Football transfer rumours: Maitland-Niles to West Brom? Gordon to Liverpool?

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We begin down at the Emirates, where Ainsley Maitland-Niles has been kicking up a fuss about being placed into cold storage by Mikel Arteta. Word of the utility player’s restlessness has reached Sam Allardyce, who is desperately scrambling around for a bit of quality as he tries to rescue West Brom – and his own shiny never-been-relegated reputation – from slipping into the void. Arsenal are not against letting the 23-year-old leave on loan but they are concerned that half a season under Allardyce could send his football development spiralling and would be happier if “an unnamed current top four team” took him. If true, it’s the kind of elitist kick in the teeth that Allardyce will digest about as well as a vegetarian bhuna.

Galatasaray have no such worries about their players being readied for a relegation dogfight at the school of Allardyce and towering Senegal striker Mbaye Diagne has already completed a medical ahead of a loan move to the Hawthorns. Next up on Diagne’s list of things to do will be to watch that Ultimate Target Man video that Allardyce has presumably sent him, featuring 10 hours of Kevin Davies’ best hold-up play.

Injuries to Fabinho and Joël Matip have left Liverpool in even more dire need of a centre-back who isn’t a midfielder or a school-age teenager. So they’re going to sign … a 16-year-old midfielder, of course. Kaide Gordon, who made his debut for Derby against Birmingham in December, has not accepted a deal to stay at the Championship club and is expected to sign a scholarship contract at Anfield. As for that defender that Jürgen Klopp so desperately needs, here’s what Liverpool’s manager had to say after the 3-1 win at Spurs: “If you have a centre-half available at a reasonable price, and one with the quality we need, then send me a message.” Klopp has already said thanks but no thanks to the chance to sign Sokratis Papastathopoulos on a free.

One centre-back who might be making a move to a club in the north-west of England is Nathan Collins. Stoke City would be prepared to let the 19-year-old leave for £15m and Burnley’s new owners might be willing to splash the cash. Arsenal are also interested in the Republic of Ireland Under-21 international.

Edin Dzeko has fallen out of favour at Roma and the words is that he has been offered to both Manchester City and Manchester United. Now, it’s well-known that United love an ageing striker but that position has already been filled by Edinson Cavani and can anyone really see Pep Guardiola jumping at the chance to sign 34-year-old Dzeko? One for Allardyce to look at?

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Sergio Romero has had enough of being the Carlo Cudicini de jour at Manchester United and may try to force a move to Crystal Palace before the window shuts. Romero has not trained with United this year and is training alone in Buenos Aires in an attempt to keep fit so he has a chance of making the Argentina squad before the Copa América. Another player on his way out of Old Trafford is Jesse Lingard. United have agreed loan terms with West Ham and the 28-year-old is set for a reunion with the rejuvenated David Moyes.

And it says here that Germany will hand Bayern Munich’s Jamal Musiala, 17, a call-up to stop him playing for England. Musiala lived in Stuttgart till he was seven and then moved to Croydon so is eligible to play for either national team. He’s represented England at Under-21 level. Over to you Gareth Southgate.

Aaron Long loan, Kylian Mbappe approach, Shkodran Mustafi claim

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So says Ian Doyle in his Verdict. He writes:

The ecstatic scream that went up from the Liverpool players at the sound of the final whistle could probably be heard all the way back to Merseyside.

And the message Jurgen Klopp’s side had sent out to the rest of the Premier League during the previous 90 minutes was just as blaring.

Rumours of the Reds’ demise have been greatly exaggerated.

Having seen their obituary penned in some quarters after a dismal start to the calendar year, Liverpool responded with their best performance of the season to send a reminder they will still have a major say in matters at the top of the Premier League.

How it was needed after more than four league games without a goal, their proud unbeaten home run having been ended and smarting from an FA Cup exit to bitter North West rivals Manchester United.

Nobody, though, should have doubted their mentality and sheer strength of character that allowed Liverpool to shake off the recurring nightmares of dodgy VAR calls and centre-back injuries to secure a first league win since thrashing Crystal Palace 7-0 on December 19.

Rejuvenating title talk may be pushing it a bit, Manchester City clearly the favourites going into the second half of the campaign.

But Liverpool once again underlined they reserve their best for their nearest rivals, moving back into the top four and now just three points behind second-placed United after capitalising on favourable results the previous day.

This was a brave display, willing to take the game to a Tottenham side who live for the counter-attack while backing their ability to keep possession and poke holes in an admittedly under-strength home rearguard.

Not only were there huge performances throughout the team, they came from players desperately in need of an injection of self-belief.

Liverpool transfer news round-up: Upamecano bid touted as Reds face Everton battle for teenager

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Liverpool transfer news is coming thick and fast despite the Reds having a quiet January window.

The Reds are unlikely to make a move for a new centre-back despite having Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez out through injuries.

Before the window began, the Premier League champions were expected to bring in a new defender in order to plug the gap.

However, club officials opted against moving for a new defender, and insisted on maintaining their transfer policy of scouting their targets and ensuring they are right for the club’s system.

The Reds are instead set to use the rest of the current transfer window to plan for the summer.

Here are today’s Liverpool transfer rumours.

(Image: POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Liverpool backed to sign Dayot Upamecano

Liverpool have been linked with RB Leipzig star Dayot Upamecano in the past, and it seems they could reignite their interest in the defender.

The Reds are likely to sign a centre-back in the summer, though Rory Smith of the New York Times claims a bid is possible in the upcoming summer window.

He said to The Guardian : “I think Liverpool intend to sign a centre-back in the summer and I think that central defender is probably someone they will play against in the Champions League’s Last 16. And I don’t think it’s going to be Dayot Upamecano.

“The club’s principal and policy is ‘If we can’t get the exact player we want then we are not going to sign anybody’ – and that has worked for them brilliantly. I don’t think it’s to do with money not being available to Klopp.”

(Image: Getty Images)

Klopp explains criteria for transfer targets

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has opened up on what he and his scouting department look for in a transfer target.

Speaking to the Robbie Fowler podcast, he explained that what a player is like off the pitch is just as important as their ability on it.

“Open. Open for information. What I like is a very, very confident football player and person who doesn’t take himself too seriously,” he said when asked what he looks for in a player.

“Very self-confident so you know I’m good, but I understand I need all the others as well otherwise I have no chance in this game. So a little bit like that.

“But if that’s your only strength, you have no chance in my team. First and foremost you should be able to play really good football.”

Reds face Everton battle for teenager

Liverpool are set to battle it out with Everton for the signing of teenager Kyron Gordon, reports the Daily Mail.

Gordon signed a two-year professional contract with Sheffield United in 2019, which only became active once he finished his scholarship last summer.

The centre-back has been on the fringes of Chris Wilder’s squad this season, and was left on the bench earlier this month when the Blades took on Bristol Rovers.

Liverpool are apparently watching him with a view to making a bid in the future, though it seems unlikely they will test the waters this month.