With the season over, the focus of fans and of sporting directors across Europe has turned to the upcoming transfer window, which is already whirring into action.
For Monaco, many of the rumours surround outgoings. However, during an interview with L’Équipe on Monday, sporting director Paul Mitchell revealed the summer transfer strategy for the side.
“Our idea is to bring in between three and five players,” began the Englishman. “We are hoping to add an attacking element, a winger or centre-forward – that will depend on availabilities within the market – a centre-midfielder and a defensive player”.
Speaking to Nice Matin, Mitchell added, “We will undoubtedly have a need for another goalkeeper as well, but the context surrounding that means we will have to wait a bit.
Whilst the strategy for incomings has been clearly outlined, their recruitment, as always, will also be dependent on outgoings, and rumours surrounding one player in particular have been intensifying in recent days and weeks.
Aurélien Tchouaméni – Linked by RMC, Goal & L’Équipe to Real Madrid, PSG & Liverpool. Monaco’s French international midfielder has been linked with a move away from the Stade Louis II for the past year. Since Saturday’s draw against Lens, those rumours have been amplified. RMC reported on Tuesday that Real Madrid had agreed an €80m deal for Tchouaméni, and that terms between the player and the Spanish champions were all but agreed. However, L’Équipe had previously reported that the player was “dreaming of Liverpool’s project. In recent days, talk of him joining the Merseyside club has dampened, but as Goal reported, a new challenger for his signature has emerged. PSG are now also keen on Tchouaméni and he is admired by Kylian Mbappé, who recently signed a contract extension at PSG and incoming sporting director Luis Campos. It remains to be seen how long the protracted saga will drag on, but what is certain is that Monaco will get a good price for their star asset given the calibre of the sides interested.
Yves Bissouma – Linked by Fabrice Hawkins to AS Monaco. Should Tchouaméni leave, Monaco could target Brighton and Hove Albion midfielder Yves Bissouma as a replacement. The Mali midfielder has enjoyed another solid campaign, having garnered interest from some of Europe’s elite last summer. Bissouma is a similar profile to Tchouaméni and would constitute a like-for-like replacement. However, if they are to land the former Lille player, they will have to fend off competition from Aston Villa, who are also interested in his signature.
Benoît Badiashile – Linked by Nice Matin to Newcastle, West Ham, Atletico Madrid and Manchester United. Badiashile is another name almost constantly linked with a departure from the Principality club. Speaking to Goalearlier this month, Badiashile revealed that he had informal contact with Premier League clubs in January, but added that he is in no rush to leave Monaco. Clubs across Europe and particularly in England could be set to test that statement. If he is to leave it would be to go abroad according to Nice Matin.
Evan Ndicka – Linked by Fabrice Hawkins to AS Monaco. As with Tchouaméni, Monaco are also looking at replacements for Badiashile should he leave this summer. According to Hawkins, Ndicka is a name that is “insisted upon ” by some at the club. The Frankfurt centre-back recently won the Europa League with the German side. Monaco could, however, face some high-profile competition, with Manchester United and Tottenham also interested.
Sofiane Diop – Linked by L’Équipe to Leicester and Borussia Dortmund. Diop struggled for game time in the final weeks of the season, and could depart Monaco this summer, despite signing a contract extension until 2026 only last summer. As well as Leicester and Borussia Dortmund, Nice are also interested in the player, just as they were in 2020.
Djibril Sidibé and Vito Mannone – to become free agents. Both Sidibé’s and Mannone’s contracts are set to expire in June. Although neither departure has been confirmed by the club, Sidibé has openly spoken to L’Équipe about his impending departure, while goalkeeper Mannone’s contract is also running out and looks unlikely to be renewed.
Photo by Luke Entwistle for Monaco Life