People were initially arguing that due to losing a few players, Arsenal were going to struggle going into the second half of the season, due to squad depth. However, I believe that Arsenal have done fantastically this window. Selling Theo Walcott has been on the horizon all season and it is useful for them to get him off the wage bill, but I believe an outstanding piece of business was the way they managed to get Alexis Sanchez off the books. Although they didn’t get any money for Sanchez, they were guaranteed a more than competent replacement in Henrikh Mykhitaryan. Oh and they made a huge signing by getting Pierre Emerick Aubameyang.
It’s been an fairly uneventful transfer window for Bournemouth, with no incoming transfers, and no significant departures with the possible exception of Benik Afobe rejoining high flying Wolves on loan. Despite this, transfer deadline day saw them claim a huge 3-0 win at Stamford Bridge, a result which can give them great confidence as a squad going into the second half of the season, especially with Callum Wilson being on form.
Brighton and Hove Albion:
Brighton have enjoyed a successful transfer window with the key signings being Jurgen Locadia from PSV and a return for Leonardo Ulloa on loan from Leicester. As Brighton have struggled for goals this season, this is exactly what they needed and the combined height and strength of Ulloa with the pace of Locadia, this has the makings of a promising partnership. In addition to this, they haven’t sold any key players, which will put them in a good position as they fight to avoid relegation.
Sean Dyche’s side have slumped somewhat in recent weeks after such strong early season form and are without a win in eight league matches. However, the signing of Aaron Lennon from Everton is a very shrewd signing. He’s a player with a lot of Premier League experience and his pace and directness can benefit Burnley and provide good service for their out and out strikers, such as Ashley Barnes and Sam Vokes. In addition to this, they’ve managed to hold onto all their key players, so if they can get out of this slump, they can push for the European spots.
Chelsea came in for much ridicule this transfer window for being linked with the likes of Andy Carroll and Peter Crouch in an attempt to push Alvaro Morata. Whilst these transfers were considered absurd, there’s no doubt that Chelsea play a style which suits a traditional ‘number nine’ striker and in any case, they responded to the ridicule by signing Olivier Giroud from rivals Arsenal, who is both exactly what they needed, as well as having Champions League experience. In addition to this, they have added Ross Barkley to the squad, who will be hungry and have a point to prove with the World Cup on the horizon. In terms of outgoings, whilst Michy Batshuayi is unlikely to play for Chelsea again following his loan move to Dortmund, Kenedy going to Newcastle and Charly Musonda going to Celtic will give two of Chelsea’s most promising youngsters some much needed experience.
Crystal Palace, whilst not making any ground breaking signings, have done some good business this window. As well as not losing any key players, such as Wilfried Zaha, they’ve managed to strengthen all over the pitch. With Jaroslaw Joch coming in defence, Erdal Rakip in midfield and Alexander Sorloth up front, Palace have strengthened in all positions and this can help them continue their good form under Roy Hodgson
Everton’s renaissance under Sam Allardyce has continued into a very productive transfer window for the Toffees. The signings of Cenk Tosun and out of favour Theo Walcott will bolster their attack and solve the problems they’ve had with goal-scoring; Walcott already grabbing two goals against Leicester on Wednesday night. In addition to this, the loan signing of Eliaquim Mangala from Man City is a good signing, as if he can have a run in the side, he might rediscover his form and confidence. Whilst they did lose Ross Barkley, I believe this was a good move, as he didn’t want to be at the club and keeping him was pointless.
The Terriers were able to strengthen their defensive depth by signing promising centre back Terence Kongolo on loan from Monaco, where has has struggled to break into the side. In addition to this, they were able to strengthen the midfield with the signing of Alex Pritchard from Norwich. Whilst no marquee signings were made as such, they were able to keep hold of their players and retain some degree of stability in the side needed by David Wagner in order to keep them in the top flight.
Despite some late interest by Manchester City, the foxes managed to hold onto star man Riyad Mahrez on deadline day and put City off with their high transfer fee. Apart from this, Leicester City’s transfer window consisted mainly of squad players who had struggled for minutes so far this season going on loan for some more minutes. Leonardo Ulloa returned to Brighton, Ahmed Musa returned to CSKA Moscow, long time servant Andy King joined strugglers Swansea, whilst Islam Slimani joined Newcastle. However, Leicester did make the strong signing of Fousseni Diabate to support the attack.
Liverpool were involved in two big money transfers this window. First, they signed long awaited defender Virgil Van Dijk for a record fee for a defender of £75 million and Van Dijk quickly became a hero netting a late winner against bitter rivals Everton in the FA Cup. However, the other big money transfer was less welcome for the Reds; the departure of talisman Philippe Coutinho for £142 million. Despite this, Liverpool were still able to become the first and so far only Premier League side to defeat leaders Manchester City, with an outstanding display in attack by the mercurial forward line of Salah, Mane and Firmino, showing that Coutinho might not be as missed as first thought.