Euro Paper Talk: Ratcliffe goes big to make classy France midfielder his first Man Utd signing; West Ham green light to sign 151-goal striker

Sir Jim Ratcliffe is keen to sign Monaco midfielder Youssouf Fofana for Man Utd

Sir Jim Ratcliffe is keen to sign Youssouf Fofana for Man Utd

Manchester United are going all out to sign a Monaco star in January after raising their bid, West Ham are leading the chase for a RB Leipzig striker, while a Serie A side are confident of keeping a defensive star from Liverpool’s grasp.


Manchester United’s incoming new minority shareholder Sir Jim Ratcliffe is ready to raise his club’s offer to secure the signing of Youssouf Fofana in January after receiving a glowing report from the club’s top scout.

The British billionaire is looking to make his mark at Old Trafford and will be given licence to oversee the club’s transfer incomings and outgoings once his investment is made official. Confirmation of that agreement is expected to arrive for Manchester United next week.

In the meantime, planning for the January window is already well underway – and Ratcliffe’s immediate priority will be to sign a new midfield general to replace the wantaway Casemiro.

Ratcliffe has been critical of the £70m United paid for the ageing midfielder back in summer 2022. And he reportedly hopes to cash in on the player with teams in Saudi Arabia prepared to give the Red Devils a chunk of their money back.

To that end, it was reported on Tuesday that Ratcliffe was targeting Monaco’s Fofana as a potential replacement.

United made a move to sign the Frenchman over the summer, only to see their approach turned down and Erik ten Hag instead turning his focus to Sofyan Amrabat.

Now, however, the club are ready to make a renewed push to sign him after watching the 24-year-old in action twice over the international break.

Man Utd scout wowed by Fofana

And United’s leading scout is reported to have fed back nothing but positives on the Monaco man, believing he could have an instant impact on their midfield. To that end, it’s claimed Fofana’s performance ‘left a mark’ on United’s scout having witnessed the player scoring against Greece on Tuesday to rescue a draw, with the player scoring and assisting during a 14-0 trouncing of Gibraltar on Saturday.

United had hoped a €30m (£26m) offer would do the trick, but Calciomercato now reports that interest from Juventus will see United raise their bid to €35m (£30.5m) in a bid to squeeze out the Italians and secure his signing for Ten Hag.

Monaco, for their part, would rather hold off until the summer. But Ratcliffe wants a deal done now and hopes the raised bid will secure his signing and make the 24-year-old the first major arrival of his Old Trafford reign.

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West Ham United are leading the chase for RB Leipzig forward Timo Werner, who has been cleared to leave in January. Crystal Palace and Fulham are also exploring a possible swoop for the former Chelsea attacker, who boasts 151 career goals. (SportBILD)

Bayern Munich are ready to make Leroy Sane one of their highest-ever earners in an effort to keep him out of Liverpool’s grasp. (Fabrizio Romano)

AC Milan are stepping up their push to sign Bournemouth’s Lloyd Kelly in January, with Liverpool and Tottenham also keen on the left-sided centre-half. (Tuttosport)

Manchester United are falling behind in the race to sign Porto striker Mehdi Taremi with Inter Milan looking to snap up the Iran striker in a €20m deal. (various)

Inter Milan officials are meeting with Nicolo Barella’s agent Alessandro Beltrami to discuss an extended deal for the long-term Liverpool target at the San Siro. The Italy midfielder’s current deal is due to expire in 2026. (Gazzetta dello Sport)

Aston Villa are ready to step up their interest in signing Inaki Williams, though Athletic Bilbao have made it clear they are in no mood to sell their in-form attacker, who is contracted to 2028. (Estadio Deportivo)

Manchester City are keeping tabs on Brazilian attacker Savio, with the teenager impressing while on loan at Girona from fellow City Football Group (CFG) side Troyes. (90min)

Arsenal are in talks over a deal to sign teenage Fluminense striker Matheus Reis, who has a huge €50m (£44m) exit clause in his contract. (Calciomercato)


Tottenham are considering a big January approach to sign Atalanta’s 19-year-old Italy defender Giorgio Scalvini. (Fabrizio Romano)

Uruguay goalkeeper Martin Campana has revealed his international teammate and Real Madrid star Federico Valverde turned down a multi-million wages offer to move to Saudi Arabia over the summer. (AS)

Barcelona sporting director Deco will likely have to sell at least one star name to help finance the €70m required by Atletico Madrid to turn Joao Felix’s loan into a permanent move. (Sport)

Tottenham midfielder Giovani Lo Celso has emerged as a loan option for Barcelona amid fears that teenage star Gavi will miss the rest of the season having suffered a suspected ACL tear. (Mundo Deportivo)

Bayern Munich are pushing to sign Arsenal defender Takehiro Tomiyasu in 2024, though the Gunners are keen to tie the Japan defender down to a new deal. (Sky Deutschland)

North Macedonia star Eljif Elmas is pushing to leave Napoli in January after becoming frustrated at a lack of game-time. (Calciomercato)

Wantaway Manchester United defender Raphael Varane is targeting a move to Serie A as a possible next move after making clear his plans to leave Old Trafford. (various)


Lecce insist Liverpool linked left-back Patrick Dorgu will stay with the Serie A side in January despite speculation he will be subject of a big-money approach from the Merseysiders. (Pianeta Lecce)

Patrick Dorgu

Denmark youth defender Patrick Dorgu

Nottingham Forest are ready to turn their back on Divock Origi after becoming frustrated with his lack of impact and are exploring the  signing Werder Bremen striker Marvin Ducksch in the January transfer window. (SportsBILD)

Former Juventus chief scout Matteo Tognozzi claims he narrowly missed out on signing Jude Bellingham when the current Real Madrid star was due to leave Birmingham for Borussia Dortmund in 2020. (Tuttosport)

Fenerbahce are looking to bring unhappy Atletico Madrid defender Caglar Soyuncu back to the Super Lig in January, with the former Leicester defender yet to start a game under Diego Simeone. (AS)

Juventus are in talks over an extended deal for striker Dusan Vlahovic following fresh reports linking the Serbia international with a move to Arsenal (90min)

Former Man Utd goalkeeper David De Gea will reject any approach to play in the Saudi Pro League, though is open to a move to MLS. (various)

Exclusive: Roma have signalled their intent to turn Romelu Lukaku’s loan deal from Chelsea into a permanent €40m (£35m) move in 2024.