LIVE Transfer Talk: Barcelona closing in on Franck Kessie deal

The 2022 January transfer window is closed, but there's still plenty of gossip swirling about who's moving where. Transfer Talk brings you all the latest buzz on rumours, comings and goings and, of course, done deals!

TOP STORY: Kessie could be bound for Camp Nou

Barcelona are moving closer to signing AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie this summer, according to Sport.

Kessie, 25, is out of contract at the end of the season and has already told the Rossoneri that he will not be extending his five-year stay at San Siro.

The Ivory Coast international's situation has also been monitored by Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain, while sources told ESPN's James Olley in December that Tottenham Hotspur were planning to make an lucrative offer for him to sign a pre-contract agreement.

However, Sport reports that over the past month talks between Kessie and Barcelona have been progressing well, and that each round of negotiations brings the two parties closer to an agreement.

Kessie, who spent two years on loan at Milan from Atalanta before joining them permanently for €25 million in 2019, has made 163 Serie A appearances for the club and scored 34 league goals

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21.28 GMT: Paris Saint-Germain are keeping tabs on Vannes forward Diedry Kouassi, reports Foot Mercato. The 21-year-old forward impressed in a 4-0 Coupe de France loss to PSG in January, and it is reported that the Ligue 1 club could now be prepared to offer him a professional contract with the intention of loaning him out to a Ligue 2 side to garner more experience.

20.55 GMT: Manchester United have spent plenty of time scouting Sporting CP midfielder Joao Palhinha this season, but they are now facing competition for his signature from other clubs in the Premier League, reports Record. Tottenham Hotspur, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Newcastle United are all said to be interested in the Portugal international whose contract includes a €60m release clause, although the Lisbon club are said to be looking for a minimum transfer fee of €30m.

20.22 GMT: Lazio have made Alessio Romagnoli their number one transfer target for the summer as Maurizio Sarri is prioritising defensive reinforcements, according to Gazzetta dello Sport. The 27-year-old centre-back was reported to be in contract talks with AC Milan and open to remain at the San Siro, but as those discussions have stalled, other clubs are now on alert.

20.05 GMT: A possible contract extension for LAFC's Carlos Vela is on the table, reports ESPN's Taylor Twellman. According to the commentator, negotiations are ongoing between the two parties regarding a new deal that would run for 18 to 24 months, beginning once his current terms end this summer.

19.49 GMT: The race for the signature of Chelsea centre-back Andreas Christensen looks to now be between two clubs, with Bayern Munich and Barcelona locked in negotiations with the player's representatives over a potential summer free transfer, writes Ekrem Konur.

The 25-year-old Denmark international's contract expires at the end of the season, with negotiations between the player and club having ground to a halt some time ago. Christensen recently revealed that he would not sign for a Premier League rival, strengthening the suggestion that he's preparing for a switch to either Germany or Spain.

19.16 GMT: Moise Kean is still likely to leave Juventus in the summer despite scoring in the 3-2 win over Empoli on Saturday, writes Calciomercato. The 22-year-old forward has been on the radar of Paris Saint-Germain -- where he spent last season on loan, scoring 13 goals in 22 league appearances -- and it is reported that the Ligue 1 club remain a potential option for him in the summer.

18.43 GMT: Napoli forward Victor Osimhen has caught the attention of clubs across Europe with his goal-scoring form in Serie A this season, but the transfer fee the Neapolitan club could command in any deal is dissuading teams from making an approach, according to the Star. Napoli reportedly are looking for a fee of around £100m for the 23-year-old Nigeria international who has scored 11 goals from 17 starts, and it is reported that Manchester United are ready to switch focus in their pursuit after initially keeping a close eye on him.

18.10 GMT: Parma have announced that goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has signed a new two-year contract with the club. After returning to his boyhood club last summer, Buffon has made 22 appearances in Serie B this season, and this new deal will keep the former World Cup winner with Italy at Parma until he's 46.

17.37 GMT: Jonathan David wants to leave Lille in the summer, according to Sky Sport Germany. The 22-year-old Canada forward wants to join a club in the Champions League, with Lille expected to demand a transfer fee of up to €55m. David has been on the radar of Newcastle United, although the Premier League club are not in contact regarding a deal, and that transfer fee reportedly is too rich for interested Bundesliga outfits.

17.04 GMT: The LA Galaxy are ready to offer Sergio Ramos a route out of Paris Saint-Germain as the former Real Madrid captain continues to struggle to find form at Parc des Princes, reports Foot Mercato. The 35-year-old centre-back has made just four appearances for PSG this season, amid numerous fitness issues, and the Ligue 1 club reportedly is ready to cut ties before his contract expires in the summer of 2023.

16.31 GMT: Kylian Mbappe gave a hint that he may yet remain at Paris Saint-Germain beyond this season by admitting he would like to become the club's all-time top goal scorer.

Mbappe is a long-term target for Real Madrid and will be a free agent at the end of the season when his contract expires.

The 21-year-old scored twice in PSG's 3-1 win over Saint-Etienne on Saturday, and in doing so drew level with Zlatan Ibrahimovic's tally of 156 goals for the club.

The only player ahead of that duo is Edinson Cavani, who scored 200 goals for the club before leaving to join Manchester United in 2020.

"I just need to catch up with Cavani and that is something that cannot be ignored," Mbappe said after the Saint-Etienne match. "Let's see what happens."

15.39 GMT: Zlatan Ibrahimovic has scored eight goals in 19 appearances for AC Milan this season. Has he done enough to earn another contract?


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14.41 GMT: Robert Lewandowski is yet to be contacted by Bayern Munich over renewing his contract, Bild reports.

Lewandowski, 33 is one of three long-serving players whose contracts are due to expire at the end of next season. However, while goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and forward Thomas Muller have both been given indications that new deals are in the offing, that is not the case for Bayern's star striker.

When it was put to him in a recent interview with Sky that Bayern wanted to extend his stay, Lewandowski responded: "I'm hearing that for the first time!"

Bild reports that, aside from Lewandowski's age, Bayern are doing all they can to keep their options open for when Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland becomes available.

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13.29 GMT: AC Milan forward Rafael Leao has given a strong indication that he will commit his future to the club.

Leao, 22, has scored 11 goals for the club this season, including five in his last eight games in all competitions.

The Portugal international had reportedly already agreed a new four-year contract with the Rossoneri, but that deal has not been signed yet due to an ongoing legal dispute over the termination of his contract at former club Sporting CP.

However, in an excerpt of an interview with DAZN which has been released, Leao said: "I want to make history here, I want my name to stay in the Milan museum one day."

12.32 GMT: Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick has significant doubts about Cristiano Ronaldo's future as the club's first-choice centre-forward, the Manchester Evening News reports.

Ronaldo has scored just one goal in his last 10 appearances, with that run including his longest goal drought at club level in more than a decade. The 37-year-old again drew a blank in Saturday's 0-0 draw against Watford.

The MEN reports that Rangnick, who is due to move into a consultancy role at Old Trafford when his interim coach stint ends in the summer, has major reservations over Ronaldo's status as the spearhead of United's attack going into next season.

- Breaking down Ronaldo's worst goal drought in over a decade

11.38 GMT: Former Italy international Gianluigi Buffon is set to sign a new contract at Parma which will keep him at the club past his 46th birthday, sources told ESPN's Andrew Cesare Richardson.

Buffon, who started his career with Parma as a 17-year-old in 1995, is Italy's most capped male international footballer with 176 appearances.

He left Parma to join Juventus in 2001 for a then world-record transfer fee for a goalkeeper of €52 million ($58.3m) and, after a successful two decades with the Turin club, he returned to his former side following their relegation to Serie B in 2021.

Buffon has played in 22 of Parma's 26 league matches this term and sources have told ESPN he will pen a new contract until 2024.

The 44-year-old's short-term plans will be to help his side return to Serie A, though that may be difficult this season as they are 13th in the table and with only an outside chance of making the playoffs.

10.42 GMT: Villarreal coach Unai Emery insists that Yeremy Pino, a target for Real Madrid, is still learning despite the young forward scoring four goals in Sunday's 5-1 rout of Espanyol (stream the replay on TSPN+ in the U.S.).

Yeremi became the first Villarreal player to have scored four goal in a league game when he scored a hat trick before half-time and added another goal in the second half.

The 19-year-old helped Villarreal win the Europa League last season in his first year with the senior squad, and also earned a spot in Spain's national team.

Real Madrid were among the clubs that had shown interest in him before he signed a contract in November which committed him to Villarreal until 2027 and set his release clause at €80m.

"Yeremi is 19," Emery said. "He is very matured in certain things but in others, he isn't and it's good he still maintains certain childish aspects. He is competitive, brave, he wants to get results.

"We know he is going through a learning process. He still has a lot to learn. He played a great game against Espanyol and he had played well against Juventus last week. We need the collective to have a starring role so that everyone can shine with their characteristics."

- Weekend review: Yeremi Pino becomes LaLiga's next big thing

09.46 GMT: Former United States midfielder Jesse Marsch is the leading contender to succeed Marcelo Bielsa as Leeds United manager, sources have told ESPN's Tom Hamilton.

Bielsa was sacked on Sunday after a torrid week for Leeds, first suffering a 6-0 defeat away to Liverpool on Wednesday before enduring a 4-0 loss to Tottenham Hotspur at home on Saturday in what turned out to be Bielsa's final match.

Marsch, 48, left Bundesliga side RB Leipzig by mutual consent in December, five months after taking charge, and sources said he is the No.1 candidate for the vacancy at Elland Road.

He previously won two Austrian league titles at FC Salzburg. Marsch began his managerial career at Montreal Impact in 2011 and also managed New York Red Bulls. Ralf Rangnick, now Manchester United's interim manager, employed Marsch as his assistant during his time at Leipzig.

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08.52 GMT: Real Madrid would like on-loan winger Take Kubo to be part of their squad next season, Diario AS reports, but need Vinicius Junior to be granted Spanish nationality first.

LaLiga clubs are allowed three non-European players in their squads, and Madrid's places are currently occupied by Brazilians Vinicius, Rodrygo and Eder Militao.

Vinicius began the process of seeking citizenship in 2020, with South Americans able to do so after two years of residence in Spain, but the pandemic has led to bureaucratic delays with applications.

Kubo, 20, has spent the last three seasons on loan at Real Mallorca, Getafe, Villarreal and now back at Mallorca, and according to AS has done enough this year to form part of Madrid's plans for 2022-23, if Vinicius' situation is resolved in time.

08.00 GMT: Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel believes Roman Abramovich's decision to pass stewardship to the club's trustees will "change nothing" in the day-to-day running of the club.

Abramovich announced on Saturday night his intention to take a step back from his involvement with the Blues while retaining ownership of the team he bought for £140 million in 2003. Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia and technical and performance adviser Petr Cech are responsible for running the club with Abramovich, until this weekend, retaining final sign-off on big decisions including the future of head coaches and player transfers.

Although his statement made no mention of the ongoing invasion of Ukraine, the Russian billionaire's ties with Chelsea had attracted extra scrutiny that Tuchel admitted was affecting his team's preparation for Sunday's Carabao Cup final against Liverpool.

After watching the Blues lose 11-10 on penalties at the end of 120 goal-less minutes at Wembley, Tuchel was asked for his reaction to Abramovich's move.

"For the news yesterday, I think it will change nothing for me on a daily basis. This is how I understand it. I'm in close contact with Marina and Petr Cech to the run the first team and to give my input and give my very best so we are able to win football matches. This will not change and I think it will not change with the news from yesterday."

- Carabao Cup final: Stream the replay on ESPN+ (U.S.)

PAPER GOSSIP (by Nick Judd)

- Spanish outlet Marca have been putting two and two together and controversially concluding that Barcelona star Gavi could be on his way to Real Madrid. The 17-year-old star has established himself in the Barca first team already but the club and player are yet to reach an agreement on the renewal of his contract, which runs out in June 2023. In the meantime, the Spain international's agent Ivan de la Pena has been spotted at Real Madrid's Valdebebas offices in the last few days, sparking rumours of a potential switch to Los Blancos.

- Disappointing back-to-back draws against Salernitana and Udinese have focused the minds at AC Milan, and the club are prioritising the signing of coveted defender Sven Botman in an attempt to fend off interest from Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur, according to Calciomercato. Rossoneri chiefs Paolo Maldini and Frederic Massara are liaising with Lille in an effort to close a deal for the 22-year-old before the end of the season.

- Internazionale's pursuit of Davide Frattesi continues, with Calciomercato suggesting that the Sassuolo midfielder is now their top priority. Inter manager Simone Inzaghi is keen to reinforce his midfield for the 2022-23 season, and Inter chief Giuseppe Marotta has already been in talks with Sassuolo counterpart Giovanni Carnevali about the switch. Marotta will return to try and get the deal over the line before the end of the season, with the fee believed to be the only major sticking point. Fratessi has scored two goals and added two assists this season.