Bale back to the Premier League, Cavani heading to Spain? The biggest deals which could still happen before the transfer deadline
European football’s winter transfer window slams shut on January 31 as teams across the continent scramble to bring in reinforcements and offload unwanted talent ahead of the second half of the season.
RT Sport will be bringing you all the news you need from locations across Europe on deadline day itself, but before that we take a look at the biggest deals that could still happen as the clock ticks down.
Paris Saint-Germain’s big Uruguayan forward has been linked with a move to a host of English Premier League clubs during the January window but is now edging closer to a switch to Atletico Madrid, according to reports in Spain.
PSG have already rejected a €15 million ($16.5 million) bid for the 32-year-old, although Atleti have reportedly returned with an improved €18 million offer plus variables.
The Uruguayan has six months left on his contract at PSG but has fallen down the pecking order behind Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and new arrival Mauro Icardi.
Premier League sides Manchester United, Chelsea and Tottenham are also reported to have shown interest in bringing in the Uruguayan, while there was also speculation of a late move from David Beckham’s new MLS franchise, Inter Miami, to lure the big forward to the States.
However, the forward himself is said to be set on a move to La Liga with Diego Simeone’s Atleti the clear frontrunners to secure his signing.
Cavani has scored five goals in 14 appearances across all competitions for PSG this season, and would leave the French giants as their all-time top-scorer with 198 goals in 293 games.
One of the most complex potential moves of the window centers on French World Cup winner Olivier Giroud and his future at Chelsea.
Giroud has featured just seven times for Chelsea this season and is said to be desperate to force a move from Stamford Bridge as he seeks regular game time in the run-up to Euro 2020.
The 33-year-old, whose contract is up this summer, has been linked with a switch to Chelsea’s London rivals Tottenham, who badly need reinforcements upfront after injury ruled out lead man Harry Kane until at least April.
Newcastle are also potential suitors for Giroud, although neither they nor Spurs are believed to have submitted formal offers.
Outside of the Premier League, a move to Inter Milan to play under former Blues boss Antonio Conte appeared most likely, although the Italians are understood to have cooled on the idea having brought in Christian Eriksen, Ashley Young and Victor Moses this month.
It’s also unclear where Giroud would fit into Inter’s plans as they battle it out with Juve for the Serie A title, with their attack already boasting Romelu Lukaku and highly-rated Argentine Lautaro Martínez.
In addition, any Giroud move could hinge on whether Chelsea can bring in reported target Dries Mertens from Napoli...
Chelsea are chasing Belgian star Mertens as Frank Lampard desperately bids to add firepower to his forward line.
Napoli and Chelsea were reported to be in talks on Thursday over the 32-year-old, who can play in any position across the front line.
Mertens, whose contract with Napoli is up this summer, would set the London club back at least £5 million ($6.54 million), but despite his age that could be seen as good value given his return of 118 goals and 71 assists in just over 300 games for Napoli – including nine strikes in 22 appearances this season.
Should Mertens make the switch, that would likely pave the way for Chelsea to green-light a move away from the Bridge for Olivier Giroud, whom Lampard has used sparingly this campaign.
More Chelsea transfer talk centers on midfielder Willian after Barcelona are reportedly preparing to swoop for the Brazilian winger, who is out of contract at the end of the season.
Willian, 31, has been at the Bridge since 2013 and was a stalwart for much of the success in those years, including the Premier League triumphs in 2015 and 2017.
He has made 30 appearances so far this campaign, signaling his continued importance for Lampard as a more experienced presence in a young team.
But with Barcelona reportedly prepared to offer £20 million for the winger, that could test Chelsea’s resolve as they choose to cash in now rather than see the player move on for free in the summer.Also on rt.com No deal: Everton reject €100m bid from Barcelona for Brazilian hitman Richarlison
Having had a reported €100 million offered for Brazilian youngster Richarlison rejected by Everton, Barcelona certainly appear keen to splash the cash this window - but whether or not that includes Willian remains to be seen.
The Welshman was the target of fervent transfer speculation throughout the summer before remaining at Real Madrid, but the winter window has reignited talk over a potential move for the unloved winger from the Bernabeu.
Former club Tottenham are reported to have held talks with Real about bringing Bale back to London, although the player’s gargantuan £600,000-per-week wages would likely be the biggest barrier to a potential move.
Spurs boss Jose Mourinho is keen to bring in attacking talent with Harry Kane sidelined until at least April, but has added Netherlands forward Steven Bergwijn in a £27 million deal from PSV Eindhoven.
A Bale switch back to the North London club seems very much an outside bet.
The last of our potential big movers is German international Emre Can, who could return to his homeland after Borussia Dortmund agreed a £22 million ($28 million) deal with Juventus for the midfield man, according to reports.
Can has cut a frustrated figure at Juve, being used sparingly by new boss Maurizio Sarri and not even being included in the Turin giants’ Champions League squad.
The former Bayern Munich, Leverkusen and Liverpool man is still only 26, and could join Dortmund initially on loan with an obligation to buy at the end of the season.
Be sure to follow RT Sport on deadline day, Friday January 31, as our reporters in London, Milan and Moscow bring you all the latest on the big deals going through across Europe.