Good morning guys and welcome to today’s Daily Briefing, ad-free and straight to your inbox as ever :-)
Today’s top stories:
Olivier Giroud has been performing at a very high level and it could now earn him a contract extension with AC Milan. Giroud will now focus on the World Cup with France and then time for a new deal with AC Milan.
There’s been some speculation in recent days linking Seko Fofana as a target for Arsenal. I don’t know yet where he’ll end up, but I can give my current understanding of his situation:
Seko Fofana has new agent now and he’s obviously working to find solutions for 2023. At the moment it is still early, nothing advanced; but he can be an opportunity not just for Premier League clubs, also in other leagues. His price tag could be around €40m.
Memphis Depay’s future is open. There's a chance he will go in January, yes - but the decision also depends on the proposals - he’s set to be a free agent in June so he’d only accept a top club. At the moment, I’m told there are no negotiations with any club and the World Cup could be important chance for him.
💬 Would you like to see YOUR club move for Memphis Depay? Or should Barcelona give him more of a chance? Give me your thoughts in the comments!
Official Bayern statement on Sadio Mane’s injury and World Cup hopes: “Sadio Mane has picked up an injury and he won’t be available for game against Schalke. Further tests will follow in the next few days — Bayern is in contact with the medical team of Senegalese Football Association.”
Chelsea want to sign the best young talents in the world, with Endrick one of the players they are targeting. They will be in the race for the Palmeiras wonderkid, along with Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain. It’s been part of Todd Boehly’s strategy to sign top young players like this, as we saw with the signings of Cesare Casadei and Carney Chukwuemeka in the summer.
Confirmed: Reece James will not be going to the World Cup with England, as he shared in the statement below:
Could Chelsea sign a replacement for the injured Reece James at right-back? I’m aware that Inter Milan’s Denzel Dumfries has always been one of the players appreciated by Chelsea; Dumfries was in the list in the summer alongside Kyle Walker-Peters but he decided to stay at Inter. Still, I think it’s not going to be easy to get a deal done in January, Inter want more than €30m for him.
Today we’ll find out Gareth Southgate’s England squad for the World Cup. I don’t know yet if we’ll see any surprise selections, but there are some outsiders I’d like to see get a chance.
I think James Maddison deserves an opportunity, he’s a player I really like, and he’s been showing some of the best form of his career with Leicester City this season.
I also hope that Fikayo Tomori will have some opportunity to play as he’s doing great with AC Milan. If he was showing this kind of form for a Premier League club I’m sure there would be no debate and he’d make it in.
Overall, I’m sure England can do well, but it will be important to see Southgate's choices before predicting how far they go. They showed their quality at Euro 2020 and at the 2018 World Cup, but we have to remember that their form this year has not been good. Let’s see if they can turn it around once the tournament gets going.
💬 Do you think we’ll see any surprises in the England squad? Would YOU call up James Maddison and Fikayo Tomori? I want to hear your thoughts in the comments!
France have released their official squad for the 2022 World Cup:
Didier Deschamps on Karim Benzema: “He will be with us despite the injury he suffered — his injury is because he played a lot in a short period which affected him. I believe that he will do everything he can to ready for the France-Australia match.”
💬 How far will France go in the World Cup? Could we see Mbappe or Benzema win the Golden Boot? I want to hear your thoughts in the comments!
There’s been some speculation in recent days linking Seko Fofana as a target for Liverpool. It’s too early to say for sure if he’ll go there, or to Arsenal, or somewhere else.
Seko Fofana recently got a new agent and is now working to find solutions for 2023. At the moment it is still early, nothing advanced; but he can be an opportunity not just for Premier League clubs, also in other leagues. His price tag could be around €40m.
Jurgen Klopp on the Liverpool ownership: “I have a great relationship with FSG. I really like how it works but if it does change, I am committed to the club and that is nothing to do with the people here.”
📰 Reports in Germany claim Liverpool are interested in Borussia Dortmund wonderkid Youssoufa Moukoko, 17, who has six goals in 13 games this season (Bild)
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I said earlier this week that Manchester City would not be making any signings for the January transfer window, and the same is true of player sales. The plan for Pep Guardiola and the City board is to keep this squad together. I don’t expect we’ll see any ins or outs at the club this January.
A new right-back is a priority for Manchester United, with Erik ten Hag keen to have one more option alongside Diogo Dalot, with Aaron Wan-Bissaka not in his plans.
Sergino Dest had been an option for Man Utd in the summer, but he went on loan to AC Milan for the season so won’t be an option in January.
I’ve seen some rumours linking Memphis Depay with a move back to Old Trafford, but it’s too early to say for sure. They explored him as an option in the summer, and his future remains open in January.
📰 Reports also claim Man Utd are leading the race to sign highly-rated young Benfica midfielder Enzo Perez (Record)
Endrick’s father has been very clear - nothing is agreed with any club, they are still waiting for the best project.
There are a lot of rumours, but I can confirm my understanding is that Chelsea, Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are the three clubs pushing hardest to sign Endrick. They are all obsessed with this potential signing.
Palmeiras have a €60m release clause for their teenage talent, but I’m also told they are open to negotiating a deal with a different structure.
💬 Where do you think Endrick will end up? Is he the best player in the world in his age group right now?
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez: “Carlo Ancelotti is the best manager for Real Madrid. He's perfect as he understands our values and ideas, so players can also feel the same. We've great relationship and he's the perfect coach for us.”
Southampton have full agreement in place with Luton boss Nathan Jones. He will be their new manager, done and now sealed — here we go! Jones will be unveiled as the Saints’ new head coach on long-term contract.
I’m aware there’s been some speculation about the goalkeeper situation at Tottenham, so I thought I’d give my current understanding of the club’s plans…
There are no advanced talks with any goalkeeper yet, it’s too early to say. Conte is happy with Hugo Lloris but obviously on the club’s side they’re monitoring other goalkeepers for the future. It’s not something imminent.
Official. Son Heung-min confirms that he will be going to the World Cup despite injury picked up in the last UCL game.
He said: “I can’t wait to represent my country, see you soon in Qatar!”