Football notebook: Jonathan Ikone Fiorentina linked, Niko Kovac should be in Monaco in Ligue 1 and more


One last time in 2021, we’re catching up with you with some of the stories you may have missed this week with many European clubs taking advantage of the winter break to do some business before January and a return to action. From Jonathan Ikone leaving Lille OSC for Fiorentina to the massive COVID-19 outbreak in Angers SCO, we are your one-stop-shop for those elusive stories that often go unnoticed.

Our choices.

Viola add Jonathan Ikone

Lille have confirmed that 23-year-old Ikone will join Fiorentina when the winter transfer window opens on January 3 after a full deal has been reached between the two clubs. The product of Paris Saint-Germain’s youth academy is now a full-fledged French international and helped LOSC win the Ligue 1 title last season ahead of their training club.

Monaco leaves Niko Kovac

AS Monaco should make the departure of coach Niko Kovac with the formation of the principality sixth in the Ligue 1 standings. Although it is not catastrophic, the former Croatian international of German origin has been under surveillance for a long time. some time, as did athletic director Paul Mitchell.

Meanwhile, ESTAC Troyes, owned by City Football Group, also decided to part ways with Laurent Batlles with the club one point above the relegation places. The 46-year-old was closely linked with Montpellier HSC this summer after bringing the Aube side back to the Championship.

Kitchen outlet for Venezia

Venezia is getting closer to signing Michael Cuisance from Bayern Munich with the 22-year-old Frenchman who is expected to complete his move to Stadio Pier Luigi Penzo shortly. Despite a failed loan to Olympique de Marseille last season which ultimately excluded him from senior squad, his potential remains high and he will likely welcome a new start as part of a youth project.

Rafinha returns to Spain

The Brazilian international’s nightmare at PSG is over after signing a season-long loan with Real Sociedad after the 28-year-old barely featured under Mauricio Pochettino in the French capital. Will Rafinha be able to impress enough to deserve the blow definitely?

Mönchengladbach facing the exodus at the end of the season

The Bundesliga team have confirmed that Matthias Ginter and Denis Zakaria have announced their decision to leave at the end of the season when their contracts expire: “We now know who we can plan next season with and who will not be there, “said sporting director Max Eberl. “We have clarity for the second half of this season. It was important for us.”

Are the Saviors of Salernitana emerging?

Although the Serie A fighters are not yet safe, three groups based in Italy have expressed interest in the possibility of a joint offer raising the prospect of an extension of the buyout process which could see Granata fight in the Italian elite – for now – – at a price tag of around $ 17 million.

Chelsea counts the costs

UEFA Champions League title holders Chelsea have reported losses of nearly $ 197 million after the fiscal year on June 30 this year. Although turnover fell from around $ 523 million to $ 563 million, the London club said the lack of crowds due to COVID-19 and reduced player sales were the main reason losses.

Osimhen could miss CAN

Victor Osimhen has tested positive for COVID-19 for the second time, which means his eligibility for the Africa Cup of Nations is in serious doubt. The Nigeria international was due to have his cheekbone injury assessed in Napoli, but has since tested positive and must now self-isolate for at least a week.

“Therefore, local authorities have ordered Osimhen to self-isolate, and the test will be rescheduled after he tests negative and his period of isolation ends,” a statement from Napoli read. .

Meanwhile, Angers in France has confirmed an astounding 19 positive cases out of a team of 30 with staff members also testing positive. The Ligue 1 club have already requested the postponement of their Ligue 1 clash with AS Saint-Etienne while temporary measures are taken by the French Football Federation to ensure there are the fewest games postponed possible.

China declares taboo on tattoos

Finally, Chinese footballers who represent the national team were prohibited from tattooing and were advised to remove existing ones as part of a government directive. According to the Chinese sports administration body, it is strictly forbidden to internationally select players with body art at the senior and youth levels in order to set a better example for society.

Late entries

As if that weren’t enough, Kylian Mbappe returned a day earlier for the resumption of PSG training while AFC Ajax welcomed Brian Brobbey back from RB Leipzig just months after the 19-year-old took over. moved to Germany. The Dutchman and Ilaix Moriba show that despite RBL’s strong track record of rapidly developing top young talent, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.


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