Talks begin over sensational Chelsea & Villa swap deal as Fulham find Palhinha replacement

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The latest Premier League transfer rumours including news from Chelsea, Aston Villa, Fulham and Newcastle United.

Welcome back to our daily round-up of the spiciest new Premier League transfer rumours, and we start – as we seem to do just about every day – at Stamford Bridge, where another bizarre transfer is never very far away.

Just to add some extra zest to proceedings, it’s a swap deal between Chelsea and Aston Villa that has been mooted in the press already but which is now sufficiently far along the line to see Chelsea discussing contractual terms with Jhon Durán, according to Caught Offside (via Fabrizio Romano).

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The player heading the other way is Conor Gallagher, who Chelsea have wanted shot of for about a year as they look to maximise the profit they can make from their home-grown talents – he would, at least, be a fine replacement for Douglas Luiz, who seems bound for Juventus in a swap deal of his own.

The 3AM Verdict: This transfer doesn’t seem to make much sense, but it also seems to be happening. Chelsea get rid of Gallagher but don’t get as much profit as they may need for him. They also fill the vacancy at striker, but with a young and unproven player who isn’t guaranteed to score a hatful of goals every year. But then when has Chelsea’s post-Abramovich transfer work ever been particularly coherent? It does, at least, make sense for Aston Villa. Frankly, it’s just nice to have the swap deal back in fashion.

Fulham eye Palhinha replacement

Apparently, Fulham are stuck in the past – or at least in January 2024 – if this latest rumour from TeamTalk is anything to go by. The suggestion is that with João Palhinha’s aborted move to Bayern Munich back on the menu, they’re going all the way back to Fluminense’s Brazilian international midfielder André, who you may remember from endless unfulfilled transfer rumours back in the winter.

It sounds as though progress on Palhinha’s move is still slow, with Fulham hanging on for double the €30m (£25m) that has been offered so far but they’re prepared to go back to the well with André if and when that one gets over the line. It seems as though Fluminense, who refused to sell even though the player agreed personal terms with Fulham in January, are now prepared to let him go after all.

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The 3AM Verdict: André is a really talented midfielder who offers a lot of control in possession and works hard to win the ball back when he doesn’t have it – in other words, he could well be a like-for-like swap with Palhinha and is probably good enough that they wouldn’t end up missing their talismanic midfielder too much at Craven Cottage. Getting this one done while turning a profit would simply represent some very sound business.

New contenders enter Chiesa race

Finally, a word from Sport Witness, who have picked up on some fresh reports from Italy which suggest that Liverpool and Manchester United aren’t the only Premier League clubs in the market for Juventus forward Federico Chiesa – it seems that both Aston Villa and Newcastle United are taking a look too.

Napoli and Bayern Munich are in there as well so this will be a very busy few weeks for Chiesa’s agent, to say the least – the Italian international has just one year left on his contract with Juve and doesn’t seem keen to renew, hence the bunfight over his signature and their willingness to let him leave. This one will probably run for a while as the various parties figure out how much they’re willing to bid, but it could all push Chiesa’s price up quite a bit.

The 3AM Verdict: We’re a little sceptical about the idea that Villa are involved as he doesn’t seem to fit anywhere in Unai Emery’s system, but Newcastle seems plausible enough and any half-decent team would be foolish not to enquire about a possible cut-price deal for a very dangerous forward. He won’t score 20 a season but he’ll keep goals and chances flowing while harassing defenders from out wide, and a lot of clubs have a use for that kind of skill set.

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