Saturday transfer rumor roundup: Morata to Arsenal, Pelle to Juve
After Southampton scooped up Charlie Austin from QPR on a shockingly low $6.5 million fee which begs oh-so-many questions, what else could be cooking this active January window?
Let’s start off with a weird one that could get some backing because of the Austin move. The Sun is a wild ride for gossip, but claims that Liverpool could be looking to take Shane Long from Southampton. To take a joke from The Football Ramble, is Liverpool’s only English scout stationed at St. Mary’s and unwilling to travel?
Saints could also sell Graziano Pelle, who won’t be talking new contract until this summer and is wanted by Juventus according to The Daily Echo. Ronald Koeman has said Southampton won’t sell anyone in January, but could Saints be tempted to cash-in given Pelle’s age (30)?
The Reds, however, are also linked with a younger and perhaps more intriguing striker in Athletic Bilbao striker Inaki Williams. The Guardian says Williams is also wanted by ban-facing Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid, with the Telegraph throwing Arsenal in the mix. The price tag looks to be $22 million for the 21-year-old Spaniard with 10 goals across all competitions this season.
Newcastle United and West Ham are looking towards a Leeds United back despite Everton already agreeing a $5 million fee for Sam Byram. The 22-year-old is out-of-contract this summer, and has 130 Championship appearances despite his young age. Byram can also function as a right winger.
Italian outlet Tuttomercado says Arsenal might be ready to splash the cash needed to pry Alvaro Morata from Juventus. Morata is well-liked in Italy and on a two-year loan to Juve from Real Madrid, but the latter’s looming transfer ban could change things. What does Arsenal have to do with this? You’ll have to ask Tuttomercado.