Football rumours: Arsenal step up interest in Ivan Toney ahead of January window

By Sports Desk September 27, 2023

What the papers say

Arsenal are rumoured to be keen on signing Brentford forward Ivan Toney, the Mirror reports. The Gunners have been eyeing the 27-year-old and are said to be stepping up their interest ahead of the January transfer window, with Toney currently banned from all football activities until mid-January for gambling offences.

The Daily Mail reports that a sensational return to Chelsea could be on the cards for Tammy Abraham after two years at Roma as part of a swap deal for Romelu Lukaku, who is currently on loan at the Serie A club.

Manchester United may have their eyes set on German international forward Serge Gnabry from Bayern Munich, the Daily Mail reports. The Premier League club currently lack firepower without Antony and Jadon Sancho.

Social media round-upPlayers to watch

Aston Villa continue talks to extend Ollie Watkins’ contract, aiming to finalise a new deal for the England international by January according to 90min.

Nigeria midfielder Wilfred Ndidi, 26, may be gearing up for a move to Nottingham Forest or Barcelona, with interest being shown by both clubs for the Leicester midfielder.

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  • 'It's a great honour', Kompany smiles after Bayern unveiling 'It's a great honour', Kompany smiles after Bayern unveiling

    Vincent Kompany admits "it's a great honour" to have been named Bayern Munich's new head coach, and is confident "success will follow" at the Allianz Arena.

    The former Burnley boss has put pen to paper on a three-year deal with the Bundesliga giants, after succeeding the outgoing Thomas Tuchel.

    Kompany's appointment is widely regarded as a surprise one, with the former Manchester City captain unable to keep Burnley in the Premier League in 2023-24.

    Nevertheless, the Belgian now finds himself at one of Europe's biggest clubs, and cannot wait to get started.

    "I'm looking forward to the challenge of FC Bayern," he told the club's official website. "It's a great honour to be able to work for this club - FC Bayern is an institution in international football.

    "As a coach, you have to stand for what you are as a character: I love having the ball, being creative - but we also have to be aggressive and courageous on the pitch.

    "I'm now looking forward to the basics: working with the players, building a team. Once the basis is right, success will follow."

    "Vincent Kompany is the type of coach who fits in very well with FC Bayern's playing philosophy and identity," sporting director Christoph Freund added. 

    "His teams want the ball, and want to play dominant and high-intensity football. He's a young, very ambitious coach with a lot of international experience.

    "He has his finger on the pulse when it comes to the players and knows exactly what needs to happen on the pitch. He can and will give our team an enormous amount."

  • Hoping for the best: Eve on edge about players' fitness as T&T faces tight window ahead of qualifiers Hoping for the best: Eve on edge about players' fitness as T&T faces tight window ahead of qualifiers

    Having selected what he believes is the best crop of players to secure qualification to the 2026 Fifa World Cup, Trinidad and Tobago’s Head coach Angus Eve is no hoping everything will go accordingly, both where performances and player fitness is concerned.

    In fact, Eve, who named his provisional 39-player squad last Friday, would love nothing but to have his final Soca Warriors squad –when narrowed down –hit the ground running with positive results to start their Concacaf World Cup qualifying campaign against Grenada and then Bahamas on June 5 and 8 respectively. They will host Grenada at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, before visiting Bahamas a few days later.

    "These 39 players are the ones we think can give us the best chance to start off on a positive head and try to win these two matches and start off with six points in the qualifiers, one game at a time,” Eve said in a recent interview with the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) media.

    The tactician, who is aiming to host a camp between June 1 and June 3, pointed out that it was a challenge to gather the team earlier due to players’ club obligations. It is for this reason that he is hoping players will come into camp fit and ready to go, given that they will only assemble a few days before kick off.

    “Players' safety (is a concern) and all these kinds of things. It is terrible that the window starts on (June) 3rd and we have to play on the 5th, so players have to travel on the 3rd, most of the players. On the 1st and 2nd we still have players playing matches outside. We have the locally-based players playing in a final this coming week, a couple days before the game. We still have to look and see who will come through those games unscathed,” Eve shared.

    That said, Eve explained the reason behind gifting players such as Tyrese Spicer, Dantaye Gilbert and Steffen Yeates, their first senior team invitation. While Spicer, 23, and Gilbert, 19, has represented the twin island republic at the youth level, Yeates, 24, is breaking into his first national team.

    “Young Spicer has been doing tremendously well for Toronto FC. We did try to get him and [Wayne] Fredericks for the two Jamaica friendlies, but he [Spicer] had an injury at that point in time and also Fredericks had an injury in that time, so we never got them. It is a delight for us to actually have the opportunity to call him [Spicer] up,” Eve noted.

    “We have also been behind Steffen Yeates since last October. We have really been having good conversations with him, but there were some administrative issues. We think we are very close to sorting out his documents, so we wanted to put him in the training squad, so just in case that his documents come through, he will already be in the squad,” he added.

    Like Spicer and Yeates, Eve said Netherlands-based Gilbert was always a part of his plans, but he wanted to bide his time with the young midfielder.

    “We have been following Dantaye; the tricky thing about these things is that when a young player goes to Europe you want (to allow) him to settle in at his club first before you drag him out of his club. If he stays over there for three, four months and get that quality training in that high-intensity environment then he is going to be better for us when he comes back to the national team,” he ended.

    T&T Provisional squad:

    Goalkeepers: Denzil Smith (Club Sando), Aaron Enill (Prison FC), Christopher Biggette (Defence Force), Adrian Foncette (Miscellaneous Police FC).

    Defenders: Andre Raymond (unattached), Jesse Williams (Chattanooga FC—USA), Sheldon Bateau (SK Beveren—Belgium), Leland Archer (Charleston Battery—USA), Triston Hodge (Hartford Athletic—USA), Ross Russell (Terminix La Horquetta Rangers), Aubrey David (CS Cartagines—Costa Rica), Alvin Jones, Robert Primus (both Miscellaneous Police FC), Isaiah Garcia, Justin Garcia (both Defence Force), Josiah Trimmingham (Montego Bay Utd—Jamaica), Shannon Gomez (San Antonio FC—USA).

    Midfielders: Duane Muckette, Michel Poon-Angeron (both AC Port of Spain), Kevon Goddard (Defence Force), Andre Rampersad (HFX Wanderers—Canada), Kristian Lee Him (Eskilstuna), Dantaye Gilbert (Jong PSV—Netherlands), Steffen Yeates (Pacific FC—Canada), Molik Khan (Minnesota Utd II—USA), Daniel Phillips (St Johnstone FC—Scotland), Ajani Fortune (Atlanta United—USA)Matthew Woo Ling (Defence Force), Noah Powder (Northern Colorado Hailstorm—USA).

    Attackers: Kaile Auvray, Nathaniel James (both Mount Pleasant FC—Jamaica), Real Gill (Northern Colorado Hailstorm—USA), Reon Moore (Pacific FC—Canada), Malcolm Shaw (Cavalry FC), Levi Garcia (AEK Athens—Greece), Tyrese Spicer (Toronto FC—Canada), Ezekiel Kesar (Point Fortin Civic), Kevon Woodley (Morvant Caledonia Utd), Ryan Telfer (HFX Wanderers—Canada).

  • Bayern Munich confirm shock appointment of Kompany Bayern Munich confirm shock appointment of Kompany

    Bayern Munich have confirmed the appointment of Vincent Kompany as their new head coach.

    Kompany has joined Bayern on a three-year deal, and comes in as Thomas Tuchel's replacement.

    The former Manchester City captain, who began his coaching career in Belgium with Anderlecht, could not keep Burnley in the Premier League in 2023-24.

    Indeed, the Clarets were relegated following a 2-1 defeat to Nottingham Forest at Turf Moor in their penultimate match of the season.

    Yet, less than two weeks after the campaign's conclusion, Kompany has been installed as boss of one of Europe's biggest clubs. 

    The 38-year-old joins Bayern after Tuchel confirmed talks over potentially reversing the decision for him and the club to part ways, which came in February, had ended.

    Bayern lost their last game of the Bundesliga season to finish in third place, having failed to win any of the four trophies they were in contention for, seeing their dominance of Germany's top tier ended by Xabi Alonso's unbeaten Bayer Leverkusen team.

    Alonso had been Bayern's primary target, but their former midfielder has elected to stay at Leverkusen for next season.

    Bayern were also linked with Roberto De Zerbi, who has just left Brighton, and Brentford coach Thomas Frank, while they were turned down by Austria coach Ralf Rangnick. Mauricio Pochettino, who left Chelsea on Monday, was also rumoured as a potential option.

    Kompany, then, is a surprise pick, but Bayern will be hoping he rediscovers the magic touch he had during his first season at Turf Moor in 2022-23, when he guided the Clarets to promotion from the Championship, earning 101 points in the process.

    However, Kompany's possession-based, front-foot approach was badly exposed in the Premier League, with Burnley winning just five games on their way to taking 24 points as they finished 19th, going back down alongside Luton Town and Sheffield United.

    He leaves Burnley having managed 96 games, winning 41 (42.7 per cent) of those matches.

    In a statement, Burnley said they were "initially confident" of keeping Kompany at the club, but claimed "the changing dynamics of the situation made this impossible". 

    "We understand the allure and prestige of a club like Bayern Munich and respect Vincent's ambition to explore new opportunities," the statement continued. 

    "We wish only the best for Vincent and would like to put on record our appreciation for his dedication every single day he was a part of this football club. 

    "Our priority remains the stability and success of Burnley, and we will continue to take the necessary steps to ensure that our ambition is realised, namely our return to the Premier League."

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