Power Ranking the Week's 20 Hottest Transfer Rumours: Yaya Toure Wants out
Bleacher Report presents a power ranking of the 20 hottest transfer rumours, news and signings.
The rumours will be ranked according to name recognition—the less identifiable the rumoured player is, the lower the rumour will be ranked and vice versa.
20. Julian Speroni
Crystal Palace goalkeeper Julian Speroni will be offered a new contract, per the Croydon Advertiser.
Speroni has been with Palace since 2004 and has the choice to exercise his Bosman right to a free transfer.
If Speroni opts out, Wayne Hennessey will inherit the No. 1 position.
19. Thorgan Hazard
Liverpool are weighing up the idea of signing Chelsea's Thorgan Hazard, the younger brother of Eden, on a loan deal, per Simon Jones at the Daily Mail.
He begin his professional at Lens and signed for Chelsea not long after his brother.
Thorgan had a breakout season on loan at Zulte Waregem as illustrated in a banner: "Arrived as little brother of [Eden]... leaving as our golden boy."
Chelsea should loan Thorgan to Everton or a bottom-tier Premier League team rather than Liverpool.
Not only did Victor Moses waste a season on loan at Liverpool, the thought of giving the Reds another weapon in Thorgan is foolhardy.
18. Saul Niguez
Everton are in the running to sign Saul Niguez from Atletico Madrid, per Greg O'Keeffe at the Liverpool Echo.
Saul had a mixed season on loan at Rayo Vallecano. While he started 34 La Liga games, which was beneficial to his development, he had some horrific displays out of position at centre-back.
He is a rash tackler and prone to giving the ball away, so playing him at the back was a terrible idea.
He is a better midfielder, but still a raw prospect.
17. William Carvalho
Sporting Lisbon defensive midfielder William Carvalho has reaffirmed his willingness to stay at the Portuguese club amid interest from Manchester United.
"I am a Sporting Lisbon player until June 2018," William said, per SIC (h/t Sky Sports). "When I return from the national team, I'll be back training at Lisbon."
With Louis van Gaal now managing United, the summer transfer targets will likely be from the Eredivisie, Bundesliga and La Liga.
16. Stefan De Vrij
Stefan de Vrij is expected to move from Feyenoord to Lazio, per Gerrit van Leeuwen at Sky Sports.
De Vrij outshone Joris Mathijsen, Bruno Martins Indi and Terence Kongolo at the back for Feyenoord.
At 22 years of age, De Vrij already has four seasons of 30 total games or more—a body of work that will stand him in good stead moving forward.
15. Serge Aurier
Toulouse defender Serge Aurier has linked himself to Arsenal.
"It is true that I would be a bit disappointed to stay in Toulouse after a season like this one. I want to try something else," Aurier said, per Sky Sports. "You can't really say no to Arsenal."
Aurier has played as a right wing-back in a 3-5-2 and as a centre-back in a back three.
He has scored six times and created six goals, so he has potential to transition into a wide attacking midfielder.
14. Pierre-Michel Lasogga
Newcastle United are targeting Hertha Berlin centre-forward Pierre-Michel Lasogga, per John Richardson at the Daily Express.
Lasogga spent the season on loan at Hamburg and scored 13 goals from 20 Bundesliga games.
Hamburg want to keep him while Hertha see him as a successor to Borussia Dortmund-bound Adrian Ramos, so it will be a complicated situation for Newcastle.
13. Ravel Morrison
Swansea City are planning a £3.75 million bid for West Ham United's Ravel Morrison, per Tom Hopkinson at the Mirror.
Signing Morrison would be akin to the Swans buying Jonjo Shelvey from Liverpool. Shelvey has flashed world-class moments for Swansea, and he is better in an advanced position than as a pivot.
How will Morrison and Shelvey fit in the same starting XI? Both are high-maintenance players in need guidance and support.
Morrison had issues at West Ham hence being loaned out to Queens Park Rangers.
He has immense talent, so he and the West Ham management need to compromise on their differences if they are to have a future together.
12. Stephan Lichtsteiner
Chelsea are willing to make a £6.5 million move for Juventus right wing-back Stephan Lichtsteiner, per talkSPORT.
Lichtsteiner is most comfortable in a 3-5-2 formation where he can run up and down the flank knowing he is covered by the right-sided centre-back, be it is Andrea Barzagli or Martin Caceres.
Lichtsteiner registered eight assists as Juventus won 33 of their 38 league games en route to the Serie A title.
11. Luke Shaw
Southampton left-back Luke Shaw will arrive at Manchester United for £30 million, per Colin Harvey at the Daily Star.
Shaw will only justify his £30 million price tag if he plays at a world-class standard for a decade.
His impressive form for Southampton forced seasoned footballer Danny Fox to leave for Nottingham Forest.
At 18 years of age, Shaw is heading for the top, but you can never be sure how a £30 million burden can play on a teenager's mind.
10. Adam Lallana
Southampton will only sell Adam Lallana to Liverpool for £25 million, per Neil Jones at the Liverpool Echo.
Is Lallana a good player? Yes. He can use both feet, has a high football IQ, technically brilliant and is in career-best form.
He scored nine goals and created six more as he drove Southampton's attack to a joint-best finish in the Premier League.
But the notion of spending £25 million on a rotation player is absurd.
A cost-effective option for Liverpool would be to give Suso a chance.
9. Thibaut Courtois
Chelsea's Atletico Madrid loanee Thibaut Courtois once again made it clear he will not be Petr Cech's deputy.
"He [Cech] is one of the best goalkeepers in the world so I think putting him and me in the same team is not the healthiest thing in the world," Courtois said, per Jeremy Wilson at the Telegraph. "Nobody will be happy to play in only the League Cup or FA Cup."
Courtois is also in the unusual situation where his loan club, Atleti, are a better team than his parent club, Chelsea.
Atleti are La Liga champions and will compete in the UEFA Champions League final against Real Madrid on 24 May.
8. Stephan El Shaarawy
AC Milan forward Stephan El Shaarawy's agent and brother Manuel El Shaarawy has cast doubt over his client's future at the Rossoneri.
"Will [El Shaarawy's] future be at Milan? We'll have to wait and see what the club decides on the market," Manuel said, per Football Italia. "He has always been a Milan fan, so the intention is to stay, but we need to evaluate all the situations."
El Shaarawy is in the process of rebuilding his career after a breakout 2012-13 campaign.
He only made six league appearances in an injury-hit season last time out and was not selected for Italy's FIFA World Cup squad.
7. Aaron Ramsey
Arsenal box-to-box midfielder Aaron Ramsey is being targeted by Bayern Munich, per Garry Doolan at the Daily Star.
Here is a quick summary of Ramsey's progress at Arsenal:
Wunderkind → sympathetic figure → scapegoat → important role player → complete midfielder.
His transformation gives hope to maligned Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley.
Ramsey has turned into such a complete footballer that he would fit in at any club. Instead of Bayern, how about Real Madrid, where he can link up with fellow Welshman Gareth Bale?
Thankfully for Arsenal, Ramsey does not have an agent called Dimitry Seluk.
6. Mats Hummels
Manchester United have not approached Borussia Dortmund centre-back Mats Hummels, according to his agent and father Herman Hummels.
"I know Louis van Gaal from his time at Bayern Munich," Herman said, per Warren Haughton at talkSPORT. "He's [Van Gaal has] not contacted me about Mats moving to Manchester [United] though."
The issue with Hummels is his tendency to switch off at inopportune moments.
5. Bacary Sagna
Arsenal right-back Bacary Sagna has agreed a £140,000-a-week deal at Manchester City, per David Woods at the Daily Star.
A 31-year-old who has suffered two leg-breaks and is not expected to usurp first-choice right-back Pablo Zabaleta getting £140,000 a week is maddening.
It would be a business choice from Sagna, given he would be earning more and playing less.
4. Arjen Robben and 3. Toni Kroos
Bayern Munich right winger Arjen Robben and central midfielder Toni Kroos will move to Manchester United to kick-start the Louis van Gaal era, per Chris Wheeler at the Daily Mail.
Yes to Kroos, no to Robben.
The Dutchman is 30 years of age, has a history of breaking down and, in my opinion, a better target would be Xherdan Shaqiri.
2. Ashley Cole
Ashley Cole is considering "lucrative offers from Monaco and Real Madrid," per John Percy at the Telegraph.
Real would be the smarter choice for Cole, given Fabio Coentrao and Marcelo are injury prone and Monaco left-back Layvin Kurzawa is emerging as one of the best left-backs in Europe.
1. Yaya Toure
Yaya Toure's agent Dimitry Seluk has continued his vendetta against Manchester City by threatening to take his client away from the Premier League champions.
"It's very strange that [the City] staff don't shake hands and say congratulations on your birthday. Yaya is upset," Seluk said, per Sky Sports. "Many clubs would be interested in him. There would be no problems finding a job."
Do City need to? No. Toure receives a £210,000 birthday present from the club every week.
City's front office probably made a negative first impression on Seluk because he has been discrediting the club for years.
"If Barcelona do not like Yaya, there are eight clubs, the most important in the world, who are interested in signing him," Seluk said in 2009, per RAC-1 (h/t the Telegraph). "He will not go to Manchester City. He would sign for a more important club."
The root of Seluk's hostility towards City may be related to money.
"Everything has changed with City," Seluk said in 2010, per RAC-1 (h/t the Guardian). "They talk a lot but then afterwards they don't appear to be a rich club but rather a bankrupt one."
The implication being City probably baulked at Seluk's demands.
What exactly is Seluk trying to achieve?
Statistics via WhoScored.com