Transfer Roundup: David Luiz back to Benfica, Fellaini to Milan and Juve offer Benatia to Arsenal
It’s time for yet another transfer roundup. With still over two weeks left in the January transfer window, let’s take a look at some of the rumours that are going around.
David Luiz back to Portugal?
With 6 months remaining on his Chelsea contract, David Luiz has reportedly opened talks with former club Benfica over a return to the Estádio da Luz.
Various sources have reported the 31 year old is considering going back to the Liga NOS, where he made 132 appearances for the Águias over 5 years. The Brazilian’s second stint at Stamford Bridge has been successful since his return in 2016, winning the Premier League and FA Cup over the last two seasons.
Despite being a first team regular under Maurizio Sarri this season with 26 appearances in all competitions, reports suggest the Chelsea hierarchy are opting against extending the former PSG defender’s contract. Could this be a loss for Chelsea?
Milan target Fellaini
After Jose Mourinho’s sacking in December, Marouane Fellaini’s five year stay at Manchester United (even we can’t believe he has lasted that long) could end this January.
Reports suggest AC Milan have ‘revived their interest’ in the 6ft 4in midfielder after their unsuccessful attempt to sign him on a free last summer. The Belgian international was a favourite of Mourinho, frequently used as an impact substitute or a starter during a time where the Portuguese wasn’t scared to drop his best players (just ask Paul Pogba).
Despite recently signing a new two-year contract, The Red Devils may be willing to let him go, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer only giving him a handful of minutes since his appointment. As a result, the Rossoneri may not have to pay a huge fee to take him to the San Siro.
Ramsey to Juventus, Benatia going the other way?
Juventus are eager to fast-track the Ramsey transfer to January and look like they’re willing to try anything and everything to make it happen. That includes offering one of their star central defenders in a swap deal that’d see Medhi Benatia bolster Arsenal’s brittle defence, and Aaron Ramsey joins the Bianconeri six-months early.
What does Benatia offer?
Experience. Not as though they’re lacking. Both Sokratis and Koscielny are both now into their 30s but Benatia would perhaps offer, not only Champions League quality at the back, but also some guile and some brains.
The Moroccan has averaged 3.2 interceptions this season and he is more than comfortable at stepping out and collecting the ball. Furthermore, he offers midfielder-like quality in his passes, playing five long balls at a 90% success rate.
The worry for Arsenal could be that they’re adding another 30+ defender to their ranks, someone that could wake up one morning and ‘no longer have it’. It’s a risk, but will Unai Emery be willing to take it?
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