The Ultimate Transfer Roundup: Bargains, Best Signings, Flops

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Who are the Biggest Bargains?

The summer transfer window has seen plenty of bargains with many clubs looking to offload players in the current financial market to make way for incoming transfers and here we take a look at some of those.

Joe Hart crossed the border to join Celtic from Tottenham Hotspur following the Premier League outfit signing Atalanta shot-stopper Pierluigi Gollini. The former England international arrived at Celtic Park for just £1m on a three-year deal. Hart, who won the Premier League title twice in his time at Manchester City and is a four-time Golden Glove winner will offer his new club experience and, on his day, a world-class shot-stopper.

This summer, Everton managed to sign the likes of Demarai Gray and Andros Townsend for a combined fee of £1.7m. Townsend’s contract had expired at Crystal Palace, meaning that he was a free agent and able to reunite with his former manager at Newcastle United, Rafael Benitez who clearly has a lot of faith in the former Tottenham and England winger. Whilst, Gray had spent just six months at Bayer Leverkusen following a January transfer and has added pace to an Everton side that lacked it and has already started to show his potential, scoring twice in his first three league appearances for the Toffees.

Moussa Sissoko is also another Premier League bargain who has links to Tottenham, having left Spurs for just £3m to Watford to replace Will Hughes who has signed for Crystal Palace for £6m. The 32-year-old has 70 caps for France as well as 260 Premier League appearances to his name, providing Watford with athleticism and experience in the middle of the pitch, something that is vital for newly promoted sides.

Barcelona’s signing of Memphis Depay is up there with some of the very best signings of the summer transfer window having joined the Catalonian club on a free transfer from Lyon. The Netherlands international had a good Euro 2020 campaign and arrives at the Nou Camp following 76 goals and 55 assists in 178 matches for the Ligue 1 outfit and has already started to prove his worth at Barca with two goals and one assist in three appearances.

In relation to Barca, we saw one of the most unexpected transfers of all time, as Lionel Messi left the Nou Camp following registration and financial issues at the club. The 34-year-old had been at the club since February 2001 and look destined to be a one-club man, but, when Barca were unable to register the Argentinian who had just won the Copa America with his nation, he had no choice other than to join a new club, of which PSG was the chosen destination. In his time at the Nou Camp, he won 35 major honours, scoring 672 and creating 305 assists in 778 matches.

Messi was not the only bargain that PSG managed this summer, as they also signed Sergio Ramos, Gianluigi Donnarumma and Gini Wijnaldum on free transfers from Real Madrid, AC Milan and Liverpool.

Both of the Milan clubs saw bargain signings up-front, as Olivier Giroud joined AC from Chelsea for just £1m with add-ons, whilst Inter sealed the signing of former Manchester City and AS Roma striker Edin Dzeko on a free transfer with £1.8m bonuses going to Roma based on performance and club achievements. Giroud is perhaps one of the most underrated players in the Premier League era, having scored 90 league goals, as well as bagging 46 in 110 caps for France. Dzeko joins Inter on a short-term deal in order to help the club financially as a replacement for Lukaku, the Bosnian has already proven himself as a good striker in this league, scoring 77 in 168 Serie A matches for Roma.

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The Best signings

This summer, Southampton lost some key players in Ryan Bertrand, Danny Ings and Jannik Vestergaard. Ings was an inevitability, due to his contract only having one year left, but, Aston Villa was a surprise choice for a striker who had been linked with both of the Manchester clubs earlier on in the window. Ings scored 46 goals and created 10 assists in 100 games for Southampton, which is staggering considering their league status each season.

Vestergaard was a shock move and for as little as £15m following Wesley Fofana’s unfortunate leg break whilst playing for Leicester City in a friendly against Villarreal, the towering Danish centre-back could be a bargain. The 29-year-old played in all of Denmark’s six matches at Euro 2020 and was very impressive and comes with an abundance of Premier League experience having played 79 times for the Saints, showing a good areal presence and leadership skills.

Ing’s replacement Adam Armstrong could certainly be a player to look out for this summer following his signing from Championship side Blackburn Rovers. The 24-year-old Newcastle born forward has already managed a goal and an assist in his opening three league matches and comes into this season off the back of a 28-goal season in England’s second-tier at Ewood Park.

Manchester United’s summer transfer window has been like something you’d expect from a video game, having signed Cristiano Ronaldo, Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho in the same window. Ronaldo is returning to a club where he is idolised and adored by the fan base, following his 42-goal season in 2007/08 which saw him win the Champions League and the first of his five Ballon d’Ors. Ronaldo is the only player in football history to have won the Golden Boot in the Premier League, La Liga and Serie A and even managed to score his 109th international goal when winning the Golden Boot at Euro 2020 this summer. The 36-year-old has scored 783 goals and created 226 assists in 1074 appearances.

Meanwhile, Varane has joined from Real as a more than dependable centre-back partner to Harry Maguire having won the Champions League four times with Los Blancos, alike Ronaldo and having been a key part in France’s 2018 World Cup triumph in Russia. Sancho is one of the hottest properties in world football and the fact that he managed 50 goals and 64 assists in 137 matches for Borussia Dortmund at the age of 21 speaks for itself.

Kurt Zouma to West Ham United from Chelsea could be one of the signings of the summer having shown throughout his time at Chelsea and in loan spells with Stoke City and Everton that he is a very good centre-back at Premier League level. The 26-year-old had fallen out of favour with Thomas Tuchel having not being used in the Champions League final in Porto, but was part of the UEFA Super Cup winning side against Villarreal and will no doubt show his quality at the London Stadium.

Manuel Locatelli was one of the most touted players in world football after impressing for Italy at the Euros and this has seen him transfer to Juventus as part of their rebuild under Massimiliano Allegri for €25m with €12.5m add-ons. At 23-years-old the Italian midfielder comes with a wealth of experience and will have good chemistry and understanding with the likes of Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci having played with them at international level.

Who Will be the Biggest Flops?

Daniel James joined Manchester United in the summer of 2019 for £15m and has recently doubled his valuation and signed for rivals Leeds United for around £30m despite managing 18 goal contributions in 74 matches, this is three times more than what Leeds were going to bid in January 2019. James is known for having a good work rate and a burst of pace but his end product is more than often erratic and often not up to the required standard, hence why he is on this list.

For a transfer fee of around £50m from Brighton & Hove Albion, Ben White also features. The England international has arguably been overpaid for due to being a home-grown talent as quality ones come at a premium fee to meet registration rules in European competitions of which in pre-season, Arsenal were aiming to qualify for one. White has played just once so far for the Gunners, but it was his poor defending that played a part in their humiliating 2-0 opening day defeat at Brentford. Arsenal have had a horrendous start to the season, scoring no goals and conceding nine which sees them at the bottom of the table, if they and their defensive record doesn’t drastically improve, then this transfer may look like a waste of money.

Ibrahima Konate is a high-quality player, but, where his troubles at Anfield could be is in his injury records. The 22-year-old Frenchman already has a tough task in dislodging the centre-back pairing of Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez, but, since the start of the 2019/20 season, he has missed a staggering 45 matches due to injury, meaning that the Anfield club may not see him feature as much as they’d like.

The final player on this list is Sergio Aguero which will come as a surprise, but, alike Konate, there isn’t any guarantee that the Camp Nou club will keep him fit enough to last the whole season. Since the start of the 2019/20 campaign, he is currently on course to miss 44 matches, having picked up a serious calf injury before playing a competitive game for his new club. At the age of 33, avoiding injuries is always tricky and the Argentinian’s quality is undoubtable. With the likes of Depay and Griezmann able to play as a striker, it could be a tough season for the Manchester City legend.

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