The transfer window will firmly slam shut at 11pm tonight, allowing the ‘rumour mill’ some well-deserved rest after a fruitful summer’s harvest.
Chelsea’s capture of Eden Hazard and Swansea’s bargain basement steal of Michu are shaping-up to be signings of the season, but this week has seen more smart moves that will excite fantasy football managers up-and-down the land.
After his £10million switch, Adam Johnson will now blossom under Martin O’Neill’s man-management at Sunderland. A victim of Man City’s embarrassment of riches, Johnson’s opportunities were limited at Eastlands but in O’Neill he now has a sage mentor to guide his progress. Indeed, after impressing on his debut in the League Cup win over Morecambe, the winger stated:
“Martin O’Neill gave me confidence and freedom – it was as if I’d had the chains taken off me.”
The 25-yr-old will be coming into his prime over the next few years and will surely add to his eleven England caps once he’s playing regular Premiership football. I only hope Scott Sinclair‘s development isn’t stunted in the same manner if he finally joins City from Swansea today.
Roy Hodgson even spoke this week of the disappointment for national coaches at seeing some of their best players on the bench for respective clubs; and it will come as no surprise to him, or anyone, that Andy Carroll has now moved onto pastures new.
You have to feel sorry for Britain’s most-expensive footballer after Brendan Rodgers publicly dismissed him, seemingly without giving the £35million-man much of a chance. But the ‘traditional English centre-forward’ will fit Big Sam’s brand of football at Upton Park, and West Ham have done astute business by getting Carroll on a season-long loan.
The 23-yr-old will be keen to replicate the form he enjoyed at Newcastle and he’ll link-up well with fellow former-Magpie, Kevin Nolan. His meagre goals-to-game ratio of 1:5 at Liverpool can only improve as he tries to establish himself as a front-runner for England’s No.9 shirt.
In truth, none of the other strikers named in Hodgson’s World Cup qualifying squad – Defoe, Welbeck, Sturridge – have been guaranteed starters at club level but the latter, Chelsea’s Daniel Sturridge, could, potentially, flourish under Rodgers at Liverpool. Watch the transfer ticker to see if that one goes through…
Dimitar Berbatov is another tip to excel this year, after completing his move to Fulham. Another £30million-plus man, Manchester United’s record buy, Dimi’s first-team chances were restricted in the past couple of years, yet he still scored a fair 48 goals in 108 games for the Old Trafford giants.
At 31, his best days may have passed but Berba will thrive on being the big fish in a relatively-small West London pond. He’s also got a great relationship with Martin Jol, after their heady days at Spurs, so expect the Bulgarian to show his class at Craven Cottage.
The clock’s ticking. What else will happen today?
Will AVB, inexplicably, offload Spurs club-captain Michael Dawson? Despite the injury blow to Younes Kaboul, the Portuguese still seems willing to let the England international go, raising more than a few eyebrows at White Hart Lane.
Will free-agent Michael Owen find a club? Will a Premiership team snap-up Jack Butland? Or will Neymar jet-in to Birmingham International Airport, declaring his joy at signing for boyhood heroes, West Bromwich Albion…?
Who knows? Anything can happen on deadline day. Enjoy!