En enlisting on the gong the Argentinian world champion Enzo Fernandez on Wednesday 1is February against 121 million euros, Chelsea added one more madness to their astronomical winter transfer window. A much more impressive activity than its European competitors, who have been cautious on the transfer market.
Zero points for PSG. After the many arrivals of the summer transfer window, Paris Saint-Germain ended the winter window without recruits… The fault of a market that started late, but also, according to two sources familiar with the matter, of Chelsea’s delays in the transmission of administrative documents necessary for the validation of the loan of the Moroccan Hakim Ziyech. Paris plans to submit an appeal to the French League. In the departure column, goalkeeper No. 2 Keylor Navas has joined Nottingham Forest.
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OL and OM. In Ligue 1, Lyon and Marseille have been more active than Paris, notably attracting two World Cup semi-finalists, Croatian Dejan Lovren (OL) and Moroccan Azzedine Ounahi (OM). OM also bought the promising center forward Vitinha (Braga) for 25 million euros (plus 7 bonus).
Good operation in Rennes. 20-year-old Ghanaian international winger Kamaldeen Sulemana has been transferred from Rennes to Southampton, England, Stade Rennes have announced. The Ghanaian, who arrived in Brittany in the summer of 2021 for a transfer valued at 15 million euros (excluding bonuses), leaves for around 25 million euros, according to several media, which makes him the 5e biggest sale in the history of Rennes behind Ousmane Dembélé, Nayef Aguerd, Ismaila Sarr and Eduardo Camavinga. Born in Techiman, in the south of Ghana, he was trained at the “Right To Dream” Academy, partner of the Danish club Nordsjaelland, where he made his professional debut before arriving in Rennes at the age of 19.
Direction the flat country. Algerian international striker Islam Slimani has left Brest to commit to Anderlecht until the end of the season (1re Belgian division), announced the two clubs. The 34-year-old Slimani, who had already had a rocky run in Europe, had only been in Brest since the summer but failed to make a name for himself, scoring just one league goal in October. Upon his arrival, the international with 41 goals in 89 games in the Algerian jersey was welcomed by his teammate Youcef Belaïli, but the latter left in the fall.
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Quack. Bordeaux missed an expected reinforcement in the attacking sector, because its sporting director Admar Lopes had his papers stolen just before taking the plane to complete the transfer, we learned from a source close to the club. An agreement had however been reached at the end of the transfer window with the club of this young striker playing abroad – whose name has not leaked -, provided that the transfer is done visually. But when boarding to join the country of the selling club, the Bordeaux sports director Admar Lopes had his bag stolen containing his personal papers and a computer. For lack of identity papers, the Portuguese could not board and the transfer fell through.
post for post. The Guinean international defender of Toulouse Issiaga Sylla, free next June, has been recruited by Montpellier to compensate for the departure of Nicolas Cozza to Wolfsburg, the Hérault club announced on Tuesday, a few hours before the end of the transfer window. Sylla, 29, has been with TFC since 2012 when he arrived from Horoya AC, one of the clubs in Guinea’s capital Conakry. Despite two loans to Gazelec Ajaccio (2015-2016), then to Lens (2020-2021), he played 211 matches in all competitions with the Toulouse club.
With more than 300 million euros committed in one month, Chelsea has evolved into a financial dimension apart on the football planet. By “stealing” the Ukrainian Mykhailo Mudryk (Shakhtar Donetsk) under the nose and beard of Arsenal against 100 million euros, the Blues had already surprised by their ability to line up without complaining about very high sums.
It was without counting on the improbable evening of Tuesday, at the end of which the club of Todd Boehly won the services of another hope of world football: the Argentine midfielder Enzo Fernandez, torn from Benfica. The amount of 121 million is a record in England and the duration of the contract challenges: it runs until… 2031, according to several media. The 22-year-old Argentinian will be 30 at the end of his lease in London! Chelsea therefore spent lavishly, also attracting Benoît Badiashile, Joao Felix (on loan), Noni Madueke and Malo Gusto (on loan to Lyon until June).
Premier League leader Arsenal has expanded its squad with Polish defender Jakub Kiwior, Belgian winger Leandro Trossard and Italian European champion Jorginho, snatched from Chelsea on Tuesday night. Elsewhere in England, Manchester City passed, Liverpool snapped up Dutch striker Cody Gakpo for €60m (bonus included), Newcastle dropped €45m for promising Anthony Gordon from Everton and Manchester United have recruited midfielder Marcel Sabitzer and Dutch striker Wout Weghorst to try to fill a big void: the one left by Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese superstar (37), released by the Red Devils after a final stroke of blood, was finally recruited at a high price by the Saudi club Al-Nassr on December 30.
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In Spain, paradoxically, the two behemoths Real Madrid and FC Barcelona have remained rather discreet. The biggest blow is the work of Atlético Madrid: the Colchoneros signed Dutch striker Memphis Depay, whose contract at Barça expired at the end of June, for only 3 million euros.
The Italian market has closed and Inter Milan still have Milan Skriniar in their ranks. The solid Slovak defender of Inter Milan, at the end of the contract in June and announced at Paris SG, was hoped for in France in the winter, but the Nerazzurro club retained him, for lack of a replacement found in time.
Weakened by injuries, Bayern had to activate on the transfer market to compensate for the absences of their captain and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and their defender Lucas Hernandez, packages at least until the end of the season. In goal, Bayern recruited Borussia Mönchengladbach goalkeeper Yann Sommer for 8 million euros, plus a million and a half euros in bonuses.
In defense, the Dutchman Daley Blind (32), free, signed until the end of the season and the Bavarians also obtained on Tuesday the loan with the option to buy the Portuguese side of Manchester City Joao Cancelo, in the perspective of the shock against Paris SG in the knockout stages of the Champions League (February 14 and March 8).
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