TRANSFER CONFIDENTIAL: Chelsea open talks for £53m Manuel Ugarte, Arsenal confirm their buying budget, Newcastle eye Ferran Torres and Fred is in demand on Man United’s 13-man for-sale list
- Todd Boehly is set to spend again this summer after a £600m outlay at Chelsea
- Newcastle are in the market for a former Man City star in the upcoming window
- To get Transfer Confidential sent directly as a newsletter to your inbox every Monday go to mailplus.co.uk/transferconfidential
Hello and welcome to another edition of our transfer newsletter, brought exclusively to you.
My name is Simon Jones and, as well as writing regularly for the Daily Mail and MailOnline, I’m aiming to give you insight, news and the latest chat from across the globe on all the deals taking shape ahead of this summer’s transfer window.
Below, I bring you the latest news from across the globe.
Chelsea step up pursuit of Manuel Ugarte
Chelsea have followed up their scouting of Manuel Ugarte by opening talks for the Sporting Lisbon midfielder.
The 22-year-old, who has a £53million buy-out clause, has an offer from Paris St Germain while Aston Villa were keen too.
Sporting star Manuel Ugarte could be the latest player signed by Todd Boehly for Chelsea
Boehly and Co have spent more than £600m on players in their first year of owning Chelsea
Chelsea, who are asking £75m for Mason Mount as they look to raise funds, want a holder to play alongside Enzo Fernandez and have also checked on Southampton’s Romeo Lavia, Monaco’s Youssouf Fofana and the more expensive Moises Caicedo at Brighton.
Todd Boehly is expected to splash the cash again in the summer after an outlay of more than £600m since his consortium took over.
The American will reportedly cut his day-to-day involvement in half after a torrid first year, with Chelsea suffering their worst-ever Premier League season.
PSG’s offer for Ugarte is for the buy-out clause but in stages. The French champions have also made surprise soundings for Arsenal’s Martin Odegaard. However, that looks doomed with the Norwegian key to Mikel Arteta’s plans and happy in London.
Arsenal have a transfer budget of around £180m plus sales but don’t want Odegaard to go. Leverkusen are looking to wrap up Granit Xhaka’s transfer and Newcastle want Kieran Tierney while Thomas Partey and Rob Holding could also depart to boost funds.
PSG have made surprise soundings over a shock swoop for Arsenal star Martin Odegaard
Everton are stepping up their interest in quicksilver striker El Bilal Toure following his return to Almeria’s line-up on Sunday.
Confidential readers know that Toure was injured earlier this year after setting off to sprint at 35km/h – as fast as a spinytail iguana. What? Well, let’s say quicker than a Goodison Park pitch invader. After just about preserving their Premier League status, Everton want to avoid a repeat by putting more goals into their squad.
Neal Maupay is expected to rekindle a move to Salernitana and Everton want to replace him with Toure who has scored six goals for Almeria this season, including his winner in their shock 1-0 victory over Barcelona in March.
The Mali international, 21, is valued around £25million and, even though he came on as a substitute against Valladolid on Sunday, Everton will want to ensure he has fully recovered from the injury to his right thigh that required surgery.
Everton are also keen on Manchester City’s Northern Ireland international midfielder Shea Charles. The 19-year-old was on the bench at Brentford and has admirers at Bundesliga clubs Red Bull Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund also.
Highly-rated Almeria striker El Bilal Toure could make the move to Everton this summer
Coady’s future at Everton uncertain
Conor Coady spoke with clarity following his match-saving role in Everton’s win over Bournemouth on Sunday but the defender’s future is not so clear.
Everton have the option to make Coady’s loan from Wolves permanent for £4.5m yet there are doubts whether that will happen after he was left out of Sean Dyche’s starting line-up for so long. Coady has tentative Premier League interest but would like to stay in the north for family reasons.
Former club Sheffield United are understood to be watching developments but have a restricted budget. Coady certainly made an impression on Everton fans underlining the need for change: ‘It’s been the hardest season in my career,’ he said. ‘It’s important a line is drawn in the sand now because it’s a big club and has to improve.’
Coady’s defensive partner Yerry Mina has already said his farewell to fans via Instagram as his contract ends but Jarrad Branthwaite, who has impressed on loan at PSV Eindhoven, is expected to be offered a new contract.
Conor Coady’s future at Goodison Park is uncertain and Premier League clubs are watching
Boehly’s plans could have impact on Wolves
Chelsea’s designs on Strasbourg may have a potential knock-on effect for Wolves’ recruitment plans.
The French club are being eyed by Boehly and Co as a possible investment opportunity. Strasbourg have a good reputation for developing players and could prove a perfect grounding for some of Chelsea’s youngsters, should talks progress.
Wolves are currently leading the chase for Strasbourg’s highly-rated midfielder Habib Diarra.
The 19-year-old, who has also been watched by Manchester City and Aston Villa, is keen on a move to Molineux but there are concerns that if Chelsea take a vested interest, transfer talks could be stalled.
All is not well at Wolves as the club work on keeping Julen Lopetegui content at Molineux. The Spaniard has been made aware that sales are necessary and funds relatively tight. Ruben Neves, who is admired by Barcelona, Newcastle and Arsenal, and Matheus Nunes are the most likely to be sold to raise revenue.
Roberto Firmino is waiting to see where he would fit in with Real Madrid’s plans before taking a decision on moving to Spain.
The soon-to-be free agent is on Madrid’s list for this summer as he contemplates which club he will join after leaving Liverpool.
Roberto Firmino could be heading to Spain to join Real Madrid after leaving Liverpool
One Liverpool player definitely heading to Spain, however, is the aptly named Elijah Gift. The 16-year-old joined Liverpool from Huddersfield Town’s academy but is originally from Corella in the Basque region and is returning to Athletic Bilbao for around £880,000.
Liverpool struck the deal as they have talent such as Ben Doak and Ranel Young emerging in the same position.
Liverpool are also assessing offers for Fabio Carvalho as they weigh up his next career move. Burnley are among those keen.
Chelsea prospect Lewis Hall is being monitored by Crystal Palace.
The 18-year-old, named academy player of the year by Chelsea on Sunday, has started at left-back under Frank Lampard in recent weeks but could find opportunities more limited under new manager Mauricio Pochettino. Palace may explore a loan deal for the teenager before the end of the summer.
Palace are closing on agreement with Bournemouth midfielder Jefferson Lerma who is out of contract and are still discussing a move for Brazilian winger Matheus Franca from Flamengo.
James McArthur has been told he can leave after nine years at Palace and will be followed by Luka Milivojevic.
Chelsea youngster Lewis Hall, 18, has attracted the attention of Crystal Palace and could leave
Fred fancied by Fulham as United look to offload 13 players
Manchester United midfielder Fred is attracting interest from Fulham.
The Brazilian is among 13 players earmarked for departure from Old Trafford this summer and was spotted chatting to Marco Silva post-match on Sunday. However, he has other offers too.
United are prioritising a striker with £100m the price they have in mind for Tottenham’s Harry Kane. Should talks prove problematic they will move on to other forward options before targeting sales and adding a midfielder, defender and goalkeeper.
A new contract has been agreed by David de Gea but is still to be signed off by the club’s hierarchy. Once that is done, Nottingham Forest are poised to trigger their deal for Dean Henderson and United will look for more cover.
Winger Anthony Elanga has over 12 clubs keen to take him and he is ready for a fresh challenge while there are not too many surprises in who else will be allowed to follow.
Eric Bailly has underwhelmed at Marseille and the French side don’t wish to make that move permanent. A £5m fee would have been triggered after 19 league games but they are keen to send the 28-year-old back.
Fred was spotted chatting to Fulham boss Marco Silva after United’s 1-1 draw on Sunday
The Brazilian is among 13 players earmarked for a departure from United this summer
Harry Maguire, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Alex Telles, Donny van de Beek, Brandon Williams and Anthony Martial all have question marks over their future too.
United’s Liverpool-born midfield talent Shea Lacey, a keen boxing fan, has signed up to Triple S agency, who represent Harry Maguire and Wayne Rooney. Lacey, 16, is highly-regarded at United and had attracted interest from a number of top agencies.
Fulham defender Shane Duffy, meanwhile, is in talks to join Norwich City.
Torres, who recently split with his girlfriend Luis Enrique’s daughter Sira Martinez, may be getting shunned by Barcelona too this summer as they weigh up sales.
Despite raising £40m with the departures of Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets, Barca need another £160m to break even on Financial Fair Play in he eyes of LaLiga. Keen to still add Lionel Messi, they are due to make another presentation to the league but former Manchester City flyer Torres, 23, is a candidate to go, as is Raphinha.
Former Man City winger Ferran Torres is among the players on Newcastle United’s radar
Newcastle and Palace to battle it out for Torino defender
Newcastle have held discussions over the merits of Torino centre-back Perr Schuurs.
The stylish 23-year-old Holland centre-back also has strong interest from Crystal Palace, who are wary of losing Marc Guehi this window. Torino have been trying to convince Schuurs to stay but may find it difficult to resist decent offers.
Newcastle hold an interest in Napoli’s Kim Min-jae but believe Manchester United are leading that chase ahead of themselves and PSG while Schuurs would be cheaper.
Newcastle scout Mick Tait watched Coventry City striker Viktor Gyokeres at Wembley on Saturday. The Swedish international is a £25m target for Brentford.
Brighton set to add Schwake to goalkeeping ranks
Brighton are in talks to sign Livingston’s American goalkeeper Brian Schwake after he trained with them last week.
The 21-year old, who is out of contract next month, spent the past season on loan at Scottish Championship side Greenock Morton, and would cost a minimal fee of around £250,000 as a cross-border compensation deal.
Though born in Mount Prospect, Illinois, Schwake qualifies for a European passport owing to his family hailing from Luxembourg.
It is expected to be a key week for the Bellingham family.
Real Madrid will proceed in their bid to finalise a fee for Borussia Dortmund’s England star Jude while Sunderland are ironing out an agreement for 17-year-old younger brother Jobe, as first trailed by Mail Sport.
Jude Bellingham could move a step closer to joining Real Madrid in a big week for his family
Paratici still helping Spurs despite worldwide ban
There are rumblings that, despite his ban and subsequent resignation, Fabio Paratici is still helping out Tottenham in an advisory capacity to help smooth the handover to their next sporting director.
Tottenham scouting staff are understood to have handed in recruitment recommendations to Daniel Levy last week but most decisions will pend on the club’s next key appointments as sporting director and manager.
Leicester City’s James Maddison and Brentford goalkeeper remain targets while scout Ian Broomfield watched Manchester United against Chelsea last Thursday.
Brentford are finalising their £11.3million deal for Freiburg goalkeeper Mark Flekken this week ahead of Raya’s expected departure with Hugo Lloris considering an offer from Saudi side Al Hilal.
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