ESPN writers have everything you need to know about the top teams’ hopes and delve into deals that might be in the cards. Who will come in? Who will depart?
Teams in order of finishing place in 2022-23 season.
Budget: Only limited by the usual financial fair play concerns, but they won’t be frivolous.
What does the team need? City have had a great season and the squad doesn’t need much, just a tweak here and there. Much will depend on departures. Pep Guardiola would like a midfielder and a left-back, while a centre-back could also arrive. There is also money to spend at City for the right deal but Guardiola and director of football Txiki Begiristain won’t force it if they can’t get the right players.
Who could be leaving? Departures are likely to have a big impact on what happens at the Etihad Stadium this summer. Guardiola wants to keep midfielders Ilkay Gundogan and Bernardo Silva, but Gundogan is out of contract and Silva has felt for a while that it’s time to move on, either to Paris Saint-Germain or Barcelona. City will allow the Portugal midfielder to leave but only if their valuation is met, which it wasn’t last summer. Defender Aymeric Laporte could also leave after losing his place in Guardiola’s first-choice team, while full-back Joao Cancelo has been linked with a permanent move when he returns from his loan at Bayern Munich.
Any new contracts? The key one for City and Guardiola is Gundogan. He’ll be 33 early next season, but he has proved that he is still a key part of the team during the run-in and an FA Cup final where he scored twice. City are offering a one-year contract with the option of another year, and Barcelona are offering a straight two-year deal. Arsenal are also interested as manager Mikel Arteta looks to bring in experienced cover. — Rob Dawson
Budget: Around £100m to £120m, plus money from player exits. A return to the Champions League after six years away has given them a financial boost.
What does the team need? Mikel Arteta wants to revamp Arsenal’s midfield with two signings. The Gunners are also interested in bolstering their options at centre-back and right-back. A new forward has been discussed, too.
Who are the major targets? West Ham’s Declan Rice is Arsenal’s preferred midfield signing this summer but the club face competition from Bayern Munich among others at over £100m. The Gunners also had multiple bids rejected for Brighton’s Moises Caicedo and so a renewed attempt to sign him this summer would be no surprise.
Arsenal have offered a contract to Manchester City‘s Gundogan, who is yet to decide whether to stay with the champions or leave on a free transfer, but Barcelona are also pushing hard for his signature. The club have also been linked with Man City’s Cancelo and Chelsea’s Mason Mount.
Who could be leaving? Bayer Leverkusen are hoping to sign midfielder Granit Xhaka for around £12m, while injury-hit left-back Kieran Tierney is expected to move on with Newcastle monitoring his situation. Centre-back Rob Holding has also been made available, while the futures of midfielder Emile Smith Rowe and new USMNT striker Folarin Balogun are uncertain. PSG are reportedly interested in midfielder Martin Odegaard but Arsenal have no interest in letting him go. Cedric Soares spent six months on loan at Fulham last season and could be moved on, as could winger Nicolas Pepe.
Any new contracts? William Saliba‘s future is the immediate priority. The club have already signed Gabriel Martinelli, Aaron Ramsdale and Bukayo Saka to long-term deals and the club remain confident they can tie down the young centre-back, who has a year remaining on his existing agreement. Winger Reiss Nelson has rejected more than one offer of a new contract but the club remain in talks. — James Olley.
Budget: Between £100m and £150m.
What does the team need? A lot. The priorities are an established striker and a No. 8 midfielder, but manager Erik ten Hag has also made his case to football director John Murtough and the recruitment team that the squad also need a goalkeeper, right-back, centre-back, another midfielder and another forward. Ten Hag knows he won’t get all that in one summer but he sees it as part of his job to be demanding.
Who are the major targets? Ten Hag wants Harry Kane but the club’s hierarchy know how difficult it will be to do a £100m-plus deal with Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy. If negotiations become drawn out, United are prepared to move on, and there are other targets including Napoli‘s Victor Osimhen, Atalanta‘s Rasmus Hojlund, Eintracht Frankfurt‘s Randal Kolo Muani, Juventus‘ Dusan Vlahovic, Benfica‘s Goncalo Ramos, AS Roma‘s Tammy Abraham and Ajax‘s Brian Brobbey.
Sources said there is confidence that a deal for midfielder Mount can be done despite concerns over Chelsea’s £60m valuation. He’s only got a year left on his contract at Stamford Bridge and has indicated to United that he is willing to move. Napoli defender Kim Min-jae has also been linked.
Who could be leaving? United hope to raise extra funds through a number of departures and they’re willing to listen to offers for a host of first-team squad players. Midfielder Scott McTominay is wanted by Newcastle, while West Ham are expected to come back for centre-back Harry Maguire after having an enquiry knocked back in January. Fred, Anthony Martial, Anthony Elanga, Dean Henderson, Eric Bailly and Alex Telles could also leave.
Any new contracts? Goalkeeper David de Gea is close to signing a new contract, with his current terms expiring this summer, but has been told his status as No. 1 next season is not guaranteed. Sources said that backup Dean Henderson will be allowed to leave permanently for Nottingham Forest. United have wrapped up long-term deals for full-backs Luke Shaw and Diogo Dalot and next on the list is Marcus Rashford. The England striker is about to enter the last year of his contract and United are hoping to reach an agreement quickly, ideally before the first international break of next season. — Rob Dawson.
Why Newcastle United makes sense for Christian Pulisic
James Olley suggests Newcastle United as a smart potential destination for USMNT star Christian Pulisic.
What does the team need? A bit of everything. It may sound simplistic, but having qualified for the Champions League for the first time in 20 years, Newcastle need to add quality and quantity to their squad this summer.
Manager Eddie Howe guided the Magpies to a top-four finish well ahead of schedule with a squad that have yet to fully benefit from the huge wealth of their Saudi Arabia-backed owners. Key players such as goalkeeper Nick Pope (£10m), full-back Kieran Trippier (£12m), centre-back Sven Botman (£32m) and midfielder Bruno Guimaraes (£40m) are among those to arrive since the takeover in October 2021, but they have been astute signings for midrange fees rather than the kind of A-list deals Newcastle now have the financial power to pull off.
Forward Alexander Isak (£63m) was a club-record move, but this summer will be all about making Newcastle stronger in every area of the pitch. The incentive of playing in the Champions League next season will be an attractive proposition for potential signings.
In terms of specific areas in need of reinforcements, a new left-back to challenge Dan Burn will be a priority, while Howe is likely to pursue at least two new forwards.
Who are the major targets? In keeping with the understated approach of Howe, Newcastle’s summer shortlist remains low-key and there are no noises emerging from St James’ Park about headline-grabbing moves for some of the game’s biggest stars.
Newcastle are pursuing Arsenal defender Tierney, with the former Celtic left-back identified as a potential replacement for Burn. Leicester City‘s James Maddison has been a long-term target for Newcastle and the England player is set to leave the King Power Stadium following the club’s relegation from the Premier League.
Who could be leaving? Newcastle have six players — Matt Ritchie, Loris Karius, Matty Longstaff, Paul Dummett, Ciaran Clark and Mark Gillespie — whose contracts expire at the end of June and all are expected to be released.
Goalkeepers Martin Dubravka and Karl Darlow have both spent time away from Newcastle on loan this season, so their futures are also in doubt. Jamaal Lascelles, Matt Targett, Jamal Lewis, Javi Manquillo, Jeff Hendrick and Ryan Fraser have dropped out of the picture under Howe and likely to be allowed to leave. Winger Allan Saint-Maximin could leave the club if a suitable offer arrives.
Any new contracts? Striker Callum Wilson, left-back Burn and centre-back Fabian Schar all have 12 months to run on their existing deals and can expect offers of new contracts. Wilson and Burn, both 31, have been key figures this season, but both are likely to see their places come under threat with new signings, so this summer will be decisive for them. — Mark Ogden
Ogden: Mac Allister the first step in Liverpool’s rebuild
Mark Ogden analyses Liverpool’s pursuit of Brighton’s Alexis Mac Allister.
What does the team need? The No. 1 priority for Liverpool this summer is to overhaul Jurgen Klopp’s midfield and that process has already started with James Milner, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to be released at the end of their contracts.
With Jordan Henderson and Thiago Alcantara both 32, and Fabinho the youngest of Klopp’s regular midfield starters at 29, Liverpool are now facing a bigger rebuilding job than they would if they had started to address the issue 12 months ago. They recently withdrew from the £100m-plus race to sign Borussia Dortmund and England midfielder Bellingham because of the likely cost of the deal, with the club focusing instead on signing two or three midfielders for the same financial outlay.
Having spent heavily to bolster their attacking options in the last three windows by signing Luis Diaz (£37m), Darwin Nunez (£80m) and Cody Gakpo (£35m), Liverpool have no need to add any more forwards. But they are likely to pursue reinforcements at full-back. With Trent Alexander-Arnold allowed to push more into midfield this season, adding another right-back as cover is key.
Liverpool are also trying to persuade Mount to leave Chelsea for Anfield but face stiff competition from Manchester United and Arsenal for the 24-year-old.
Meanwhile, Wolves’ Matheus Nunes is another target and a deal for the Portugal midfielder could be an easy one to agree because of the club needing to offload players in order to avoid non-compliance with the Premier League’s financial fair play regulations.
Who could be leaving? Liverpool have already started their summer clearout, with midfielders Milner, Keita and Oxlade-Chamberlain heading out of the exit door. Striker Roberto Firmino has also left Anfield at the end of his contract.
Fabio Carvalho, signed from Fulham last summer, could be allowed to leave in order to help boost Liverpool’s transfer funds, while the club has had interest in Curtis Jones from Premier League rivals.
And while Mohamed Salah signed a three-year contract last year, the 30-year-old forward’s outspoken comments about Liverpool’s failure to qualify for the Champions League might trigger a summer of speculation over his future. Liverpool will resist attempts to prise him away, but if a major European team makes a move, watch this space.
Any new contracts? Nothing major in the pipeline. Liverpool have spent the past 18 months securing their top stars and young players to new long-term contracts. — Mark Ogden
Could Ange Postecoglou tempt Harry Kane to stay at Tottenham?
James Olley details what Ange Postecoglou will look to bring to Spurs if he agrees to take over as manager.
Budget: Reduced by an absence of European football, Spurs will still be able to provide some funding to back new head coach Ange Postecoglou.
What does the team need? Postecoglou will assess his squad over the next few weeks to determine the club’s transfer strategy. Spurs conceded 63 Premier League goals last season — a figure only surpassed by the three relegated teams, as well as Bournemouth and Nottingham Forest — so there are major issues defensively. A new goalkeeper, at least one new centre-back and perhaps a new left-back are all needed, while some fresh creativity in midfield would not go amiss either.
Who are the major targets? Difficult to answer comprehensively given Spurs have a new manager yet to start work, but the club previously expressed an interest in Fulham winger Manor Solomon and also Brentford goalkeeper David Raya. They are also expected to convert forward Dejan Kulusevski‘s loan deal from Juventus into a permanent transfer. Spurs have been repeatedly linked with a move for Leicester City playmaker James Maddison, who is available after the club were relegated, but it is unclear at this stage whether Postecoglou wants him. The same goes for Man United centre-back Maguire, while a permanent move for Barcelona’s Clement Lenglet is being considered once his loan ends.
Who could be leaving? Speculation over Kane’s future could dominate Tottenham’s summer. Real Madrid and Manchester United are interested in signing the 29-year-old but Spurs are reluctant to let him go, even with a contract that expires in 2024. It remains to be seen whether Postecoglou’s appointment is enough to convince Kane to stay, or even sign a new deal.
Brazilian winger Lucas Moura has already left, while 36-year-old goalkeeper Hugo Lloris has announced his intention to seek a new challenge with a year left on his deal. Right-back Djed Spence spent the second half of last season on loan and Spurs may be willing to listen to offers to sign the right-back. Wing-back Ivan Perisic was brought in on a free transfer at Antonio Conte’s behest, so he could be moved on, while the futures of defenders Davinson Sanchez and Ryan Sessegnon are unclear.
Postecoglou will influence decisions going forward but, as it stands, Spurs are expected to allow loanee Arnaut Danjuma to return to Villarreal and will also listen to offers for midfielders Giovani Lo Celso and Harry Winks, as well as left-back Sergio Reguilon.
Any new contracts? Spurs will try to get Kane to pen a new contract if they retain him beyond this transfer window. Eric Dier‘s agreement expires in 2024 but the club denied reports an extension had been agreed last month. — James Olley
Ogden: No surprise Pulisic on way out of Chelsea
Mark Ogden gives the latest on Christian Pulisic’s future after Juventus emerge as front-runners to sign the USMNT forward from Chelsea.
Budget: The club insist UEFA’s financial fair play rules are not a major concern, despite spending £600m in 12 months only to then miss out on Europe after a dismal season. While there are funds available, moving players on is the initial priority.
What does the team need? New head coach Mauricio Pochettino will be working that out now. Any objective look at the squad would conclude at least one centre-forward is a high priority, even with Romelu Lukaku‘s loan at Inter ending. The club are also short of depth in central midfield and a new goalkeeper would be a consideration after mixed spells for both Kepa Arrizabalaga and Edouard Mendy.
Who are the major targets? Chelsea pulled out of a £52m deal for Sporting CP midfielder Manuel Ugarte, who is set to sign for PSG instead, and are considering other options including Brighton’s Caicedo and Southampton‘s Romeo Lavia. They may consider moving for West Ham’s Rice. France forward Christopher Nkunku is expected to join from RB Leipzig for over £60m, having agreed terms last year.
Pochettino would likely be interested in Kane if he chose to leave Tottenham but the prospects of the two London rivals agreeing a deal are remote. Napoli’s Osimhen is likely to be of interest, although Chelsea would face strong competition for his signature, while Inter’s Lautaro Martinez is another option.
Who could be leaving? Almost too many to mention. Chelsea ended the season with 31 first-team players on their books, plus eight returning on loan, so there will be a significant number of departures. Of course, Pochettino will have his say in the coming weeks but Mount is likely to leave, with Manchester United leading the race for his signature.
The versatile Ruben Loftus-Cheek is attracting interest from AC Milan, while winger Hakim Ziyech almost joined PSG in January and could move on alongside attacker Christian Pulisic, striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang — who could rejoin Barcelona — and winger Callum Hudson-Odoi. Manchester City are exploring a move for midfielder Mateo Kovacic while Mendy, Kalidou Koulibaly, Conor Gallagher, Kai Havertz and Marc Cucurella face an uncertain summer. Juventus midfielder Denis Zakaria will return to Italy after his loan spell, while Brighton are interested in signing defender Levi Colwell after his loan, but the Blues continue to insist he is part of their long-term plans.
Any new contracts? It has long been expected that N’Golo Kante would sign a new deal but the longer the wait goes on, the more doubt creeps in. Another injury setback has not helped and he has been linked with a move to Saudi Arabia. — James Olley