The Hard Tackle looks at some of the latest transfer news surrounding Premier League clubs Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool.
The ongoing Euros has rendered transfer deals to slow down, as many essential players feature for their respective nations, while transfer business could only be concluded after the tournament. However, those who have not been selected into their national squads remain available for a transfer elsewhere.
We had already seen some big moves happening before the Euros began. And while many expect the transfer market to hit its full stride after the tournament, clubs could look to make the deals that may not be deemed high priority instead.
There’s plenty on that front from Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool at the moment. The Gunners are in the market for a squad rebuild and need to raise as much funds as possible selling their unwanted players, including youngsters. Meanwhile, Liverpool and Chelsea have plenty of first-team stars who could be moved, so transfer rumours for such players are doing the rounds.
The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at some of these possible transfers surrounding these big Premier League clubs.
Arsenal youngster Zech Medley set for an exit
Arsenal have seen the stocks of some young players coming through the academy rise to new levels. However, some are deemed unfit at the moment to make the grade to the first team. One such promising player is defender Zech Medley, who, according to The Sun, is close to an exit and set to join Belgian side KV Oostende in the coming days.
After some impressive loan stints last season at Kilmarnock and Gillingham, the 20-year-old academy graduate is set to move permanently to the Belgian side. It is understood that there could have been a possibility of another loan deal, but a permanent move could be deemed beneficial to all parties concerned.
The move to KV Oostende could enable Medley to play regularly in the side and develop his potential for a more considerable transfer elsewhere in the coming seasons. Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta, however, rated Medley highly and remains keen to keep hold of him. But the club may decide to sell him anyway.
Arsenal, though, are keen to insert a buyback clause into the deal to enable the club to purchase Medley back if his development goes according to plan. Medley’s sale could also fetch Arsenal some money to help them pursue other defensive targets such as Ben White.
Chelsea identifies Adama Traore as Achraf Hakimi alternative
Chelsea’s pursuit of Inter Milan star Achraf Hakimi is no secret. The Blues are in the market to shore up the right side of their defence and have identified the Moroccan to be the ideal wing-back for Thomas Tuchel. However, according to AS, Chelsea might be looking at alternatives for Hakimi if a deal couldn’t be stuck with Inter.
The report suggests the alternative might be Wolves star Adama Traore, who in general might not be a wing-back but has shown he is more than capable of playing that role. Hakimi’s price is too high, and despite Chelsea offering Inter a swap deal involving players and cash, the Serie A champions are expected to entertain only cash offers.
Adama Traore is an influential player, and Wolves may seek a significant price for him. With just two years left on his current deal, there is no indication that the Spanish international will sit down with Wolves over a new contract. The Midlands outfit are also cash strapped and might have to sell some of their star names to raise funds for transfer activity.
Meanwhile, Chelsea does not have immediate problems on the right side of the defence, with Reece James and Cesar Azpilicueta playing very well under Tuchel. However, the German views James as a central defender in a back three rather than a full-time wing-back or right-back. Will Traore be a sensible transfer for Chelsea, or will they better pay big money on other targets or even target cheaper alternatives?
Napoli line up loan move for Liverpool defender Kostas Tsimikas
Napoli have been searching for a quality left-back for nearly two seasons now and might have finally stumbled upon the right target. According to Gazzetta dello Sport, the Naples based club could make a move for Liverpool defender Tsimikas on loan. If the player is to impress, then the club might look to make the move permanent in the future as well.
Liverpool paid around £12 million to Olympiacos for Tsimikas last summer, as Jurgen Klopp sought cover for left-back Andy Robertson. However, Tsimikas saw less game time as Robertson played most cup games and started all 38 games in the league. Tsimikas managed only 7 appearances in all competitions.
That said, Napoli are ready to take him out of Anfield on loan. If the Greek left-back impresses, the move could be made permanent, although Liverpool will ask for more money than they paid for the defender. Such a move will also force Liverpool to look for a new left-back.