Significant Market and Media Impact

9th December

It is very unlikely Dortmund part with Sancho in January – it’s more one for Summer. 

But the story isn’t going anywhere, and the transfer window will be an excuse to dig it up which may result in some decent media for holders. 

What we may see if anything is some kind of pre-agreement with the move to United going through next Summer but being signed in January. 

That would actually be great for holders – since he’ll get a long honeymoon period where there is anticipation of the move yet he won’t actually have to do anything to prove himself at United for some time.

Last January, I thought speculating on Sancho at £6-7 was fine – in anticipation of hype driving that price up towards Summer. The trick was not holding too long and getting caught up in that hype ourselves. 

With that price now having tanked back under £6 today but with all the same transfer rumours ahead there is a much stronger case for going for it again now.

There is unlikely to be a better time to bet on the move, and the odds of anything concrete being settled in January are low. That’s potentially a good long period of speculation ahead.

Form this season is mixed, but he can win performance at Dortmund. He’s been improving lately and I don’t think a mediocre season will put buyers off too much. If he dips off again it might be a problem but we can deal with that with vigilant scouting.

We’re also at the stage where under £6 is not a totally outrageous price for him even if he did stay at Dortmund – so it’s not overwhelmingly dependant on the move happening anymore.

This is how I like to trade Sancho – there are good times to hold him and bad times to hold him. There is no need to be a fan or a hater – just time it right. This is the right time to go for it if you are going to in my opinion. 

But it is far from an essential trade – if this goes really well you may double money over the next 6 months but there are other options, many of which can do that in a much shorter time frame.

If however you think you might hate to see Sancho rise and get that fear of missing out it may just be better to sign him up whilst he’s on the downer.

This sorry saga may get a happy ending as Eriksen has a reasonable chance of getting a decent January move. 

He could have been a top performance player at Inter, and showed that in his numbers when he was on the pitch. But it became clear that Conte just does not like him and if you aren’t on the pitch – you ain’t going to win.

Some decent links – Arsenal, PSG, Manchester United (though every player is linked to Manchester United for click bait purposes I don’t always take that too seriously). 

But a move is credible and he’s just 28 years old and in his prime. Remains a strong performance player so if he landed anywhere good like PSG that could be a big deal.

Arsenal is ok – and brings Spurs versus Arsenal media potential. And in his usual position he could challenge from Arsenal too. Manchester United a dream ticket obviously.

With negativity so high and him available for £1 and under I think this is a solid bet. Even if he doesn’t move, he’ll likely get his chance again next Summer. And there are some very enticing positive outcomes to this story.

Most traders will be adverse to things like this – until events force their hand anyway. But this is the sort of trade that is going to deliver the biggest (and possibly swiftest) gains in the months ahead – where we are scooping up an out of favour but high potential player at a rock bottom price.

This could be a big one. An EPL move has long been anticipated and come close before. But he has been loyal to Juventus – not that this loyalty has been particularly repaid he still struggles for minutes.

26 years old now and he can’t wait any longer if he wants to realise his potential. So that makes me feel like a move is likely.

The Pogba swap deal is the latest. Not impossible. But he gets links to just about every big EPL club going including Liverpool and Chelsea too.

The current £1.69 to £1.94 price is just far too negative – an over reaction to short term difficulty.

Even now in the games he gets he is very close to winning for Juventus and could do so any week.

And a realistic price ceiling in the EPL? It’s high. He has the potential to justify being one of the top 5 most expensive FI players. 

If he gets a decent club and regular minutes he can pull in the performance and he’d be a big media draw too. 

And if he ends up staying at Juventus… even as a rotation player for this money it’s still value. 


Dembele’s fall from grace is astonishing and to me this feels like a massive market overreaction to a missed transfer and being out of favour at Lyon.

To be well under £1 now from over £3+ in May with none of the reasons that made him potentially that valuable having changed… it’s pretty crazy.

He’s still very highly regarded and could very easily drop on a move to a big club, possibly the EPL or even La Liga.

And the price is now so low that pretty much wherever he ends up playing you are going to be getting IPD value at minimum if he maintains anything close to his usual level. Even if it’s a relatively mediocre club. 

A bit of a head scratcher that this is even possible – a cheap bid here could be a very, very shrewd pick up. It can go extremely well if the right move happens either in January or by Summer – and even if it doesn’t the scenarios that make him worth less than 75p or so are just… very unlikely.

Struggling recently due to poor Lyon and form and an arguably overblown perception that he’ll struggle at Barcelona when he has to play alongside Messi. 

Performance wise he has improved in the last couple of games as covered in Scouting.

As for Barcelona – who knows what will happen there. Messi may even not be there. I am not too stressed about this because Depay is not entirely penalty reliant – he is a strong player and can succeed in a range of positions across the front 3.

It may not even be Barcelona – Juventus are linked too. And Barcelona are not exactly cash rich – nor do they even have a President until right near the end of the window – making any big new signings difficult.

Depay has been particularly hard hit in the last month – and that price fall takes the headache out of all this will he or won’t he stuff.

For £1.57 to £1.79 at present – it’s really hard to see any credible outcome where he cannot justify at least that. I’d be optimistic on this from here, or indeed anything under £2.50 to £3.

Another down and out. But is it all that bad?

We are talking about a player who not so long ago was a very, very big name star. And he’s still just 28. He has seriously struggled under Zidane but he’s not had many chances and he’s not the only struggler at Real this season.

In performance terms – given a full game – he is really not far away from being an FI contender. I rate him if he was given a regular berth at a decent club.

The move looks likely for January – and he seems to want out. 

Arsenal are the biggest rumour which would be a decent move. At 28 years old and just 51p on a bid or thereabouts though – holders don’t really need to be picky about the destination club.

But if it was EPL you can see him being £1 pretty easily, maybe even more. Potentially huge gains in picking up these out of favour but strong potential players precisely because most are too afraid to do it.

Martinez is a fine goalscorer – no doubt about that. He is however an awful performance player and is always likely to be. 

So to really justify a big price tag – he’s going to need an EPL move to try to add significant media to his IPD appeal.

This is why I thought his £3.50+ valuation in hope of a Real Madrid move was all kinds of crazy. Holding that is just a bet you cannot win unless you come out early. A question of when, not if, that price will crash. Lunatics.

However, with his new slimmed down price tag it becomes a much easier decision. For £1.12 to £1.45 – he can pull more than his weight in IPD at Inter.

So you’ve now got a situation where you can hold him and rotate him for IPD in the window – and if you hit a nice transfer for him like Manchester City either now or in Summer – you’ve got your jackpot. And it costs you very little since he already justifies this price. 


Fat chance of this happening in January. 

But. Summer is more feasible. And he really isn’t bad as a hold at Leicester for this money.

I was never keen on this at £4-5 that was just way too much – and it’s exactly the sort of wild speculation on highly priced transfers that has been heavily punished.

But price changes everything. 

Anything under £2 for Maddison is a clear steal. He’s 23. Justifies that value already at Leicester. Can improve and get a big move. 

Over negativity like this can be taken advantage of.

This is one of those “shot to nothing” transfer trades that I like.

There is no real stress on timing the window here. If he doesn’t move – he’s great value at Barcelona. If he comes to the EPL – potential jackpot. 

I’d be happy to take him anyway on recent Barcelona form. So to have a big potential transfer boost too is fantastic.

The main issue for him is whether he can stay fit. Not something we can do a great deal about but I think for £1 or so the odds are firmly in the holders favour here.

A high potential, low stress pick. 

Major Transfers

Significant Market Impact, possible Media Impact.

10th December

Big links for the 20 year old Hungarian midfielder. Bayern. RB Leipzig. Real Madrid even. Arsenal. Plenty of options. Bayern look the best one for traders.

Difficult to call although a move to sister club RB Leipzig would seem easiest to achieve. Seems quite likely from the gossip that something will happen with this one in January.

No complaints with his performance suitability. Strong threat and creativity. The doubt is that lots of players can show great stuff in a weak league and it might decline. But my starting position would be pretty optimistic he’s quality. 3.5 out of 5 stars at a decent club if he maintains something close to his current level.

The worry would be price – he’s a fairly well publicised transfer and has plenty of social media FI advocates. So he hasn’t dipped in the same way others have. The £2 mark is solid in True Value terms. But is it the best value, and does he look pricey compared to others?

Could have some mileage in this yet to take up to the window but I might be a bit wary of taking it too far unless the Bayern link strengthened significantly. The worry would be it would take too long for him to make an impact at a new club – similar to say Olmo.

19 year old Argentina wonderkid Almada is another rumour that has been around for a couple of windows now. 

Links to Manchester United in particular really heated up this Summer, as did his price, but the deal did not get over the line.

It hasn’t gone away though and the rumours are back in force, with Manchester United still in pole position.

He is not one of these no hoper kids who are bigged up in traditional top 100 wonderkids articles but have no suitability for FI. He’s got real FI potential. 

He’s got the goals, the assists too. But it’s his overall contribution to the game that can really push him up there, he’s a busy boy and racks up the dribbles, crosses, interceptions, recoveries. Could be good and I peg him at a 3.5 out of 5 stars potential. 

That may be underselling him – if he really becomes a star he can do better but my potential ratings are over a realistic 3 year time frame rather than over an entire career.

He’s very young so he may be a bit far away from the first team and selling on a large hype spike may be the play. If he got over £2 I might consider selling him particualrly if he didn’t look like getting any pitch time. 

Though if the market recovered you could probably push that a bit higher towards £2.50. 

But, longer term he does have real potential so if he went somewhere he could start regularly he may be worth holding longer.

At around £1 now… the odds of him getting a move eventually are high and it should be a good one, even if it’s next Summer not January. So I think he’s a solid pick up and not overly risky right now.

Another long running transfer saga with him often linked to big clubs including both Manchester clubs, Real Madrid, PSG and even lately Liverpool.

This Summer he looked very likely to make a move but it never happened, perhaps due to covid unsettling things.

At a good club he does have performance potential, despite mediocre displays for Lazio. He’s not too far away from wins at all – given a more possession dominant club  he could easily become an FI force.

With the on and off nature of this transfer plenty of us have been led up the garden path on this – which probably explains why the price is absolute rock bottom. Nobody likes going back to a player that burned them.

But it is not really that bleak. He’s only 25 and can be an occasional winner at Lazio so if the move didn’t happen from here it is not a disaster. 

A cheap bid on this could be a shrewd pickup.

Another one of those that is extremely unpopular but it only takes one good rumour and he can reach £1.25. to £1.50 or so fairly easily – potentially doubling a holders money.

This move nearly happened in the Summer but Udinese set a very high asking price of around £37m. Apparently, they have dropped that and it may open up a January move.

Leeds were actually the biggest rumour which might not sound all that appealing. But it’s still an EPL move and Leeds definitely punch above their weight when it comes to performance scoring.

Marry that up with De Paul who is an FI scoring freak who can win even at Udinese – Leeds only really improve that most likely. 

Other options include Inter or Juventus – both good moves – and are probably more intuitive to most traders as a “good” move rather than Leeds. Leeds is a decent move but not everyone will know that straight away.

The beauty of this trade is that it doesn’t really matter. Picking him up under £2 or even closer to £1.50 – he’s worth that just where he is. And he’s at Udinese – he’s only going to be going somewhere better than that if he moves.

A decent hold that may benefit from a big move either in January or Summer – not much to dislike about that. In a nervy window this can be the sort of transfer trade many can be comfortable with.

I like Belotti for his solid IPD output alone and with him having fallen to under 85p now this is a very easy decision to make.

He’s still smashing them in this season for Torino and regular IPD returns are not going to be an issue as long as he is on the field.

He very frequently gets transfer links, Tottenham the latest EPL rumour. He also gets Napoli or Juventus and I would not be surprised to see other big clubs in the mix later on.

Plenty of Italy minutes too and could find himself as the lead striker especially if Immobile was ever injured.

A move may be more likely next Summer but I see him as a great hold in the here and now for Torino and Italy – worth refreshing for IPD every so often. And if that transfer link drops? Could be a big boost starting from such a low price. 

A really great pick up – the ideal sort of transfer trade in this nervy market in my opinion because he already more than justifies the price paid and you don’t really need anything special to happen.

And if something special does happen… a doubling in his price is not difficult to acheive.

Perhaps surprising he did not move in Summer, he looked all set to go to Arsenal and was £3 just a few months ago – now available somewhere between £1.02 and £1.35 – incredible.

He hasn’t shown his best at Lyon this season, struggling for full games which further fuels the speculation of him being on his way out. 

He is a decent FI player though and will have the baselines to make goals count, at least in a full game anyway. It is actually surprising he hasn’t scored more than 2 this season with all the chances he has had.

I’d back him at a decent club, and for this money, an Arsenal move is positive. He can be a contender there.

If that move does get resurrected, it would be incredible if he stayed this low a price. And if it didn’t… he’d be fine for this at Lyon and likely gets his tranfer rumours again later.

A solid and low risk option with a big potential upside.

24 year old Valencia forward Maxi Gomez has long been ear marked for a big transfer, maybe now is his time as Valencia are broke.

Current rumour is Arsenal – but in the past he’s never been short of links. Manchester City. Tottenham. Everton. Even Liverpool.

Could happen – and he is currently languishing at a rock bottom 40p to 68p. A fee he can justify for IPD alone most of the time, although in the last 6 he looks bang out of form. In September and October he was scoring freely, though. 

Could be another shrewd pick up if he drops on the right move and if getting him for 40-50p… he’s only 24 and it’s very hard for his price to go much lower than that. 

If he moves to Arsenal is he going over £1 at absolute minimum? Very likely. And if he doesn’t, no big deal.

FI Relevant

Potential Market Impact

10th December

24 year old central midfielder currently at Gladbach.

Something of a forgotten man these days – minutes have been limited this season. 

Strong links including to Bayern, Chelsea, and both Manchester clubs. 

For a central midfielder, he’s ok but not great ,a fairly classic low threat high baseline central midfielder. Should have some decent baselines, particularly at a high possession dominant club, and he does get forward to shoot occasionally with some success. 

We can maybe expect a goal every 7-10 games reasonably and they have a chance of being big scores when they go in. 3 out of 5 stars probably. 

For the price you are paying that is solid stuff – 39p to 60p is pretty crazy and you can easily see the right link pushing him to £1 and a bit beyond.

A big move feels near enough inevitable for 18 year old Gravenberch. he’s been getting hyped by traders since he was 16 – and that was too early.

But we’re now reaching a point where he is an Ajax regular and he is at a stage where a big move could happen in the next year or so.  Or at least, the credible links for one, which can be enough on FI.

As an aside he scored a cracker in the Europa recently. In the empty stadium you can really hear the power it’s quite fun to watch. Not exactly critical but then these highlight video moments do help with sentiment.

You can take a pick from big clubs that are linked. Juventus. Barcelona. Manchester United. And he is that sort of standard.

Also, in earlier career there were question marks about his scoring rate but not anymore – he’s really improved and developed with more senior Ajax minutes. 

A great long term selection. The move may come in Summer rather than now but I see now harm at all in a patient hold of this. 

Milik, 26 year old Napoli striker has been frozen out of the side lately so it’s no surprise to see the transfer rumours kicking up. January is likely or Napoli will lose him for free at the end of the season.

Tottenham, Everton. Inter. Even Fiorentina although that may be a bit unambitious for him. He’s been a very strong goalscorer in the past in the Eredivise and Serie A.

Awful performance player. IPD player only, really. But for 32p to 63p? The right move could easily make that look very cheap, very quickly. 

23 year old Mainz striker Mateta is making a big impact in the Bundesliga this season. 

He scored a hatrick in November and given he is playing at a side rock bottom of the league his threat, and finishing, is superb.

A solid young player for his 56p to 71p. Not bad for IPD even now at Mainz, and if the Tottenham rumour gained legs he could find himself much closer to £1 quite easily.

Not expecting huge things performance wise at Mainz… but he’s not too far away in his own numbers and he might make an impact at a bigger club. 

The transfer alone and IPD is enough to carry his current price though – holders can worry about needing performance wins later. 

Chukwueze is one of those sleeper transfers that has been on the table for a few windows now, but has never quite happened.

But it’s still there, and it’s probably more credible than it ever has been now he’s developed a bit. 

21 years old now so he’s not a kid anymore. Liverpool is a long standing link. Also gets Manchester United. Chelsea. All those EPL rumours are gaining traction again in recent weeks.

May happen in January, I’d probably say more like Summer. But at 61p to 80p it’s a solid pick up and I wouldn’t mind being patient with it if needs be.


Unfavourable Moves

Potential Negative Market Impact

10th December

This is going to be an extended review as it’s a good example of how transfer trading can be done very badly.

It’s a long running and miserable transfer saga – one that if anything sums up the wreckless/inexperienced trading that has been rife on FI in the past.

But this kind of behaviour will probably become much less common after this market shock which will force more maturity in future. Once traders know they can lose as well as win they get more cautious.

I’ve been saying here for years now that as long as he looked like moving out of the EPL his price was just doomed

This was always very likely – and the worst thing was that at the high price he was at for much of this uncertain period – even if he stayed you wouldn’t get a big profit anyway.

If he did leave – you have a massive downside risk of a price collapse from £8+ (which was a much bigger price way back when). Without regular media once out of the EPL spotlight, he would be left with performance alone. 

And that is quite ropey. He has had periods where he has racked up his FI wins – but usually as the result of penalties. Penalty reliant players are very brittle. If they lose them – they lose their major weapon. 

If Pogba therefore goes to Juventus – is he taking penalties off Ronaldo? Doubtful.

So in that scenario, his price was always going to be £3-4 at best, even if the market hadn’t dropped in 2020. That is assuming he still gets a bit of media even out of the EPL.

So a big drop is clearly foreseeable at any point in recent years. And your upside, should you have won your gamble and he stayed at United as a key player, was pretty modest. You are paying a high price anyway and you need that perfect outcome to justify the existing price.

This is awful trading. 

We will all have bets that do not go our way. We can’t control a collapse in form and aren’t always able to predict if a player will go out of favour with the coach etc. 

But these trades where the balance of risk/reward is so clearly against us? These must be avoided and can be avoided.

What was particularly remarkable is that he had one drop already in 2019 but people still did not learn the lesson and went back to him in March 2020. This is lazy trading – giving players too much credit for past achievement rather than looking at what they are offering us in future.

I don’t think this would happen now, or in a future market that has stabilised and recovered. I suspect we’ll see a savvier and more measured trader base after this rough year. Rough seas make for good sailors as they say.

But that is all a history lesson. We can re-evaluate things now in very different conditions. And I *almost* put him in the “Blockbusters” section rather than on the negative move list.

We’re at a borderline price point now at just over £3 where that is a value he can probably justify if playing week in week out for Juventus. 

And on his way out, he may rack up some significant media. 

Price is everything in this game – when we’re starting from £3 we are under far less pressure than we were at £8. 

We could feasibly hold at Juventus as a £3 player. We don’t need to massively fear the out of EPL move anymore. 

He’ll still be a major factor at Euro 2020. Short term media will abound whilst he makes the switch. He’ll probably still get some media always, just not as much as in the EPL. 

He can win performance at Juventus, maybe a 3 out of 5 stars or 3.5 out of 5 stars player if it goes well for him. 

So overall, I would call this a blockbuster and a positive move. Certainly a vastly superior trade to what it used to be. 

What tipped me into putting this on the negative transfer list though is my instinct on trader behaviour. Rationally, we can say “sure, I could hold Pogba at £3 at Juventus” and that’s not wrong.

But lots of traders will be in this just to ride the short term media. In the main, people hate out of EPL moves. 

And we will probably see that come through on the market.

For that reason, if going for this, I would not be too greedy. If he gets a further rise as the media wins racked up, I’d probably dip out.

If he then drops once the move is done, then a £2.50 Pogba at Juventus would look very attractive. 

But we want to sidestep that risk of traders pulling out when the move has gone through. And that means we will have to exit well before a decision is made.

And, if I am wrong and traders do for whatever reason get enthusiastic about Pogba at Juventus and it feels like I sold too early. Do I care that much? Probably not – there is no shortage of good ways to spend my money at the moment.

This is however a high profile trade, likely to be at the whim of pumpers and dumpers. I would not be making this a priority really – I think there are many other trades on this page that offer that kind of “shot to nothing” where I will benefit from a big move but don’t have to sweat too much if it doesn’t happen.

In a nervy market – I think those are the best ones to go for. They are still bold and can return massive profits, but they aren’t likely to get us burned either when you are starting at a low price for a high quality player with years ahead of them.