This summer transfer window is a landmark one for the Premier League. It is the first since the new £5.14 billion TV deal, meaning the money in England's top flight will skyrocket once more. The managers have already been recruited; Jose Mourinho, Pep Guardiola, Antonio Conte, Jurgen Klopp and more will all be standing on the touchlines next season, but little transfer activity has been completed as of yet.
That is largely a result of the Copa America and European Championships, as major international tournaments often halt transfer dealings. Once these two competitions are over though, we can expect the transfer market to explode into life. £59.7 million currently stands as the British record transfer fee, but don't be surprised to see that smashed this window, with even the leagues bottom sides potentially having in excess of £50 million allocated for transfers this summer.
As such, we have compiled a list of who would be the ideal signing for each Premier League club this summer. Some may be more ambitious than others, but all are intended to be realistic, otherwise the ideal signing for every club would most likely be one of Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Luis Suarez. The article takes into account what type of player each club needs most, potential fees and wage demands.
20 AFC Bournemouth - Alexander Milosevic
Bournemouth may have survived relatively comfortably in their first season in the Premier League, but their defence was still one of the worst in the league. Only last placed Aston Villa conceded more goals than the Cherries last term. A defender then has to be the most pressing need for the south coast side. A number have been linked but Alexander Milosevic has been the best shout so far. A towering centre-back with excellent ability on the ball, he would fit seamlessly into Eddie Howe's Bournemouth side, and should cost no more than £2 million.
19 Arsenal - Aymeric Laporte
Another club in need of a central defender are Arsenal. The Gunners have already made a wise acquisition in the form of Granit Xhaka to give their midfield some much-needed steel, but questions persist over whether Per Mertesacker has the ability (particularly in terms of pace) to be a starting defender for a title-chasing outfit. Aymeric Laporte would be an ideal partner for Laurent Koscielny.
The 22-year-old Bilbao defender would require a huge transfer fee and wages to be lured to the Emirates, but it could be money well spent if he propels Arsenal to a Premier League title. Earlier this year, he said that he would reject a move to a higher Spanish club like Barcelona, “FC Barcelona is one of the most important clubs in the world, but I would reject an offer from them. They have not talked to me to present an offer, not this season or last, but it wouldn't interest me. All the future is ahead, playing these years at Athletic.”
18 Burnley - Bradley Dack
There have been reports this month that Burnley, who have previously been reluctant to splash the cash, have a budget of £60 million this transfer window, in a bid to survive in next season's Premier League. As such, one might suggest the Clarets should set their sights higher than League One player Bradley Dack. However, Dele Alli is living proof of how a player can make the jump with ease. Burnley will pony up the cash to somebody and there's no reason to think it can't be Dack.
17 Chelsea - Mattia De Sciglio
16 Crystal Palace - Moussa Dembele
15 Everton - Bernd Leno (mandanda)
New manager Ronald Koeman reportedly has a sizable war chest ahead of this summer's transfer window, and one can expect Everton to spend serious money in the coming months. They are coming off a season that saw them finish with 47 points, good enough for 11th in the Premier League. To climb into the top half of the league, they'll have to open up their checkbook.
14 Hull City - Loic Remy
A little ambitious perhaps but for so long Steve Bruce's Hull City side has looked very strong with the exception of up front. They'll be looking to have a strong 2016-17 season in the Premier League to avoid once again being relegated.
13 Liverpool - Mario Gotze
This one makes a lot of sense, as it would spark a resurgence of a young player with lots of promise and a manager would be able to work with someone with some familiarity. Liverpool will surely have higher aspirations than an eighth place finish, and Gotze could come in at a good bargain.
12 Leicester City - Arkadiusz Milik
What can you add to a club that shocked the world this season, as the most improbable league winners in perhaps the history of the game? Well, if Leicester City look to repeat as champions or at least remain in contention, they can't sit on their laurels.
11 Middlesbrough - Alex Pritchard
Middlesbrough have earned themselves promotion into the Premier League next season and they will have to add to their lineup if they intend to stay there.
Young and hungry domestic players with a point to prove often prove a recipe for success in the Premier League, and Tottenham midfielder Alex Pritchard certainly meets those criteria. The 23-year-old is unlikely to see much first team football at White Hart Lane, and Middlesbrough are crying out for a creative midfielder who can play either through the middle or in wide areas. The move would make sense for both Middlesbrough and Tottenham.
10 Manchester United - Zlatan Ibrahimovic
A little predictable, perhaps, and while a 34-year-old may seem a little short-termist, there are a number of reasons why Zlatan Ibrahimovic would be the ideal signing for Manchester United. One is his sheer ability; 50 goals last season represented the Swedes best ever return, and evidence he is still a world class forward. Another is that he's a born winner and a talisman, his influence and appetite could be as important as his ability, and spur the Red Devils on to their first serious success since the departure of Alex Ferguson.
His agent, Mino Raiola has opened up a little on where he feels his star client should go:
I have already decided, now it is up to him. We will see. They are really busy with the Euro. Out of respect for the Euro, the country and the coach, he should concentrate on that.”
9 Manchester City - John Stones
8 Southampton - Hakim Ziyech
For over six months now Hakim Ziyech has been talked about as a potential signing for Southampton. He has been described as the ideal replacement for Sadio Mane, but even if the Senegalese winger remains at Saint Mary's, Ziyech would be an excellent acquisition. Due to financial trouble, FC Twente were relegated last season, and Ziyech will almost certainly leave the club, and is their most valuable asset. He has scored 32 goals in 72 games over the last two seasons for Twente, and the Saints have had success buying from the Netherlands in recent years, making Ziyech look an even more likely recruit.
7 Stoke City - Neven Subotic
Most Stoke City supporters would agree that the club is in need of a new central defender. While Ryan Shawcross is consistently superb, he had injury problems last season, and none of his partners or replacements have been entirely convincing. While Subotic himself has had injury problems in recent years, he is a top class defender with tremendous experience at the highest level. Stoke have made a habit of signing players with history at top clubs recently (Arnautovic, Afellay, Bojan, Imbula, Shaqiri), and on that front, Subotic would certainly fit the bill.
6 Sunderland - Rachid Ghezzal
5 Swansea - Wilfried Bony
4 Tottenham - Vincent Janssen
3 Watford - Juan Jesus
This one seems pretty unlikely given Chelsea's recent interest in Inter Milan defender Juan Jesus, but Watford's intent on signing the Brazilian has been strongly reported and stranger things have happened. A regular at Inter for three straight seasons, Jesus played only 14 league games last season. The Brazilian international can play either at left back or in central defence and would seriously bolster Watford's strength at the back.
2 West Brom - Nathan Redmond
Nathan Redmond is surely going to sign for a Premier League club this summer, but whoever does secure his signature is likely to have to spend some serious money. Norwich know better than anyone else the talents of the 22-year-old, but will struggle to hold on to a player who is so obviously good enough to play at Premier League level. West Brom is coming off a 14th place finish and only finished one point ahead of two teams below them. That's not much of a gap from relegation territory. Redmond would help them avoid that area.
1 West Ham - Batshuayi/Benteke
The only club with a dual entry, we couldn't pick between two Belgians as to who'd make the better signing at West Ham. The Hammers have cash to burn and will want a marquee signing as they move into the Olympic Stadium, with a striker almost certain to join the club. Batshuayi is the player in the better form, whilst Benteke has proven himself in the Premier League. Batshuayi is pacy with an eye for goal, whilst Benteke has great strength and can be unplayable at times. Either would represent excellent signings for West Ham.
West Ham wasn't far off of being in the top four of the Premier League and they could make that jump with a big signing like one of these two. We'll have to see if they'd be willing to pay that price.
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