Squad depth has become synonymous with modern-day football. 10 years ago, it was enough to have 18 first-team players on the books for a successful season. These days, a team in the Champions League or Europa League can expect to play at least 60 matches in a season, and hence it has become imperative for clubs to have two players in each position – and in some cases, even three.Bloated squads often lead to certain players having their game-time cut down due to fierce competition or managerial upheavals. There are some who are far too talented to be whiling their time away on the bench.On that note, we put together a list of 5 world-class players who are currently getting very little game-time at their respective clubs and should look for a move during the January transfer window.
#1 Fabio Coentrao: Real Madrid to AS Roma
Real Madrid left back Fabio Coentrao has played only one La Liga match this season. This, for a player who is rated very highly in his position, is a smack in the face and should precipitate his moving away in January.
Coentrao started 25 matches in the 2012/13 season, but has seen his game-time cut drastically owing to his managers preferring Marcelo in that position. While Coentrao is sometimes erratic with his positioning and has had disciplinary issues, there is no doubt that he is a better defender than Marcelo, who is better going forward, but can be caught out at the back.
With Ancelotti looking set on Marcelo for the rest of the season, Coentrao needs to move to another club so as not to rot away. The Portugese defender was linked to Manchester United, but the Red Devils settled on Southampton man Luke Shaw instead.
Roma would be a perfect destination for Coentrao, what with Ashley Cole having a wretched start to the season. A fee of €12 million could be enough to tempt Real Madrid into selling a back-up player.