Rangers have been told they could make a “massive profit” if they decided to cash in on “standout” attacker Joe Aribo.
Former Ibrox favourite Alan Hutton, speaking to Football Insider, claims that the reigning Scottish Premiership champions will part company with the 25-year-old “if the fee is big enough”.
Several Premier League clubs have been linked with the former Charlton man. They include Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa and Southampton.
Indeed, the latter are believed to have sent scouts to watch Nigerian Aribo on a number of occasions.
The attacking midfielder is heading into the final 18 months of his Ibrox contract. That leaves Rangers in a difficult situation, if the player decides against extending his stay.
Aribo joined Rangers in 2019 after his Charlton contract expired. He has scored 23 goals in 122 appearances for the Ibrox club.
And Hutton has hinted that a healthy bid could tempt his old club into selling.
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Aribo a sellable Rangers asset
“It will depend on the fee,” he told Football Insider.
“Rangers got him for a minimal outlay when he came cross-border, so there’ll obviously be a massive profit involved.
“I think when you’re playing at the level he is, playing internationally and on the European stage – there’s always going to be teams looking at you.
“He’s been the standout, especially since Van Bronckhorst has come in. He’s really freed him up in that midfield, and Aribo has responded by taking his game to a new level.
“Gerrard spoke about it a lot when he was in charge. Rangers don’t need to sell, but if the fee is big enough then they will have to take it.”
Aribo has scored six and assisted four in 31 outings so far this term.
However, he looks set to be away for most of January when he will be in action for Nigeria at the African Cup of Nations.
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Chelsea risk complete depletion after transfer update for tempted star Tuchel is relying on
Marcos Alonso remains a top target for Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone, despite it being questionable as to whether Chelsea would sanction a transfer.
Chelsea are currently facing a shortage of players in the full-back positions. Alonso is their only natural fit on the left-hand side at present due to Ben Chilwell’s ACL injury. They have been trying to recall Emerson Palmieri from a loan spell at Lyon, but are struggling.
Therefore, the Blues continue to be linked with signing new left-backs in January. But now a further complication has arisen in the shape of Atletico chasing Alonso.
According to Marca, Simeone still dreams of signing the Spaniard, whom he wanted at Atletico three years ago. Back then, the La Liga giants opted to sign Renan Lodi instead.
Now, Simeone is hoping to lure Alonso back to his hometown. The Atletico boss still feels a need to strengthen at left-back and Alonso has the traits he desires.
Marca (whose report is adapted by Sport Witness) claim a transfer is back on the agenda, then. Although whether that would appeal to Chelsea is debatable.
Alonso lost his place as a starter after Chilwell relied, but they are relying on him now until they can recover the Englishman’s services or sign another reinforcement.
But the 31-year-old may be keen to make the move to Madrid. According to Marca, he would welcome the chance to play in La Liga.
Alonso came through the academy ranks at Real Madrid before making one La Liga appearance in 2010. He has never played in the competition since after spending his club career between England and Italy.
Spanish return appealing to Alonso?
Recent reports claimed he was keen to explore a future away from Chelsea to boost his chances of representing Spain at the 2022 World Cup. Alonso has five international caps to his name after debuting in 2018, including two last year.
He may now have hopes of playing club football in his homeland, rather than just representing their national team. And Atletico see him as a perfect fit.
It is not yet clear if they will make a formal move, or how much they may offer. But if anything happens between now and the end of the month, it would heighten Chelsea’s dilemmas.
Atletico have Marcos Alonso alternatives
However, in an update that may allay any fears Chelsea have of losing Alonso, AS claim Atletico are also looking at Reinildo of Lille.
As cited by Football Espana, the report claims there have been discussions between the Spanish and French champions over his transfer.
Reinildo is out of contract with Lille in the summer. So he could be available for a cut-price fee.
AS also list the versatile Daniel Wass of Valencia as a priority option for Atletico.
However, the Mattress Makers are also long-term admirers of Alonso, as Marca remind. Therefore, his future at Chelsea will still be in question unless Atleti sign one of the other options.
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Ranieri sack moments away with ‘stunned’ Watford chiefs ‘preparing’ new appointment
Watford are poised to sack manager Claudio Ranieri and have already begun sizing up replacements after being left stunned by their ineptitude versus Norwich, per reports.
The Hornets suffered a humbling 3-0 defeat to relegation rivals on Friday night. The contest had been hyped up as a potential relegation decider given how few points both teams have accrued against stronger opposition.
But despite home advantage, Watford looked off the pace throughout, and manager Ranieri could soon pay the price.
Watford are not known for exhibiting patience when it comes to their hirings and firings. Indeed, Xisco Munoz was relieved of his duties less than two months into the season.
Now, according to the Telegraph, Ranieri is poised to follow suit after lasting just three months.
The newspaper state Watford are ‘ready to end’ Ranieri’s reign following their dismal Norwich defeat. The Italian is ‘close’ to being fired, and both staff and players are ‘preparing’ for the appointment of a new head coach.
Watford are deemed to be ‘already targeting replacements’, though the article does not speculate as to their identities.
Ranieri sack due ‘this weekend’
With Watford’s players not due in for training until Tuesday, the article concludes Ranieri is likely to be sacked ‘this weekend’.
The Hornets have lost seven out of their last eight league matches. Their only non-defeat was a 1-1 draw with Newcastle last weekend.
TEAMtalk’s own sources have echoed the sentiments of the Telegraph report.
We have been told by more than one reliable source that Ranieri’s time is up. A final decision could come as early as tonight.
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