The coronavirus pandemic made the transfer market unlike any before it, but there was still plenty of action on Deadline Day. With the window closed across the major leagues in Europe, you can check out the latest major completed transfers across the globe.
TOP STORY: Man United go after Valverde
Manchester United have their eyes set on Real Madrid star Federico Valverde, The Sun reports.
The youngster, who has a massive £640 million release clause at the Bernabeu, is slowly but surely starting to prove himself in Real’s first team after years of hype from the media and the club themselves.
United midfielder Paul Pogba has been tipped to go in the opposite direction in recent months, but the Red Devils’ focus seems to be shifting towards bringing Valverde over to Old Trafford with the idea of a swap deal being fresh in their mind.
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13.43 BST: Brighton & Hove Albion have announced the signing of former England striker Danny Welbeck.
Welbeck, 29, was a free agent following the termination of his contract at Watford by mutual consent.
Brighton manager Graham Potter said of the former Manchester United and Arsenal forward: “We are delighted to have Danny joining us. He will complement our existing striking options.
“He’s got an undoubted pedigree, and he is quick and technically very good. He will add to our attacking threat and we are thrilled to add another player of his experience and quality.”
✍️ Albion have completed the signing of striker Danny Welbeck.
The former Manchester United, Arsenal and Watford forward has agreed a one-year deal with Albion!
— Brighton & Hove Albion (@OfficialBHAFC) October 18, 2020
13.06 BST: Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke says he thinks that Manchester United “misjudged” their pursuit of Jadon Sancho in the transfer window, but has not ruled out the possibility of a future transfer.
United had been trying for much of the year to sign the England winger, but were unwilling to pay the €120m transfer fee that Dortmund wanted. The German club gave United a hard deadline of Aug. 10 to meet their valuation, but that came without a satisfactory bid being submitted.
Sancho remains at Dortmund, where he has made four appearances so far this season, most recently in Saturday’s 1-0 win at Hoffenheim (stream the replay on ESPN+ in the U.S.).
“Perhaps a club that wanted him misjudged it and believed we were ready to compromise,” Watzke told German broadcaster ZDF. “We had a clear line, and we will have it next summer.
“In this day and age you can never say that a player is totally unsellable. But it is also absolutely clear that we don’t want to give anybody up.”
Sancho’s contract at the Westfalenstadion runs until 2023, meaning Dortmund will still be in a position of strength in any negotiations over a move for the 20-year-old next summer.
– Dawson: No Sancho, no centre-back — United’s transfer window has fans expecting the worst
Jan Aage Fjortoft praises the Borussia Dortmund hierarchy for having so much faith in Gio Reyna.
11.51 BST: Bayern Munich left-back David Alaba continues to play a big part for the European champions despite the stand-off between him and the club over his contract, which expires at the end of the season.
The Austria international in Saturday’s 4-1 win at Arminia Bielefeld (stream the replay on ESPN+ in the U.S.) meaning he has started each of the club’s three Bundesliga fixtures since missing the season-opening 8-0 win over Schalke.
As it stands, Alaba can open talks with foreign clubs in January over a free transfer next summer.
Last month German outlet Sport Bild said that Bayern offered the 28-year-old an annual salary of €11m and a further €5m as bonuses. Kicker reported that Alaba’s side, represented by agent Pini Zahavi, requested a €125m package for a new five-year deal.
– Bundesliga on ESPN+: Stream LIVE games and replays (U.S. only)
10.34 BST: Antoine Griezmann, who has been linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain in recent weeks, struggled on Saturday when playing in the central role he has wanted since joining Barcelona.
Griezmann, who earned his fourth La Liga start in Saturday’s 1-0 loss at Getafe, returned to lead the line in Barca’s attack having previously played on the right in the previous three league games.
After scoring in Wednesday’s 2-1 win against Croatia, Griezmann had said he felt good while representing his country because national team boss Didier Deschamps “plays me in my best position.” However, he took just one shot against Getafe and has yet to score for the Catalan giants this season.
Barcelona director Guillermo Amor says Antoine Griezmann must play where Ronald Koeman wants him: “Antoine Griezmann probably prefers to play in one position but he has to play where the coach tells him to.”
Earlier this week, Spanish programme El Chiringuito reported that Griezmann was PSG’s top target and they were ready to make a move in the January transfer window.
– Barca ratings: Griezmann 5/10 in Koeman’s first defeat
Julien Laurens thinks Antoine Griezmann “made a mistake” complaining about his predicament at Barcelona in public.
09.30 BST: Chelsea forward Timo Werner has said that Chelsea must strengthen their defending if they are going to win any trophies this season, as the club remain focused on signing West Ham’s Declan Rice.
The Blues signed centre-back Thiago Silva, left-back Ben Chilwell and goalkeeper Edouard Mendy in the last transfer window, while Werner was one of several big-money attacking additions to Frank Lampard’s squad.
Only Chilwell played in Saturday’s home game against Southampton, in which Werner scored his first two Premier League goals and set up another for fellow new arrival Kai Havertz, but Chelsea twice led a lead slip and the game ended 3-3.
“The first half we played very well,” Werner told the BBC. “When you get a goal two or three minutes before half-time it is not easy. You have to think with a clear head. Southampton make a lot of pressure on us and pressed us high. We gave them too much in terms of opportunities. We have to win the game.
“I am happy about the goals but I want to win the game. 50% I am happy, 50% not.
“I don’t know if we have a problem but the last three games we concede six goals and it is not where we want to be, to compete for titles. In Germany we always say defence wins titles. If we concede so many it is hard to win games and win titles.”
Sources have told ESPN’s James Olley that Chelsea will look to sign Rice in January if West Ham show signs of softening their stance in negotiations.
– Chelsea ratings: Werner 9/10 but Kepa, defence cost Blues points
PAPER TALK (by Harry Kettle): Barcelona eye Premier League duo
The Mirror is reporting that Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman is eager to try and sign Liverpool’s Georginio Wijnaldum and Manchester City’s Eric Garcia during the January transfer window.
The belief is that Barca may not have the cash necessary to force Liverpool or City to agree to a deal for either man, but Koeman has urged the board to try and make it a reality.
It’s been an uncertain start to the La Liga campaign for Barca, and while they do have a strong squad at their disposal, they do seem to be in the early stages of their re-development.
Koeman resigned to Messi exit next summer
The Mirror is also reporting that Koeman expects Lionel Messi to leave at the end of the season.
The future of the Argentina star has been a source of great discussion, and over the last few months, it genuinely seemed as if he’d be leaving the Nou Camp. He was heavily linked with Manchester City and a reunion with Pep Guardiola.
Barca fans were happy to see him hang around for this season but it does now appear as if it’ll only be for one more year with the club.
– Barcelona may try and sign Memphis Depay again in January after Koeman said he’d be interested the Netherlands man. During a recent interview with AD, Koeman kept the door open of bringing Depay over from Lyon, saying “that is certainly a possibility, yes. I will try, because I like to have him there.”
– Leeds United star Kalvin Phillips is set to spark a bidding war next summer, the Mirror reports. The 24-year-old has made a strong start to life in the Premier League with the Yorkshire club with Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur both being interested in securing his services. If they want to sign him, however, they’ll have to pay upwards of £50m.