Ronaldo, Joao Felix and others who could be on the move in January

    Those who celebrate this time of year will barely have time to toss out the wrapping paper and put their weird jumpers back in the closet.

    Whether they got what they wanted or not, football fans have a different passion as January approaches as the transfer season kicks off for another month.

    Some big names are already linked with possible moves, the most obvious of which is free agent Cristiano Ronaldo following his sack from Manchester United.

    Deals have already been closed for January 1st and Cody Gakpo has been confirmed to be heading to Liverpool from PSV Eindhoven.

    Before the chaos of the January transfer window begins, Stats Perform looked at some of the players who could be in the midst of a tug-of-war and complete the first month of 2023 at a new club.

    Cristiano Ronaldo

    It seemed strange to Ronaldo, but whether it was his intention or not, the Portuguese star effectively ended his relationship with Manchester United when he decided to publicly denounce club figures, including manager Erik ten Hag, through an interview with Piers Morgan. before the World Cup.

    This led to a strange situation where his great rival Lionel Messi won the World Cup while Ronaldo didn’t even have a club.

    Theoretically, there should be many willing to offer him a deal, even if he turns 38 in just over a month. Ronaldo scored 24 goals in 38 games for United last season and left the club with only four former United players having a better overall goals-per-game ratio in the Premier League than his 0.44 (Ruud van Nistelrooy 0, 63, Andy Cole – 0.48, Wayne). Rooney – 0.47, and Eric Cantona – 0.45).

    However, with his wage demands and the likely reputational damage caused by the nature of his abrupt departure from Old Trafford, it doesn’t look like Europe’s biggest clubs are eager to make the move despite the likes of Bayern Munich, Chelsea and possibly a former club. Real Madrid seem to be looking for a striker.

    It therefore seems likely that Saudi team Al Nasr can attack him unhindered with their stated mega money offer, though Ronaldo doesn’t need to rush into any decision as his free agent status means he could complete the transfer. Anytime.

    Joao Felix

    Another Portuguese striker who looks set to play somewhere else by February, Joao Felix, is at the other end of his career and needs to find a spot to fulfill his early promise.

    João Félix joined Atlético Madrid from Benfica for €127m in 2019 at the age of 19 after scoring 22 goals in 26 Primeira Liga matches (15 goals, seven assists), but despite brief outbursts, so and did not come close to life. to that gigantic fee in Spain.

    The 23-year-old has 33 goals and 16 assists in 129 appearances for Atlético Madrid but has reportedly fallen out with manager Diego Simeone and is now being offered at many clubs in England.

    Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea, Newcastle United and Aston Villa are allegedly among those approached by Jorge Mendez’s agent and all may have room in their squad for another striker before the second half of the season.

    Wherever he ends up, Joao Felix will hope he can finally make the promise many saw in him as a teenager and find a home to prosper for a long time to come.

    Enzo Fernandez

    In theory, most of Europe’s elite clubs should be kicking themselves right now.

    Fernández joined Benfica from River Plate just at the beginning of this season for a reported fee of €12m, where he shone both domestically and in the Champions League.

    This earned the midfielder a place in Lionel Scaloni’s Argentina squad for the World Cup, and despite starting the tournament on the bench, he worked his way there to become a key part of the team that won the trophy in Qatar, earning himself the title of best young player. Player reward in progress.

    No wonder the sharks are circling right now and Fernandez, who led all players in touchdowns (118), passes (77) and tackles (10) in the World Cup final, could leave Lisbon quickly.

    Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United and Newcastle are all showing interest, although Benfica have agreed to do business midway through the season as they top the Primeira Liga- league and will play in the 1/8 finals of the Champions League. against Brugge, you might think that they would charge a hefty fee, approaching or exceeding nine figures, just to answer the phone.

    Mikhail Mudrik

    As with Fernandez, Mudrik is a player whose profile has grown rapidly in a short amount of time.

    The 21-year-old winger was courted by the likes of Brentford and Everton ahead of this season, but his performances, particularly in the Champions League, have caught the attention of those higher up the food chain.

    Mudryk scored three goals in six games in the Champions League group stage, as well as seven goals and six assists in 12 Ukrainian Premier League games before the mid-season break.

    Arsenal seem to be the most interested party ahead of January and have reportedly already applied, but Shakhtar Donetsk’s alleged demands could turn this into a saga.

    It is speculated that Shakhtar want up to €100m (£85m) and could try to take advantage of Arsenal’s desperation as the Gunners attempt to retain their Premier League title after star striker Gabriel Jesus was ruled out for up to three months due to injury.

    Manchester United and any striker

    Transfer sagas involve not only players, but also clubs, and few do it more often and spectacularly than the Red Devils.

    It looks like the ‘they-won’t-they’ drama has already begun in January, as United were seemingly succumbed to Gakpo by rivals Liverpool, and alternate names are already popping up in a story that could potentially drag on for an entire month.

    Boss Ten Hag has already said that there is a hole in the team in Ronaldo’s form and he is looking for reinforcements, stressing that “it has to be right.”

    In addition to Felix, United have been linked with the signings of Gonzalo Ramos, Dusan Vlahovic and even former Old Trafford player Memphis Depay.

    With reports that Ten Hag could be constrained by the loan market due to their heavy spending in the previous window and the Glazers’ continued attempts to sell the club, it may be that United will be forced to take a step similar to the one that led to the addition of Odion Ighalo. temporarily in January 2020

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