Michel Bastos, Hazard, Sakho & more - the Ligue 1 stars who could be leaving their clubs this summer

The European transfer season is in full swing, and Goal.com works its way through the main Ligue 1 stars who could be on the move between now and the end of August.

With the European season for 2010-11 now over, the attention has inevitably shifted over to the summer transfer market. From now until the window closes on August 31, every club on the continent will be working around the clock in an attempt to strengthen their squads for 2011-12.

As always, Goal.com will provide the very best transfer news, exclusives and analysis that you can find on the web. In order to prepare you for the weeks ahead, we will be working our way through every major European league and presenting a list of the big-name players who could leave, with their respective probabilities of departing.

Our series will cover the Dutch Eredivisie, English Premier League, French Ligue 1, German Bundesliga, Italian Serie A, and Spanish La Liga.

This particular piece focuses on the developments in France, where there are likely to be a number of high profile players to depart, as the league enters a period of regeneration. Champions Lille will have to fight hard to keep hold of their top players, with a number of clubs from the big three leagues hovering over the likes of Gervinho and Eden Hazard.

Meanwhile, Lyon and Marseille both suffered relatively disappointing campaigns and will look to rebuild their squads, offloading players considered to be surplus to requirements.

But it is not just the big guns who will lose some star names, and below we examine the cream of the Ligue 1 crop liable to move on over the course of the summer months.


Read more on Michel Bastos
Age: 27

Club: Lyon

Intl caps: 11 (2 goals) for Brazil

Position: Midfielder

Value: €15m

10-11 apps: 28 (5 goals)

Interested clubs: Juventus, Inter
Per cent chance of leaving: 90%

At Lyon, Michel Bastos has made a name for himself around the world. During a successful stint with Lille, he proved that he could mix with the best in Ligue 1, but it has only been since his switch to the Rhone club that he has proven his ability to match up against the best in the world. He represented Brazil at left-back during last summer’s World Cup, but appeared fatigued for much of 2010-11, particularly towards the end of the season.

This has not been enough to deter Italian giants Inter and Juventus from vying for his signature, however. The Bianconeri have reportedly followed the 27-year-old for several months, but recent developments hint that it will be the Milanese side who are in pole position. But, there could be a twist: the player does not yet possess an EU passport, and though acquiring one would appear a formality for a man who has lived in the region for five years, the Serie A sides want to ensure it is in his possession before making a decisive swoop. He will command a fee of €15m.


Read more on Cissokho
Age: 23

Club: Lyon

Intl caps: 1 (0 goals) for France

Position: Left-back

Value: €15m

10-11 apps: 29 (1 goals)

Interested clubs: Liverpool
Per cent chance of leaving: 50%

Another Lyon player to have endured a difficult campaign, the left-back has been strongly linked with a move to England and Italy in recent times, and on the evidence of recent performances, OL might do well to cash in on the defender, who is at something of a low ebb at present. Cissokho has been the target of ire from the fans this season, one of whom famously suggested that he would be better suited to Arles-Avignon – the side who finished dead last in Ligue 1 by 15 points.

Liverpool have recently expressed an interest in the powerful 23-year-old, who enjoyed a stratospheric rise in fortunes during a one-year stint in Portugal, but he indicated towards the end of May that he does not believe he will leave the Stade Gerland this summer. AC Milan were again said to be keen, but their capture of Taye Taiwo means there is no prospect of a move to the Rossoneri, who famously rejected him due to a teeth problem two summers ago. Having seemed to suffer from OL’s slump in form, a boost in confidence should bring the defender back to his former self, and only a big bid would entice his club to sell.


Read more on Gameiro
Age: 24

Club: Lorient

Intl caps: 4 (1 goals) for France

Position: Striker

Value: €12m

10-11 apps: 36 (22 goals)

Interested: Lyon, L'OM, PSG, Sevilla, V'rreal, Valencia
Per cent chance of leaving: 80%

Given that the Lorient striker was on the brink of a move to Valencia in the January window, it would be a huge surprise if he was to remain in Brittany over the course of the summer, and he has already spoken of his desire to step up a level. As well as the big French clubs – Lyon, Marseille and PSG – his name has been associated with Villarreal, Sevilla and los Che in Spain, and it is the latter which the player would most wish to join, though he has also indicated a liking for les Parisiens.

Lorient, however, won’t give up their star man without a fight and are notoriously shrewd negotiators in the transfer market. They have demanded €12m for the striker, whose first goal for France on Monday was a well-timed reminder of his undoubted talents. Having been one of Ligue 1’s top players for the last two years, a move seems very likely, though he could chose to wind his contract down and leave on a free transfer next summer.

Read more on Gervinho
Age: 24

Club: Lille

Intl caps: 19 (5 goals) for Cote d'Ivoire

Position: Winger

Value: €17m

10-11 apps: 35 (15 goals)

Interested clubs: Arsenal, Liverpool, Man City
Per cent chance of leaving: 70%

Perhaps the star of the show in Ligue 1 this season, the Ivorian winger racked up impressive numbers of both assists and goals. While several of Lille’s title-winning squad have announced that they are in no hurry to leave the northern club, Gervinho is set to shun Champions League football with the champions for a move to England, where Arsenal and Manchester City are amongst the sides reported to have expressed an interest.

Should les Dogues receive a suitable offer, they will not stand in the way of the African leaving the club, and the player is expected to fetch up to €17m, despite only having one year left on his contract. The Gunners will be particularly keen if they lose Samir Nasri, while Gervinho would add extra flair to the Citizens’ already star-studded attacking corps.


Read more on Lucho
Age: 30

Club: Marseille

Intl caps: 43 (7 goals) for Argentina

Position: Playmaker

Value: €13m

10-11 apps: 36 (8 goals)

Interested clubs: Malaga
Per cent chance of leaving: 90%

Marseille’s record signing, the Argentine playmaker is widely believed to be on his way from the Stade Velodrome this summer after a disappointing campaign with les Phoceens. After playing a crucial role in OM’s title bid during 2009-10, he failed to produce his best form in any prolonged burst this campaign, leaving spectators underwhelmed.

Nouveau-riche Malaga have been widely reported to hold a candle for the No.10, though Jean-Claude Dassier, the president of the Provence club, has indicated this week that he does not want to lose the €18 million he spent on capturing the South American, which may price him out of the market a little. OM have publicly declared the bidding to start at €13m, though it’s likely he will leave for €10m.


Read more on Hazard
Age: 20

Club: Lille

Intl caps: 20 (0 goals) for Belgium

Position: Winger

Value: €20-30m

10-11 apps: 38 (7 goals)

Interested clubs: M.City, Arsenal, Juve, Inter, Bayern
Per cent chance of leaving: 10%

The most talked about player in France when it comes to the transfer market, the young Belgian has gained headlines since breaking into LOSC’s starting XI in 2007, and possesses bags of experience, despite being only 20-years-old. Played an important role in the club claiming its first title in half a century this season, enhancing an already burgeoning reputation.

Hazard is presently followed by a ‘Who’s Who’ of European football, with virtually every big club being linked to him at some stage over the course of the last year. The exciting talent remains unflustered, having previously indicated his willingness to remain with Lille for another year to experience the Champions League. Despite this, team-mate Aurelien Chedjou told Goal.com that his departure hangs in the balance and that there’s a “50-50” chance the prodigious attacker will depart.


Read more on France
Age: 23

Club: Sochaux

Intl caps: 1 (2 goals) for France

Position: Playmaker

Value: €12-15m

10-11 apps: 37 (3 goals)

Interested clubs: Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Dortmund
Per cent chance of leaving: 20%

Had largely flown under the radar of many clubs and fans before his exploits on Monday night with France. On his international debut, which lasted little more than 15 minutes as a substitute, he scored twice and set-up another to lead les Bleus to a 4-1 win over Ukraine. This came against the backdrop of a domestic season during which he led his Sochaux side to Europe with a record 17 assists, though his price tag of between €12-15m could be off-putting to clubs wary that he has produced only one great campaign.

Lyon, looking for more offensive muscle from their midfield after poor seasons from Yoann Gourcuff and Miralem Pjanic, have targeted the 23-year-old, but so too have champions Lille, whose power in the domestic transfer market should not be overlooked. Indeed, LOSC would appear a natural stepping stone for a player not yet used to the spotlight. Meanwhile, there is also the possibility of a move to Germany with Borussia Dortmund, though a potential lack of playing time may be an off-putting factor.


Read more on Sakho
Age: 21

Club: PSG

Intl caps: 4 (0 goals) for France

Position: Centre-back

Value: €20m

10-11 apps: 4 (0 goals)

Interested clubs: Barca, AC Milan, Arsenal, Man Utd
Per cent chance of leaving: 10%

Powerful, strong and dominant, Mamadou Sakho has all the raw attributes that a Premier League club could want in a centre-back, and it is certainly little surprise that there are so many big teams from across the Channel presently tailing the Paris Saint-Germain star. Enjoyed a brilliant season in Le Championnat, though his form thus far on the international scene has left some critics questioning his readiness to step up to the next level.

The recent takeover by Qatari investors has made any transfer away unlikely, as Sakho is the club’s signature player, having risen through the youth ranks to become one of the stars of the starting XI. PSG want him to become an emblem of the new regime, and having recently signed an improved contract, it looks very unlikely that he will be leaving the Parc des Princes this summer.


Read more on Toulalan
Age: 27

Club: Lyon

Intl caps: 36 (0 goals) for France

Position: Midfielder

Value: €15m

10-11 apps: 28 (0 goals)

Interested clubs: Malaga
Per cent chance of leaving: 30%

The last 12 months have been really testing for rugged midfielder Toulalan, who has seen his personal fortunes fall along with those of club side Lyon. Affected by France’s World Cup debacle more than most in the squad – he has since been overlooked by Laurent Blanc – he has struggled to reach his top level all season, not aided by several appearances in an alien central defensive berth.

Malaga have reportedly pinpointed this summer as the perfect time to tear the dogged Nantes-born player away from Ligue 1, and reports in the press would suggest that a €10m bid has been lodged with OL. Speaking to l’Equipe earlier this week, team-mate Anthony Reveillere said that he would find it “surprising” if ‘Toul’ departed the Rhone powerhouse, but the draw of a fresh start, as well as more money, could be hard to resist. Lyon would accept a bid of €15m.

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