Premier League

The Thiago summer transfer scramble is officially ON - The Warm-Up

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Thiago in training with Bayern Munich

Image credit: Getty Images

ByTom Adams
31/07/2020 at 06:47 | Updated 31/07/2020 at 07:23

Some big news has emerged out of Germany overnight, while Newcastle United fans should be happy, even if they aren't...


Thiago wants out!


Bayern Munich confirm Thiago wants to leave

31/07/2020 AT 07:02

Throw open the windows! Let the sunshine in! Scream it from the top of your lungs! The Thiago summer transfer frenzy is on!

The exceptionally talented Bayern Munich midfielder has already been linked with moves to Liverpool and Manchester United this summer – a bit like being asked in the late 90s to choose between, er, Manchester United and Liverpool.

And now the prospect of Thiago moving to one of the Premier League’s most prestigious clubs has inched significantly up the transfer rumour reality scale with an admission from Bayern bigwig Karl-Heinz Rummenigge that he will be moving on this summer.

With one year left on his current deal, Thiago has told sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic he has no intention of signing a new one and so Bayern will seek a decent fee for him this summer.

"Actually, the conversations Hasan had with him were always very productive. And at some point it actually seemed that [a deal would be reached]. But then Thiago informed Hasan that he would like to do something new again, and so it is," Rummenigge told Sky Sport in Germany.

"We will have to accept that. We have a contract that is still valid for one year and if he agrees with any club and that club should pay a transfer of a certain amount. I don't want to make any public comment about the amount that we have in mind. Then we will deal with it, but we will not, as I have already said, hold a summer sale.

"I'm not angry at all, I like him. I think he's a great footballer, a fine footballer and he's a good character too. And one shouldn't forget either: at 29, he is at an age where, if he wants to do something new, he has to do it now because if you are in your 30s, it will be more difficult to make transfers."

Thiago dodged a bullet when a move to David Moyes’ United fell through back in 2013 and on the face of things, any chance to join the current champions of England, Europe and the world looks, well, pretty attractive.

Either way, we are just here for the transfer drama.

The Newcastle takeover is off

Yesterday was a good day for Newcastle United, a good day for the Premier League, and a good day for English football as a whole.

It might not feel like it to a fanbase quite understandably sick to death of Mike Ashley and allowing themselves to dream of Kylian Mbappe lining up alongside Joelinton next season, but news that the takeover of the club by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund had fallen through was nevertheless the best outcome for football.

If you allow yourself to contemplate it quickly for a few seconds, the concept that a football club can be owned by a state is an absolute absurdity. Not least a state with serious human rights problems and blamed for the dismembering of a Washington Post journalist in Istanbul.

And however much you want Mike Ashley out, however much you want Mbappe up front, when Amnesty International react with relief to the news, that’s something to take on board. Their statement read as follows:

“This deal was always a blatant attempt by the government of Saudi Arabia to try to sportswash its abysmal human rights record by buying into the passion, prestige and pride of Tyneside football.

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“The fact that this sportswashing bid has failed will be seen by human rights defenders in Saudi Arabia as a sign that their suffering has not been entirely overlooked. Numerous peaceful Saudi human rights activists are currently behind bars, and of course a Saudi journalist was grotesquely murdered by agents of the Saudi state less than two years ago.

“Looking ahead, there needs to be a rule change to ensure the Premier League’s owners’ and directors’ test provides proper scrutiny of the human rights records of those trying to buy into English football, not least when the buyers are governments or government representatives.

“We’ll be watching developments at St James’ Park with interest and meanwhile we wish Newcastle United and its fans well.”

The truth is, as Amnesty allude to, this should never have got this far in the first place. The Premier League needs to urgently review its toothless fit and proper test for prospective new club owners – and a takeover by a state guilty of human rights abuses shouldn’t even be a possibility.

Ake signs – but is he the right man?

Nathan Ake did not get much of a chance under Jose Mourinho at Chelsea

Image credit: PA Sport

Manchester City were making moves in the transfer market yesterday as they snaffled the centre-back they have been so desperately lacking when agreeing a £41m deal for Bournemouth’s Nathan Ake.

Not that you asked, but The Warm-Up isn’t so sure about this one. Ake is a fine player with the requisite skills that Pep Guardiola wants in a defender, but he has been playing with Bournemouth for four seasons and will be presented with a very different equation at City.

No doubt he’s good, but is he potentially great? Oh, and there’s this to consider from Jamie Carragher…

West London derby at Wembley

Fulham set up a local derby in the Championship play-off final on Tuesday night in exceptionally nervy fashion as they lost 2-1 at home to Cardiff but scraped through 3-2 on aggregate.

The Warm-Up has no skin in this game but can’t help but root for Fulham given the rich contributions they have made to the tapestry of Premier League history.

Come on lads, do it for the Michael Jackson statue, Franco Baresi’s three-month spell as director of football and Felix Magath treating Brede Hangeland’s thigh injury with a lump of cheese!


Last night, Fulham’s Tom Cairney was responsible for probably the worst free-kick that’s ever been taken in the history of football.


Tim Lovejoy’s contribution to football culture might not extend to the finest literature on the subject, but he is certainly responsible for one of the most accidentally funny moments we can recall.

It’s the FA Cup final. It’s Chelsea. It’s Arsenal. It’s…. only Ray Parlour.


There’s a big game in France tonight as PSG take on Lyon in the final of the Coupe de France – a handy little warm-up for the Champions League returning, even with Kylian Mbappe out due to injury.

Then tomorrow it’s FA Cup final day! Kick off is at 5:30pm and we will be live from 4:30pm. Don’t miss it.

Andi Thomas on Monday is your bread and butter, to be fair. You'll be over the moon to read him on the FA Cup final.

Champions League

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31/07/2020 AT 02:33

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29/07/2020 AT 10:40
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