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Serie A

Perfect ? for Europe's biggest soccer clubs this holiday season

In the spirit of giving, theScore identifies one gift that would benefit each of Europe’s biggest football clubs this holiday season.

Arsenal

? A new leader: The captain merry-go-round at Arsenal continued this month with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s removal as the club leader. Just over two years after Granit Xhaka was stripped of the captaincy, Aubameyang experienced the same fate as his predecessor because of ongoing disciplinary issues. Now the pressure lies on manager Mikel Arteta to appoint a new leader who can actually lead by example.

Chelsea

? Shooting boots for Timo Werner: There’s no denying Romelu Lukaku’s quality when fit, but Werner continues to struggle inside the penalty area. He’s not a viable alternative to Lukaku, and Chelsea as a whole can be guilty of wasting chances. Either Werner revives his scoring form from RB Leipzig soon, or the Blues’ hopes for silverware lean precariously on Lukaku’s fitness and unreliable false nines.

Marc Atkins / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Liverpool

? Stadium ban for Paul Tierney: Jurgen Klopp made it absolutely clear: He has a problem with just one referee, and that referee is Mr. Tierney. Klopp’s vendetta has grown since Tierney became responsible for 44% of Liverpool’s yellow cards and their one red despite officiating only three of their 18 Premier League matches this term. Will last Sunday’s dubious calls at Tottenham Hotspur haunt Liverpool when the title race is over?

Manchester City

? Cotton wool: Following his transformation from ponderous to imperious in under a year, City need to wrap Rodri in cotton wool. Although veteran Fernandinho, the versatile Bernardo Silva, and others can step in at the base of midfield when required, Rodri mops up in front of the backline and dictates tempo like no other player in Pep Guardiola’s ensemble. The 25-year-old is key to his team’s ambitions.

Manchester United

? A defensive midfielder: In two-plus years as Manchester United manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer signed wingers, strikers, and playmakers. But he never pushed for a star defensive midfielder. Rotating Fred, Nemanja Matic, and Scott McTominay, Solskjaer often lost games in midfield. The absence of balance was one of many things that cost the Norwegian his job, and interim replacement Ralf Rangnick should prioritize that position. RB Leipzig’s Amadou Haidara is exactly the kind of robust central midfielder who can execute Rangnick’s high-pressing style and protect the back four.

Alex Pantling / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Tottenham Hotspur

? Patience: The assignment was never going to be easy for Antonio Conte after inheriting a dysfunctional Tottenham squad midseason. It was a relationship that few envisioned, as Spurs appeared to be punching above their weight when reports linked them with the accomplished Italian manager. But if Conte perseveres through this season and gets the resources he needs to rebuild the squad in the summer, his arrival could be a turning point in the club’s history.

Atletico Madrid

? Escape room experience: This gift is tailor-made for Diego Simeone. An escape room is a fun challenge, and, judging from the hair-tugging stress that plagues Atletico Madrid this season, they need some fun. It would also boost the manager’s creativity as he tries to work his way out. Forcing Simeone to think outside the box could save Aleti’s campaign as it may encourage him to be more flexible with his tactics.

Barcelona

? Money tree: Working off debt can be daunting, especially when the deficit totals around €1.35 billion and a further €1.5 billion is expected to cover renovations of the club’s stadium and training facilities. Gift cards or $10 in a card from an unpopular uncle can’t remedy such financial hardship. So a good friend of Barcelona needs to visit the garden center and purchase a Pachira aquatica – or money tree – in hopes the plant will bring enough luck to entice a rival into overpaying for Martin Braithwaite. Miracles can happen.

Denis Doyle / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Real Madrid

? Clean bill of health: Real Madrid won’t complain, but there’s been a serious lack of suspense in the Spanish title race so far. While the downfall of Barcelona hasn’t helped, it’s been a one-horse race with Los Blancos enjoying their spot atop the table for the vast majority of the season. Unless Sevilla or another contender emerges, injuries are just about the only threat to Real Madrid’s quest to win La Liga for a record 35th time.

AC Milan

? Senzu beans: These beans give new life to downed, injured, or entirely defeated characters in “Dragon Ball Z,” and AC Milan would do anything to have such a remedy in real life. This team is limping into the second half of the season, just as it did at this time last year, and the injuries keep piling up. The club has lost 187 man games due to muscular injuries since September 2020, more than any other Serie A team and more than double Inter Milan’s total, according to Italian outlet Radio Rossonera. It’s especially dire now. The Rossoneri have won just three of their last 10 matches across all competitions.

Inter Milan

? Anti-aging supplements: With an average age of 29, Inter are built for the here and now. Conte began the push to sign veterans when he arrived in 2019, and the club won its first Scudetto in a decade largely because of the experience in its ranks. Inter then signed 35-year-old Edin Dzeko to replace Lukaku, and while he’s produced so far with 11 goals and three assists, the Bosnian is not one for the future. Half of Inter’s squad is 29 and older. Soon, they’ll need a refresh.

DeFodi Images / DeFodi Images / Getty

Juventus

? A top striker: After finishing third, fifth, and fourth in goals scored over the last few seasons, Juventus plummeted to 13th in Serie A this campaign with just 27 tallies from 19 matches. It’s a mediocre return for a club of its stature, a microcosm of Cristiano Ronaldo’s acrimonious departure and Alvaro Morata’s inability to stay onside. The Bianconeri need someone who can bang in goals now and for the next several years. Fiorentina’s Dusan Vlahovic – who equaled Ronaldo’s record of 33 goals in a calendar year – could fill the gap.

Bayern Munich

? New contract for Sule: Bayern Munich will have a huge void to fill in their defense if they can’t convince Niklas Sule to stay. The German center-back has reportedly become unsettled at Bayern and could be targetted by top clubs if he departs when his contract expires next summer. It would be a devastating blow for a Bayern squad that might not have the resources to satisfy Sule’s financial demands.

Borussia Dortmund

? Promise ring: Next summer could be a defining moment that dictates how the next couple of years unfolds for Borussia Dortmund. While their attempt to hold onto Erling Haaland beyond this season could prove futile, it’ll be vital for Dortmund to find a way to prevent other young stars from leaving. Getting Jude Bellingham to commit his future should be at the forefront of Dortmund’s summer plans, as the talented teenager is expected to be one of the most coveted players during the summer signing period.

FRANCK FIFE / AFP / Getty

Paris Saint-Germain

? Year’s supply of mate: Lionel Messi hasn’t shown his best self since joining PSG in the summer. A good dose of home cooking could put the 34-year-old more at ease. Messi loves to drink mate – a beverage infused with dried leaves and caffeine commonly served in his native Argentina – along with manager Mauricio Pochettino and compatriots Angel Di Maria and Leandro Paredes. Neymar often has a sip as well. Maybe a year’s supply of this popular drink can bring this group of egos and talent together for the home stretch.

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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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