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Football Manager Transfer Targets To Watch This January

All English top flight sides want to unearth the next Steven Gerrard or Wayne Rooney, but most teams are looking to Europe or beyond to find their next superstar. This January Premier League scouts will have their work cut out to find new players that could bolster their employer’s squad, but a number will have their time to impress onlookers in the new year.

AZ Alkmaar vs Ajax

Football tickets for this crunch Dutch clash are still available for sale at TicketBis online if a trip to Holland is in your travel plans for the new year.

AZ have surprised the Dutch football community by storming to the top of the Eredivisie ahead of the Christmas break, and a number of their players are receiving accolades and acclaim from local and European football news agencies. The current league leaders take on champions Ajax at the AFAS Stadion on Sunday 22nd January in a game that will be watched closely by English coaches and scouts.

AZ’s attacking brand of football has delighted onlookers this season, with their main creative drive coming from 18-year-old Adam Maher. The youngster’s skill and vision is second-to-none and AZ will face a real struggle to hold onto their star prospect.

Ajax have produced the likes of Luis Suarez and Zlatan Ibrehimovic in the recent past, and the latest crop of first-teamers have the ability to play in Europe’s top leagues. Spurs are reportedly very keen to add captain Jan Vertonghen to the White Hart Lane squad in January, whilst Cristian Eriksen is one of the world’s brightest prospects – Manchester United and Chelsea will have to pay a high price to add the Denmark international to their ranks.

Hamburg vs Borussia Dortmund

The German champions are hot on the heels of Bayern Munich at the top of the Bundesliga, but face a tough test against Hamburg on Sunday 22nd January.

Jurgen Klopp’s starting XI is made up of predominantly young players, with a number already receiving international recognition and being linked with a move to Spain, Italy or England.

Mats Hummels is a mainstay in the Germany side after excellent defensive performances last season, and the centre half is on most of the top teams’ wishlists at the moment. The star of Signal Iduna Park however is Mario Gotze; the 19-year-old playmaker has all the attributes to be a world star and Arsenal are reportedly ready to break their club transfer record to bring him to North London.

Benfica vs Vitoria Setubal

The Portuguese Primeira Liga was dominated by Porto in 2010-11, with Andre Villas Boas leading the Estadio do Dragao side to the title, however this term Benfica have shown that they will be real contenders come May.

Jorge Jesus’ side have excelled at home and on the continent, with a number of young players catching the eye of Premier League coaches and talent-seekers.

Although Javi Garcia and Axel Witsel have impressed with solid midfield performances, the player attracting the most attention is Argentine playmaker Nicolas Gaitan. Manchester United are hot on the heels of the South American attacker, with a bid of at least Ł20 million needed to convince Benfica to sell.

Watch Football with TicketBis

If you’re a frequent travel and want to watch football matches where you go, check out TicketBis, an online tickets exchange that specialises in helping football fans buy and sell tickets online for just about any game in Europe.


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MikeMartin - F.M.J.SvaibhavcJohnny KarpKevin Recent comment authors
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Darren Smith

Interesting post Johnny and you have a point. With the transfer window opening soon those matches could make or break some careers. The likes of Eriksen and Vertoghen will be watched very closely by top scouts and a good performance will almost certainly attract a bid. I for one am looking forward to the race for Gotze’s signature, Arsenal seem to be mentioned most but I can’t see the two Spanish giants letting such a talent go to one of their European competitors.


Hey Johnny
Nice little article that you’ve put together here so thanks for sharing.

Here’s a player I’ve been hearing about from my Canada Post mail man who is orignally from Chile and says this youngster is terrific.

Eduardo Vargas this year became one of the hottest properties in South American football, where he helped Universidad win their first ever Copa Sudamericana, netting three times in the two-leg final to top the competition scoring charts on 11 goals.
The 22-year-old Universidad de Chile star is set to move to Napoli for a fee thought to be around £11.5million next month


Oh Eduardo Vargas, heard he snubbed Liverpool and Chelsea and chose Napoli


And Man United as well according to my mailman :)


Benfica did pretty well this season, finished top their champions league group and all :P

AZ Alkmaar have been impressive too but I think their goalkeeper needs to control himself, he assaulted a pitch invader and was sent off (the manager called the rest of the team to walk off the pitch too I think)

Gotze is going to cost a LOT (maybe more than what Fabregas went to Barcelona for) , I just cannot envision Wenger paying so much for one player, even though signing Gotze would probably persuade RVP to stay

I think Wenger is looking for a left back on a short term deal though………most reports seem to indicate Wayne Bridge being a potential option


Nice post mate.


If you get anything in Bahrain, tell me because I will go and see the game lol! But if I have time, I will see the game on TV.

Martin - F.M.J.S

Nice post mate and some interesting information which I will look out for :).


Nice post, Johnny. I wouldn’t mind one bit if you added more “real football” bits interspersed with the stories and tactics. You, Darren and the lads certainly know enough to make it worthwhile if you ever expanded your coverage.

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