Ponce deadline approaching, Alef leaves
AEK are still holding out hope of keeping prolific Argentinian striker Ezequiel Ponce in Athens, while Brazilian midfielder Alef confirmed his departure from the club.
Ponce was a revelation for AEK in the 2018/2019 season, scoring a large 21 goals across all competitions while playing on loan from AS Roma. Naturally, AEK are eager to keep Ponce on their books, but the 22-year-old is known for wanting a move to a stronger European championship.
If AEK pay Roma six million euros, they will automatically activate his release clause, but club owner Dimitris Melissanidis is highly unlikely to pay that kind of money for any player.
Instead of a permanent deal, AEK want to loan Ponce for another season. In order for that to happen, Ponce must sign a new contract with Roma, because his current agreement with the Italian giants is due to expire in June 2020. AEK are in contact with Roma as they attempt to somehow find a solution which keeps Ponce in the Greek capital for the 2019/2020 campaign.
There is still the option of AEK purchasing Ponce. In the event AEK pay six million, Roma will maintain a 30% resale rate, but if the Kitrinomavri cough up seven million, that percentage is reduced to 15%. It’s worth noting that Newell’s Old Boys, Ponce’s former team in Argentina, hold a 40% resale rate for the striker.
AEK must pay a first installment of 1.5 million by June 16 if they are to sign Ponce from Roma.
Transfermarkt rate Ponce’s value at four million.
AEK NOT WILLING TO SELL LIVAJA CHEAP
Last year, AEK signed Marko Livaja on a permanent deal from Las Palmas, and foreign clubs are now reportedly showing interest in the Croatian forward.
However, if AEK are to sell Livaja, bids have to exceed six million. AEK have already stated that they will not consider any offers below that figure.
During the 2018/2019 season, 25-year-old Livaja competed in 38 games in all tournaments with AEK, contributing with 12 goals and eight assists. He missed five of the six UEFA Champions League group stage matches as a result of suspension.
Livaja is rated at four million by Transfermarkt.
AEK turned down the opportunity to sign SC Braga defensive midfielder Alef on a permanent basis.
In June 2018, Alef joined AEK on loan from Braga, subsequently playing in 36 matches for the Enosis and scoring twice. AEK had the chance to sign Alef by activating his release clause, but the club made the decision to let him go. Alef is under contract at Braga until the completion of the 2019/2020 season.
Alef confirmed his departure via Instagram after AEK had informed him that they wouldn’t be signing him:
RUMOUR CONCERNING GHANAIAN WINGER TWUMASI
A post on Instagram has fuelled rumours that Patrick Twumasi, a Ghanaian winger currently playing for Alaves, will shortly join AEK.
On Instagram, Twumasi’s brother uploaded an image suggesting that his sibling is on the verge of signing for AEK:
The post has now been deleted.
In the summer of 2018, Twumasi transferred to Alaves from FC Astana, but the versatile winger struggled to make an impact in Spain as he only played in 11 La Liga matches. In the past, Twumasi represented Spartaks Jurmala and Amkar Perm.
Twumasi’s contract at Alaves runs to June 2022.
HOLMEN DEAL OFF
Recently, it seemed that Swedish centre-back Sebastian Holmen was on his way to AEK, but newly appointed manager Miguel Cardoso has asked the management to not go ahead with the transfer.
After receiving the job as AEK boss, Cardoso revealed that he doesn’t want to sign Holmen, and the Kitrinomavri will now search for different defensive options. AEK had already been in advanced discussions with Holmen, with the 27-year-old available on a free transfer from Russian outfit Dynamo Moscow. Holmen moved to Dynamo Moscow in February 2016 from IF Elfsborg.
TRAINING CAMP TO BEGIN THREE DAYS EARLY
Originally, AEK were due to return from the summer holidays for pre-season on June 27, but that date has now been put forward to June 24 after a request made by Miguel Cardoso.
The players will then fly to Poland on July 2 for the maiden training camp with four friendlies scheduled. The first friendly game will take place against Maccabi Netanya.
The goalkeeping situation is yet to sort itself out. AEK are willing to cash in on Greek international Vasilis Barkas, but so far, they haven’t received any worthy offers for the 25-year-old. Daniel Correia, who has previously worked with the likes of Iker Casillas at FC Porto, is the new AEK goalkeeper coach and wants his new players to improve their skills with the ball at their feet so that they can provide better distribution.