The summer transfer deadline has now passed for English clubs and it has been one hectic journey of will they won’t they.
The saga of the summer was Gareth Bales’s move to Real Madrid in a deal worth over £85 million making him the most expensive transfer in football history, overtaking Madrid’s £80 million capture of Cristiano Ronaldo from Manchester United. This ludicrous amount of money, many think, is a huge risk despite Bale winning both PFA young player and PFA player of the year last term. Spurs to their credit make the Spanish giants sweat on the transfer as they brought in a whole host of players, including Dutch whizkid Eriksen, Brazilian Paulinho and Valencia’s Roberto Soldado who has scored twice in Spurs’ first three games of the season.
On the other side of the spectrum, two of the biggest questions of the summer were surrounding the futures of Luis Suarez and Wayne Rooney. Both players seemed to have expressed a desire to leave their respective clubs but being such great talents, Liverpool and Manchester United were reluctant to sell. Suarez was the subject of a £40 million and one pound bid from Arsenal hoping it would trigger what turned out to be a non existent clause in his contract. The bid was rejected with Liverpool manager Brendan Rogers saying “We see Suarez to be something in the region of Bale’s transfer”. Chelsea saw two bids rejected for Rooney with Mourinho stating he was his main target to bolster his attacking options.
Manchester United who are not the type of team to aimlessly splash the cash were almost left with no significant signings until the last few moments of deadline day when David Moyes managed to link up with with Marouane Fellaini who he managed at former club Everton. The fee is in the region of £27.5 million which makes him United’s fourth highest signing, behind Juan Sebastian Veron, Rio Ferdinand and Dimitar Berbatov. Many fans were expecting several quality signings from Moyes who made a name for himself by bringing in great low quay signings at Everton like Tim Cahill, Leighton Baines and Nikika Jelavic. Many feel as though United acted rashly in the market and with the exit of Sir Alex Ferguson at the helm the pull just isn’t there, having seen bids for Baines, Herrera, Khedira and Fabregas turned down throughout the summer.
Arsenal’s capture of Mesut Ozil for £42 million is probably the pick of the transfers as he is known to be one of the best ball players in the world. At the age of 24 he is playing at the peak of his career and it was a shock to see Real Madrid allow such a talent to leave. Arsene Wenger who promised to spend money at Arsenal this summer has duly paid the fans back with such a high profile signing.
Elsewhere in the premier league Everton brought in Gareth Barry and Romelu Lukaku in on loan as well as James McCarthy who Roberto Martinez managed at Wigan. West Brom saw Odemwingie leave for Premiership newboys Cardiff and saw Stephane Sessegnon and Victor Anichebe through their doors to take on new challenges.
After many ups and downs in this summer market, the English clubs have spent more than ever to continue to improve their teams. It’ll be interesting how the technically astute AVB deals without Bale but with a whole host of new exciting players, how Fellaini fit’s into a United team with so much attacking flair. Ozil will be the one to watch however, with a proven goalscoring record in Europe and at international level and one of the best assist rates in the world and how he will try to bring Arsenal a well over due trophy.