Cristiano Ronaldo’s move to Juventus rocked the Mill’s world in more ways than one. For starters, it looked set to give this short, but still oh so long, summer transfer window its headline move in mid-July. Also, it left Ronaldo and Lionel Messi floating around in different leagues, separated after nine long years, free from their constant, suffocating rivalry. It could be quite nice, thought the Mill. And now, this.
Internazionale sense that Serie A might finally be back in vogue, and want to get a piece of that action by triggering Messi’s €700m (£622m) Barcelona release clause. That’s according to Tuttosport, whose latest edition ought to come with a sachet of salt attached. It does at least feature a quote from, er, Inter sponsors Pirelli, whose head honcho Marco Tronchetti Provera said: “I hope that Suning [Inter’s owners] can make a huge signing. Messi? How can you say no to Messi?”
Not content with tricking a nation of desperate England fans with a vague Instagram post back in May, Leverkusen forward Leon Bailey is getting Manchester United and Chelsea fans excited with rumours of a Premier League move. Both clubs are also keeping tabs on Bayern’s £62m midfielder Thiago Alcântara, while José Mourinho weighs up whether to stick with Anthony Martial or twist with Frankfurt’s Ante Rebic.
Roma are totally over Malcom, who chose to join Barcelona instead, and rather than spending their day sobbing and scrolling through the Brazilian’s social media, are moving on. Bailey, Suso and Marseille’s Florian Thauvin are at the top of their list as they mull over legal action against Bordeaux after the failed transfer of Malcom, who they are so over.
Staying in Italy – it’s so hot right now – and Milan are making eyes at Antonio Conte, who may get one over on Chelsea by luring Gonzalo Higuaín to the San Siro for £57m. Back in the Premier League, and Fulham look set to continue their wad-waving contest with fellow newcomers Wolves. Having picked up Besiktas goalkeeper Fabri for £5m, they’re chasing 2014’s André Schürrle and Celtic defender Dedryck Boyata. Besiktas could fill the gap between their goalposts with Simon Mignolet.
Pep Guardiola is not prepared to indulge the Mill for a second, ruling out a move for Juventus’ Miralem Pjanic. Manchester City missed out on Jorginho but Guardiola believes he has enough cover for Fernandinho in the form of Ilkay Gündogan, Fabian Delph and youngster Claudio Gomes, who has wandered in from PSG.
Finally, whose judgment to back – Sheffield United’s Chris Wilder, who has walked away tutting from Ipswich’s £8m asking price for Martyn Waghorn, or Derby’s Frank Lampard, who is fetching his bank details?