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African Players Likely to Move this January

Ducor Sports gives a breakdown of the African players likely to switch sides this month.

The transfer window is wide open again with deals expected in bulk. Ducor Sports gives a breakdown of the African players likely to switch sides this month.
KALILOU KOULIBALY: The subject of racial slurs in the derby between Inter Milan and Napoli, in which a fan died of stab wounds, the Senegalese international is a hot topic in the transfer window. The figures attached to the centre-back keep altering indicating suitors to snap him up will have to break the bank. Chelsea are the outfit linked the longest with securing the player. However, the London club now seem to have been leapfrogged by EPL rivals Manchester United. Conaidering the rate at which the Red Devils’ defence leaked in the lead up to Mourinho’s torrid final moments at Old Traffford it wouldn’t have taken long for a desperate Jose to order his acquisition, no matter Napoli’s asking price; plus, the French-born fits the Portuguese’s type of a player –solid and combative. The 27-year-old even had United fans believing he’s headed for Manchester with his recent flirtation with Pogba who offered solidarity in the wake of the Senegalese’s racism storm, telling the World Cup winning midfielder, ‘see you soon.’
Interest in Kalidou has not waned even with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s arrival to the scene as interim manager but they must cough up £107m to see him at the Carrington Training grounds.
NICOLAS PEPE: A priority transfer target for many a top club, Ivory Coast’s Nicolas Pepe is one of the most sought-after African stars, with the glamorous English Premier League these days the preferred destination for players in the French Ligue1.


The 23-year-old is no different despite reiterating his club president’s remark that his future lies with Lille until end of the current campaign. However, loyalty takes a back-seat to cash-wielding clubs, there is a belief that the striker could see speculations regarding his future settled faster than he would have imagined. £28m is Lille’s valuation of the left-footed starlet who’d managed a return of 12 goals –six of those from the spot-kick – and five assists. Arsene Wenger may have been shoved out the door but Arsenal’s taste for players in the Ligue1 seems to remain with the Gunners’ reported to be among plethora of teams keeping tabs on Nicolas, though he wasn’t a priority target. Unai Emery was out raiding anything good at Roma but was forced to switch to Pepe having been told Cengiz Under will cost more than his £28m improved bid for the Turkish winger.
Unai is ardent on bolstering his strike with options even though star striker Aubameyang’s goal fountain is showing no sign of drying up.
Manchester City and Liverpool have both trailed the winger, a rivalry Arsenal must overcome to get their man.
MBWANA SAMATTA: Every club seems to be linked with Tanzania international Mbwana Ally Samatta as admirers stack up for the African. It’s difficult to predict the Belgian league top scorer’s stay beyond January as employers Genk are understood to be already resigned to losing the erstwhile Simba SC man they bought for a paltry sum from African giants TP Mazembe three seasons ago. Genk are now a selling club as chairman Peter Croonen is poised to accept a bid for his prized possession amid enquiries from Fenerbache.


The Turkish outfit’s interest in Samatta appears solid but the Belgians want €10m for the ex-CAF Champions League winner. The Yellow and Blacks languish at thethe wr end of the table, a step ahead of bottom-placed Rizespor in spite of the likes of Saldado, Andre Ayew and Islam Slimani being in their books.
Reports in the Turkish media suggest Fenerbache parting with the quoted aforesaid sum to make Ally theirs, but there is Crystal Palace who may well clamour for the Tanzania skipper’s services to save their season.
WILFRIED ZAHA: The Ivorian is having an impressive run. The winger attracted a mega deal from China which could have had him taking home a whopping £44m after-tax on a four-year contract.


However, with more years of football in him, the ex-England forward described the proposal ‘flattering’ but prefers to stay put, saying he’s focused on the job at the Selhurst Park. Chelsea are believed to have a long standing preference for the Elephants’ attacker. There is talk of Michy Batshuayi returning to England as a makeweight in Zaha’s possible departure to the Stamford Bridge for £70m.
SAMUEL CHUKWUEZE: Making the rounds in the back pages is Nigeria’s Samuel Chukwueze, with Atletico de Madrid among the big-names itching to sway the Villareal winger.


Samuel has netted five times in a total ofof fourte (14) cameos. Guarantee of consistent playing time should influence the teenager’s move which is being rated as highly likely this January.
Chukwueze is now a regular at the Yellow Submarines, following his debut in September. He gave Real Madrid’s Marcelo a night to forget in yesterday evening’s 2-2 draw with Villareal.

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