Thomas Partey among top six Africans who could still move on deadline day

Published on: 05 October 2020

Goal’s Ed Dove picks out six potential deals involving African players that could get over the line before the window closes.

Kalidou Koulibaly

It’s a major surprise that Koulibaly remains at Napoli heading towards the tail end of 2020, having been linked with an exit from the club for the last half-dozen transfer windows.

Still only 29, he remains firmly in his prime, and considering how hard quality centre-backs are to find, surely he could be a perfect fit for one of Europe’s giants currently struggling in this department.

While Manchester City opted to turn to Ruben Dias and Nathan Ake to solve their problems at the back, Manchester United and Liverpool may both need last-minute reinforcements at centre-back after their woeful defensive performances of late.

Elsewhere, Paris Saint-Germain, AC Milan and Internazionale are all also understood to be keen on the defender’s services.

Yannick Bolasie

Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti has made no secret that the winger is not part of his plans at Goodison Park this season.

Bolasie has been told that he’s surplus to requirements, and the Toffees will desperately be hoping to find a buyer for the Democratic Republic of Congo wideman.

They’ve already managed to offload Moise Kean to Paris Saint-Germain, but it may be harder to cash in on Bolasie, who’s reportedly on £50,000 per week on Merseyside.

Injury shattered his prospects of making a mark in the North West, but at 31, Bolasie may have one more big move left in him.

Ismaila Sarr

While Premier League clubs would still have—in principle—until October 16 to sign players from the lower leagues, anyone spending the kind of cash Watford would want in exchange for Sarr would surely love to get the wideman over the line as soon as possible.

He’s been linked with a move to Liverpool and Manchester United among others, and he’s one of several players who the Red Devils could move for as a cut-price alternative to Jadon Sancho or Ousmane Dembele.

He demonstrated his excellence in flashes for the Hornets last term—his first season in English football—and he’s surely got too much to offer to spend a season in the second tier.

Said Benrahma

Another player in a very similar situation to Sarr, it’s a major surprise that Benrahma remains in the second tier following a sensational season with Brentford last term.

The Algeria international’s quality in the Championship—17 goals and nine assists—prompted reported interest from both Arsenal and Chelsea, but neither are yet to move for the maestro.

Latterly, a move to the likes of Aston Villa and Crystal Palace—neither of whom are scared of dipping into the Championship to recruit—has been mooted, while West Ham United are another heavyweight who could take a look.

Benrahma’s genius could make him a big hit at the London Stadium if he were to make the move across the capital.

Wilfried Zaha

Eternally linked with a move away from Crystal Palace, could this be the window when Zaha finally gets his move away from South London?

It’s looking increasingly unlikely.

The wideman has started the season strongly, and Eagles head coach Roy Hodgson has spoken openly about the prospect of losing his talisman, but as yet, he remains at Selhurst Park as the hours tick down.

Now 27, he still has some big years ahead of him, but Arsenal shied away from a deal last summer as they instead moved for Nicolas Pepe, and only ambitious Everton are rumoured to be considering a late move.

European suitors like Borussia Dortmund and PSG appear to have faded from view.

Thomas Partey

Heavily linked with Arsenal throughout the transfer window, the Gunners are yet to prise the Ghana powerhouse from his contract at Atletico Madrid, despite a realistic fee-release clause.

However, at the time of writing, the Gunners are yet to shell out the £40 million required to snare the midfielder from Atleti, even though he’s reportedly open to a move to the Premier League.

It appears as though Mikel Arteta cannot finance a move for Partey unless he offloads some of his squad’s dead wood, so without significant departures—think Matteo Guendouzi, Lucas Torreira or Sead Kolasinac—this one may have to wait.