The grass is always greener
The January transfer window is almost over, but there are still plenty of Premier League players who would benefit from changing clubs.
From experienced campaigners who have been overlooked by their managers, to international stars hoping to boost Euro 2020 hopes, to youngsters looking for first-team exposure, we think the following 20 players could do with a move.
Olivier Giroud (Chelsea)
If Giroud wants to go to Euro 2020 with France, never mind start for the world champions, he simply has to get out of west London.
This could be the last major tournament the 33-year-old could realistically feature in, but Didier Deschamps won’t be impressed by his tally of five Premier League games and no goals this season. The striker needs a new club, where he will play a starting role.
Xherdan Shaqiri (Liverpool)
Make no mistake, Shaqiri will be able to hoover up winners’ medals and silverware galore by staying just where he is. But a player of his ability needs space and time to express himself, and at the age of 28 if feels like a waste to have him doing little more than warming Jurgen Klopp’s bench.
There is little chance of him breaking into the starting XI, with Mo Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane ahead of him, and the Swiss has made just six Premier League appearances all season.
Jordon Ibe (Bournemouth)
Ibe’s arrival at Bournemouth in the summer of 2016 promised to give the youngster the launchpad he needed to become a Premier League star, but things haven’t gone to plan for the winger.
The 24-year-old has been almost completely overlooked this season, making just two league appearances, and needs a fresh start to revive his career.
Troy Parrott (Tottenham)
Spurs have reportedly received interest from Championship clubs in a loan move for the striker, which would give the 17-year-old valuable exposure to senior football after lighting up the youth game.
The striker is an exciting prospect, but has featured only once in the Premier League, off the bench for five minutes in a 5-0 win over Burnley. He is ready for more opportunities, and is unlikely to find them under Jose Mourinho.
Mesut Ozil (Arsenal)
Stating the obvious perhaps, but for some time now it has felt like Ozil and Arsenal have nothing left to offer one another.
After being frozen out by Unai Emery, the German has been reintegrated by Mikel Arteta, but he is yet to score a goal in all competitions this season and has just two assists in 18 appearances. The playmaker is already 31 and with 18 months left on his contract, it might be time for something new.
Ravel Morrison (Sheffield United)
We know what you’re thinking: “How many moves does he need to ‘reboot’ his career”?
It’s a fair point, but it looks like the answer is at least one more. Morrison has featured in the Premier League for just 12 minutes this season and hasn’t even been named among the substitutes since September. He’s just 26. Is there still time for him to become a useful player somewhere?
Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace)
Formerly one of the Premier League’s most lethal strikers, Benteke has hit a wall at Crystal Palace and is yet to score in 15 league games this season.
The 29-year-old will surely need to find a new club and start banging the goals in again if he is to stand any chance of making the Belgium squad for Euro 2020.
Nemanja Matic (Manchester United)
Matic is 31 years old, and there's a feeling that he is wasting precious time in his career at Old Trafford as he enters the final six months of his contract.
The Serbian showed his class at Chelsea and started well at Manchester United, but this season he’s fallen behind the likes of Fred and Scott McTominay in the pecking order, making just eight league appearances - although he’s recently been restored to the side.
Still just 32, the Chelsea winger has been a forgotten man at Stamford Bridge this season and needs to switch clubs if he is to find regular game time again.
The Spaniard has featured just five times in the Premier League this season. He’s sure to leave when his contract expires at the end of the season, but he would be better off finding a new club before then.
Connor Wickham (Crystal Palace)
Speculation has been rife this month that Wickham could be heading back to the Championship, and that may be for the best after another forgettable Premier League campaign so far.
The 26-year-old has mustered one goal in seven outings, although all of those chances came from the bench.
Granit Xhaka (Arsenal)
It hasn’t been an easy season for Xhaka, who was stripped of the captaincy back in October after a spat with Arsenal fans during a draw with Crystal Palace.
The Switzerland midfielder has worked his way back into a starting role under Mikel Arteta, but has never truly convinced at the Emirates and would be better appreciated elsewhere.
Phil Jones (Manchester United)
Jones may well be looking over at Chris Smalling’s success at Roma this season and thinking: “I want a piece of that”.
Things have gone stale for the defender at Old Trafford since the arrival of Harry Maguire, and at the age of 27 now would be a good time to change things up. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has given him just two league appearances this season.
Joe Hart (Burnley)
It doesn’t feel like very long ago that Hart was England’s No.1 and fighting for Premier League titles with Man City.
Nowadays, the 32-year-old is warming the bench at Burnley. He hasn’t made a single appearance in the league this season – a move away is a must to revive a career that should still have some legs.
Victor Wanyama (Tottenham)
Wanyama’s time at Spurs appears to be up, as he has made just two Premier League appearances all season and his opportunities haven’t improved since Jose Mourinho replaced Mauricio Pochettino.
With Gedson Fernandes coming in to further bolster the Tottenham midfield ranks this month, the Kenyan needs to leave if he’s to start playing again.
Angus Gunn (Southampton)
England Under-21 international Gunn began the season with the world at his feet, as Southampton’s first-choice goalkeeper and with high hopes of senior international recognition.
But the 24-year-old suffered a disastrous start, conceding 25 goals in 10 games and keeping just two clean sheets. His hopes of clinging onto the No.1 shirt ended when he shipped nine goals against Leicester, and he’s warmed the bench ever since as Alex McCarthy took over.
Billy Gilmour (Chelsea)
The young Scot is a very exciting prospect, who has started to be eased into first team action by Frank Lampard this season.
But with regular football unlikely to be offered to him, a half-season loan spell away from Stamford Bridge could aid the 18-year-old’s development and put him in a position to truly challenge for a starting spot with the Blues next season.
Eric Garcia (Manchester City)
It's worrying for Garcia that he’s found game time hard to come by this season, even though Manchester City have been plagued by defensive injury problems.
The 19-year-old is still a raw talent and has been used sparingly by Pep Guardiola, but a loan move to a club further down the table or abroad could allow him to flourish.
Matty James (Leicester)
There is no future for James at Leicester. That much was made clear when the midfielder was left out of Brendan Rodgers’ 25-man Premier League squad at the start of the year, and the 28-year-old hasn’t featured in any cup competitions either.
He won’t be expensive and he could still have something to offer, but any interested clubs will be wary of the fact that he hasn’t started a Premier League game since March 2018.
Get the best features, fun and footballing frolics straight to your inbox every week.
Thank you for signing up to Four Four Two. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.