We are just three months away from the opening of summer transfer window. The 2016-17 season has reached its business end. While some teams are still playing competitively on multiple fronts, there are others who have nothing left to play for. The transfer window is an opportunity for several clubs to improve their squads by splashing the cash. Here is a look at 10 high-profile players who could be on the move this summer.
10- Tiemoue Bakayoko
Current Club – AS Monaco
The midfield general has been extremely influential for a trailblazing Monaco side this season. Still only 22-year-old, the Frenchman has started banging the doors of the national team. He is big, strong and good on the ball. The right footed defensive midfielder has been linked with a move to Chelsea this season. The Blues have been looking for a backup for N’Golo Kante and have identified Bakayoko as the man for the job. He will surely a have of host clubs to choose from should he decide to leave.
9- Alexandre Lacazette
Current Club – Olympique Lyon
Lacazette has been the centre of transfer speculation since the last summer transfer window. Arsenal came very close to signing him with an offer of 29 million euros. Recently, reports have emerged of him agreeing a ‘verbal contract’ with the Rojiblancos. Atletico are currently amidst a transfer ban but hope to be eligible to register players in the summer of 2017. The player himself has claimed that he’ll be leaving Lyon at the end of the current season. He is looking for a “change of air” and a move to either England and Spain is highly likely.
8- Ivan Rakitic
Current Club – Barcelona
The 29-year-old Croation is a dynamic midfielder. He moved to the club in 2014 after his back to back Europa League success with Sevilla. A great sportsman, he has not been featured for Barcelona this season as much as he would like. Some underwhelming performances coupled with a sour relationship with his manager, Luiz Enrique, has seen his game time limited. Pep Guardiola is a fan of the player and is looking to sign the experienced Croatian. Seeing how much power the Spaniard holds at the Etihad, it won’t be a surprise if Rakitic wears the blue of Manchester next season.
7- Kylian Mbappe
Current Club – AS Monaco
The teenage sensation has been on fire in the French Ligue 1. He has scored 19 goals and assisted 11. At the age of just 19 years, he has been linked with some European heavyweights. Ramos recently said that Mbappe would be welcome at Madrid with open arms.
His transfer to Real Madrid looks very likely as he is a self-professed Cristiano Ronaldo fan. He will act as an able backup for the BBC, all the while learning under the French great Zinedine Zidane. Some might say that it is too early for the Frenchman to leave Monaco but then again a better chance might never come.
6- Real Madrid’s search for a Goalkeeper
Madrid’s current goalkeeper, Keylor Navas, has cost them a few points in the league this season. He has had an error prone with his positioning coming under serious criticism. Madrid will move for a goalkeeper this summer. They will either go for Chelsea shot stopper, Thibaut Courtois or for their long-term target, David De Gea. Both are fairly young goalkeepers and have almost a decade of top class football in them. Madrid almost signed De Gea in 2015 but a last minute fax machine gaffe cost them his signature. Courtois, on the other hand, has been reportedly unsettled at Chelsea for a few times. Another name on the list is that of Hugo Lloris but he has recently signed a long-term deal and age is also another factor for his potential transfer. Surely, it is a matter of who and not when Madrid will buy a goalkeeper.
5- Phillipe Coutinho
Current Club – Liverpool
Phillipe Coutinho is a magician. A little inconsistent but holds the key to any defence on his day. His story mirrors that of his former teammate, Luis Suarez. He recently signed a long-term deal to keep him at the club just like Suarez and Barcelona players have been talking up about his move to the Blaugrana just like they did with Suarez. Coutinho is an undoubted talent with all the Brazilian flair. He would be able to fill the Iniesta shaped hole in the Barca midfield. A move this summer is definitely on the cards, whether it materialises or not is a different story altogether.
4- James Rodriguez
Current Club – Real Madrid
James arrived with much fanfare in the summer of 2014. A great first season was followed by two underwhelming seasons for the Colombian. He clearly has no place in Zidane’s preferred 4-3-3 formation. Rodriguez’s career has stalled at the Bernabeu and the player has been looking for a move away from the club. Manchester United are interested in bringing the player to England. According to reports, the player himself wants a move to Bayern Munich. It is important to note that Carlo Ancelotti is the manager of Bayern who was his first manager at Real.
3- Romelu Lukaku
Current Club – Everton
Romelu Lukaku is leaving the Merseyside and there is no doubt in that. The only thing that is in doubt is his destination. Heavyweights like Atletico, Chelsea and Manchester United have been linked with the big Belgian. He has great finishing and strength to hold off defenders. A good finisher like him can thrive in any league but Premier League might be the most suitable for him. With Diego Costa possibly moving to China, Lukaku has a ready-made place for himself in the Chelsea first eleven.
2- Alexis Sanchez
Current Club – Arsenal
Sanchez is one of the most hard working players in the English top division. He has been at Arsenal since 2014 and has made a huge impact at the London club. His recent bust-up with Arsene Wenger has made his transfer almost a certainty. He has been linked with Juventus and PSG. It seemed that the French club lead the race for his signature but the recent reports tell a different story altogether. Sanchez said that he’d like to stay in London and thus making Chelsea his most likely destination much to the fury of Arsenal fans.
1- Antoine Griezmann
Current Club – Atletico Madrid
Griezmann has been a revelation at Los Colchoneros since his move from Real Sociedad. From a player who was considered very good at an average club, he has gone on to become the third best player in the league. He has to lead the line at Atletico with great conviction and has scored loads of goals. He is not a traditional striker and can play across the front line. Griezmann has great pace, ball control and movement. He would easily slot in the first eleven of any club. Manchester United seems like his most likely destination with a quoted price of 85 million euros.