Championship Transfer Review (1/4)

Written by David Robinson

The transfer window is now closed following a very interesting summer with plenty of deals and record breaking figures going around in the Championship. Here All Out Football review each Championship sides business with a rating and an opinion on how each club have done in a four part series. All deals have rough figures attached to them with details not being released by the clubs.

 

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credit pittaya

Aston Villa

Ins: – Tommy Elphick (£3m) – Pierluigi Gollini (£4.25m) – Aaron Tshibola (£5m) – Ross McCormack (£12m) – Mile Jedinak (£4m) – Ritchie De Laet (£2m) – Jonathon Kodjia (£15m) – James Chester (£8m) – Albert Adomah (£6m)

Outs: – Jose Angel Crespo – Callum Robinson (Compensation) – Brad Guzan (Nominal) – Idrissa Gueye (£7.1m) – Ciaran Clark (£5m) – Joe Bennett (free) – Joleon Lescott (free) – Harry McKirdy (loan) – Adama Traore (£7m)

A big re-shuffle is what Villa needed and that’s exactly what they have got. Their new owner certainly looks like he isn’t afraid of splashing the cash and while the Villian’s may not seem to be as shrewd and smart as a few of their Championship rivals, they have made some quality additions. Elphick was the first big signing that signalled their intent, this was the type of player Villa park needed and has lacked in the Premier League in recent years. Proven players that will fight for the cause, that’s what Roberto Di Matteo has at his disposal now.

Importantly the spine of the team now is looking very good, Mile Jedinak is another big signing, mainly due to his leadership skills that can carry the club throughout the season. Of course the club have gone very top heavy notably signing Ross McCormack and Jonathan Kodjia for massive deals including the record Championship transfer. This should bring terrific fire power for the club although I wasn’t sure they even needed Kodjia with Gestede, McCormack and Ayew all bringing different but excellent qualities to the side.

I think the signing of Albert Adomah was an important one on deadline day as I felt Villa weren’t overly strong out wide. Signing proven players is what Villa really had to do and they were partly funded by some decent sales raising around £20 million. Despite the high profile striking options a partnership of James Chester and Tommy Elphick could be massive for the club. Overall Aston Villa should be very happy with their business this summer but it may take some time to gel and for Di Matteo to get the best out of his squad so it might not be a quick fix so I think patience is needed at Villa Park. There is reason to get excited about the new transfers but it’s also important to not get too carried away in what will still be a tough Championship season.

Rating: 9/10

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credit Ben Sutherland

Barnsley

Ins: Tom Bradshaw (650k) – Angus MacDonald (unknown) – Sessi D’Almeida (unknown) – Ryan Kent (loan) – Adam Jackson (unknown) – Elliott Lee (unknown) – Adam Armstrong (loan) – George Moncur (500k) – Stefan Payne (free) – Saidy Janko (loan) – Sam Morsy (loan) – Cole Kpekawa (£450k)

Outs: Paul Digby (unknown) – George Williams (released) – Harry White (nominal) – Christian Dibble (free) – George Smith (released) – Otis Khan (uknown) – Kayden Jackson (loan) – Alfie Mawson (£5m) – Lewis Nyatanga (loan) – George Moncur (loan) – Shaun Tuton (loan)

2016 has been a pretty good year for Barnsley so far so plenty of changes were not needed despite moving up to the Championship this season. Nine points from the opening five games is a very good start and the Tykes looked to have added nicely to their squad this summer. Their attacking options are very healthy with Adam Armstrong a late addition one that could prove to be inspired, that added to Tom Bradshaw and Oakwell could be seeing plenty of good games and results across the season. Ryan Kent should be an interesting move on loan from Liverpool with the youngster and Adam Hammill on the wings, they possess a couple of tricky and clever wide man that can give oppositions problems to think about. They have also made around £5m alone by selling Alfie Mawson after only one year at the club. This points to some smart business as a whole by the club but we can only wait and see to find out how much of a loss Mawson’s move will be. The continuity of the squad with a lift from a few should put the Tykes in good stead.

Rating: 7.5/10 

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credit The Stadium Guide

Birmingham City

Ins: Ryan Shotton (500k) – Robert Tesche (free) – Che Adams (£2m) – Greg Stewart (£500k) – Daniel Cleary (free) – Lucas Jutkiewicz (loan) – Rhoys Wiggins (loan)

Outs: James Vaughan (free) – David Edgar (free) – Denny Johnstone (unknown) – Wes Thomas (released) Andrew Shinnie (loan) – Koby Arthur (loan) – Nicolai Brock-Madsen

As ever Birmingham City have to be measured with their business. They once again look to have been smart under Rowett with Che Adams the big signing for the Blues. The talented 20 year old should be one to look out for in the future although he already looks ready to be a key player for Birmingham this season. I do think Jon Toral leaving is a blow at St Andrews so it hasn’t been easy in the market. As ever though bringing in experienced heads in Shotton and Tesche give Rowett some more options to work with. Both of these players can do a job and know the league so should be sensible deals.

They have brought in Lucas Jutkiewicz on deadline day which should eased the pressure of Clayton Donaldson, a decent loan signing. Continuity should be kept from the window and while his side are again going to have a struggle competing against the really heavy spenders, it will be up to Rowett to once again exceed expectations with his excellent management pedigree.

Rating: 7/10

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credit Ronnie Macdonald

Blackburn Rovers

Ins: Derrick Williams (unknown) – Tommie Hoban (loan) – Martin Samuelson (loan) – Sam Gallagher (loan) – Gordon Greer (free) – Liam Feeney (free) – Stephen Hendrie (loan) – Anthony Stokes (free) – Danny Graham (free) – Jack Byrne (loan) – Marvin Emnes (loan) – Charlie Mulgrew (free)

Outs: Shane Duffy (£4.5m)  – Grant Hanley (£5.5m) – Chris Taylor (free) – Matt Kilgallon (free) – Tommy Spurr (free) – Anton Forrester (released) – Nathan Delfouneso (released) – John O’Sullivan (loan) – Simon Eastwood (free) – Simeon Jackson (free) – Chris Brown (released) – Lee Williamson (free)

It’s a grim situation at Ewood park with the owners putting the club in a real mess. This meant it was vital that some good business was made particularly following a horrendous start in the league. The key moves were of course to defensive partnership Shane Duffy and Grant Hanley who went for a combined £10m. These are not easy losses despite Duffy’s late antics but as long as adequate replacements were brought in it could be some form of consolation.

However Blackburn’s owners continue to starve the club with no transfer fees being spent it’s always difficult to have a good window. With this in mind though I think Blackburn have made some very good deals considering the situation. Tommie Hoban should be a reliable addition and could prove to be a masterstroke on loan in the heart of the defence. Elsewhere there is a real mix of youth and experience brought in with the likes of Martin Samuelson a really talented player.

The problem for Blackburn is they will be in a relegation fight in my opinion. Have they bought players who are ready for the fight? It’s a tough ask for these young loan additions to deal with pressure and some likely setbacks. Deadline day deals for Charlie Mulgrew and Marvin Emnes look good ones and that will certainly help Owen Coyle’s cause. Arguably the biggest bonus of the summer is holding on to Ben Marshall. With all things considered I think Blackburn at least have a chance now to develop a decent side but it’s been another negative window for Blackburn on the a whole because of the lack of money spent, their owners are simply a disgrace.

Rating: 7/10

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credit Tom

Brentford

Ins: Callum Elder (loan) – Daniel Bentley (compensation) – John Egan (tribunal) – Romaine Sawyers (free) – Sullay Kaikai (loan) – Rico Henry (£1.5m)

Outs: David Button (£1.5m) – Jake Bidwell (£1.3m) – Jack O’Connell (unknown) – Emmanuel Ledesma (free)

Some very impressive work from the Bees again, in a league now where there is some serious cash being spent, they have acted shrewdly and brought in some talented individuals notably with that proven football league experience. Daniel Bentley is one of the most highly rated young ‘keepers in the Football League while Romaine Sawyers on a free is a steal. They have replaced their losses well in my opinion, Callum Elder had an impressive spell with Peterborough last season who will compete with Rico Henry, one of the brightest talents in the Football League to replace Jake Bidwell. They haven’t been overly active but I think each deal has clearly been thought through very well and that should only put Brentford in a position to improve this season. I believe this window represents a good one at Griffin Park however losses from previous transfer windows have pulled Brentford back.

Rating: 7.5/10

 

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Brighton & Hove Albion

Ins: Shane Duffy (£4.5m) – Sebastien Pocognoli (loan) – Glenn Murray (loan) – Ben Hall (200k) – Steve Sidwell (free) – Oliver Norwood (unknown) – Adekudbe (loan)

Outs: Forster-Caskey (loan) – Glen Rea (uknown) – Chris O’Grady (loan) – Adam Chicksen (free) – Inigo Calderon (free)- Gordon Greer (free) – Andrew Crofts (free) – Bobby Zamora (released)

A very good season for Brighton last season, they made some excellent signings in January and have once again built on a good side this summer. Notably their key signings go down the spine of their team and Duffy, Norwood and Murray all strengthen their squad. I felt that missing out on Alex Pritchard was a big blow this window, that would have been a fantastic signing for the Seagulls. However Norwood should offer his technical capabilities to Chris Hughton and give another dimension at the AMEX. In what is a really good squad filled with experience, technical qualities and depth only a few players were needed while keeping hold of players could’ve been deemed more important, Dale Stephen’s and Lewis Dunk staying showed the strength of the club to not give in. So overall a productive window with a few good additions.

Rating: 8/10

Do you agree with the ratings? What has been the best deal from this list? Let us know in the comments below!

featured image by pittaya

PART 2 HERE – PART 3 HERE – PART 4 HERE