Premier League: Newcastle v Wolves

After losing two in a row to teams in the top five, Newcastle hope to return to winning ways when Wolves visit St James’ Park on Saturday night.

Newcastle’s recent run has saw them slip closer to the relegation zone than anyone would have liked, with Fulham’s improvement meaning the gap is just three points going into the game.

Wolves have enjoyed a turnaround of late, and have won three of their last four league games. The most recent of which came at home to Leeds courtesy of Adama Traore’s thunderstrike, which cannoned in off the back of Illan Meslier in the Whites goal.

That win combined with the 2-1 success at Southampton leave Wolves still in with a real chance of finishing in the top ten, and they could climb into ninth if other results favour them this weekend.

Newcastle boss Steve Bruce has struggled without Callum Wilson since he suffered a hamstring injury, and the former Bournemouth man is not fit to face Wolves, with next week’s clash with West Brom a more likely comeback date.

There’s better news in defence for the Magpies, as Federico Fernandez is expected to be fit after a thigh injury. Paul Dummett is also available and rumoured to be challenging Jamal Lewis for the nod at left-back.

At right-back, Javier Manquillo isn’t yet fit as he recovers from a badly twisted ankle, so Emil Krafth will continue there, and Fabian Schar’s season is over after suffering a bad knee injury in the win over Southampton.

Bruce must decide which of his attacking options is best suited for the challenge of Nuno Espirito Santo’s side, with neither Dwight Gayle or Joelinton particularly impressing against Chelsea or Man United. That could mean a rare start for Andy Carroll, who is enjoying an injury-free season so far.

The mood around Wolves’ training ground this week was massively boosted by the return to light training of Raul Jimenez, who hasn’t been seen since suffering a fractured skull against Arsenal last year. The Mexican hopes to return before the end of the season, but is understandably taking things slowly.

Diminutive forward Daniel Podence is also missing for Wolves as he continues to recover from a groin injury, while defensive pair Willy Boly and Fernando Marcal will also miss out with problems.

On-loan striker Willian Jose should continue up front with impressive winger Pedro Neto, who has contributed to nine goals in what is proving to be a breakthrough season.

If Newcastle can stop those two and grind out a win, it could give them some much needed comfort at the bottom of the table, with Fulham set to overtake them on Sunday should they beat Crystal Palace and Newcastle lose to Wolves.

Squeaky bum time for Steve Bruce.

Newcastle take on Wolves at St James’ Park on Saturday, February 27th. Kick-off is at 8pm.

Premier League: Wolves v Leeds

Both sides have been in mixed form of late, with Nuno Espirito Santo’s side picking up eight points from their last six Premier League games, one point less than Marcelo Bielsa’s topsy-turvy Leeds.

The Whites’ form matches their philosophy of late, with three wins and three defeats reflecting the all-or-nothing nature that has won the Yorkshire side plenty of fans and critics during their first season back in the top flight in 16 years.

There was talk from some corners of burnout affecting the second half of their season, but sitting 11th, two points behind Arsenal going into this game is something any newly-promoted side would be thrilled with.

Wolves have turned around their recent slump of late, and are unbeaten in three league games, a run that has helped ease the pressure after they went eight games without a win through December and January.

The introduction of Willian Jose has been important to the Midlands side, who now have a focal point in the mould of Raul Jimenez to lead their line. The Mexican hopes to make a playing return before the end of the season after his horrific head injury suffered against Arsenal earlier this season.

Also on the sidelines for Wolves are defender Willy Boly, who has a thigh injury, and forward Daniel Podence, who is expected to be out for another month with a thigh problem.

Leeds are no strangers to injuries this season, and once again will lineup with only one recognised centre-back in Liam Cooper. Robin Koch and Diego Llorente have both been injured almost entirely since signing in the summer and miss out again, as Pascal Struijk or Luke Ayling continue in the heart of defence.

Gaetano Berardi, Ian Poveda, Adam Forshaw and Rodrigo are all missing as well for Leeds, while midfield pair Kalvin Phillips and Mateusz Klich are rated at 50-50.

A win for Leeds will take them above Arsenal into the top ten once again, while Nuno Santo’s side can leapfrog Friday’s opponents should they take the points.

Wolves take on Leeds at Molineux on Friday, February 19th. Kick-off is at 8pm.

Nine-man Arsenal self-destruct at Wolves

It was Joao Moutinho’s stunning 30-yard strike that sealed victory for the hosts but it was 9-man Arsenal’s self-destruction and capitulation in front of goal that saw the London team miss out on the spoils.

The visitors had virtually total control of the first half and could have had the game out of sight early doors with Bukayo Saka hitting the post and having a goal ruled out by VAR for offside.

However, they only had a solo effort from Nicolas Pepe to show for their efforts.

Pepe winning the ball off Semedo in the Wolves half leaving the defender in a heap before nutmegging Ruben Neves and lashing a low shot across Patricio and into the bottom corner of the goal.

Arteta would have no doubt been pleased to have seen his team’s superiority bear fruit but would have been equally dismayed with what happened in first-half stoppage time.

David Luiz was judged to have clipped debutant Willian Jose in the area as he raced on to collect Daniel Podence’s pass. It was careless of Luiz who was struggling to recover his position but there was clearly no intent to bring down the player. None the less referee Craig Pawson deemed the non-challenge worthy of the 3rd red card of Luiz’s short Arsenal career. Neves stepped up to take the resulting penalty and fired high past Leno to bring the teams in level at the break.

Gabriel replaced Lacazette at half time to sure up he Gunners backline but it also blunted their attack and it was Moutinho who put the midlands side in front just four minutes after the restart.

The midfielder had not scored at Molineux since he joined from Monaco in 2018 but ended that drought in emphatic style with a fierce drive that Leno could do nothing about as it flew in off the post.

From here Wolves were in control as 10-man Arsenal struggled to capture the form of recent weeks.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang came off the bench but made no impact and the Gunners imploded as Leno was sent off with 18 minutes left.

The keeper raced out of his area to get to a ball before Adama Traore, misjudged the pace and bounce and inexplicably palmed it out of play – resulting in a far less disputed red card than Luiz’ earlier dismissal.

Runar Runarsson came on in net replacing Partey and saved Arsenal from more misery, beating away late shots from Neves and Pedro Neto.

The defeat ended Arsenal’s seven-match unbeaten run and dented their attempts to catch the Premier League’s top five, leaving them four points adrift whilst Wolves picked up just their second win in twelve games to ease any potential relegation worries.

Eberechi Eze secures crucial 1-0 Crystal Palace win over Wolves

The Eagles have won just once in Premier League action in 2021 but Eberechi Eze’s second half strike has dumped more misery on Nuno Santo.

Neither side were able to create anything resembling a chance in a poor opening 45, with both keepers taking the weekend off.

That limpness in front of goal continued again after the break with Willian Jose’s poor effort barely testing Vicente Guaita.

But just as he has done a few times already this season the explosiveness of Eze suddenly sparked Palace into life as he lashed home Jordan Ayew’s pass.

That rocket did open things up at both ends in the closing stages as Pedro Neto and Jose tested Guaita and Wilf Zaha clipped one off the bar.

But despite throwing everything at in the last 10, Wolves were unable to scrap out a point.

Full Time from Selhurst Park it’s Crystal Palace 1 Wolves 0

Premier League: Crystal Palace v Wolves

Crystal Palace welcome Wolves to Selhurst Park on Saturday afternoon, in a clash between two teams who can’t seem to pick up any momentum so far this season.

The form book reflects both sides’ struggles at the halfway stage, with Palace winning just one of their last five league games, against bottom side Sheffield United, which is one more than Wolves have managed.

In fact, Wolves’ most recent win came in the FA Cup against Crystal Palace, with Adama Traore smashing in a wonder goal to send the Midlands side through to the fourth round.

Roy Hodgson has no new injury worries ahead of the game, with James Tomkins, Wayne Hennessey, Mamadou Sakho, Connor Wickham, Jeffrey Schlupp and Nathan Ferguson all out with injuries.

New loan signing Jean-Philippe Mateta could make his debut up front, as Palace look for a solution to their goal scoring problems. Strikers Christian Benteke, Jordan Ayew and Michy Batshuayi have managed just five goals between them all season, as Wilfried Zaha carries most of the attacking responsibility, netting nine times.

Nuno Espirito Santo may also start a new striker for the first time, as Willian Jose pushes to be included after joining on loan from Real Sociedad. The 29-year-old Brazilian made his debut from the bench against Chelsea earlier this week, producing a vital header to prevent Kai Havertz from scoring in injury time.

Wolves are without Rayan Ait-Nouri, Fernando Marcal and Raul Jimenez, while Jonny Otto is back on the field after a knee injury, but not available.

Both sides are hoping to pull away from each other with a win, as they sit locked on 23 points after 20 games. On the other hand, they’re both in danger of being overtaken by Burnley should they lose and the Clarets pick up an unlikely victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Crystal Palace take on Wolves at Selhurst Park on Saturday, January 30th. Kick-off is at 3pm.

Wolves on course to sign Real Sociedad striker

Although no deal has yet been agreed between Wolves and the La Liga club, the player himself is said to have turned down a move to Atletico Madrid in order to pursue a career in the Premier League.

With Raul Jimenez’s injury leaving Wanderers light upfront, manager Nuno Espirito Santo has had to rely on 18-year-old record signing Fabio Silva to plug the gaps – a big task for the teenager which has been difficult to execute.

Therefore, it is no real surprise that 14th placed Wolves are in the market for a new forward whilst Jimenez steps up his recovery from a fractured skull.

An agreement to bring the Sociedad man to Molineux is set to be finalised today, according to Noticias de Gipuzkoa, as translated by website Sport Witness.

Several other Spanish outlets have claimed the only real catch in the deal is an agreeable fee -surprise surprise.

The latest as things stand is that a loan deal is set to be sanctioned with Wolves wanting an option to buy at the end of it and Sociedad wanting an obligation to buy.

That, along with the price of the player is what is allegedly ruffling feathers. Sociedad want £25m, Wolves won’t pay more than £20m.

Despite this, it seems that a deal will be thrashed out sooner rather than later, and Willian Jose will end up at Molineux; what the terms of the deal are though remains to be seen.

Wanderers take on non-league side Chorley in the FA Cup 4th round on Friday night.

Transfer Blog: Fulham & Everton battle over Josh King.

Josh King on the move | 1st Feb 2021 22:30 | Jim Salveson

Just under 30mins left of the window but still maybe one more move to go in the Premier League. Bournemouth striker Josh King has been linked with a number of clubs since Manchester United had a deadline day bid rejected in the January 2020 window and now he may finally get his move. Reports are that Everton (having offloaded Cenk Tosun) and Fulham are both keen on the Norway international for a fee that COULD be as low as £5million. Cheap as Norwegian chips (or pommes frites as they call them).

Josh King could be heading back to the Premier League with Everton or Fulham.

Cenk Tosun leaves Everton | 1st Feb 2012 18:24 | Jim Salveson

Some Everton supporters may be surprised that Cenk Tosun was still at the club given is lack of action in the last few years but the Turkish striker has finally got his move away. He is heading back to his home country with Besiktas where he will hope to do slightly better than the 9 goals he got on Merseyside. Its a loan deal so the Toffee’s will have to wait to recoup any of the £27million they paid for the forward 3 years ago.

DONE DEAL: West Brom sign Yokuslu | 1st Feb 2021 18:15 | Jim Salveson

West Brom’s new signing should be “Okay” in the Premier League… get it? Turkish international midfielder Okay Yokuslu is only the SECOND deal of the day in the Premier League and joins up with Big Sam in the midlands on a loan deal until the end of the season. He moves from Celta Vigo where he has made 14 appearances this season. In true Allardyce style he’s a defensive player, tough in the tackle and can also fill in at Centre Back.

Big Sam has strengthened his relegation threatened squad. (Image: PA)

DEAL DONE: Brighton sign promising Ecuador midfielder Caicedo | 1st Feb 2021 17:30 | Jim Salveson

EVERYONE has been talking about where Ecuadorian midfielder Moises Caicedo would end up this window (ok, maybe not everyone) and it turns out he’s heading to the South Coast. The 19-year-old is one for the future but Graham Potter has said he has no intention of loaning out his new addition after he signed from Independiente del Valle for a deal around the £4million mark.

Liverpool in for double defensive reinforcements | 1st Feb 2021 14:20 | Jim Salveson

Liverpool are 100% on the hunt for some defensive back-up this window. Ben Davies has reportedly completed his medical and is poised to complete his £2million move to Merseyside but Jurgen Klopp isn’t stopping there. The Reds are also targeting a deadline day move for Ozan Kabak from Shalke on loan for a fee of £2.5m with options to buy. Sky Sports are also reporting that should the deal go through then Arsenal’s Shkodran Mustafi could be heading to Germany as a replacement. You’ve got to wonder why Liverpool left it till Deadline Day to do these deals when their issues at the back have been clear all month?

Parrott back to Spurs (for a bit) | 1st Feb 2021 14:00 | Jim Salveson

Troy Parrott has been re-called to Tottenham from Millwall where he was on loan. He wont be getting the nod as a stand in for the injured Harry Kane though as he’s been sent straight out again to League One Ipswich. Ok, its not the biggest story but maybe this Deadline Day isn’t going to be a classic!Troy Parrott has been recalled from a loan spell at Millwall and has been sent out on loan to League One side, Ipswich.

Leicester are 50/50 to make a new signing | 1st Feb 13:55 | Jim Salveson

Don’t hold your breath for any new arrivals Foxes! Brendan Rodgers says it is 50/50 as to wether he’ll get any new faces into the club today. If he doesn’t get the midfield player(s) he’s after its likely that Hamza Choudhury’s proposed move to Newcastle will be OFF.

Maitland-Niles heading to West Ham | 29th Jan 2021 9:00 | Jim Salveson

Ainsley Maitland-Niles could be heading to East London according to The Athletic. The Arsenal man is keen on game time ahead of the Euros and is looking for a potential loan move for the rest of the season. Reports suggest that whilst West Brom have also registered an interest a “current top 4 team” is also after the England internationals short-term signature. Prior to Liverpool’s win over Spurs last night those Top 4 teams were: Manchester United, City Leicester and West Ham with the latter feeling like the most logical destination. If David Moyes was to complete the deal he would need to first tie up Craig Dawson (currently on loan from Watford) on a permanent deal to free up space for a second domestic loan.

Arsenal’s Ainsley Maitland-Niles is looking for game time ahead of the Euro’s.

Edin Dzeko wants Manchester return | 29th Jan 2021 08:45 | Jim Salveson

Want-away Roma striker Edin Dzeko is keen on a return to the Premier League and is eyeing up a move to his old stomping ground of Manchester. Italian paper Corriere Dello Sport (via Team Talk) are reporting Bosnian would love to return to the City in which he won 5 trophies between 2011 and 2015 and is being offered to both Red and Blue halves of the City. It’s unlikely however that either club will show an interest with Inter Milan the most likely destination for the 34-year-old.

Solskjaer surprised at any Manchester United incomings | 27th Jan 2021 16:37 | Niall McCaughan

Being one of the biggest clubs in the world, naturally Manchester United dominate the back page transfer columns. However it’s been a quiet one this January for United, with only Amad Diallo coming in on a pre-agreed switch from Atalanta. Boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has suggested any further additions are unlikely, but there are expected to be some departures from Old Trafford. Tim Fosu-Mensah has already left the club, whilst Marcos Rojo has been told he can leave. Brandon Williams is said to be attracting Premier League interest, but the most speculations surrounds the future of Jesse Lingard. West Ham are allegedly in pole position to sign the midfielder on loan and after their permanent capture of Said Benrahma, they should be able to facilitate the move.

Max Ex-Palace man Meyer takes massive pay cut in return to Bundesliga | 27th Jan 2021 15:30 | Niall McCaughan

Max Meyer had his Crystal Palace contract terminated earlier this month and so was free to find a new club. The midfielder has returned to Germany by signing for Bundesliga strugglers FC Koln. We know Palace pay massive wages to their players and Cologne have even said themselves Meyer has taken a significant pay drop to help them fight relegation. Good luck to the lad.

Max Meyer has departed Crystal Palace this transfer window. Photo: PA

West Ham to set to make Benrahma deal permanent | 27th Jan 2021 15:25 | Niall McCaughan

West Ham look like they are going to turn Said Benrahma’s loan deal from Brentford in to a permanent one. The Algeria international is currently on a season-long loan from the Championship side, and reports claim the Hammers are keen to keep hold of the player who has only turned out 10 times in the Premier League for David Moyes this season. The fee is hefty (as you’d expect for West Ham) but Benrahma did light things up for the Bees last season and he no doubt has bags of talent. There was a fight for the 25-year-old’s signature in the summer, so the Hammers will be pleased with this.

Jose Mourinho expecting Spurs stay for Dele Alli | 27th Jan 2021 15:18 | Niall McCaughan

Jose Mourinho has been speaking in his pre-match press conference ahead of Thursday’s Premier League clash with Liverpool and the Spurs boss was asked about the future of Dele Alli. Mourinho has barely used the midfielder this season and Alli is being strongly linked with a move to PSG, where former Tottenham gaffer Mauricio Pochettino is now in charge. However, Jose swiftly swatted any suggestions of a Dele departure by claiming he doesn’t expect any incomings or outgoings between now and the closure of the window. Spurs do love a late deal though, don’t they…

Angel Di Maria heading back to the Premier League? | 27th Jan 2021 09:23 | Jim Salveson

Tottenham have made an approach to bring former Manchester United winger Angel Di Maria back to the Premier League according to L’Equipe in France (here’s the link if you can speak French!). The Argentine is currently playing his football with PSG where he has won four Ligue 1 titles since his ill-fated spell in Manchester. Jose Mourinho is reportedly keen on the player who could form part of a swap deal with Dele Alli going the other way.

Angel di Maria did not enjoy his time at Old Trafford but could be heading back to the Premier League with Tottenham (photo: PA)

West Ham leading race to land Jesse Lingard | 26th Jan 2021 17:51 | Niall McCaughan

Ah, Jesse Lingard. The 28-year-old that everyone thinks is 23 looks likely to leave Old Trafford before the start of next season. There are conflicting reports over whether Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is willing to allow Lingard to leave in January however. The midfielder has only played 3 games for Manchester United this season, the most recent of which coming earlier this month in an FA Cup 3rd round win over Watford. If a loan move this month is to be the way things pan out, suggestions that West Ham will be the likely destination are gaining traction. Sheffield United have also been mooted in the past, as have Newcastle – but with the way things are going at the London Stadium for the Hammers right now, that certainly seems a more attractive move.

DONE DEAL: Aston Villa confirm Sanson | 26th Jan 2021 17:38 | Niall McCaughan

In probably the only real interesting bit of news so far this window, the pursuit of Marseille’s Morgan Sanson has finally paid off for Aston Villa. The midfielder has signed a four-and-a-half year deal at Villa Park for an undisclosed fee from the Ligue 1 side, subject to international clearance. There were some doubts last week over the deal, but the French international has now agreed terms. Welcome to the Premier League, Morgan!

Morgan Sanson poses with the Aston Villa shirt after completing his switch from Marseille. Photo: Twitter/Aston Villa

DONE DEAL: Sokratis signs for Olympiacos as Ozil completes Fener switch | 25th Jan 2021 09:46 | Niall McCaughan

One of the stories coming out of the Emirates Stadium last week was that defender Sokratis Papastathopolos had his Arsenal contract cancelled by mutual consent. As such, he was free to find another club – and it looks like he is on the verge of doing so already. According to Sky Italy, Sokratis is set to return to his native Greece and sign for Athens-based side Olympiacos. 350 miles away in Istanbul meanwhile, Mesut Ozil has officially signed with Fenerbahce after finally leaving the Gunners – although there appears to be some mad rumours surrounding the deal, like Fenerbahce reportedly asking fans to donate money via text message in order to pay Ozil’s wages. Ah, the Turkish league.

Mesut Ozil poses with a Fenerbahce scarf after completing his move from Arsenal. Photo: Instagram/Mesut Ozil

DONE DEAL: Aston Villa finally snaffle Sanson | 25th Jan 2021 09:38 | Niall McCaughan

Good morning! I hope you had a top weekend. Plenty of transfer activity to digest over the weekend, including Aston Villa allegedly agreeing terms with Marseille over the transfer of Morgan Sanson. We reported last week that the deal seemed to have hit a roadblock due to an issue over price, but several high-profile sources are now reporting that Sanson will be a Premier League player by the end of the window. He is due for a medical at Aston Villa’s Bodymoor Heath training ground in the next couple of says, so providing he gets through that with no issues (and those pesky Brexit papers are sorted in time) then Dean Smith will have got his man.

DONE DEAL: Chelsea’s Tomori completes AC Milan switch | 22nd Jan 2021 18:13 | Niall McCaughan

Fikayo Tomori has completed his medical today and has now officially joined AC Milan on loan from Chelsea. As we wrote earlier this week, the defender will link up with the Serie A leaders til the end of the season with an option to buy. Even without fans, the San Siro – despite it’s dilapidated state these days – is a great place to play your football.

Everton striker Cenk Tosun top of West Brom wishlist | 22nd Jan 2021 14:19 | Niall McCaughan

Cenk Tosun’s agent has been talking up a move to the Hawthorns in the Turkish press this week. Tosun has had a rotten time at Goodison Park, with injuries and the form of Dominic-Calvert Lewin keeping him out of the side. In fact, this isn’t the first time he’s been tipped for a move away. The Everton striker is said to be top of Big Sam’s January shopping list at West Brom as they look to stave off relegation. Allardyce was the man who brought Tosun to England when he was Everton boss in 2018, and that is believed to be a major factor in West Brom’s pursuit of the Turkey international. We also mentioned earlier this week that Tosun’s international teammate Okay Yokuslu is catching the Baggies’ eye. You can read more about that potential move here.

West Ham open to lowering Declan Rice asking price | 22nd Jan 2021 13:34 | Niall McCaughan

West Ham slapped an £80m price on the head of star midfielder Declan Rice in the summer, but according to 90min, the Hammers are prepared to lower that to £50m. This is allegedly due to the financial impact of Covid-19, but seeing as Rice has improved this season and is only 22 years of age, it seems a strange thing to consider from the West Ham board. Rice has been linked with Chelsea and Manchester United in recent times, and of course he’s English, which is a great excuse to throw on a few extra quid to the asking price. It’s really unlikely that he’ll leave the London Stadium this month, but whether he is a Hammers player this time next year, who knows.

West Ham have handed Declan Rice the captaincy this season, and the Hammers have improved massively from games like this against Leicester last campaign. Photo: Tim Goode/PA Wire

Wolves want Brazilian forward Willian Jose | 22nd Jan 2021 13:01 | Niall McCaughan

Wolverhampton Wanderers are reportedly deep in negotiations with Real Sociedad over the transfer of striker Willian Jose. Scoring goals has been difficult for Wolves since Raul Jimenez got injured, with 18-year-old record signing Fabio Silva probably a little too green to fill the Mexican’s shoes. As such, it’s no real surprise Nuno Espirito Santo is in the market for reinforcements upfront. There are complications with this deal, which you can read about here, but currently the Brazilian is likely to be on his way to Molineux after snubbing Atletico Madrid for a chance in the Premier League.

Marcos Rojo to leave Manchester United | 22nd Jan 2021 13:01 | Niall McCaughan

Marcos Rojo has been at Manchester United for almost 7 years, but now his stay at Old Trafford is up. The defender, who hasn’t even managed 100 Premier League appearances in his time at the club, will join Boca Juniors in his native Argentina before the end of the month. In December he was allegedly offered to Sheffield United after spending time on loan at Estudiantes for the first half of the season, but he is so out-of-favour at United that boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer told him not to bother coming back to England. Ouch.

Arsenal sign Brighton goalkeeper Mat Ryan | 22nd Jan 2021 11:49 | Marley Anderson

Arsenal have signed goalkeeper Mat Ryan from Brighton on loan for the rest of the season. The Aussie had been replaced recently at Brighton by Robert Sanchez, and with Graham Potter handing a new deal to Jason Steele, that was a clear sign that they were happy to let Ryan leave. The 28-year-old has played over 100 times for Brighton in the Premier League, so will add experience to the ranks, and will wear the number 33 shirt at the club he says he supported as a child.

Everton eye swoop for Bayern Munich forward | 22nd Jan 2021 10:49 | Niall McCaughan

Yesterday, Sport Social’s Marley Anderson highlighted that the German press are reporting Everton’s interest in young Bayern Munich striker Joshua Zirkzee. The 19-year-old has struggled to get game time ahead of Robert Lewandowski (who wouldn’t?!) and is said to be open to a move. Carlo Ancelotti could orchestrate a deal for the Dutchman as much needed back-up to Dominic Calvert-Lewin, but the Bundesliga side are supposedly only willing to do a loan deal.

Southampton manager confident of Danny Ings stay | 22nd Jan 2021 10:36 | Niall McCaughan

On yesterday’s Football Social Daily podcast, we discussed the ongoing tussle between Danny Ings and Southampton over a new deal. Ings wants to stay – but he’s concerned over the size of the release clause in the new deal that has been offered to him. Saints are willing to make the striker their highest paid player of all time, but the 30-year-old is hesitant to sign because of that hefty release clause – something which may scupper a move to a big club in future. Despite this, Ralph Hasenhuttl is confident that player and club can overcome their differences.

Southampton’s Danny Ings is unsure over whether to commit to a new deal at the club. Photo: PA

Aston Villa hit snag in Morgan Sanson pursuit | 21st Jan 2021 15:48 | Niall McCaughan

Morgan Sanson, the Marseille midfielder, has been on the radar of Aston Villa this transfer window. Burnley have also been interested in the past, but Villa have been leading the way as of late – but a potential move appears to have hit a roadblock. Marseille want more than the £15m Villa have offered. Fair enough for a French international. There’s still 10 days of the window to go, but nobody is too sure if Villa will return with an improved bid.

DONE DEAL: Jean-Philippe Mateta to Crystal Palace | 21st Jan 2021 09:40 | Jim Salveson

As we mentioned yesterday, Crystal Palace have snapped up Jean-Philippe Mateta on loan from Mainz, which has finally been announced by the club. The Frenchman has scored 7 goals so far this term in the Bundesliga and has joined the Eagles on an 18-month loan deal, subject to international clearance. The Evening Standard are reporting that Palace do have an obligation to make the deal permanent at the end of the loan with a fee of £13million agreed – something we also picked up yesterday for you. Roy Hodgson’s side have only scored 22 goals so far this season so they’ll be hoping Mateta will provide much needed firepower.

Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson has been keen to add to his attacking options (PA/ Peter Powell)

Wolves bring in attacking option | 20th Jan 2021 19:47 | Jim Salveson

Nuno Espirito Santo has bolstered the Wolverhampton Wanderers attack with a loan deal for Real Sociedad’s Willian Jose. Jose has bagged 60 goals in 169 La Liga appearances and The Daily Mail are reporting that Wolves have an option to make the deal permanent should all go well in the West Midlands. Wanderers have looked short of goals since the injury to Raul Jimenez earlier in the season and Santo will hope that Jose can provide another option to record signing Fabio Silva who has struggled to find the net since his move to Molineux in the summer.

Arsenal make second approach for Odegaard | 20th Jan 2021 19:39 | Jim Salveson

Mikel Arteta is keen on brining Norwegian attacking midfielder Martin Odegaard to the Emirates and has gone back to Real Madrid with a second offer according to Sky Sports. The player is expecting to leave the Spanish giants this Transfer Window in search of first team football but Real don’t want to lose the talented youngster on the cheap despite him only costing them around £2.7million from  Stromgodset back in 2015. Arsenal are facing stiff competition for his signature however including interest from at least one other Premier League club.

Sayonara Sokratis as defender’s Arsenal contract cancelled | 20th Jan 2021 15:43 | Niall McCaughan

There has been a flurry of transfer activity at Arsenal this week, with sporting director Edu and manager Mikel Arteta looking to rearrange the Gunners squad. They haven’t pulled any punches either, with Sokratis Papastathopolous (that’s tough to type) the latest to be shown the Emirates exit door. The Greek defender has had his contract cancelled by mutual consent, meaning he is now free to find another club as and when he pleases. Sokratis’ last game was the FA Cup final win over Chelsea – not a bad way to go out. Elsewhere, Mesut Ozil is set to finalise his Fenerbahce move on Friday after a period of self-isolation in Turkey, whilst William Saliba and Sead Kolasinac have been loaned out.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has been keen to move on those players surplus to requirements at the Emirates Stadium. Photo: PA

Mainz man Mateta heading for Crystal Palace | 20th Jan 2021 15:29 | Niall McCaughan

Bundesliga club Mainz has been the home of some top talent in the past. Liverpool gaffer Jurgen Klopp cut his teeth there and Sadio Mane also got a Premier League switch off the back of some impressive displays. Now Crystal Palace have plundered the German side of striker Jean-Philippe Mateta, who signs a loan deal at Selhurst Park with an option to buy. Palace have had their eye on the Frenchman for some time, expressing interest in the forward in previous windows, but now look to have finally got their man. This one hasn’t been officially confirmed by either club as yet but transfer guru Fabrizio Romano says it’s a done deal – which is good enough for us!

Aston Villa closing in on Morgan Sanson deal | 20th Jan 2021 15:18 | Niall McCaughan

With just over 10 days left of the transfer window, things are finally starting to hot up. Over the past week or so Aston Villa have been strongly linked with Marseille midfielder Morgan Sanson, and it looks like they are close to getting their man. With Conor Hourihane’s loan departure to Swansea yesterday freeing up some room in Dean Smith’s midfield, the France international could well swap Ligue 1 for the Premeir League. Burnley have also been interested in the 26-year-old in the past, but we will be surprised if Sanson’s destination is anywhere other than Villa Park.

Sheffield United in a fight to land Jesse Lingard | 19th Jan 2021 16:27 | Niall McCaughan

Jesse Lingard has only played 3 times for Manchester United this season, so naturally the rumours surrounding his Old Trafford future are swirling. The Blades are reportedly interested in taking Lingard as they battle to stave off relegation, but as Sport Social’s Marley Anderson writes, Tottenham have now entered the race for his signature. Could Lingard be tempted to link up with former boss Jose Mourinho?

Manchester United’s Jesse Lingard – is he on his way to Spurs? Photo: Martin Rickett/PA Wire.

Spurs youngster Harvey White joins Pompey on loan | 19th Jan 2021 14:01 | Niall McCaughan

One of the smaller deals that took place yesterday was Tottenham’s 19-year-old midfielder Harvey White joining Portsmouth on loan. White made an impressive first start for Spurs in their recent FA Cup game with non-league Marine, and links up with the League One side to gain valuable first team experience with Pompey currently in with a shout of automatic promotion to the Championship.

Hourihane heading for Aston Villa exit door | 19th Jan 2021 12:33 | Niall McCaughan

We wrote yesterday about a number of promotion-chasing Championship sides being keen on Aston Villa midfielder Conor Hourihane. Well now it looks like Swansea City have won the race for the Republic of Ireland international, with a loan deal until the end of the season looking most likely. Hourihane hasn’t played for Villa in the Premier League since November and AFC Bournemouth were another side interested in his services, but after the Cherries signed free agent Jack Wilshere yesterday there was no real need for them to bring in the Irishman.

West Brom keen on Turkey international | 19th Jan 2021 10:02 | Niall McCaughan

West Brom may have secured a huge three points against rivals Wolves last time out, but defensive worries continue to be of concern for the Baggies. Despite them having conceded the most goals in the Premier League this season, it is in fact a midfielder who they have been linked with over the last 24 hours rather than defensive reinforcements. Albion are said to be in talks with Celta Vigo’s Turkish international Okay Yokuşlu, according to the player’s agent. You can hear more about West Brom’s pursit of the La Liga man here.

West Ham turn to Spain for Haller replacement | 19th Jan 2021 09:30 | Jim Salveson

West Ham continue to be linked to seemingly every striker in Europe as they search for a replacement for Sebastien Haller, who signed for Ajax earlier this month. The Athletic are reporting that the latest name on the Hammers’ hitlist is Sevilla forward Youssef En-Nesyri. Some sources are claiming however that the West Ham board have remained true to form and only offered 50% of the fee demanded by the Spanish club which means, once again for the Hammers, that transfer is unlikely to get over the line. Sport Social’s Niall McCaughan has more on this story which you can read here.

Chelsea look to steal march on Premier League rivals to land Haaland | 19th Jan 2021 08:27 | Jim Salveson

Chelsea are trying to beat the pack of Premier League clubs chasing Norwegian star Erling Haaland by attempting to agree a deal for a summer transfer. According to Sky Sports journalist Angelo Mangiante, the Blues have two main targets for their summer spending; Declan Rice and the Dortmund striker. The players’ release clause does not activate until the summer of 2022 but Roman Abramovich is allegedly prepared to break the clubs transfer record to seal the deal.

Erlin Haaland has been linked with a number of Premier League clubs (PA)

Dele Alli awaits decision on French future | 19th Jan 2021 07:59 | Jim Salveson

Dele Alli will find out this week whether Jose Mourinho will grant his wish and let him leave Tottenham for PSG. Former Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino wants Alli as part of his new look PSG side but the London team seem reluctant to part with the player who has only had a bit-part role so far this season. The Mirror are reporting that a decision will be made this week on whether to allow Alli to move to Paris on loan for the rest of the season.