No summer transfer window is complete without a host of world-class players being linked with Premier League clubs.
Teams at both ends of the table are in need of major reinforcements during the off-season and are already gearing up to do battle for some of the biggest stars on the planet.
Here five top class players who could grace Premier League pitches on the opening day of the 2016-17 season.
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The perennial tale of every off-season transfer period in recent memory, Arsenal are in the market for a world-class striker to complete a potentially title-winning squad.
This time around, Bayern Munich ace Robert Lewandowski is reportedly atop the Gunners’ list of summer transfer targets should he be tempted to leave the Bundesliga.
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While Arsene Wenger could guarantee the Poland international superstar status at the Emirates, Manchester City hold the alluring drawcard of Pep Guardiola in the dugout – not to mention mountains of cash.
Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Javier Pastore is reportedly growing fed up of warming the bench at the Parc des Princes and could be tempted to try his luck in the Premier League.
The 26-year-old has made ten league starts under PSG manager Laurent Blanc in a largely disappointing campaign marred by injuries and poor form.
However, there is no shortage of admirers queuing up to broker a deal for the unsettled Argentine, with Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City reportedly weighing up summer bids.
Atletico Madrid hitman Antoine Griezmann has been linked with multiple Premier League clubs in recent transfer windows – but this summer could be the last.
Chelsea are desperate to return to the top end of the Premier League table next season and sure to prioritise landing a striker to spearhead their title charge.
The Guardian reports the Blues are prepared to shell out £79 million to pry the Frenchman away from the Champions League finalists, while Manchester United are also said to be in the hunt for his signature.
Real Madrid playmaker James Rodriguez has played second fiddle to Isco under Zinedine Zidane for much of this season, casting doubt over his future at the Santiago Bernabeu.
The Colombian arrived from AS Monaco for approximately £71 million less than two years ago and is already seemingly considered surplus to requirements.
Rodriguez’s agent, Jorge Mendes, is believed to be lining up a move to Manchester United in the off-season should his client continue to be frozen out of first-team plans at Real.
Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette is one of the most highly rated players in world football at present with 73 goals in all competitions to his name in the last three seasons.
The Mail and London Evening Standard claim the likes of Barcelona, West Ham and Tottenham are keen on signing the prolific France international, but the Ligue 1 club has made no indication it is willing to sell up.
The matter may not be entirely in Lyon’s control though. Paris Saint-Germain’s ever-tightening stranglehold on the French top-flight coupled with a bottom-place finish in their Champions League group could encourage Lacazette to contribute his talents elsewhere.
Who are you hoping to watch light up the Premier League next season? Give YOUR opinion in the comment box below!
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