Yet anther week has passed since the finale of the Premier League season and the rumour mill is now in full flow, as are the transfer executives for each club.
Today, Bournemouth broke their club record transfer fee to sign defender Nathan Ake from Chelsea on a permanent deal for £20m. The Dutchman spent last season on loan at the Cherries, playing ten games and scoring twice. His deal surpasses the £15m spent on winger Jordon Ibe from Liverpool just over a year ago. Bournemouth will hope he plays significantly better, as Ibe, who Liverpool fans claimed to be “the replacement for Sterling”, played 26 times and didn’t get a single goal or assist.
Ake becomes Bournemouth’s second signing of the summer, with now-former Sunderland forward Jermain Defoe coming in on a free transfer. Defoe spent a season at the Cherries on loan from West Ham, where he established himself as a prolific forward, scoring 18 goals in 29 games in the league that season.
Everton also looks set to have made a new signing, with Michael Keane close to agreeing on terms to a £25m move from Burnley. This would take the Toffee’s summer spending over the £100m mark.
Liverpool too are being heavily linked with a transfer, this time RB Leipzig’s 22-year-old Guinean midfielder Naby Keita being a victim of the speculation. Leipzig defied all expectations last season, eventually finishing first in the who-can-come-closest-to-Bayern competition, and finished second in the Bundesliga. The club, who were founded in 2009 after seven Red Bull employees bought out local club SSV Markranstadt and exploited the loophole in the German FA’s “fair ownership” rule, won 20 of their 34 league games and scored 66 goals in the Bundesliga. The RB in RB Leipzig does heavily nod towards the base of its ownership, however, it stands for Rasenballsport Leipzig, meaning lawn ball sports, not Red Bull.
Leipzig are apparently demanding £70m for Keita, a fee which does seem a bit too high for a realistic transfer fee, but Liverpool are prepared to break their Transfer record (equalled only last week when Mo Salah joined), and if Kylian Mbappe is worth £130m then Keita is certainly worth £70m. Keita also has a £48m release clause in his contract, but that can only come into action next summer. The Guinean scored 8 times and got 7 assists in 34 appearances last season.
Doing your transfer business early in the window is a wise choice when you’re a football club, a prime example being Real Madrid’s attempts to purchase David De Gea from Man United back in 2015. The story lasted all year, but as much as the deal was being reported, Real just never finished it off. They confirmed they agreed on a deal on deadline day, swapping Keylor Navas and £30m for the Spaniard. Navas had even passed his Manchester United Medical and David De Gea was already agreeing on personal terms with Florentino Perez (Real’s president) at the Bernabeu, however, Real received the correct paperwork by fax at one minute past midnight in Spain, and the Spanish FA barred the deal on the grounds of the paperwork not being submitted. De Gea then went on to sign a new Man United contract the following season, stating that he “wanted to become a club legend”.
So who do you think will be where next season? Leave your opinion in the comments below. If you enjoyed the post please do like and share, and if you want to see more from the dugout and be alerted when I post new content then subscribe, it’s free and you can use either your WordPress account or your Email. There will be a new post out this weekend, so stay tuned!
Update: It seems that as soon as I post on here about the week, and I have spent about an hour and a half researching facts, stats and figures that everything happens! in the last 5-6 hours since this WWU was published Barcelona have re-signed Gerard Deulofeu and Arsenal have looked more than likely to sign long-term target Alexandre Lacazette. Lacazette will most likely be the topic of this weekend’s post, so if you have any suggestions then please do let me know.