Football Features

Spurs to pay price of Man Utd’s Pogba stance? Key facts, stats & quotes behind the latest transfer news

By Mohamed Moallim

Published: 15:16, 1 July 2019

This summer’s transfer window is well and truly alive following recent, high-profile acquisitions.

None more so than Aaron Wan-Bissaka moving from Crystal Palace to record-breaking, 20-time English champions Manchester United.

With players officially registered on July 1st, expect a flurry of activity in the next couple of weeks, especially as Premier League clubs cease doing business on August 8th.

Here at Squawka, we’ve compiled a list of the hottest transfer rumours in football right now and graded how likely they are to happen.

Read on for the key stats, facts and quotes behind this week’s transfer news.

Wilfried Zaha asks Palace to let him join Arsenal

  • Zaha came through Crystal Palace’s youth academy.
  • He made over 140 appearances for The Eagles before joining Man Utd in 2013 as Sir Alex Ferguson’s last signing at the club.
  • Zaha found it tough at Old Trafford and ultimately made four appearances before returning to south London.
  • Since coming back in 2014, he’s bagged 35 goals across 180 matches in all competitions.
  • No Palace player in 2018/19 scored more Premier League goals from open play than Zaha (10).

“For me to be better, to achieve what I know I am capable of, I have to aim to play at the very highest level, to win trophies. I have to experience the Champions League. I just need the opportunity, that’s it. And I’ll do the rest.”

Wilfried Zaha speaking to the Daily Mail (April, 2019)

Key stat: Zaha attempted the most dribbles (249) of any Premier League player in 2018/19.

Could it happen? The power currently lies with Palace here. There’s no incentive for them to sell, especially when Arsenal’s transfer budget for this summer is widely known. The Eagles will also be reluctant to lose a second key player after Wan-Bissaka recently became a Manchester United employee, but could they afford to have a disgruntled player on their books?

Ben Yedder to replace Lukaku?

  • Started his career at UJA Alfortville in Paris before moving to Toulouse in 2010.
  • Scored 71 goals in 174 first team appearances for Le Téfécé.
  • That form earned him a move to Sevilla in 2016, where he’s bagged 70 goals so far.
  • Romelu Lukaku is being heavily linked with a move to Serie A giants Inter Milan.
  • Reports in Spain suggest United have already agreed terms with Ben Yedder.

“I dream of playing at a high level, in the biggest clubs in the world and to be alongside players of international class. It’s a case of seeing where I can get to in terms of level.”

Ben Yedder on a potential Sevilla exit

Key stat: Ben Yedder managed the joint-highest number of fast breaks (10) in La Liga during 2018/19.

Could it happen? It’s looking increasingly like that Romelu Lukaku is off to Inter Milan and should that happen, Solskjaer needs a replacement. At 28, Wissam Ben Yedder is quite a bit older than the players Solskjaer seems to be targetting in this window, but his pace, clinical finishing and ability to spearhead counter-attacks all add up to make him the Norwegian’s perfect striker. It is believed Ben Yedder has a modest £35m release clause and that Man Utd have already agreed terms.

Atletico Madrid hijack Napoli’s James Rodriguez deal

  • Began at Colombian outfit Envigado.
  • Made his name at FC Porto (32 goals and 41 assists in 108 games), whom he joined from Banfield.
  • Left for AS Monaco (10 goals and 14 assists in 38 games) after lifting the 2011 Europa League under André Villas-Boas.
  • His standout performances at the 2014 World Cup secured a big transfer to Real Madrid (36 goals and 40 assists in 111 games).
  • He’s since enjoyed a loan spell at Bayern Munich (15 goals and 20 assists in 67 games) where he initially linked up with ex-Real boss Carlo Ancelotti, now coaching Napoli.

“[James] has had a lot of respect for Ancelotti since the start; he recognises what he has done, he will know how to increase his value. They’ve always had a strong friendship. I think that a new career path would be best for James.”

James’ father Wilson James Rodriguez Bedoya on his son’s situation (June, 2019)

Key stat: Rodriguez produced more key passes per 90 minutes (4) than any Bundesliga player in 2018/19.

Could it happen? Rodriguez played some of his best football at Real Madrid under Carlo Ancelotti and seems interested in seeing what Serie A has to offer. It’s hard to see the Napoli switch not going through unless money becomes an issue.

Bayern to battle Man City to sign Cancelo

  • Started at Benfica before moving to Valencia on loan (2014-15).
  • Relocated to the Mestalla on a permanent basis before another loan spell at Inter Milan.
  • He’d join Juventus in the same summer as compatriot Cristiano Ronaldo.
  • A versatile full-back, capable of playing on either flank, he’d make 34 appearances in all competitions in 2018/19.
  • Cancelo has so far represented Portugal on 14 occasions at senior international level.

“I want to stay here. I hope my future is at Juventus, where I hope to win many different trophies.”

Cancelo to DAZN on his future (May, 2019)

Key stat: Cancelo completed more dribbles (61) than any other Serie A defender in 2018/19.

Could it happen? It looks like Cancelo is waving goodbye to Juve this summer. City want competition for Kyle Walker, but if Bayern decide to move Joshua Kimmich into his natural midfield spot then there’s a straightforward path to first-team football.

Eriksen to Real Madrid

  • Moved to Ajax from Odense Boldklub in 2009.
  • He’d make 163 appearances for the senior team in all competitions, registering 32 goals and 65 assists.
  • A number of European teams chased his signature, which Spurs won out in 2013.
  • Since moving to north London, the Danish playmaker has created 86 goals across 277 matches, scoring 66 himself.
  • Eriksen played an instrumental role in Spurs reaching their first European Cup final in 2018/19.

“I feel that I am at a stage of my career where I would like to try something new.”

Eriksen speaking to Ekstra Bladet (June, 2019)

Key stat: No one has created more goals for Spurs under Mauricio Pochettino than Eriksen (74).

Could it happen? This depends on Real manager Zinedine Zidane, who is reportedly keen on signing Paul Pogba, with Eriksen seen as the relatively cheaper option. The Dane, truth be told, seems ready to say goodbye to Spurs, where he’s called home since 2013.

Barcelona to announce Antoine Griezmann next week?

  • Made his senior debut with Real Sociedad in 2009.
  • After scoring 52 goals for the Basque side, he joined Atletico in 2014.
  • The Frenchman has been Diego Simone’s star man, scoring 133 goals in 257 games.
  • Controversially announced he will be leaving Atletico via the club’s social media amid Barca links.
  • Reports now suggest a deal between Barca and Atleti could be completed next week.

“I wanted to tell you I have taken the decision to leave. The truth is it has been difficult to take this route but it is what I feel I need and I would like to thank all of you for the love you have shown me during these five years.”

Griezmann announcing his Atletico Madrid departure

Key stat: Created more chances (74) than any other Atleti player in La Liga last season.

Could it happen? Rumours regarding a move to Barcelona for Griezmann have been rumbling on a couple of years now and, following his controversial departure announcement, have only gained momentum. Reports suggest the Blaugrana could have a deal signed and sealed by next week. Barca want Griezmann, Griezmann wants Barca. There could be no stopping this one.