Liverpool and Chelsea miss out on Upamecano
Bayern Munich announced the capture of Dayot Upamecano from RB Leipzig on Friday afternoon, and the Mirror reports that the transfer has dealt a blow to the transfer plans of Premier League sides Chelsea and Liverpool. Ozan Kabak’s move was originally intended as a loan in order to leave them free to move for Upamecano, but that could be turned into a permanent deal.
Paper Round’s view: Upamecano will almost certainly make a brilliant defender for the next few years for Bayern, and the transfer will weaken the champions’ strongest rivals. For Liverpool, they will now have to weigh up whether or not Kabak’s performances over the next few months are enough to convince them to pay up to sign the Schalke man on a permanent deal.
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Jovic set for Eintracht
Andre Silva has enjoyed an excellent season so far in Germany for Eintracht Frankfurt, but if they receive an offer between 30 and 40 million euros, Spanish newspaper expects the player to move to Atletico as the ultimate replacement for Luis Suarez. Once they sell Silva they will then use the cash to buy Luka Jovic back on a permanent deal from Real Madrid.
Paper Round’s view: Jovic has suffered by never getting a real chance under Zinedine Zidane and they may come to regret that as they look around for an alternative to Karim Benzema this summer. As for Suarez, he has been exceptional this season but he is only a short-term presence for Atletico, so buying Silva soon would give them chance to adjust to life without the Uruguayan.
AC Milan and Juve chase Ziyech
The Daily Mail reports that Hakim Ziyech could be on his way out of Chelsea, despite only arriving last summer for £37 million. The 27-year-old former Ajax player has played just twice under Thomas Tuchel, and that has alerted both Juventus and AC Milan to the possibility he could be available. They will attempt to take him on loan in the summer for a season.
Paper Round’s view: The failure of Frank Lampard could end up being a hugely costly mistake as players need to be shipped out and brought in as the squad is altered to Tuchel’s specifications. Ziyech is an exciting presence on the left wing and it would be a waste if Chelsea do not allow him to gain the kind of form he showed when he played for Ajax.
Honda back on the market
Keisuke Honda signed for Portimonense just last week, but the 34-year-old midfielder has now been released from his contract in Portugal. That means that the former Japanese international is again available on a free transfer, though he has been registered by Botafogo already, so it is unclear if he was registered in Portugal which might prevent him from playing again this season.
Paper Round’s view: Honda is a veteran player who has plenty of experience across the globe now, but he was far from his best in Brazil, and such a short stay in Portugual suggests that he might have realised he can no longer cut it in top-flight football. A move to an easier league, such as MLS or even a return to Australia, might help extend his career for a few more years.