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Paper Talk: Arsenal plotting to sign £60m Lacazette replacement

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1638690002 mikel arteta arsenal against crystal palace 1

Arsenal have identified the perfect replacement for Alexandre Lacazette but will have to pay upwards of £60million, while AC Milan and Inter are keen on signing a Manchester United defender – both in Friday’s Paper Talk.

LACAZETTE REPLACEMENT LINED UP BY ARSENAL

Arsenal are reportedly plotting a £60m move for Everton and England striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin in the summer after coming to a realisation over Alexandre Lacazette’s future at the club.

Calvert-Lewin was on Mikel Arteta’s radar last summer, but the Toffees were determined not to let their star man leave. However, the 24-year-old has remained on Arsenal’s radar and is considered the perfect Lacazette replacement, as reported in the Daily Mail.

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Arteta is currently formulating plans for life without Lacazette, whose contract expires at the end of the season.

The Gunners boss had previously indicated that the Frenchman could extend his stay. However, the likelihood is that he will earn a big signing-on bonus at another club.

The question remains whether Arsenal could afford to splash out more than £60million to get their man. That is expected to be the starting point for the Goodison club to even begin negotiations.

Calvert-Lewin, who joined from Sheffield United for just £1.5m in 2016, started the season in fine form. He scored three goals in as many games before suffering a quadriceps injury that has kept him out since.

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Everton sliding in Calvert-Lewin absence

Everton have badly missed their talisman and currently sit 14th in the the table, with boss Rafa Benitez coming under pressure.

Calvert-Lewin could return for the festive fixture programme. But whether he gets enough game time before the winter window opens will depend on when Arsenal could make their offer.

At this stage it would appear that next summer is the most likely, especially when it becomes clear where Lacazette will be playing his football in 2022.


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MILAN GIANTS WANT TELLES

Manchester United star Alex Telles is being tracked by both Inter and AC Milan. (The Sun)

Everton may reportedly axe boss Rafa Benitez or director of football Marcel Brands as a power struggle engulfs the club. (The Sun)

Thibaut Courtois could be tempted into making a surprise move to Newcastle. But only if the price is right. (The Sun)

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Reports in Spain claim Isco, a possible transfer target for Arsenal, has refused to warm up while on the subs’ bench during Real Madrid’s last three games. (The Sun)

Chelsea are battling with Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Ajax for the signature of FC Copenhagen wonderkid Roony Bardghji. (The Sun)

Saul Niguez fears he is caught in a trap at Chelsea as his dream loan move turns into a nightmare. (The Sun)

John Barnes reckons Wolves star Adama Traore could be a good buy for Liverpool if he’s willing to sit on the bench. (The Sun)

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LIVERPOOL OPEN TALKS FOR BARCA STARLET

Ronald Araujo raising his hand during a Barcelona match

Liverpool have reportedly opened talks with highly-rated young Barcelona defender Ronald Araujo. (Daily Mail)

Ferran Torres has reportedly moved closer to the Manchester City exit door amid reports in Spain Pep Guardiola has told him he will not stop a move to Barcelona. (Daily Mail)

Gabriel Barbosa remains committed to Flamengo despite being linked with a move to the Premier League in January, according to his agent. (Daily Mail)

Robert Lewandowski has, according to reports in Spain, told his agent to prioritise a summer move to Real Madrid. (Daily Mail)

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Xavi has been given the go-ahead to boost his Barcelona squad in January. (Daily Mail)

Edinson Cavani wants to leave Manchester United and join Barcelona when his contract expires next summer. (The Times)


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MORE TRANSFER GOSSIP

Darwin Nunez Benfica

Arsenal have identified Benfica striker Darwin Nunez as a possible alternative to Fiorentina’s Dusan Vlahovic as hopes of a move for the latter begin to wane. (Daily Express)

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Newcastle are targeting four English stars, including Tottenham midfielder Harry Winks and Manchester United forward Jesse Lingard, as part of their January squad rebuild. (Daily Express)

Barcelona have issued a contract “ultimatum” to Ousmane Dembele, who is free to speak to overseas clubs in January and has been linked with a possible move to Manchester United. (Daily Mirror)

Newcastle United’s new owners are sure they will be able to bring in their targets in January and are yet to find any reluctance from rival clubs to deal with them. (Daily Telegraph)

PSG wonderkid Xavi Simon appears unlikely to join Rangers despite reports in Spain linking him with the Ibrox club. (Scottish Sun)

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EXCLUSIVE: Newcastle turn to Everton man as centre-back options dwindle

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TEAMtalk understands that Everton defender Yerry Mina has emerged as a January transfer target for Newcastle United.

Eddie Howe’s primary defensive targets have so far been Burnley’s James Tarkowski and Lille star Sven Botman, but neither of those deals were possible.

Sevilla’s Diego Carlos has since emerged as the number one target. However, that deal has not yet been agreed and Newcastle are looking at other options instead.

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Now we can reveal that one of those the Magpies are keen on is Colombian ace Mina, although the recent sacking of Rafa Benitez could see the situation complicated.

Newcastle do still have room in their squad for two domestic loans – and Mina could fill one of those berths.

But it remains to be seen whether Everton would be happy to potentially strengthen a rival who are only seven points behind them in the table and still sit in the bottom three.


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Newcastle, West Ham join Szalai chase

Meanwhile, West Ham and Newcastle United have joined the list of clubs keen to sign Fenerbahce defender Attila Szalai in the January transfer window.

The centre-back, who turns 24 on Thursday, has garnered plenty of attention this season with his displays in Turkey. The Hungry international has made 17 starts among 19 top-flight appearances for the Yellow Canaries. And many top clubs have taken note.

Barcelona were linked in November last year but Chelsea seemed at the front of the queue for his signature. A report in early December claimed the Blues had all but sealed a deal for the stopper.

That was because Hungary manager Marco Rossi seemed to confirm that he was off to Stamford Bridge.

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Asked about his squad, the 57-year-old Italian said:  “It’s hard to name just one player, but right now I see very well Attila Szalai, who plays for Fenerbahce, but I think he is joining Chelsea.”

However, just a day later, Fenerbahce issued a rebuttal.

“The allegations regarding the transfer of our player Attila Szalai, which have been made public in the last few days, based on foreign press and social media, do not reflect the truth,” a statement read.

“Our club has not made any transfer negotiations regarding our successful football player Attila Szalai. Our player continues his work completely concentrating on the goals of our team. We present it to the public.”

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Attila Szalai Fenerbahce 2021 TEAMtalk1

That news opened the door for other clubs to get involved and the Hammers have now been linked, per Sky Sports. David Moyes is in the market for a central defender following Angelo Ogbonna’s season-ending injury.

And Szalai ticks all the boxes, as he is also a left-footed defender and is a decade younger than the Italian. But the north-east outfit are also keen.

Szalai to solve Newcastle problems

Newcastle are involved in a relegation fight after winning just one Premier League fixture this term. They have been unable to see out games from winning positions.

And that was the case again at the weekend. They let slip a 1-0 lead, with Joao Pedro bagging late on to earn Watford a point.

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Eddie Howe needs to improve his rearguard if he is to prevent the Magpies revolution hitting the buffers in May. Szalai, capped 23 times by Hungary, would not break the bank.

He is valued in the region of £17m – a price that has also attracted Serie A giants AC Milan.

READ MORE: Record Newcastle deal on as bid for Real Madrid star is ‘accepted’ as Man Utd man rejects loan

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Jurgen Klopp green lights Newcastle deal for Liverpool man as Howe fails in bid for Brighton star

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Newcastle are reportedly in the clear to push through a deal for Liverpool’s Nat Phillips after their efforts to prise a defender away from Brighton were swiftly rejected.

The Magpies are gearing themselves up for a frantic end to the transfer window. With Chris Wood and Kieran Trippier brought in, Eddie Howe wants more quality on board to aide their survival fight.

Ideally, the Newcastle boss would like to strengthen three positions: midfield, centre-half and left-back.

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His efforts to land a prized Germany man to fill his left-back void, however, have on Wednesday taken a signficant backwards step. That comes after a deal for Bayer Leverkusen left-back Mitchel Bakker also fell short.

The hunt to bolster the midfield, however, does look more promising. Indeed, Newcastle are seemingly in the mix to sign an exciting Brazil international.

Perhaps most pressing of all, however, is the need to add a new central defender.

So far, this has proven a month of frustration for Howe, with efforts to sign Diego Carlos, Sven Botman and James Tarkowski all failing to get over the line.

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As such, reports on Wednesday morning claimed Newcastle had submitted an offer to sign Brighton’s Dan Burn. The 6ft 7in centre-half has done well for Graham Potter’s side in recent times. As such, the Magpies reportedly submitted an £8m offer to the Seagulls for the 29-year-old on Wednesday morning.

However, the Daily Mail reports that the bid has been swiftly rejected by Brighton.

As such, the Mail claims it is uncertain whether Howe will look to increase his offer in a bid to twist Brighton’s arm.

Furthermore, Newcastle could have more joy if they were to pursue a move for Phillips.

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The centre-half, 24, has slid down the pecking order this season. Phillips answered the call last season when Liverpool’s campaign threatened to unravel amid a spate of injuries in defence.

Magpies chasing initial loan deal

Rhys Williams and loanee Ozan Kabak played their part, but Phillips became the main man at the back, helping to steer Liverpool towards Champions League qualification.

But the signing of Ibrahima Konate and the return of their injured stars has seen Phillips marginalised this year. He is yet to play a single minute in the Premier League this campaign. As such, talk of a January exit began to swirl.

West Ham are among those keen, but are yet to make their move.

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Now, as per the Liverpool Echo, Newcastle are ‘considering’ a loan move for Phillips before the winter window shuts.

This deal would include an ‘obligation to buy’ in the summer if the Magpies stay up. Liverpool’s asking price for Phillips is still £15m.

Klopp won’t stand in Nat Phillips way

Jurgen Klopp, while he would prefer a cash sale now, is unlikely to stand in Phillips’ way.

The Reds have recalled Williams from Swansea as cover, allowing Phillips to head out the exit door.

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On the Englishman, Klopp said in December: “We cannot keep Nat Phillips forever, that’s clear. We needed him, just to be safe, for that half-year.

“We will see what happens in the window. He was fine doing it because he’s a great guy.

“People love him because of his heading but with his feet he is unbelievable. He’s a late starter, but his development is unbelievable. I would sign him for any club except Liverpool, because we have him.”

READ MORELiverpool make bold approach to take classy Juventus star on a free in summer 2022

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