Arsenal should sign Douglas Costa in January

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The close of the summer transfer window is now a distant memory with the winter period quickly approaching, and teams across Europe will be planning how best to reinforce their respective squads.

January is a notoriously difficult time to complete a bargain but, if clubs are willing to put in the groundwork, there could be some decent deals to be had when the time arrives.

Here are nine players from outside the Premier League who ought to be under consideration fro England's elite...

9. Simon Kjaer

With only one goal in 38 appearances, the Danish centre-half isn't the most prolific defender.

However in just his first season with current club Lille, they kept 21 clean sheets and conceded only 26 goals in the entire season. It was the best defensive record in Europe's top five leagues last season.

Whilst the team may have failed to live up to their stalwart defence this term, Kjaer is still showing signs of being a quality central defender, and bagged his fist goal of the season in only their third game.

Still unproven to many of the bigger clubs, Kjaer has spent several years gaining experience from around Europe. Starting at FC Midtjylland he has had stints in both Germany and Italy before joining the French league and is a fully fledged Denmark international. 

Clubs in need of defensive additions, such as Newcastle or potentially Tottenham, could do with looking into the Dane who is still only 25. 

8. Alex Sandro

One of many Brazilians to don this list, Alex Sandro has been preforming at a high level for a while now. Playing for Portuguese club Porto since 2011 he has gone on to make 106 appearances in all competitions as well as having a couple of call ups to the national team.

A pacy left-back is something many Premier League teams would love to add to their squad and they don't come much more consistent than this Brazilian. Whilst a small injury sidelined him for three games, Porto have lost none of the 11 that Sandro has participated in across all competitions.

Still only 23 the energetic full back would be fine addition to almost every Premier League team, including the likes of Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool. 

7. Breel Donald Embolo

By far the youngest player on this list it won't surprise many of you to know that this spirited 17-year-old is already attracting the interest of Europeans most prestigious clubs. 

Having only 25 appearances for FC Basel he has already bagged himself 10 goals and three assists, and has begun to assert himself in the Swiss champions' first team.

Recently causing terror for the Liverpool back four in the Champions League, this 6" striker can bully centre-halves with his wonderfully direct play. 

Rumors are abound about the Swiss under 21 international joining the likes of Chelsea and Juventus. For someone to swoop in early and win his signature it could be a major coup.

He still has to develop and so a deal which would see him stay at Basel for at least another season before being loaned out to a more competitive league could see the starlet become a world beater.  

6. Ricardo Rodriguez

The second left-back to appear on this list shows just how in demand quality full backs are in world football at the moment. The Vfl Wolfsburg defender showed up in great fashion for Switzerland at the World Cup and put on show the talents he has been exploiting in the Bundesliga for two years now. 

Pacy and an excellent crosser many Premier League clubs would be interested in this player purely for his defensive qualities, however what would please most managers is his willingness and seemingly effective offensive flare.

With only 11 appearances so far this season he has already notched four goals and one assist, incredible numbers for a full-back. 

Having 93 appearances for Wolfsburg so far the 22-year-old has already attracted interest across Europe. The Premier League could do with a player of his quality, and Manchester United are among those linked.

5. Douglas Costa

The second Brazilian on our list is the versatile Douglas Costa. Curently plying his trade in Ukraine with Shakhtar Donetsk, the attacking midfielder has notched 35 goals and 36 assists in just over 180 appearances for the club. 

Being a wantaway due to the strife in Ukraine, Costa could be a bargain buy under the radar. Many Premier League teams could do with adding some pace and skill to their attack and the likes of Arsenal have been long time admirers. 

Still only 24 years of age and having already made his international debut, Costa could make a meteoric rise the likes of Robinho never could. 

4. Anderson Talisca

Without doubt the hottest prospect in Europe over the last few months, Anderson Talisca has gone from zero to hero since his £3 million move from Bahia to Benfica.

Able to play as both an attacking midfielder or a fully fledged striker the young Brazilian has taken nine goals from his first 15 appearances in Portugal. 

He has already been called up to the Brazil national team and, with seemingly every club with any clout across Europe enquiring about the 20-year-old, Talisca has set a very promising career path for himself. 

3. Andre Lacazette

Lyon have a few gems in their squad but none shine quite like Andre Lacazette. The 5"9' striker has pace to burn and can finish like a veteran, even at the young age of 23.

The Frenchman has 50 goals and 31 assists in 166 appearances for club and country, including a mind-boggling 11 goals in 13 Ligue 1 appearances this season. 

Lacazette has been on everyone's radar for a while now but it would be in his best interests to take a step rather than a leap.

The Frenchman could do wonders for Newcastle's attack or indeed any of the mid-table teams in the Premier League, but it would be shrewd to cut his teeth at a club where he is guaranteed first team play rather than jump into a top club which could see him fade away like Roberto Soldado. 

2. Seydou Doumbia

Ivorian by birth and currently plying his trade at one of Russia's top clubs, Seydou Doumbia has gained a reputation of a very dangerous forward. With 82 goals and 36 assists in 124 appearances he is not only prolific but is a team player. 

Recently becoming the bogeyman of the blue half of Manchester, Doumbia has proven his quality in the Champions League, scoring five goals past the Citizens in only four games. 

Powerful and viciously pacy, Doumbia would make the best of a move to the Premier League, and at 26 he is close to reaching his peak. Tottenham and Liverpool could do with someone of his quality as his impact on the league could be similar to Wilfried Bony. 

1. Roberto Firmino

The last of a plethora of Brazilian wizards on this list, Roberto Firmino has made a name for himself in the Bundesliga side Hoffenheim.

Still only 23 the attacking midfielder, who can play out wide as well as down the middle, has 43 goals and 29 assists in a measly 128 appearances, making him one of the most effective midfielders in Europe's top five leagues.

Much like his Brazilian counterpart Talisca, Firmino has been called up to the Brazil squad by current coach Dunga and looks to make an impact after their failed World Cup attempt.

With five goals and five assists in his 11 appearances so far this season Firmino is now being courted by Europe's finest, with Arsenal seemingly leading the race.

Effective in the German league since 2011, Firmino should be looking to step up to the Premier League where he could walk into almost every team. 

Honorable mentions

Antonio Rüdiger

Iker Muniain

Paco Alcacer

Manchester City
Manchester United
Premier League

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