Football Transfer News | Man United sign Antony for over £80 million; Cavani signs for Valencia, and more

After much negotiation, Manchester United and Ajax have settled on a price for the transfer of winger Antony; Valencia signs veteran Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani on a two-year contract; West Ham signs Lucas Paquetá on a five-year deal, and Conte issues another update

August 30, 2022 02:31 pm | Updated 07:14 pm IST

File picture of Ajax Amsterdam’s Antony during a UEFA Champions League match. The Brazilian will join Manchester United

File picture of Ajax Amsterdam’s Antony during a UEFA Champions League match. The Brazilian will join Manchester United | Photo Credit: Reuters

Manchester United have reached an agreement to sign Brazil winger Antony from Ajax Amsterdam, the Premier League club said in a statement on Tuesday.

Antony, who played under United manager Erik ten Hag at Ajax, registered 12 goals and 10 assists in 33 games in all competitions as the Dutch club won a third straight Eredivisie title and made the last 16 in the Champions League last term.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed but British media reported that it would be worth an initial £80.75 million ($94.63 million), with a further 4.25 million pounds in add-ons for the 22-year-old.

Antony joined Amsterdam from Sao Paulo in February 2020 and played more than 80 times for Ajax, scoring 25 goals in total. He has also been capped nine times by Brazil since his debut in 2021, scoring twice.

He will become United's fifth close-season signing following the arrivals of Lisandro Martinez, Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen and Casemiro.

The announcement comes at a time when media speculation about the future of forward Cristiano Ronaldo intensifies, with the Portugal player reportedly seeking to leave Old Trafford after the team's failure to qualify for the Champions League.

Argentine Romero completes permanent move to Tottenham

Tottenham Hotspur’s Cristian Romero during the Premier League match against Chelsea

Tottenham Hotspur’s Cristian Romero during the Premier League match against Chelsea | Photo Credit: Action Images via Reuters

Tottenham Hotspur have completed the permanent signing of Argentina defender Cristian Romero on a deal until 2027, the Premier League side said on Tuesday.

The 24-year-old centre back had initially joined the London club on a loan deal from Serie A side Atalanta in August 2021 and helped them finish fourth in the English top flight and return to the Champions League.

A crucial part of manager Antonio Conte’s back three last season, Romero helped Spurs collect 10 wins from 14 league games in the final part of the campaign. He has made 32 appearances for the club and scored in the win over Brighton & Hove Albion in March.

Romero, who has 11 caps for Argentina, missed Spurs’ last two games against Wolverhampton Wanderers and Nottingham Forest with an adductor issue but has begun training ahead of Wednesday’s trip to West Ham United. 

Cavani swaps United for Valencia

File picture of Uruguay’s Edinson Cavani. File

File picture of Uruguay’s Edinson Cavani. File | Photo Credit: AFP

Valencia signed veteran Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani on a two-year contract on Monday.

The 35-year-old Cavani had been without a club since his contract with Manchester United expired at the end of last season.

He previously also played for Paris Saint-Germain, Napoli and Palermo.

Cavani was at Valencia’s Mestalla Stadium as the team lost to Atlético Madrid 1-0 in the Spanish league on Monday.

The team coached by Gennaro Gattuso has scored only once in its first three league matches.

West Ham sign Lucas Paquetá from Lyon for club record fee

West Ham United have signed midfielder Lucas Paquetá from French side Olympique Lyonnais for a club record fee, the Premier League club said on Monday.

West Ham United have signed midfielder Lucas Paquetá from French side Olympique Lyonnais for a club record fee, the Premier League club said on Monday. | Photo Credit: Twitter/@westham

West Ham United have signed midfielder Lucas Paquetá from French side Olympique Lyonnais for a club record fee, the Premier League club said on Monday.

Financial details were not disclosed but British media said West Ham paid an initial fee of 36.5 million pounds ($42.76 million) with a potential 14.4 million in add-ons for the Brazilian who signed a five-year deal with a one-year option.

That fee would eclipse the 45 million pounds West Ham paid for French striker Sebastien Haller in 2019.

“I am extremely happy to be here. I hope it’s the beginning of an enjoyable journey. I hope my time here is successful,” Lucas Paquetá said in a statement.

“Last season, West Ham had a very good season and I hope they continue to enjoy more and more good seasons in my time at the club. I am excited to pull on the West Ham shirt and show the fans what I can do, to help my team mates and the club.”

West Ham finished seventh last season under manager David Moyes but have struggled to get going in the new campaign to sit 16th after four games.

“He’s a player I’ve admired from afar for a very long time and of course, we saw him close up in our Europa League campaign last season,” Moyes said.

“He’s a very talented footballer and whilst he will need time to adapt to the Premier League, we’re excited about adding another proven international to our squad.”

West Ham next host Tottenham Hotspur in the league on Wednesday.

Spurs need at least two more transfer windows to be contenders, says Antonio Conte

Antonio Conte (left) says captain Harry Kane is an “important” player for Tottenham.

Antonio Conte (left) says captain Harry Kane is an “important” player for Tottenham. | Photo Credit: Getty Images

Tottenham Hotspur need at least two more transfer windows before they can challenge for the Premier League title, manager Antonio Conte said before the north London club travel to West Ham United on Wednesday.

Spurs made a strong start to the season by winning three of their opening four games. They are third in the league standings, level on 10 points with champions Manchester City and two behind rivals Arsenal.

“If you compare to last season, we are more complete,” Conte, who took charge at Spurs in November, told reporters on Monday.

“But to reach other teams at the top level, we need time, patience and transfer markets, at least two transfer markets to reach the same level.”

Tottenham invested heavily in the close season to bring in Richarlison, Yves Bissouma and Djed Spence, while Ivan Perisic joined on a free transfer and Clement Lenglet arrived on loan from Barcelona.

Conte said he has spoken with the club’s board about signing more players before the transfer window closes on Thursday but added: “If we do something or not, it’s okay.”

The Italian has made minimal changes to his starting line-up so far but Spurs face a quick turnaround for Wednesday’s short trip across London, three days after their 2-0 away win over Nottingham Forest.

“Now when you have to go and play one game every three days, it’s normal to make rotation, the players (have) to be intelligent to understand that they have to sometimes go on the bench, come in, alternate,” Conte said.

“With the new players, we started to work with them in only one month and a half. And I think at the end my choices were good because we got four good results in the first four games.

“And this is the period that the club can understand if we are really, really complete in the squad or maybe we could do better.”

Striker Harry Kane scored both goals in Sunday’s win over Forest and Conte said while there was no update on his contract situation, he is keen to keep hold of the 29-year-old beyond 2024.

“For sure I would like him to sign a new contract,” Conte said. “In this moment, for me it is very important to see him happy, totally involved with this season, this project and in what we are doing.

“Then it’s a decision that the player and the club have to take.”

With input from agencies.

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