Football Features

Lescott unknowingly out of retirement? The biggest transfer rumours from the past week

By Chris Smith

Transfer news: Latest rumours and reports from the past week | Squawka

Published: 17:24, 2 December 2020

Can you believe we’re only a month away from the January transfer window opening?

Such has been the nature of 2020, it feels like just yesterday we were writing up the headlines for James Rodriguez’s move to Everton or awaiting news on Edinson Cavani’s switch to Manchester United.

Well, clubs from the Premier League to La Liga and beyond have now had plenty of time to take a look at the squads at their disposal. Do the title challengers in Serie A need more firepower? Should the Bundesliga strugglers need to tighten up at the back?

Here’s a look at some of the biggest transfer news from the past week.

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Joleon Lescott to reverse retirement?

Did you know Joleon Lescott has reportedly come out of retirement to join Spanish Tercera Division side, Racing Murcia? No? Turns out he didn’t either!

“There’s been an offer for me to go and take part in a game in Spain, which I’m exploring,” Lescott said on BBC Radio 5 Live recently.

“By next week I should know whether it’s genuine. I didn’t know I’d signed — I’d had a conversation. It appears I’m coming out of retirement but I’d be participating in one game – that would be it.”

As he stated, Lescott will potentially be playing in one match for Murcia (their Copa del Rey first-round match against La Liga side Levante in December) with the Spanish side hoping the former England international will help boost their relevance and international recognition.

A club statement read: “This first and historic signing allows the Racing Murcia project to be known internationally and to give relevance to a squad practically made up of players from the city of Murcia and the towns of the region.

“In the coming days, the club will announce other star players and professionals who will help the team achieve its goals, both in the league and in the Copa del Rey.”

Samuel Eto’o was also linked with a move to Murcia last month and with the club promising more action, you’d better watch this space!

Eriksen’s Inter spell to come to a premature end?

Christian Eriksen fought hard to get his £16.9m-move from Tottenham to Inter Milan in January 2020 but, after less than a year, things just haven’t worked out and it the Denmark international is regualrly being linked with the San Siro exit door.

Eriksen managed just three goals and three assists across all competitions last season following his move to Italy while this season, he’s yet to be involved in a goal at all in Serie A and Champions League play, having made a combined nine appearances in both.

Despite admitting Eriksen has been a “functional” part of Antonio Conte’s tactical revolution, Inter president Giuseppe Marotta has appeared to confirm that both parties may opt to cut their losses in January.

“If by January Eriksen has played little, he will himself ask to leave,” Marotta told Sky in Italy.

“We have to do it without any controversy from one side or the other, simply by considering it as a positive transfer move that has not been functioning for our technical-tactical needs.

“Will Eriksen be useful for this January’s transfer window? Functional is the most correct term. It happens. Football history is full of cases like this; that there are players who turn out not to be functional to a guideline in the system of play. It is up to the manager to evaluate this.

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“Last January, we grabbed an opportunity; we signed the player for €20m, and he is a very good player. Then some difficulties can exist, but the manager has the right and the duty to pick the 11 players who give him more guarantee.

“Any ideas for his replacement? We always look at opportunities. It is not easy to find solutions that are suitable for us.”

Eriksen has also recently been linked with a shock move to Tottenham’s north London rivals, Arsenal, who would reportedly send Swiss midfielder Granit Xhaka the other way.

A Sergio Aguero replacement?

Sergio Aguero is an absolute legend at Manchester City, up there with the likes of David Silva and Vincent Kompany among the club’s best-ever players. However, at 32 years of age, he’s not getting any younger and City’s struggles without Aguero (who has played just four times this season due to knee problems) have only further highlighted their need for a long-term replacement.

Fellow Argentine Lautaro Martinez has long been touted as that very replacement and, according to the Mirror, he is now upping the ante with current club Inter Milan.

According to the report, Martinez has told the Italian giants they must give him a significant pay rise in order to keep him at the San Siro and out of City’s crosshairs, despite having an extended period left to run on his contract.

Martinez has generally been a superb strike partner for Romelu Lukaku at Inter and this season alone he has managed six goals and two assists across 13 Serie A and Champions League appearances combined.

The forward’s work rate would offer Pep Guardiola with a great pressing weapon, while he is capable of finding the net both in the air and with his feet, meaning City would have an array of options when building their attacks.

Chelsea leading the chase for David Alaba?

This is a transfer battle that could escalate into a full-blown war.

We’ve known for some time now that David Alaba is keen to leave Bayern Munich and according to reports, his agent is going to offer him out to a number of clubs should the Austrian defender reject a central renewal with the German and European champions.

Everyone from Liverpool to Real Madrid has been linked with Alaba in recent months but one name which seems to be rising to the top of the pecking order is Chelsea. On paper, the Blues tick all the boxes: they’re in the Champions League, financially powerful, need defensive reinforcements and have title ambitions year on year.

Spanish outlet AS believe Frank Lampard is a huge admire of Alaba and that Chelsea will submit an offer which would put them in pole position to sign the 28-year-old, who would undoubtedly offer proven quality to their defence, which is currently being held together by the 36-year-old Thiago Silva.