The summer transfer window that saw a total of £630 million spent in the Premier League has only just closed, but the clubs are already planning who they intend to buy when the window reopens again in January.
In this article, I take a look at the four biggest names in the Premier League most likely to be on the move in January.
Don’t be fooled by the current rapprochement between Luis Suarez and Liverpool.
It remains a marriage of convenience devoid of any real love and likely to end in divorce possibly as early as the January transfer window.
No matter how abhorrent Suarez may be for his biting and being found guilty of racial abuse, he deserves to be acknowledged as one of the world’s best strikers.
Since arriving at Anfield in 2011, Suarez has scored 51 goals in 96 games for Liverpool.
A striker of this calibre should be playing in the Champions League, and because of Liverpool’s failure to qualify for the competition yet again this season, he publicly told the club he wanted to leave as recently as last month, as reported by the BBC.
Now Liverpool were never going to sell Suarez to Arsenal, who bid £40 million for him in the summer, according to Declan Warrington of the Daily Mail. If the Uruguayan continues to agitate for a move, though, he could be sold to Real Madrid in the January window, as suggested by the Mirror's David Anderson.
It was to Manchester United’s great frustration that their late attempt to sign the Spanish playmaker on the final day of the transfer window collapsed.
Having failed to sign fellow Spaniards Thiago Alcantara and Cesc Fabregas, it appeared as though the Athletic Bilbao man was on his way to Old Trafford. However, as reported in The Guardian by Daniel Taylor, amid a welter of accusations and blame the Red Devils ultimately failed to get him.
Herrera remains in Spain for now, but it is entirely feasible that United, stung by the criticism of their transfer dealings this summer, will be back when the transfer window reopens in January.
While United did manage to sign another midfielder in Marouane Fellaini from Everton, Herrera is a different style of midfielder, one who is able to unlock defences. That type of midfielder still appears to be an urgent requirement for United.
Does anyone seriously expect Christian Benteke to fulfil the new four-year contract he signed at Aston Villa this summer?
The Belgian striker is too good to remain in the lower reaches of the Premier League. He should be playing in the Champions League.
Last season Benteke scored 23 goals in all competitions and was one of the main reasons Villa narrowly avoided relegation.
As reported by the BBC, Benteke handed in a transfer request as recently as July only to sign his new contract a couple of weeks later after gaining a pay rise.
According to James Dickenson of the Express, Benteke had openly speculated about who he would like to join before he signed the contract and said: "If the chance comes up for me to join a club like Arsenal, I am convinced we can reach a compromise where everybody comes out a winner.”
Arsenal still need to augment their forward line and could well make Benteke’s wish come true by offering him a new route out of Villa Park in January.
Manchester United attempted to sign Leighton Baines twice during the summer of 2013.
At the start of the summer, according to the BBC, United bid £12 million for him alone, but the bid was rejected. The Red Devils then included him in a joint bid of £28 million for him and Marouane Fellaini, which was also turned down.
Of course, Fellaini was eventually lured to Old Trafford, but Baines remained at Goodison Park.
It is likely David Moyes will be back again for Baines in January as United need a left-back to provide the team with a greater attacking threat down that side of the field.
And having spent another four months away from both the Champions League and the summit of the Premier League Baines may well be more forceful in asking for a move to Old Trafford.