Transfer window: Who will be the big recruits, who has the cash and what about the Covid?

ByRichard C. Sloan

Jul 4, 2021

All eyes may be on the heyday of Euro 2020, but with the new season just over a month away, clubs are busy looking at summer transfers.

Manchester United took the first big step with a £ 73million deal for Jadon Sancho, but who else could change clubs? Will a Euro star arrive in the Premier League? And how is the coronavirus pandemic affecting things?

BBC Sport is examining how this transfer window might play out.

Who will be the big transfers?

Few deals this summer will go beyond Sancho’s move to United.

Two players who could attract higher fees, however, are England Harry kane and Jack Grealish, both wanted by Manchester City.

Kane, 27, clearly he wants to leave Tottenham, who have shown no desire to release a player who still has three years on his contract. Indeed, they told new boss Nuno Espirito Santo that they expected the England captain to stay.

Aston Villa talks about its chances of keep midfielder Grealish, 25, but few expect them to be successful. This has been denied by all parties, but speculation will not go away that a deal to take Grealish to City has already been made.

English central defender Ben Blanc, 23, could move on to Arsenal – with Brighton able to command a decent fee after tying him to a new contract last summer.

West Ham have made it known they are unwilling to sell the 22-year-old England midfielder Declan rice – but that doesn’t mean they won’t.

And if West Ham are vulnerable to losing Rice, aren’t Leeds in the same situation as their England midfielder Kalvin Phillips, 25 years old, who also excels on a stage superior to that which is offered to him at the level of the club?

Since he missed the Euro due to a lack of playing time, the midfielder Harry winks, 25 years old, can leave Tottenham. And if Kane and Grealish make it to Manchester City, there will also be departures from the Etihad Stadium, with the Brazilian striker’s future going Gabriel Jesus, 24 years old and Portuguese midfielder Bernardo Silva, 26, open to question.

As has been the case virtually every summer since joining Manchester United in 2016, there is speculation about that of Paul Pogba future.

The French midfielder, 28, has been in talks with United over extending a contract that expires in 2022. If he doesn’t sign, United risk losing him for nothing in 12 months or trying to do so. sell in a depressed market for a lot less than the £ 89million they paid for. But if he signs, he’ll almost certainly get a raise at a time when many are wondering if it’s worth one.

Far from the Premier League, Lionel Messi, 34, is expected to stay in Barcelona, ​​despite become a free agent after letting his contract expire. Talk about Cristiano Ronaldo The return to Manchester United continues to fluctuate, but it would cost a lot of money to get the Portuguese captain, 36, out of Juventus a year before his contract expires.

Who really has the money?

Manchester City and Paris St-Germain have some flexibility in their spending, as their financial strength has protected them from the worst of the pandemic.

For others, it’s about manipulating finances. This could be either by getting a rolling credit facility, like Manchester United did, by launching a stock sale, like Juventus said last Wednesday that they intended to do, simple loans or the realization of assets – which could mean the sale of players, land or buildings.

And the stars of the Euro?

It’s a well-known saying that clubs shouldn’t buy players purely on the basis of their performance in big tournaments. It does happen, however – and there is talent to be sought.

Considering Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal’s performances at West Ham last season – and the Czech Republic’s impact at Euro 2020 by reaching the quarter-finals – don’t be surprised if a few of their teammates come. in the Premier League. .

Striker Patrick Schick, 25, only has a 12-month five-year contract at Bayer Leverkusen – but they missed out on the Champions League next season and could listen to offers.

Belgian winger Jeremy Doku, 19, drew attention in the quarter-final loss to Italy. Signed by French club Rennes Anderlecht last year, he has a contract until 2025.

Italy’s progress will see many of their star men in demand – although one of their standouts, the Roma full-back Leonardo of Spinazzola, 28 years old, left for a long period of inaction after breaking his Achilles tendon against Belgium. His contract in Rome runs until 2024.

Midfielder of Sassuolo Manuel Locatelli, 23, who has scored twice so far in the tournament, has been linked with Juventus and Arsenal.

A player linked to a move towards Italy joins Roma is the Swiss midfielder of Arsenal Granite Xhaka, 28.

Xhaka has divided opinions during his five years in north London but was a key factor in his country’s run to the quarter-finals, before suspension ruled him out of the loss to Spain.

Netherlands and rear winger of PSV Eindhoven Denzel Dumfries, 25, impressed as his team reached the last 16. Bayern Munich, Everton, AC Milan and Inter Milan are all reportedly interested.

Portuguese midfielder Renato Sanches Flopped on loan at Swansea in 2017-18, but the 23-year-old won the French title at Lille last season and impressed at Euro 2020. He has been linked with Liverpool and Arsenal.

Danish midfielder Mikkel damsgaard, 21, arrived at the Euro to replace Christian Eriksen. But having been called up after Eriksen suffered cardiac arrest in their opener, he put on an admirable performance.

This means that interest is growing in Damsgaard, which has a contract with Sampdoria until 2024.

And the covid?

It is impossible to underestimate the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on club finances.

President Daniel Levy estimates Tottenham lost £ 200million – a huge sum for a club trying to pay for a £ 1billion stadium that was supposed to generate more revenue than any of its rivals from Premier League.

In fact, smaller top clubs suffered less because TV money – which has continued to flow in – constitutes a larger portion of their income, as opposed to income generated on match days. It remains to be seen whether these clubs are therefore in a better position to resist offers from their top players.

The impact of non-match day income is also expected to be felt in England’s second tier, which could impact transfer activity. Six clubs in next season’s Championship will receive parachute payouts – Fulham, West Brom, Sheffield United, Bournemouth, Cardiff and Huddersfield – which will give them a major advantage, in theory. Huddersfield, however, is using theirs to pay off debt, which has cut back on spending.

In Europe there is an additional problem. Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus, among others, had already stretched out trying to compete with their English rivals, whose TV revenues are so much bigger. The impact of Covid-19 has exacerbated these problems.

Barcelona’s debt, for example, exceeds € 1 billion, which is why they make free transfers, like Sergio Aguero and Memphis Depay.

This means that while other clubs are considering major purchases, Barca’s biggest signing will likely involve keeping their star player. Signing Messi to a new contract may seem, to them, as a triumph as great as any successful deal announced elsewhere this summer.

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