The times they are a-changing. With so many high profile players and a manager who has been in charge at a club longer than I’ve been alive, all retiring, it feels as though football is moving into a new era.
Silly season is now well underway and if press reports are to be believed there will be plenty of movement in this summers transfer window. Here we look at the top European players that will attract some of the biggest clubs across Europe. We’re going to start with no other than…
There’s always one transfer saga that threatens to run throughout the summer and this could very well be the one. Tottenham fans hang on to your hats! Gareth Bale has been in scintillating form this year for both club and country and has proved he could potentially be put in the same bracket as both Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
He has developed from a left-winger with a wicked cross to a serious threat wherever he is on the pitch. This season he has shown us he can cut in from the right and unleash a venomous shot, whilst also possessing the power and speed to surge through the middle of teams. Like the aforementioned players, the guy can be unplayable when he wants to be and can score all types of goals.
With this is mind it is obvious he has the footballing acumen to be playing in the Champions League. The Premier Leagues top 3 have all been touted as possible suitors to Bale, but at this moment in time Spanish giants, Real Madrid, look like they have the more realistic chance of adding Bale to their star studded squad and Mr. Galáctico himself, Zinedine Zidane has been tasked with luring the Welsh man to the Bernabéu.
If he does leave then Daniel Levy will be sure to drive a hard bargain as he has for his biggest players in the past. However, rumours of a £75million fee seem off the mark. Cristiano Ronaldo left Manchester United in 2009 for only £5million more having consistently been one of the clubs top goal scorers, delivering silverware along the way, but if that sort of money was offered surely Tottenham would find it too hard to turn down?
Much has been said for Bale’s down to earth and rounded personality and at the age of 23 I believe he should and will stay at Tottenham for one more season, the club that has nurtured him into the talent he is today. If spurs can add a top quality striker to their squad then there is no reason why they cannot qualify for the Champions League this year round. Speaking of strikers…
Nobody can deny Suarez’s ability as a footballer and with 23 goals in 33 league appearances he has had his best season in a Liverpool shirt during his 3-year stint at the club. However, it has recently emerged that Suarez now wants out of Liverpool FC. His time in England has been tempered with a number of disciplinary issues including high-profile cases such as the racism affair with Patrice Evra and more recently, the biting of Branislav Ivanovic. He has cited his persecution by the English press as the main reason behind his need to move on to pastures new.
The news will come as a bitter blow to Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers who has always been a staunch defender and fan of the striker despite some of his controversial antics. The fact that Suarez seemed to be building an effective partnership with both of Rodgers’ January signings, Daniel Sturridge and Philipe Coutinho adds to the blow, but most importantly where can you find another Suarez? His style of football is what set him apart from so many other great players.
With Real Madrid unsure on how their pursuit of Gareth Bale will end and that the 2nd man on their transfer hit list, Sergio Aguero, has recently signed a one year contract extension with Manchester City, Suarez looks like the man they have identified to appease their fans. He has already stated that he wants to leave, this one just seems like a matter of time until the Uruguayan heads to the Spanish capital.
It’s all change at the helm of the Premier League Champions as Manchester United manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, announced his retirement after an incredible 26 years in charge of the team. David Moyes has been appointed as the man to lead them into a new era, but will this be with or without Wayne Rooney?
Ferguson let it be known at the end of last season that Wayne Rooney had intermitted to him that he saw his future away from Old Trafford. Moyes and Rooney have history. Not only did Moyes coach the player as a teenager during their time at Everton together, but he also sued him for libel damages after false accusations in Rooney’s autobiography.
They are believed to have reconciled their differences since then, but with Moyes looking to put his own stamp on the club and raise funds for other potential transfers, Rooney may be seen as surplus to requirements. It is no secret that United’s midfield needs strengthening and even an inconsistent Wayne Rooney can attract a bid of around £30million. Arsenal and PSG have both been mentioned as possible destinations for Rooney. Moyes may be willing to move him on in order to get his number one transfer target, which he has reportedly identified already…
With the arrival of Brazilian sensation Neymar, Cesc Fabregas’ Barcelona future has been put into jeopardy. The samba star will surely knock Fabregas further down the pecking order and with David Villa also confirming that he wants to stay at the club, something in Barcelona’s attack force has to give.
Moyes has had a long-standing interest in Fabregas and even tried to sign him on loan at Everton as a youngster. It seems that he has now targeted him as the answer to Manchester United’s midfield conundrum. Of course there will be plenty of interest in this caliber of player, not least at Arsenal where it is believed they have first refusal after selling their former captain to the Catalan side.
Fabregas has struggled to make the desired impact at Barca due to his lack of game time and thus form. Both parties will still want to make it work, however if the price is right, the lure of regular football and the opportunity to be part of a new era at Manchester United may just turn the Spaniards head. Moyes also has his eyes on Fabregas’ teammate and compatriot, Thiago Alacantara, should a move for the former Arsenal man not come to fruition.
Every great team needs a great striker and Edison Cavani certainly falls into that category. He’s a name that has been touted with the ‘big boys’ in the Premier League for the last few seasons due to his impressive performances with Serie A club Napoli.
The Uruguayan front man is a classic striker who comes alive in the 18-yard box. His height as well as his speed and power pose a serious threat to any defence in world football. This season he has bagged 29 goals in 34 league appearances, which has attracted the interest of both Manchester City and Chelsea.
The player himself has recently gone on record as saying he would welcome the opportunity to work under potential City manager Manuel Pellegrini, as well as Chelsea’s Jose Mourinho. However the newly installed Napoli boss, Rafa Benitez, will not want to see his prize asset leave and any club interested in the player will have to pay the full amount of his buy -out clause, rumoured to be at an enormous £53 million. To soften the financial blow, Chelsea may try to use Fernando Torres as bait as part of the deal.
These are just some of the biggest moves that may happen during the summer transfer window. There are sure to be plenty more, with lots of twists, turns and surprises on the way. I for one can’t wait to see what happens next…