The winter transfer window does not open until January 1, but clubs across Europe are busy planning and tentative negotiations will have begun in preparation.
Our friends at Football Whispers have scoured the European newspapers and websites to bring you the latest transfer gossip and news from the continent.
Valencia may be forced to sell Manchester United transfer target Carlos Soler if the club fails to qualify for the Champions League. The 20-year-old has been linked with a move to Old Trafford this week and, although he signed a new contract with Los Che in May, the club needs to raise €45m (£40m). Soler has been ever-present for Valencia this season, scoring four times to help his side to second place behind Barcelona. (Marca)
Croatia midfielder Ivan Rakitic will not be content with dropping down the pecking order if long-term Barcelona transfer target Philippe Coutinho arrives from Liverpool. Barca are expected to revive their interest in the Brazilian in January but speculation surrounding his potential arrival does not sit well with Rakitic, who believes he has done more than enough to cement his place in the first-team. (Diario Gol)
Lionel Messi has signed a new contract with Barcelona, according to La Liga president Javier Tebas. The future of the Argentine superstar has been the subject of much speculation, with his current deal at the Camp Nou set to expire in June. “Contracts are official when they are signed and not when it is announced that they have been signed,” Tebas said. “Messi has signed with Barcelona, if I have not been lied to, he has signed.” (Marca)
The current head coach situation with the Italy national team is becoming one of the most interesting stories on the continent. Giampiero Ventura has yet to resign after becoming the first man in 60 years to fail to guide the Azzurri to the World. However, the Italian media believes his dismissal is a foregone conclusion. Roberto Mancini has emerged as the front-runner for the job. The former Inter and Manchester City boss is contracted to Russian side Zenit St Petersburg until 2020 but would walk away if the Italy job was available. (Mediaset Premium)
But Fabio Grosso, who memorably scored the winning penalty in the 2006 World Cup final, is a surprise candidate for the role. The former Juventus youth team coach has impressed with Bari this season and will be discussed when the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) hold a meeting on Wednesday. (Corriere dello Sport)
Highlights of Italy against Sweden in the World Cup Qualifier play-off second leg
Finally, while Chelsea boss Antonio Conte returning to lead Italy seems unlikely, Carlo Ancelotti remains in the running. The three-time Champions League-winning coach is determined to make the right move after being sacked by Bayern Munich earlier this season and wants to see how the FIGC will be restructured before considering any proposal. Ancelotti remains interested in returning to the Premier League but realises there may not be any appealing vacancies. (Calciomercato)
However, Conte is interested in becoming the new Paris Saint-Germain manager next season. There have been reports current boss Unai Emery will not remain in his post beyond this season, which has opened the door for the Italian. Conte’s future at Chelsea has also been the subject of hot debate, with reports of a breakdown in his relationship with owner Roman Abramovich. Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino is PSG’s first choice but the club realises that prising the Argentine away from Spurs will be difficult. (Le10Sport)
Chelsea are willing to sell playmaker Willian to fund a move for Paris Saint-Germain winger Lucas Moura. Willian has not been a guaranteed starter under Conte this season and the Italian is reportedly willing to let him leave in favour of the pacey Lucas, who is free to leave the Parc des Princes in January. (Le10Sport)
Manchester City target Yacine Adli says he would prefer a move to Barcelona or Bayern Munich if he leaves PSG. (L’Equipe)
Borussia Dortmund head coach Peter Bosz has drawn up a transfer wishlist of three players, including Liverpool midfielder and Juventus transfer target Emre Can, Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt and Ajax’s goalkeeper Andre Onana. After some shaky defensive displays, Bosz is keen to raid his old club for reinforcements while he also wants a robust presence to add steel to his midfield and believes Can is the ideal candidate. (Sport BILD)