Euro Paper Talk: Arsenal target to decide own future as Barcelona leave door ajar after contact; Everton work on free midfield signing
Barcelona have tasked an exciting Arsenal target with choosing his own next step, while Everton have found a midfielder they can sign for free – all in Thursday’s European transfer gossip.
ARSENAL TRANSFER TO BE DECIDED BY TARGET HIMSELF
Arsenal have made contact for the signature of Ansu Fati in a move that one of his potential competitors would seemingly welcome – prompting a Spanish source to assess the likelihood of a transfer.
There have been high hopes for Fati at Barcelona, who chose him as the next bearer of the number 10 jersey after the departure of Lionel Messi.
Fati’s progress has been stunted because of injuries, though, and now he faces a new challenge of fitting into Xavi’s latest tactical system.
Therefore, the winger has an uncertain future ahead of the summer transfer window. With that in mind, other clubs are sensing an opportunity to sign him.
According to Cadena COPE, Arsenal have made contact with Jorge Mendes, who is Fati’s agent, to discuss the feasibility of a transfer.
As a left winger, Fati would largely be competing for a place with Gabriel Martinelli at Arsenal. Intriguingly, Martinelli revealed they are friends back in 2020.
At the time, reflecting on a previous trial with Barcelona, he said: “They (Barcelona) were very good, I made the most of it and did my best.
“Seeing how they train, knowing the structure of the club, the city… was a dream come true too.
“I even trained with Ansu Fati and we became friends.
“He helped me a lot there and now he’s playing on the main team. He is a boy who deserves everything good that is happening to him.”
Martinelli has been establishing his own importance to Arsenal this season, and has recently been given extra competition in the shape of Leandro Trossard.
But if Fati becomes available due to Barcelona’s need to raise funds, he would be an appealing player to pick up. Besides, he, Martinelli and Trossard are all versatile players who can adapt to different roles.
Barcelona decide Ansu Fati transfer stance
Fati’s contract, though, is due to last until 2027, so he might be an expensive target.
According to the latest from Marca, Fati’s future is in his own hands. Barcelona will not put him on the transfer list themselves, but he might have to ask to leave if he is unhappy with his role.
Marca relays that Fati knows his performances need to improve. After all, he has only scored three goals in 20 La Liga appearances this season, with none since October.
That said, he has only completed 90 minutes twice in all competitions this season. Therefore, he may just need to win Xavi over again.
Marca concludes that “a good offer that convinces all parties” could lead to Fati’s transfer. Only time will tell if Arsenal can put something like that on the table.
Currently top of the Premier League, they are becoming an attractive destination again. But swooping for a talent like Fati for big money might be one of their most ambitious moves yet.
EVERTON EYE BARGAIN MIDFIELD ARRIVAL
Everton are aiming to sign Hoffenheim midfielder Dennis Geiger on a free transfer in the summer. (Kicker)
The representatives of Liverpool midfielder Naby Keita are offering him to Serie A sides ahead of the expiry of his contract this summer. (Inter Live)
Newcastle face having to pay the full €60m release clause if they want to sign Manuel Ugarte from Sporting CP. (O Jogo)
Inter have pencilled in a meeting with Chelsea in March to discuss keeping Romelu Lukaku for longer. (Gazzetta Dello Sport)
Barcelona believe they may be able to raid Manchester City for Bernardo Silva, Ilkay Gundogan and Rodri. (Mundo Deportivo)
Inter are targeting Leicester full-back Timothy Castagne as a potential replacement for Denzel Dumfries. (Inter Live)
Real Madrid are spying the chance to sign Erling Haaland from Manchester City. (Mundo Deportivo)
BELLINGHAM NARROWS DOWN NEXT CLUB LIST
Jude Bellingham has crossed Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain off his list of potential next clubs. (Sport1)
Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino is being indicated in the direction of Inter. (Gazzetta Dello Sport)
Barcelona will not be making any attempt to re-sign Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Chelsea in the summer. (Diario Sport)
Everton remain one of Isco’s only options if he is to exit free agency before the end of the season. (Estadio Deportivo)
Tottenham made an attempt to sign Franck Kessie from Barcelona in January, as did his former side AC Milan. (Diario Sport)
Manchester City have appreciated Chelsea full-back Ben Chilwell for several years. (Fabrizio Romano)
Barcelona are optimistic about extending the contract of Sergi Roberto until 2024. (COPE)
Jose Mourinho will only stay at Roma if they qualify for the Champions League and set out clear objectives for his third season. (Calciomercato)
AND THE REST
PSG are planning to sign a big-name centre-forward in the summer. (After Foot)
Jarrad Branthwaite says he will consider staying at PSV after his loan spell from Everton ends. (ESPN)
Besiktas have agreed to sign Omar Colley from Sampdoria for €2.5m. (Fabrizio Romano)
The Brazil national team are preparing an approach for Real Madrid’s Carlo Ancelotti to be their next manager. (GloboEsporte)
RB Leipzig will not use their option to buy Abdou Diallo from Paris Saint-Germain after his loan spell. (Bild)
Valencia are looking at former River Plate manager Marcelo Gallardo. (Plaza Deportiva)
Sampdoria are hoping to add ex-Stoke flop Jese as a free signing. (Il Secolo XIX)
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