What a difference a year makes. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, football clubs have taken some drastic steps to cut their spending in the January transfer window. As a result, the big strides that spark interest in the game at this time of year are nowhere to be seen. January is traditionally a quieter time than the summer window, but given the global economic crisis caused by the pandemic, the numbers are difficult to read.
Jump to: US players linked | Free agents | Expiring contracts Premier League clubs | European clubs
In January 2020 according to the transfer tracking website TransfermarktThe Premier League clubs spent a little over € 242 million on 88 arrivals. In January 2021, the difference is clear: the expenses for 35 arrivals are only 71 million euros. The situation is similar with German Bundesliga clubs (196 million euros in 2020 compared to 41 million euros in 2021), Spanish La Liga clubs (152 million euros compared to 32 million euros), the Italian Serie A (215 million euros compared to 61 million euros) Million euros) and the French Ligue 1 clubs (€ 124 million versus € 26 million) are all doing the same thing.
The transfer window can bring us some surprises – Odion Ighalo finally joined Man United on the January 2020 deadline – so some things may stand out. However, this month it might just be loan deals, swaps, or free bank transfers. So if you are looking for news about 100 million euro offers for the Borussia Dortmund couple Erling Haaland and Jadon Sancho, Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly or Manchester United midfielder Paul PogbaYou will likely be disappointed. Even the legend of Barcelona Lionel Messi postpones the decision about his future until summer. Still, many top teams have serious needs ahead of the toughest track of the season.
What does the deadline hold? Who are the players who are available for a bargain and what else do the top clubs in Europe have to do? * All fees via Transfermarkt
Entry deadline February 1st: Bundesliga (Noon ET) | Series A. (2 p.m. ET) | Premier League (6:00 p.m. ET) | La Liga (6:00 p.m. ET) | Ligue 1 (6:00 p.m. ET)
What are the top stories for the elite clubs in Europe?
– – Money is short. There have been fewer than 20 deals in Europe’s “Big Five” leagues with transfer fees attached to this window. Loan moves and free transfers were high on the agenda.
– – Liverpool need a center-back after an injury from Joel Matip and was able to move for experience. The New York Red Bulls and USMNT defenseman Aaron Long, West Ham’s Issa Diop and Arsenal’s Shkodran Mustafi have been linked.
– – Arsenal are chasing a replacement left-back after Kieran Tierney. Ryan Bertrand of Southampton, Jordan Amavi, defender of Marseille, and Patrick van Aanholt of Crystal Palace are considered. You could also borrow Ainsley Maitland-Niles.
– – PSG are looking to loan Tottenham midfielder Dele Alli. However, Spurs chairman Daniel Levy hesitates over letting a player who was previously so influential at the club leave the team. Tottenham will also have to sign a replacement if they let him go.
– – Barcelona and Real Madrid have no money for signings. They may need to strengthen themselves after bad form this season, but both Spanish giants look handcuffed until the summer.
Mark Ogden estimates where Dayot Upamecano will end up this summer when he leaves RB Leipzig.
Which players could get a move before the deadline?
Dayot Upamecano:: With a release clause of 42 million euros that came into force in the summer, the defender of RB Leipzig is expected to remain in custody this month. All of Europe’s top clubs are after him, however, and it is possible that one (Chelsea or Liverpool?) Could try an early move to steal a march from their rivals.
Dele Alli:: After being a key player under Mauricio Pochettino at Tottenham, Alli fell under Jose Mourinho. Now the midfielder is nothing more than a backup and PSG are dying to loan him back with Pochettino.
Christian Eriksen: After moving from Tottenham to Inter Milan just a year ago, the 28-year-old midfielder was told he could leave the club but he could stay now. His injury-time free kick against rivals AC Milan in Coppa Italia’s quarter-finals on Tuesday could have breathed new life into him. Arsenal were very interested in November before signing Martin Odegaard but now a return to Spurs is possible for Eriksen if they move Alli on and work a deal.
Edin Dzeko: The 34-year-old has been linked to both a return to Manchester City and rival United, but talks have been about an exchange deal between Roma and Inter Milan where Roma also loaned Alexis Sanchez.
Joshua Zirkzee:: The young Bayern Munich striker didn’t get a lot of playing time, which is difficult when Robert Lewandowski lies in the pecking order in front of you. A loan move to Everton or Parma was reported by sky Germany, with Parma most likely to land it.
Yves Bissouma:: The Brighton midfielder has been closely followed by Liverpool, sources Julien Laurens of ESPN said. Manager Jürgen Klopp sees him as a possible replacement for Georginio Wijnaldumwho no longer has a contract in the summer. If Wijnaldum moves before the window closes, £ 30million could land in Bissouma, although Arsenal, Man United, Chelsea and Real Madrid are also linked.
Julien Laurens suggests USMNT prospect Bryan Reynolds will do better at Roma than at Juventus.
Are there any US players connected in Europe?
Chris Richards:: Bayern Munich and the United States defender will loan Hoffenheim for six months, a source told ESPN’s Tom Hamilton. With this change, Richards can play again under the former Bayern reserve team boss Sebastian Hoeneß, who is now responsible for Hoffenheim.
Bryan Reynolds:: Roma are to sign the right-back of FC Dallas, sources said Tom Hamilton of ESPN. The 19-year-old caught the interest of both Juventus and Club Brugge but the Roma are now in pole position. The Roma have agreed to a deal that would originally bring Reynolds to Italy on loan but are required to sign the player for € 7m plus add-ons.
Aaron Long: The New York Red Bulls and USMNT center-back was linked to a move to championship side Reading a few days ago, but sources told ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle he is now on Liverpool’s radar. Named MLS Defender of the Year in 2018, the 28-year-old Long could be a cheap option for Jurgen Klopp despite a refusal to move to an undisclosed championship club.
Chris Gloster: PSV Eindhoven and USMNT left-back has sparked interest at Newcastle United, a source told ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle. But any move to the Premier League would depend on Gloster to get a work permit to work in the UK, and it seems that won’t happen. Instead, he could join the Danish club SonderjyskE (with US owners) or stay with PSV.
DeAndre Yedlin:: The United States right-back is slated to move from Newcastle United to Galatasaray, ESPN sources said Tom Hamilton. Yedlin, 27, is said to be traveling to Turkey for medical treatment after both clubs agreed a fee for his signing.
Paul Arriola:: Swansea City is keen to recruit the D.C. United to join its roster, sources told ESPN. The championship team has already won Jordan Morris on a loan deal with the Seattle Sounders and has returned to America interested in another US star. Sources said there was a “50-50” chance the deal would hit before Monday, with Swansea and D.C. United are in talks.
Caden Clark:: The New York Red Bulls midfielder will join RB Leipzig in January 2022, although he has played less than 400 minutes in the first team so far. The athlete reports the 17-year-old will be moving for around $ 3 million but will be on loan in New York for a year.
How about free agents?
Diego Costa:: Incredibly, the former Chelsea striker is linked to Manchester City after terminating his contract with Atletico Madrid. With Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero Costa struggled for fitness and would certainly do a job, however after Sid Lowe The 32-year-old would have to “pay a fine of 15 million euros if he joins a team in La Liga or the Champions League”.
Samir Nasri: The former playmaker of Arsenal and Manchester City has been without a club since leaving Anderlecht last summer. At 33 he has to prove himself again and AC Milan should keep an eye on him.
Neven Subotic:: After his contract with Denizlispor ends, Subotic will be available at a time when a number of top clubs are looking for a replacement defender. At 32, despite some injury problems, he still has a few years at the top and could be of interest to many managers, including his former boss at Borussia Dortmund, Klopp.
ESPN FC’s Mark Ogden rates the best move for Manchester City defender Eric Garcia.
Some players have contracts that are expiring. Will you move?
Eric Garcia:: Manchester City don’t want to let him go for free next summer but Barcelona don’t have the money to sign the 20-year-old defender. As a result, he may have to wait for PSG or Arsenal to be late or for the Catalan club to somehow work to make a deal. The player himself is ready to play for free, but will City let him go?
Georginio Wijnaldum: Much like above, if he doesn’t sign a new deal at Liverpool, Wijnaldum is likely to leave for Barca this summer. However, it is very unlikely to move as Liverpool need a midfield replacement and Barca run out of money if they don’t get creative.
Memphis Depay:: Barcelona and Juventus are the two clubs most associated with the Lyon winger. However, a fee of over € 20 million is required to land this month.
Florian Thauvin:: The 28-year-old midfielder, whose future looks bleak in Marseille, has received interest from Tottenham, Leicester, Napoli, Milan, Roma and Seville. It looks like he might be leaving this month.
Joshua King:: Manchester United were keen on King around this time last year but interest waned and the Bournemouth striker was relegated at the end of the season. Now Burnley, West Ham and West Brom offer him a way out.
Not until summer
David Alaba:: The one player they all want. The 28-year-old defender cannot or does not want to sign a new contract with Bayern and can choose between Europe’s elite clubs. He will be given a free transfer, most likely to Real Madrid, although there could be some twists and turns along the way before he makes up his mind.
Sergio Ramos:: Manchester City are closely monitoring Ramos’ situation at Real Madrid in order to sign him as a free agent, ESPN’s Rodrigo Faez sources said, while PSG have also reportedly made him an offer. Ramos will turn 35 in March but he’s still top notch and it looks like he’s going to move on.
Lionel Messi: The world will be waiting for Messi’s decision this summer. He won’t move until then, and he might even sign a new deal depending on who wins the club’s presidential election in March, but Man City, PSG, various MLS teams including NYCFC and Newell’s Old Boys are in the running, if he wants to go.
Sergio Aguero: Coupled with Barcelona as a possible replacement for Messi, Man City’s all-time scorer could move away from Etihad. He will have a choice of clubs but at 32 he is a little young to consider retiring from the former Independiente club.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Gianluigi Donnarumma and Hakan Calhanoglu:: Gab Marcotti wrote about the trio earlier this month and Milan needs them all to keep up their challenge for the Serie A title this season.
Gab Marcotti explains why Paul Pogba at Man United would be a big coup for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
What else do the big teams need?
INS: Amad Diallo (£ 19m, Atalanta)
OUTSIDE: Ethan Laird (Loan, MK Dons), Timothy Fosu-Mensah (£ 1.75m, Bayer Leverkusen), Jesse Lingard (loan, West Ham), Tahith Chong (loan, Club Brugge), James Garner (loan, Nottingham Forest), Facundo Pellistri (loan, Alaves)
After the arrival of 18-year-old Amad Diallo, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer still believes he’ll miss two or three players, but newcomers – likely a center-back and a striker – will have to wait until the summer. Marcos Rojo and Sergio Romero have been given permission to speak to other teams and may leave before the deadline. Facundo Pellistri Jesse Lingard was loaned to Alaves as he has been limited to U23 games since signing that summer. He was loaned to West Ham, but the club has turned down requests Donny van de Beek. Sources told ESPN that Manchester United were ready to wait for the West Ham midfielder Declan riceBorussia Dortmund’s winger Jadon Sancho remains a goal. – – Rob Dawson
OUTSIDE: Liam Millar (Loan, Charlton), Adam Lewis (loan, Plymouth)
A center-back has been talking to Alaba and Upamecano all the window and Joel Matip’s injury could mean one arrives if they can. Center-back of Lille Sven Botman is on the radar of a number of clubs in England, including Liverpool, sources told ESPN, while Ajax’s Perr Schuurs was also taken into account. But Klopp needs to get creative when there isn’t enough cash and could turn to the New York Red Bulls and USMNT defender Aaron Long, or maybe West Ham’s Issa Diop or Arsenal’s Shkodran Mustafi.
Brighton’s midfielder Bissouma is being closely followed by Liverpool, sources told ESPN. Manager Klopp pursued him as a potential replacement for Wijnaldum, who no longer has a contract in the summer. Derby County child prodigy Kaide Gordon, 16, was also linked. – – Mark Ogden
INS: Filip Stevanovic (£ 7m, Partizan Belgrade)
OUTSIDE: Morgan Rogers (loan, Lincoln), Mix Diskerud (not announced, Denizlispor), Daniel Arzani (loan, AGF)
Manchester City have come to terms with losing center-back Garcia to Barcelona, either before the € 3m deadline or free in the summer. Pep Guardiola did his best to convince the 20-year-old to sign a new contract at Etihad Stadium, but Garcia was clear in his desire to return to Spain and it will eventually happen. Guardiola says he doesn’t expect any new arrivals this month, but it will focus on getting an established center-forward this summer – whatever happens to Sergio Aguero’s contract, which expires in 2021. – Rob Dawson
Jose Mourinho said Wednesday he doesn’t expect Tottenham to do business before the Monday deadline. Sources have told ESPN that Dele Alli is interested in moving to Paris Saint-Germain, but chairman Daniel Levy hesitates over letting a player who was previously so influential at the club leave the team. Levy plays his hand late in the window so nothing can definitely be ruled out, but Mourinho is happy with his squad and the club’s longer-term goals – including a center-back and a new right-back – will likely hold up until the summer. Harry Winks has been linked to a move to Valencia, although the English midfielder is expected to stay in north London. Mourinho’s frugal use of the Real Madrid borrower Gareth Bale also surprised several Tottenham players, sources told ESPN. – James Olley
According to Frank Leboeuf, Chelsea could be Thomas Tuchel’s last chance to manage a top European club.
New manager Thomas Tuchel will have plans of his own and Chelsea was dying to sign Rice before Frank Lampard was fired, but sources said the 42-year-old pushed the Blues’ pursuit of the England international while high-profile figures were at the club had reservations about paying a hefty fee – the Hammers asked for £ 80 million last summer – for a former academic. Chelsea have also been monitoring the Monaco midfielder’s progress Aurelien Tchouamenisources said Julien Laurens of ESPN, while the club intends to keep the veteran striker Olivier Giroud until the end of the season despite the interest from Inter and Juventus. Young midfielder Billy Gilmour could leave on loan while looking for game time. – – Mark Ogden
INS: Mat Ryan (loan, Brighton), Martin Odegaard (loan, Real Madrid)
OUTSIDE: William Saliba (Loan, Nice), Sead Kolasinac (Loan, Schalke), Matt Macey (free, Hibernian), Sokratis (released), Mesut Ozil (free, Fenerbahce)
Arsenal continue to hope to add a left-back before Monday. You have not yet contacted Southampton regarding a reported interest in Ryan Bertrand and have minimal funds. Marseille defender Jordan Amavi has been considered but an official offer has not yet been made and they have also been linked to Crystal Palace’s Patrick van Aanholt. Ainsley Maitland-Niles could be loaned out, but only if another full-back arrives.
Most of their business has already been done with Martin Odegaard and Mat Ryan on loan, while Mesut Ozil, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Sead Kolasinac have left the Gunners to help lower their labor costs. Manager Mikel Arteta will continue a roster overhaul this summer, with a center-back one of his priorities once Shkodran Mustafi and Calum Chambers leave. They are expected to try to sign Brentford goalkeeper David Raya, who failed with an offer last summer.
The long-term pursuit Houssem Aouar is complicated by the Lyon midfielder’s desire to wait for Real Madrid and Barcelona interest before deciding on his next move Emile Smith Rowe has made a strong impression after breaking into Arsenal’s first team but talk of a new contract is premature, sources told ESPN. – – James Olley
Archie Rhind-Tutt and Steve Cherundolo discuss the future of Erling Haaland if Dortmund cannot qualify for the Champions League.
OUTSIDE: Carles Alena (Loan, Getafe)
Since there is no money for moving, the association has to turn to the youth. There is a vague possibility that they will spend € 3m on Man City defender Garcia if they can raise that, but without a president or a board of directors it is impossible to make a decision. A source from the club told ESPN that they were hoping to keep going Neto and Junior FirpoThe latter are of interest to AC Milan and West Ham United and would also listen to reasonable offers Philippe Coutinho and Antoine Griezmann. But neither club has the money to sign the duo. The moves to Wijnaldum and Memphis Depay, or even an unlikely nosedive into Aguero, like Messi’s future, will have to wait until summer. But a lot will change in five months. – – Sam Marsden
Since there is no money to be spent at the Bernabeu, there will be no additions Karim Benzema and Mariano Diaz are the only two strikers in the squad. According to ESPN, the club wants to land in the long term Kylian Mbappe and Eduardo Camavingabut they would cost a lot and Madrid have bigger problems right now. A free transfer for Bayern star David Alaba is likely in the summer, but the future of captain and legend Sergio Ramos is unsolved. PSG and Man City want to get it for free too. Luka Modric should sign a new contract, but it seems Lucas Vazquez won’t while center-back Eder Militao has been linked with a move but should stay this month. Sources told ESPN that Odegaard felt disappointed in Madrid as he had no chance in the first team before being allowed to join Arsenal on loan. – Alex Kirkland
After winning the past transfer window with the free transfer of Luis Suarez Atletico from Barcelona had to get a replacement for Diego Costa with the loan of Moussa Dembele from Lyon. Vitolo could leave while Lucas Torreira has been a marginalized figure since he was loaned by Arsenal that summer and Monaco was interested. The club is determined to extend coach Diego Simeone’s contract until 2024. – Alex Kirkland
Not much will happen in January, but Alaba will leave in the summer after failing to agree on a new contract. A replacement could come in the form of RB Leipzig’s Upamecano, and they are also pursuing Gladbach’s Florian Neuhaus take over from Javi Martinezwho will also leave when his business ends. A new contract for young stars Jamal Musiala is on the agenda, while Bayern are still keen to sign Frenkie de JongAccording to sources, the chances of the Dutch midfielder leaving Barcelona are minimal despite the Catalan club’s financial troubles. The young US right-back Chris Richards could move to Hoffenheim on loan. – – Stephan Uersfeld
Keeping the top stars like Sancho, Haaland and Gio Reyna was the priority and that was achieved. They were linked with Sassuolo midfielder Manuel Locatelli and Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Florian Neuhaus, although its € 40 million release clause is currently too expensive for Dortmund. Mo Dahoud could leave if they get a suitable offer, while sources told ESPN that 16-year-old Julian Rijkhoff will sign from Ajax and be included in the club’s U17 selection. – – Stephan Uersfeld
OUTSIDE: This (Published), Marcin Bulka (Loan, Chateauroux)
New manager Mauricio Pochettino plans to loan Alli from Tottenham and has also been linked with another former player at Eriksen. However, the priority for PSG is to get Kylian Mbappe and Neymar sign new contracts. The club’s sporting director Leonardo said they are interested in signing Messi as his contract with Barcelona comes to an end this summer, while sources told ESPN that they have reached out to Alaba of Bavaria and allegedly Real Madrid Ramos are interested – both with free transfers. Winger Julian Draxler and Angel Di Maria should stay until the summer despite connections abroad, with Di Maria opening talks about a new contract. – Julien Laurens
INS: Marley Ake (€ 8 million, Marseille), Nicolo Rovella (€ 18 million, Genoa)
OUTSIDE: Stefano Gori (Loan, AC Pisa), Franco Tongya (€ 8 million, Marseille), Manolo Portanova (€ 10 million, Genoa), Elia Petrelli (€ 8 million, Genoa), Nicolo Rovella (loan, Genoa).
Juventus focused on getting players for the future. Sassuolo forward Gianluca Scamacca could arrive for around 25 million euros while highly rated midfielder Nicolo Rovella comes from Genoa, but will return to the club on loan. Juve’s biggest concern is lowering the age of the squad Gianluigi Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci and Cristiano Ronaldo eventually have to be replaced. Sami Khedira could also leave for Hertha Berlin.
Paulo Dybala and Federico Bernardeschi were among the players offered to Manchester United as Juventus looked for ways to land a deal to get Paul Pogba to sign Paul Pogba early in the window, sources said ESPN’s Rob Dawson. But there now seems to be an acceptance that Pogba will stay until the summer. – – Andrew Cesare Richardson
OUTSIDE: Radja Nainggolan (Loan, Cagliari), Sebastiano Esposito (loan, Venezia), Giacomo Pozzer (loan, Lucchese), Axel Bakayoko (Frei, Roter Stern)
Inter are expected to stay calm as they have continued to push for a first Serie A title since their triple winning 2009/10 season but could land a loan swap deal with Roma for Dzeko and Sanchez. Eriksen had been classified as a potential departure person. Director Beppe Marotta admitted he was on the transfer list in December but his last Coppa Italia winner on Tuesday gave him a respite. Coach Antonio Conte discovered after Tuesday’s game that the club had been working on a new position for the Danish international. Inter still have priority to become strikers Lautaro Martinez sign a new contract and they have already met with his agent. – Andrew Cesare Richardson
INS: Mario Mandzukic (Free), Fikayo Tomori (loan, Chelsea), Soualiho Meite (loan, Turin)
OUTSIDE: Andrea Conti (Loan, Parma), Leo Duarte (Loan, Istanbul Basaksehir), Lorenzo Colombo (Loan, Cremonese), Mateo Musacchio (not disclosed, Lazio)
AC Milan were busy with three players in January. You would probably have signed Mohamed Simakan from Strasbourg for around 15 million euros, he was not injured, but they loaned Tomori from Chelsea. Defender Mateo Musacchio has joined Lazio and Milan have informed Barcelona of a move for the awkward left-back Junior Firpo, sources Moises Llorens of ESPN said. New contracts (see above) for a key trio are also on the agenda. – Andrew Cesare Richardson