for you, readers: when was the moment you realised that a big-money signing was never going to work out? To give an example, here’s Eliaquim Mangala proving he was not a £42m defender in his second game for Manchester City.
Plenty of big-name players appear to be agitating for a move away from Saudi Arabia, but Romelu Lukaku doesn’t seem to have got the memo.
“In the next two years I see Saudi Pro League becoming one of the best in the world, if not the best,” the on-loan Roma striker has said. “The clubs make a lot of effort to bring the big players here. They are improving a lot.”
In his defence, Lukaku was speaking in Saudi Arabia, after Roma’s 2-1 friendly win over Al-Shabab. Lukaku got the winner for Daniele De Rossi’s side in Riyadh.
Away from transfer business, Forest Green have appointed Steve Cotterill as their new manager. In a clear change of direction after Troy Deeney’s brief tenure at the club, FGR are going with experience to try and escape the drop back to the National League.
Cotterill made his name down the road from the New Lawn at Cheltenham Town, and was most recently in charge of Shrewsbury Town, leaving that job in June 2023. He arrives at Forest Green with the club six points from safety at the foot of League Two.
What does Nuno Espírito Santo have planned for Nottingham Forest in the next week? “Has to be busy, definitely.” Yes, Nuno – that’s what we like to hear. “We have to take care of a lot of situations. Ideally we want things done sooner rather than later.”
Forest will have to trim back their unwieldy squad before they can bring anyone in, and Nuno wants to make sure the club find “the right places” for outgoing players. “That takes time because you have a lot of people and parts involved – the club wanting the player, agents, us, the player. Putting all those things together takes time.”
Nuno takes his side to Bristol City in the FA Cup fourth round on Friday, and then host Arsenal next Tuesday before the window closes. Two attacking players on Forest’s radar are Dortmund’s Gio Reyna and Ajax winger Carlos Forbs (formerly a Manchester City academy player) – but the club face competition for both players.
Also last night: Chelsea moved into the Women’s Champions League knockout stages with a 2-1 home win over Real Madrid. Emma Hayes is in the market for a new striker, with Sam Kerr out long-term – and Sky are reporting that Levante’s Mayra Ramirez could be the answer. The Colombia forward is expected to cost more than the £250,000 the Blues paid for Pernille Harder in 2020, which was a world record at the time.
In case you missed it, last night Bayern Munich confirmed they’re no longer pursuing a move for Kieran Tripper – but are still hoping to sign Nordi Mukiele from PSG before the window closes.
Bayern’s only new signing this month, Eric Dier, made his debut in their 1-0 win over Union Berlin – and his post-match interview is dividing social media. Some say he’s affecting a German accent, Shteve style; others are claiming that’s just the way he speaks. The jury’s out …
If you’re not familiar with Adam Wharton – subject of a reported £18.5m Palace bid today – my Blackburn-supporting colleague informs me that he’s a creative midfielder who can pass between the lines. Born in the town and playing for Rovers alongside his brother, centre-back Scott, he’s something of a local hero – and still has a long-term contract at the club. He can drop a mean shoulder too, so I’m told.
Chelsea are yet to make any firm moves on their potential interest in the Aston Villa striker Jhon Durán, and are not planning a move for Karim Benzema as things stand.
West Ham made a loan enquiry for Duran which was knocked back as Villa would prefer to have a replacement sorted first, with Unai Emery’s side still in the hunt in three different competitions.
Crystal Palace are one of the Premier League clubs expected to spend over the next week, and David Ornstein reports that they have made an £18.5m bid for Blackburn midfielder Adam Wharton. Rovers are thought to have turned the offer down, and would want to keep Wharton at Ewood Park on loan until the summer if a fee could be agreed.
Let’s kick off with a deal that might finally be done today: Kalvin Phillips is expected to complete his move to West Ham on a loan until the end of the season, with an option for a permanent deal in the summer. The former Leeds player is due to undergo his medical this morning before being registered in David Moyes’ squad, although they don’t play again until next Thursday against Bournemouth, so there’s no big rush.
Welcome back. It’s deadline day in a week’s time, but barring a sudden change of pace, this window will not come close to the blockbuster spending frenzy of last January.
£388m has been spent so far this month across Europe’s big five men’s leagues, which sounds like (and is) a lot of money, until you compare it to the £966m outlay of a year ago.
So, this window has more a slow-burning, arthouse vibe, one for the true transfer heads. Not much has happened, nobody’s really sure what happens next, but it’s bound to get interesting soon, right?