The European transfer window has only been open for six weeks and a lot of deals have been completed already. Although ridiculous sums have been flying everywhere, some clubs have so far managed to pull off potentially brilliant deals that cost almost nothing.
Here, we have compiled a list of the shrewdest transfer deals of the summer.
Liverpool’s Early Salah Gift
Many days after the pronouncement of the transfer of Dominic Solanke from Chelsea, Liverpool fans were frustrated at the lack of or little activity done by the club in the transfer window.
But, smiles were brought to their faces as the club announced the transfer of Mohammed Salah from Roma with a reported fee of £34.3m –and add-ons which could make him the club’s record buy.
Now a better player than he was at Chelsea where he started just six games, Salah is a good addition to the already-impressive attacking segment of the Liverpool teams.
Last season, Salah provided 13 assists in all competition — more than Coutino, Sane and Firmino; who were the regular attackers for Liverpool last season — showing his already-known ability to create chances.
Germane Goals Guarantor
”The one thing I can guarantee is goals” was the unequivocal message sent by Jermain Defoe as he was officially unveiled by Bournemouth after exercising a relegation release clause in his Sunderland contract to sign for the club.
Signing a 34-year old experienced player who has scored over 150 premier league goals was indeed a smart move by Eddie Howe.
Not only was he signed by the club; but, in a transfer market where there is low availability of quality strikers, he was gotten on a free transfer.
Jermain Defoe: Only Harry Kane (51.8) has required fewer touches per Premier League goals than Defoe (53) since August 2015 (10+ goals) pic.twitter.com/wge17LpzDQ
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) July 7, 2017
Defoe may well be described as a fine wine that gets better with age. His shooting ability may not be the best of all strikers in the world. But, it is something that will worry a lot of defenders in the Premier League.
Having an impressive 51% shooting accuracy (slightly below the likes of Aguero, Diego Costa and even Ibrahimovic) with a relegated club last season was not a bad effort at all.
He may not be able to move very quickly having lost some pace over the years. But, his potential partnership with Josh King will ensure he won’t run often with the ball next season.
Arsenal Got the ”HULK” Bargain
Sead Kolasinac, the ”Bosnian Hulk”, as he is fondly called — obviously due to his physique — will be one of the left-backs to beat next season.
His rate of interceptions – particularly evident in the 12 interceptions he made against Hamburg alone — only reveal a defender who possess a high level of concentration and reads the game very well; an attribute that proved very useful for Schalke last season.
The 24-year-old won more tackles on average per game (2:0) and more interceptions per game (3.2).
His level of creativity also fits into Arsenal’s new 3-4-2-1 formation-if used by Wenger next season.
Last season, he provided 5 assists-the joint-most for a defender in the Bundesliga with Markus Suttner, and even one more than David Alaba.
Kolasinac is a versatile player who can operate as a left-back, defensive midfielder and as a centre-back.
In a crazy transfer window where Manchester City bought Kyle Walker for around £50m, signing such a versatile 24-year old defender for zero amounts may well be one of the smartest moves made by Arsene Wenger in recent transfer windows.
A ”Hulk” bargain, you might want to say.
Bought For Less Than £6m, But One To Watch
The early purchase of Sandro Ramirez for a reported fee of £5.25m is one of the most unpredictable move this summer.
One may argue that Sandro is not yet Lukaku-esque, perhaps rightly so, but having gone through the ranks at Barcelona and leading the line at Malaga last season he isn’t a kid who cannot handle expectations.
His work rate and willingness to press the opposition, leading the defensive fight from the front really set the tone for his side last season; and the Toffees can expect the same.
14 – Sandro Ramirez scored 14 goals in La Liga last season for Malaga; no player aged 21 or younger scored more in the competition. Fresh. pic.twitter.com/Cd5uCkG7sO
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) July 3, 2017
Sandro found the back of the net 14 times in 28 starts — a decent average – and boasts a terrific technique when striking a dead-ball. He looks a genuine threat every time he shoots from distance.
That ability perhaps explains why he impressively averaged a shot every 25.17 minutes last season, even better than Lukaku (29.7). Not bad for a 22-year old striker.
The guidance of the experienced Wayne Rooney — another addition to the squad this summer — and his probable striking partner next season, would be helpful in developing him into what Everton needs.