Manchester United and Barcelona are set to have busy weeks ahead of them while the likes of Chelsea, Juventus, PSG, AC Milan and Manchester City are also expected to be active in the transfer market. There are some interesting deals possible this transfer window and with Euro 2020 action heating up, football fans are in for a treat in the coming weeks.
Here’s my weekly rundown of all the important stories dominating the transfer market right now, with Manchester United's long pursuit of Jadon Sancho and Lionel Messi's contract situation at Barcelona coming under the scanner.
Manchester United submit €85 million bid for Jadon Sancho
The biggest deal in progress right now is Jadon Sancho. In the past 24 hours, Manchester United have expressed their willingness to Borussia Dortmund to pay around €85 million including the use of add ons as part of the negotiation. The request from the German club is €95 million, so the distance is now very short and Manchester United are trying to close the deal as soon as possible. There is no complete agreement yet, but Manchester United are optimistic, as is the player's camp.
It should be remembered that Man United already have an agreement on personal terms with Jadon Sancho until June 2026, everything is ready from a contractual point of view. An agreement has also been reached with his representatives for the agent's fee, so it all depends on Borussia Dortmund with whom the negotiations have been going on for weeks.
Jadon Sancho has clear ideas. He wants Manchester United, having already been one step away from joining the club a year ago in the summer of 2020.
Manchester City interested in signing Harry Kane
Manchester City have also officially moved for Harry Kane. £100 million has been officially offered to sign Harry Kane from Tottenham.
Manchester City would also be ready - if the proposal were to the satisfaction of Tottenham - to include in the deal also some technical counterparts such as Aymeric Laporte or Gabriel Jesus (more than Sterling who would not like to be used as a trading pawn). It is understood, however, that the the total value of the transaction will always remain at 100 million pounds.
This is the figure that Manchester City have offered in cash, but one that Tottenham did not accept. The president of the club, Daniel Levy (known for his firmness in the transfer market), would not want to deprive himself of Kane. Harry Kane has a valid contract with Tottenham until 2024.
For several months, Kane - now with the English national team at Euro 2020 - has communicated to Tottenham his desire to leave during this summer's transfer market session. In recent weeks, Kane himself has publicly stated that he will evaluate his future at Tottenham, leaving more than just a niggling doubt about his stay at the club.
In any case, the player is now 100% focused on the Euros and does not want any distraction. The decision will only be made after the completion of Euro 2020 with England.
Lionel Messi close to signing 2 year contract with Barcelona
At Barcelona, on the other hand, they are working on the theme of Lionel Messi's contract, even today, which is his birthday. Over the past year, Barcelona fans have seriously feared losing Messi but, despite a contract expiring on 30 June, this will not happen. The Argentine champion is ready to sign the new contract with the Blaugrana club and is ready for another two seasons in Spain until 2023.
The signature on the renewal of Messi's contract is imminent but still not 100% completed. The Argentine is very close to the agreement with Laporta and will continue his extraordinary history with Barcelona, but first, they still need to settle some clauses that bind Lionel Messi and Barçelona. Some details still need to be clarified as the club is working within the salary limits imposed by La Liga.
But Lionel Messi is ready to accept President Laporta's proposal, so hopefully soon the signatures will arrive and Messi will remain a Barca player until 2023. The official announcement will be made by the club at the right time. Two more seasons in Barcelona, therefore, for the Argentine, who will remain until after the World Cup in Qatar.
Lionel Messi, at the moment, is busy with Argentina in Copa America and is therefore focused on this important appointment with the national team. Messi's father and brother also flew to South America to celebrate Leo's 34th birthday. For this reason, it may take a few more days to formalize the agreement and make it official. But Leo Messi, at least for the next two years, is preparing to wear the Blaugrana shirt again.
PSG determined to beat Chelsea in race to sign Inter star Achraf Hakimi
These are decisive hours for Achraf Hakimi's potential transfer to Paris Saint-Germain. Hakimi, in fact, is interested in a move to Paris. Inter have identified Hakimi as the main asset to cash in and succeed in their goal, clearly stated by President Zhang, to close the market with a minimum of €80 million profit.
An understanding between the clubs is being worked on but the player's willingness to play at PSG could be decisive. Inter's valuation of Hakimi is around €70 million. PSG's offer is stuck at €65 million but the Nerazzurri are in no hurry and will only give the go-ahead to the sale after a further raise, which is expected in the next few hours.
However, the dialog between the two clubs has been going on for several days and Inter have already rejected a previous offer. This could result in other clubs getting an opportunity to sign Hakimi with Chelsea in the lead. Paris Saint-Germain are now ready to close the deal.
Hakimi was one of the undisputed protagonists this season and played a key role in Inter winning the Scudetto. Arriving last year from Real Madrid, who had loaned him out to Borussia Dortmund previously, he made 45 appearances in all competitions with the Nerazzurri: 37 in Serie A, 3 in the Italian Cup and 5 in the Champions League. He also had his best season in terms of scoring, scoring 7 times and serving 10 assists in the league (plus one in the Champions League).
This will not be the only transfer under consideration on the Milan-Paris route. The announcement of Gianluigi Donnarumma, who has already undergone medical examinations, is also expected from PSG. Donnarumma will sign for 5 years until 2026. Meanwhile, Calhanoglu will say goodbye to AC Milan as a free agent. The Turkish midfielder instead goes to Inter. In this case, the unexpected and surprising deal is already official. Calhonoglu's contract with Inter is until 2024.
Juventus make their move for Italy star Manuel Locatelli
Attention must also be drawn to another great protagonist of Euro 2020. Manuel Locatelli is shining with Italy and Juventus are trying to anticipate interest from Premier League clubs. The negotiation has officially started. The meeting scheduled between the Bianconeri and Sassuolo was held on Wednesday to discuss the future of the midfielder, born in 1998.
Juventus received a positive response to their request for the possible transfer of the player. A useful meeting to understand the respective intentions and make a new appointment. The parties will meet again next week, when details of the negotiations will be entered into to discuss the formula and figures of their transfer and technical counterparts. The request starts at €40 million.
Locatelli is followed by many English clubs. Juventus talked to Sassuolo who opened the possibility for Radu Dragusin, a defender who could be useful to take the place in the squad of Marlon, who was sold to Shakhtar Donetsk. The presence of the 19-year-old Romanian as a technical counterpart would also allow the Bianconeri to get closer to the request of 40 million euros made by Sassuolo to sell Locatelli.
Other names under consideration are those of 20-year-old Nicolò Fagioli and Felix Correia in the Locatelli deal. The transfer formula also remains to be defined. Juventus could propose a favorable solution for the budget, such as a two-year loan with an obligation-to-buy clause.
Olivier Giroud linked with Chelsea exit
Finally, there may be some departures at Chelsea. In fact, Milan and Olivier Giroud are getting closer and closer. All the details of the contract that would tie the French forward to the Rossoneri club have been defined.
Olivier Giroud would receive €3.5 million per season plus bonuses for two years. The deal is possible despite the recent renewal of the agreement that binds the striker and Chelsea,. Giroud had in fact made a pact with the club to free himself and his agents now hope to be able to find an agreement. However, Milan are now evaluating the possibility of closing a wider negotiation with Chelsea.
After buying Tomori from the Blues, AC Milan have also asked for information on Hakim Ziyech. At the moment, however, Chelsea have no intention of giving discounts. For the Rossoneri midfield, the name of Tiémoué Bakayoko returns, who returned to Chelsea after a season on loan at Napoli.
Bakayoko remains a player that AC Milan continue to think about. For the 26-year-old Franco-Ivorian, it would be a comeback. He already wore the Milan shirt during the 2018/19 season, making 42 appearances in all competitions.