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Biggest winners and losers from the wildest transfer window ever

And … breathe. After a flurry of deadline-day moves, theScore picks out the winners and losers from the most unpredictable summer transfer window of our time.

Winners: Paris Saint-Germain

PSG bullied the opposition in the summer transfer window, showing no mercy as they poached teams’ best players on free transfers. The barely believable signing of Lionel Messi served as a changing of the guard, the handing of the baton from the football establishment to the new kids on the block.

PSG’s signings read like end credits on a Hollywood epic: Messi, Gianluigi Donnarumma, Achraf Hakimi, Georginio Wijnaldum, and Sergio Ramos join an already stellar cast featuring Marquinhos, Marco Verratti, Neymar, and Kylian Mbappe. That PSG could assemble such a roster without falling afoul of UEFA’s Financial Fair Play rules is either genius or suspicious, depending on your perspective.

John Berry / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Perhaps emboldened by their headline-grabbing moves, Les Parisiens reportedly had the cojones to turn down Real Madrid’s €200 million for Mbappe. PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi seems to be convinced he can re-sign the 22-year-old hotshot before his contract expires next summer.

Now come the expectations: PSG have to win the Champions League, the competition their Qatari owners have sought since they took over the club in 2011. Anything less will be a failure.

Losers: Barcelona

If you think your favorite team had a rough transfer window, take solace in the fact it wasn’t as disastrous as what transpired at Barcelona.

Mired in a financial quagmire of its own making, the Catalans lost Messi even though he wanted to stay. That alone makes Barca the biggest loser of the summer – perhaps any summer. Maybe the Blaugrana could’ve kept Messi if they managed to offload Antoine Griezmann before the final day of the window.

SOPA Images / LightRocket / Getty

As if losing Messi wasn’t bad enough, Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba had to take last-minute pay cuts just to allow the club register Sergio Aguero’s contract. If they hadn’t, Barcelona would’ve exceeded their salary cap and forfeited Aguero’s signing.

Barcelona were so strapped for cash they couldn’t even keep promising teenager Ilaix Moriba, who was relegated to the club’s B team in the preseason because of his contract demands and later sold to RB Leipzig. All told, these guys put on a masterclass in how not to run a football club.

Winners: Manchester United

For a long time, Manchester United seemed to spend money for the sake of spending money. They’re still dropping huge wads of cash, but at least they’re breaking the bank on the right players.

Take away Cristiano Ronaldo for a second. The addition of Jadon Sancho solves a problem on the right wing and solidifies an electrifying front four that could compete with any team in Europe. The arrival of Raphael Varane also brings much-needed relief to a back line that has cost United points in the past. Together, they’ve brought a balance to United unseen since the days of Sir Alex Ferguson. Fans would have liked a defensive midfielder to round out the team, but for once, the Red Devils have the vast majority of pieces in place.

Chris Brunskill/Fantasista / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Now, Ronaldo himself doesn’t exactly address a need. He’ll simply score the goals Edinson Cavani would have otherwise netted. Ronaldo may even take time away from budding talent Mason Greenwood. But the 36-year-old wouldn’t have returned if he didn’t believe the club could win trophies. And that’s ultimately validation of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s squad and the club’s prospects.

Loser: Harry Kane

Harry Kane clearly wanted to leave Tottenham Hotspur for Manchester City this summer, but there was no convincing chairman Daniel Levy. City’s reported £125-million bid fell well short of Levy’s asking price, and Kane couldn’t possibly force his way out with three years remaining on his contract. Had he negotiated a release clause in the six-year deal he signed with Tottenham back in 2018 – as Jack Grealish did with Aston Villa last year – Kane would’ve had the authority to engineer a move to the reigning Premier League champions.

Catherine Ivill / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Despite the power struggle, the 28-year-old said his “conscience is clear,” and true as that may be, he has a lot of work to do to regain the faith of the fans. He did himself no favors by showing up late to preseason training. Whether he had an agreement with the club to arrive at a later date is irrelevant. Perception is reality, and unfortunately for Kane, he’s lost the benefit of the doubt.

There’s only one thing he can do to restore his name: score goals.

Winner: The almighty Premier League pound

It was business as usual in the Premier League. Even against the backdrop of a pandemic that has pilfered the coffers of the richest clubs, spending among English teams topped £1 billion for the seventh consecutive summer, according to transfermarkt.com.

Most expensive signings

Player Club Fee
Jack Grealish Manchester City £100 million
Romelu Lukaku Chelsea £97.5 million
Jadon Sancho Manchester United £73 million
Ben White Arsenal £50 million
Raphael Varane Manchester United £41 million

(Source: Sky Sports)

Even with a hefty £97.5-million outlay for Romelu Lukaku, Chelsea only really spent as much as it had raised in sales. That’s thanks to club director Marina Granovskaia, who once again displayed her negotiating acumen to secure close to £90 million for Tammy Abraham, Kurt Zouma, and Fikayo Tomori.

However, some teams may rue the amount of money they’ve coughed up. Arsenal sit at the bottom of the Premier League despite handing over a reported £156.8 million in transfer fees – more than any other club in the English top flight. The Premier League pound giveth and taketh away.

Loser: Serie A

Ronaldo and Lukaku, the top two scorers from the past Serie A season, led an exodus of talent from the peninsula this summer. Most of it was, for better or worse, financially driven. Inter Milan, facing a financial reckoning just a few short months after winning the Scudetto, had to sacrifice Lukaku and Hakimi, and across town, rivals AC Milan decided to surrender Donnarumma on a free transfer, having refused to raise their offer of €7 million per season. Udinese sold midfield juggernaut Rodrigo De Paul for a hefty profit, and Atalanta peddled up-and-coming defender Cristian Romero to Tottenham for the same reason.

Mark Leech/Offside / Offside / Getty

Serie A itself isn’t in bad shape – it recorded more goals than any of the other top five leagues last weekend – but it’s lost a ton of visibility. Unlike Premier League clubs – which rely on lucrative domestic and international TV deals – every team in Italy has had to make sacrifices to recover lost revenue during the pandemic.

Winners: Roma

For two years, Roma have announced each of their signings alongside pictures of missing children, using their global reach on Twitter not just to tease an announcement or score social media points, but to affect positive change in their community and abroad.

So far, 12 of the more than 100 children who have featured in Roma’s campaign have been found safe.

“It is difficult to explain the happiness of having in some way contributed to the finding of one of these children and consequently to the relief of her family,” said Uzbek striker Eldor Shomurodov, who joined the club from fellow Serie A side Genoa in August. “I’m proud to be part of a club that uses the popularity of football in this way.”

Last year, Roma brought more than 200 professional clubs together to raise awareness on International Missing Children’s Day, sharing videos to a combined 400 million followers.

Loser: UEFA

UEFA is finally admitting defeat. Financial Fair Play is reportedly heading into the bin after a decade of politics and grandstanding. Ultimately, FFP did nothing to bridge the gap between the elite and the chasing pack. If anything, it protected the wealthiest teams, whose vast revenue streams enabled them to spend more money then their thriftier peers.

UEFA relaxed FFP regulations during the pandemic, which could explain why PSG managed to commit tens of millions of euros in salaries and transfer fees despite suffering losses of €204 million and €124 million in the past two seasons.

BERTRAND GUAY / AFP / Getty

But with or without FFP, UEFA doesn’t have the confidence of some of its biggest stakeholders. The threat of a breakaway Super League remains high, with a court in Madrid ordering UEFA to rescind the sanctions it imposed on the 12 breakaway clubs. Barcelona, Juventus, and Real Madrid, in particular, believe UEFA has failed to develop a sustainable model. Fans of both big and small clubs believe the same.

The last few months proved UEFA can’t do much to create parity.

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Serie A

Grading the 10 biggest signings of the transfer window so far

The wheeling and dealing is well underway across Europe. From best to worst, we grade the biggest signings completed thus far in the summer transfer window.

Erling Haaland ?? Manchester City

The deal: Reported €60-million fee (Read more) ?

A slam dunk. Any of Europe’s top clubs could’ve paid the €60-million release clause in Haaland’s contract with Borussia Dortmund; the fact the Norwegian talent chose Manchester City is a vote of confidence for Pep Guardiola and club management.

City needed a center-forward more than most clubs, and after winning four of the last five Premier League titles, they can now build their next project around Haaland. He’ll just have to find a way to adapt his own direct style of play to Guardiola’s system, which requires strikers to do as much work off the ball as they do on it.

Verdict: A+

Sadio Mane ?? Bayern Munich

picture alliance / picture alliance / Getty

The deal: Reported €32-million fee (Read more) ?

Bayern negotiated the bargain of the window. Signing a player like Mane for €32 million is an incredible piece of business. His contract situation at Liverpool undoubtedly played into Bayern’s hands – he was a year away from free agency and ready to move on – but the fee is impressive nonetheless. The 30-year-old is in his prime, a regular contender for the Ballon d’Or, and a perfect fit for Julian Nagelsmann’s high-pressing tactics. Mane’s coming from a similar system at Liverpool and is an ideal replacement for Robert Lewandowski, if and when he leaves.

Bayern could’ve waited until next summer to sign Mane on a free transfer, but they’d have faced more competition for his signature. They also would’ve been forced to pay the player a significant signing bonus, as is customary for free agents.

In the end, the Bavarians worked out a deal that satisfied all parties.

Verdict: A+

Darwin Nunez ?? Liverpool

The deal: €75-million fee (Read more) ?

By resolving Mane’s situation early in the window, Liverpool gave themselves a head start in the search for his successor. Nunez quickly emerged as the ideal candidate, and while he could cost Liverpool as much as €100 million, the 23-year-old demonstrated over the past two seasons at Benfica why he’s tailor-made for Jurgen Klopp’s aggressive style of play.

Nunez scored 32 goals in 38 appearances in the Primeira Liga and Champions League last season, showing not only a decisive streak but also the humility to track back and work off the ball. While he often drifts to the left, Nunez is a much more natural striker than Mane, and he’ll form a deadly triumvirate alongside Luis Diaz and Mohamed Salah.

Verdict: A

Aurelien Tchouameni ?? Real Madrid

Helios de la Rubia / Real Madrid / Getty

The deal: Reported €80-million fee (Read more) ?

Madrid are back to spending huge sums of cash – they’re just spending it differently. Los Blancos are much happier to pay a premium for up-and-coming talent than they are for the type of household names that comprised the Galactico era. Tchouameni fits into the club’s transfer strategy, and even with a hefty price tag, he arrives as manager Carlo Ancelotti begins to transition from one generation to the next.

Succession planning has become Madrid’s priority in recent seasons, with Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo, and Eduardo Camavinga all joining as teenage prospects. At 22, Tchouameni arrives a little older than the rest, but he’s set to follow the same path. He may not get too much playing time next season – Casemiro, Toni Kroos, and Luka Modric still play leading roles in midfield – but the Frenchman stands to benefit from a more gradual integration into the team. Tchouameni will get to learn from some of the best in his trade and won’t face as much pressure as a typical big-money signing would.

Verdict: A

Gabriel Jesus ?? Arsenal

The deal: Reported £45-million fee (Read more) ?

Arsenal needed an upgrade in attack and found their man in Jesus. Mikel Arteta convinced the Brazilian to join the Gunners amid a sea of opportunities, building off his relationship with the striker from their days together at City. Arteta coached Jesus as Guardiola’s assistant, often staying after training sessions to work on his finishing. The familiarity between the two should help the player adapt to Arsenal’s system.

There’s just one question: Can Jesus carry the load as the main man up top? He hasn’t made more than 22 starts in a single Premier League season, and he scored fewer than 10 goals in four of the last six seasons. Arsenal desperately need a reliable presence at center-forward, and the pressure to score on a weekly basis may become a burden. Jesus will have to continue working with Arteta to get to where the club needs him to be.

Verdict: B+

Kalvin Phillips ?? Manchester City

Tom Flathers / Manchester City FC / Getty

The deal: Reported £42-million fee (Read more) ?

The heir to Fernandinho is a player Leeds United fans frequently dubbed the Yorkshire Pirlo. That’s Phillips, a defensive midfielder built in the mold of Andrea Pirlo who can ping passes and protect the backline in equal measure.

Whether Phillips will have the opportunity to make his mark is another question entirely.

It’s unclear how Guardiola plans to use the 26-year-old. Spending £45 million on a bench player seems excessive. Guardiola could find a way to play Rodri and Phillips at the same time, but that would come at the cost of using a more defensive setup. Phillips is certainly a talented midfielder, and he’ll add value to an already impressive side that features a wealth of talent in the middle of the park, but there’s no guarantee he’ll have the starts he needs to make an impact on a weekly basis.

Verdict: B+

Raheem Sterling ?? Chelsea

The deal: Reported £50-million fee (Read more) ?

City fetched a very good fee for a player who would’ve been out of contract in 12 months. But that doesn’t necessarily mean Chelsea overpaid, either. Sterling is one of the Premier League’s most talented players, and if he can polish his game under Thomas Tuchel, he could become a 20-goal-per-season player.

In making the 27-year-old his first signing as Chelsea co-owner, Todd Boehly adds a player who addresses a need and makes headlines. Tuchel finally has a true left-winger in his ranks, and Sterling has enough pedigree and experience to lead the attack. Though he has a tendency to waste golden opportunities – he’s missed the fifth-most chances of any Premier League player since the start of the 2016-17 season – he’s still scored 10 or more goals in each of the last five seasons.

Verdict: B+

Paul Pogba ?? Juventus

Daniele Badolato – Juventus FC / Juventus FC / Getty

The deal: Free transfer (Read more) ?

Now that Pogba’s back home, maybe he’ll show the world he truly is the player Manchester United thought he’d be when they signed him in 2016 for a then-record €105 million.

Though Pogba has an ally in manager Massimiliano Allegri, who coached him during his first stint at Juventus, the Frenchman arrives with a lot to prove. Despite struggling for form and fitness over the last few seasons, Pogba is again one of Serie A’s highest earners. The 29-year-old hasn’t played competitively since April, and he’s battled the type of muscular injuries that can persist without the right training program.

Verdict: B

Romelu Lukaku ?? Inter Milan

The deal: Reported €8-million loan fee (Read more) ?

Ultimately, Inter Milan found a way to make Lukaku’s wish come true. The Belgian international desperately wanted to leave Chelsea, and the Nerazzurri only had to pay €8 million to re-sign a player they sold a year ago for more than €100 million.

But it feels like nothing more than a band-aid solution. If Lukaku is prolific once again, Inter will have to decide whether to sign him permanently, and Chelsea would most certainly ask them to pay a fee close to his original price. Given the Italian club initially sold him because of financial difficulties, that seems unlikely. His arrival – even on loan – forced Inter to put negotiations for free agent Paulo Dybala on hold.

Inter didn’t even need an upgrade up top. They scored a Serie A-leading 84 goals in 2021-22 with Edin Dzeko, Lautaro Martinez, Joaquin Correa, and Alexis Sanchez sharing striking duties. They may now have to sell standout defender Milan Skriniar to balance the budget.

Verdict: B-

Richarlison ?? Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur FC / Tottenham Hotspur FC / Getty

The deal: Reported £50-million fee (Read more) ?

Richarlison left Everton as a fan favorite. His tireless work off the ball and boundless energy made it easy for fans to root for him. That’s probably why Antonio Conte wanted the Brazilian at Tottenham Hotspur: His workmanlike approach matches the Italian manager’s own never-say-die attitude.

However, the signing itself is problematic for several reasons. Richarlison is a left-sided forward and likes to cut in from the wing. Heung-Min Son plays a similar style of football, and as a natural left-winger, he’s unlikely to give up his place to Richarlison. Conte could deploy Richarlison as a second striker, but that would require a change of formation and force Son out of his best position. And he can forget about replacing Harry Kane up top. That’s a nonstarter.

So Conte will have to either shunt Richarlison onto his off wing or leave him on the bench. That seems like a strange compromise for a £50-million signing.

Verdict: C

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Serie A

Grading the 10 biggest signings of the transfer window so far

The wheeling and dealing is well underway across Europe. From best to worst, we grade the biggest signings completed thus far in the summer transfer window.

Erling Haaland ?? Manchester City

The deal: Reported €60-million fee (Read more) ?

A slam dunk. Any of Europe’s top clubs could’ve paid the €60-million release clause in Haaland’s contract with Borussia Dortmund; the fact the Norwegian talent chose Manchester City is a vote of confidence for Pep Guardiola and club management.

City needed a center-forward more than most clubs, and after winning four of the last five Premier League titles, they can now build their next project around Haaland. He’ll just have to find a way to adapt his own direct style of play to Guardiola’s system, which requires strikers to do as much work off the ball as they do on it.

Verdict: A+

Sadio Mane ?? Bayern Munich

picture alliance / picture alliance / Getty

The deal: Reported €32-million fee (Read more) ?

Bayern negotiated the bargain of the window. Signing a player like Mane for €32 million is an incredible piece of business. His contract situation at Liverpool undoubtedly played into Bayern’s hands – he was a year away from free agency and ready to move on – but the fee is impressive nonetheless. The 30-year-old is in his prime, a regular contender for the Ballon d’Or, and a perfect fit for Julian Nagelsmann’s high-pressing tactics. Mane’s coming from a similar system at Liverpool and is an ideal replacement for Robert Lewandowski, if and when he leaves.

Bayern could’ve waited until next summer to sign Mane on a free transfer, but they’d have faced more competition for his signature. They also would’ve been forced to pay the player a significant signing bonus, as is customary for free agents.

In the end, the Bavarians worked out a deal that satisfied all parties.

Verdict: A+

Darwin Nunez ?? Liverpool

The deal: €75-million fee (Read more) ?

By resolving Mane’s situation early in the window, Liverpool gave themselves a head start in the search for his successor. Nunez quickly emerged as the ideal candidate, and while he could cost Liverpool as much as €100 million, the 23-year-old demonstrated over the past two seasons at Benfica why he’s tailor-made for Jurgen Klopp’s aggressive style of play.

Nunez scored 32 goals in 38 appearances in the Primeira Liga and Champions League last season, showing not only a decisive streak but also the humility to track back and work off the ball. While he often drifts to the left, Nunez is a much more natural striker than Mane, and he’ll form a deadly triumvirate alongside Luis Diaz and Mohamed Salah.

Verdict: A

Aurelien Tchouameni ?? Real Madrid

Helios de la Rubia / Real Madrid / Getty

The deal: Reported €80-million fee (Read more) ?

Madrid are back to spending huge sums of cash – they’re just spending it differently. Los Blancos are much happier to pay a premium for up-and-coming talent than they are for the type of household names that comprised the Galactico era. Tchouameni fits into the club’s transfer strategy, and even with a hefty price tag, he arrives as manager Carlo Ancelotti begins to transition from one generation to the next.

Succession planning has become Madrid’s priority in recent seasons, with Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo, and Eduardo Camavinga all joining as teenage prospects. At 22, Tchouameni arrives a little older than the rest, but he’s set to follow the same path. He may not get too much playing time next season – Casemiro, Toni Kroos, and Luka Modric still play leading roles in midfield – but the Frenchman stands to benefit from a more gradual integration into the team. Tchouameni will get to learn from some of the best in his trade and won’t face as much pressure as a typical big-money signing would.

Verdict: A

Gabriel Jesus ?? Arsenal

The deal: Reported £45-million fee (Read more) ?

Arsenal needed an upgrade in attack and found their man in Jesus. Mikel Arteta convinced the Brazilian to join the Gunners amid a sea of opportunities, building off his relationship with the striker from their days together at City. Arteta coached Jesus as Guardiola’s assistant, often staying after training sessions to work on his finishing. The familiarity between the two should help the player adapt to Arsenal’s system.

There’s just one question: Can Jesus carry the load as the main man up top? He hasn’t made more than 22 starts in a single Premier League season, and he scored fewer than 10 goals in four of the last six seasons. Arsenal desperately need a reliable presence at center-forward, and the pressure to score on a weekly basis may become a burden. Jesus will have to continue working with Arteta to get to where the club needs him to be.

Verdict: B+

Kalvin Phillips ?? Manchester City

Tom Flathers / Manchester City FC / Getty

The deal: Reported £42-million fee (Read more) ?

The heir to Fernandinho is a player Leeds United fans frequently dubbed the Yorkshire Pirlo. That’s Phillips, a defensive midfielder built in the mold of Andrea Pirlo who can ping passes and protect the backline in equal measure.

Whether Phillips will have the opportunity to make his mark is another question entirely.

It’s unclear how Guardiola plans to use the 26-year-old. Spending £45 million on a bench player seems excessive. Guardiola could find a way to play Rodri and Phillips at the same time, but that would come at the cost of using a more defensive setup. Phillips is certainly a talented midfielder, and he’ll add value to an already impressive side that features a wealth of talent in the middle of the park, but there’s no guarantee he’ll have the starts he needs to make an impact on a weekly basis.

Verdict: B+

Raheem Sterling ?? Chelsea

The deal: Reported £50-million fee (Read more) ?

City fetched a very good fee for a player who would’ve been out of contract in 12 months. But that doesn’t necessarily mean Chelsea overpaid, either. Sterling is one of the Premier League’s most talented players, and if he can polish his game under Thomas Tuchel, he could become a 20-goal-per-season player.

In making the 27-year-old his first signing as Chelsea co-owner, Todd Boehly adds a player who addresses a need and makes headlines. Tuchel finally has a true left-winger in his ranks, and Sterling has enough pedigree and experience to lead the attack. Though he has a tendency to waste golden opportunities – he’s missed the fifth-most chances of any Premier League player since the start of the 2016-17 season – he’s still scored 10 or more goals in each of the last five seasons.

Verdict: B+

Paul Pogba ?? Juventus

Daniele Badolato – Juventus FC / Juventus FC / Getty

The deal: Free transfer (Read more) ?

Now that Pogba’s back home, maybe he’ll show the world he truly is the player Manchester United thought he’d be when they signed him in 2016 for a then-record €105 million.

Though Pogba has an ally in manager Massimiliano Allegri, who coached him during his first stint at Juventus, the Frenchman arrives with a lot to prove. Despite struggling for form and fitness over the last few seasons, Pogba is again one of Serie A’s highest earners. The 29-year-old hasn’t played competitively since April, and he’s battled the type of muscular injuries that can persist without the right training program.

Verdict: B

Romelu Lukaku ?? Inter Milan

The deal: Reported €8-million loan fee (Read more) ?

Ultimately, Inter Milan found a way to make Lukaku’s wish come true. The Belgian international desperately wanted to leave Chelsea, and the Nerazzurri only had to pay €8 million to re-sign a player they sold a year ago for more than €100 million.

But it feels like nothing more than a band-aid solution. If Lukaku is prolific once again, Inter will have to decide whether to sign him permanently, and Chelsea would most certainly ask them to pay a fee close to his original price. Given the Italian club initially sold him because of financial difficulties, that seems unlikely. His arrival – even on loan – forced Inter to put negotiations for free agent Paulo Dybala on hold.

Inter didn’t even need an upgrade up top. They scored a Serie A-leading 84 goals in 2021-22 with Edin Dzeko, Lautaro Martinez, Joaquin Correa, and Alexis Sanchez sharing striking duties. They may now have to sell standout defender Milan Skriniar to balance the budget.

Verdict: B-

Richarlison ?? Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur FC / Tottenham Hotspur FC / Getty

The deal: Reported £50-million fee (Read more) ?

Richarlison left Everton as a fan favorite. His tireless work off the ball and boundless energy made it easy for fans to root for him. That’s probably why Antonio Conte wanted the Brazilian at Tottenham Hotspur: His workmanlike approach matches the Italian manager’s own never-say-die attitude.

However, the signing itself is problematic for several reasons. Richarlison is a left-sided forward and likes to cut in from the wing. Heung-Min Son plays a similar style of football, and as a natural left-winger, he’s unlikely to give up his place to Richarlison. Conte could deploy Richarlison as a second striker, but that would require a change of formation and force Son out of his best position. And he can forget about replacing Harry Kane up top. That’s a nonstarter.

So Conte will have to either shunt Richarlison onto his off wing or leave him on the bench. That seems like a strange compromise for a £50-million signing.

Verdict: C

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Serie A

Report: Chelsea could target Leao, Gnabry after missing out on Raphinha

Chelsea’s failure to sign Raphinha has opened the door to other options as they explore ways to strengthen their attack.

With the Leeds United winger set for a move to Barcelona, Chelsea have shifted their focus to Serge Gnabry of Bayern Munich and could also launch a bid for AC Milan’s Rafael Leao, according to Jacob Steinberg of The Guardian.

The Blues are reportedly monitoring Gnabry’s situation. The German winger’s future is uncertain given he has just one year left on his contract with the Bavarian giants. Gnabry scored 17 goals last season and was an important part of Bayern’s Champions League triumph in 2020.

picture alliance / picture alliance / Getty

Sealing a deal for Gnabry is thought to be more feasible than Leao, who had 11 goals and 10 assists in AC Milan’s Serie A-winning campaign last season. Milan are averse to parting with the 23-year-old and likely won’t consider offers below £100 million, Steinberg adds.

Chelsea had a deal in place to sign Raphinha last month after Leeds accepted their £55-million offer. But the Brazilian international was reportedly hesitant about moving to Stamford Bridge and has his heart set on a move to the Camp Nou instead.

Barcelona are nearing a deal after reportedly tabling an improved offer of £49 million for the 25-year-old, who joined Leeds from Rennes in 2020.

Meanwhile, Chelsea are on the verge of adding another attacking weapon in Raheem Sterling, who is reportedly set to join from Manchester City in a £50-million transfer.

Blues manager Thomas Tuchel is believed to be a big fan of Bayern Munich wantaway Robert Lewandowski, according to Steinberg. However, the prolific Pole has been trying to engineer a move to Barcelona since the 2021-22 season ended.

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