Which five transfers could be set to light up the Premier League in 2017/18?
Alexandre Lacazette – Lyon to Arsenal – £52.7m
There is undoubtedly a lot of pressure on the shoulders of 26-year-old Frenchman Alexandre Lacazette, yet with 100 goals in 203 appearances for Lyon, Arsenals new number 9 certainly has a natural instinct in front of the goal.
Fundamentally, the arrival of Lacazette is assured to free up wonder boy Alexis Sanchez and give him the flexibility he’s desperately been searching for; with Sanchez’s finesse and Lacazette’s ambition, an extraordinary partnership could be present at the Emirates in the upcoming season.
Interestingly, only two of Lacazettes 28 Ligue 1 goals last season came from outside the box and for a team who are portrayed as a team who like to ‘walk the ball’ into the net, Lacazette is certainly in the right place and could be the missing piece in Wenger’s current attacking dilemma.
Wenger and his team have come under fire in recent years and for the first time in his Arsenal reign, the 16/17 season saw his team lose out on top 4, something I’m sure Wenger and the club are determined to reclaim and with Lacezette now on the books, this determination is certainly more realistic.
Jermain Defoe – Sunderland to Bournemouth – Free
Although sitting at the fine age of 34, Defoe’s performances for the Black Cats in previous Premier League seasons have unquestionably been critical in Sunderland’s recent survival and at times last season, Defoe looked to be just beginning his Premier League career.
The 16/17 season saw Sunderland’s Premier League status diminished, even Defoe’s 15 goals couldn’t save them. However, Defoe was sure to return to the Premier League due to his contract and his prolific experience and it was Eddie Howe and Bournemouth who gained the services of the Englishman for the upcoming season.
In a World Cup year where Jermain will be hopeful of a place on the plane and an upcoming season which looks to be very competitive this was certainly a magnificent signing for the both parties and if Bournemouth are hopeful of another top half finish in the 17/18 season, Defoe’s services will considerably help towards this aim.
Alvaro Morata – Real Madrid to Chelsea – £70m
This time four weeks ago a move from Real Madrid to Manchester looked almost a certainty for Morata and it was suspected that Conte’s target, Belgium Romelu Lukaku, was to be making his way from Everton to Stamford Bridge.
Yet to the surprise of the footballing world, these supposedly likely deals took a switch and Morata found himself packing his bags for London to join the current Premier League champions.
The Spaniard struggled for game time in two spells at Real Madrid and even got shipped out to Turin for a season with Serie A’s, Juventus, so was £70m a lot of money for his services. The future of Diego Costa is surely not at Stamford Bridge so it was crucial for Abramovich to fork out this excessive fee.
Morata is likely to find himself leading the line for the Blues, yet his potential success at Chelsea is yet to tell and after a difficult experience in his first competitive match with the blues, a missed penalty in a shoot-out against London rivals Arsenal was all Morata needed.
Harry Maguire – Hull City to Leicester City – £17m
In the opinion of most Leicester City fans, a youthful, hungry centre-back was on top of the list for this summer’s transfer window. Although appreciative of the work done by the very experienced Robert Huth and Wes Morgan, the upcoming campaign is surely time for Shakespeare to consider a new outlook of youth and drive in the centre of his defence.
The arrival of Maguire for £17m has got many city fans excited, especially after an impressive pre-season display in the blue shirt. Maguire’s confidence is certainly not lacking and his tenacity going forward and his composure on the ball gives the Foxes defence a new look for the upcoming season and a player with huge potential could have an influential season at the King Power for himself and for the Foxes.
Javier Hernandez – Bayer Leverkusen – £16M
For the hammers to secure the signing of Mexican Hernandez for a minimal fee in today’s game of £16m, a bargain is one word many would use to characterise the deal which is surely the finest of deals so far in this window.
The little wizard has scintillating Premier League and International experience; and after a turbulent season for the Clarets and Blues last season, this signing is sure to provide Hammers fans with a stable and consistent goal scorer which last season, was missing from the squad.
He is a player who is bringing considerable experience and quality to the club and after the signing of Stokes Marko Arnautovic, the hammers attack is shaping up quite nicely for the upcoming campaign.
These five transfers could prove pivotal in the Premier League season, adding to the reasons why the Premier League title race is set to be the closest yet.
Written by Eamon Kitching.