THE January transfer window is OPEN and deals are being made!
And there are reports that Robert Lewandowski could be open to a Premier League move this summer.
The Polish superstar is said to be ‘dreaming of Spain and the Premier League’ after almost a decade at Bayern Munich.
Meanwhile Man City are ready to offer their record goalscorer Sergio Aguero an ambassadorial role with the club, SunSport can exclusively reveal.
The Argentine forward was forced to hang up his boots last month at the age of just 33 due to a previously undetected heart condition.
Thomas Tuchel’s men have been hampered by injuries and Covid cases, but have been boosted by the news that Thiago Silva has signed a new deal.
Erling Haaland is a summer target for Real Madrid, who are confident they can land both him and Kylian Mbappe.
When does the 2022 January transfer window close?
The transfer window opened on January 1, and closes on the 31st at 11pm.
Clubs will be able to sign and sell players during that time, with the Premier League’s winter break due to take place while the final week of the window is going on.
Get all the latest transfer news, gossip and updates here…
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Chelsea ease past listless Tottenham
Chelsea comfortably beat Tottenham 2-0 in the first-leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.
Hakim Ziyech was a constant thorn in Spurs’ side while Marcos Alonso just seemed to annoy his manager from the first minute to the last.
There were barely five minutes on the clock when Marcos Alonso intercepted a sloppy Japhet Tanganga pass midway inside Spurs’ half and slipped Kai Havertz in down the left channel for the German to finish via a deflection of Davinson Sanchez.
And if the first goal was unlucky, Chelsea’s second was simply comical as Tanganga headed Hakim Ziyech’s free-kick into Ben Davies and it cannoned into the bottom right corner.
The second-half was slightly more even as both teams made changes.
Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner both missed big chances while the West Londoners limited Spurs to very little. It could have been more but the Blues thoroughly deserved the win.
Chelsea 2-0 Tottenham
Chelsea still lead Spurs 2-0 in the first leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final at Stamford Bridge.
But a goal for the visitors could change a great deal as they look to give themselves the best possible chance in the return fixture at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Can Antonio Conte’s men conjure something up in the final 10 minutes?
Barcelona avoid cup scare
Barcelona’s season almost went from bad to worse as Xavi’s side survived a Copa del Rey scare to win 2-1 against minnows Linares Deportivo.
The Spanish THIRD-tier side, based in Andalusia, took a shock lead at their tiny 10,000-seater stadium and were 1-0 ahead until past the hour mark.
Linares Deportivo were only founded in 2009, as a replacement for the now defunct CD Linares, and spent most of the evening dreaming of a giant-killing.
Barcelona eventually clicked into gear though, and ended up winning the last-32 tie 2-1.
Tuanzebe set for Napoli loan
Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe is set to sign for Napoli on loan until the end of the season.
Journalist Fabrizio Romano has said: “Deal signed and sealed right now for Axel Tuanzebe.
“Paperworks signed between Manchester United and Napoli. Straight loan until June for €600k loan fee plus €600k bonuses.
“Medical expected to take place on Friday in Italy. Here we go confirmed.”
Lineker not happy with Spurs
It’s 2-0 to Chelsea at the break as Tottenham face a mountain to climb already in their two-legged semi-final.
Can they recover to keep alive the possibility of a North London derby final? Providing Arsenal also come through Liverpool…
Chelsea 2-0 Tottenham
Kai Havertz gave Chelsea the lead over Tottenham with a deflected effort off of Davinson Sanchez.
And now a defensive calamity has led to Ben Davies inadvertently turning home an own goal.
Nightmare for Spurs.
Smalling agrees to be vaccinated
Chris Smalling finally agreed to get a Covid-19 jab after the Italian government clamped down on Serie A anti-vaxxers.
A new rule making it mandatory for all footballers in the top-flight to have at least one coronavirus vaccination comes into force on Thursday.
Around ten players across the league, including Roma defender Smalling, had previously refused any dose of the vaccine.
But the former Manchester United ace, 32, agreed to get jabbed before Jose Mourinho’s side travelled to AC Milan so he can continue to play.
According to Football Italia, Smalling was just one of around ten players in Serie A not to have had the jab.
Newcastle eyeing up Everton’s Digne
Newcastle are closing in on the signing of Everton star Lucas Digne, according to reports.
Digne, 28, has made 15 appearances for the Toffees this season and could be available for around £25million.
Chelsea have been linked with a move for the Frenchman and reportedly stepped up their pursuit amid injuries to Ben Chilwell and Reece James.
But it seems Newcastle will beat The Blues to Digne’s signature, according to journalist Carlos Reynoso.
Kante and Silva positive for Covid
Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has confirmed N’Golo Kante and Thiago Silva will miss tonight’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg after testing positive for Covid-19.
Tuchel will be without the two senior players for Tottenham’s visit to Stamford Bridge.
The pair returned positive tests this morning and will now undergo a period of self isolation.
It means they are likely to miss the FA Cup clash against Chesterfield at the weekend, and the League Cup second leg at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium a week today.
Chelsea vs Tottenham
The teams for tonight’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg between Chelsea and Tottenham.
Chelsea: Arrizabalaga, Rudiger, Sarr, Azpilicueta, Ziyech, Jorginho, Saul, Alonso, Mount, Lukaku, Havertz.
Tottenham: Lloris, Emerson, Tanganga, Sanchez, Davies, Doherty, Hojbjerg, Skipp, Lucas, Son, Kane.
Rangnick turns to psychologist Lense
Ralf Rangnick will lean heavily on club sports psychologist Sascha Lense when Manchester United return to training today to get some much-needed confidence back in the team.
As soon as the new Red Devils boss was appointed he brought the highly rated Lense onto his staff to get into the players’ ‘hearts, brains and blood’.
Lense is the first person to have such a role at the club in 20 years.
Now Rangnick will be hoping his work can pay off in the days before United take on Aston Villa at Old Trafford in the FA Cup.
De Gea tops keeper charts
Manchester United star David De Gea is the best performing goalkeeper in Europe’s top five leagues this season – in one department at least.
De Gea, 31, has outperformed his Premier League rivals in terms of saving expected goals this season. Incredibly, he has saved 7.5 shots that were expected to hit the back of the net.
That has won United countless points – his five saves against Norwich a prime example of how crucial he is to the Red Devils.
Wolves keeper Jose Sa is next on the list with 6.6 expected goals saved, and Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris closes out the top three with 1.6.
By comparison, other top keepers in the Premier League fall some way short of De Gea.
Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsdale has won several plaudits for his displays this season but he has stopped just 0.4 expected goals this term, which suggests he has not overperformed like De Gea.
Dortmund give deadline to Haaland
Borussia Dortmund will make one last bid to persuade Erling Haaland to extend his stay with them beyond the summer.
And the German club say they want D-day over Haaland’s future to come in the next few weeks rather than dragging on indefinitely.
Manchester United, Man City and Chelsea are ready to pounce for the Norwegian hitman who has a £64 million release clause this summer. There is also likely be interest from Real Madrid while Barcelona say they could move despite their recent cash woes.
But Dortmund say they will sit down for talks with Haaland his agent Mino Raiola to try to convince him to stick around.
Director Sebastian Kehl said: “We will sit down with Erling and his team over the next few weeks and discuss the situation. It would be good if the situation does not drag on forever.
“He is in very good hands at Dortmund and we as a club can continue to be a good option for him.”
More from Ince – talks Rangnick
Paul Ince has questioned Ralf Rangnick’s preparations ahead of Manchester United’s defeat to Wolves on Monday night.
The 54-year-old said: “I think he’s [Rangnick] had enough time [to prepare the team] – they’ve not played for three weeks.
“I know Carrington’s been shut for six days, but he’s had 12 days of training, he must know what personnel he’s gonna play, and how they’re gonna play – he must do.
“As Jamie [Redknapp] says, Pep [Guardiola] does, [Jurgen] Klopp does – we just look like we’re at sixes and sevens at Man Utd.
“Everybody looks lost! Everyone’s turning round to say ‘what’re we doing? we’re unsure about this. Is this the right way to go?’”
Ince backs Poch for Man Utd
Mauricio Pochettino should be Manchester United’s next manager, says club legend Paul Ince.
The 54-year-old said: “I thought Pochettino was the man, I’ve always clamoured for him to be the man. He still might be the man if PSG don’t win the Champions League.
“But whoever the man is has to have a four-year project. This team needs investment.
“The recruitment has been poor over so many, many years. It needs the right man, with the right philosophy and the right project to take this club forward.
“You can’t, as Jamie said, have a manager in the next season and if things aren’t going well after five months – we start booing him – it ain’t gonna work.”
Prem clubs eye Philippe Coutinho
Barcelona outcast Philippe Coutinho isn’t short of Premier League suitors, with FIVE Prem clubs reportedly keen on a January move for the playmaker.
One of those is Aston Villa, as boss Steven Gerrard eyes a reunion with his former Liverpool team-mate.
Another is Everton, with owner Farhad Moshiri keen to sign the former Liverpool star, who spent five years on the other side of Stanley Park.
Elsewhere Arsenal have also been heavily linked with a move for the 63-cap Brazil man.
Tottenham too are rumoured to be interested, as Antonio Conte looks to stamp his mark on Spurs’ squad.
Finally Newcastle have been touted as a potential destination, with the Magpies set to announce Kieran Trippier as their first signing under the new Saudi era.
Man Utd eye Dortmund’s Zagadou
Manchester United have reportedly opened talks over a free transfer for Dan-Axel Zagadou.
The Borussia Dortmund defender, 22, is in the final six months of his contract.
And Fussball Transfers claims Ralf Rangnick is eager to snap up Zagadou for nothing when his deal expires this summer.
United targeted a move for the France U21 star last year during Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reign.
And Zagadou was also wanted by Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta before he moved for Brighton’s Ben White.
Zagadou has played 13 times for Dortmund this season after recovering from a lengthy knee injury.
Arsenal, Newcastle and Everton have been embroiled in a transfer war over Lyon star Bruno Guimaraes.
That is according to the Evening Standard, who report that the Gunners have been following Guimaraes’s progress for a few years now.
In fact, the north Londoners scouted the midfielder when he was playing at his previous club in Brazil Athletico Paranaense.
The Brazil international won’t come cheap, however, and sources in France believe he could cost at least £40million
Philippe Coutinho appears to be on his way back to the Premier League four years after departing Liverpool for Barcelona.
That is according to Sky Sports, who claim that he could join a Prem club as early as this weekend.
There are five English top-flight teams who are keeping tabs on the playmaker.
The Brazil international has been previously linked with a move to Aston Villa, Newcastle and Arsenal
We reported earlier that Philippe Coutinho is on his way out of Barcelona and a return to the Premier League is very likely.
According to Fabrizio Romano, Aston Villa have joined the bidding war for Coutinho.
Villa are in “direct contact” with the playmaker’s representative to discuss a potential loan move this month.
The Brazil international has also been previously linked with Arsenal as well as Newcastle
Manchester United have prioritised Wolves star Ruben Neves as well as Marseille ace Boubacar Kamara in their search for a new midfielder.
That is according to Sky Sports, who report that Kamara and Neves are United’s main targets in the ongoing January transfer window.
The Red Devils have been keeping tabs on Neves since last summer and are still in contact with his agent Jorge Mendes.
Newcastle and Roma are also interested in Kamara, who is able to discuss terms of a pre-contract agreement with other clubs outside of France
Barcelona ace Philippe Coutinho appears to be on his way out of the Nou Camp this month.
That is according to Sport, who claim that Coutinho has told Barca that he is now willing to leave during the January transfer window.
The playmaker held talks with the Blaugrana during the holidays and accepts that he need to leave.
The report adds that the Brazil international is ‘clear’ in his belief that he can become a Premier League star again.
The ex-Liverpool star has been previously linked with a move to Arsenal and Newcastle
Newcastle are keeping tabs on four Arsenal aces amid the January transfer window, according to Football London.
Among them is out-of-favour star Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who has been frozen out of the Gunners squad and stripped of the captain’s armband after another disciplinary matter.
The Magpies are also keeping tabs on Eddie Nketiah, Rob Holding and Mohamed Elneny this month.
The Toon have started strong as they are set to welcome Kieran Trippier from Atletico Madrid
More from Vlahovic
Fiorentina are reportedly keen on Arsenal’s proposal for a player-plus-cash swap, involving Lucas Torreira, for Dusan Vlahovic.
Vlahovic recently signalled his intention to remain at the Viola until June as he looks to help Vincenzo Italiano’s side qualify for Europe next term.
Though the centre-forward insisted that things can change quickly, as he told Politika: “I have stated this several times so far. A beautiful football story is being made here in Florence.
“We have a good team, great football players, great support from the fans. It all deserves respect.
“Only God knows what will happen in the next period. My wish is to bring Fiorentina to Europe, because we have not been in Europe for a long time.
“I don’t know what can happen overnight. We’ll see”
As reported earlier, Arsenal and Liverpool’s Carabao Cup semi-final match has been postponed.
The Reds requested to move the date following a coronavirus outbreak within their camp.
But the Merseysiders have now forfeited their home advantage in the second leg, which means the first meeting will be at Anfield on January 13.
The second leg will take place on January 20 at the Emirates