🚨 the Daily Briefing - Arsenal's Jorginho alternatives, Jude Bellingham's asking price, PSG's FURY over Hakim Ziyech, and more [FREE]
Today's FREE edition of the Daily Briefing, featuring Bellingham, Zubimendi, Ziyech, Saint-Maximin, and more!
Good morning guys! Welcome to today’s FREE edition of the Daily Briefing, thanks for reading and hope you enjoy :-)
Today’s top stories:
Arsenal explored alternatives to the Jorginho signing
The mood at Chelsea after all these signings and changes to the squad
Plus Jude Bellingham’s future, PSG’s fury over Hakim Ziyech, and more
Rafael Leao’s lawyer Ted Dimvula tells me: “There are many fake informations on Leao. We are working together to find a satisfactory solution on the new contract. Leao’s priority has not changed: he wants to stay at AC Milan. We therefore firmly deny any desire on the part of Rafael and/or his entourage to lower his release clause in order to facilitate a departure of the player next summer.”
It was never particularly close for AC Milan to sign Allan Saint-Maximin as Newcastle were not keen to let him leave. Let’s see what happens in the summer.
Martin Zubimendi is one of the players Arsenal also considered for their midfield, but Jorginho was a good option and they decided to proceed for him because Mikel Arteta is big fan and wanted Jorginho when the Moises Caicedo deal collapsed. I’m aware Edson Alvarez has also been linked with Arsenal and other clubs, but at the moment it's completely quiet.
Jorginho confirms: “Yes, Arteta was a big influence for my transfer — I know that Mikel tried a few times to get me before and it didn’t happen, of course not because of my wishes.”
📰 Arsenal could raid Chelsea yet again as they keep tabs on Callum Hudson-Odoi during his loan at Bayer Leverkusen (Guardian)
💬 Do Arsenal need another midfielder for the summer? Who would YOU sign for that position?
Paris Saint-Germain have sold Ander Herrera back to his former club Athletic Club on a permanent deal — buy option clause triggered and contract until 2024.
Barcelona director Alemany confirms the situation for Julian Araujo deal: “We didn't arrive on time due to a computer error — the delay was 18 seconds. We'll have to wait and see what FIFA decide.”
Xavi denies rumours on Raphinha to leave Barça in the summer: “We will always support Raphinha — he’s the future of Barcelona. He's a criticized player, but he does a lot and we value Raphinha a lot.”
Some are speculating that the Enzo Fernandez to Chelsea transfer fee will affect the asking price of Jude Bellingham. However, my understanding is that Borussia Dortmund have not formally communicated any price yet for Jude Bellingham. Talks will enter into important stages in the next weeks, it’s still open. For sure, I don’t see BVB accepting less than €120m.
As far as the player’s side, no decision has been made in January, it will take time to know Jude Bellingham’s next step.
📰 Real Madrid are set to make the signing of Jude Bellingham their top priority for the summer (AS)
💬 How much is Jude Bellingham worth now? And where do YOU think he’ll be playing next season?
The Enzo Fernandez negotiations were pretty crazy behind the scenes and nearly collapsed late on on Deadline Day - click here to read more about what really went on and how Chelsea’s board pulled together to strike this incredible deal.
Enzo Fernandez: “I am so grateful to Chelsea and its ownership for doing everything they could to make me a part of this project. I’m happy and excited to join the Pride of London.”
I feel there is a lot of excitement in the Chelsea squad - new stars, big players, chance to improve the performances. Of course this large number of new arrivals means some players will leave in the summer, but they have to fight for their place now and so it’s something normal in football.
Chelsea sent the contracts for Hakim Ziyech signed, but not in time to be registered. They say it's because of technology problems; but PSG are literally furious. It was a loan deal. I have no idea if PSG will go again for Ziyech in the summer... it will depend on lot of factors, it’s impossible to know their summer strategy now.
Chelsea have reached an agreement to sign talented young Southampton striker Jimmy-Jay Morgan to join their academy. The forward, born in 2006, will join for around £3m plus add ons, and has already has his medical with Chelsea, signing a contract valid until 2026. Southampton are disappointed to lose such a top talent.
Thiago Silva confirms talks over new Chelsea contract are advancing: “We are negotiating, it will probably happen in the next days. My plan is to continue at Chelsea and Chelsea want to continue with me. Chelsea need me with the rebuilding of the club — and here I am.”
📰 Chelsea left-back Ben Chilwell will be a target for Manchester City in the summer if Joao Cancelo ends up leaving permanently (Times)
Albert Sambi Lokonga: “It was not easy to leave Arsenal because as you can see they are top of the league, but for me the important thing now was the confidence of Patrick Vieira.”
Andre Ayew has travelled to London in order to negotiate with two Premier League clubs — including Everton. Ayew is available as a free agent and open to new step.
📰 Everton are also considering moving for former Real Madrid star Isco, who is also a free agent at the moment (Times)
Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri on Weston McKennie move: “McKennie wanted to leave the club, he asked to go — we found great solution with Leeds United.”
The buy option in the deal is not mandatory but up to Leeds: €1.2m loan fee, €33m buy option plus add-ons up to €40m package.
Joao Cancelo on why he left Man City: “I’ve not had much game time, which influenced my decision - it's not about Pep. I really wanted new adventure, Bayern is dream club. I took this chance when it came. I knew this big club and I wanted to take this opportunity.”
Official. Axel Tuanzebe has completed a loan move to Stoke City until the end of the season, Manchester United got the documents signed in time for the deal to go through.
Newcastle were never really open to let Allan Saint-Maximin leave so it wasn’t close with AC Milan. I’m aware his agent has spoken about Milan’s interest, but it wasn’t advanced. In the summer we will see, I’d be lying to mention any guaranteed transfer news now for the summer because many things will change for every club in the next few months.
PSG were furious that the Hakim Ziyech loan from Chelsea fell through. The documents were signed but not submitted on time. I don’t know for the moment if PSG will try again for Ziyech in the summer as it’s too early to know for sure what their plans will be in a few months’ time.
💬 Should PSG try again for Hakim Ziyech in the summer?
Nicolo Zaniolo: “There are many fake news about me. I’m here available to help AS Roma — and I’m ready to give my best for the club.”
Zaniolo was never close to Leeds or Everton — Bournemouth had deal in place on Friday but the player rejected the move.
Tottenham have sold 15% of Marcus Edwards’ rights to Sporting Lisbon as part of the Pedro Porro deal.
Isco remains a free agent after the deal collapsed with Union Berlin because the financial conditions of the deal changed after the medical tests, so it was a big shock and the negotiation collapsed.
Turkish clubs are also interested in Isco, so it’s one to watch in the final days.
Of course. Jorginho's signing is a pointer to summer activities. He is a short term signing on an 18 months contract. He provides cover for the starters and should be happy not to play regularly. He would also provide some mentorship to the younger lads and keep them hungry.
This was a very safe signing. I fully expect Arteta to be back for Caicedo in the summer as he is a longer term heir to the midfield role.