Who will the Premier League giants sign this summer?
Portugal's triumph in the Euro 2016 signalled the starting gun for the new Premier League season - with scramble in the transfer market this summer likely to be more frantic that ever before.
With the top clubs now back in pre-season training and some big money signings already confirmed in a summer when England’s top clubs are flushed with cash thanks to a fresh lucrative broadcasting contract, this is set to be the busiest summer of spending on record.
A host of newly appointed managers should ensure that spending records are shattered before the transfer deadline at the end of August and here is your Sunday World guide to the areas the players the top clubs will target ahead of the big kick-off.
Signings: Nampalys Mendy (Nice), Luis Hernandez (Sporting Gijon), Ahmed Musa (CSKA Moscow).
Linked with: Robin van Persie (Fenerbahce), Ragnar Sigurdsson (FC Krasnodar), Robbie Brady (Norwich - below).
Leicester’s success in hanging on to lead striker Jamie Vardy after he turned down the advances of Arsenal may prove to be the best piece of the business the Premier League champions complete this summer, yet they are far from certain to hang on to their other Premier League title winning heroes.
Midfielder N’Golo Kante is being strongly linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain, while Riyad Mahrez is also a transfer target for Arsenal, yet a move to recruit Dutch veteran Van Persie and Republic of Ireland Euro 2016 hero Brady would bolster the Leicester squad ahead of their Champions League debut.
Signings: Granit Xhaka (B Monchengladbach - below), Takuma Asano (Sanfrecce Hiroshima).
Linked with: Alexandre Lacazette (Lyon), Romelu Lukaku (Everton).
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger may believe he went some way to silencing his critics with a second place finish in the Premier League last season, but patience with the veteran Gunners boss is running thin.
The Gunners need to spend big on a top class striker and a proven central defender to bolster his squad, but the danger must be that Olivier Giroud’s decent form at Euro 2016 will encourage cautious spender Wenger to avoid a cash splurge this summer, even though moves for strikers Lacazette or Lukaku would be welcomed.
Signing: Victor Wanyama (Southampton), Vincent Janssen (AZ Alkmaar).
Linked with: Mauro Icardi (Inter Milan), Lucas Alario (River Plate), Vincent Janssen (AZ Alkmaar).
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino must have been concerned by his side’s alarming collapse at the back end of the club’s most promising title challenge in a generation last season and he is targeting attacking strength to support lead striker Harry Kane.
With Champions League football to be played at Wembley added to the Spurs agenda, Inter Milan forward Icardi is a high profile target, with youngster Lucas Alario also linked. Forward Vincent Janssen is believed to be close to arriving.
Signings: Ilkay Gundogan (Borussia Dortmund - below), Nolito (Celta Vigo), Oleksandr Zinchenko (FC Ufa).
Linked with: Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez (both Barcelona), Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund), Paul Pogba (Juventus), John Stones (Everton).
Every top player in world football is likely to be linked with a move to join Pep Guardiola at Manchester City this summer and it is safe to assume the new manager will be given as much money as he wants in his new post.
Whether that gives him any chance of signing his old Barca charge Messi or his Nou Camp team-mate Suarez remains to be seen, but it would be a surprise if City do not make a marquee signing to mark Guardiola’s arrival.
With so much cash in his transfer kitty, expect City to land a handful of major signings this summer.
Signings: Eric Bailly (Villarreal), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (free), Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Borussia Dortmund).
Linked with: Paul Pogba (Juventus - below), Julian Draxler (Wolfsburg), Blaise Matuidi (PSG).
Jose Mourinho suggested he had targeted four areas to improve the Manchester United sparkling performance in his opening press conference at Old Trafford on Tuesday, with the fourth of those believed to be France midfielder Pogba.
That number will increase if Mourinho off-loads Juan Mata and a few more flops from the Louis van Gaal era, with Matuidi is a back-up option if the Pogba deal fails to materialise. Draxler would be an inspired signings, but he may be tricky to prize out of Wolfsburg just a year after making that move.
Mkhitaryan should be a great signing for Mourinho, offering pace and invention that was missing last season.
Signings: Joel Matip (Schalke), Sadio Mane (Southampton), Loris Karius (Mainz).
Linked with: Mario Gotze (Bayern Munich), Alex Teixeira (Jiangsu Suning), Piotr Zielinski (Udinese)
In a summer packed full of managerial changes, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has a jump start on many of his Premier League rivals as he has had almost a year in his job to assess his squad ahead of the new season.
The £34m capture of Mane was a lavish statement of intent and with Christian Benteke likely to join Crystal Palace in the coming days, expect a high profile striker to arrival at Anfield. That could be Gotze, even though his Euro 2016 form has been patchy so far.
Signings: Michy Batshuayi (Marseille - below).
Linked with: Paul Pogba (Juventus), Alvaro Morata (Real Madrid).
Chelsea’s summer of transfer spending will crank through the gears once new boss Antonio Conte gets behind his desk in the next few days, with a major squad revamp likely to be on his agenda after last season’s disastrous Premier League title defence.
While Mourinho vowed to get Man Utd back to winning ways quickly, Conte may well plead for more time in his mission to transform mess he has inherited at Stamford Bridge. Pelle would be a stop gap signing to bolster the forward line, with Pogba and Morata more ambitious targets.
Signings: Maarten Stekelenburg (Fulham).
Linked with: Juan Mata (Man Utd - below), Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester), Axel Witsel (Zenit St Petersburg).
New Everton boss Ronald Koeman could be a manager to watch in this transfer window as he has been promised a huge transfer kitty after making the move from Southampton and can be expected to make a couple of big signings.
Sunday World sources understand that Koeman’s interest in Mata is genuine, while Everton has already tabled a bid for Belgium Euro 2016 star Witsel. They are the kind of players the Toffees could only dream about signing until their new investor Farhad Moshiri arrived loaded with ambition last February.