FOOTBALL Sports News

A – Z of the 2018 January Transfer Window


Where else to start? Potentially the biggest Premier League transfer over the last few seasons. With the forward’s contract running out in the summer Arsenal made the decision to cash in on their star man. The 29- year-old joined Manchester United with Henrikh Mkhitaryan moving in the other direction, and made his debut against Yeovil Town in the FA Cup registering two assists. Sure to be a good move for the player.

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‘B’ig strikers

Chelsea have been searching high and low for a big striker this window as support for £75 million man Alvaro Morata. The club have made enquiries about a number of forwards over 6 ft 2 in this window including Andy Carroll, Islam Slimani, Ashley Barnes and even veteran Stoke striker Peter Crouch. But the striker most likely to make the move is Roma forward Edin Dzeko who has been linked with a £30 million move. Could still happen in the coming days.


By far the biggest move financially in the window at £146 million, the will-he–won’t-he finally ended this month when the midfielder moved to Barcelona from Liverpool. The Brazilian was courted by the Catalans about a move in the summer and even spoke publicly about his desire to move, but when the transfer failed to materialize he pushed for a move in this window. Signed as a possible replacement for club hero Andres Iniesta, the ‘little magician’ has a lot to live up to at his new side. He made his full debut for Barcelona against Alaves before being subbed off after enduring a difficult hour on the pitch, a slip being the highlight.



Mentioned earlier, the Roma hitman has scored 13 goals for his side this season. Two of which were against the Chelsea side linked with him in this window. The former Manchester City man has finally found a club where he is their main man after a stop-start time at City. But a striker with Premier League experience could be a great move for Antonio Conte’s side. Dzeko scored a fine volley against his potential new employers this year. But would he be interested in the move to London?

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Sam Allardyce has made major changes to his Everton squad since taking over after the sacking of Ronald Koeman earlier this season. The club have brought in Cenk Tosun from Beskitas for a fee of £27.5 million and also England winger Theo Walcott. The signing of these players is a major coup for Allardyce as both have experience in the Champions League and add extra attacking impetus to his side. Out the door though have gone Aaron Lennon and Kevin Mirallas who have completed moves to Burnley and Olympiakos respectively. Big Sam big mark ? The Ex – England manager is making his mark on Merseyside.

‘F’ree transfers

There a lot of players who are now free to discuss contract terms with other clubs due to the expiration of their contracts this summer. This is becoming a much more regular part of modern football. This year the highest-profile names in this category include Mesut Ozil of Arsenal, who has been linked with a move to Manchester United and a potential reunion with Sanchez at Old Trafford. Emre Can has been linked with a free transfer to Juventus from Liverpool, a move which will surely infuriate Jurgen Klopp. The last name to include would be Jack Wilshere who has had a major resurgence this season. Keeping the fan favourite is crucial to Arsene Wenger if he wants to keep his supporters happy.


The Frenchman has found game time a lot more difficult to come by this season after the signing of Alexandre Lacazette in the summer. Following the interest from Arsenal in Pierre Emerick – Aubameyang the 31 year-old may feel like his days in North London are numbered. Chelsea have been linked with the forward who has scored 105 goals for Arsene Wenger’s side.

‘H’enrikh Mkhitaryan

The other part of that huge Alexis Sanchez swap deal to Manchester United. The Armenian fell out of favour under Jose Mourinho at United and has been given a chance to restart his career at the Emirates. Wenger said of the midfielder “he has the qualities to integrate into our technical game, and he has a good team attitude. So I am confident it will work.” The deal is one which nearly happened four seasons ago when Mkhitaryan was at Borussia Dortmund but has the move come too late for him?

Mkhitaryan in training with new Arsenal team-mate Alexandre Lacazette.

‘I’slam Slimani

Islam Slimani is one of the stranger transfer stories of the window so far. One day being linked with a high-profile move to champions Chelsea, and the very next being on the verge of a move to struggling Newcastle. The striker has found it hard replicating the form that earned him a big-money move from Sporting Lisbon in 2016. The forward has also been linked with a move to Besiktas as the player’s agent claims he is “actively seeking a move from Leicester” in this window.

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‘J’onny Evans

Another one of the big names that has been linked with a big-money move in this window. Since signing for West Bromwich Albion from Manchester United for £6 million in August 2015, the defender has seen his stock rise, with Manchester City and Arsenal just two of the clubs vying for his signature. A move to either is unlikely in this window, however, with City looking at Aymeric Laporte and Wenger looking to bring in Aubameyang instead. This one could rumble on until the summer. Would the former United man move to City?


One of, if not the standout performer in the Premier League this season. His form has seen La Liga big guns – Real Madrid and Barcelona – take an interest, but the Belgian has since signed a new contract at Manchester City in a move Pep Guardiola said “was a great step for the club” with the announcement of the deal coming on the same day as United’s Sanchez confirmation. Playing under Guardiola has really allowed him to excel further, and there is sure to be a lot of people talking about him when his Belgium team line up against England at the World Cup this summer.


Aymeric Laporte has long been linked with a move from La Liga side Athletic Bilbao ever since his breakthrough season in 2013/14. With moves to Barcelona, Chelsea, and in the past, Manchester City failing to materialise over the last 4 years, it looks as though Guardiola has finally convinced the 23-year old Frenchman to make the move this window. The deal is due to be completed later this week before the deadline for a fee worth up to £55 million. The Frenchman’s ability on the ball and physical prowess makes him a great coup for City. But will he live up to the hefty price tag?

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Make no mistake about it, with Manchester City about to seal the deal for Laporte and Manchester United signing Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal, the two clubs from the north west have won the transfer window. Fantastic dealings from both sides have seen them sign top-class players who can be used in the next round of their Champions League campaigns due to the fact they are not cup-tied. The sides have reaffirmed their status as the two top teams in the country.

‘N’aby Keita

Liverpool attempted to accelerate their move for the RB Leipzig midfielder in the wake of Coutinho’s move to Barcelona. The all-action Guinea international’s form has dipped this season since he secured his £48 million deal last year. The German club have insisted he stays until the summer.


BBC reporter David Ornstein has become a legendary Twitter figure due to his accurate reporting of Arsenal’s transfer dealings. ‘Orny’ as he is affectionately referred to by his followers has established himself as the most reliable source on the club. The replies to his tweets are, too, a thing of beauty.

‘P’ierre Emerick-Aubameyang

Auba has been linked with a move away from Borussia Dortmund for a couple of windows now and it seems that he will finally leave the club. The Gabon striker looks set to join Arsenal in one of the biggest moves of the window for a fee rumoured to be around £60m. His 98 goals in 144 appearances for the German side have earned him the reputation as one of Europe’s deadliest marksmen and will provide Arsene Wenger with huge firepower to fill the void left by Alexis Sanchez.

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‘Q’uincy Promes

Player of the Year in Russia Quincy Promes has been locked in talks with Southampton over a potential deal. The pacey winger, who can also operate as a striker, has four caps for the Netherlands and has scored over 50 goals for Spartak Moscow. His signing would provide the Saints with a much-needed goal threat.


Super-agent Mino Raiola found himself at the centre of the Sanchez/Mkhitaryan saga and played a role in slowing it down and ensuring that his client, Mkhitaryan, got the best deal. He even boldly declared that ‘Sanchez was part of the Mkhitaryan deal’ despite everyone else in the football world thinking otherwise.

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Andre Silva hit headlines in early January when the Portuguese striker was linked with an extraordinary move to Championship leaders Wolves. The AC Milan player was rumoured to be subject of a £34.7 million bid from West Midlands side. A deal, however, did not go through but the Wolves fans were again reminded of just how far they’ve come.

‘T’om Cairney

The 27 year-old Scottish midfielder looked to have finally earned his move to the Premier League when West Ham seemed close to securing a deal for him. However, Fulham have stood firm and their demands of £30 million have scared off the Hammers and Cairney looks set to stay until the summer.


There have been some high-profile unveiling in this window with a lot of players making moves to other Premier League sides. From Theo Walcott to Everton, Ross Barkley joining Chelsea on the cheap and Van Dijk moving to Merseyside. This window hasn’t seen unveiling videos on the scale of Besiktas’ campaign last summer, but Alexis Sanchez’s signing for Manchetser United did come close.

‘V’irgil van Djik

Liverpool finally got their man at the start of January. The Dutch defender joined the Merseysiders for a club-record £75 million. Van Dijk is the sixth player to move from Southampton to Liverpool in five years and is expected to solve Jurgen Klopp’s defensive woes.

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Walcott left Arsenal after 12 years of service, making 270 appearances during that time. After struggling for game time in Arsene Wenger’s team, he moved to Everton to increase his minutes before this year’s World Cup.

‘X’ Malcom X

Brazilian youngster Malcom dominated the early January rumour mill with Arsenal and Tottenham both interested. The Bordeaux winger has already scored seven goals this season, making a summer move to a big club extremely likely. The winger was also at the centre of a diving storm following his side’s match with Lyon which they won 3-1. The 20-year old appeared to dive to win his side a penalty in the match. But with unquestionable talent will he be on the move now or will it roll on into the summer?

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‘Y’oung guns

Sixteen-year-old Pietro Pellegri joined Monaco from Genoa for a monstrous £17.1 million, despite only playing 10 competitive games. The move is a risk from the French side but it could be one that pays off massively in the years to come if Pellegri develops well.


The Swedish legend looks set to wrap up his illustrious career in America. Reports are linking Ibrahimovic with a move to LA Galaxy, as his time at Manchester United looks to be coming to an end. Long live the king!

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