The January transfer window brings about a hectic time for European clubs, as managers and ownership look to find the key pieces that can turn a strong campaign into a successful one.
The English Premier League, with its massive television deals and resourceful sides, is always a major player during these periods. But instead of just purchases, this month could see many of the league’s talented footballers sold to a new club or even abroad.
We highlight five Premier League players rumored to be on the move before Deadline Day.
Jermain Defoe – Sunderland
Currently finding themselves at the bottom of the table, Sunderland and manager David Moyes will undoubtedly look to make improvements in order to avoid relegation this season. Defender Joleon Lescott has joined the squad, but the Black Cats will need to ensure that striker Jermain Defoe does not leave the North East this month.
West Ham United have reportedly made several bids for the talented forward.
As Sunderland’s best-attacking player, the club will want to add talent around him. Likely to stay, the loss of Jermain Defoe would be devastating.
Gylfi Sigurdsson – Swansea City
The 2016-17 season has been a struggle for Swansea City, both in finding consistent play and positive results. The loss of Icelandic midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson would make their quest for Premier League survival even more difficult.
Everton has inquired about Sigurdsson, but the player has recently stated that he does not intend to leave Swansea anytime soon.
After the firing of managers Francesco Guidolin and Bob Bradley already this campaign, new boss Paul Clement will be pleased to keep Gylfi Sigurdsson in South Wales.
Dimitri Payet – West Ham United
More a matter of “where” and “when” this month, French international Dimitri Payet will almost assuredly be playing for a new club in 2017.
After signing a lucrative new contract last year that made him the club’s highest-paid player in history, Payet has stated that he no longer wants to be at West Ham.
Former club Marseille appears set to bring the midfielder back to his native France and the deal is likely to take place before Deadline Day. Currently seventh in Ligue 1, Marseille will be thrilled to add Dimitri Payet to their line-up moving ahead.
Alexis Sanchez – Arsenal
Arguably the club’s best player this season, Arsenal and manager Arsene Wenger certainly have no desire to see Alexis Sanchez leave North London. However, there are definitely others in Europe who feel differently about the subject.
Contract negotiations at the Emirates have stalled, and Italian giants Juventus have been keen to offer Alexis a new setting. However unlikely the transfer, the odds of Sanchez going to another Premier League side are even less.
Aiming to close the gap on league leaders Chelsea, Arsenal will be focused on keeping Alexis Sanchez in the squad this month.
Wayne Rooney – Manchester United
Wayne Rooney broke a famous record in English football last weekend, passing Sir Booby Charlton on Manchester United’s all-time scoring list with his 250th goal. A sublime free-kick displayed his incredible touch and quality.
Rooney’s playing time and production have gone down at Old Trafford, and talk of the England international moving to the Chinese Super League has come about as Deadline Day approaches. After huge transfer fees paid for the likes of Oscar and Carlos Tevez, massive sums of money are never easy to decline in the late stages of a career.
Wayne Rooney has been an important part of recent history for Manchester United but may begin a new chapter before January ends.