The transfer window opens on Jan. 1 in the Premier League, Bundesliga and Ligue 1 (find out about the rest of Europe here), and clubs have been planning their business amid the midseason 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
ESPN writers have everything you need to know about the top teams’ hopes and delve into deals that might be in the cards. Who will come in? Who will depart?
Budget: The Kroenke family are prepared to back manager Mikel Arteta with significant funds in a bid to maintain Arsenal’s Premier League title challenge.
What does the team need? Gabriel Jesus is expected to be out for up to three months after undergoing surgery on a knee injury sustained while playing for Brazil at the World Cup. The 25-year-old might have been on an 11-game goal drought prior to the domestic break but he is absolutely vital in setting the tone for the Gunners with his pressing and movement. Arguably the drop in quality from Jesus to Eddie Nketiah is the biggest within the squad and therefore the club could consider a short-term attacking option. The club’s priorities for January were to recruit a winger/wide forward and a central midfielder but it remains to be seen how much they adapt as a result of losing Jesus.
Who are the major targets? Arsenal’s top target is Shakhtar Donetsk winger Mykhaylo Mudryk and the 21-year-old is open to the move but there is one big problem: the €100m asking price. There is confidence a lower fee can be negotiated but Shakhtar would also prefer to retain the winger until the end of the season, making a January move more difficult. ESPN revealed on Nov. 22 that the Gunners have revived their interest in Palmeiras midfielder Danilo after the Brazilian club indicated they were willing to accept around €24m, but Arsenal face competition from Ajax and Monaco for the 21-year-old. They have also tracked Leicester City’s Youri Tielemans, who is out of contract in the summer.
Who could be leaving? ESPN revealed on Nov. 17 that Cedric Soares was attracting interest from Fulham, Bayer Leverkusen and Villarreal. The defender is said to be more likely to leave on loan with option or obligation to move on a permanent deal but that is subject to further negotiations.
Any new contracts? The club certainly hope so. Talks are ongoing with Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and William Saliba over new long-term contracts. Reiss Nelson is also on record indicating he wants to sign a new deal. — James Olley
What does the team need? Director of football Txiki Begiristain has done a good job of refreshing Manchester City’s squad and there isn’t a pressing need ahead of the January transfer window. Begiristain and Pep Guardiola are likely to look at left-backs and midfielders next summer but there’s no reason to splash the club in January. If something incredible came up then it’s possible they would look at it but Guardiola certainly doesn’t expect to make any signings. Guardiola’s injury problems have also eased after Kyle Walker and Kalvin Phillips proved their fitness ahead of the World Cup.
Who are the major targets? Jude Bellingham is a long-term target but there is very little indication Borussia Dortmund would be open to doing a deal in January. Dortmund are likely to field plenty of offers in the summer and City will be in the queue along with Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea and Real Madrid.
Who could be leaving? Guardiola has got a relatively small group of senior players and he won’t want any of them to leave. Bernardo Silva was keen to go last summer but, like Bellingham, he won’t push to leave mid-season. Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona were interested in Silva in the summer and both are expected to look at the Portugal midfielder again at the end of the season.
Any new contracts? Ilkay Gundogan is the only first-team regular out of contract in June but he has already said he will wait until the summer before making a decision on his future. After that, Walker is out of contract in June 2024 and is next on the list of renewals. The England right-back will be 33 in May and might have to settle for a one or two-year deal if he wants to stay at the Etihad Stadium. — Rob Dawson
Budget: £50 million
What does the team need? Newcastle are at the beginning of a process of improving every department of manager Eddie Howe’s squad and that process — funded by the club’s Saudi Arabia-backed owners — is likely to be accelerated in January due to the team being in a surprise pursuit of Champions League qualification. Injury concerns over club-record signing Alexander Isak could prompt a move for a striker, with the Sweden forward having been sidelined with a hamstring injury since September and plans for a comeback during the World Cup shutdown not coming to fruition. But beyond Isak, Newcastle need depth in all areas.
Who are the major targets? James Maddison remains a leading target for Newcastle, with the Leicester and England midfielder rated highly by Howe. Leicester resisted a reported £45m move for the 26-year-old during the summer transfer window, but with Brendan Rodgers needing to raise funds before adding to his squad at the King Power Stadium, a deal could yet be done for Maddison in January.
Newcastle have also been linked with Benfica’s Enzo Fernandez, who won the Golden Boy award at the World Cup with Argentina, but manager Howe has played down a move for the player by saying that his likely fee would be a “bit lumpy.”
Who could be leaving? Newcastle have no plans to reduce the size of their squad in January due to the club pursuing a top-six finish and still in the hunt for the Champions League spots. Real Madrid have maintained an interest in midfielder Bruno Guimaraes, but with Newcastle under no financial pressure to offload any of their players, it is highly unlikely that the club would consider allowing one of their best to leave. If Newcastle receive offers for Matt Ritchie, Jonjo Shelvey and Paul Dummett, who are all out of contract in the summer, Howe would consider letting them leave if the depth of the squad is unaffected.
Any new contracts? Miguel Almiron could be rewarded with a new contract, having been Newcastle’s most impressive and consistent performer this season. The Paraguay international, a then-club record £21m signing from Atlanta United in January 2019, has 18 months remaining on his the contract he signed on arriving at St James’ Park. Goalkeeper Loris Karius is on a short-term deal which expires in January and it is expected that the club will extend his contract until the end of the season. — Mark Ogden
Budget: Not as much as Antonio Conte would like but Spurs will have some money to spend — owners ENIC committed to a £150m capital increase earlier in the year and it has not all been used.
What does the team need? Proven performers. Conte wants readymade players to keep Tottenham in the Champions League qualification places and, if possible, push even higher. A centre-back, a central midfielder and another wide forward to give Spurs more depth are possible areas of improvement.
Who are the major targets? Like Chelsea, Spurs also hold an interest in Josko Gvardiol but they would need a club-record fee to land the 20-year and could be priced out if it turns into a bidding war. Inter Milan’s Alessandro Bastoni is among several alternatives under consideration. Spurs are one of several clubs monitoring Leicester City midfielder James Maddison. Spurs have also scouted PSV Eindhoven forward Cody Gakpo.
Who could be leaving? Djed Spence has not enjoyed as much game time as expected and could leave the club on loan with a host of Premier League and Championship clubs interested in the 22-year-old. Japhet Tanganga and Bryan Gil have also been marginalised under Conte and could seek moves elsewhere.
Any new contracts? Harry Kane’s contract expires in 2024 and although there is a desire on Tottenham’s side to extend, nothing has been agreed with the 29-year-old. There is also an outstanding situation with Conte himself, who is out of contract at the end of the season, although the club hold an option to extend by a further year. Conte might be stalling until seeing the level to which Spurs are prepared to back him in the transfer market (again) before committing his future to the club. — Olley
What does the team need? Liverpool need to bolster their midfield due to age and injury beginning to catch up with the players who have delivered so much success to the club in recent years. There is also an issue over Jurgen Klopp’s attacking options due to Luis Diaz suffering a setback in his recovery from a knee injury. With Diaz out and Sadio Mane having left Anfield for Bayern Munich during the summer, there is a concern that further injuries could leave Liverpool short up front as they approach the business end of the season. But midfield is the key area with Jordan Henderson, Thiago Alcantara, Curtis Jones and Naby Keita all troubled by fitness problems this season.
Who are the major targets? Bellingham is Liverpool’s priority target to boost their midfield, but there is zero chance of a deal being done for the Borussia Dortmund and England player in January. Efforts are ongoing to sign the 19-year-old, but Bellingham will see out the season with the Bundesliga club.
Benfica’s Fernandez, who was a key figure in Argentina’s World Cup win, is another player of interest to Liverpool, but again, a January deal is highly unlikely, especially with Benfica still in the Champions League and with no need to offload the 21-year-old for financial reasons.
Who could be leaving? Liverpool have an option to sign Brazil midfielder Arthur Melo for €37.5m when his season-long loan deal from Juventus expires in June, but the player’s time at Anfield has been so badly disrupted by injury — he has made just one substitute appearance for the first team — that he could return to Italy in January if it is decided that he won’t contribute to Jurgen Klopp’s team for the remainder of the season.
Five senior players are entering the final six months of their contracts at the club — Roberto Firmino, Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, James Milner and Adrian — but the fitness problems in midfield and attack make it unlikely that any of the outfield players will leave. Goalkeeper Adrian could go, with Caoimhin Kelleher having established himself as No. 2 behind Alisson Becker, but don’t expect too many departures.
Any new contracts? Of all of the players entering the final six months of their contracts, Firmino is most likely to be offered a new deal, but it is by no means certain that the 31-year-old will be retained by the club. Having signed Darwin Nunez for €100m from Benfica last summer, Liverpool have already replaced Firmino in the long term, yet with seven goals in 13 Premier League games this season, the Brazil international has shown that he remains an effective player for Klopp’s team. — Ogden
Rob Dawson breaks down why Erik ten Hag wants Manchester United to explore their options in the January transfer window after Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure.
Budget: Less than £30m.
What does the team need in January? Erik ten Hag needs a striker following the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo, but he isn’t guaranteed to get one. Money is tight in the wake of the Covid pandemic and a larger-than-expected summer spend while the club have also ruled out a short-term stopgap like Odion Ighalo.
Ten Hag is currently relying on Anthony Martial staying fit — he’s had three separate injuries already this season — and Jadon Sancho rediscovering something like his best form, otherwise United will be short of goals during the second half of the campaign. There are other issues that need to be addressed like signing another right-back and extra midfielder but they can wait until the summer.
Who are the major targets? United are looking at targets like Benfica striker Goncalo Ramos, PSV Eindhoven forward Cody Gakpo and Atletico Madrid’s Joao Felix, but there is an acceptance at Old Trafford that deals might not be possible in January. Ramos and Gakpo have both seen their stock soar during the World Cup and even though Atletico are open to offers for Felix, they still value the 23-year-old at around €100m.
Who could be leaving?Aaron Wan-Bissaka has only made one appearance all season and has been overtaken as first-choice right-back by Diogo Dalot. Injury problems haven’t helped his chances but after returning to full fitness, there has been interest from Wolves, West Ham and former club Crystal Palace.
Axel Tuanzebe is still recovering from injury but United are open to loan offers for Brandon Williams, who is fit again.
Any new contracts coming? Dalot, Marcus Rashford, Luke Shaw and Fred have all had one-year extensions triggered, which will keep them at Old Trafford until 2024. Dalot, Rashford and Shaw are all in talks about new long-term contracts while negotiations have also started with David De Gea. — Dawson
Budget: Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital are intent on another sizable investment in January as they overhaul the squad.
What does the team need? Chelsea look short of options at centre-forward following Armando Broja’s season-ending knee injury, leaving them with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Kai Havertz as options to lead the attack. Given Chelsea are in a transitional period overhauling the squad under new ownership, there are a number of areas that have been identified but whether top targets can be secured in January remains to be seen. They will need at least one central midfielder if Jorginho and N’Golo Kante do not stay next season, while a winger, a centre-back and cover at right-back would be preferable.
Who are the major targets? A deal to sign RB Leipzig’s Christopher Nkunku is expected to be completed soon, although he will not move to Stamford Bridge until next summer. They are also talking to Leipzig about a deal for centre-back Gvardiol. Chelsea were keen on AC Milan winger Rafael Leao in the summer and failed with a verbal offer made just three days before the end of the window, but could look to capitalise on contract talks between the winger and the Serie A club to move for him again. The Blues also failed with a late move for Southampton midfielder Romeo Lavia but continue to track the 18-year-old. They are also interested in Borussia Dortmund pair Youssoufa Moukoko and Jude Bellingham. Boehly was seduced by the idea of signing Cristiano Ronaldo in the summer, only for Thomas Tuchel to strongly oppose the move. It is unclear at this stage whether Tuchel’s departure and Ronaldo’s status as a free agent having left Manchester United will change anything.
Who could be leaving? Christian Pulisic is open to leaving Chelsea. Manchester United were approached over a possible move, while Newcastle United have expressed an interest. Winger Hakim Ziyech might also look to kick-start his club career after a fine World Cup with Morocco; AC Milan and Ajax are among the clubs monitoring his situation.
Any new contracts? Jorginho and Kante are free to talk to overseas clubs directly from Jan. 1 as they enter the final six months of their contracts. Time is of the essence to get the midfield pair to agree to new terms. Meanwhile, the club are also talking to Mason Mount about a long-term deal but no agreement is imminent. — Olley
Gab Marcotti and Julien Laurens discuss a possible move to Aston Villa for Atletico Madrid forward Joao Felix.
Elsewhere in Europe
Budget: Zero. “Dreaming is free; signing footballers is not,” sporting director Jordi Cruyff said this month. After selling club assets to spend €150m in the summer, Barcelona‘s budget is back to zero. Players will have to leave for others to come in.
What does the team need? Despite making eight signings last summer, Barca coach Xavi Hernandez was still left wanting more when the summer window closed. Ideally, he would have liked another attacking midfielder to complement what he already has available. Barca’s sporting committee, meanwhile, continue to scour the market for a defensive midfielder to replace Sergio Busquets, who is out of contract in June, and a right-back. They settled on Hector Bellerin in August to compete with Sergi Roberto, allowing Sergino Dest to go to AC Milan on loan, but would like to sign someone new for the long term.
Who are the major targets? Real Sociedad‘s Martin Zubimendi is Xavi’s pick to come in for Busquets, but his €60m release clause is forcing the club to explore other alternatives such as Chelsea’s Kante, who could arrive on a free transfer next summer. In a dream world, Manchester City‘s Bernardo Silva remains a target as well, but that is not something that will happen in January. Finally, the lack of available top-level right-backs means Barca will probably have to stick with Bellerin and Roberto — with Jules Kounde also an option there — until the end of the season.
Who could be leaving? Memphis Depay is Xavi’s sixth-choice forward and is out of contract in the summer. Barca are open to moving the Dutchman on, but to get him off the wage bill they may have to let him leave for free. Midfielder Franck Kessie, signed from Milan for free in the summer, is also attracting interest due to his lack of minutes at Camp Nou, as is Bellerin, but neither will be allowed to leave unless it’s possible to bring in replacements — which looks unlikely. Keep an eye on captain Busquets, too. He is likely to stay until the summer before heading to Major League Soccer, but some reports suggest he could go in January.
Any new contracts? Busquets will be left to make his own decision on his future and looks set to call time on his 17 years at Barca, but the club would be open to handing him a one-year extension given the financial difficulties in replacing him and the fact he remains a starter under Xavi. Young left-back Alejandro Balde, whose agent is Jorge Mendes, is also in line for a new deal following his breakthrough this season. Elsewhere, Ousmane Dembele is moving into the final 18 months of his contract, while Marcos Alonso, Roberto, Bellerin and Memphis’ deals all expire in June. Sources have told ESPN that Alonso will renew, Roberto’s situation is performance-dependent and Bellerin and Memphis are likely to leave. — Sam Marsden and Moises Llorens
Budget: Madrid’s latest accounts — released in September — showed a cash balance of €425m, and they offset last summer’s €80m move for Aurelien Tchouameni by offloading Casemiro to Man United for €70m, so there’s money available if required.
What does the team need? The €60m agreement to sign 16-year-old Brazilian sensation Endrick from Palmeiras in 2024 hasn’t dealt with the short-term need for cover for striker Karim Benzema. The Ballon d’Or winner, 35, has struggled with injuries this season — starting just half of Madrid’s LaLiga games, and being sent home from the World Cup after suffering an injury in training with France — and while Rodrygo Goes is a useful alternative, a more conventional backup No. 9 would be welcome.
Who are the major targets? Despite that need for a forward — and Kylian Mbappe’s desire to leave PSG — Madrid aren’t expected to move for one in January. Coach Carlo Ancelotti has repeatedly dismissed doing any business during this window. “We aren’t interested in the January market,” he said in October. “This is the squad until the end of the season.”
Who could be leaving? No players are expected to leave, either. Those players whose contracts are due to expire in the summer (more on them in a moment) will wait to move until then. The club would be keen on a departure for Eden Hazard if an acceptable offer arrived, but that’s unlikely, with the player himself having called a January move “impossible” with his family settled in Madrid.
Any new contracts? Luka Modric, Toni Kroos, Marco Asensio, Nacho, Dani Ceballos and Mariano Diaz all have contracts which expire in June 2023. The club would like Modric and Kroos to continue for another year, but Kroos hasn’t yet decided whether to carry on, or retire. Asensio and Nacho are both awaiting renewal offers from the club, with Asensio having drastically increased his chances of a new deal with impressive performances in recent months. Ceballos hasn’t received a contract offer, while Mariano will leave after five seasons on the bench at the Bernabeu. — Alex Kirkland and Rodri Faez
Budget: While still one of the financially healthiest clubs in the world, Bayern had to withdraw a considerable amount from their cash reserves over the past few years to balance the budget and make major signings like €77m defender Matthijs de Ligt. If absolutely necessary, Bayern would still be able to fund a transfer worth around €50m or €60m during January.
What does the team need? Primarily a goalkeeper who can replace Manuel Neuer during the second half of the season, as Bayern’s captain recently broke his leg in a skiing accident. Elsewhere, Lucas Hernandez tore his ACL playing for France at the World Cup, though Bayern do not intend to sign another defender. It should also be noted that the club’s head of scouting, Pirmin Schwegler, is on the verge of leaving to become Hoffenheim’s sporting director.
Who are the major targets? Bayern could try to talk AS Monaco into ending Alexander Nubel’s loan move prematurely, so they can bring back the goalkeeper to replace Neuer. The club have also considered approaching Borussia Monchengladbach to sign Yann Sommer, whose contract runs out at the end of the season, and other potential targets are PSG’s Keylor Navas and Croatia’s World Cup star Dominik Livakovic.
Who could be leaving? As of right now, no one is expected to leave in January. Bayern’s squad is not particularly deep and most players are getting considerable playing time.
Any new contracts? Bayern have started talks with Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting over a new deal. The 33-year-old is the only player whose contract ends in 2023 and, since he is one of the squad members on the lowest salary, the Cameroon international might try to negotiate a more lucrative deal as he is approaching the final stretch of his career. In case Choupo-Moting does not agree to an extension, Bayern could turn their attention to Monchengladbach’s Marcus Thuram who is also out of contract next summer. — Constantin Eckner
Luis Echegaray is impressed by Jude Bellingham’s performance in the England round of 16 win against Senegal.
Budget: Dortmund ran out of money to spend during the summer window and Manuel Akanji’s €17m move to Manchester City at the last minute did not generate as much as initially expected. The club possess a modest cash reserve to sign new players, but they may only be able to use what is generated from outgoings.
What does the team need? Dortmund lack quality in almost every area, which makes it tough for sporting director Sebastian Kehl to address shortcomings. An experienced, yet mobile holding midfielder could help stabilize the back line. Meanwhile, Sebastien Haller, who has had testicular cancer since the summer, could return to training at the beginning of January, which would make the search for another striker unnecessary.
Who are the major targets? Dortmund are targeting full-backs, possibly on both sides. Gladbach’s Ramy Bensebaini and Leeds’ Cody Drameh are names that have been rumored, with the former hotly tipped for either a January or summer move.
Who could be leaving? Julian Brandt has been linked with a move, though the midfielder was one of the club’s better players before the World Cup break. Nico Schulz, who has faced domestic violence allegations, could be offloaded, with Lazio rumored as a potential destination. Dortmund may be ready to loan Schulz out and even pay a portion of his €5m yearly salary. Full-back Raphael Guerreiro also continues to be the subject of rumors about his departure as his contract ends in June.
Any new contracts? Dortmund are trying to sign Youssoufa Moukoko to a new contract, since the 18-year-old’s current one runs out at the end of the season, but so far he has rejected an improved offer which would earn him €5m per year. Veterans Marco Reus and Mats Hummels also possess contracts that end in 2023, though Dortmund are not in a rush to sign extensions with their two captains. Hummels is expected to receive a one-year offer with an option for another year, but Dortmund want both to accept reduced salaries. — Eckner
Gab Marcotti believes it makes sense for Lionel Messi to extend his PSG contract, but feels there is no need to rush a new deal.
Budget: Between €50m-€80m if needed.
What does the team need? President Nasser Al-Khelaifi revealed earlier this month that PSG don’t need to sign any new players in January. However, the club still need some reinforcements. From what we saw in the first half of the season, especially with the injuries to Presnel Kimpembe and Danilo Perreira, PSG need another centre-back. They also need a proper holding midfielder, which is a position they have been short of for a while now. And finally, a “target man” striker could be a good addition in a squad which doesn’t have this type of player.
Who are the major targets? PSG chased Inter Milan defender Milan Skriniar all the summer but could return now he has less than six months left on his contract. Though they could also wait to land him as a free agent in the summer. In midfield, they like Bellingham and Fernandez but neither of them will come in January. Up front, PSG have been offered Atletico’s Joao Felix by agent Jorge Mendes and could consider a deal but only on loan for now. He is not really the profile they want either.
Who could be leaving? Players who haven’t played much this season, like Pablo Sarabia, could make room for potential new signings. Goalkeeper Keylor Navas, who has a big salary but hardly plays, could also be let go with Sergio Rico moving from third-choice to back-up to Gianluigi Donnarumma. Star striker Mbappe’s future is very much back in the spotlight — as sources said he wants to push for an exit — but his options are limited with Real Madrid cooling their interest.
Any new contracts? Now that the World Cup is out of the way and he is a world champion, Lionel Messi’s future will be discussed and PSG are set to offer the 35-year-old a new two-year deal. Midfielder Marco Verratti should sign his new deal until 2026 in January, while defender Marquinhos, who is out of contract in 2024, could soon agree an extension until 2027. — Julien Laurens
Budget: There will be little to no money available for the Turin giants as ramifications from their recent financial investigation continue to reverberate. Key figures such as president Andrea Agnelli, vice president Pavel Nedved and managing director Maurizio Arrivabene all stepped down recently as Juventus were put under preliminary investigation by the Turin Public Prosecutor’s Office into fraudulent accounting and alleged hidden payments to players.
What does the team need? A full-back seems to be a key signing for coach Massimiliano Allegri given his recent switch to 3-5-2. On the right side there remains only 34-year-old Juan Cuadrado to perform the role adeptly, so depth is needed.
Who are the major targets? Wilfried Stephane Singo is a name that won’t go away in terms of the right-back role at Juventus. The highly rated Torino star has a contract which expires at the end of the season, but Juve have hope they land a cut-price deal for the 21-year-old. Rick Karsdorp could be seen as a cheaper option, with the Dutchman falling out of favour at Roma, and a loan deal could be viable.
Who could be leaving? Any number of players could be on their way out, with €70m-striker Dusan Vlahovic and United States international midfielder Weston McKennie the two names being bandied about the most. Both have been strongly linked with moves to the Premier League as Juve look to raise some cash to reinvest in the team.
Any new contracts? There could be both good and bad news here. The bad news is that, after some stellar performances for Argentina at the World Cup, winger Angel Di Maria likely won’t extend his deal with the club and will seek a move when it expires at the end of the season. On the positive end of things, 19-year-old winger Samuel Iling-Junior has already penned a new deal — he’s made appearances for the first team after starring at youth level and looks to be a key part of the future at the club. — David Cartlidge
Budget: With an impressive first half of the season under their belt, Serie A leaders Napoli have money to spend as they look to maintain their domestic and European pursuit of silverware. Defender Kalidou Koulibaly joined Chelsea for €40m in the summer, so there is still money around from that deal.
What does the team need? More attacking options would be very welcome. Napoli were prolific before the break for the World Cup and a lot of their key men didn’t take part in Qatar, but some quality in depth could be added with another winger or midfielder. If Napoli are to maintain momentum in both Serie A and the Champions League then it’s exactly what they need.
Who are the major targets? Two names have been linked most: Adama Traore of Wolves and Nicolo Zaniolo at Roma. Both would be good fits for Napoli’s high octane, counterattacking style of play but Zaniolo is likely to be the more expensive option, so Napoli may opt for the Spanish winger to cut costs.
Who could be leaving? Certainly not the two main stars. Victor Osimhen and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia have been linked with big moves, but both set to stay and have no desire to depart quite yet. The summer is a more likely time to exit but for now both players are locked in on Napoli’s ambitions this season. It’s more likely that Mexico winger Hirving Lozano could be leaving though, with the 27-year-old having a number of suitors.
Any new contracts? There is a desire to get Osimhen and Kvaratskhelia to commit, despite interest from just about every major club in Europe. It’s hard not to see them leaving when a big-money offer comes their way in the summer, but for now Napoli hold out hope on contract extensions with both and with talks are already planned. — Cartlidge.