Top 5 Summer Transfer Window Headlines
Top 5 Summer Transfer Window Headlines
Now that the summer transfer window is finally over, we must take a look back at what has transpired and the ramifications it has on clubs' domestic and Champions League title chances.
All across Europe, there were tons of players sold, loaned and picked up on free transfers during this summer’s transfer window. It was definitely one of the more memorable transfer windows UEFA has ever seen, and it saw deadline day winners and losers all across the continent.
Some transfers strengthened domestic leagues as a whole, while other transfers set off chain reactions throughout the entire continent of Europe. There was no shortage of transfers amongst the top four leagues in Europe: the English Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga and Serie A all made splashes.
But it was Ligue 1, French’s top flight, that stole the headlines with lavish spending on world-class, highly sought-after players. France’s top flight established themselves as a league to look out for by buying audaciously this summer, as they look to influence the Champions League and Europa League for years to come.
It was a summer of the usual suspects buying top players as well as missing out on top players, much to the surprise of fans and soccer pundits. This summer saw the Premiership lose one of the top players in the world, but bring in some of the top young talent in the world in the same transfer window.
Many experts have spoken at length about the winners and losers of this summer’s transfer window, so it will be interesting to see what acquisitions surprise us and which are considered failures down the line.
5. Neymar Finally Comes To Europe
The Samba star was supposedly headed to an array of destinations. The likes of Chelsea, Manchester City, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid all vied for the starlet's signature, but he settled on Catalan giants Barcelona for a fee of €57 million. It was rumored that the former Santos star wouldn’t make his move to Europe until after the 2014 World Cup in his homeland, but the appeal of playing along side Lionel Messi was too much to resist. Neymar broke the hearts of supporters all across Europe when he chose Barcelona over their squads.
4. Monaco Snatch up Trio
It was hard to believe a newly-promoted side could make a significant splash in the transfer market, but the French side did that and much more. They ransacked Portuguese heavyweights Porto for the signatures of James Rodriguez and Joao Moutinho for a combined €60 million. Monaco shocked everyone when they were able to persuade highly-rated Colombian International Radamel Falcao to sign for a staggering €56 million from Spanish side Athletico Madrid. With Monaco being one of the best places on the planet to live and the investment that the new owners have shown, it is easy to see why players are beginning to believe in their project.
3. Arsenal Finally Spend On Proven Quality
Many Arsenal supporters have grown furious over the way Arsene Wenger has handled the last few transfer windows, selling their best assets only to replace them with less quality. On transfer deadline day, Arsenal pulled off one of the signings of the season when they signed Real Madrid’s Mesut Ozil for a reported €50 million a club record. Ozil is without a doubt one of the best players in the world. At 24 years of age, he has yet to even reach his prime. Wenger satisfied the supporters and experts by signing a proven world-class commodity. In doing so, he satisfied his own criteria by buying a player who is young, and who will still have high resale value should the club decide to ever part ways with the German star.
2. Luis Suarez Saga
Maybe the best transfer business in this summer’s market was done by Liverpool. They found a way to keep their top player and not give in to lavish bids from Premier League rivals. Luis Suarez was adamant about leaving the Mersyside club and many believed his attitude left no choice but for Liverpool to sell him at some point. It looked inconceivable that Suarez would stay; it was not if he would go, but rather when he would go. Liverpool stuck to their guns and stood by their word that Suarez wouldn’t be sold at any price. It looks to have paid off, as they are currently at the top of the table. Having yet to concede a goal, the Reds look primed to be contenders for the EPL crown when Suarez returns from suspension.
1. Gareth Bale's €100 Million Record Fee
Everyone knew Gareth Bale would eventually leave Tottenham Hotspurs after the season he had in the Premiership in the last campaign. Also, the fact Spurs missed out on the Champions League once again contributed to Bale's subsequent departure. The question everyone was itching to know was for how much and to whom would he be sold. The Spurs went on a major spending spree this summer with Bale’s apparent departure in mind. Real Madrid had to make a splash signing with the likes of Neymar choosing Barcelona over the Madrid, and Bale was to be that signing. After a lot of negotiating and massaging of Cristiano Ronaldo’s ego, they agreed on a new world record fee of €100 million. Bale is under immense pressure to live up to that fee in a team with Ronaldo who was the previous record holder for a transfer fee. It will be interesting to see how Bale ingratiates himself into the Los Blancos team and how productive he can become under the bright lights at the Bernabeu.