Transfer Gossip: Liverpool battling Newcastle with £20m midfielder bid to succeed; £40m Arsenal star mooted in Juventus swap despite ‘genuine’ Prem interest

Boca Juniors midfielder Alan Varela

Liverpool and Newcastle are sizing up an Argentine midfielder amid talk a £20m bid will succeed, while a £40m-rated Arsenal star has ‘genuine interest’ from a Premier League side, though is being linked with joining Juventus in a high profile swap – both in Wednesday’s Transfer Gossip.


The Reds and Magpies are both mulling moves for the next major star to come out of Argentina, and a report claims a bid of around £20m will secure the coup.

Liverpool’s need for midfield reinforcements this summer is crystal clear. Arthur Melo will return to Juventus when his loan expires, while Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will both leave as free agents.

Jude Bellingham remains Jurgen Klopp’s primary midfield target, though the arrivals cannot stop at just one.

Newcastle, meanwhile, are in desperate need of greater strength in depth if they’re to survive adding a European campaign to their fixture list next season.

Eddie Howe boasts a formidable strongest eleven, though the quality deeper within his squad is sorely lacking.

Now, Football Insider report both Liverpool and Newcastle have converged on a player walking a similar journey to Chelsea’s £106.8m signing, Enzo Fernandez.

Boca Juniors midfielder, Alan Varela, is the man in question, with the 21-year-old seemingly primed for big things.

Varela plays primarily in a defensive midfield position and was reportedly among the candidates to replace Fernandez at Benfica after Chelsea swooped in January.

Varela ultimately remained in Argentina, though he’s unlikely to stay in his home country for long.

Boca have already ‘fielded multiple enquiries’ for Varela, including from Bournemouth in the last winter window.

Liverpool and Newcastle are both scouting the player and it’s claimed a bid of between £16m-£20m will be enough to make Boca sing.

From the player’s perspective, Varela is deemed ‘keen’ to test himself with a step up in class and would especially relish a move to the Premier League.

Varela signed a new contract with Boca as recently as August of last year. However, it’s indicated that was a simple case of Boca protecting their investment ahead of a future sale that may well come in the summer of 2023.


The future of Arsenal left-back Kieran Tierney has been debated by a trusted source who’s run the rule over a Juventus swap and ‘genuine interest’ from an EPL side.

Tierney, 25, has fallen down the pecking order since Oleksandr Zinchenko arrived on the scene.

The Scotland international remains a high level performer when fit and on the field, though those instances have become increasingly rare of late.

Tierney has been heavily linked with Newcastle and speaking to Caught Offside, reporter Ben Jacobs termed their interest “genuine”.

Monaco and Aston Villa are others in the mix, though those moves seem rather more fanciful at this stage.

A shock swap with Juventus involving Italy international Manuel Locatelli has also been floated. The Gunners are hunting further additions in the engine room at season’s end and Arsenal enquired into the possibility of signing Locatelli last summer.

Providing a comprehensive update on all things Tierney – including Arsenal’s new £35m-£40m price tag – Jacobs said: “Tierney held face-to-face talks with Arteta to better understand his future and was encouraged to fight for his place. So an exit is not guaranteed.

“Even Arteta is still undecided whether to let him go, but it will also come down to whether Tierney is satisfied to be a squad player.

“Arsenal would demand a fee in excess of the £25m they paid Celtic in 2019. £35m-£40m is probably the starting point, especially given Tierney is healthily contracted until 2026. Let’s not forget he was Real Madrid-linked for £50m only a year ago.

“Newcastle’s interest is genuine. Left-back is an area Eddie Howe knows he needs to strengthen. I am told Tierney ideally wants European football still, which should rule out Aston Villa despite some links.

“Villa boss Unai Emery was the manager who brought Tierney to Arsenal, so it’s natural he’s keeping tabs on the situation. Keep an eye on Monaco as well, especially if Caio Henrique leaves. There are suitors tracking the Brazilian despite him signing a new deal last summer until 2027.

“Nothing has been discussed with Juventus despite suggestions Tierney could be offered as part of a swap deal for Manuel Locatelli.

“Arsenal enquired about Locatelli last summer but were told he wanted to stay at Juventus. Nothing has changed. Juve’s obligation to buy kicks in this summer and even if forced to sell players, Locatelli isn’t one they want to lose.”

If Jacobs is correct, Tierney’s likeliest exit route at this stage appears to be a move up north to join the Newcastle revolution at St. James’ Park.


Liverpool and Arsenal have been handed a timely boost if they still retain interest in Wolves ace Ruben Neves after a report in Spain cleared the way for a summer switch within England.

Neves, 26, has been the one constant in Wolves midfield since their return to the Premier League in 2018. However, with a contract expiring in 2024 and no extension on the horizon, his days at Molineux appear to be numbered.

Liverpool and Arsenal have both been heavily linked with Neves in the past. The Reds were put in the mix by the Sun as recently as yesterday when detailing three Premier League-based midfielders being sized up.

Barcelona too are known admirers of Neves, but per the Spanish press, have pulled out the race.

The main reason, per the report, is due to Neves not suiting manager Xavi’s new formation that includes a double pivot. Neves is viewed as a player who’ll excel either side of a midfield three – a formation Jurgen Klopp has utilised since moving to Merseyside.

With Barcelona out of the picture, the chances of Neves remaining in England if and when he does leave Wolves have swelled.