Man Utd and Liverpool battle for stunning £60m midfielder as Newcastle United eye ex-Premier League star

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The latest Premier League transfer talk as Manchester United, Liverpool, Newcastle United and Arsenal consider moves ahead of the January transfer window.

Liverpool and Manchester United are both said to be considering a move for Fulham star Joao Palhinha. The Portugal international was subject of interest from Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich during the summer and came close to securing a deal in the final days of the transfer window. However, the move collapsed and Palhinha returned to Craven Cottage to sign a new, improved contract tying him to the club until the summer of 2028.

Despite that agreement, the powerful midfielder has been continually linked with a move away from Fulham and TEAMtalk have now claimed Liverpool and United are ready to firm up their interest by pursuing a deal for a player believed to be valued at around £60m by the Cottagers.

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AFP via Getty Images

The 3AM Verdict: Liverpool’s refresh of their midfield options has been something of a success but there is a feeling there is still something missing. Palhinha could well be that option and would provide Jurgen Klopp with a powerful option in the middle of the park. As for United’s ‘interest’, that is understandable as they continue to struggle dominating games.

Newcastle eye new Mane man

There can’t be too many clubs more desperate for the January transfer window to open than Newcastle United.

As Eddie Howe’s squad buckles under the strain caused by a lengthy injury list and a hectic fixture schedule, all eyes are now on how soon players can return and what moves can be made when the winter trading period opens.

 Sadio Mane of Liverpool lifting the UEFA Champions League trophy at the end of the UEFA Champions League Final between Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool at Estadio Wanda Metropolitano on June 01, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images) Sadio Mane of Liverpool lifting the UEFA Champions League trophy at the end of the UEFA Champions League Final between Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool at Estadio Wanda Metropolitano on June 01, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
Sadio Mane of Liverpool lifting the UEFA Champions League trophy at the end of the UEFA Champions League Final between Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool at Estadio Wanda Metropolitano on June 01, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images) | Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Speculation has suggested a forward is on the agenda for the Magpies as they look to provide competition for Alexander Isak and Callum Wilson - and Spanish outlet Fichajes have claimed a move for former Liverpool star Sadio Mane is on their list of priorities.

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The Senegal international has scored nine goals and provided five assists since joining Saudi Arabia Pro League club Al-Nassr during the summer transfer window - but he could be handed a chance to make a loan move to St. James' Park as the report suggests the Magpies are considering offers for several Pro League players.

The 3AM Verdict: Although a loan deal will be seen as cost effective by many, the wage structure at St. James' Park would surely make a move for Mane unlikely.  The former Liverpool man’s wage would far exceed what is being earned by the top stars at Newcastle and there is a hesitancy to break that structure in the near future.

Arsenal urged to make Villa move

Saturday night’s Premier League clash between Aston Villa and Arsenal showed the Unai Emery’s side are very much on the up.

Pressed Arsenal’s defence to no end in the first half, forcing a few mistakes. Missed a big chance to make it 2-0 in the second half, though, as he failed to find the corner.Pressed Arsenal’s defence to no end in the first half, forcing a few mistakes. Missed a big chance to make it 2-0 in the second half, though, as he failed to find the corner.
Pressed Arsenal’s defence to no end in the first half, forcing a few mistakes. Missed a big chance to make it 2-0 in the second half, though, as he failed to find the corner. | Getty Images

With an outstanding home record still in tact after John McGinn grabbed the only goal of the game, Villa are firmly in the race for a place in next season’s Champions League and are worthy of their growing status as genuine contenders for the Premier League title.

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However, one former Arsenal star has suggested his old club should land a blow on their conquerors by making a big money move for striker Ollie Watkins during the January transfer window. The Gunners are without a consistent goalscorer as they look to challenge for their Premier League title and former goalkeeper David Seaman believe Watkins can solve those issues.

He told TEAMtalk: “(Watkins) is a good shout. Yeah, because he’s a box striker. He doesn’t get too involved in the build-up play which I like. I sometimes see Jesus too far out, and I’m like: ‘No, get back in the middle!’ It’s something everyone is talking about, getting a new striker would boost the team.”

The 3AM Verdict: Watkins has been in outstanding form this season and has give Unai Emery the sort of outlet any manager would crave.  Arsenal’s interest, if there is any, would be understandable - but it’s hard to see Villa playing ball when it comes to agreeing a fee.

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