With the summer's transfer window closing a few weeks ago, the rumors and speculation have shifted towards January and already the mills are spinning.
The midseason window can bring about season-changing acquisitions that could make or break the campaigns for several clubs and the scouts are undoubtedly scouring the depths of Europe's best leagues for potential targets.
In the English Premier League, widely seen as one of the most physical leagues in the world, standout defenders are a commodity. Players like Vincent Kompany, Nemanja Vidic and John Terry are talents that rise above the rest when it comes to defensive presence.
Over the next three months, waves of players will seed the rumor mills. In this early edition, we look at 10 players who have reportedly garnered interest and could see a move to England's top flight.
One of England's top fullbacks in Ashley Cole is allegedly unhappy with his contract situation, says the Sun. In the final year of his contract, Chelsea is only willing to offer a one-year deal for the 31-year-old and there is little question that Cole's abilities are top-notch at his position.
The Blues have issued a revamped lineup after the days of Andres Villas-Boas and perhaps another change is coming at Stamford Bridge.
Longtime Arsenal standout Bacary Sagna has criticized the direction of the club in recent weeks, a direction that saw the Gunners unload some of their best players in Robin van Persie and Alex Song.
In a report from Mirror, Sagna says he still wants to play for Arsenal, but with further talk of the club looking to bring in other names for its defense, one can only wonder where Sagna fits in the scheme after he returns from his broken leg.
With Manchester City having signed Maicon from Inter Milan on deadline day, many wonder what to make of Micah Richards once he returns from injury. The Metro says that Richards is focused on staying with the club despite rumors of a move elsewhere, reportedly to Tottenham or Arsenal.
Real Madrid was in the thick of the rumors during the summer. Perhaps the Galacticos will have another go at the fullback in January.
Manchester City's £12 million move for Fiorentina's Matija Nastasic puts more pressure on Joleon Lescott as his future is in question at the Etihad, says Mirror. The coming months will provide a much better indicator of Lescott's place at the club.
From the looks of it, Vincent Kompany might be the lone defender who is guaranteed a spot on the roster.
Manchester City's Kolo Toure has had a falling out at the club and his selection as a first-eleven player is becoming less and less frequent.
According to the Sun, Turkish giant Galatasaray is keen to sign the £3 million-rated defender.
Still a powerful presence in the defensive third, Toure can still earn first-team time somewhere else.
Similarly to Ogbonna, Inter Milan's Andrea Ranocchia has seen his stock rise recently, picking up interest from both Manchester United and Everton, according to Football Italia.
Ranocchia and Ogbonna could be rated very similarly and both of their services could be highly coveted come January.
In a report from Football Italia, Italian side Torino's Angelo Ogbonna is generating some interest from Manchester United.
Rated at €20 million, Ogbonna is a budding prospect that earn several caps for the Italian national selection.
The one-time Tottenham fullback apparently is no longer in the future plans at Aston Villa, according to Mirror, and so Alan Hutton could be on the way out in January.
He is no burner or athletic dynamo at the position, but his ability to push forward and create chances with his distribution has to be something that will catch some attention.
A move to another EPL club may be out of the question, but the Scot is still in a good position to find first eleven selections.
In a report from Sky Sports, Anderlecht defender Cheikhou Kouyate could have made a move to Arsenal over the summer, but chose to stay with the Dutch side. As fan favorite, the supporters apparently convinced the Senegalese center back to stay with the club.
But if Arsenal, or any other European clubs, come calling in January, how long can he keep a place?
In West Ham's bid to stay atop England's best league, the Hammers will probably look to add to their roster in January.
According to Mirror, Sam Allardyce has linked up with Anthony Vanden Borre, who most recently played with Belgian side Racing Genk.
With the ability to play either right fullback or up the right wing, Vanden Borre's diversity is easily enticing.