Euro 2020 is just days away, and that means the rumour mill is about to go into overdrive.
International tournaments always represent something of a showcase for clubs seeking reinforcements and this year will be no different, even if the impact of the pandemic means spending may not quite reach levels of old.
There will be several players eager to impress at these finals: some will be long-term targets out to justify the hype, while others will be seeking a new challenge as contracts begin to wind down.
Using Opta data, Stats Perform has compiled a list of some of the candidates vying to be front and centre of this particular shop window...
Belgium: Jeremy Doku
One of Belgium's less-known attacking stars, Jeremy Doku was directly involved in 10 goals in the Jupiler League by the time he was 18 years and 115 days old, a record bettered only by Romelu Lukaku.
Previously wanted by Liverpool, the Rennes forward could become a target for Jurgen Klopp – thought to be exploring new attacking options – should he be given the chance to impress by Roberto Martinez.
11 - @rscanderlecht's Jéremy Doku completed 11 dribbles against KV Oostende (15 attempted) and is the first player to record at least 10 succesful dribbles in a Jupiler Pro League match since Yassine El Ghanassi in January 2017. Devilish. pic.twitter.com/eBAv1fnJA6— OptaJohan (@OptaJohan) August 28, 2020
Croatia: Bruno Petkovic
"Bruno Petkovic has to be at Euro 2020 what [Mario] Mandzukic was in Russia," said Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic last month. No pressure, then.
Still, the Dinamo Zagreb forward impressed in last season's Europa League with four goals in nine starts and could represent a relatively low-cost option in the market.
England: Jadon Sancho
The star performer as Borussia Dortmund won the DFB-Pokal final, Jadon Sancho was the first English player since David Beckham 20 years ago to register at least 10 assists for three seasons in a row in Europe's top-five leagues.
Manchester United continue to be mooted as the winger's most likely destination should he leave Dortmund, but a star turn at the Euros could trigger a bidding war among some of the biggest clubs.
10 - Jadon #Sancho has registered 10+ assists for the third consecutive Bundesliga campaign, becoming the first Englishman to reach 10 assists in three straight seasons in Europe's top five leagues since David #Beckham between 1997-98 and 2000-01 (four seasons). All-seeing. pic.twitter.com/MLn09QRNyv— OptaFranz (@OptaFranz) May 16, 2021
France: Jules Kounde
Getting into the France starting line-up is no easy task these days, but Jules Kounde could well force Didier Deschamps' hand given the qualities he brings to centre-back.
An accomplished stopper, the Sevilla man is also impeccable on the ball: he made 887 forward passes in LaLiga last season, the most of any outfield player. Little wonder that Barcelona, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal have all been linked.
98.7% - Jules Koundé ?? has completed 98.7% of his passes against Atlético de Madrid (78/79), his best passing accuracy in a game for @SevillaFC_ENG in all competitions (minimum five minutes played). Leader. pic.twitter.com/ZQqUQr8p6t— OptaJose (@OptaJose) April 4, 2021
Germany: Florian Neuhaus
Given he has been linked with Bayern Munich for months now, Florian Neuhaus must be doing something right.
The 108th Germany debutant under Joachim Low, the Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder could well find himself in high demand in the transfer window should he earn a regular spot at the Euros.
Italy: Manuel Locatelli
The heartbeat of a vibrant Sassuolo side, Manuel Locatelli in January became the first Italian player born after January 1, 1998 to record 10 Serie A assists.
Juventus are considered his likely next destination, but there are reports of interest from the Premier League, which would likely only increase in number should he shine at the Euros.
Netherlands: Memphis Depay
It appears likely Memphis Depay will leave Lyon for Barcelona on a free transfer, but, as long as that deal is not concluded, other clubs may sense the chance to snap up the forward.
Depay just became the first Lyon player to register at least 20 goals and 10 assists in a single Ligue 1 season since at least 2006-07 and looks like one of the Oranje's form players.
20 - Memphis Depay becomes the first Lyon player to score 20 goals and deliver 10 assists in a single Ligue 1 season since Opta analysed the competition (2006/07). Brilliant. #NOOL pic.twitter.com/pAamSPOJoA— OptaJean (@OptaJean) May 16, 2021
Poland: Kacper Kozlowski
At just 17, Kacper Kozlowski has established himself in the Pogon Szczecin first team, something made all-the-more remarkable given he was badly injured in a car crash in January 2020.
Although a name not well known outside Poland, the midfielder has been scouted by Manchester United and interest across the continent could well pick up after this tournament.
Portugal: Nuno Mendes
Considered one of Portugal's brightest prospects, Nuno Mendes has already been linked with the Manchester clubs after shining for Sporting CP.
Interest in the 18-year-old is only likely to increase should he perform well at the Euros, especially if he ousts Raphael Guerreiro from the side, and Sporting would surely be prepared to sell for a handsome fee.
Russia: Denis Cheryshev
Zero goas in 21 games for Valencia in LaLiga last season underlined a frustrating spell for Denis Cheryshev at club level.
The 30-year-old was Russia's star performer at the World Cup three years ago, though, and the Euros offer a good chance to tempt any possible suitors as he considers his future.
21 - Denis Cheryshev in 2020/21 La Liga season:— OptaIvan (@OptaIvan) May 22, 2021
- 21 games played (1102 minutes)
- 0 goals (1 xG), 20 shots, 6 shots on target
- 3 assists (2.08 xA), 16 chances created
- 9/50 successful crosses from open play
- 8/25 dribbles completed
- 15/19 tackles won
Spain: Pau Torres
Pau Torres was at the heart of Villarreal's Europa League triumph. In fact, he made nine appearances without being dribbled past, a single-season tally only bettered twice in the competition's history.
The centre-back has made it clear he is happy at the club, but strong performances for Spain could tempt suitors including Manchester United to test Villarreal's resolve to keep him.
9 - @Eng_Villarreal' Pau Torres is the defender with the most games played without being dribbled in the #UEL 20/21 (9). Since 2009/10, just two defenders have played more than him without being dribbled in a single season: Willy Boly (12, 15/16) y Papa Gueye (11, 11/12). Wall. pic.twitter.com/xDNJCeRc4b— OptaJose (@OptaJose) May 27, 2021
Sweden: Alexander Isak
Linked with Barcelona during the season, Real Sociedad's Alexander Isak broke Zlatan Ibrahimovic's record for most goals by a Swede in a single LaLiga campaign by scoring 17 in 2020-21.
With Ibrahimovic missing these finals due to injury, 21-year-old Isak has a good opportunity to impress on the international stage.
16 - Aleksander Isak is the first Real Sociedad player to score 16 goals in a single LaLiga season since Antoine Griezmann (16) and Carlos Vela (16) in 2013/14. Protagonist. pic.twitter.com/TD6V0Xr9Xq— OptaJose (@OptaJose) May 16, 2021
Switzerland: Denis Zakaria
With his contract expiring next year, Denis Zakaria could be a more affordable midfield signing for any clubs willing to tempt Borussia Monchengladbach into a sale.
The 24-year-old offers great variety to the Switzerland midfield and English sides are expected to be watching him closely at these finals.
Ukraine: Ruslan Malinovskiy
Ruslan Malinovskiy is another Atalanta player to catch the eye under Gian Piero Gasperini. He was directly involved in a goal every 94 minutes in Serie A in 2020-21, the most of any midfielder to play at least 15 times.
Now 28, this could be his best chance to secure a significant transfer should he decide to leave Bergamo, and there have been rumblings of interest from Chelsea.
2 - Before Ruslan Malinovskiy, the last foreign player to provide at least two assists in two consecutive Serie A games was Luis Figo in September 2007. Generous.#FiorentinaAtalanta pic.twitter.com/tIuOen6EIt— OptaPaolo (@OptaPaolo) April 11, 2021
Wales: Gareth Bale
With 11 goals in 10 Premier League starts in 2020-21, Gareth Bale registered the best minutes-per-goal ratio (84) of any of the competition's top goalscorers.
He is returning to Real Madrid following his loan at Tottenham and Carlo Ancelotti appears keen to keep him, but heroics for Wales could encourage suitors to bid.
14 - Following his assist for Dan James' winner, Gareth Bale has had a hand in 14 goals in his last 19 starts for Wales (7 goals, 7 assists), providing an assist in each of his last four appearances for the Dragons. Class. pic.twitter.com/4ZLGY5fe02— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) March 30, 2021