As Premier League clubs approach transfer deadline day, these are my 6 top transfers of the window.
This blog has been prompted by the signing of Oliver Burke from Leipzig to West Bromwich Albion. I think Tony Pulis has been very cute with this one. He’s one of the most talented players to come out of Scotland for years and helped Leipzig to second spot in the Bundesliga last season after a surprise move from Nottingham Forest to Germany having come through the City Ground academy. Burke will be better for the experience and the winger looks a snip at £15 million.
Tottenham are always smart in the transfer windows and Daniel Levy is careful not to spend unnecessarily, so forking out £42 million for Davinson Sanchez must have been well thought out. I think he is a brilliant addition. He was remarkably good in the Europa League Final for Ajax against Manchester United and his pace off the mark and calm head on young shoulders will enable Mauricio Pochettino to go three at the back if he chooses. With Sanchez on board I expect Spurs to feature in the title race this year.
Another team gunning for the title is Manchester United and Zlatan Ibrahimovic is back, effectively for nothing and a massive pay cut of £225,000 per week. His re-signing is a no-brainer and who is to say Lukaku won’t get injured this season? Or Marcus Rashford? It could be just the January push United need after an arduous Christmas and there is the Champions League campaign to consider too.
Another August recruit is Gylffi Sigurdsson, and that 50 yard strike for Everton in the Europa League in Split last night shows that he can come up with magical moments which make the difference. I definitely see Everton as top 4 material and this battle for Champions League spots this season is fascinating. He will score 15 goals from midfield and Ronald Koeman has admitted he wants the Icelander to plug some of the goal gap left by Lukaku.
But I have saved best for last. Harry Maguire now of Leicester City. I have already been so impressed with him at both ends of the pitch and it is great news for England that Gareth Southgate has called him up already. He will score goals but despite his price of £17 million he is one of those John Terry type players who will be a rock in the centre of defence and lead by example. Power allied to a fierce will to win singles him out as a game-changer.
I also have a sneaking feeling that – when fit – Kelechi Iheanacho will be a world beater for Leicester and I think they are one of those teams bidding for the top 6 this season, although they will need him to be scoring either in tandem with Jamie Vardy, or when the Englishman is injured or suspended.