Five transfers we expect to happen in January | Virgin Media
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Five transfers we expect to happen in January



The January transfer window is fast approaching its conclusion, with several players around the Premier League still hoping to complete moves elsewhere.

Unhappy players, those looking for more game-time and those seeking a better financial deal are all angling for moves – but which are likely to get their wish?

Here are five looking likely to move this month.

Dimitri Payet (West Ham to Marseille)

The French winger has been very clear about his desire to leave the Hammers. He’s effectively gone on strike at the club and has been made to train with the club’s under-23 side for the time being.

While West Ham are understandably resisting a transfer for their star player, Payet’s stubbornness may mean their hand is forced.

His family has reportedly already moved back to their former home in Marseille, and the 29-year-old is desperate to move back to the French club, where he spent two years before coming to England. In fact, he wants to join Marseille so much, he’s reportedly turning down an offer of £500,000 per week from the Chinese Super League.

So far Marseille have fallen short of West Ham’s £30 million valuation, but as the window nears its end the pressure to cash in will grow. 

Key stat: Payet has created 72 chances in the Premier League this season – more than any other player across Europe’s top five leagues.

Jose Fonte (Southampton to West Ham)

The Southampton captain has handed in a transfer request at the Saints, after turning down the offer of a new contract in the summer having won Euro 2016 with Portugal. Southampton offered him an improved deal, but 33-year-old Fonte wanted a longer contract.

The Portuguese centre-back has a great deal of Premier League experience, and while he is nearing the end of his career, he can offer a safe pair of hands at the back. Southampton chairman Les Reed has already admitted that Saints will sell, provided they can line up a replacement.

Hammers boss Slaven Bilic is keen to bolster his defence, which has let in 35 goals in 21 Premier League games this season. Fonte’s move makes sense for both parties.

Key stat: Fonte has missed just 19 of 173 Premier League games since Southampton were promoted to the Premier League in 2012/13.

Mamadou Sakho (Liverpool to Southampton)

Sakho is finally prepared  to leave and Liverpool want to sell. The French centre-back hasn’t made a single appearance for the Reds this season and has been completely isolated from the first team by manager Jurgen Klopp over grievances with Sakho’s attitude on pre-season tour.

Southampton have reportedly already had a loan bid rejected, with Liverpool instead seeking a £20 million permanent move for the 26-year-old, who signed a new contract last season.

This situation is therefore more one of negotiation. If Fonte does leave, as expected, a move for Sakho, if even slightly more expensive than desired, would make sense for Saints.

Key stat: Sakho won 71 of 115 headed duels in the 2015/16 Premier League season.

Gerard Deulofeu (Everton to Milan)

The Spanish winger has made 11 appearances in the Premier League under Ronald Koeman this season, but seven have come from the substitutes’ bench. The former Barcelona prodigy is frustrated with the lack of opportunities at Everton and Koeman has said he is free to leave in January.

AC Milan have already had a loan bid turned down, but that was because they didn’t want to pay an upfront fee.

Middlesbrough and Ajax are also interested, so Milan will need to come back with a better offer to take Deloufeu away from Merseyside for the remainder of the season.

Key stat: Deloufeu has beaten an average of 3.9 players per Premier League game this season – the most of any Everton player.

Jordan Rhodes (Middlesbrough to Aston Villa) 

Rhodes joined Middlesbrough from Blackburn Rovers on transfer deadline day in the last winter window, and it seems he could be set for a similar move this year too.

The 26-year-old has been a prolific scorer in the Championship, but hasn’t been given an opportunity at Boro in the top flight this season, with just six appearances so far.

Steve Bruce is keen to sign Rhodes for Villa’s promotion push, and although a bid of £6 million with add-ons has been rejected, it seems both parties want to strike a deal and just need to negotiate. Boro want to recoup the £9 million they paid Rovers last year, meaning Villa might have to stump up more cash, or leave it late in the window.

Key stat: Rhodes scored 36 goals in the 2011/12 season for Huddersfield – more than any other player in England’s top four leagues.

Write-up by Felix Keith for