French football and the UEFA Champions League continue to be suspended due to the coronavirus crisis and with no end in sight, I thought I would look ahead to this summer’s transfer window and analyze how Paris Saint-Germain could revamp their squad with many departures expected.
Before I get started, it’s important to note that the coronavirus will have a profound impact on the transfer market.
First of all, travel bans have made it very difficult for scouts to do their job, which is to travel around the world and evaluate players.
Secondly, the pandemic is wreaking havoc on global financial markets. Football clubs will not be immune, which is why UEFA plans to lessen Financial Fair Play regulations to help cash-strapped clubs survive this difficult time.
With league matches likely extending into the summer, this upcoming transfer window is going to be unlike any we’ve experienced before. So, as you read through my thoughts on what PSG should do, keep all of this in mind and know that the situation is extremely fluid despite PSG’s seemingly endless access to cash despite the impending global recession.
Edinson Cavani – El Matador was nearly an Atlético Madrid player last January and with his contract set to expire in June, this club legend will not be finishing his career in the French capital.
Thiago Silva – At 35-years-old and the third-highest salary on the team, Silva will likely not be offered a contract extension and will be allowed to sign for any team he wants this summer on a free transfer.
Mauro Icardi – On loan from Inter Milan this season, Mauro Icardi hasn’t shown enough consistency to warrant PSG spending the €70 million it would cost to sign him permanently.
Thomas Meunier – According to several reports, Thomas Meunier has already agreed on a contract with Borussia Dortmund when his current deal with PSG expires in June.
Julian Draxler – The Germany international is in search of more minutes at PSG and with the UEFA Euros being pushed back until 2021, Julian Draxler will likely ask for a transfer if he’s not in Thomas Tuchel’s plans.
Sergio Rico – The goalkeeper is on loan at PSG from Sevilla FC but I don’t expect the club to pick up the option to buy. He just hasn’t impressed enough during his spot appearances to justify it.
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting – It’s time for the author of one of the most horrendous misses in football history to find a new club.
Alphonse Areola – Currently on loan at Real Madrid, the Frenchman is expected to finally move on from PSG permanently when his contract expires in June.
Sergej Milinković-Savić – The Serbia international is one of the most highly-coveted midfielders in Europe and Lazio’s asking price will be substantial, rumored to be around €100 million. PSG’s sporting director, Leonardo, is a long-time admirer of Milinković-Savić and pairing him with Marco Verratti and Marquinhos would make PSG supporters salivate at the potential.
Kalidou Koulibaly – Another Serie A superstar should be on Leonardo’s shopping list this summer. Kalidou Koulibaly recently purchased a luxury apartment in Paris and with Silva expected to leave the club, the 28-year-old would be the ideal replacement. This signing could cost PSG upwards of €100 million as well.
Gianluigi Donnarumma – PSG are set at goalkeeper…for now, but what about the future? Keylor Navas is 33-years-old and has a few years of his prime left but the opportunity to sign a stud goalkeeper like Gianluigi Donnarumma may be too much for Leonardo to pass up. AC Milan’s financial issues and lack of Champions League football could force them to sell their prized asset with €20 million to €25 million expected to be enough to get the deal done. For that price, PSG would be foolish not to throw their hat in the ring for the Italy international.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – The Arsenal FC striker and Tuchel worked together at Dortmund and remain admirers of each other. With the Gunners having another difficult season and Aubameyang preparing to enter the final year of his contract, PSG may be able to lure the 30-year-old away from North London and bring him back to Ligue 1 where he played for Lille OSC and AS Saint-Étienne previously.
Antoine Griezmann – Rumor has it that FC Barcelona will put Antoine Griezmann on the market for €100 million this summer. The Frenchman hasn’t performed up to expectations following his transfer from Atlético Madrid just a year ago and the Catalan club could use the funds to build a better team around an aging Lionel Messi. As always, any deal between Barcelona and PSG will be difficult but if the La Liga giants are desperate, PSG may be able to take advantage of the situation.
Ricardo Pereira – Perhaps no other position is in more need of an upgrade at PSG than right-back. With Meunier leaving and Colin Dagba struggling with fitness, Leicester City FC’s Ricardo Pereira would be the perfect addition to the starting lineup. Unfortunately, the Portugal international suffered a season-ending knee injury on March 9, and will be out until August most likely. Assuming he makes a full recovery, Pereira is the world-class full-back the club desperately needs.
2020-21 Potential Starting Lineup
Manager: Thomas Tuchel
Goalkeeper: Keylor Navas/Gianluigi Donnarumma
Defenders: Juan Bernat, Presnel Kimpembe, Kalidou Koulibaly, Ricardo Pereira
Midfielders: Marquinhos, Marco Verratti, Sergej Milinković-Savić
Forwards: Kylian Mbappé, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang/Antoine Griezmann, Neymar Jr.
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