Sancho, Depay, Aouar and the big deals that didn't happen

The transfer deadline closed on Monday night which left a few clubs disappointed they couldn't get more business done

10:07am on Tuesday 6th October 2020
Martin Macdonald

The extended transfer window eventually closed on Monday evening with a flurry of activity.

In the Premier League, Man Utd signed Edinson Cavani and Alex Telles, while Thomas Partey joined Arsenal from Atletico Madrid. Bayern confirmed the signings of Douglas Costa and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting, with the Brazilian's former club Juventus bringing in Federico Chiesa from Fiorentina.

However, like every window there were transfer sagas that ended with the buying club not getting what they want.

The deals that didn't happen

Who: Jadon Sancho

From: Dortmund

To: Man Utd

Projected Fee: £108m

Why didn't it happen?

There's a fairly simple reason for this - Man Utd didn't meet Dortmund's asking price, who refused to budge on their £108m valuation.

It has been an embarrassing window for the Red Devils. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer made it clear that Sancho was his number one transfer target, and although negotiations lasted all summer, Man Utd kept trying to bring the price down with the promise of significant add-ons.

Dortmund remained firm, and refused to be bullied into submission. Sancho was reportedly keen on the move to United and was simply waiting for them to eventually loosen the purse strings. It didn't happen, and United ended up signing Edinson Cavani on a free transfer on deadline day.

Jadon Sancho: Form Rating, Statistics, Playing Position

Who: Memphis Depay

From: Lyon

To: Barcelona

Projected Fee: £25m

Why didn't it happen?

When Ronald Koeman was appointed Barca boss after the Champions League humiliation by Bayern, he was tasked with undertaking a squad overhaul.

He asked the Barca board to sign two players - Memphis Depay of Lyon and Gini Wijnaldum of Liverpool. However, they had to sell before they could buy. Several players left the club - Luis Suarez, Ivan Rakitic, Arturo Vidal, Nelson Semedo and Rafinha.

Semedo left for a big fee, but the money received for that transfer was spent on Sergino Dest. Personal terms had been agreed with Memphis for a while, but they were looking to offload Ousmane Dembele before they eventually pulled the trigger on a move for the Dutchman.

When Dembele's proposed move to Man Utd fell through, with the player keen to make an impression finally at the Camp Nou, the Memphis deal subsequently fell through, too.

Memphis Depay: Form Rating, Statistics, Playing Position

Who: Houssem Aouar

From: Lyon

To: Arsenal

Projected Fee: £50m

Why didn't it happen?

It is no secret that teams around Europe have been financially impacted by the worldwide pandemic, meaning that transfer fees are perhaps not as inflated as the past couple of years.

However, Arsenal's attempts to lowball Lyon with offers of around £32m for Houssem Aouar were slammed by the president of the French side, with him describing the offers as "timid".

Aouar is valued at closer to £50m by Lyon. He announced on Sunday evening that he would be remaining with the club for the moment, saying he "still had something to give" to the Champions league semi-finalists. Arsenal would end up paying £45m for Thomas Partey on deadline day anyway.

Houssem Aouar: Form Rating, Statistics, Playing Position

Who: Kalidou Koulibaly

From: Napoli

To: Man City

Projected Fee: £80m

Why didn't it happen?

Kalidou Koulibaly was long believed to be the answer to Pep Guardiola's defensive problems at Manchester City. If the pandemic didn't happen he would likely be a Man City player as even the super-rich Premier League runners-up couldn't justify paying £80m for a 29-year-old.

Napoli owner Aurelio De Laurentiis is renowned for not being bullied in the transfer market, and that was the case here as City continually attempted to bring down the price.

Liverpool were interested in Koulibaly, too, but he ended up staying at Napoli for now, with three years remaining on his current deal.

Who: Declan Rice

From: West Ham

To: Chelsea

Projected Fee: £80m

Why didn't it happen?

Declan Rice has matured into a good midfielder for West Ham United over the past season and a bit, but like with any English player his asking price was massively inflated, with the Hammers demanding around £80m.

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is a big fan of the 21-year-old, and reportedly requested that the club sign Rice on deadline day, apparently not content with the £220m already spent this summer.

One reason which could be a factor in the deal not happening is that Rice is actually a Chelsea youth product, so would Roman Abramovich be happy sanctioning a £80m deal for a player who they actually had in their ranks a few years ago?

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