Football | Transfer Window Review Part 1

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Time’s running out folks. This year we won’t see Harry Redknapp leaning out of a car window – at least not representing a Premier League team – or Peter Odemwingie doing donuts round a mid-table, big spending club’s car park, but we will see – as we always do – late deals, drama, the window slamming shut, Jim White claiming “That’s it, ladies and gentleman, the window is shut!”, only to wake up the next morning to see another five or six deals have been completed.

So, with a month or less – depending on when you’re reading this – until not a single penny can be spent by a Premier League club – for a few months at least – we sieve through the good and the bad business done by the first ten teams in the top flight, starting with the side who may get fourth or fifth, and will create magic memories throughout the next ten month thanks to Arsenal Fan TV…

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ARSENAL

The Window So Far…
A pretty dull window so far from Arsenal in truth. Alexandre Lacazette will boost them and add pace to a forward line that looked to lack exactly that with Olivier Giroud leading the line. You’d have to expect Lacazette to hit 15 goals minimum next season with the service from Mesut Ozil and possibly Alexis Sanchez.

Work To Be Done?...
They’ll certainly look to wrap up the Thomas Lemar deal from Monaco by the end of August and although the talk about Ozil’s contract seems to have died down a touch, the German still hasn’t signed. Sanchez’s will he or won’t he saga continues to rumble on, and although Gunners fans claim the club will give him what he wants, what they seem to conveniently forget is that the Chile forward wants Champions League football. Good luck offering him that at the Emirates.

Prediction?...
4th– Chelsea and Liverpool have Champions League football to contend with, as do Spurs, who, with the Wembley hoodoo hanging over them, may well miss out on the top four next term. No doubt come May 2018 there will be the usual debate of Wenger in or Wenger out and another big name left with just a year on his contract. Why always Arsenal?


AFC BOURNEMOUTH

The Window So Far…
Pretty decent actually. Bournemouth have spent money on quality rather than quantity, boosting their defence and attack. In goal, Asmir Begovic has come in and the ex-Chelsea and Stoke man will definitely be an upgrade on Artur Boruc, who wasn’t getting any younger. As well as Begovic, there are two returnees to the Dorset side, with Nathan Ake joining from Chelsea following an encouraging loan last term and Jermain Defoe, who was last with the Cherries on loan in the 2000-01 campaign – when team-mate Ake was still in nappies.

Work To Be Done?...
We think another midfielder would be a good move for Eddie Howe. After all, with the likes of Harry Arter and Andrew Surman, there’s not too much spark there. Jack Wilshere is back at Arsenal and Howe will be hoping Lewis Cook can step up to the mark this campaign following an impressive showing in captaining England U20s to World Cup glory this summer.

Prediction?...
13th – That’ll be another decent season for Bournemouth in truth. There’s not really much else to say, to be honest.


BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION

The Window So Far…
Brighton
have raided Germany for a lot of their signings and have lost David Stockdale to Birmingham City this summer, replacing the goalkeeper with Matt Ryan from Valencia for £5m. They haven’t spent too much money and to us, their four strikers in Sam Baldock, Glenn Murray, Izzy Brown and Tomer Hemed have very little Premier League experience, which will surely be a concern for Chris Hughton with just 30 days of the window remaining.

Work To Be Done?...
Definitely, Hughton will surely be looking to add some Premier League know-how to his squad and sharpish. Defensively they are also unproven at top flight level. They’ve been linked with former Sunderland and West Brom forward Steven Sessegnon, but at 33, his best days are behind him, and those best days were hardly sparkling ones, let’s be honest.

Prediction?...
20th – That lack of experience will catch them out, unfortunately. Hughton has previous in getting teams into the Premier League before getting sacked just prior to relegation. He’ll hope it won’t happen this time around, but for us, the Seagulls will be holding up the rest. If he does get the boot, he’ll go to another Championship club and the cycle will start again for him.


BURNLEY

The Window So Far…
It’s been a quiet window so far for Sean Dyche, who did a lot of shrewd business in the January 2017 transfer window in acquiring the likes of Robbie Brady and Jeff Hendrick. This time around he’s added Stoke pair Phil Bardsley and Jon Walters, who are more solid than spectacular, which probably sums Burnley up.

Work To Be Done?...
It all depends if West Ham sign Andre Gray – who they are reportedly after. If so, Dyche will have to go out and nab a nippy goal poacher as the likes of Sam Vokes isn’t someone who likes to play on the shoulder of the last man and stretch defences. Perhaps another winger is also needed after George Boyd opted to move to Sheffield Wednesday. They are still to replace Michael Keane and do have the majority of his £25m fee to play with.

Prediction?...
15th - This is a difficult shout as we know what second-season-syndrome is like. However, they should have enough, their side is pretty experienced too, at this level.


CHELSEA

The Window So Far…
It’s been decent for Antonio Conte, who has strengthened at the back with the capture of Antonio Rudiger and up top in the form of Alvaro Morata from Real Madrid. The Diego Costa soap opera will continue for a little while yet and Conte will be eager to get that sorted as soon as possible to free up some more funds. £5m has been generated from the sale of Nathaniel Chalobah to Watford. Is there a team that make as much money on fringe players as Chelsea? If so, who?

Work To Be Done?...
Chelsea have been linked to one or two recently, including Renato Sanches from Bayern Munich but we don’t imagine Conte will be losing any sleep if he ends up going with what he’s got – apart from Costa, who was last seen riding a jet-ski in South America with his Labrador, as bonkers as that sounds. European football again will mean everyone in his squad will get minutes under their belts in 2017-18.

Prediction?...
2nd – Close but no cigar, for us. Whilst on paper Morata looks a decent signing, it remains to be seen how he’ll handle the Premier League. Rudiger looks to be a fine capture from Roma and an upgrade on Kurt Zouma, who’s joined Stoke, but with the increase in games, we think they’ll fall short, but only just, which may well cost Conte his job, as bizarre as that sounds, but then again, we know what Roman’s like.


CRYSTAL PALACE

The Window So Far…
A new manager for Palace in Frank de Boer after what seemed like months of waiting for Big Sam’s permanent successor. De Boer’s gone Dutch in the window by signing one of his old players from Ajax in Jairo Riedewald, whilst Ruben Loftus-Cheek has joined on loan from Chelsea.

Work To Be Done?...
There’s still talk of Mahmadou Sakho returning from Liverpool, and you’d expect de Boer to dip his toes in the market to boost a frontline, which, apart from Christian Benteke, lacks any real cutting edge. One or two will probably come in.

Prediction?...
14th – It’s been a summer of change at Palace and after a horrific spell at Inter Milan, de Boer will be hoping to rebuild his reputation at Selhurst Park. The jury is still out on him, it could go either way but we feel they have enough quality in the squad to stay in the Premier League again.


EVERTON

The Window So Far...
Busy, busy busy. Ronald Koeman seems to have been on his phone constantly this summer with a hoard of new signings being wheeled into Goodison Park. Wayne Rooney’s returned, Koeman’s countryman Davey Klassen has signed, as have England duo Michael Keane and Jordan Pickford. Gylfi Sigurdsson also looks set to join £5m Spanish signing Sandro in also joining the Toffees – for ten times the price Everton signed the striker for!

Work To Be Done?...
Aside from the interest in Sigurdsson, Everton look set for a decent season again under Koeman, who has also said that Ross Barkley will depart the club this summer. Where he ends up is anyone’s guess, but his sale should bring in another £30m (ish) to push through that deal for Gylfi.

Prediction?...
7th – It’s so difficult to break into that top four, but finishing sixth will be another pretty fine finish for the Toffees, with a young(ish) team that will only get better.


HUDDERSFIELD TOWN

The Window So Far…
Fresh from promotion to the Premier League for the first time in their history, David Wagner’s got to work on attempting to ensure they will have a second season in the top flight come this time next year. They’ve bolstered their forward line with the signings of Laurent Depoitre and Steve Mounie, whilst Tom Ince has made the move from Derby as well. Aaron Mooy has returned on a permanent deal and Jonas Lossl has joined on loan, taking the number one shirt ahead of this season.

Work To Be Done?...
We doubt it. A lot of work was done early in the window to get deals over the line and on paper at least, they’ve spent well on decent options.

Prediction?...
17th – This may well be an incredibly big shout, but we’re backing the Terriers to survive in the Premier League. It won’t be easy, but promoted teams have a pretty decent record in surviving in the top flight, however, there’s no Sunderland this time around, which could mean it’s touch and go for survival.


LEICESTER CITY

The Window So Far…
It’s been okay business from Leicester this summer, with Craig Shakespeare identifying that Wes Morgan and Robert Huth aren’t getting any younger and bringing in Harry Maguire from Hull City. Vicente Iborra has also joined, meaning the Foxes finally have someone who will go some way to finally replacing N’Golo Kante. Ex-Sevilla skipper Iborra is a fine player. Eldin Jakupovic has been brought in to warm the bench.

Work To Be Done?...
Not really, it’s more outgoings than incomings this next month, with Riyad Mahrez likely to be flogged, whilst there are still question marks as to whether the likes of Ahmed Musa, Islam Slimani and Demarai Gray will be playing their football at the King Power next term. Gray taking the number seven shirt, however, suggests he will be a regular part of the team in a crucial World Cup year for the winger, who will be aiming to be on the plane with England – should they get to Russia.

Prediction?...
11th – A much better campaign is surely on the cards for Leicester under Shakey, who steadied the ship after he replaced Claudio Ranieri last season. Jamie Vardy will hope to have a better season than last as he, like Gray, will be hoping for that plane ticket to Russia next summer.


 

So that’s it for Part 1, remember to check back on Monday to see our thoughts, predictions and much more on the likes of Manchester United, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur, and, of course, Stoke City


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