If the summer transfer window was a recent barometer of trust, then when the winter version opens in January, huge fees will be spent in fits of panic by clubs desperate for immediate success.
It is plainly obvious that Barcelona for example, have vast sums of money to spend following Neymar's decision to swap Catalonia for Paris for a world record transfer fee.
The following figures that Barcelona then paid for Ousmane Dembele from Borussia Dortmund and the reputed fees banded around in the media suggesting what the Catalan outfit were prepared to pay for the recruitment of Liverpool's Phillipe Coutinho, ultimately turned into acts of desperation.
Top European clubs will not be deterred by the new level of transfer fees to bring in key targets, and in previous January windows, the calibre of player movement and spending power has been dramatically less than its summer counterpart.
Things could be about to change despite Champions League ineligibility for the top stars who could decide to move mid-season. Time will tell, but here we will look at four Serie A stars who could leave for new challenges in early 2018.
Barca prepared to move the earth for K2?
Assuming that Coutinho is not on the signing agenda for Barcelona until the summer, the Catalan giants could decide to strengthen in defence in January, with a move for Napoli's powerful central defender, Kalidou Koulibaly.
With title rivals Real Madrid going down at unfancied Girona, Barca are now as short as 2/9 for the title in 2017/18. It’s the sort of figure that is only appealing with a bookmaker offer replacing cash outlay and it means that Barcelona can already start to look at January and beyond.
At 26 years of age, the Senegalese defender is coming towards the peak of his career, and following three-and-a-half years in Serie A with Napoli, it could be the right time to move on. Rated at around the 60 million euros bracket, Koulibaly has also been under the watchful eye of Antonio Conte at Chelsea, who also remain strong contenders to battle for his signature.
A bidding war could ensue for one of the most sought-after defenders in Europe next January.
Serbian star heading for Premier League?
Lazio have several of their squad regularly linked with big-money moves to top European clubs, and following his move from Belgian side Genk for €9m in 2015, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is the next Lazio star who is under the watchful eye of the elite clubs.
Manchester United manager, Jose Mourinho is an apparent admirer of the 22-year-old Milinkovic-Savic. The links are obvious as the powerful midfield man would complement a United engine room already with Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic – both fine physical specimens, which is a key trait of Mourinho signings.
The Serbian international has performed at a very high level for Lazio so far this season and his stock as a player is rising rapidly. Local rivals, Manchester City have also reportedly sent scouts to monitor progress of Milinkovic-Savic, as the race intensifies to bring in one of the most coveted midfield players in Europe.
Suso heading out of Milan?
Despite recently signing a new improved contract at AC Milan, Spanish attacker Suso could still be heading for the exit door from the Milan giants.
The Rossoneri have yet to hit their best form this season, but Suso has been one of the most consistent performers so far in a Milan shirt. The former Liverpool man has suggested his loyalties to staying in Milan, but due to meeting Financial Fair Play regulations, the 23-year-old could be the odd man out.
Suso has long been linked with a return move to the Premier League and Tottenham Hotspur in particular. It is reported that the Spanish star has a €50m release clause in his new contract, and that type of fee would not dissuade Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino, who is a keen admirer.
Pellegri causing a stir in Genoa
Despite not turning 17 until next March, Genoa wonder-kid, Pietro Pellegri is already courting interest from some of the top clubs in Europe.
Having made just seven Serie A appearances, the 16-year-old has quickly bagged three goals in his fledgling career. Already rated in the €40m bracket, Italian under-19 international, Pellegri has had scouts flocking to witness his talents.
A January transfer to a leading European giant may not be the best imminent career move as the youngster needs to play competitive football to continue his development, but a permanent deal with a loan back agreement could be a possibility that would suit both parties.