Fox Sports Asia – HONG KONG, FOX Sports Asia football editor Gabriel Tan picks six of the biggest names in Asian football that look ready for a move to Europe this summer.
With all the major European seasons now having their summer breaks, the excitement shifts off the field as the biggest clubs reinforce ahead of a new campaign, splashing the cash on some of the biggest names in world football.
However, Asia has often proven to be a great location for clubs looking for a bargain and willing to put their faith in some outstanding prospects that are brimming with potential but yet to prove themselves on the bigger stage.
ALIREZA BEIRANVAND (IRAN)
After his heroics at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, where he famously denied Cristiano Ronaldo from the penalty spot, Iran goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand was tipped to make the move to Europe but opted to stay at Persepolis, where he has since helped them reach the final of the AFC Champions League and emerge champions of the most recent Persian Gulf Pro League campaign.
Now that there is little more he can achieve at Persepolis, especially with the club already eliminated from this year’s ACL, the time could be nigh for the 1.94-metre custodian to take the next challenge of his career.
Ali Daei, Mehdi Mahdavikia, Ali Karimi and Andranik Teymourian are just some of the famous Iranian names to have gone on to star in Europe, but Beiranvand has the chance to be the first in his position to really fly the flag for his country – perhaps even in Serie A where he would be reacquainted with Ronaldo.