Arsenal and Manchester United have been put on alert by the problems at German crisis club Borussia Dortmund, but Liverpool are stealing the headlines as they welcome striker back, convince a young prospect to stay and are linked with a move for the most boring man in football:
• With Daniel Sturridge back at Anfield there is more good news for Liverpool as Sky Sports reports that winger and makeshift striker Raheem Sterling is set to sign a new deal with the Reds. The 20-year-old "has been in protracted talks over a new deal and there has been some doubt over the player's future", says Sky. But it adds that he will sign a new five-year deal within the next week.
• According to the Daily Mirror Arsenal are ready to pounce after Borussia Dortmund midfielder Ilkay Gundogan "was given a contract ultimatum". The paper says that the German international, who has just 18 months left on his current deal, has been told by Dortmund to either sign a new contract or pack his bags. His contract expires in June 2016 but reports from Germany suggest that Gundogan's agents would like to find a new club and consequently "Arsenal are now watching developments closely". It's said that a bid of £16m could be enough to grease Dortmund's palm, the lowish figure explained by a series of injury issues that Gundogan has endured in the last year.
Subscribe to The Week
Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.
• Manchester United are also preparing a raid on Dortmund, says the Daily Mirror. The German side are in disarray and lie second from bottom of the Bundesliga and Louis van Gaal wants to take advantage luring Germany captain Mats Hummels to Old Trafford. The Red Devils failed with a £35m bid in the summer, but hope to land their man this month. "Hummels remains United's top defensive target and there is a growing belief at Old Trafford that a deal can be done during this month's transfer window," says the paper.
• Having already bagged (if the reports are to be believed) Krystian Bielik from Legia Warsaw, Arsenal are looking to double up by landing his teammate Ondrej Duda. The Daily Star claims that the Slovakian midfielder is in Arsene Wenger's sights after his scouts sent back favourable reports. Tottenham have also been linked with Duda in the past – as have Everton and Stoke – but Wenger is in the driving seat and the Star says the only issue is whether he signs Duda this month or in the summer, as Legia would reportedly prefer.
• Liverpool are expected to dip into the transfer market this month but Metro claims the Reds have just seen Xherdan Shaqiri slip through their fingers after Bayern Munich and Inter Milan agreed terms for the Swiss international. The 23-year-old Shaqiri will join Inter on loan until the end of the season, "before the move is made permanent in the summer".
• After missing out on Shaqiri could Liverpool console themselves with Manchester City midfielder and world-renowned bore James Milner? The Daily Mail seems to think so, claiming manager Brendan Rodgers is "interested in the in-form 29-year-old". Pressed on whether an offer might be made for Milner – whose City contract expires in the summer – Rodgers refused to comment, saying simply: "James is a wonderful player... [but] I would never speak about another player until they were signed and in the door."
• Liverpool are one of several clubs said to monitoring Yannick Bolasie but Crystal Palace gaffer Alan Pardew said any club would need to make an irresistible offer in order to prise the 25-year-old winger from Selhurst Park. Everton and Pardew's former club, Newcastle, have also expressed an interest in Bolasie but Talksport says Pardew has message for all the Frenchman's suitors: "It would take an extraordinary bid to take him away from this football club... I would be very surprised if any club wanted to make that phone call."
• Burnley have used their official website to announce that Michael Keane has made his loan deal from Manchester United permanent. The England U21 international has penned three-and-a-half deal at Turf Moor, following a series of impressive performances for Burnley since arriving last summer. Clarets' boss Sean Dyche said of the 21-year central defender: "He's on a good pathway at the moment and we're delighted that he has decided to join us."
Continue reading for free
We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.
Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.