West Ham plot ambitious January double deal as Nottingham Forest transfer call delights Serie A boss

West Ham United and Liverpool are reportedly set to go head-to-head over two potential signings during the January transfer window.

The Sun have claimed the Hammers will have competition from Premier League rivals as they look to conclude a double deal for Bayer Leverkusen defender Odilon Kossounou and Fluminense midfielder Andre. The latter was believed to be on the radar of both David Moyes and Jurgen Klopp during the summer but neither Premier League club were willing to go beyond £30million and move closer to his club’s asking price.

Jurgen Klopp manager of Liverpool with West Ham United manager David Moyes   during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Liverpool FC at London Stadium on April 26, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
Jurgen Klopp manager of Liverpool with West Ham United manager David Moyes during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Liverpool FC at London Stadium on April 26, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Kossounou has become one of the Bundesliga’s most consistent defenders during his time at Leverkusen and is attracting interest from a number of clubs around Europe – but it is West Ham and Liverpool that are said to be at the front of the race for his services.

The 3AM Verdict: This could be one – or should that be two – to watch for the January transfer window as both Premier League clubs look to build on what turned out to be an impressive summer of recruitment after a slow start to the close season.

Former Chelsea star questions summer signing

William Gallas has admitted he ‘didn’t understand’ Chelsea’s decision to sign defender Axel Disasi.

The Monaco defender made a £38.5million summer switch to Stamford Bridge as part of the ongoing rebuild of the Blues squad and made a positive start to his Premier League career when he marked his debut with a goal in the 1-1 draw against Liverpool.

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Axel Disasi has been used extensively by new Chelsea boss Mauricio Pochettino
Axel Disasi has been used extensively by new Chelsea boss Mauricio Pochettino

The 25-year-old has played each and every minute of Chelsea’s four Premier League fixtures so far this season as he continues to form a key part of Mauricio Pochettino’s plans. However, Gallas has questioned some ‘bad habits’ he has witnessed from one of his successors at Stamford Bridge and believes Disasi ‘has to improve a lot’ if he is to be a success with his old club.

He told The Metro: “I was one of the guys who didn’t understand why Disasi joined Chelsea. The Premier League is a different league in terms of difficulty. Even though he is a physical player he has to understand strikers will be very strong when they challenge him.

“He has to improve a lot, but he has the opportunity to play alongside Thiago Silva and he has to learn from him, speak to him a lot, and Silva can help him move to the next step. Even though he has joined Chelsea it doesn’t mean he is completely ready. He still has some bad habits and he has to change them. That’s why when I saw his name, I thought he was not ready to join Chelsea.

“But you have to give him time to settle into a new country, new players and a new club. You have to give him time. When you have a foreign player who joins the Premier League you have to at least give them one year.”

The 3AM Verdict: Gallas has never been shy of having a say and although he makes some questionable points, he also gives some good advice to Disasi. Thiago Silva will unquestionably be integral in helping him settle into life in the Premier League and in helping guide his fellow defender through his first season in England.

Celtic and Nottingham Forest transfer decision delights Serie A boss

Bologna manager Thiago Motta has revealed his delight at retaining the services of striker Sydney van Hooijdonk after Celtic and Nottingham Forest both showed an interest in the Dutch star.

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Championship clubs Southampton and Sunderland have been linked with a deal for Bologna forward Sydney van Hooijdonk during the summer window with Sunderland in dire need of striker additions.
Championship clubs Southampton and Sunderland have been linked with a deal for Bologna forward Sydney van Hooijdonk during the summer window with Sunderland in dire need of striker additions.

The £4million-rated forward scored 19 goals during a loan spell at Eredivise club Heerenveen last season and is set to be handed more game-time following his return to his parent clubs this summer. But things could have been very different had Celtic or Forest made a summer move for the son of a striker that represented both clubs, Pierre van Hooijdonk.

Reflecting on his squad movement, Motta told TuttoMercatoWeb: “We made a wonderful transfer window. Because we got what we wanted we wanted with our possibilities.Today, we have Joshua (Zirkzee) in front, we have Sydney and Musa Barrow. Now that the transfer market is over, we have to sort out all these situations. We have him (Barrow) and Van Hooijdonk, who will have to do their job with great personality and professionalism.”

The 3AM Verdict: We can’t be the only ones that find Forest’s interest amusing given Van Hooijdonk senior’s conduct during his time at the City Ground. Nevertheless, it will be interesting to see just how Forest and Celtic’s reported interest progresses ahead of the Janaury transfer window.