PSG signing of Ziyech left hanging, Terem Moffi joins Nice

Paris Saint-Germain’s attempt to sign Chelsea winger Hakim Ziyech apparently hit a late snag Wednesday as the January transfer window came to a close without an official announcement from the clubs.

Soon after the midnight deadline, PSG said it loaned goalkeeper Keylor Navas to Nottingham Forest until the end of the season, but there was no word on the expected arrival — also on loan — of Ziyech.

According to newspaper L’Equipe, both clubs reached an agreement but the signing of Ziyech was not immediately validated by the French league because Chelsea submitted some documents too late.

PSG is counting on Ziyech to add some creativity in midfield ahead of a crucial period for the French champions.

PSG has been struggling since the start of the new year, with two defeats in its last four league matches.

Ziyech showed his creative abilities and technical skills with Morocco at the World Cup last year, helping the team reach the semifinals. But he has not enjoyed the same kind of form in the Premier League in recent seasons and is no longer a regular starter at Stamford Bridge.

PSG, whose ambition is still to win the Champions League for the first time this year, only has a few weeks to rediscover its attacking spark: it hosts Bayern in the first leg of their round-of-16 match in the Champions League on Feb. 14.

“We have to find some consistency in our matches, at the moment we are playing with too much fluctuation in quality, there are tough moments in a season, we have to turn things around,” PSG coach Christophe Galtier said on Tuesday.

On a busy deadline day in France, Nice signed Terem Moffi after beating southern rival Marseille for the prolific Nigeria striker on the final day of the transfer window.

Nice said Moffi, who joined from French club Lorient and has been one of the best players in the league this season, signed a loan deal with a obligation to make the deal permanent.

“We’re delighted that Terem’s determination to sign for OGC Nice, combined with our own, has led to this outcome,” Nice president Jean-Pierre Rivère said. “It’s an investment that matches our ambitions.”

The 23-year-old Moffi arrived in the French league in 2020 after stints in Lithuania and Belgium. He scored 35 goals in 90 matches with Lorient. Moffi’s 12 goals this season put him second in the scoring chart, one behind Paris Saint-Germain forward Kylian Mbappé.

Marseille was interested in signing Moffi, with the striker set to be part of a reported swap deal that would see Bamba Dieng sign with Lorient. The Senegal forward did sign a four-year deal with Lorient last week, but Moffi opted for Nice.

Nice said Moffi could start as soon as Sunday against Marseille, which turned its focus toward highly-rated Braga striker Vitinha. The 22-year-old Vitinha, who was also courted by Southampton, finalized a long-term deal until June 2027 with the 1993 Champions League winners. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed but L’Equipe reported that Marseille paid 32 million euros ($34.8 million) for Vitinha, making him the most expensive player in the club’s history.

Bidding for a Champions League birth next season, Marseille had already reinforced its midfield with the arrival of Morocco international Azzedine Ounahi from Angers. Ounahi has excellent dribbling skills and an attacking profile likely to fit coach Igor Tudor’s vision.

Hoping for a boost after a so far disappointing season, seven-time champion Lyon signed Botafogo striker Jeffinho until the end of June 2027. Lyon said the transaction was worth 10 million euros ($10.9 million), with possible add-ons of up to 2.5 million euros ($2.7 million) depending on the club’s results and the player’s performance.

The 23-year-old Jeffinho scored twice in 24 games for Botafogo in last year’s Brazilian topflight. His arrival came a day after Lyon signed another forward, Swedish youth international Amin Sarr, in a move aimed at compensating for the departures of Karl Toko Ekambi and Tete.

John Textor, who in December completed his takeover of Lyon, is the majority owner of Botafogo.

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