Despite now being almost a week old, the January transfer window has not exactly burst into life as yet. However, with everything still up for grabs in the Premier League and a number of clubs having obvious deficiencies, there is likely to be significant activity before the month is out.
Here’s a roundup of the latest talk surrounding three of the Premier League’s leading teams, Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham:
Having been forced to play understudy to Thibaut Courtois this season, rumors continue to link Petr Cech with a move away from Stamford Bridge. The latest speculation comes from the Daily Mirror, which states that Italian side Roma are keen to acquire the experienced stopper in January. However, given the recent departure of third-choice goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer to Leicester City and Jose Mourinho’s insistence that there is “no chance” that Cech would leave this month, it is a deal that looks highly unlikely to come off, at least for the time being.
On the subject of Leicester, there are widespread reports that the Premier League’s bottom club have beaten Chelsea to the signing of 23-year-old Croatian striker Andrej Kramaric. The Blues were in pole position to agree a transfer from Rijeka, but it appears that the offer of a much quicker route to the first team at Leicester has swung Kramaric in another direction. Chelsea may have better luck with a summer move for Micah Richards. The Manchester City defender, currently on loan at Fiorentina, will be out of contract at the end of the season and Chelsea, according to The Guardian, are weighing up signing the 26-year-old former England international on a free transfer. Also with an eye toward the future are fresh rumors that Chelsea could try and mount an ambitious pursuit of Lionel Messi.
Daniel Sturridge is set to make his long-awaited return from injury later this month, but reports continue to link Liverpool with moves to improve their forward options. Seemingly most likely is that Liverpool bring forward Divock Origi’s arrival from Liverpool. Signed by the Reds last summer, the Belgium striker was sent back to Lille on loan for this season, but the Liverpool Echo reported over the weekend that Liverpool were set to pay £3 million to have Origi arrive in the January transfer window. However, Lille director Jean-Michel Vandamme contradicted that story by stating that it would cost Liverpool 6 million euros (£4.7 million) and that “at the moment it is not possible.”
Far costlier would be a rumored move for West Brom’s Sado Berahino. The Independent is among those to report that Liverpool are interested in the young English striker who is said to have been valued by his club at £20 million. While Berahino is believed to be keen on a transfer, it is difficult to envisage Liverpool paying such a large fee for a player with little experience at the top level. Far more experienced at a high echelon is Xherdan Shaqiri. Linked with a move to Anfield last summer, there now appears an increasing likelihood that the Switzerland international will leave Bayern Munich in search of regular first-team action. Liverpool are again reported to be interested, along with Inter Milan and Stoke City.
Despite the goal-scoring form of Harry Kane, Tottenham are said to have joined Liverpool in the hunt for Berahino. Yet, with Spurs chairman Daniel Levy one of soccer’s toughest negotiators, there appears little prospect of him agreeing to meet West Brom’s asking price. With both Emmanuel Adebayor and Roberto Soldado desperately short of form, increasing his firepower is likely to be Mauricio Pochettino’s priority in the January transfer window.
Still, the Daily Mirror has written that Tottenham are eyeing up a cut-price £3 million deal for Aston Villa’s Fabian Delph. The all-action midfielder, who made his England debut earlier this season, is set to be out of contract in the summer. Funds may be be freed up for Pochettino to conduct a shakeup of the squad he inherited last summer, with rumors suggesting that wingers Aaron Lennon and Andros Townsend, as well as defender Younes Kaboul could be on the way out of White Hart Lane.