Five midfielders that could still transfer this summer

Martin Macdonald
Camavinga wants PSG move – but Real Madrid and Arsenal should keep hope

All of the major leagues in Europe have kicked off for the 2021/22 campaign, but there is still likely to be plenty of transfer activity over the next week before the window ends on 31 August.

While most clubs on the continent are struggling financially as the pandemic continues, clubs from the Premier League and Paris Saint-Germain, in particular, continue to splash the cash.

Manchester City spent a British record fee of £100 million on Jack Grealish, Manchester United signed Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane, while Romelu Lukaku returned to Chelsea from Inter.

PSG, meanwhile, have only gone and signed Lionel Messi on a free transfer from Barcelona, albeit on massive wages.

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In terms of midfielders, Martin Odegaard has joined Arsenal, Rodrigo De Paul has left Udinese for Atletico Madrid, while Boubakary Soumare is now a Leicester player.

There are plenty of other midfielders who could move on within the next six days...

Eduardo Camavinga

Eduardo Camavinga has already played 83 times for Rennes, despite not turning 19 until October, and in that time he's displayed just how talented he is.

He experienced a slight drop-off last year, but was still a defensive powerhouse, making 4.6 tackles and interceptions per 90, while also being in the 95th percentile for dribbles per 90 of central midfielders in Europe's top five leagues.

Camavinga would be perfect for Liverpool or Man Utd, and while it's becoming repetitive - those two teams need reinforcements - Camavinga is the ideal candidate.

He will likely not sign a new contract with Rennes, which means he is available for transfer.

Saul Niguez

Saul Niguez has been one of Atletico Madrid's best performers in recent years, but he now seems set to leave the club.

The emergence of Marcos Llorente ensured Saul's league minutes were reduced last season, and with the impressive Rodrigo De Paul arriving from Udinese, he's reportedly now on the 'for sale' list.

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Atletico are hoping to defend their La Liga crown this year, but they are willing to do this without Saul. The midfielder has been linked with both Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester United recently, while there was briefly a rumour suggesting he'd be involved in a player-plus-cash deal for Antoine Griezmann with Barcelona.

The Premier League, however, looks like his most probable destination, and with both Liverpool and Man Utd, in particular, needing midfield reinforcements, one of them will surely drum up the reported €40 million that is needed to secure Saul.

Miralem Pjanic

Last summer, Barcelona and Juventus pulled off a controversial transfer swap deal involving Miralem Pjanic and Arthur Melo.

Huge money was exchanged for both, and the Bosnian headed to Camp Nou.

Unfortunately for him, the deal was agreed before Ronald Koeman took charge, and it soon became clear the Dutchman was not a fan.

Pjanic has never looked comfortable in a Barcelona shirt, and thanks to the emergence of Pedri he has found himself on the periphery of things.

A return to Juventus is the most likely scenario, but they have signed Manuel Locatelli so his future remains unclear.

Houssem Aouar

Houssem Aouar is just one of many promising young footballers that the Lyon academy has produced in recent years.

The Rhone club have an unerring ability to churn out technically accomplished attacking players on a seemingly annual basis, and having done his time in Ligue 1, it is expected that Aouar will soon be on his way.

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Indeed, it had been predicted that Aouar might leave Lyon in the summer. Arsenal were interested, but the club’s price was apparently too extravagant for the Gunners. He is six months closer to the end of his contract, which is up in 2022.

Tottenham are looking at him as a potential replacement for Tanguy Ndombele.

Tanguy Ndombele

Tanguy Ndombele has made his intentions clear and wants to leave Tottenham in this current window. A move that has apparently forced Nuno Espirito Santo to drop him from his squad.

The Frenchman remains Spurs' record transfer, having arrived from Lyon from €62 million in the summer of 2019.

He was unable to hold down a regular place in the team under Mauricio Pochettino and then Jose Mourinho, and it appears he doesn't want to be part of Nuno's plans.

Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern Munich are monitoring the situation very carefully.