The World Cup is around the corner and it’s a prime opportunity for players to showcase their talents as scouts for the top clubs will be present. Here is a short list of players who may need to use this World Cup to strategically place themselves in the transfer shop window.
After two solid seasons away from Chelsea, Lukaku has seemingly resigned himself to leaving the London club. Every year Chelsea buy a new striker and ship the Belgian out on loan. Those strikers then fail to perform, whilst Lukaku increases his reputation elsewhere. It’s no surprise that the young Belgian is frustrated with his prospects at Chelsea and has been quoted as telling his parent club that he wants to leave in the summer. Atléti have targeted Lukaku as the man to replace Diego Costa, who is Chelsea bound, but if Lukaku replicates his form for Everton on the world stage, a few more suitors may take an interest.
Leaves his boyhood club for Arsenal at age 16. Quickly develops into one of the best midfielders in world football, captaining a young Arsenal side, but all Arsenal fans knew that he would one day reunite with his hometown club. Fast forward three years and Fabregas has been told to leave Barca. I genuinely feel bad for Cesc. I wanted it to work out for him, but it seems like he has been made the scapegoat for a lot of lacklustre performances in Barcelona’s midfield last season. Last season he scored 13 goals and assisted a further 16 in 55 appearances. This compares to the “untouchable” duo of Xavi and Iniesta who only scored 7 goals between them. I’m not claiming that Fabregas is a better player. I’m aware that the three players have different roles in the team, with Xavi orchestrating the tempo of the game, and Iniesta receiving the ball, running at players and making space for other attackers to run into. I’m suggesting that Cesc has been treated rather unfairly by the Catalan giants. His stats show that he is a productive member of the team, and many midfielders in the top leagues would be ecstatic with a goal return of 13. Reports claim that Rakitic is close to a move but Barcelona may live to regret letting Cesc go. Chelsea look like the favourites to snap him up but Jose Mourinho has questioned whether this deal will take place until after the World Cup. A standout performance in this tournament may turn a few more heads in Europe as no one should be forced into a move to Chelsea.
Another top player linked with a move away from his current club. Remy is still on QPR’s books and although they have been promoted to the Premier League, the Frenchman has courted the Premier League big guns of Liverpool and Arsenal. He is thought to have a £10million release clause in his contract and a good showing at the World Cup may force the hand of the top teams into forking out for the prolific striker.
A few seasons ago, the Little Pea was described as the signing of the 21st century by his manager Alex Ferguson. At £8million and having scored several important goals this claim wasn’t that farfetched. Fast-forward to last season where Chicharito found his starting opportunities reduced and he was resigned as the fourth-choice striker behind Van Persie, Rooney and even Danny Welbeck. If he is in form for Mexico it would be no surprise if a top European team enquired about his availability.
Another Barca player who may be forced out of the club as a result of the much needed restructuring of the club. Sanchez signed for Barcelona in 2011 for 26 million Euros, and scored 21 goals in all competitions last season but he has been deemed surplus to requirements and top Premier League teams are said to be interested in the Chilean. I’m backing Chile as potential dark horses of this competition and their influential wide-man will be vital to any type of success.
Ángel Di Maria:
He looked like he was on his way out of Real Madrid last season, but this season he has consistently performed at a high level, and has arguably been Los Blancos most important player. His mazy run in the Champions League final to set up Bale’s winner showed his ability, but he still feels undervalued by his club. He was recently upset about being linked with a move away from Spain to Tottenham, but if Di María is on-form at the World Cup, the number of clubs linked with acquiring his services will no doubt increase, and he may end up moving to a team where his talent is recognised.
The Southampton exodus looks likely to continue with the expected departures of Adam Lallana and Luke Shaw. The teenage left back’s performances in the Premier League over the past two seasons have caught the attention of some of the top teams in the country, and his inclusion in England’s World Cup squad is testament to his progress. Linked with Man United, Chelsea and Liverpool, the teenager is an exciting prospect who looks to have a bright future ahead of him. In my opinion, I feel like this World Cup has come too soon for him and it remains to be seen what kind of involvement he will have this summer. Having said that, the experience of being part of the team at a major international competition is priceless and the big clubs will continue to circulate the youngster.