Harrowing might be a bit of a stretch but David Moyes’ first transfer window in charge of Manchester United could have been better. He couldn’t persuade either Thiago or Cesc Fabregas to swap Barcelona for Old Trafford, nor Everton to part with Leighton Baines. And while he did eventually get Fellaini, it was for more than the Belgian’s expired release clause.
Where to start with Newcastle? If Man City learnt from their mistakes last summer, Newcastle took repeating them to a fine art, throwing in the contentious Joe Kinnear as director of football for good measure. Loic Remy joined on loan in a deal that actually nearly happened in January and Alan Pardew faces a task keeping the Magpies competitive until January. At least Yohan Cabaye stayed.
Chris Hughton doesn’t tend to shout about anything but he has explored and exploited the European market intelligently, signing players a clear upgrade on what he had in the Canaries squad last season. Leroy Fer and Ricky van Wolfswinkel have joined from the continent but Hughton hasn’t forgotten the home market, Nathan Redmond in particular a promising capture.
Southampton are another side to have done their thing out of the spotlight this summer, beating a host of rivals to Victor Wanyama and adding some more quality purchases. But perhaps most importantly the Saints are still blooding talent from their prolific academy, showing Mauricio Pochettino isn’t only interested in the shortest route to success but also the most gratifying.
Much has been made of Stoke trying for a new approach under Mark Hughes but the Welshman’s first transfer window has been more evolution than revolution. He has solved the Potters’ dire need for a left-back, and Hughes did draw the best form from Stephen Ireland when they were together at City. A repeat would be welcome for all parties.
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