Liverpool plan Mac Allister talks – TRANSFER CONFIDENTIAL

TRANSFER CONFIDENTIAL COLUMN: Liverpool plan Mac Allister talks, Newcastle scout German wonderkid Wirtz, Jude may not be the only Bellingham on the move and Lingard is still a wanted man

  • Chelsea look likely to offload academy graduate Conor Gallagher in the summer
  • Liverpool will also undergo a squad rebuild and are keen on Alexis Mac Allister
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Hello and welcome to another edition of our transfer newsletter, brought exclusively to you. 

My name is Simon Jones and, as well as writing regularly for the Daily Mail and MailOnline, I’m aiming to give you insight, news and the latest chat from across the globe on all the deals taking shape ahead of this summer’s transfer window.

It promises to be busy once again in the Premier League as the likes of Liverpool, Manchester United and Chelsea look to splash further millions in a bid to close the gap on Arsenal and Manchester City while those at risk of relegation will be in fear of the proverbial vultures preparing to swoop for their best players.

Liverpool are expected to be busy this summer as they rebuild after a disappointing season

Chelsea to offload Conor Gallagher this summer? 

Frank Lampard singled him out for special praise at the weekend but there is little evidence that Chelsea want to keep Conor Gallagher.

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After spending over £600m in the past two transfer windows, Chelsea are under scrutiny to fit within Financial Fair Play guidelines and will begin offloading players to offset their spending.

Selling homegrown talents creates the greater profit margin on the accounts and the signs are ominous for Gallagher.

He has two years left on the five year deal he signed in 2020 but, unlike with Reece James, Ben Chilwell and Mason Mount, no talks have been forthcoming over a new contract. Chelsea also accepted a £45m bid in January from Everton, where Lampard was then manager, in another clear indication they thought he was the easiest one to sell. Yet Gallagher wanted to fight for his place.

Despite scoring on Saturday, Conor Gallagher could be moved on by Chelsea in the summer

Liverpool were among ten would-be suitors to express interest in January but Mail Sport understands that there has been no recent enquiry. Gallagher would not be short of takers though with Borussia Dortmund, Brighton and Newcastle monitoring developments.

Newcastle, like Liverpool, have also checked on Mount but with Chelsea reputed to be asking over £70m for the 24-year-old, the feeling is, at that price, there will be more chance of him renewing his contract.

Chelsea insist Levi Colwill remains part of their plans, despite interest from Brighton, Liverpool and Manchester City among others, but the 20-year-old will want to continue playing regular Premier League football offering another conundrum for Todd Boehly and Co.

The Blues also face a battle to keep Levi Colwill after his impressive loan at Brighton this year

Chris Smalling is yet to extend his stay with Roma 

He may prefer a Ryvita to la dolce vita but that didn’t stop vegan Chris Smalling enjoying a dinner date with his agent James Featherstone in Rome last week.

Featherstone’s presence prompted a flurry of reports in the Italian media that a new contract has been agreed for the Roma defender but Mail Sport understands that a deal has still to be signed off.

Smalling does have an option to extend and Featherstone confirmed: ‘We are in talks with the club, and while there has always been Premier League interest in him, he is very happy here and gets on great with the coach. But we haven’t agreed anything yet. I’ve been over in Rome with the family for a break and caught up with Chris for a night. I wasn’t there for work.’

Chris Smalling could extend his stay with Roma, but he is yet to sign a new deal with the club

Marseille enter the race for Wilfried Zaha 

We know of Arsenal’s interest and the lucrative offer he received from Al Ittihad but we could be hearing ‘ooh la la’ for Wilfried Zaha in Marseille.

The French club are the latest to express a desire to sign the 30-year-old Crystal Palace winger when he becomes a free agent this summer. 

Marseille beat Troyes 3-1 on Sunday to go second in the table and ahead of Lens and Monaco in the race for Champions League qualification. Zaha wants to test himself in Europe’s top competition so Marseille could fit the bill.

Arsenal remain in the frame for Zaha as Reiss Nelson and Folarin Balogun could yet depart.

Marseille are the latest club keen on signing Wilfried Zaha when he becomes a free agent

Aston Villa to rival Brighton for Reiss Nelson 

Aston Villa have stepped in to rival Brighton for Nelson. Unai Emery was a big fan of the 23-year-old during his tenure at Arsenal and is keen to link up again. 

Villa are taking shape under the Spanish workaholic and it is proving attractive. 

They are also pulling on the strings of Hearts striker James Wilson. The 16-year-old is fancied by Leeds.

Aston Villa have joined Brighton in the race to sign 23-year-old Arsenal winger Reiss Nelson 

Liverpool plan talks for Alexis Mac Allister 

Liverpool held a recruitment meeting last week in their Fitzrovia offices in London as they collate information on transfer targets.

The Anfield club sounded out the representatives of Ryan Gravenberch at the weekend over a potential move from Bayern Munich. The Germans, who are now willing to sell Sadio ‘Rocky’ Mane, are reluctant to lose Gravenberch and rejected approaches from other clubs in January but the 20-year-old Dutch midfielder is unhappy over his playing time.

Alexis Mac Allister is another on Liverpool’s list with talks expected soon. As one agent said: ‘BRIGHTON want bingo numbers for Mac Allister and Moises Caicedo this summer and we are not talking ‘two little ducks”.

The politically correct would say it’s more ‘Wills and Kate’ or, for the older ones among us, ‘two fat ladies’. Anyway, they want a lot.

In good news for Brighton, ‘In a state’, sorry No28, Evan Ferguson is expected to confirm his new contract shortly.

Liverpool are expected to enter talks with Brighton for World Cup winner Alexis Mac Allister

Jurgen Klopp is desperate to bring midfield reinforcements into his squad in the off-season

Jude may not be the only Bellingham on the move 

Jude Bellingham isn’t the only one in his family likely to move this summer. While Europe’s elite look to prise Jude from Borussia Dortmund, his younger brother Jobe is looking to depart Birmingham City. 

The 17-year-old impressed when he came on as a substitute in their 2-1 defeat to Sunderland at the weekend and is drawing interest from clubs. Word has it their father, Mark, is studying for his agent’s exams.

Jobe Bellingham (second right) is attracting interest from many clubs after breaking through at Birmingham City and could join his brother Jude in being on the move this summer

Newcastle scout German wonderkid Florian Wirtz 

Newcastle United had scouts at Bayer Leverkusen on Thursday to see the excellent Florian Wirtz score a cracker against Union St Gilloise in their Europa League quarter final. 

Newcastle were listed among the scouts again as Leverkusen visited Wolfsburg on Sunday but 19-year-old attacking midfielder Wirtz started on the bench. 

Wirtz is regarded as one of the best talents in Germany and Leverkusen are reluctant to sell.

Newcastle are monitoring the progress of one of Germany’s hottest prospects, Florian Wirtz

Jesse Lingard is still a wanted man  

It’s fair to say Jesse Lingard hasn’t had the desired impact at Nottingham Forest. Afforded three minutes on Sunday, it wasn’t much time to make an impression against former club Manchester United. 

However, that hasn’t stopped Fenerbahce, clubs in the Middle East and Leicester City from showing tentative interest over a summer move. 

Should they beat the drop, Leicester are focusing on Lens striker Lois Openda.

Despite a disappointing spell with Nottingham Forest, Jesse Lingard still has potential suitors

Brentford reignite interest in Connor Roberts

Brentford rekindled interest in old flame Connor Roberts of Burnley.

The Wales international full-back, 27, who had a solid World Cup, has been on Brentford’s radar previously and they maintained a watching brief as he impressed during Burnley’s promotion winning season. 

Ever ready Roberts has played 56 games for club and country this season.

Brentford have continued to monitor Burnley defender Connor Roberts throughout the season

Leeds eye-up Barcelona wonderkid Abde Ezzalzouli 

Leeds United are taking a shine to Barcelona winger Abde Ezzalzouli but the 21-year-old won’t come cheap.

The Morocco international, also known as EZ Abde, has been arguably Osasuna’s best player while on loan from Barca but that has only served to bump up his value.

Barcelona need to raise cash before being allowed to make more new signings, with the likes of Manchester City’s Ilkay Gundogan in their sights. An auction could yet begin if Wolves follow up their interest in Abde.

Leeds have also been checking on young Hungary left-back Milos Kerkez at AZ Alkmaar but so have Benfica.

Leeds are interested in a move for Barcelona’s promising winger Abde Ezzalzouli this summer

Everton look to Scotland for reinforcements 

Everton are staring the Championship in the face with the lack of a true goalscorer mainly to blame. 

So club scouts took the opportunity on Friday to check out Aberdeen’s former Benfica striker ‘Duk’, aka Luis Lopes. The 23-year-old scored his 18th goal of the season in a 1-0 win. 

Everton also ran the rule over Ross County’s promising right-back Dylan Smith. The 16-year-old only left school earlier this season but could soon be studying how to replace Seamus Coleman in the coming months.

Everton have been taking a look at Aberdeen striker Luis Lopes and Ross County’s 16-year-old right-back Dylan Smith (left – making the tackle) as they look to strengthen their squad

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