Deadline day, that, biannual festival of desperation and nonsense, is almost upon us, and that means, well, lots of desperation and nonsense on the grapevine. Let’s start with Manchester United, who have been linked with every Tom, Dick and they still can’t sell Harry. According to tomorrow’s chip paper, United will sign at least two of the following players before the transfer window closes: Pierre-Emile Højbjerg, Sergio Reguilón, Luke Thomas, Benny from Crossroads, Rico Henry, Marc Cucurella, Paul Calf, Altay Bayindir, Billy Dane and Ryan Gravenberch.
Chelsea’s vague plan to sign every competent footballer on planet Earth under the age of 24 will continue with a move for Arsenal’s Emile Smith Rowe. They are also reportedly interested in the Barcelona pair of Ferran Torres and Raphinha, although the latter is 26 and therefore would be a bit of a short-term signing.
Bayern Munich would quite like to take the veteran defender Trevoh Chalobah, 24, off Chelsea’s hands, and they are also considering a loan offer for Manchester United’s Scott McTominay.
West Ham, who still have eyes for McTominay, are planning to sign the Corinthians striker Yuri Alberto, just in case Michail Antonio ever stops running.
Al-Ittihad still want Mo Salah and Joe Gomez, though Liverpool are loth to talk turkey. Nottingham Forest have been quiet, too darn quiet, in the market this summer and would like to make partial amends by signing Wilfred Ndidi from Leicester. They’re also interested in the Bologna midfielder Nicolás Domínguez, with Remo Freuler keen to move in the opposite direction.
Leicester could also lose Kelechi Iheanacho to Wolves, who have been seduced by his ability to score actual goals.
Leeds want to rescue the Spurs full-back Djed Spence from premature anonymity with a season-long loan deal. And finally, a similar deal will allow Romelu Lukaku to nestle in the warm embrace of José Mourinho at Roma.