Sports

January transfer window: what are Premier League clubs hoping for?


Arsenal

The loss of Gabriel Jesus for up to three months has intensified Arsenal’s search for reinforcements, with Shakhtar Donetsk’s Mykhaylo Mudryk at the top of Mikel Arteta’s January shopping list. But having failed with their initial bid of £55m, Arsenal know they will have to pay much more to secure the 21-year-old and could turn to Atletico Madrid’s João Félix as an alternative. Ed Aarons

Aston Villa

Unai Emery wants to supplement his attacking options. Ollie Watkins has impressed in patches but Villa want more competition up front. A reunion with wingers Arnaut Danjuma and Nicolas Jackson, both of whom Emery worked with at Villarreal, has been mooted, while Félix has been offered to numerous Premier League clubs on loan. Villa would be open to offloading Frédéric Guilbert, Morgan Sanson and Marvelous Nakamba, all of whom appear surplus to requirements. Ben Fisher

Arnaut Danjuma
The Villarreal striker Arnaut Danjuma (right) could be a target for Unai Emery. Photograph: Domenech Castello/EPA

Bournemouth

Bournemouth mean business. Bill Foley, their new 78-year-old American billionaire owner, plans to back Gary O’Neil with at least four new faces in their fight for survival. Foley has acknowledged his aggressive approach might upset others. “I’m not here to make friends,” he said. Bournemouth have dipped into the Championship in the past to pluck talents, including now captain Lloyd Kelly (from Bristol City) and winger Marcus Tavernier (from Middlesbrough), arguably their best performer this season. BF

Brentford

The uncertainty over Ivan Toney’s short-term future, with 262 alleged betting breaches hanging over him, could see Brentford enter the market for a striker out of fear their top scorer will be banned. Brentford are loath to spend heavily in January; in the last winter window they signed Christian Eriksen on a free and Jonas Lössl on loan. They were willing to break their transfer record in the summer to sign Mudryk for £30m but he seems out of reach now. Will Unwin

Brighton

Roberto De Zerbi’s first transfer window on the south coast may not be as busy as the Italian might hope but Brighton will be eager to show their support after he took over from Graham Potter in September. The Ukraine defender Mykola Matviyenko from De Zerbi’s former club Shakhtar is among those to have been linked, while he will also be desperate to hang on to Alexis Mac Allister – who signed a new contract until 2025 with an option to extend it by a year before the World Cup – after his performances for Argentina in Qatar. EA

Roberto De Zerbi
It will be Roberto De Zerbi’s first transfer window at Brighton. Photograph: Glyn Kirk/AFP/Getty Images

Chelsea

After splashing out a record £272m in the summer, Chelsea’s spending spree under their new owners looks set to continue into January. The Ivory Coast forward David Datro Fofana is already on his way from Molde with Benoît Badiashile likely to join him from Monaco, although the expected arrival of Josko Gvardiol may not be so straightforward after Real Madrid entered the race for the Croatian. Chelsea are also reported to have opened talks with Benfica over a move for the Argentina midfielder Enzo Fernández, who has a £105m release clause. EA

Crystal Palace

Co-chairman Steve Parish’s admission that Palace are targeting “probably more loans than buys” will not be music to the ears of Patrick Vieira or supporters. The manager’s concerns over a lack of depth in midfield – not to mention Wilfried Zaha entering the last six months of his contract – could lead to a frenzied final few days at the end of the month at a club that has signed a new striker in every January transfer window since 2018. EA

Everton

Another relegation battle looms at Goodison Park and the outcome may rest on the club’s success, or otherwise, in landing the forward options Frank Lampard desperately needs. His job could depend on it too. Mohammed Kudus has been a target since the summer but Ajax would not sell then and his stock has since risen. Quality and quantity is vital, with summer recruits Neal Maupay and Dwight McNeil never likely to fill the Richarlison void. Andy Hunter

Fulham

Thanks to a fine start to the season, there is no need to panic at Craven Cottage. Sitting comfortably in mid-table, they can plot some longer term signings to strengthen Marco Silva’s squad. Right-back is one area of concern which the club would like to address, while another central midfielder is on the wishlist and they will be optimistic they can bring in suitable candidates. WU

Leeds United

Money is believed to be tight at Elland Road and, in any case, Victor Orta, the director of football, never seems keen on trading in January. Jesse Marsch does though have a pressing need for a left-back where Pascal Struijk has been filling in out of position while Junior Firpo has struggled for form and fitness. Philadelphia Union’s 25-year-old German full-back Kai Wagner has been under serious consideration for some time and could be a decent acquisition. Salzburg’s Austria international Maximilian Wöber, recently converted to the left from centre-half, is another possibility. With Patrick Bamford struggling to return to optimal fitness another central striker would also be useful. Southampton’s Scotland forward Che Adams ranks among the potential options. Louise Taylor

Philadelphia Union defender Kai Wagner
Leeds have been considering Philadelphia Union defender Kai Wagner (right) for some time. Photograph: Marcio José Sánchez/AP

Leicester City

Brendan Rodgers has not made a permanent signing in January since taking charge of Leicester in 2019 but the Northern Irishman is confident that is about to change. Leicester’s owners are willing to fund the arrival of a winger, left-back and centre-back in the window. Rodgers is targeting more stature and physicality, with power and speed at the forefront of his thinking. They could revive a move for the former Chelsea winger Jérémie Boga and the former Leicester loanee Michael Keane has also been linked. BF

Liverpool

Jürgen Klopp has already revealed his hand with the signing of Netherlands’ World Cup star Cody Gakpo for an initial £35m from PSV Eindhoven. Liverpool had eyed a move for the forward next summer but with rivals circling, plus Luis Díaz and Diogo Jota out until March, plans were brought forward. There remains time to add a midfield reinforcement although top target Jude Bellingham is unlikely to be available until the summer. AH

Manchester United

Erik ten Hag desperately requires a prolific goalscorer but severely limited funds meant he missed out on Gakpo. Instead a cut-price loan deal is the most likely so with a close-to-no-chance of a revival of the summer interest in Bologna’s Marko Arnautovic, might a move be made, say, for Bayern Munich’s Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting who is out of contract in the summer? Jamie Jackson

Manchester City

Pep Guardiola has all but ruled out any business but he did the same regarding signing a new contract during the World Cup (when this writer asked him) so never say never, especially after Manuel Akanji was a surprise buy in the summer window. The manager is reportedly a fan of Josko Gvardiol yet purchasing the €90m-valued Leipzig defender would seem more likely in the close season. JJ

Newcastle United

Eddie Howe says it would take “serious money” to improve the quality of his first XI and that financial fair play restrictions dictate such funds may not be available this January. Assuming Newcastle have a little more room for manoeuvre than the manager claims, his top targets are a wide forward with Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Marcus Thuram high on a wishlist also including Leeds’s Jack Harrison. In an ideal world Howe would also augment his midfield with Leicester’s James Maddison but, for assorted reasons, that deal may need to wait for the summer. He also covets Benfica’s Argentina midfielder Fernández but fears the transfer fee would be of skyscraper proportions. Perhaps more realistically, West Ham’s Harrison Ashby could be signed as cover for Kieran Trippier at right-back. LT

Marcus Thuram (left)
Marcus Thuram (left) is high on Eddie Howe’s wishlist. Photograph: Hasan Bratic/Defodi Images/Shutterstock

Nottingham Forest

Things will be a lot calmer at the City Ground in January compared to their summer of signing 23 players. Key positions are earmarked for reinforcements down the spine of the team: central defence, central midfield and a forward. As previously proven, the Forest owners are not afraid of paying up for players, so additions are a guarantee. WU

Southampton

It is less than six months but it feels like a lifetime since Southampton were trying for Gakpo and Gonçalo Ramos. Those ships have of course sailed. Southampton’s failure to sign a striker in the summer has left them at risk of relegationbut the Saints need to improve at both ends. Previously they have been happy to nurture strikers brought up from the Championship, including Che Adams and Adam Armstrong, but regardless Nathan Jones’s team are short of firepower. BF

Tottenham

Antonio Conte is never one to rest on his laurels and Tottenham’s shaky form means the Italian is on the hunt for new faces once again. Having enjoyed success in the form of last year’s mid-season arrivals Dejan Kulusevski and Rodrigo Bentancur, Conte is reported to have set his sights on Sporting Lisbon defender Pedro Porro, France midfielder Adrien Rabiot and Morocco’s midfield destroyer Sofyan Amrabat. EA

West Ham

There was heavy investment in the summer so David Moyes could accept those signings need time to settle and could peak in the second half of the campaign. Twenty-year-old defender Luizão has already been acquired from São Paulo but he will start life in the club’s under-21 team. A senior centre-back would be a target if Craig Dawson leaves. WU

Wolves

Wolves recognise this window can help them play catchup and Julen Lopetegui has been promised funds to revamp a flailing squad that has spent almost the entire season in the relegation zone. The Brazilian forward Matheus Cunha is expected to be the first of at least four new faces through the door. Wolves are also targeting a right-back, centre-back and possibly another striker in addition to Cunha. It remains to be seen if the club renews its interest in the West Ham defender Craig Dawson. BF



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