Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang continues to be linked with a move from Arsenal and Paris Saint-Germain are the latest European heavyweight reportedly interested in the forward.

Aubameyang, 30, is reportedly a target for Barcelona after scoring 16 goals in 26 games for struggling Arsenal this season.

However, with Edinson Cavani potentially leaving, PSG are also eyeing the Gabon international.

 

TOP STORY – PSG INTERESTED IN AUBAMEYANG AMID BARCELONA LINKS

PSG are considering a move for Aubameyang, according to Foot Mercato.

Cavani may leave the Ligue 1 giants for Atletico Madrid during this transfer window and Aubameyang could be his replacement, the report says.

PSG are reportedly discussing a loan with an option to buy Aubameyang.

 

ROUND-UP

- Staying at Emirates Stadium, Arsenal are close to a deal for Flamengo defender Pablo Mari, according to ESPN and other reports. The Premier League club will reportedly pay £8.4million (€10m) for the Spaniard.

- Marcos Rojo could be on his way out of Manchester United. After just three Premier League appearances this season, the defender is heading back to Estudiantes – where he started his career – on loan, according to the Mirror.

- Carles Perez is set to join Roma. Sky Sport Italia reports the Barcelona forward will join the Serie A club on loan until the end of the season, with a mandatory purchase option for €13m to be part of the deal.

- Inter are already preparing for a period of dominance, including next season. Sport Italia reports Napoli star Lorenzo Insigne has been offered to Inter, who may land the forward ahead of the 2020-21 campaign.

- Inter and Napoli seem to have a decent relationship. CalcioMercato reports Matteo Politano will swap Milan for Naples, where he will sign a deal until 2024 with a medical set for Monday.

- Mauricio Pochettino remains without a job after being sacked by Tottenham in November. The Mirror reports Spurs will be entitled to £10m in compensation if the Argentinian finds another job before the end of the season.

LaLiga president Javier Tebas condemned an awful day for Spanish football after Inaki Williams reported racist abuse while Barcelona and Valencia fans clashed at Mestalla.

Athletic Bilbao striker Williams said he was racially abused by Espanyol supporters during their top-flight match on Saturday.

The forward passed on a complaint to Athletic captain Iker Muniain, who in turn spoke with referee Jose Maria Sanchez Martinez, while Williams appeared to clash with fans as he was substituted.

Elsewhere, supporters of Barca and Valencia were involved in violent confrontations ahead of a match the home side won 2-0, handing Blaugrana head coach Quique Setien his first defeat.

Tebas vowed LaLiga would investigate both incidents, posting on Twitter: "Today we have taken a step back in the work started years ago.

"The violent incidents of Barcelona and Valencia, the racist insults to Inaki Williams, they do a lot of damage to all of Spanish football.

"LaLiga takes responsibility. We will look with the clubs where the error is."

Williams posted a message on his official Twitter account, writing: "It is very sad that today we continue to see racism in football. We have to end it among EVERYONE. Thanks for your support."

Quique Setien acknowledged Barcelona did not effectively carry out his game plan and their communication must be worked on following a humbling defeat at Valencia.

Setien lost for the first time since replacing Ernesto Valverde as Barca boss on January 13, going down 2-0 at Mestalla thanks to a double from Maxi Gomez – the first of which took a heavy deflection off Jordi Alba.

The Blaugrana were on the back foot for much of the match, rallying only briefly between the goals, and Setien conceded they had not played well.

The former Real Betis coach was left searching for improvement, suggesting his players had not understood their instructions.

"They still do not interpret [instructions] well or maybe we do not explain them well," Setien said. "Nobody likes what we have seen today.

"Valencia compromised us, they closed us down well. Positionally, there are things that we have to correct. We have given away many aimless passes. We do not work to do this.

"In the first half, we did not play well at all. The best thing was that we went into half-time at 0-0.

"In the second half, the team improved somewhat and we were able to get into the game, but this is not enough for us."

Setien insisted there was no issue with Barca's mentality, though, adding: "It was not a problem of attitude. I have seen how committed they are.

"We were not well positioned, we have not understood some things, while Valencia have raised the game. It has cost us."

Midfielder Sergio Busquets agreed Barca were taking time to adjust to Setien's tactics.

"I think the players have to adapt to the coaching staff's ideas," he said. "There were good things in this game and others that need to be improved."

Barcelona will bank €8.2million after allowing young striker Alejandro Marques to join Juventus.

The 19-year-old spent three years in Barcelona, scoring twice in the UEFA Youth League final victory against Chelsea in the 2017-18 season.

Marques progressed to the Barcelona B side, appearing in 11 games during this campaign, but did not make the step up from the ranks of La Masia into the first team at Camp Nou.

Barcelona decided to part ways with the Venezuelan teenager after receiving the Italian champions' offer, and have taken Matheus Pereira on loan from Juventus with an option to buy as part of the deal.

A statement from Barcelona said: "FC Barcelona have been active in the transfer market, with Barca B's Alejandro Marques joining Juventus for 8.2 million euros."

Brazilian midfielder Pereira left Juventus to join Dijon in August in a deal that was also described as a loan with an option to buy, but the French club announced that agreement was terminated on Friday.

Pereira played in 10 Ligue 1 matches for Dijon, starting six of those, but now has the chance to earn a permanent move to the Spanish giants, whom he joins until the end of the season.

Barcelona said Pereira passed his medical on Friday, and in announcing his arrival described the 21-year-old as a player the club have followed "for a long time", highlighting his touch and attacking potential.

Maxi Gomez atoned for an early penalty miss and fired Valencia to a rare 2-0 LaLiga home win against Barcelona, handing Quique Setien his first defeat as head coach.

Valencia came into Saturday's clash having beaten Barca in just one of their past 10 meetings in all competitions, winning last season's Copa del Rey final, while their most recent league success at the Mestalla came in February 2007.

But the Blaugrana were on the back foot from the outset this time around and, while Marc-Andre ter Stegen saved a first-half spot-kick, Gomez made amends as his strike shortly after the restart went in off Jordi Alba for an own goal.

Setien's side belatedly rallied, but after scraping past Granada and Ibiza in the coach's first two games in charge, their luck ran out, Gomez getting a goal himself with 13 minutes remaining.

Real Madrid, not in action against Real Valladolid until Sunday, now have the opportunity to pull three points clear of their bitter rivals at the top of the table.

Gerard Pique gifted Valencia a huge opportunity to take the lead after 12 minutes, his poor clearance prompting an attack that ended with the Barcelona defender clumsily chopping down Jose Gaya inside the area.

However, Ter Stegen came to his team-mate's rescue, brilliantly springing to his left to save Gomez's penalty.

Ter Stegen remained by far the busier of the two goalkeepers and awkwardly helped Gomez's fierce drive onto the crossbar before parrying Kevin Gameiro's follow-up wide.

Barca did not truly threaten until the opening seconds of the second half when Ansu Fati ran onto Lionel Messi's pass on the edge of the area but shot just wide.

It was Valencia who soon led as the off-colour away side struggled to clear, allowing Gomez to shoot hard and low from the right-hand side of the area, his effort deflecting off Alba to wrong-foot Ter Stegen and loop into the roof of the net.

Messi drilled past the right-hand post and sent a lob narrowly over the top, before Jaume Domenech was equal to a 20-yard free-kick as Barca's spell of dominance came too late to rescue a result.

Instead, Gomez got his goal, providing a clinical finish beyond the rooted Ter Stegen at the end of a Valencia counter-attack.


What does it mean? Concerns for Quique

Despite the narrow nature of the scoreline, there was an enormous amount of goodwill for Setien when his reign began with a win over Granada. But less than a week later, things are a little less rosy. Barca scarcely deserved the late victory in Ibiza and were completely outplayed here, provoking some early questions for the new coach.

Gomez makes amends

Valencia forward Gomez has now scored or assisted in five of his past six LaLiga appearances against Barcelona. He was at the centre of his side's best work throughout. After missing a penalty, the Uruguay internationl was unfortunate to strike the crossbar when Ter Stegen's handling was uncertain but then had a hand in each goal.

Pique so poor

Barca stalwart Pique did not start well, giving away a penalty, and hardly improved from there. Ter Stegen had to be alert to gather on the line, preventing a potential own goal, and then Pique failed to clear effectively in the build-up to the first goal.

What's next?

Valencia go to Cultural Leonesa in the Copa del Rey on Wednesday, hoping not to follow Atletico Madrid in crashing out at the hands of the minnows. Barcelona host Leganes in the same competition the following day.

Bundesliga leaders RB Leipzig have completed the signing of Dinamo Zagreb playmaker Dani Olmo on a four-and-a-half-year deal.

Leipzig – who are four points clear at the top of the Bundesliga – could end up paying in the region of €35million for Olmo, according to reports.

The 21-year-old, a product of Barcelona's famed La Masia academy, had been linked with several major clubs after impressing for Spain at last year's European Under-21 Championship and Dinamo in the Champions League.

Barca had been tipped to move for their former midfielder, while Premier League side Chelsea and Serie A club Milan also reportedly held an interest.

But Dinamo boss Nenad Bjelica revealed on Thursday a move to Leipzig was likely and the German club announced the completion of the deal on their official website two days later.

Olmo has scored eight goals in all competitions this season, including five in the Champions League, and earned his first senior Spain cap in November 2019.

Speaking to his new side's official website, he said: "Of course, I have noticed RB Leipzig's successful path in recent years.

"It is a young, attractive club that convinces me with its philosophy of developing talented players and placing their trust in them.

"I am now looking forward to getting to know the team as quickly as possible and to be on the pitch with the boys.

"I would like to contribute my strengths and help us to stay higher in the league and to be successful in all competitions for as long as possible."

He will train with his new team-mates for the first time on Monday and is in contention to make his debut against Borussia Monchengladbach at Red Bull Arena on February 1.

Bundesliga leaders RB Leipzig have completed the signing of Dinamo Zagreb playmaker Dani Olmo on a four-and-a-half-year deal.

Manchester United, Tottenham and Borussia Dortmund are hoping to sign Juventus midfielder Emre Can.

Can, 26, is out of favour in Turin and has made just two Serie A starts this season.

The former Liverpool midfielder will reportedly be allowed to leave during this transfer window and three European giants are eyeing the Germany international.

 

TOP STORY – MAN UTD, TOTTENHAM AND DORTMUND EYE EMRE CAN

Manchester United, Tottenham and Borussia Dortmund are chasing Juventus' Can, according to SPORT1.

With Euro 2020 coming up later this year, Can wants regular playing time to earn a spot in the Germany squad.

Can made 37 appearances in all competitions for Juve last season, but has played just eight times in 2019-20.

Sportmediaset reports Juve are working on a move for Napoli midfielder Allan to replace Can.

 

ROUND-UP

- Inter will wrap up a deal for Tottenham midfielder Christian Eriksen early next week, according to Sky Sport Italia. The Serie A club will pay €18million (£15.2m) plus €2m (£1.7m) in bonuses for Eriksen, who is out of contract at season's end.

- Staying at San Siro and Inter are targeting Chelsea forward Olivier Giroud after recognising it would be difficult to sign Napoli's Fernando Llorente, according to Sky Sport Italia.

- Barcelona are making progress in their bid to land Valencia forward Rodrigo, according to Sport. While working on a loan move, Barcelona want an option to buy at season's end, while Valencia want it to be an obligation to purchase for around €60m. The report says Barca are willing to pay Valencia a "penalty fee" if they do not make the loan permanent.

- Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Lemar is close to signing with Premier League club Arsenal, according to El Chiringuito. Lemar has made just nine LaLiga starts this season.

- Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain are in talks over a swap deal. Goal reports the clubs are discussing swapping full-backs Mattia De Sciglio and Layvin Kurzawa.

- With Marcus Rashford injured, Manchester United have looked at signing Shanghai Shenhua's Odion Ighalo and Monaco's Islam Slimani, who is on loan from Leicester City, according to Sky Sports.

Barcelona boss Quique Setien says he likes "all good players" amid links of a move for Valencia striker Rodrigo.

The LaLiga leaders are in the market for a new striker after Luis Suarez was ruled out for the majority of the campaign following surgery on his knee.

Barca have been linked with numerous players since Suarez went under the knife on January 11, including Chimy Avila, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Timo Werner.

Rodrigo is another rumoured target and Setien waxed lyrical over the Spain international, who has been nursing a knee injury of his own over the past few weeks.

Asked specifically about Rodrigo at his pre-match news conference ahead of this weekend's league clash with Valencia at Mestalla, Setien said: "I like all good players.

"He's an extraordinary footballer and tomorrow he could give us problems - he is a key player for their team.

"I would have preferred if he wasn't playing, but we know that if he's not there then there is another player. Valencia have a great squad with or without Rodrigo."

Setien was appointed as Ernesto Valverde's successor last week and has won his first two games in charge, including a 2-1 Copa del Rey victory against Ibiza in midweek.

Barca were given a real scare by the minnows, requiring a last-minute goal from Antoine Griezmann to secure a comeback victory and a last-16 tie against Leganes.

And after dominating the possession count in the wins over Granada and Ibiza, Setien admitted it would have counted for little had his side not picked up the victories.

"I had a huge shock in Ibiza," he said. "I am not going to lie, this is clear. We have to stress a lot the things that we give high importance to. In theory, this shouldn't take us long.

"But in general I already know that lots of people only care about results. Those will only care to win, not how we play. This is like this in today's football and its fine to me.

"I believe that the way [you play] should be valued too, how you get to the victory or how you lose. That seems like the right way to look at things, even though I can understand that some people only care about the results."

Barca are level on points with Real Madrid at the top of LaLiga ahead of their meeting with Valencia, who are seventh in the table after losing 4-1 at Real Mallorca last time out in the league.

Setien is wary of a response from Albert Celades' side, however, adding: "When a team like Valencia loses their previous match, the desire to break this streak is a motivation. As I always say and repeat, I always expect the best version of our rivals. 

"Valencia is a great team, without doubt, with very good footballers. They will make things difficult for us and it will be truly a match of great level. 

"Our capacity to harm them might be bigger because they are a team with capacity to attack. Surely they will try so we will take the most of those spaces. We will probably have more spaces than in the previous two matches."

Mikel Arteta described his confidence in Arsenal signing new players this month as "50-50", but he appears confident Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is not about to leave the club.

Calum Chambers has suffered a serious injury, while Arsenal will now also be without David Luiz through suspension after a red card at Chelsea, leaving Arteta short on defenders.

The Gunners have been linked with Shakhtar Donetsk's Mykola Matvienko and Paris Saint-Germain's Layvin Kurzawa, although Arteta would not comment on specific names ahead of the FA Cup fourth-round tie at Bournemouth.

The head coach acknowledged Arsenal have been looking at defenders, but he was unsure if there would be any January arrivals.

"I'm not going to be discussing any transfer links publicly," he told a news conference. "It's something that we are trying to do internally and, when we have news, we will communicate with you guys.

"We've been looking at different positions. Obviously, since I joined, we lost Calum and we had other circumstances and injuries in those positions, so it's true that, at the back, we've been short.

"But there are other positions as well, depending on what happens in the market, that we might need to assess.

"At the moment, I am 50-50, because this transfer window is very, very complicated. I only want to bring somebody in if I'm really convinced that he can really improve the level that we have."

One move Arteta is keen not to see go through, though, both this month and beyond, is Aubameyang to Barcelona, amid reported interest from the LaLiga giants.

Suggestions in the Spanish media this week said Aubameyang was open to the transfer, but that is not Arteta's understanding.

"As far as I know, a week ago, after a game at home, we were discussing that he said he was so happy," Arteta said.

"He didn't agree with the things that were written in the media and [said] he has his future here. That's what I understand at the moment."

Dani Ceballos' future appears less clear, the on-loan Real Madrid midfielder having been linked with a return to LaLiga after struggling to establish himself at Emirates Stadium and contending with injury.

"I had a conversation with Dani," Arteta said. "When I joined the club, he wasn't here, he was in Madrid because he was doing his rehab - for over a month - in Madrid with the team that owns him.

"And then, when I came here, he was doing his rehab and, by the first two or three weeks, he was getting back to fitness and I haven't seen much of him because he's only trained with us for a week or 10 days.

"So it's very early to assess what I can or cannot do with him. I heard about all those things but I have nothing to comment.

"He needs to get back to fitness and fight for his place. After that, we will make the selection that I think is fair with what I see on the pitch."

Real Madrid must again overcome lower-league opposition in the Copa del Rey last 16, while holders Valencia go to giant-killers Cultural Leonesa.

Zinedine Zidane's Madrid survived a scare against Unionistas de Salamanca in the previous round, and they will this time visit Real Zaragoza, who are fourth in LaLiga 2.

Barcelona were also tested by minnows in the previous round, scraping past Ibiza, but they have the benefit of a home fixture as they bid to reach the quarter-finals.

With LaLiga sides kept apart where possible, the Blaugrana were selected in one of just two ties solely involving top-tier teams.

They will face Leganes at Camp Nou while the majority of their LaLiga rivals are away from home.

Segunda B side Cultural defeated Atletico Madrid in extra-time on Thursday, and their reward is a meeting with Valencia, who beat Barca in last season's final.

Badajoz, the only other third-tier side remaining in the competition, also have LaLiga opposition in the form of Granada.

The second all-LaLiga tie saw Real Sociedad drawn at home to Osasuna.


Copa del Rey last-16 draw in full:

Badajoz v Granada
Cultural Leonesa v Valencia
Tenerife v Athletic Bilbao
Real Zaragoza v Real Madrid
Mirandes v Sevilla
Rayo Vallecano v Villarreal
Barcelona v Leganes
Real Sociedad v Osasuna

The Christian Eriksen saga could reach an end point as soon as Monday.

Reports in Italy indicate the midfielder's move to Inter is all but complete and a medical has been scheduled.

Eriksen's uncertain future has troubled Tottenham since well before Mauricio Pochettino's departure, with the Denmark international due to become a free agent at the end of the season.

 

TOP STORY – ERIKSEN DEAL AGREED

Eriksen, 27, will undergo a medical in Milan at the beginning of next week, according to various reports in Italy.

CalcioMercato claims Tottenham owner Daniel Levy has accepted an offer from Inter worth €15million (£12.6m), plus €5m (£4.2m) in add-ons.

Eriksen's new contract will reportedly run through to 2024 as the playmaker looks for a fresh start after growing stale in the Premier League.

If the move goes ahead, he will become Antonio Conte's third signing of the January transfer window after wing-backs Ashley Young and Victor Moses.

 

ROUND-UP

- Manchester United could face frustration in their long-running negotiations for Bruno Fernandes, which The Sun says have "collapsed" due to Sporting CP's valuation.

- United, meanwhile, are considering a shock move to bring Boca Juniors striker Carlos Tevez, 35, back to Old Trafford, claims Tuttosport. The Red Devils are in need of attacking reinforcements after losing Marcus Rashford to injury.

- Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has given LaLiga giants Barcelona the green light to begin transfer talks, according to Mundo Deportivo.

- Bayern Munich have commenced "concrete discussions" with Lyon over 19-year-old winger Yaya Soumare, reports L'Equipe. Salzburg and Bayern's Bundesliga rivals RB Leipzig are also said to be interested.

- Brazilian attacking midfielder Lucas Paqueta asked Stefano Pioli to be left out of Milan's match against against Brescia because he is keen to leave the club, claims CalcioMercato. Paris Saint-Germain are said to be interested.

Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong says tactics have not changed much since Quique Setien took over as head coach from Ernesto Valverde.

Valverde was sacked following the 3-2 defeat to Atletico Madrid in the Supercopa de Espana semi-finals, with Setien – an advocate of Johan Cruyff's possession-based approach – named as his successor on a two-and-a-half-year deal.

The 61-year-old appears to have had a prompt influence on Barca's style, the Catalans enjoying 82.4 per cent of the ball in the LaLiga win over Granada and 78 per cent in Wednesday's Copa del Rey victory in Ibiza.

Barca only managed three goals across those two games, though, suggesting they are yet to find a fluency to their attacking play – something for which Valverde was often criticised.

And De Jong says Setien has not made many alterations yet to the team's approach, telling reporters at a sponsor event on Thursday: "He doesn't ask anything concrete of me. The idea he has is the same as Valverde, the style of Barcelona possession.


"The only things that have changed are small details, but the intention is to have the ball.

"It seems like I've adapted easily, and I'm happy, but I know I can do much better. I also believe we have a lot of room to evolve as a team and we'll be better throughout the season."

De Jong signed for Barca last January but did not move until the end of the season, helping Ajax to the Eredivisie title and the Champions League semi-finals before his departure.

The Netherlands midfielder is now hoping to go further in European competition, perhaps as part of a treble.

"I want to win every trophy but, if I had to choose one, I'd choose the Champions League, although I want to lift LaLiga and the Copa del Rey," he said.

"Last year, Barcelona-Ajax would have been a beautiful final. Hopefully, I can be there this year."

Aston Villa have paid Barcelona €1million for 16-year-old English striker Louie Barry - predicting he could become "an outstanding number nine" with the club.

England Under-17 international Barry joined Barcelona from Villa's neighbours West Brom in July last year and was placed in the club's La Masia academy.

However, Barry is cutting his time short with the Camp Nou giants in favour of a chance at making the grade at Villa.

Barcelona announced in a statement: "Louie Barry is leaving FC Barcelona to join Aston Villa. The Villans will pay 1,048,000 euros to acquire the 16-year-old striker."

Barry made his debut for Barcelona's youth team in October and scored two goals in seven domestic league games, also appearing as a substitute in three UEFA Youth League matches.

Barcelona said he had demonstrated an "exemplary attitude" during his time at the club, while Villa were thrilled with their business.

Villa academy manager Mark Harrison said: "It sends a powerful message about the ambition of this football club.

"We're delighted - Louie is a local person and his family are all Villa fans, as is Louie.

"He is still a very young man but as he's developed, he's always been one player that you always recognise as having outstanding attributes."

Harrison told VillaTV: "He's got a fantastic mentality, he's desperate to do well for this football club.

"He's really driven, he's got great family support, but in terms of what he can achieve, we firmly believe that he can be an outstanding number nine for this football club."

Barcelona goalkeeper Neto could spend time on the sideline after spraining his left ankle in Wednesday's narrow Copa del Rey win over Ibiza.

Neto suffered the injury when he collided with team-mate Clement Lenglet and an Ibiza player in the 50th minute of the 2-1 victory.

The 30-year-old Brazilian was able to complete the match but will undergo testing on Thursday to determine the extent of the issue, Barca confirmed in a statement.

Neto was making his fourth appearance for the club since arriving from LaLiga rivals Valencia in the close season.

Barca needed two late Antoine Griezmann goals to avoid embarrassment against their third-tier opponents, who took a shock ninth-minute lead through a Josep Caballe deflection.

First-choice keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen will almost certainly return in goal for Saturday's LaLiga trip to Valencia, with 20-year-old Inaki Pena in line to serve as deputy.

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