Five big names eyeing a loan move in January: Henderson, Saliba, Alonso

Quick Reads

Like Christmas itself, the January transfer window looms on the horizon and legions of cast-aside footballers will have their eye on a temporary move away for more first-team football.

As noted in a recent report by The Athletic’s David Ornstein, ‘the desire to reduce wage bills, offer competitive action, protect players’ values and attract prospective suitors is only likely to increase come 2021 and sources anticipate that will lead to an abundance of loan moves.’

We’ve identified five big names who will be eyeing a transfer away in January.

Dean Henderson

Life this time last year was good for Henderson.

His reputation was blooming as Sheffield United defied the critics and bloodied the noses of the Premier League elite. Meanwhile, the travails of David de Gea at Manchester United meant many were predicting the young goalkeeper would soon become United’s first choice.

Things haven’t quite worked out that way. Henderson returned to Old Trafford this summer but has found himself largely consigned to a substitute role thus far.

According to ESPN, United could now try to find the 23-year-old another temporary home in order for him to play more first-team football.

Having proven his ability last season, plenty of Premier League clubs would love to acquire Henderson’s services until the end of the season.

William Saliba

The 19-year-old was signed by Arsenal in a £27million deal from Saint-Etienne in 2019, returning to the Ligue 1 outfit on loan only to struggle with injuries.

Joining up with the Arsenal first-team squad for the first time this summer, plenty of fanfare surrounding Saliba, but he is yet to make his competitive debut. The Gunners even explored another loan switch away from the Emirates towards the end of the summer transfer window.

“I’m fed up with the situation because, as you could see, we tried to find a way in the last few days [of the transfer window] to give him some football,” Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta said recently.

He added: “We certainly tried in the last few days of the transfer window to find the right club but we could not.

“We will review the situation in the next few weeks and sit down with him and see what is the best thing to do. But it will depend on him and other players’ situations as well.”

Marcos Alonso

Alonso’s performances at wing-back were central to Chelsea’s last title win in 2017, but the Spain international has become increasingly marginalised under Frank Lampard following his struggles when deployed in a back four.

With summer signing Ben Chilwell making a fast start to life at Stamford Bridge, opportunities for Alonso look limited going forward.

He has been linked with a reunion with Antonio Conte at Inter Milan, as part of the Italian manager’s determination to create an all-conquering FIFA 17 line-up.

READ: Marcos Alonso: The complete forward who happens to be a defender

Phil Jones

We’ve all chuckled at his facial expressions, but the decline of Jones has been underpinned by sadness.

More of a meme than a footballer these days, it seems like aeons ago that Sir Alex Ferguson said: “He could be our best ever player. I think Jones may be one of the best players we have ever had, no matter where we play him. He is going to be a phenomenal player.”

Despite his exclusion from United’s Premier League squad, you could envisage Jones doing a solid job elsewhere. Since Everton are no longer United’s recycling centre, there’s one destination that seems perfect for the defender – Sean Dyche is already punching in Jones’ digits as we speak.

Danny Rose

After explosively falling out with Jose Mourinho, Rose spent the second half of last season on loan at Newcastle.

Never one to hold a grudge, Mourinho excluded the erstwhile England defender from Tottenham’s 2020-21 Premier League squad. Not many people cross Jose and live to tell the tale.

With his contract due to expire at the end of the season, Rose needs to remind potential suitors of the quality that saw him become an important player for both club and country.


More from Planet Football

13 of Phil Jones’ most comical and calamitous moments at Man United

Comparing Dean Henderson’s 2019-20 stats to Man Utd’s David de Gea

‘Reminds me of Varane’ – Eight quotes on Arsenal prospect William Saliba

Can you name every player to score in the Champions League for Spurs?