Barcelona are prepared to take a loss on Philippe Coutinho, sparking apparent interest from the Premier League.

Coutinho is on loan at Bayern Munich from Barcelona, and the Bundesliga giants hold an option to buy the Brazil playmaker.

If Bayern opt against purchasing Coutinho, Barca may be willing to sell the 27-year-old and accept a loss.

 

TOP STORY – BARCELONA READY TO SELL COUTINHO FOR £77M AMID PREMIER LEAGUE INTEREST

Coutinho has been told he can leave Barcelona for £77million (€90.7m) at the end of the season, according to the Daily Express.

Barcelona paid Liverpool €120m (£105m) for Coutinho in 2018, but are preparing for change under Quique Setien.

The report says Coutinho has already attracted interest from Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham.

Bayern hold an option to buy Coutinho for a reported €120m.

 

ROUND-UP

- Could it be one Brazilian in and another out at Liverpool? The Sun reports Bayern Munich want Roberto Firmino to leave the Premier League giants and join the Bundesliga outfit at the end of the season.

- Staying at Anfield and the Daily Express reports Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz is Liverpool's top midfield target ahead of 2020-21.

- With James Maddison reportedly ready to extend his contract at Leicester City, Manchester United's interest in the attacker has cooled significantly, according to the Daily Express.

- Thiago Silva wants to stay in Paris. Paris United reports the Paris Saint-Germain captain could discuss a new contract with club president Nasser Al-Khelaifi amid uncertainty over his future, with his deal expiring at the end of the season.

- Manchester United have angered Roma. The Daily Express says the Premier League club have increased their asking price for Chris Smalling from €14.1m (£12m) to €20m (£17m), with the defender having impressed during his loan spell with the Serie A outfit.

Bayern Munich will travel to Schalke in the quarter-finals of this season's DFB-Pokal.

The holders will head to Gelsenkirchen after they edged out Hoffenheim 4-3 in the previous round.

Eintracht Frankfurt – who beat Bayern in the 2018 final – will host Werder Bremen, while Bayer Leverkusen will meet Union Berlin at BayArena.

Fortuna Dusseldorf, who were 5-2 winners at Cologne in round three, were handed an away match against fourth-tier Saarbrucken.

The games will be played on March 3 and 4.

Bayern Munich failed with a late bid to sign Dani Olmo from Dinamo Zagreb, according to the Croatian club's sporting director Zoran Mamic.

Spain international Olmo joined RB Leipzig during the transfer window for a reported initial fee of €20million.

According to Mamic, the deal, which includes bonuses and a 20 per cent sell-on clause, represents "by far" the biggest sale in Dinamo's history.

However, Mamic claims they could have held out for even more had they ignored the forward's wishes and accepted a late offer from Bayern.

"Dani didn't want to go to Italy or England," he told Sportske Novosti. "He insisted on Leipzig.

"If we had had more time, he would have ended up at Bayern.

"We could certainly have got more out of the deal, but it wasn't just our decision. We could have said to Dani that we didn't accept the offer from Leipzig, but that wouldn't have been fair to him."

Having missed out on Olmo, Bayern have reportedly turned their attentions towards a bid for Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz with a view to a transfer at the end of the season.

The 20-year-old, who is said to be admired by Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, could cost as much as €130m according to reports in Germany.

Former Bayern midfielder Michael Ballack is not convinced Havertz is ready for such a step, though.

"At Bayern, you need other characteristics to assert yourself. Just being good is not enough there," he told Sport1.

"He needs time and the robustness to be prepared mentally for Bayern. He is still in the development phase and there are still mistakes in his game."

Manchester United look set to continue scrambling for strikers throughout deadline day.

While Bruno Fernandes has finally arrived, the Red Devils were reportedly less successful in a surprise bid to bring Bournemouth forward Joshua King back to Old Trafford.

Now, with the countdown well and truly on, a Tottenham target appears to have been removed from United's radar.

 

TOP STORY - UNITED PASS ON WILLIAN JOSE

Though still without Marcus Rashford, United have rejected the chance to sign Willian Jose on loan, according to Sky Sports.

Real Sociedad reportedly failed to gain a bite after offering the Brazilian striker to the Champions League aspirants amid negotiations with another Premier League club in Tottenham.

Spurs earlier looked to be in pole position to sign the 28-year-old permanently, but may now have to settle for a temporary deal as discussions continue.

The prospect of a bolstering their attack following Rashford's injury would have appealed to United, who reportedly failed in an attempt to capture Cherries star King.

The Telegraph claims Eddie Howe's insistence on keeping the Norwegian denied Ole Gunnar Solskjaer the chance to reunite with the player he coached while in charge of United's reserve side.

 

ROUND-UP

- Ligue 1 leaders Paris Saint-Germain will keep Edinson Cavani unless LaLiga side Atletico Madrid improve from €15million to €20m, according to ESPN reporter Julien Laurens.

- Juventus midfielder Emre Can will join Borussia Dortmund on loan with an obligation for the Bundesliga club to buy for €30m, reports Goal.

- Manchester City are set to beat Arsenal, Barcelona and Bayer Leverkusen to Coritiba's 17-year-old Brazilian right-back Yan Couto, claims Mundo Deportivo. 

- Ricardo Rodriguez is out the door and Milan might have settled on a shock replacement. Sky Sports suggests the Rossoneri have agreed an €11.9m (£10m) deal to take left-back Antonee Robinson from Championship outfit Wigan Athletic. The Serie A side are also said to be on the cusp of signing Anderlecht youngster Alexis Saelemaekers.

- Inter and Lazio are competing to secure Chelsea centre-forward Olivier Giroud before the transfer window shuts, claims Sky Sport Italia. 

Have Tottenham finally found an alternative to Harry Kane?

According to reports, Spurs are in talks to sign Real Sociedad's Willian Jose with just over a week to go until the transfer window closes.

But it could take in excess of £50million to finally end their search for a second out-and-out striker.

 

TOP STORY – SPURS TO DIG DEEP FOR SOCIEDAD STRIKER

Krzysztof Piatek, Islam Slimani and Fernando Llorente have all been linked but Tottenham have now set their sights on 28-year-old Willian Jose, reports the Guardian.

The Brazilian was left out of his side's Copa del Rey clash with Espanyol on Wednesday and could now be headed for north London.

Talks are underway, the Guardian states, although Spurs could be forced to contemplate meeting Willian Jose's €70million (£59m) release clause as Sociedad seek adequate compensation.

The one-time Real Madrid man has scored eight LaLiga goals this term after reaching double figures in each of the previous three seasons.

 

ROUND-UP

- Dani Ceballos has asked Real Madrid to terminate his Arsenal loan and find him a move elsewhere, according to Spanish radio station Cadena SER.

- The Gunners are set to suffer another blow as Ligue 1 outfit Lyon prepare to confirm the €25million signing of rumoured Atletico Madrid target Bruno Guimaraes, reports L'Equipe.

- Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich will allow Philippe Coutinho to return to Barcelona at the end of his loan spell if, as desired, the Bundesliga giants land Leroy Sane and Bayer Leverkusen's Kai Havertz, reports Bild.

- After sealing a deal for Reinier Jesus, Madrid could return to raid Flamengo for 19-year-old forward Lincoln, says Mundo Deportivo.

- Leicester City plan to bolster their Champions League ambitions by splashing £15million on Southampton centre-back Jannik Vestergaard, according to The Sun.

- Serie A side Milan have submitted an 18-month loan offer for Manchester City-linked Florentino Luis, claims CalcioMercato. The 20-year-old defensive midfielder plays for Benfica.

Peter Bosz is staying with Bayer Leverkusen for another two years after earning glowing praise from Rudi Voller.

The former Ajax and Borussia Dortmund head coach is 13 months into his reign at the BayArena, and earned swift acclaim last season by leading Leverkusen from mid-table into a Champions League place.

This term they sit sixth, just two points behind fourth-placed Dortmund.

Bosz is the coach Leverkusen believe will continue to deliver progress, prompting them to announce a new two-year deal for the head coach on Friday.

A statement on the club's website said: "Bayer 04 Leverkusen are keeping faith with head coach Peter Bosz and his fellow coaches. The Bundesliga club and the Dutchman extended the employment contract, which was due to expire at the end of the current season, until June 30, 2022."

Voller, the former Germany striker and head coach who is now Leverkusen's managing director of sport, praised Bosz's work.

He said 56-year-old Bosz had shown himself to be "a coach whose thumb print is evident in every training session and every game".

Voller added: "He has the crucial ability to continually develop a team.

"Peter's approach to the game fits in perfectly with us as Bayer 04 have played aggressive and high-tempo football with joy for many years.

"Both sides are happy that our partnership will continue after the end of this season. This mutual desire was evident early on. Now was the right time to make it happen."

Bosz welcomed confirmation of his new contract, saying: "We're working hard every day to create the conditions to win titles and look forward to continuing to make progress with Bayer 04."

The Bundesliga returns from its mid-season break this weekend, with Leverkusen away at Paderborn on Sunday.

Jamaica international Leon Bailey has insisted he is ready to move on from a tumultuous start to the season, which saw the player pick up two red cards in five appearances.

The 23-year-old Bayer Leverkusen winger was given his marching orders in matches against FC Koln and Borussia Mönchengladbach, a strange position for him to find himself in as they were the first of his career.

 Against Koln, where Bailey was given a red card for pushing his hand into the face of Kingsley Ehzibue, he was asked to apologize to the team by captain Lars Bender.  The Jamaican insists the request was completely understandable.

“Of course I had to apologize to the team for that. That was also important to me,” Bailey said in an interview with RP Online.

“We are a unit and the team should understand how I see the situation and that it was very tough for me. I regret what happened. It was a mistake - especially in the game in Cologne that was so important to the fans, but it was never a bad intention behind it. It was just some very bad reactions from me. But now everything is fine again. In the second half of the season, I want to be more relaxed and, above all, more efficient on the pitch so that we can achieve our goals,” he added.

After a troubling several months that have seen the player plagued by injury and inconsistent form, Bailey has attributed the increased aggressiveness to high levels of motivation.

“It is relatively easy for me to stay cool - no matter how much I am provoked by an opponent. But last season I had a lot of ups and downs and some injuries. It also affected my head and my psyche. That's why I was over-motivated in the first half of the season in the two situations and much too aggressive.”

 

Social media is abuzz with excitement over rumours that Jamaican International, Leon Bailey, is a target of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool.

Bailey, who turns out for Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga, had a phenomenal first year there but the last season and a half have been a little more mute.

Still, Liverpool fans believe targeting Bailey, who made his international debut for Jamaica last year, is a good idea because the winger could flourish under the guidance of Klopp and could be a good replacement for Jadon Sancho, who is a marked man.

According to the ‘Anfield Edition’, Sancho still remains a target for Liverpool, however, with interest from Chelsea and Manchester United, as well as Borussia Dortmund, being an unwilling seller, a deal may be difficult.

Rumours of Bailey moving to England aren’t new either, with links to all the big clubs coming before he left Genk in Belgian’s top-flight league for Germany.

“But under Klopp, he will be a class player,” read one of the many comments.

“Great talent with a huge upside Yes please,” read another.

Bailey has scored just three goals in eight league games for Leverkusen this season but much of the period has been spent nursing injuries as well as on suspension from two red cards.

Bailey, has so far, played five games for the Reggae Boyz and has scored one goal.

The winger started with the Phoenix All Stars Academy, the brainchild of his father and agent, Craig Butler, where he stayed from 2009-2011 before moving to FC Liefering and then to Trencin. From 2015-17, Bailey was a Genk player until he was sold to Leverkusen for whom he has played 75 times and scored 17 goals.

Jamaica international and rising Bundesliga star Leon Bailey has been cautioned about his poor disciplinary record so far this season by his agent and guardian Craig Butler.

The 22-year-old Bayer Leverkusen winger has received two red cards in five appearances so far.  The dismissals, which came against FC Koln and Borussia Mönchengladbach were the first of his career. 

The player’s latest infringement, which occurred against Koln, was pushing his hand into the face of Kingsley Ehzibue.  Bailey has, as a result, been suspended for three Bundesliga games and handed a fine of €20,000. Butler has insisted the player’s recent trend is one that cannot continue.

"Of course, I talked to Leon about his red cards again,” Butler told Bild.

"Leon has to understand that defenders want to stop and provoke fast players,” he added.

“I told him that I would not come back to the stadium if it happened to him again.  It will be interesting to see whether this threat actually bears fruit.”

Bailey, who has scored three goals and claimed one man-of-the-match award so far this season, will miss the start of the second half of the season against Paderborn in two weeks time.

Monaco have high expectations and a mid-table position just will not cut it for the principality club.

Pressure may have eased on Leonardo Jardim after his inconsistent team thrashed Lille on Saturday, but fresh reports claim Monaco are looking at options for a new head coach.

Could Unai Emery - a Ligue 1 winner with Paris Saint-Germain but a disappointment at Arsenal - be just the man for the job?

 

TOP STORY - EMERY SET FOR DUGOUT RETURN?

Monaco are reportedly hunting for a new boss as Jardim's future looks bleak with the Monegasque club, and Emery is said to be a target.

According to Le 10 Sport, Monaco officials are considering former Valencia boss Marcelino and ex-PSG and France head coach Laurent Blanc.

A third coach reported to be interesting Monaco is Emery, who was sacked by Arsenal last month after a dismal run of form with the Premier League side.

The Spaniard would bring experience of French football after his time at PSG, with Sevilla and Valencia also among his former teams.

Monaco sit seventh in Ligue 1 this term, with Jardim handed a welcome boost when his team produced a shock 5-1 win over Lille at the weekend.

ROUND-UP

- Barcelona are looking to loan out two of their brightest young talents to improve their prospects of first-team action, according to Marca. The Spanish newspaper says 21-year-old midfielder Carles Alena could go to Real Betis or Getafe, and that 19-year-old centre-back Jean-Clair Todibo is interesting Bayer Leverkusen along with other clubs from Germany and Italy.

- Arturo Vidal could be another player on the move from Barcelona, with Inter said to be targeting a deal for the 32-year-old Chilean. A four-time Serie A winner with Juventus, Vidal's role at Barcelona has become reduced this season and a Camp Nou departure looks a sensible solution. La Gazzetta dello Sport reports Inter are lining up a bid of €12million. Inter boss Antonio Conte knows Vidal well from their time together at Juventus, whom Inter are battling with for the Scudetto this term.

- Arsenal are keeping a close eye on Lyon's former Celtic striker Moussa Dembele, according to Le 10 Sport. If Arsenal lose Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang or Alexandre Lacazette, the report says Dembele would be a prime target for the Gunners, whose hopes of qualifying for next season's Champions League appear slim after a shabby first half of the Premier League season. Mikel Arteta has just taken the Emirates Stadium reins.

- Thomas Tuchel could soon be on the lookout for a new PSG assistant, with reports from Germany claiming his Hungarian number two Zsolt Low is a possible target for Stuttgart. Tim Walter lost his job with the Bundesliga second division team on Monday. The Stuttgarter Nachrichten reports the club, whose chief executive is former Aston Villa, Everton and Germany midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger, have former Leipzig assistant boss Low in mind but have yet to approach any candidate.

With Atletico Madrid struggling for regular goals, Diego Simeone is keen to address the problem.

Atletico have only scored 20 goals in 18 LaLiga matches this season – the club relying heavily on Alvaro Morata's seven strikes.

Simeone's solution could be about to arrive from the French capital, where a Paris Saint-Germain star has fallen down the pecking order.

 

TOP STORY – MADRID NEARING CAVANI DEAL

Paris Saint-Germain forward Edinson Cavani is close to joining Atletico Madrid in January, according to Marca.

Cavani has reportedly agreed a two-and-a-half-year contract with Atletico, while PSG would prefer to keep the 32-year-old until the end of the season.

The soon-to-be free agent has found himself behind loanee Mauro Icardi, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar this season.

Signing Cavani in the January transfer window could force Atletico to sell due to their salary-limit issue, with Thomas Lemar a possible casualty.

 

ROUND-UP

- Manchester United pair Nemanja Matic and Marcos Rojo have been told they will be sold in January, according to the Daily Star. Matic has been linked with Serie A duo Milan and Inter, while Atletico have emerged as an option for the veteran midfielder.

- According to AS, Valencia want to sign right-back Joao Cancelo from Premier League champions Manchester City. The LaLiga outfit are keen for a January reunion with Cancelo, who initially joined Valencia in 2014 before leaving permanently in 2018. Valencia want to re-sign the Portugal international on an initial loan.

Hertha Berlin have entered negotiations with Granit Xhaka to bring the former Arsenal captain back to the Bundesliga, reports RMC Sport. Hertha have turned their attention to ex-Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Xhaka after failing to prise Lucas Tousart from Lyon.

Chelsea have been offered the chance to sign Isco. The Daily Express says Real Madrid are trying to offload players to free up funds to bring in Tottenham star Christian Eriksen in January. City are also reportedly interested in Madrid's Isco.

Mario Mandzukic's proposed switch to Qatari outfit Al-Duhail from Juventus has broken down due to wage expectations, according to Tuttomercatoweb.

- Mundo Deportivo claims Barcelona only want to loan out defender Jean-Clair Todibo in January amid interest from Milan and Bayern Leverkusen. United have also been linked with the 19-year-old.

Mikel Arteta officially started work at Arsenal on Sunday and appears set to get busy in the transfer market.

The Gunners reportedly have two targets in their sights, including a Serie A star.

Arsenal could do with an injection of excitement after slipping to 11th in the Premier League following their lacklustre goalless draw at Everton.

 

TOP STORY – GUNNERS EYE MERTENS AND VOLLAND

Among the players Arsenal admire is Napoli mainstay Dries Mertens, according to CalcioMercato.

Mertens, on target five times in the Champions League this term, will be available on a free at the end of the season.

Borussia Dortmund are also said to be interested in the 32-year-old, potentially forcing Arsenal to look elsewhere for reinforcements.

That could result in them launching a bid for Kevin Volland. Sky Sports News says the Gunners have sent scouts to watch the Bayer Leverkusen forward and will put his name to new boss Arteta for consideration.

 

ROUND-UP

- Paolo Maldini's position as Milan technical director is "in the balance" following the embarrassing 5-0 loss to Atalanta, claims CalcioMercato. The Rossoneri are languishing in 11th.

- Manchester United and multiple Bundesliga clubs are tracking teenage Birmingham City midfielder Jude Bellingham, reports The Telegraph.

- German newspaper Bild believes goalkeeper Alexander Nubel will join Bayern Munich at the end of the season after announcing his decision to leave Schalke on a free. According to Sport1, his arrival at Allianz Arena could lead to Sven Ulreich's exit.

- Ligue 1 side Monaco have identified Marcelo Gallardo, Laurent Blanc and Marcelino as potential replacements for the under-pressure Leonardo Jardim, according to L'Equipe.

- Juventus outcast Mario Mandzukic is set to seal a switch from the Serie A champions to Qatari side Al-Duhail, reports Sky Sport Italia.

Bayer Leverkusen have bolstered their midfield options with the signing of highly rated Argentina international Exequiel Palacios from River Plate.

Palacios, 21, will join on January 1 and has signed a five-and-a-half-year contract with the Bundesliga side.

Capped four times by Argentina, Palacios has been around River's first-team for four years but began to appear more regularly in 2017-18.

A technically gifted midfielder with a keen eye for a pass, Palacios played a crucial role in River's successful Copa Libertadores campaign in 2018.

His form at the time saw him emerge as a reported target for Real Madrid, yet those links went cool despite Palacios' agent claiming in January that talks between the two clubs had gone well and were "quite advanced".

Two significant injuries – a fractured leg and hamstring tear – disrupted his progress earlier this year, but he has continued to earn praise for his performances since returning to fitness.

River coach Marcelo Gallardo expressed his frustration at having an "almost sold player" before the year had even finished at the end of November, with Leverkusen expected to sign Palacios for several weeks.

Monday brought the confirmation that they have their man, with Palacios' release clause at River reportedly securing them a €15million transfer fee.

Frenkie de Jong, Matthijs de Ligt and now Donny van de Beek?

Ajax lost stars De Jong and De Ligt in the off-season and Van de Beek is now reportedly nearing an Amsterdam exit.

It may be the case that the midfielder can choose between the two Spanish powerhouse clubs.

 

TOP STORY –  BARCA & MADRID WANT VAN DE BEEK

LaLiga giants Barcelona and Real Madrid are battling to sign Ajax midfielder Donny van de Beek, according to reports.

Van de Beek was heavily linked to Madrid as an alternative to Manchester United star Paul Pogba during the previous transfer window.

Now, Sport claims Van de Beek could be available for between €50-60million.

 

ROUND-UP

Bayer Leverkusen are poised to sign River Plate's Exequiel Palacios, says Kicker. Palacios – previously tipped to join Madrid – is set to move to Bundesliga outfit Leverkusen in January in a €22m deal.

- Mundo Deportivo and Calciomercarto claim Barca and Milan have met to discuss the future of defender Jean-Clair Todibo. LaLiga champions Barca are reportedly happy to part with the 19-year-old.

- According to 90min, Liverpool are set to beat Manchester City and Chelsea to Coventry City left-back Sam McCallum.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has walked away from negotiations with Milan, reports Calciomercato. A free agent after leaving LA Galaxy, Ibrahimovic has been linked with a return to Milan, as well as Napoli. But the 38-year-old is reportedly not moving back to San Siro after failing to reach an agreement.

- Valencia teenager Ferran Torres is high on the agenda of Madrid, according to AS. The 19-year-old is attracting interest from across Europe, including Liverpool and Juventus.

- Keen to provide competition for Tammy Abraham, 90min says Chelsea are considering a January bid for Bordeaux forward Josh Maja.

Kai Havertz broke a record previously held by his international team-mate Timo Werner on Saturday, becoming the youngest man to make 100 appearances in the Bundesliga.

The Bayer Leverkusen midfielder brought up the milestone in Saturday's trip to Cologne as he reached a century of games at the age of 20 years and 186 days, 17 days younger than RB Leipzig striker Werner was when he reached 100 matches in 2016.

Havertz, already capped seven times by Germany, is considered one of Europe's most promising young talents and has been linked with a host of clubs across the continent, including Bayern Munich, Manchester United, Barcelona and Liverpool.

Here, with the help of Opta, we look at Havertz's Bundesliga career so far.

17 years and 126 days - That was Havertz's age when he debuted in the Bundesliga in October 2016. He was the youngest player to appear in the German top flight for Leverkusen, and the 10th youngest of all time in the Bundesliga. Nuri Sahin holds the league's record, first appearing for Borussia Dortmund at 16 years and 334 days.

17 years and 144 days - Less than three weeks after his Bundesliga debut, Havertz made his Champions League bow in a 1-0 win at Tottenham. Later in that season's Champions League, he missed a last-16 game because he had to sit a school exam.

17 years and 295 days - Havertz became Leverkusen's youngest Bundesliga scorer when he netted in a 3-3 draw with Wolfsburg in April 2017.

50 - A year later, Havertz made his 50th Bundesliga appearance - becoming the youngest player to reach that milestone. He marked the occasion with two assists in a 4-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt.

24 - As a teenager, Havertz scored 24 goals, including 17 in 2018-19. No player in the competition's history has scored more goals before their 20th birthday, with Havertz level with Horst Koppel.

26 - Since making his Bundesliga debut, Havertz has scored 26 goals. No player born in 1999 or later has scored as many goals in the top five European leagues.

43 - In his 99 Bundesliga appearances so far, Havertz has been directly involved in 43 goals for Leverkusen (26 goals and 17 assists).

17 - Havertz became the first teenager in Bundesliga history to score at least 17 goals in a season in 2018-19.

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