Spurs Target Miralem Pjanic And 10 More To Sign In January
Over £500 million was spent by Premier League clubs during this summer, an incredible amount by anyone's standards. Despite this though, if you believe what you read in the papers it could have been much more, as several proposed big name signings didn't quite materialise. Here are 11 of the most high profile players who - for whatever reason - decided to stick it out at their current clubs:
Angel Di Maria
Targeted By: Arsenal, Man City How Good is He? Not a stand out star in a very strong Madrid team, but a willing worker and a favourite of Mourinho’s. Why didn’t it happen? It’s unclear whether anyone ever put in a bid for Di Maria, though it’s possible he was Arsene Wenger’s second choice had the club not managed to land Ozil. Long Term Prospects: Now that Ozil and Kaka have left, the hard working Di Maria will no doubt remain a mainstay in the Real team, even if he remains Bale and Ronaldo in the pecking order. -- Miralem PjanicTargeted By: Spurs How Good is He? Established himself in the Roma first team from a very young age. A promising playmaker but still unclear if he’s got the class to make the step up to a top team. Why didn’t it happen? Roma clearly wanted a premium for Pjanic, given that selling him would have meant losing both of their stars in one transfer window. It’s perhaps this that made Spurs go for Erikson instead. Long Term Prospects: Like Daniele Di Rossi, Pjanic is a Roma fans favourite, but unlike his teammate, Pjanic will be disinclined to stay unless Roma can establish themselves in the Italian top three. Spurs will probably drop their interest after their summer spree, but Man United would definitely benefit from a player of his ilk. -- Arda TuranTargeted By: Liverpool, Galatasary, Monaco How Good is He? Behind Falcao, he was probably the best player at Atletico last year. Brilliant close control, great range of passing and a hard worker to boot. Why didn’t it happen? Having already gained a huge payout from the sale of Falcao in this window, Atletico were under no pressure to sell Arda. On top of that, the player feels settled in Madrid and fought to stay there even when an unnamed club activated his release clause. Long Term Prospects: Unless Atletico lose Simeone or drop out of the Champions League, it’s unlikely he’ll go. Stranger things have happened though… -- Ilkay GundoganTargeted By: Man United, Arsenal How Good is He? Like Sergio Busquets at Barcelona, he may be unsung but it’s debatable whether Dortmund could play the way they do without him. For me, he’s probably in top three deep lying playmakers in Europe, if not the world. The fact that Dortmund picked him to take their penalty in the Champions League final also speaks volumes for his character. Why didn’t it happen? Simply put, Gundogan didn’t want to move and no club bid enough money to force a sale. He’s still only 22 however, so a move in the future is extremely likely. Long Term Prospects: Dortmund will do everything they can to keep Gundogan, especially if Lewandowski completes his widely anticipated move to Bayern next summer. -- Lars BenderTargeted By: Arsenal How Good is He? The stand out player in a fairly decent Leverkusen side, he’d be a good fit for most premier league sides as a tough tackling midfielder with a bit of class. Why didn’t it happen? A rare case of a club saying a player ‘isn’t for sale’ and actually meaning it. Arsenal reportedly bid around £20m for the player in July, but a sale was quickly ruled out. Long Term Prospects? Leverkusen don’t exactly need the money, and Bender seems settled at the club. Given his worth to the club, any move will be for a large fee. -- Burak YilmazTargeted By: Arsenal, Liverpool, LazioHow Good is He? He was a prolific goalscorer in Turkey and the Champions League last season, with 26 in all competitions. However, he would have been a risk for a Premier League club given his age (28), and lack of big club experience. Why didn’t it happen? Lazio put in a late bid, and for a while it looked like they’d got their man, but talks broke down and Yilmaz stayed. Long Term Prospects? Probably too old for a move to a big club now, but if he does move anywhere it might be to an Italian club.
Yohan CabayeTargeted By: Arsenal,PSG How Good is He?Good enough to be a regular in the France team, and can take an incredible free kick. Why didn’t it happen? PSG’s interest never materialized, and Arsenal seemingly lost theirs when Ozil became available. Long Term Prospects? Nothing ever makes a great deal of sense at Newcastle, so who knows where Cabaye will be in 12 months time. -- Daniele De RossiTargeted By: Man United How Good is he? Very good. Why didn’t it happen? A player who seems to have been linked to a new club every transfer window for the past 10 years, it should be pretty clear by now that De Rossi doesn’t want to leave. Long Term Prospects? Roma til he dies. -- Diego CostaTargeted By: Liverpool, Spurs How Good is He? The best word to describe him would be ‘combative’, and at times he can get himself into trouble with his on field antics. Overall though, a good all round striker. Why didn’t it happen? Similar to Arda: Atletico didn’t need to sell him and he didn’t want to leave. Long Term Prospects? As long as Simeone is at Athletico, he’ll probably stay. -- Paul PogbaTargeted By: Arsenal, Real Madrid How Good is He? If you believe the hype, absolutely brilliant. Manchester United must be kicking themselves. Why didn’t it happen? Italian champions Juve are under no pressure to sell him, and clearly want to hang on to their young star, after describing him as “worth 2 Bales” Long Term Prospects? Juve are a resurgent club at the moment, and Pogba will probably stay with them if their upward trend continues. - Julian DraxlerTargeted By: Arsenal How Good is He? The tricky, 19 year old ‘wunderkind’ has the potential to be very good indeed. Why didn’t it happen? In an unusual show of loyalty for a footballer, Draxler was adamant about staying at his current club, saying “I have everything I need at Schalke.” Long Term Prospects? Clearly loves the club he is at, and wants to develop there for now. A move in a couple of years isn’t off the cards though.