Man City are ‘actively’ exploring a surprise Arsenal transfer for a wantaway player who’s transfer valuation has emerged, while Chelsea have lucked into a striker signing and Brighton have pulled off another transfer masterstroke – all in Friday’s Transfer Gossip.
MAN CITY TO RAID ARSENAL
Pep Guardiola is gunning for additions on the sides of his defence this summer and a report claims he’s turned his attention to Arsenal full-back, Kieran Tierney.
The Scotland international, 25, was a £25m signing from Celtic back in 2019. Tierney has proven himself a vibrant and dependable performer when on the pitch, though those instances have become increasingly rare of late.
Injury issues have ravaged his time south of the border. The subsequent arrival of Oleksandr Zinchenko then provided Tierney with his greatest challenge in club football to date.
Zinchenko has been heavily favoured by Mikel Arteta and the Ukrainian has enjoyed a superb campaign on the whole. However, a consequence could be his back-up in Tierney makes way.
Newcastle are known to be following Tierney’s situation as the summer transfer window draws near. However, according to Football Insider, so too are Man City.
Guardiola is seeking defensive reinforcements and specifically targeting versatile players who can occupy multiple positions. Brentford’s Aaron Hickey is one player he’s eyeing and per FI, Tierney is another.
It’s claimed Man City are ‘actively’ working on a deal for Tierney who ‘is open to a move’. Explaining why, his lack of minutes under Arteta in recent times is noted.
Moving to the Etihad would provide a ‘fresh challenge’ and the path could be cleared if Aymeric Laporte is sold.
A Tierney arrival would then see the Scot compete with Nathan Ake for the left-sided role in Guardiola’s new 3-2-4-1 formation. In the event he reverts to a back four, Tierney can occupy a more traditional left-back role.
FI claim the likelihood of Tierney leaving this summer is ‘high’. The Gunners reportedly value the defender around the £30m mark.
A Man City move for Tierney would come as a surprise on two levels, the first being City are arguably the strongest team in England and they’d be signing a player who isn’t a starter at another club.
The second surprise would come in the form of Arsenal strengthening a direct title rival in the process.
Clearly, the Gunners must carefully consider both if they want to sell Tierney, and if so, whether selling to Man City is the right call.
CHELSEA GIFTED STRIKER SIGNING
A ‘compromise’ is likely to see Joao Felix return to Stamford Bridge once again next season, though the deal won’t entirely be to Chelsea’s liking, per a report.
Felix, 23, was a high profile loan addition at Chelsea in the winter window. The Portuguese’s relationship with Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone had soured, with that breakdown the spark that ignited Felix’s exit.
Felix has looked bright in west London, though has been unable to remedy the Blues’ disastrous campaign in front of goal.
In any case, a fresh report from the Sun has claimed the versatile forward is primed to return to Chelsea next season, though via a second loan and not a permanent deal.
The outlet state Atletico’s incredible upturn in form since Felix left is emboldening Simeone to cut ties with the forward once and for all. Atletico have won 11, drawn three and lost just once in LaLiga since Felix made way.
Chelsea hold an interest in reuniting with Felix beyond the current campaign, though are put off by Atletico’s hefty €100m (approx. £88m) asking price.
As such, a ‘compromise’ that would see Felix return to Chelsea for a second loan spell is deemed the likeliest outcome.
Felix had initially hoped Chelsea would qualify for the Champions League before giving the greenlight to returning. However, with Atletico turning their back, Felix is running out of options.
One final hurdle must be overcome before Felix can return a second time: assurances he’ll feature heavily under the next Chelsea manager.
Felix has been benched in each of the last three matches by interim boss Frank Lampard. However, the Sun suggest odds-on favourite for the role, Mauricio Pochettino, might fancy a Romelu Lukaku-Joao Felix partnership to get Chelsea back among the goals next season.
BRIGHTON FORGE WATFORD AGREEMENT
Brighton have struck an ‘agreement in principle’ to sign Watford frontman, Joao Pedro.
That’s according to Fabrizio Romano, with the trusted reporter tweeting personal terms have been signed off.
Pedro, 21, has bagged 11 goals and four assists in the Championship for the Hornets this term. He’s capable of playing literally anywhere across a frontline and the deal should be wrapped up ‘soon’.
Romano subsequently added Pedro was a key target for Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi who’s clearly liked what he’s seen.
The Seagulls have accelerated their move in anticipation of rival interest and per Romano, are on the cusp of yet another transfer masterstroke.