Once every four years, the summer transfer window becomes something of an afterthought and with just over 48 hours to go until the World Cup kicks off, while the transfer rumours might provide an interesting backdrop to the events unfolding in Brazil, the focus will be on what happens on the pitch rather than off it.
However, while Neymar and Messi might grab everyone’s attention, a lot of fans will focus on some of the players who have been linked with a move to the Premier League, as after reading everything about them we know have the chance to see them in action.
Manchester City fans, for example, will be keeping a close eye on the events in Group E. Samir Nasri might not have made the trip to Brazil, thus provoking an angry reaction by his girlfriend, but City’s target Eliaquim Mangala is likely to be a pivotal figure for Didier Deschamps’ team.
The Porto defender has emerged as one of the best centre-backs in Europe and has been on the Premier League champions’ radar for a while, as Manuel Pellegrini looks to bolster his defensive options.
City’s defensive fragility was exposed in more than one occasion last season, as neither Martin Demichelis nor Matjia Nastasic and Joleon Lescott looked entirely comfortable alongside Vincent Kompany and Mangala, who has won the Portuguese league twice since joining from Standard Liege in 2011, would represent the perfet partner with Kompany, as he offers excellent tactical awareness coupled with a strong physical approach.
The 23-year-old, who played 42 times for Porto in all competitions last season, has reportedly claimed that he’d rather prefer to play for Chelsea or Manchester United, but whether either club would be prepared to meet Porto’s £35m remains to be seen.
Vote on Mangala’s performances and plenty of other World Cup events on new mobile app OnePulse and get paid for your opinions! To earn some World Cup beer money simply hit thislink to the iTunes app store, download OnePulse and enter invite code DUUN2 on the opening screen (Over 18 only).