Football transfer rumours: Arsenal's Olivier Giroud to Chelsea?

Barry Glendenning on 26 January 2018

Unable to get a start in a Real Madrid team that is already 19 points off the pace in La Liga, Mateo Kovacic could be offered a change of scenery by José Mourinho, who has just signed a new contract of his own at Manchester United. Despite his inability to impress Zinedine Zidane, the Croatian midfielder could be offered a deal by Manchester United, who see him as a possible heir apparent to Michael Carrick, who is not getting any younger. Having made three appearances in Mourinho’s first team in the first half of this season, United’s 20-year-old defender Axel Tuanzebe has joined Championship promotion challengers Aston Villa on loan.

Reports from Germany say Arsenal’s attempts to sign Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Borussia Dortmund have hit a snag and a deal is increasingly unlikely to be made this month despite the occasionally petulant 28-year-old Gabon striker having done his best to incinerate his bridges with the German club. What this means for Olivier Giroud is anyone’s guess, but tabloid reports in England suggest his is the latest name to pop up in Chelsea’s increasingly entertaining quest to sign somebody tall. Mainz defender Abdou Diallo had also been linked with a move to Arsenal, but that particular German club’s sporting director, Rouven Schroder, insists the 21-year-old is “not for sale”.

Despite West Ham’s increasingly long injury list, Reece Oxford looks likely to return to Borussia Mönchengladbach for the rest of the season, despite being recalled by David Moyes at Christmas and playing in the Hammers’ FA Cup third-round win against Shrewsbury. A couple of days ago, the German club upset a few humourless, over-sensitive West Ham fans with a mildly amusing tweeted video of the teenager on a driving range with the caption “Wrong club perhaps, Reece Oxford?” Their sporting director Max Eberl has since told reporters “it looks very good that we can take him on loan again”.

Diafra Sakho is another man who could be heading for the West Ham exit door, having told the club he wants to leave. Ligue1 side Rennes looks to be his likely destination, even if it would be more fun if he teamed up with Mamadou Sakho and Bakary Sako at Crystal Palace. West Ham boss David Moyes is hoping to bring Fulham’s captain the Scotland midfielder Tom Cairney to the London Stadium and has also targeted Norwich City’s 21-year-old midfielder James Maddison, who is valued at £12m.

Crystal Palace want Lille defender Ibrahim Amadou, but have had two bids for the 24-year-old central defender rejected. Elsewhere in London, sightings of the lesser spotted Paris Saint-Germain winger Lucas Moura have been reported, if not confirmed. The Brazilian, who is anxiously seeking a move before the January window closes, was apparently seen at a meeting with Tottenham Hotspur chairman Daniel Levy.

Everton outcast Sandro Ramírez has told his employers he wants to return to Spain and Everton are unlikely to stand in his way as long as they get a fair price for him. The Liverpool Echo says Everton will sanction a loan move for the forward, but any club interested would have to pay a fee of around £2m and cover Sandro’s wages of £120,000 per week.

And finally, Sunderland’s efforts to cancel the £70,000 contract of midfielder Jack Rodwell and release him back into the wild on a free transfer have come unstuck after Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem cancelled a trial to run the rule over the midfielder for vague and unspecified “organisational reasons”.

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