Maguire, Hazard deals headline Transfer Window for Premier League clubs; Arsenal, Tottenham make it count on deadline day
Stay here and they will end up building a statue in your honour. Go somewhere else and you will be just another player” – This is what Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp told then Merseyside darling Philippe Coutinho before he left for Barcelona in 2017. This famous warning from the German fits the bill perfectly for top-class Premier League players, who time and again use England’s top tier as a catapult for making it big in Spain, Italy or Germany.
This is one of the main factors why the Premier League summer transfer window shuts before any other country in Europe. The clubs want to start the season with their players’ heads firmly in guiding the team to glory and not thinking about having a potential gala time in Madrid or Barcelona.
Also Read: Arsenal, Tottenham make transfer deadline day count
For English clubs, the summer window has ended and they cannot capture the signature of their dream targets any further. Although, they can still lose players but that remains highly unlikely because of the clubs’ inability to bring in replacements. This means that the likes of Paul Pogba, Christian Eriksen, Leroy Sane and other unsettled stars will probably have to stay put with their current employers for at least one more season. They can sulk, protest or go AWOL, but ultimately will have to put their heads down and play or prepare themselves to be frozen out till their contracts last.
Manchester United’s profligacy has been well documented in the recent years and manager Ole Gunnar Solkajaer went a long way in eradicating that by breaking their bank to sign Leicester Harry Maguire and Crystal Palace’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka for 80 million and 50 million respectively. Both are young English talents who will save David de Gea’s net from bulging more often than not, in years to come.
Also Read: How the Premier League top six fared in the transfer window
Against popular beliefs, Arsenal too shelled out big bucks to acquire the services of highly rated forward Nicolas Pepe from French side Lille for a whopping 72 million. Pepe along with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette upfront form a fearsome trident for Unai Emery’s Gunners. They also did well to shore up their defence by getting in David Luiz for 7 million and Kieran Tierney for 25 million on the final day of the window.
Arsenal’s cross-town rivals and Champions League finalists Tottenham Hotspur finally bought a player after failing to sign anyone last term. Lyon’s French midfielder Tanguy Ndombele joined Mauricio Pochettino’s army for 65 million. But their best buy came at the last minute when Giovani Lo Celso joined the London side on loan from Real Betis. Not to forget much-talked about youngster Ryan Sessegnon who joined Spurs for 25 million.
How do you improve a team which won the title by scoring 98 points? Pep Guardiola found the answer in Atletico Madrid’s Rodri and Juventus’ Joao Cancelo. City parted ways with 63 million for Fernandinho’s long-term replacement Rodri and 30 million plus Danilo for Portugal’s attacking right back Cancelo.
As for Champions League winners Liverpool, they have assembled one of the most potent teams across Europe. They seem to be content with their existing squad which is evident from that the fact that they reportedly turned down the chance to bring back Coutinho. This window, Liverpool only invested on future by getting in 17-year-old Dutch defender Sepp van den Berg.
Europa League champions Chelsea have a two transfer window ban imposed upon them and that is the reason they couldn’t bring any big name in despite losing talisman Eden Hazard. Their only piece of business was converting Mateo Koavacic’s deal into a permanent one for 40 million. Not to forget the incoming of USA winger Christian Pulisic from Borussia Dortmund who had signed for the club in January.
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Newly promoted club Aston Villa have completely revamped their side as they have shelled out 130 million to land 12 players. Although their spending mirrors that of Queen Park Rangers, who spent a fortune a few years ago only to be relegated, however, Villa have been smart with money and have bought players who are more than capable of keeping them in the top flight. Defender Tyrone Mings and forward Trezequet headline their purchases this season.
The other Premier League club looking to buy everything and anything in their path are Everton. They did one of the best pieces of business this summer by getting in Juventus’ young forward Moise Kean for 27.5 million. Everton also managed to bring in World Cup winner and Monaco full back Djibril Sidibe on loan with an option to make the deal permanent next year. On the deadline day, they struck deal with Arsenal to bring in striker Alex Iwobi as well.
Leicester City’s capture of Belgian Youri Tielemens for 40 million could turn out to be an inspired one considering many European heavyweights were after his signature. Similar was the case for West Ham who lost star striker Marko Arnautovic to China but managed to prize away forward Sebastian Haller from Frankfurt for 45 million.
Also Read: Manchester City’s European dreams vital for Liverpool’s challenge
Wolverhampton Wanderers punched above their weight last season and that was down to multiple big name player coming in. The trend has continued as they have won the signature for Milan striker Patrick Crutone for 17.5 million. A shrewd buy indeed considering the 21-year has scored 21 goals in 90 appearances for the Italian giants.
Big name departures
Belgian Eden Hazard was the biggest name to put his back to the Premier League as he finally realised his dream which cost Los Blancos 150 million. A worthy addition to the Madrid team who are still searching for Cristiano Ronaldo’s replacement.
Hazard’s national teammate Romelu Lukaku forced his way out of Old Trafford after losing his place to youngsters. Lukaku made a 73 million transfer deadline day move to Inter – who are now managed by the Belgian’s former coach Antonio Conte. Lukaku’s former teammate at the ‘Theatre of Dreams’, Ander Herrera also embarked on a new journey as he was snapped up by Paris St. Germain on a free transfer. Aaron Ramsey swapped London for Turin as he was let go by Emery for nothing.
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