It’s that time of the year again. The protracted transfer sagas start to quieten and Premier League squads have been submitted, the summer transfer window is well and truly closed. It’s now time for teams to let their transfer business do the talking on the pitch.
With a reinforced attack, Manchester United failed to bolster other areas, and with an attack for that makes defences quiver in their boots already, neighbours Manchester City failed to offload all of their deadwood. Whilst on the other hand, out of the top four Chelsea have managed a net spend of roughly £8million, a hefty uklotto jackpot total, but nowhere near the net spend of their fierce rivals Arsenal and Liverpool.
Speaking of which, the two aforementioned teams have a lot to prove this year. Liverpool will be looking to build up on last year’s success and win their first league title in nearly 30 years, a hard task especially after the £75million (an even heftier jackpot total) loss of super striker/biter Luis Suarez. Arsenal on the other hand will look to defend their honour in the FA Cup in January after winning it last season, and will hope that the signings of Sanchez, Chambers, Debuchy, Ospina and Welbeck can lead the Gunners to further glory.
With all that said and done, we all feel that Basingstoke signing Ronaldinho would go down as the top transfer of this window. But it’s most likely to not happen.
Here are a few transfer sagas that got us going this summer…
Loic Remy to Liverpool
A few weeks after the big split from Luis Suarez, Liverpool were back out there, head up high, tears all dried up and ready to find a new man in their life. They thought that man was Loic Remy: strong, quick, a real leader of the line. But just like all good things in our lives, this transfer came to a surprise climax, during his medical – of all things. A failed medical saw the France striker sent back to QPR. Remy is now happy with his new man Jose at Chelsea FC.
Arturo Vidal to Manchester United
The man with, what seems to be, a thousand tattoos. One of them, a Michael Jordan tattoo on his neck. Nevertheless, our mohawked midfield maestro had been linked with a move to the Red Devils since, what feels like, the days of Adam & Eve. Sadly it’s only words, and words are all we got from this protracted transfer saga as the 27-year-old Chilean’s knee injuries put Manchester United off signing him. Then again, at least he’ll still be able to play Champions League football with Juventus this season.
Radamel Falcao/Edison Cavani to Liverpool
“A club desperate to sign a big name striker. Two strikers seemingly eager to get out of Ligue 1.” Seems like the perfect plot for a movie based on soccer transfer sagas. You probably could have called it, “The Great French Escape”, with the end resulting in both players signing for LFC. Although if one of these transfers had actually gone through, Liverpool fans would have imploded. Thank God they signed Balotelli instead.
Mario Balotelli to Arsenal
Speaking of which, the controversial Italian striker was earmarked for a return to the Premier League much earlier than the final days of the transfer window. He was also reported to be heading to north London and not north England. Scheduling eh?
Dirk Kuyt to Manchester United
This one probably slipped under the radar. Apparently Louis van Gaal was so impressed with the former Kop star’s work rate during the World Cup that he saw him as the perfect fit for his new look Manchester United. And although he is a workhorse on the pitch, Dirk Kuyt’s work hardly amounts to much somehow gaining him the reputation of ‘the guy at the party that’s just happy to be there’. A big shame really.
Transfer News: Man United target in-form PL stars to bolster midfield department
Maddison and Grealish earmarked to bring life to Man United’s midfield
Scott McTominay was out injured and Paul Pogba continues to struggle with an ankle injury. This forced Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to play an out of form Jesse Lingard as the attacking midfielder.
The player’s performance came in for a lot of flak from the United faithful, who were vocal about their displeasure at the player’s performance. With the 27-year-old out of sorts, bringing an attacking midfielder in the window has become imperative.
With Eriksen seemingly out of the picture, Leicester City’s James Maddison and Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish have emerged as top prospects. Both Englishmen have been in fine form this season. Maddison has scored 9 goals and 3 assists in 23 appearances whereas Grealish has 8 goals and 6 assists in 21 games.
Both these players have considerably outdone United’s existing options by a wide margin. Either of the additions will add a new dynamic to the United midfield, with a Champions League spot still for grabs.
Lack of cutting edge?
United are currently 5th in the table and have been woefully inconsistent this season. The Red Devils haven’t been able to take advantage of Chelsea’s slip-ups. A dynamic new signing that can add drive to the midfield will help going forward this season.
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With Andreas Pereira and Juan Mata lacking the necessary quality, the current midfield lacks imagination and drive. The right addition can make all the difference this season with a little less than half the season left to play.
Transfer news: Man United star regrets summer decision to not push for transfer
Paul Pogba regrets summer decision to not press for a Manchester United exit
The French midfielder admitted he wanted a new challenge (while on tour in Asia), however, the Red Devils refused to listen to offers for the World Cup winner and Real Madrid failed to submit a large enough bid (h/t Metro).
Pogba’s agent, Mino Raiola, also gave several interviews where he claimed his client wanted to leave but the Frenchman has remained professional and hasn’t submitted a transfer request to the club, according to the Metro.
The European transfer window ends on 2nd September and United will not be able to sign a replacement for the Frenchman. The report claims that Pogba’s dreams of moving to the Spanish capital are slowly fading away for another season at least.
United shouldn’t allow Pogba to leave now
The Red Devils need to keep hold of their best players and Pogba fits that bracket easily.
United have allowed Romelu Lukaku to leave in the summer and losing Pogba now would put us in more trouble.
Not being able to sign a replacement would be a huge problem for us and hopefully, Pogba puts in some great performances now.
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The Red Devils lost their previous game to Crystal Palace and need to return to winning ways against Southampton today.
“I’m relaxed”: £85m-rated Man United target remains coy when questioned about his future
Kalidou Koulibaly remains coy when questioned about his future
Manchester United summer target Kalidou Koulibaly has remained coy when questioned about his future (h/t the Sun).
The Senegalese international is currently representing his country at AFCON and he is unsure whether he would be at Napoli next season.
He said, (h/t The Sun)
“I don’t know. I think so. But I have to play the AFCON and then after that, I’ll go back to Napoli.
“Everyone’s speaking about me, but I’m only speaking about Senegal because that’s my objective today and I want to achieve something big with Senegal.
Koulibaly also added that he is relaxed and doesn’t want to speak about the future.
“I don’t want to talk about my future today. I’m relaxed, I want to focus on the Afcon and after that return to Napoli and we’ll see what happens.”
The 28-year-old had his breakthrough under Carlo Ancelotti and has become one of the sought-after centre-backs at the moment.
In fact, the former Metz player played a pivotal role in Napoli’s successful Serie A run, eventually ending up second in the table.
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Koulibaly has featured in the Serie A team of the year in every season since making his switch from Genk and was named as Serie A’s best defender last season.
United dealt with Harry Maguire transfer blow
Meanwhile, Harry Maguire has chosen Manchester City over Man United, who have been targeting him for a while now. With this decision, the Red Devils are forced to move for another centre-back. However, Koulibaly’s £85m price tag looks a hefty one.
Transfer news: Manchester United revive interest in world-class £100m youngster
Man United revive their interest in Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho
Manchester United have revived their interest in Jadon Sancho of Borussia Dortmund, according to the Sun.
The English prodigy turns out to be the priority for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as the Norwegian manager aims to bring firepower to United’s attacking line up.
However, Bundesliga outfit Dortmund are demanding around £100m for their star winger from the potential suitors. Sancho, 19, racked up 13 goals and 19 assists last season where Dortmund missed out a chance to win the Bundesliga title.
He has already earned 6 caps for the English national team. In fact, he was the league’s top assist provider (14 assists). Only Lionel Messi had more assists (15) than Sancho in Europe’s top 5 leagues last season.
Yet, United’s financial constraints are making it difficult for them to splurge on one particular player.
Why should United need a player like Sancho?
The Norwegian manager is desperate to rebuild the squad around some young talents and the signing of Daniel James from Swansea was the first indication.
Whilst Alexis Sanchez struggled last season and Anthony Martial had an injury-ridden campaign, Sancho would be a brilliant addition to breathe new life into United’s attacking line-up.
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At the same time, we can look out for Sancho’s partnership with Marcus Rashford as we witnessed during the international break.