The summer transfer-window is in full swing, with club’s desperately seeking the next talents who can take their side to the next level.
As always, the silly-season rumours continue to circulate, however, if there is one thing we’ve learnt from modern football is that nothing can truly be ruled out.
Several of Europe’s biggest stars have been linked with mega-money switches this summer, and here are five players we expect to be involved in massive transfer deals before the window closes…
The Atletico Madrid star announced his intention to leave the Spanish capital earlier this summer, five years after joining from La Liga rivals Real Sociedad.
The Frenchman turned down a move to Barcelona last summer to stay at Diego Simeone’s side, however, the Catalan club are expected to finally land the forward in the coming days.
The 28-year-old has established himself as one of Europe’s best in recent seasons, scoring 133 goals in 257 appearances for Atletico and helping France to World Cup glory in 2018.
Atletico’s £113m capture of Benfica starlet Joao Felix is perhaps the biggest indicator that Griezmann’s departure will be finalised soon, with Barcelona expected to trigger his release clause and secure a deal to take him to the Nou Camp – even though things are starting to get a bit messy.
Not content with landing one big-name forward this summer, Barcelona are reportedly interested in a deal which will see Brazilian superstar Neymar return to the Nou Camp this summer.
Having left Spain in a stunning £198m world-record deal in 2017, whispers have circulated that all parties are keen on a move that will see the forward return to Catalonia this summer.
Paris Saint-Germain’s project has stalled in recent seasons, and the significant sale of Neymar could bring in the funds required for an overhaul of the French champions squad this summer.
Kylian Mbappe has emerged as the Parisian’s key figure and talisman, and it is believed PSG would not be drastically opposed to allowing Neymar to leave.
Much will depend on whether Barcelona can raise the necessary funds to complete a deal, with the Spanish side reportedly willing to listen to offers for the likes of Phillipe Coutinho, Malcom and Samuel Umtiti to boost their transfer budget.
Perhaps the longest-running transfer saga of the summer, Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba is believed to have told the club in no uncertain terms of his desire to leave Old Trafford this summer.
The Frenchman is reported to have grown disillusioned with life in Manchester, with United having failed to show they possess the ability to compete for major honours since Pogba’s return to the club in 2016.
The 26-year-old remains hugely talented, however, inconsistency has been a huge factor in his three-year spell in the Premier League and United will allow the player to leave should a suitable offer of around £150 million arrive.
Real Madrid remain the favourites to sign the World Cup winner, with Zinedine Zidane having made no secret of his desire to bring his compatriot to the Bernabeu.
The Spanish giants will have to raise funds having already splashed almost £300m on the likes of Eden Hazard and Luka Jovic, though a deal is expected to be agreed.
Former club Juventus, despite having already signed midfielders Aaron Ramsey and Adrien Rabiot, are also reported to be monitoring developments.
Matthijs de Ligt
Arguably the most in-demand player in Europe this summer, the Ajax defender has attracted interest from almost every leading side on the continent.
The 19-year-old captained the Dutch side to a domestic double last season, as well as their surprise run to the semi-finals of the Champions League.
Having already seen Frenkie de Jong depart for Barcelona, Ajax had hoped to keep the bulk of their squad together, though De Ligt is expected to leave this summer.
The tug-of-war over his signing seems to have been won by Italian champions Juventus, with the player’s agent Mino Raiola confirming an agreement is in place with the Serie A side.
A fee is still yet to be agreed between Juventus and Ajax, though De Ligt’s switch to Turin is expected to be finalised in the coming weeks.
The Brazil international’s big-money move to Barcelona has not quite worked out as hoped, with reports suggesting the Spanish side will look to sell the former Liverpool star this summer.
Having established himself as one of the Premier League’s leading lights during a five-year spell at Anfield, Coutinho’s career has stuttered since his £142m move to the Nou Camp in January 2018.
A departure this summer may prove beneficial to both club and player, handing the 26-year-old the opportunity to reignite his career whilst Barcelona can raise the funds needed for big-money pursuits of Antoine Griezmann and Neymar.
It has been speculated that Coutinho could be used as a makeweight in a deal to sign Neymar from Paris Saint-Germain, and a move to the French capital could make sense.
Former club Liverpool have also been credited with an interest in bringing Coutinho back to the Premier League.
The playmaker enjoyed a happy spell on Merseyside prior to his dream move to Barca, and a move back to Jurgen Klopp’s side could appeal to both club and player.