Transfer Talk: Barca’s Dest wanted by Roma amid struggles under Xavi

The 2022 January transfer window is closed, but there’s still plenty of gossip swirling about who’s moving where. Transfer Talk brings you all the latest buzz on rumours, comings and goings and, of course, done deals!

TOP STORY: Roma eye Dest with Barca ready to move on

AS Roma are interested in signing Barcelona full-back Sergino Dest, reports Calciomercato.

The Blaugrana are still reportedly ready to let the United States international go in the summer, despite boss Xavi Hernandez praising the right-back’s “spectacularly good” performance against Valencia on Sunday.

The LaLiga club are said to value the 21-year-old at €18 million, having signed him for roughly €21m from Ajax Amsterdam back in 2020. Dest has made 16 league appearances so far this season, starting 14 of those in the earlier portion of the campaign under Ronald Koeman.

The full-back could play a key role for the USMNT in their attempt to qualify for the Qatar World Cup in its final round of CONCACAF qualifiers in March. He played in a disappointing 2-0 loss to Canada in January, but the Americans are still on course to finish in the top three and take part in the world’s biggest tournament.

Roma’s potential move for the U.S. international could spell bad news for loanee Ainsley Maitland-Niles, though, who is currently at the club on loan from Arsenal. The 24-year-old can play at both right-back and in midfield, currently starting at right-wing-back in his opening few games under Jose Mourinho. That could be the position that Dest fills for the manager, should he make the switch.

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PAPER GOSSIP (by Luke Thrower)

Chelsea have begun talks to extend the contract of midfielder N’Golo Kante, reports Ekrem Konur. The 30-year-old’s deal at Stamford Bridge expires in 18 months, with the Blues keen to keep the France international at the club. The report also claims a number of teams are eyeing a potential move for the midfielder if he ultimately decides to leave Chelsea.

– Serie A side Atalanta are interested in a move for Torino striker Andrea Belotti in the summer, according to Nicolo Schira. The Italy international is set to leave Turin at the end of the season and become a free agent. The 28-year-old, who scored in his side’s 1-1 draw with Juventus in their local derby, currently captains Torino, but has struggled to play this season due to injury.

– Chelsea are considering a potential transfer for Wolves defender Max Kilman in the summer, reports TalkSport. The 24-year-old, a boyhood Blues fan, has started every game at centre-back for his side this season. His performances have impressed, prompting Chelsea to make a potential move given the possibility of them losing three defenders as free agents at the end of the season.

– Roma are tracking Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, according to Calciomercato. The 26-year-old has been a key player for Spurs since his arrival from Southampton in 2020 and also played under Jose Mourinho when he was coach of the north London club. The reports suggests that the Portuguese manager is now hoping to reunite with Hojbjerg in Rome.

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