United to move for Aarons
Manchester United are ready to sign Norwich City’s right-back Max Aarons in the January transfer window. The Sun reports that while United are keen on an early move for the 20-year-old defender, they may have to wait until the summer. Norwich raised plenty of money last summer after relegation, and may not need to sell until the completion of the current season.
Paper Round’s view: United have alighted on two right-backs with their own problems. Aarons clearly has potential at just 20, and if he is better going forward than Aaron Wan-Bissaka then that will help the balance of the team enormously. The other option is Kieran Trippier, who is banned for another nine weeks. If there are more covid delays then that may be less of a problem.
'Shy' Arsenal in two-team race for Eriksen – Euro Papers
Isco’s Chelsea preference
The Mirror claims that Arsenal target Isco may be something of a Chelsea fan. In the past, the 28-year-old forward has claimed that he wanted to play at Stamford Bridge, but right now the only option for a Premier League move seems to be to link up with Mikel Arteta. However Arsenal could struggle to sign him, given Zinedine Zidane is not keen to sell, and Isco may prefer to stay in La Liga with Sevilla.
Paper Round’s view: Looking at the coronavirus numbers with England suffering much worse compared to Spain, if Isco is only considering a loan move then keeping away from Britain might be the sensible option for now. Also, he has just had his second child with his partner, so moving to an entirely new country may not be what he needs right now.
Fosu-Mensah rejects contract
Timothy Fosu-Mensah has rejected Manchester United’s latest contract offer, according to the Mail. The 22-year-old Dutch defender, who can play at right-back and in central defence, was offered a three-year deal but has not agreed terms. Instead, he may consider a switch to Marseille, Hertha Berlin, and Monaco, as he has just six months left on his current deal.
Paper Round’s view: Fosu-Monsah has never really broken into the first team at United and at 22 he has not yet shown enough to be given a run of games at Old Trafford. Moving abroad would allow him to develop and fulfil his potential, and that could be as one of the best defenders in the game, given the relatively late development of players in that position.
Atletico need a new striker
Spanish paper Marca recounts how Atletico Madrid came to release Diego Costa from his contract. The 32-year-old Brazilian told the club that as his family had returned to Brazil, he needed to go with them, but Atletico insisted on a 20 million euro clause should he join a Champions League club, something which Costa rejected. Eventually a deal was reached as Costa had become a toxic figure at the training ground, and Atletico now need a replacement.
Paper Round’s view: Costa’s performances at Atletico since his return from Chelsea were poor, and he had shown occasional episodes of a lack of professionalism under both Jose Mourinho and then Antonio Conte. That hassle might be worth it when he is scoring regularly, but otherwise it is best to get rid of him and let someone else deal with the problem.