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Varane, Soucek, Phillips, Dragusin & Ancelotti: The Essential Transfer Round Up – Tuesday, January 2nd


Varane on his way out of United

Crashing out of the Champions League last month and breaking a string of unwanted records, it is no secret that Manchester United have come under a huge amount of scrutiny this season.

With growing speculation over Eric ten Hag’s long-term future at Old Trafford, the Red Devils appear set for what will be a hectic January transfer window.

Although the ex-Ajax boss might be desperate to add to his squad during the January transfer window, it looks like several United’s first-team stars will be heading for the exit.

While United might have continued to show a string of defensive issues this season, Raphael Varane has struggled to find any kind of stability and there has been continued speculation over his relationship with ten Hag.

With reported interest from the likes of Saudi Arabia, it has been suggested that United are unwilling to offer the French defender a new deal and he could be on his way out this month.

Soucek pens new West Ham deal

Punching their Europa League knockout stage ticket last month and really firing on all cylinders this season, West Ham have seen their summer recruits make an immediate impact since arriving at the London Stadium.

However, while the duo of Mohamed Kudus and Jarrod Bowen might have continued to spearhead the Hammers’ top-six charge this season, Thomas Soucek is certainly enjoying a new lease of life in east London.

Relishing his more advanced role following Declan Rice’s £105million move to Arsenal, the Czech Republic international has already notched eight goals across all competitions so far this season.

Becoming a key part of David Moyes’ success and featuring in all of West Ham’s 18 Premier League appearances this year, Soucek has put pen to paper on a new three-year extension.

With his new deal valid until the summer of 2027, the former Sparta Prague star also rejected potential interest from Serie A heavyweights Inter Milan who were reported to have been monitoring Soucek’s situation closely.

PSG keen on Phillips

While Kalvin Phillips might have only arrived at the Etihad last year, the England international finds himself at the heart of a Manchester City nightmare.

Although Pep Guardiola might have been filled with praise for the former Leeds midfielder, Phillips has drastically struggled to find any kind of regular first-team action in the blue half of Manchester.

While the Sky Blues might have made real history last season as they became the first English club since 1999 to be crowned treble champions, Phillips was forced to watch on from the sidelines.

Yet to start a single Premier League contest this season, the Man City outcast has accepted that it is best for both parties to kick start his career away from the defending champions.

Despite continued interest from both Newcastle and Italian icons Juventus, it has been heavily reported that PSG are also monitoring Phillips’ situation and are keen on mounting a January swoop.

Tottenham inch towards Dragusin deal

Gaining a string of plaudits since they welcomed Ange Postecoglu to north London over the summer, it is no secret that Tottenham have a Champions League return at the top of their agenda this season.

However, while Spurs might have quickly gained a reputation for their free-flowing approach in the final third, it appears that the former Celtic boss is keen on adding defensive reinforcements.

With Eric Dier expected to leave the club this month and Cristian Romero out for the next month after sustaining a muscle injury, Postecoglu appears to be close to getting his number-one target through the doors.

Although Tottenham might have remained keen on a January swoop for Nice’s Jean-Clair Todibo, it appears that discussions are well underway for the highly-touted Radu Dragusin.

With the Genoa ace making it clear that he wants to complete a Premier League switch this month, discussions have already taken place between both parties and an agreement could be agreed in the next few days.

Ancelotti rules out defensive reinforcements

While Real Madrid might have eventually finished 10 points adrift of defending their La Liga crown last season, Los Blancos have certainly come roaring back this time around.

With some in Carlo Ancelotti’s camp dreaming of the chance to mount both a domestic and European charge in 2024, there has been continued speculation that the Spanish icons could be set for a hectic January transfer window.

However, despite more speculation that Madrid could be planning another blockbuster swoop for PSG superstar Kylian Mbappe, the former AC Milan boss has publicly ruled out a new defender arriving at the Bernabeu.

Despite speculation that Madrid were eyeing a potential return for ex-defender Varane, Ancelotti has stated that he is currently happy with his defensive options in the Spanish capital.

Watching French starlet Aurélien Tchouaméni continue to shine since featuring at the heart of Ancelotti’s defence, Los Blancos are instead focusing their January attention elsewhere.





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