The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the world of football and while the summer transfer window will normally open across Europe (much like the January window), summer budgets clubs are expected to be hit hard again.
Clubs spent nearly 1.5 billion euros ($ 1.9 billion) less in the summer of 2020 than during the same period in 2019, according to FIFA, while Deloitte reported a drop 50% active in January 2021. However, there will still be plenty of loans, exchanges, free transfers, and even standing agreements to watch out for.
Here are the ratings of all the major summer offers. The most recent articles are at the top; each day is in the order of the highest transfer fees. If you don’t see a note for a completed move, come back later. All charges are indicated unless confirmed with *.
With a release clause inserted into his contract, there was little that Leipzig could do to prevent their star defender from leaving. Upamecano is only 22 years old but has become one of the best young players in Europe after joining FC Salzburg in 2017 for around 10 million euros. The club made their peace by letting him go and will move on.
Bayern edged out the rest of Europe’s top clubs to clinch the Frenchman and should be very happy. He is still in development but should be a good addition to their multi-talented squad as he was one of the most coveted players in this transfer window.
Another Leipzig star with a workable release clause inserted into his contract. Like Upamecano, Konate wasn’t going to stay long at the club before moving on to one of the best teams in Europe. Leipzig did well to get the big transfer fees and can rebuild themselves with it.
One of the best young defenders in Europe, Upamecano has made headlines, but Konate also deserves a big blow. Liverpool have struggled this season but should be prepared for the future if the 21-year-old can hit the ground in England and remain injury-free.
Schalke’s relegation after a dismal season ensured that the move would still be on the agenda. His loan to Juventus in August 2020 came as a surprise, and the German club might regret not having chosen him to help fight the decline. Although with the payments to Schalke spread over three years, they secured their financial future and could also earn an additional 6.5 million euros in top-ups.
Juve managed to make the most of the American midfielder and he impressed enough to land a contract until June 2025. Manager Andrea Pirlo says he is now “more professional than when he arrived” and that his levels of fitness and concentration improved. . He will only get stronger in one of the best clubs in Europe.
“There’s a big difference [between Man City boss Pep Guardiola and Leipzig’s Julian Nagelsmann]: One gave me confidence and played me, and the other didn’t. [Guardiola] killed me. Confidence is everything to me. That quote roughly sums up Angelin’s time at City, the former Spain Under-21 international having signed in 2013 but spending most of his time on loan. He left for PSV in 2018 and eventually started showing off his skills but The City used his buyout clause to bring him back to the Etihad, where he was on loan again.
Fortunately, the 24-year-old has had two impressive loan spells at Leipzig which were enough to persuade them to sign him for good. City got a decent fee, while Leipzig got a player who has proven to be a key part of their squad. We just hope that no buyout clause is included this time around.
After failing to succeed at Marseille’s youth academy, two impressive seasons in Strasbourg’s first team as a youngster have shown that Simakan is ready to take it to the next level. He is still raw and developing but his defensive style is similar to that of Lilian Thuram and one cannot help but think that Strasbourg could have held up a bit longer.
Let a player go for 42.5 million euros and use the money to sign his replacement for 15 million euros; Leipzig controls transfers. The club beat competition from AC Milan to land the much-loved Simakan, who has a lot of potential and is still only 21 years old. He is a born organizer who should help fill the void in Upamecano.
After winning Ligue 1 this season, the exodus from Lille began with their star goalkeeper as Maignan moved to Italy. After building up a good reputation in France, the 6-foot-3 cork came cheap as its contract was due to expire in 2022. Lille will have a hard time replacing it with a similar quality.
Milan reacted quickly when it became clear that Gianluigi Donnarumma was not going to sign any new terms. The 22-year-old Italy international will go on a free transfer and Maignan is his replacement. He won’t win fans over like Donnarumma did when he made his debut at the age of 15, but Maignan is a solid player who can help Milan cope with the loss of their biggest young star.
Julien Laurens suggests USMNT prospect Bryan Reynolds will develop better at Rome than at Juventus.
Reynolds was loaned to Rome in January, but has only played a handful of times since. He’s still only 19 years old, so the $ 6.75million requirement to sign him (plus $ 5million in top-ups) is a lot of money and Dallas can be happy with the way they’ve got it. ‘have led to progress in his career. We will miss him, but it’s better for the player that he moves on.
Roma have beaten Juventus against the US right-back and the club will give them a clearer path to the first team. He has a lot to learn and is not the finished article yet, but he has a lot of potential and Roma is hoping he will have an impact similar to that of American star McKennie in Turin.
A nimble little Argentina striker, Sarmiento has had the unwelcome distraction of comparisons to the untouchable Lionel Messi to deal with in his young career to date. He made his Estudiantes debut at the age of 16 in 2019 and hasn’t looked back since, impressing with his direct dribbling and running style. The club could have kept him a little longer to see how he develops, but chose to take the money earlier.
It’s a bit of a bet for City and you can see Sarmiento sent on loan before he makes an appearance in City’s first team. But the Premier League champions haven’t spent much to sign the 18-year-old, so they could reap the rewards if he turns out to be half as good as Messi.
Bayern will be furious if they failed to persuade one of their best defenders to sign a new contract, but Alaba, 28, clearly had a new challenge in mind. Madrid have a world-class player who can fill a number of different positions. They pay him a lot in wages, but the lack of transfer fees is worth it. If Sergio Ramos or Raphael Varane leave, the club will have a natural replacement.
Any player who has gone through Ajax’s extraordinary youth academy is generally pursuing a decent career. Brobbey’s record for goals at youth level saw him score 90 goals in 123 games during his time at the club, but he was tired of the lack of chances in the first team and opted to see his contract before moving on. take on a new challenge. in Germany. Leipzig may have endowed itself with a real star if it can continue this development. They were looking for a replacement for Timo Werner (after letting Chelsea sign him for € 53million last summer) and Brobbey’s versatility gives him an added dimension up front. At 19, the striker has everything he needs to succeed.
The former England U-21 international left-back has chosen to become the latest young star to move to the Bundesliga upon seeing his contract in the Reading Championship. At 23, he has a lot of room for improvement but it’s a bit of a gamble for Bayern. Obviously, the German club have been impressed with his technical skills and his ability to attack as a full-back, but he will have to perform exceptionally well to oust Alphonso Davies from the squad.
It takes a lot of courage to change clubs at 17, but Coulibaly follows Dan-Axel Zagadou in joining Borussia Dortmund from PSG and is a left-handed center-back. PSG could not offer him any guarantees in the first team. After suffering an ACL injury in training in mid-February, he opted to leave when his contract ended. Coulibaly has been aided in his development by compatriot French Presnel Kimpembe and Dortmund can certainly give him the chances he needs, if he can show he is up to the challenge. “I am grateful to have spent time at PSG, but there is the right step for me,” he said. “I had other offers from another club, but I knew right away that Dortmund were the right choice for me. “
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