The January transfer window may have only just closed but the world of transfers never stops.
I know, of course, The Athletic is already looking ahead to the summer.
That is the next time clubs in Europe’s major leagues will be able to strengthen their squads. The landscape is likely to look very different — trophies, European places and relegation will all be decided by the time the summer window opens.
But when exactly will clubs be able to do business again and which deals are worth looking out for?
We are on hand to take you through all the important details.
When does the summer transfer window open?
The exact date for the opening of the summer transfer window has not yet been announced. However, it will not be long before that information is confirmed.
For reference, June 10 was when Premier League clubs could start registering new signings last year. Twelve months earlier, in 2021, it was June 9.
So it is fair to assume that this year’s summer transfer window will follow a similar pattern and open within the first couple of weeks of June.
Using the same method, the window will likely close for business around 12 weeks later, on September 1.
Which players are likely to move in the summer transfer window?
Despite the next transfer window being just over four months away, there are several moves that we can anticipate.
The biggest signings are often held back until the summer with finances tighter in January (unless you are Todd Boehly).
Clubs are not willing to sell their prized assets in the middle of the season. A lack of time to source a worthwhile replacement usually makes it highly improbable that a big-money deal gets completed.
That leaves plenty of appetite to return to such deals in the summer.
Here are a few players most likely to be the subject of substantial bids when the season has finished.
The transfer battle for Jude Bellingham at the end of the season could be one of the biggest ever seen.
At the age of just 19, he is already one of the world’s best midfielders, so it is easy to see why the vultures of European football are circling.
Although, he will come at a serious cost.
the Dortmund midfielder’s contract in Germany runs until the end of the 2024-25 season and he is far from short of potential suitors. Those two factors mean the anticipated move for Bellingham is likely to be the biggest of the summer transfer window.
That being said, there is another midfielder who will run the England stay close…
Another young midfielder likely to move in the summer is Moises Caicedo.
It looked as though he was set for a big-money transfer in January but Brighton played hard ball, leaving arsenal and Chelsea to look elsewhere.
The south coast club will not be any easier to negotiate with when the summer window opens — although they will have more time to source a replacement.
Caicedo made his desire to leave public so plenty of clubs will be on alert as the season reaches its conclusion.
Another young midfielder, I can only apologise.
We reported midway through January that Arsenal were planning a move for Declan Rice in the summer transfer window.
The failed pursuit of Caicedo only increases the chance of a move for West Ham‘s 24-year-old midfield enforcer.
However, should Rice outline his intentions to leave the London Stadium, Arsenal would surely be joined by other interested sides.
Which players are out of contract in the summer?
Not all transfer deals have to involved a fee. In fact, this summer, there are plenty of talented players due to be out of contract.
There seems to be more high-profile players than ever running down their deals, bringing about the opportunity for a free transfer.
An explanation for that might be because of the financial discrepancy across the major European leagues. Premier League clubs are years ahead of their continental peers in terms of fees for transfers, at the moment, so moves Spain, Italy, Germany and France have not been as forthcoming as they were previously.
Between now and the end of June, there is plenty of scope for players with expiring contracts to sign renewals but some of them will leave their current employers for nothing in the summer.
Players in the final six months of their contracts are allowed to agree pre-contract agreements with foreign clubs.
The players in that situation to keep an eye on are:
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