In demand: 20 players who will define the January transfer window

With the January transfer window officially open, we take a look at 20 high-profile players who could be on the move.

Premier League

Aaron Ramsey | Arsenal | Age: 28 | Central midfielder

David Price / Arsenal FC / Getty

Slated to be a free agent this summer after Arsenal withdrew their contract offer, the Welsh midfielder has his pick of the litter. European heavyweights Juventus, Bayern Munich, Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, and Inter have all come calling, with the Italian champions reportedly in pole position to secure the 28-year-old's signature. With his deal at the Emirates on the verge of expiring, Ramsey's free to negotiate with those clubs in January.

Most likely destination: Juventus

Mesut Ozil | Arsenal | Age: 30 | Attacking midfielder

The smooth German midfielder remains one of the best pure creators in the game, but it's no secret that new Arsenal boss Unai Emery isn't his biggest fan. Ozil's consistently been left on the bench this season, with Emery questioning his ability to cope with "physicality and intensity." However, the 30-year-old's reported wages of £350,000 per week - which make him the highest earner at the club - are a massive obstacle to any potential move.

Most likely destination: Remains at Arsenal

Toby Alderweireld | Tottenham | Age: 29 | Central defender

Julian Finney / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The decision to activate a one-year extension in Alderweireld's contract was a no-brainer for Tottenham, as the move ensured the Belgian center-back won't leave on a free transfer. However, doing so reportedly triggered an additional clause that allows him to depart for just £25 million in the summer. Jose Mourinho tried desperately to pry Alderweireld from Spurs last year, and even without the Portuguese manager at the helm, Manchester United are likely to make another push.

Most likely destination: Manchester United

Callum Hudson-Odoi | Chelsea | Age: 18 | Winger

Chelsea reportedly rejected an offer from Bayern Munich of more than £20 million for the teenage attacker, with the Blues said to value him at closer to £40 million. Meanwhile, manager Maurizio Sarri has spoken highly of the skillful London native, saying Hudson-Odoi "has the potential to become a very, very important player, not only for English football but for European football." High praise, indeed. But with Bayern desperately in need of rejuvenation - especially amongst their contingent of wide forwards - how long can Sarri and Co. fend off the Bavarian side's interest?

Most likely destination: Bayern Munich

Marouane Fellaini | Manchester United | Age: 31 | Central midfielder

Ross Kinnaird / Getty Images Sport / Getty

If Paul Pogba was the primary benefactor of Mourinho's sacking, then fellow midfielder Marouane Fellaini was easily the biggest loser. The Belgian, a favorite of the unimaginative manager, has played just three minutes since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer took over and looks like a prime candidate to be sent packing should a suitable offer arrive. Fellaini's combative style simply doesn't jive with the Norwegian tactician's desire to bring attractive football back to Old Trafford.

Most likely destination: Fenerbahce

Brahim Diaz | Manchester City | Age: 19 | Attacking midfielder

Manchester City look destined to see another rising star slip away. While growing increasingly frustrated over his lack of appearances - he's made a mere three this season, all in the League Cup - 19-year-old Brahim Diaz is reportedly on the verge of a £15-million move to Real Madrid. Is this Jadon Sancho 2.0? Given how the English winger has blossomed at Borussia Dortmund since leaving the Etihad, Madrid will certainly be hoping so.

Most likely destination: Real Madrid

Alvaro Morata | Chelsea | Age: 26 | Striker

Clive Rose / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The emergence of Eden Hazard as a legitimate option playing through the center of Chelsea's attack has pushed Morata to the bench. After being a consistent contributor at Real Madrid - albeit largely as a substitute - the Spaniard hasn't been able to replicate that scoring form in the Premier League despite consistently getting in good positions. Morata's underlying shooting numbers suggest patience is needed, but much like Chelsea supporters, it seems the front office is fed up with his lack of goals.

Most likely destination: AC Milan

Gary Cahill | Chelsea | Age: 33 | Central defender

Gary Cahill's played just 21 minutes in the Premier League this season, and he clearly has no future at Chelsea with his contract set to expire this summer. Arsenal reportedly looked at bringing the veteran aboard to help solidify their leaky backline, but London peers Fulham now appear to be the front-runners. Cahill's past his best, but the Cottagers have conceded the most goals in the league this season and must bring in someone - anyone - to help stop the bleeding.

Most likely destination: Fulham

La Liga

Isco | Real Madrid | Age: 26 | Attacking midfielder

TF-Images / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Isco's seen his role diminish rapidly at Real Madrid, as the silky Spanish playmaker hasn't started a league match since Santiago Solari replaced Julen Lopetegui at the Bernabeu. He was also roundly booed by the notoriously fickle Madrid fans during the club's humiliating home loss to CSKA Moscow in the Champions League, and as such, rumors began to swirl over the deft dribbler's future. However, Madrid would be mad to let Isco - often the driving force for his national team - move elsewhere.

Most likely destination: Manchester City

Lucas Hernandez | Atletico Madrid | Age: 22 | Left-back

Atletico Madrid have previously convinced their marquee players to shun the opulent advances of other clubs - see: Griezmann, Antoine - and they'll need to make a similarly convincing argument to keep hold of Hernandez. The French left-back, an essential component of last summer's World Cup-winning side, is reportedly attracting attention in Germany, with Bayern Munich ready to trigger his €80-million release clause. Such a move would make Hernandez the most expensive defender on the planet.

Most likely destination: Bayern Munich

Serie A

Gonzalo Higuain | AC Milan | Age: 31 | Striker

Soccrates Images / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Who says matters of the heart have no place in the transfer market? Gonzalo Higuain's been consistently linked with a switch to Stamford Bridge for one reason and one reason alone: the presence of Maurizio Sarri, who forged a father-son-like bond with the Argentine striker during their days at Napoli. Higuain doesn't fit the mold of a typical Chelsea transfer target - as a policy, the club doesn't offer multi-year deals to players over the age of 30 - but with Olivier Giroud injured and the aforementioned Morata completely bereft of confidence, could Sarri convince the brass to make an exception?

Most likely destination: Chelsea


Christian Pulisic | Borussia Dortmund | Age: 20 | Forward

This was the first domino to fall. The rising American star completed a €64-million move to Chelsea on Wednesday, although he'll remain with Dortmund for the rest of this season. The agreement could set a chain reaction of transfers into motion: Monchengladbach attacker Thorgan Hazard is reportedly a target for Dortmund to replace Pulisic, while there might be a knock-on effect at Stamford Bridge for the likes of Hudson-Odoi, Willian, and Pedro.

Benjamin Pavard | VfB Stuttgart | Age: 22 | Defender

Catherine Ivill / Getty Images Sport / Getty

While they work on solidifying their left-back situation, Bayern Munich are also casting an eye toward the other side of the pitch. The Bundesliga giants are chasing versatile defender Benjamin Pavard, another prominent member of Didier Deschamps' World Cup champions. The 22-year-old can play at right-back - as he did in Russia with Les Bleus - or in central defense, where he often lines up for VfB Stuttgart. The fax machine at the Allianz Arena is going to get a workout in January.

Most likely destination: Bayern Munich

Timo Werner | RB Leipzig | Age: 22 | Forward

The trail's gone somewhat cold on Timo Werner - an underwhelming World Cup campaign can do that to you - but the 22-year-old German remains one of the most intriguing young strikers in the world. He's bounced back nicely after struggling in Russia, with 11 goals in just 17 Bundesliga appearances so far this season, and that renewed scoring touch will surely have the likes of Bayern (who else?) sniffing around. Werner will earn a high-profile move at some point, but he may have to wait until July.

Most likely destination: Bayern Munich

Ligue 1

Tanguy Ndombele | Lyon | Age: 22 | Central midfielder

Soccrates Images / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Lyon's conveyor belt continues to produce the goods. The latest of Les Gones' prodigiously talented youngsters to open eyes across Europe is midfield dynamo Tanguy Ndombele, who, along with Houssem Aouar, impressed against suitors Manchester City in the Champions League. Ndombele's agent said last month that Lyon wouldn't let their box-to-box stud leave in January for anything less than €80 million. That's a small fortune for most clubs, but only pocket change for a City side in need of midfield reinforcements.

Most likely destination: Manchester City

Nicolas Pepe | Lille | Age: 23 | Winger

When you're putting up Kylian Mbappe-type numbers, people are going to take notice. That's precisely what's happened with Lille's Nicolas Pepe; only Mbappe has more goals in Ligue 1 this season than the Ivorian winger, who arrived at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy from Angers for just €9 million. However, with Lille very much in the hunt for a Champions League berth - they're second in the table - interested parties like Arsenal will need to fork out serious cash to secure Pepe's signature in January. A summer deal seems more probable.

Most likely destination: Arsenal

Adrien Rabiot | Paris Saint-Germain | Age: 23 | Central midfielder

VI-Images / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The graceful ball-carrier is guaranteed to leave the French capital after his very public quarrel with PSG's brass; sporting director Antero Henrique, fuming at the Frenchman's decision to not sign a new contract, said Rabiot will remain glued to the bench until he goes elsewhere. Meanwhile, Barcelona denied reaching an agreement with the curly-haired midfielder - mainly to eschew accusations of tampering - but it seems like a certainty he'll be at the Camp Nou in the very near future.

Most likely destination: Barcelona

Major League Soccer

Miguel Almiron | Atlanta United | Age: 24 | Attacking midfielder

A record-breaking deal is on the horizon in Major League Soccer. Miguel Almiron, a dominant force since joining Atlanta United, has been linked with a handful of European sides since helping the Five Stripes romp to the MLS Cup title last month. The Paraguayan, who blends long, elegant strides with dynamic dribbling ability, will almost certainly become the most expensive sale in the history of North America's top flight. And while Newcastle have been most consistently named as Almiron's potential destination, the likes of West Ham, Tottenham, and Arsenal are in the conversation. Atlanta president Darren Eales won't let the 24-year-old leave on the cheap.

Most likely destination: Newcastle


Frenkie de Jong | Ajax | Age: 21 | Central midfielder

Soccrates Images / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The vultures are circling. Blossoming Dutch superstar Frenkie de Jong is all the rage in the transfer market right now, and for good reason - his versatility, composure, technical excellence, and, crucially, his age have the world's top clubs salivating. Manchester City, Barcelona, and Paris Saint-Germain are in direct competition for the 21-year-old, with a final decision expected in the coming weeks, according to De Jong's agent. Whoever splashes the roughly £60 million that the midfielder's expected to cost will feel like they won the lottery.

Most likely destination: Manchester City

Matthijs de Ligt | Ajax | Age: 19 | Central defender

A Battle Royale is about to ensue. Much like his aforementioned teammate and compatriot, Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt is going to inspire a transfer skirmish of epic proportions. The Dutchman, still only 19, is a rare talent who's considered the game's next world-class central defender. He's going to cost a small fortune, but all of Europe's marquee clubs are desperate to make the recipient of the 2018 Golden Boy award the cornerstone of their backline.

Most likely destination: Barcelona

In demand: 20 players who will define the January transfer window
  Got something to say? Leave a comment below!
Daily Newsletter
Get the latest trending sports news daily in your inbox