Transfer predictor as Morata to Atletico Madrid gets a 9 but Ndombele to Juventus is a 4

David Cooper 21/01/2019
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Alvaro Morata

More than halfway through January, the winter transfer window has remained unusually quiet, with there being more speculation than action at this point over various proposed moves.

The rumour mill remains in overdrive, however, with news of potential deals flying thick and fast.

We’re running the rule over four of the latest transfer rumours doing the rounds, with our analysis and predictions below.

ALVARO MORATA – From Chelsea to Atletico Madrid

Chelsea’s out-of-favour forward Alvaro Morata is set to move to Real Madrid’s cross-town rivals Atletico Madrid, according to Marca.

Why it will happen: Alvaro Morata has simply not clicked in the Premier League and Gonzalo Higuain is touted to take his place at Stamford Bridge. Atletico Madrid need a striker, given Diego Costa has been extremely inconsistent this season, scoring just once in La Liga.

Why it won’t happen: This seems like a done deal, but there can always be complications in the form of competition from another club. But with Sevilla pulling out of a potential move, it’s likely that Morata will be sporting an Atletico shirt by the end of the month.

Prediction: The Spaniard knows the league and has performed well during his time at Madrid. Atletico know what they are doing and Chelsea are ready with a replacement too. This deal can prove to be a nice move for all parties involved.

Rating – 9/10

PHILIPPE COUTINHO – From Barcelona to Chelsea

Philippe Coutinho has never really settled into life at Barcelona and several clubs have decided to capitalise on this failed marriage. Daily Express reports that Chelsea have made contact with Barcelona over a £100 million transfer for the Brazilian.

Why it will happen: Coutinho has played in and dominated the Premier League but has failed to find his feet in Spain. Chelsea could use his versatility after Cesc Fabregas’s departure and Willian hitting a run of poor form. The former Liverpool man can be a great multi-utility player.

Why it won’t happen: Barcelona will surely be more patient with the player. Even if they decide to sell the 26-year-old, the price will be at least close to how much they bought him for. It’s unlikely that any club will match the nine figure bid.

Prediction: Ousmane Dembele is sidelined with an ankle injury and the Brazilian has a good chance to remind the world of his capabilities. Coutinho can be a good fit at Stamford Bridge, but expect him to stay at Barcelona and fight for his spot.

Rating – 3/10

Tanguy Ndombele – From Lyon to Juventus

Juventus are pushing for a move for highly-rated Lyon midfielder Ndombele, according to Gianluca Di Marzio.

Why it will happen: It would be hard for any player to reject a move that would see them share the field with Cristiano Ronaldo. Juventus can lure Ndombele with the prospect of winning trophies and a place in the starting line-up soon.

Why it won’t happen: Lyon are in the last-16 of the Champions League themselves and it’s extremely unlikely they will let one of their best players leave mid-season. Since Ndombele is cup-tied, Juventus may opt against signing him.

Prediction: Manchester City are also after the 19-year-old and they could enter into a bidding war with the Italian giants. In any case, the transfer will probably happen in the summer and Lyon should be able to survive the winter window without losing one of their hottest properties.

Rating – 4/10

BERNARDO SILVA – From Manchester City to Real Madrid

Of course, there has to be a player linked to Madrid every other day, given their poor season is begging to be rescued by a world class star. Bernardo Silva is the latest player to be linked with the Spanish giants, Mirror reports.

Why it will happen: Madrid can lure Silva with a direct entry to their starting line-up as they have been struggling on the left side in recent months. Gareth Bale is often out injured and then poor when fit, therefore a replacement is needed.

Why it won’t happen: Silva is a crucial part of City’s squad and Pep Guardiola clearly has the Portuguese in his long-term plan. The 24-year-old is seen as the heir to his namesake David Silva and the Premier League champions will do anything to keep him.

Prediction: The only thing that can come out of this reported rumour is a new contract for Silva. It’s unlikely he will leave City anytime soon and the former Monaco man could use this interest for a fresh contract.

Rating – 3/10

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Transfer predictor: Gonzalo Higuain to Chelsea gets a 9, Sebastian Rudy to Man City gets a 5

David Cooper 20/01/2019
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More than halfway through January, the winter transfer window has remained unusually quiet, with there being more speculation than action at this point over various proposed moves.

The rumour mill remains in overdrive, however, with news of potential deals flying thick and fast.

We’re running the rule over four of the latest transfer rumours doing the rounds, with our analysis and predictions below.

GONZALO HIGUAIN – From Juventus to Chelsea

Juventus striker Higuain will join Chelsea on loan next week until the end of the season, according to Daily Star Sunday.

Why it will happen: Alvaro Morata and Olivier Giroud have struggled for form at Stamford Bridge and the Blues will be enticed by the prospect of signing a proven marksman in Higuain.

Why it won’t happen: Higuain may well be past his best and the 31-year-old has failed to fire on loan at AC Milan, scoring just six goals this campaign.

Prediction: The Argentine may be aging but should still deliver in the short term, given Morata’s poor form this past season.

Rating – 9/10

NABIL FEKIR – From Lyon to Liverpool

The Frenchman has fuelled talk he could be on his way to Liverpool next summer, according to French publication Le Progres.

Why it will happen: Liverpool are still seeking a like-for-like replacement for Philippe Coutinho in order to given them more options in attack and would be willing to pay the £60 million fee required to secure the 25-year-old’s services.

Why it won’t happen: The Reds pulled out of a potential deal during the summer due to concerns over an old knee injury that Fekir suffered. Could the same concerns remain?

Prediction: It may rumble on for a bit, but Liverpool seems like a good fit for Fekir. It just depends whether Lyon would accept a bid for one of their star players.

Rating – 4/10

SEBASTIAN RUDY – Schalke to Man City

Manchester City are set to make a surprise loan move for Schalke star Rudy, according to Sunday Express.

Why it will happen: Pep Guardiola wants cover for midfielder Fernandinho and knows the German well from his time at Bayern Munich.

Why it won’t happen: West Ham’s rising star Declan Rice and Wolves gem Ruben Neves are more long-term options. Guardiola may act against the move due to Rudy’s dire form this season.

Prediction: It wouldn’t be a bad move to sign the 28-year-old, especially if City need an emergency solution until the end of the campaign.

Rating – 5/10

DENIS SUAREZ

Arsenal are set to sign Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez this week, the Star reports.

Why it will happen: The 25-year-old has struggled for first-team action at the Camp Nou and has decided he needs to leave the club in order to get more playing time.

Why it won’t happen: Only if something drastic happens. A late swoop from another team or if negotiations over personal terms collapse.

Prediction: The Gunners may well bite the bullet and meet the £20 million asking price for the Spaniard who could be a real star under Unai Emery.

Rating – 8/10

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Transfer predictor: Joao Felix to Liverpool is a 6 and Krzysztof Piatek to AC Milan gets a 9

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More than halfway through January, the winter transfer window has remained unusually quiet, with there being more speculation than action at this point over various proposed moves.

The rumour mill remains in overdrive, however, with news of potential deals flying thick and fast.

We’re running the rule over four of the latest transfer rumours doing the rounds, with our analysis and predictions below.

JOAO FELIX – BENFICA TO LIVERPOOL

Liverpool have seen a €70 million offer rejected for the breakout Benfica attacking midfielder as they attempt to get in front of a growing chasing pack, according to Correio da Manha.

Why it will happen: The Reds are a hugely attractive proposition for any young player under Jurgen Klopp, plus they’ve shown a real inclination to back their manager in the transfer market. Gone are the days of them being left behind.

Why it won’t happen: Manchester United, Manchester City, Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona are all linked to the 19-year-old, meaning competition is fierce. Benfica are also, apparently, steadfast about his €120m buyout clause needed to be reached.

Verdict: With four goals and one assist in nine Primeira Liga outings, it’s clear to see why Liverpool are so interested in Felix. Benfica will always sell when the price is right. Expect the chase to heat up in the rest of January and beyond, with the Reds well in the mix.

Rating: 6/10

FBL-POR-LIGA-BENFICA-AVES

MARKO ARNAUTOVIC – WEST HAM TO GUANGZHOU EVERGRANDE

West Ham’s resolve to keep their leading marksman has been tested by a €40m offer by Chinese Super League giants Guangzhou, according to The Guardian.

Why it will happen: Arnautovic has been pushing for a lucrative exit to the CSL from the moment champions Shanghai SIPG, reportedly, lodged a bid at the start of the month. His poor behaviour since saw him dropped for this weekend’s meeting with Bournemouth.

Why it won’t happen: A 20-per-cent sell-on clause for any fee more than £20m means the Hammers require big money for a 29-year-old. The Chinese Football Association’s 100-per-cent tax on any transfers more than $7m means Arnautovic should cost about €75m. Eye-watering.

Verdict: After a seven-year hold on the CSL title was ended last season and they allowed Brazil forward Ricardo Goulart to leave on loan, Evergrande are prepared to spend big on Arnautovic. Career-best wages make the deal appealing for the player, while West Ham can reinvest in 22-year-old Celta Vigo striker Maxi Gomez. This move makes sense for all parties.

Rating: 8/10

West Ham United v Arsenal FC - Premier League

KRZYSZTOF PIATEK – GENOA TO AC MILAN

AC Milan believe they have pulled off a coup and secured the prolific Poland striker for €35m plus bonuses and unused Croatia playmaker Alen Halilovic, according to Sky Sport Italia.

Why it will happen: Intense negotiation on Friday in Milan with Genoa have seen the Rossoneri make up for the imminent loss of loanee Gonzalo Higuain – and in some style. Piatek is eager to make the switch, that should be pushed through on Tuesday.

Why it won’t happen: Real Madrid have been regularly linked to Piatek this month. If they come in with a big deal, will the breakout attacker with 13 Serie A goals be prepared to renege on his Milan agreement? The price also seems low, allowing space for bigger bids.

Verdict: Milan have made a real statement of intent. Piatek is only tested for a short time at the highest level, but the signs are of a future superstar. If the Rossoneri believe they can pull it off without further impinging Financial Fair Play rules, then this is a stunning transfer.

Rating: 9/10

Genoa CFC v ACF Fiorentina - Serie A

NICOLO BARELLA – CAGLIARI TO INTER MILAN

Inter have overtaken Napoli and Chelsea in the battle to land Italy centre midfielder Barella from Cagliari, according to Calciomercato.com.

Why it will happen: Barella is a boyhood Inter fan and has, seemingly, given his consent to make this dream come true. At €40m plus €10m in bonuses, the deal is a great one for the Nerazzurri. Cagliari have also teed up a replacement, Boca Juniors and Uruguay’s Nahitan Nandez.

Why it won’t happen: Chelsea have reined in their spending in recent years, but Barella’s age – 21 – and potential makes him exactly the type of buy they now make. The wealth of the Premier League ensures they can go much higher.

Verdict: Everything now points to Barella donning Inter’s famous black and blue kit in the coming days. A move within Serie A makes perfect sense for a player who has just found his place in the Italy XI. Expect to see this transfer pushed over the line this month.

Rating: 8/10

Frosinone Calcio v Cagliari - Serie A

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