Former Arsenal, Real Madrid and Sevilla star Jose Antonio Reyes has returned to Spanish football following a brief spell in China by signing with second-tier strugglers Extremadura.

Reyes left Cordoba for Xinjiang Tianshan in China's League One in June, but after failing to stop them from being relegated to the third level of Chinese football, he swiftly departed.

A former Spain international, 35-year-old Reyes has enjoyed a distinguished career having played for Madrid and Atletico Madrid, Arsenal, Sevilla and Benfica.

He joins Extremadura amid a relegation battle, with the Almendralejo-based side occupying the last relegation spot and two points adrift of safety.

Bournemouth have signed Wales international centre-back Chris Mepham from Championship side Brentford for a reported £12million.

Mepham, 21, has signed a "long-term contract" with the Cherries, having developed into one of one of the most highly rated young British defenders.

After coming through Brentford's academy, Mepham made his breakthrough last season, making 21 appearances and nailing down a spot in the starting XI in the second half of the campaign.

The former Wales Under-21s captain added to that with another 22 outings this term and has impressed despite Brentford languishing in 17th in the table.

Mepham joins a strong collection of talented young players at Bournemouth, including Nathan Ake, Lewis Cook, David Brooks and Dominic Solanke, and highlighted the influence of manager Eddie Howe in his signing.

"It's taken a while to get my signature on the dotted line but it’s been worth the wait," Mepham told Bournemouth's official website.

"There's so much to like about this club, not least the manager. Eddie Howe is a fantastic manager and what he's done here is remarkable, so to be working under him every day is a really exciting prospect.

"I'm still young and have lots to learn and develop on my game, but I can't wait to get started, to meet everyone and to get out on the training pitch."

Mepham becomes Bournemouth's third signing of the month, following the reported £19m acquisition of Solanke and Nathaniel Clyne's loan arrival, both from Liverpool.

Meanwhile, Bournemouth have allowed midfielder Marc Pugh depart the club on loan for the rest of the season, joining second-tier Hull City.

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde has defended the arrival of Kevin-Prince Boateng, telling the media they have been critical of "all" signings during his tenure as coach.

Boateng completed an unlikely loan switch from Sassuolo on Monday, with Barca also having the right to purchase him for €8million during his stay.

The signing raised eyebrows throughout world football, with many surprised by Barca opting to sign the journeyman midfielder, whose three most recent clubs were Sassuolo, Eintracht Frankfurt and Las Palmas.

But Valverde pointed out media coverage of Barca's signings during his time at the club has generally been negative, yet few have been deemed failures.

Speaking to reporters ahead of Wednesday's Copa del Rey quarter-final first leg at Sevilla, Valverde said: "Since I've been here, all of them are controversial signings, and then...?

"[About] Arturo Vidal, Paulinho, you talked a lot, with Arthur also, then he also gives us a great performance. Things always end up going well.

"The departure of Munir [El Haddadi] is a matter of the club, and we would like to have strikers in the team who score 15 goals, but that's not been the case. Boateng arrives for a few months.

"He knows the trade, a player who, having made a career in other positions, now plays as a number nine, he knows LaLiga and the role he is playing in.

"He was available, Munir left, the club thought he was the best option and I hope he helps us a lot."

Boateng has on occasion been accused of having problems with his attitude, but Valverde insists the former Ghana international has a clean slate at Camp Nou.

"We trust in the presumption of innocence," Valverde said. "We do not want to fight with him, but want him to help us and to score goals. In Las Palmas he had a great year."

One player linked with a move away from Barca is Brazilian winger Malcom, who is said to be interesting Tottenham, among other clubs.

Valverde accepts the former Bordeaux talent could depart, though he feels Malcom has the talent to play for Barca if he commits himself.

"Until January 31, everything can happen," Valverde said. "But we cannot run out of players.

"There are players who play more and others less. Malcom must fight to play more, because he has the qualities to do so. We expect a lot from him."

Former Chelsea striker Demba Ba has signed for Istanbul Basaksehir.

Ba last played for Shanghai Shenhua, scoring five goals in 17 Chinese Super League appearances last year.

And the 33-year-old is returning to the Super Lig having had two previous spells with Besiktas, his new club confirming the move on Tuesday.

Istanbul Basaksehir are six points clear at the top of the table as they seek their first-ever Super Lig title.

Ba's arrival boosts their attacking options further following the signing of former Brazil forward Robinho earlier this month.

Ex-Arsenal and Manchester City striker Emmanuel Adebayor is also on Istanbul Basaksehir's books, as well as on-loan Barcelona winger Arda Turan.

Thomas Tuchel described Paris Saint-Germain's midfield issues as "very, very serious" as he confirmed the Ligue 1 leaders are trying to make a January signing.

Adrien Rabiot is unavailable, having been banished to the reserves due to a contract stand-off, and Marco Verratti is sidelined by a sprained ankle.

Dani Alves filled in as a makeshift midfielder as PSG thrashed Guingamp 9-0 in Ligue 1 on Saturday, while fellow Brazilian defender Marquinhos has also featured in the role.

With PSG set to face Manchester United in the last 16 of the Champions League next month, Tuchel wants to add to his midfield options before the transfer window closes with Napoli's Allan and Watford's Abdoulaye Doucoure reportedly on his wish-list.

"It's January 21 and we have needs," Tuchel told reporters ahead of a Coupe de France clash at home to Strasbourg on Wednesday. 

"We lost Adrien Rabiot, Lass Diarra and Marco Verratti, the situation has not improved.

"We stay with our decision [on Rabiot] because Marco returns in a few weeks. We stay with our basic choice.

"We have recovered Dani Alves in this role but it is very, very serious for us. Who do I want? Yeah, yeah, I know. Unfortunately I cannot tell you!

"Julian Draxler has the quality to play with us because he can adapt and he is very, very reliable in many positions.

"Dani Alves will play in the middle against Strasbourg, with his quality and mentality he has done incredible workouts. Draxler has a more offensive profile than he and Marquinhos.

"I have already talked a lot about Adrien and this subject. I can only repeat that it's a thing between the club and him."

PSG are already out of the Coupe de la Ligue and Tuchel told his players to expect a tough challenge against Strasbourg at the Parc des Princes.

Strasbourg are fifth in Ligue 1 and held PSG to a 1-1 draw at home when they met in the league last month.

"This is the second-best attack in Ligue 1, they are also very strong in the defensive game, they are in a phase with four wins in a row away," Tuchel said.

"It has been experienced there [in Strasbourg] that they are very serious and aggressive. It was very difficult to have opportunities and score.

"It's a big challenge to play against Strasbourg. We must play at a top level."

Wesley Hoedt has joined Celta Vigo from Southampton on loan for the rest of the season.

The LaLiga club have the option to sign the centre-back on a permanent deal in the post-season transfer window.

Hoedt, 24, joins Sofiane Boufal in leaving the Premier League for Balaidos this term.

"Hoedt's move will allow him to gain additional playing time between now and the end of the season, while also further helping [Ralph] Hasenhuttl to achieve his aim of trimming the first-team squad this month," Southampton said in a statement.

"The club would like to wish Wesley good luck for the rest of the season."

Hoedt joined Saints in August 2017 from AZ for a reported fee of £15million, signing a five-year deal.

The Netherlands international made 28 league appearances last season and managed 13 starts this term, but was left out of the side by new boss Hasenhuttl.

Eden Hazard admits he would still like to join Real Madrid but could yet be persuaded to stay at Chelsea.

The Belgium international has been linked with a move to the Santiago Bernabeu for some time and has previously expressed an interest in a switch to LaLiga.

Hazard says the departure of childhood idol Zinedine Zidane as head coach at the end of last season would not necessarily influence his plans, but has suggested he could still commit his future to Stamford Bridge.

"Would I like to sign for Real Madrid? Why not?" he told France Football. "I have never heard from Zidane and if he goes to Manchester United tomorrow, for example, I would not be there.

"Real Madrid without Zidane is different, but it is still Real Madrid. 

"I've won everything in England, except the Community Shield, but that doesn't mean I'm going to leave. I've always said that I want to try something different after England, but there are things that might make me stay."

Hazard was initially tipped to leave Chelsea last season amid suggestions of a poor relationship with head coach Antonio Conte, who was replaced by Maurizio Sarri prior to the start of 2018-19.

The 28-year-old has been in impressive form this term, with 10 goals and 10 assists in 22 appearances in the Premier League, despite being used recently in a false nine role, one which he disliked playing under Conte.

Hazard claims he has always been a source of frustration for his managers, however, and sees no reason why that will change regardless of the standard of his displays.

"I didn't only frustrate Conte," he said. "In my career, I've frustrated all my coaches. And here, Sarri, I still frustrate him. [Jose] Mourinho, I frustrated him.

"They think I need to score more, to do more here, more of that. The next one I have, I'll frustrate him, too."

Indeed, Hazard believes he may be different to the rest of the world's elite players as he is not obsessed with goals and silverware.

"I may be apart from the best players in the world. The best think goals, passes, trophies. I've never been like that. So, yes, maybe," he said.

"In professional football, there are a lot of players like me, who want to have fun."

However, the former Lille star still believes Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo must be considered a cut above the rest given their success over the last decade.

"I've been at their table for a long time!" he added. "Even if it's only been six months, I've had good form since the World Cup. I feel like that, even in the eyes of the fans.

"Before, in their eyes, it was: 'Yes, he's a very good player, but can he be among the greatest?'. But there is a moment where you have to keep your feet on the ground. For what they have done in the last 10 years, you can't be compared to them, it's impossible."

Kevin-Prince Boateng described his move to Barcelona as a "dream" after the midfielder's shock loan switch was confirmed on Monday.

Boateng, 31, joined the LaLiga giants on loan from Serie A side Sassuolo for the rest of the season, with an €8million purchase option included.

The former AC Milan and Tottenham midfielder said it was a dream to get an opportunity to play for Barca.

"I'm very happy. It's a big honour to be here and have the possibility to play for this great club," Boateng told Barca TV.

"For every kid who starts to play football I think it is a dream to play for a club like Barcelona, so for every player and especially for me it's a big dream come true."

Boateng only arrived at Sassuolo from Eintracht Frankfurt in July last year, making 15 appearances for the club.

England and Chelsea great Ashley Cole has linked up with his former team-mate Frank Lampard by joining Derby County until the end of the season.

Barcelona have completed a surprise move for former AC Milan attacking midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng, signing him on an initial loan deal until the end of the season.

Barcelona have completed a surprise move for former AC Milan attacking midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng, signing him on an initial loan deal until the end of the season.

Kevin-Prince Boateng confirmed his shock move from Sassuolo to Barcelona is close, calling his impending switch to Camp Nou a "huge opportunity".

Barca coach Ernesto Valverde had been hoping for attacking reinforcements in January, particularly after seeing Paco Alcacer depart for Borussia Dortmund in the previous transfer window and then Munir El Haddadi join Sevilla this month.

But Boateng is an arrival few had predicted, with the former Ghana international – who has played for Tottenham, Borussia Dortmund, AC Milan and Schalke, among others – reportedly joining on loan with an €8million purchase option.

Now 31, Boateng is viewed by many as a player who has never really lived up to expectations after initially impressing as a teenager at Hertha Berlin, but he is on the verge of the move of his career and can hardly believe it.

Speaking to Sky Sport Italia, Boateng said: "It's a bit of a sad day, because I leave a fantastic group and a club like Sassuolo that gave me so much.

"Barcelona is a huge opportunity and the emotion is unique. I was very stressed today [Monday], but I wanted to respect Sassuolo."

With media speculation regarding Boateng and Barca going into overdrive on Monday, things from the past were swift to resurface.

One particular interview from 2017 revealed Boateng had regarded himself as a Real Madrid fan since he was a child, but he dismissed that ahead of joining Barca and is eager to score against Los Blancos in the next Clasico on March 2.

"Those are old things, I think only of Barca," he said. "I hope to score in the Clasico at the Santiago Bernabeu."

Barcelona are understood to be on the verge of signing former Tottenham, AC Milan and Schalke attacking midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng from Serie A side Sassuolo.

A report by Sky in Italy claims the 31-year-old will travel to Barcelona on Monday to conclude a loan switch until the end of the season, with an €8million option to make the move permanent.

Barca head coach Ernesto Valverde has been looking for attacking reinforcements as cover for Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele – the latter now facing two weeks on the sidelines with a sprained left ankle.

Munir El Haddadi joined Sevilla this month, while Paco Alcacer left for Borussia Dortmund during the previous transfer window, leaving the reigning LaLiga champions light up front.

Valverde batted back questions over a purported interest in LAFC's Carlos Vela over the weekend, while Mundo Deportivo touted veteran Monaco striker Radamel Falcao as an option.

Boateng would represent an even more leftfield move than those two, although he did enjoy a successful season in LaLiga with Las Palmas in 2016-17 on the back of his second stint at Milan – scoring 10 times in 28 matches.

A campaign with Eintracht Frankfurt, Boateng's fourth Bundesliga club, followed before he joined Sassuolo.

Boateng has been deployed as a false nine by Sassuolo and completed 90 minutes in Saturday's 0-0 draw against Inter at San Siro. He has four goals in 13 games this term.

Mauro Icardi signing a new contract at Inter is virtually a "100 per cent" certainty, says his wife and agent Wanda Nara.

Callum Hudson-Odoi has been hailed as an "outstanding talent" by former Germany star Michael Ballack.

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