Now that the dust has settled on another chaotic transfer window, it is time to dissect what we have learned from this summer’s dealings. Premier League clubs spent a staggering $622 million on new players, but was it money well spent?
Both Merseyside clubs, Liverpool and Everton, enjoyed successful transfer windows. Including bringing in three players apiece on deadline day. Potentially the biggest coup of the summer for Liverpool was persuading Uruguayan Luis Suarez to stay at Anfield.
If the volatile striker’s head is in the right place, he and Daniel Sturridge could form one of the most potent attacks in the Premier League. Liverpool manager Brenden Rodgers has also done solid business in defensive areas, adding Kolo Toure and Mamadou Sakho. Everton, despite losing Marouane Fellaini to Manchester United, have added a nice blend of youth and experience to their ranks. Roberto Martinez raided former club Wigan with the signings of James McCarthy and Arouna Kone. McCarthy shows signs of great promise and will look to fill the void left by Fellaini’s departure. Manchester City and England midfielder Gareth Barry joins Everton on a season long loan, and will add strength to the middle of the park. Everton’s deadline day loan swoop for Chelsea forward Romelu Lukaku may prove to be one of the best deals of the season. The Belgium man scored 17 goals for West Brom last season.
It’s not often that you sell your best player and still come out a winner but that’s exactly what Tottenham have accomplished this summer. Chairman Daniel Levy played hardball with Real Madrid and Gareth Bale, forcing the Spanish side to part with a record breaking $120 million. Spurs also broke their own record transfer fee three times this summer, acquiring Eric Lamela, Christian Eriksen, and Paulinho. While it might take time for the new boys to gel, Tottenham couldn’t have done any better in their attempts to replace the Welsh winger.
Manchester City avoided the deadline day scramble for players as they concluded their business early in the window. Pellegrini added strength in the attacking areas with La Liga starlets Jesus Navas and Alvaro Negredo.
Arsenal broke the bank on deadline day to lure German international Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid. The signing of a truly world class talent like Ozil is something the Arsenal faithful have been crying out for. The playmaker has more assists in the Champions League since 2010 than anybody else. However, the more level headed Arsenal supporter would tell you that Arsenal has more need for a bruising centre-back rather than a silky passing machine. A strong presence in the midfield and a forward would not have gone amiss either for the Gunners.
Chelsea’s Jose Mourinho conducted solid business this off-season. The Blues brought in attacking midfielders Willian and Andre Schurrie. Samuel Eto also linked up with his former manager to provide options up front.
Norwich City and Southampton both made moves as they aim to climb up the Premier League. The Canaries attempted to alleviate their goal scoring woes by bringing in Gary Hooper and Ricky Van Wolfswinkel. Southampton have also upgraded with big money moves for midfielder Victor Wanyama and striker Pablo Osvaldo.
Manchester United may have learnt an important lesson this transfer window, it is not advisable to lose your manager and CEO in the same summer.
After the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson and the departure of CEO David Gill, United have been knocked back in their attempts to sign world class talent. David Moyes and Ed Woodward failed in their bid to capture midfielders Cesc Fabregas, Thiago, Luka Modric, and Sami Khedria.
United did however capture Marouane Fellaini from Everton on deadline day, and he will add some bit to the midfield. Fans will be concerned with United’s inability to get their hands on the best players in the world and will hope this summer was only teething pains for the new regime. However, the fact remains that given Manchester United’s stature in the game, their inability to bring in top talent makes them my big loser of the window.
Source: BBC Sport, ESPN.