Written by Harry Martin
In what is such a competitive league, the Championship requires a whole host of talent in any given squad, coupled with great team cohesion and a will to win games even not at your best. All Out Football have been monitoring the ins and outs in the second tier and have targeted three of the best deals to have happened so far.
Jake Bidwell – QPR
The 23 year old full back arrives at Loftus Road after three successful years at Brentford, previously having been on loan to the Bees. The former Everton trainee has established himself as a quality full back who has a bit of everything to his game. Someone who can be a threat going forward, offering that width down the left with a fantastic delivery of the ball. As we know with many modern full backs, not all have the ability to defend and their positioning can be off, when carried away with attacking. But this is what sets Bidwell apart, QPR have got themselves a technically gifted left back who has it all, any winger up against him knows they’re in for a game.
For me, QPR have had an imbalance in the squad over the past few seasons and arguably they’ve been signing the wrong type of player, but it seems that this Summer they’ve cleared out a lot of the deadwood. Bidwell will bring a good balance to the team and really cement his place early on as the Hoops haven’t really had a quality left back in a long time, the likes of Traore, Yun Suk-Young and Konchesky not really doing enough for me. Hasselbaink has clearly gone for Championship experience in his signings so far, and Bidwell also fits that mould, having notched up over 120 games over the past three campaigns and again QPR needed this, someone with Championship knowhow. I think this signing will prove to be a successful one, and will provide a great partnership down the left with El Khayati, and if Bidwell stays fit and plays the majority of games like he has in previous years, then the R’s have a player on their hands.
Kemar Roofe – Leeds United
Over the last few seasons, Leeds have lacked a goalscorer, or at least goals from all areas. In Kemar Roofe they are getting a young, hungry player with the ability to run at players and make things happen, aswell as the most important part in football, hit the back of the net. For a reported fee of just under 3 million, I believe the Yorkshire club have got themselves a top player, for a great price. Roofe bagged 25 goals in 49 appearances in all competitions last term which is a seriously good return for a striker, let alone a wide player, and this ability to chip in with important goals from wide areas is something which will help Leeds massively, not having to rely on players such as Chris Wood and fellow new signing Marcus Antonsson. This could be a key feature to a Leeds side who could well play with the lone striker under Monk. If Roofe cements that left wing role in the team then I could see a fantastic link with Charlie Taylor down that left side, and if Roofe tends to drift in on his stronger right side then it will open up the space for Taylor to get forward and get beyond teams. The former Oxford United man isn’t just a player who will come inside though, he will keep defenders guessing and hitting the byline at times and this kind of movement will only create more chances for his teammates aswell as benefiting him in front of goal. It’s hard to believe that the former West Brom trainee is still only 23 and for me, under Garry Monk he will only keep improving and as Leeds get better as a team, he has a real chance to showcase his talents and try to take them into one of them top 6 spots.
Sergi Canos – Norwich City
A quality signing for the Canaries, Canos arrives at Carrow Road after enjoying a fantastic season in the Championship last time around with Brentford on loan from Liverpool before Norwich snapped him up on a permanent, and like before, this is such an important factor going into a tough season, he knows the divsion well despite only being 19. The former Barcelona winger is a complete box of tricks and is such a handful for his opposing man, seemingly gliding past players with the ball sticking to his feet, upon seeing him in the flesh, that’s when you know he’s a typical ‘Barcelona’ player. Again as with Roofe to Leeds, it’s the type of player you want to sign following a disappointing season last year because after Norwich’s relegation he is the type that will excite the fans and get that belief back, coupled with being hungry for the game and wanting to better his career, and this is something you can see him doing, providing the club nurture him and stick with him. He will make mistakes, any young player is prone to a mistake, but this is someone who can provide that piece of magic to win a game and separate two teams. A reported fee of £2.5 million up front is again a great deal in the modern market and if Norwich are to be successful again in the second tier, this man will play a large part in that, and I’m sure playing with experienced professionals such as Steven Naismith, Canos is in the right place to ply his trade.
Do you agree with these three players being the top signings so far in the Championship? Let us know who your three would be!