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Match Previews

Premier League Preview: 2016/17

11 August 2016


With the Premier League getting underway this weekend, we take a look at how the other teams have attempted to strengthen their squads on the eve of the big kick-off.


ARSENAL
After completing a £30 million deal for Granit Xhaka at the start of the window, Arsene Wenger has not yet attracted any more major signings to North London. Rob Holding will provide good defensive back up after his move from Bolton and Japanese striker Takuma Asano’s goal scoring exploits at the Olympics could give Arsenal fans reason to be optimistic about the young striker’s transfer.

Major ins: Granit Xhaka (Borussia Monchengladbach, undisclosed), Rob Holding (Bolton Wanderers, undisclosed), Takuma Asano (Hiroshima Sanfrecce, undisclosed)

Major outs: Mikel Arteta (released), Tomas Rosicky (released), Mathieu Flamini (released), Wellington Silva (Fluminense, undisclosed), Wojiech Szczesny (Roma, loan)


BOURNEMOUTH
The blow of losing star winger Matt Ritchie to Newcastle United was softened by the signing of young Liverpool winger Jordon Ibe on a four-year-deal. Former Palace man Glenn Murray is just one of seven players who will no longer be playing in a Bournemouth shirt next season.

Major ins: Nathan Ake (Chelsea, loan), Emerson Hyndman (Fulham, free), Lys Mousset (Le Havre, undisclosed), Lewis Cook (Leeds, undisclosed), Jordon Ibe (Liverpool, undisclosed), Brad Smith (Liverpool, undisclosed)

Major outs: Sylvain Distin (released), Tommy Elphick (Aston Villa, undisclosed), Matt Ritchie (Newcastle United, undisclosed), Stephane Zubar (released), Glenn Murray (Brighton & Hove Albion, loan), Lee Tomlin (Bristol City, undisclosed), Harry Cornick (Leyton Orient, loan)


BURNLEY
The returning Burnley have done some shrewd work in the transfer window this summer. The signing of Iceland star Johann Berg Gudmundsson from Charlton Athletic along with Jon Flanagan on loan from Liverpool will be sure to add talent to Sean Dyche’s side. However, the loss of midfielder Joey Barton to Rangers will need to be addressed by the Clarets.

Major ins: Jimmy Dunne (Manchester United, free), Johann Berg Gudmundsson (Charlton Athletic, undisclosed), Nick Pope (Charlton Athletic, undisclosed), Jon Flanagan (Liverpool, loan)

Major outs: Joey Barton (Rangers, free), Matt Gilks (Rangers, free), Matt Taylor (released), Michael Duff (retired), Josh Ginnelly (Walsall, loan)


CHELSEA
This transfer window has been a very productive one for Chelsea so far. New manager Antonio Conte has attracted top class talent to Stamford Bridge, with the signing of midfield engine N’Golo Kante from champions Leicester City and young Belgian forward Michy Batshuayi. This, combined with the fact they haven’t lost any big names yet, means that the Blues can be very happy with their business.

Major ins: Michy Batshuayi (Marseille, undisclosed), N’Golo Kante (Leicester City, undisclosed). 

Major outs: Lewis Baker (Vitesse Arnhem, loan), Nathan Ake (AFC Bournemouth, loan), Jeremie Boga (Granada, loan), Tomas Kalas (Fulham, loan), Kasey Palmer (Huddersfield Town, loan), Alex Kiwomya (Crewe Alexandra, undisclosed), Mohamed Salah (Roma, undisclosed), Tammy Abraham (Bristol City, loan)


EVERTON
New boss Ronald Koeman has been given money to spend by the Toffees hierarchy and he is wasting no time in spending it. With deals for Idrissa Gana Gueye and Maarten Stekelenburg already completed and Ashley Williams reportedly on their way, Everton’s squad is getting some serious talent through their doors. Despite these incomings, club stalwarts such as Leon Osman and Tim Howard have decided to move on from Goodison Park, as well as the transfer saga of John Stones finally resulting in a pricey move to Manchester City.

Major ins: Bassala Sambou (Coventry City, compensation fee), Chris Renshaw (Oldham Athletic, undisclosed), Maarten Stekelenburg (Fulham, undisclosed), Idrissa Gana Gueye (Aston Villa, undisclosed)

Major outs: Steven Pienaar (released), Leon Osman (released), Tony Hibbert (released), Tim Howard (Colorado Rapids, undisclosed), John Stones (Manchester City, undisclosed).


HULL CITY
With no manager and only 14 fit outfield players, Hull have some serious work to do before the start of the new season. Having signed just one player and lost star man Mohamed Diame to Newcastle United, the Tigers face an uphill battle to turn their transfer window around.

Major ins: Will Mannion (AFC Wimbledon,tribunal)

Major outs: Sone Aluko (released), Ryan Taylor (released), Mohamed Diame (Newcastle United, undisclosed)


LEICESTER CITY
The champions have added some serious depth with the prospect of Champions League football on the cards next season. Ahmed Musa is the highlight of multiple quality signings, as he will look to take some of the pressure off Jamie Vardy in terms of scoring goals. However, the big story is that N’Golo Kante, arguably their key player last season, has moved on and Nampalys Mendy will hope he can go some way to replicating the Frenchman’s brilliant form last term.

Major ins: Ron-Robert Zieler (Hannover 96, undisclosed), Luis Hernandez (Sporting Gijon, free), Raul Uche Rubio (Rayo Vallecano, undisclosed), Nampalys Mendy (Nice, undisclosed), Ahmed Musa (CSKA Moscow, undisclosed), Bartosz Kapustka (KS Cracovia, undisclosed).

Major outs: Andrej Kramaric (Hoffenheim, undisclosed), Mark Schwarzer (released), Paul Konchesky (released), Ryan Watson (released), Dean Hammond (released), Harry Panayiotou (released), N’Golo Kante (Chelsea, undisclosed), Joe Dodoo (Rangers, undisclosed), Michael Cain (Blackpool, loan), Hamza Choudhury (Burton Albion, loan)


LIVERPOOL
Having joined Liverpool last October, Jurgen Klopp has spent this summer tailoring the squad to his style of play. With a whopping 15 players being shown the door so far, Klopp has reinvested some of that money in Southampton attacker Sadio Mane and Dutch international Georginio Wijnaldum. After thrashing Barcelona 4-0 at Wembley in this season, Liverpool will hope to push for Champions League places once again this year, and their opening day trip to Arsenal should be an excellent test of their ability to compete with the big sides over the next 10 months.

Major ins: Joel Matip (Schalke, Free), Loris Karius (FSV Mainz 05, undisclosed), Sadio Mane (Southampton, undisclosed), Ragnar Klavan (Augsburg, undisclosed), Alex Manninger (Augsburg, free), Georginio Wijnaldum (Newcastle United, undisclosed)

Major outs: Joao Carlos Teixeira (Porto, free), Jerome Sinclair (Watford, undisclosed), Kolo Toure (released), Lawrence Vigouroux (Swindon Town, undisclosed), Jordan Rossiter (Rangers, free), Danny Ward (Huddersfield Town, loan), Jose Enrique (released), Samed Yesil (released), Sergi Canos (Norwich City, undisclosed), Martin Skrtel (Fenerbahce, undisclosed), Jordon Ibe (Bournemouth, undisclosed), Adam Bogdan (Wigan Athletic, loan), Joe Allen (Stoke City, £13 million), Brad Smith (Bournemouth, undisclosed), Jon Flanagan (Burnley, loan)


MANCHESTER CITY
Much like Jurgen Klopp, new City boss Pep Guardiola has invested a lot of money this summer into moulding the squad he inherited from Manuel Pellegrini into a side which can play the way he likes. Ilkay Gundogan will be a fantastic signing in the middle of pitch, and Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and John Stones are players who are destined for greatness. This combined with the fact that they have kept all their existing stars means that City fans can be more than satisfied with Pep’s first window in charge.

Major ins: Ilkay Gundogan (Borussia Dortmund, undisclosed), Nolito (Celta Vigo, undisclosed), Oleksandr Zinchenko (FC Ufa, undisclosed), Aaron Mooy (Melbourne City, undisclosed), Leroy Sane (Schalke, undisclosed), Gabriel Jesus (Palmeiras, undisclosed, will join in January 2017), Marlos Moreno (Atletico Nacional, undisclosed), John Stones (Everton, undisclosed)

Major outs: Martin Demichelis (released), Seko Fofana (Udinese, undisclosed), Aaron Mooy (Huddersfield Town, loan), Marlos Moreno (Deportivo La Coruna, loan)


MANCHESTER UNITED
Manchester United have been nothing short of spectacular in the transfer window so far. The world record signing of Paul Pogba and superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic made front page news all around the world, and Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Eric Bailly will undoubtedly be heavily involved in any success that the Red Devils have this year. These four players lining up under new boss Jose Mourinho could prove to make the 13-time Premier League winners a force to be reckoned with once again.

Major ins: Eric Bailly (Villarreal, undisclosed), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (PSG, free), Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Borussia Dortmund, undisclosed), Paul Pogba (Juventus, undisclosed)

Major outs: Tyler Reid (Swansea City, undisclosed), Victor Valdes (Middlesbrough, free), Jimmy Dunne (Burnley, free), Nick Powell (Wigan Athletic, free), Joe Rothwell (Oxford United, undisclosed), Ashley Fletcher (West Ham United, undisclosed), Guillermo Varela (Eintracht Frankfurt, loan)


MIDDLESBROUGH
Newly-promoted Middlesbrough have done some excellent business in the window this summer. New striker Alvaro Negredo is a proven goalscorer in the Premier League and Viktor Fischer is an exciting winger who is bound to cause full-backs problems around the country. Victor Valdes will add some much needed experience between the sticks and means that Boro can now boast a Champions League winner in their side. Nine signings have given themselves a good chance at establishing themselves as a Premier League side.

Major ins: Viktor Fischer (Ajax, undisclosed), Bernardo Espinosa (Sporting Gijon, undisclosed), Marten de Roon (Atalanta, undisclosed), Jordan McGhee (Heart of Midlothian, loan),  Victor Valdes (Manchester United, free), Antonio Barragan (Valencia, undisclosed), Alvaro Negredo (Valencia, loan), Gaston Ramirez (Southampton, undisclosed), Brad Guzan (Aston Villa, undisclosed)

Major outs: Jonathan Woodgate (released), Damia Abella (released), Rhys Williams (Perth Glory, free), Connor Ripley (Oldham, loan)


SOUTHAMPTON
Despite four new players arriving, this summer has been much like previous ones for the Saints in the fact that they have been forced to say goodbye to some star players as well as manager Ronald Koeman. Sadio Mane, Graziano Pelle and Victor Wanyama have all moved away from St Mary’s but Nathan Redmond and his blistering pace will help replicate what Mane was able to do, and Alex McCarthy will provide strong competition for Fraser Forster in goal. New boss Claude Puel is something of an unknown entity and it will be hard to know what to expect when playing the Saints this year.

Major ins: Nathan Redmond (Norwich City, undisclosed), Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (Bayern Munich, undisclosed), Alex McCarthy (Crystal Palace, undisclosed), Jeremy Pied (Nice, free).

Major outs: Gaston Ramirez (released), Kelvin Davis (retired), Juanmi (Real Sociedad, undisclosed), Victor Wanyama (Tottenham Hotspur, undisclosed), Sadio Mane (Liverpool, undisclosed), Jason McCarthy (Walsall, loan), Graziano Pelle (Shandong Luneng, undisclosed), Paulo Gazzaniga (Rayo Vallecano, loan).


STOKE CITY
This summer have been a fairly quiet one for the Potters. The signings of Joe Allen and Ramadan Sobhi will add some depth to the first team, but Marko Arnautovic penning a new contract at the newly-named Bet 365 Stadium will surely be their highlight of the window. Peter Odemwingie and Steve Sidwell leaving this summer shouldn’t be too costly to their hopes for the coming season.

Major ins: Ramadan Sobhi (Al Ahly, £5 million), Joe Allen (Liverpool, £13 million), Ryan Sweeney (AFC Wimbledon, undisclosed)

Major outs: Peter Odemwingie (released), Steve Sidwell (Brighton & Hove Albion, free)


SUNDERLAND
This summer has been something of a whirlwind for Sunderland. Few would have predicted that Sam Allardyce would be the one to succeed Roy Hodgson as England boss but in David Moyes they have an experience manager who knows how to win in the Premier League. No major signings will be a concern, however, due to the fact that a lot of players have left the Stadium of Light on a permanent basis.

Major ins: Papy Djilobodji (Chelsea, £8 million), Paddy McNair (Manchester United, £4.5 million), Donald Love (Manchester United, £1 million)

Major outs: Danny Graham (Blackburn Rovers, free), Steven Fletcher (Sheffield Wednesday, free), Wes Brown (released), Mikael Mandron (Eastleigh, free), Emanuele Giaccherini (Napoli, undisclosed), Santiago Vergini (Boca Juniors, undisclosed), Adam Matthews (Bristol City, loan), Will Buckley (Sheffield Wednesday, loan)


SWANSEA CITY
Swansea’s squad next season will look very different to the one that ended the last. Strikers Andre Ayew and Bafetimbi Gomis, have both left the club but they have reinvested very wisely in the acquisitions of Leroy Fer and Fernando Llorente and breking their club record to sign Borja Baston. However, the departure of inspirational skipper Ashley Williams to Everton is the biggest loss for the Welsh side.

Major ins: Leroy Fer (Queens Park Rangers, undisclosed), Mike van der Hoorn (Ajax, undisclosed), Tyler Reid (Manchester United, undisclosed), George Byers (Watford, free), Mark Birighetti (Newcastle Jets, free), Fernando Llorente (Sevilla, undisclosed), Borja Baston (Atletico Madrid, £15 million)

Major outs: Matthew Grimes (Leeds United, loan), Eder (Lille, undisclosed), Alberto Paloschi (Atalanta, undisclosed), Kyle Bartley (Leeds United, loan), Liam Shephard (Yeovil Town, loan), Matt Grimes (Leeds United, loan), Ryan Hedges (Yeovil Town, loan), Bafetimbi Gomis (Marseille, loan), Andre Ayew (West Ham United, £20.5 million), Ashley Williams (Everton, undisclosed)


TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR
After a disappointing end to what was a remarkable season last year, Maurcio Pochettino has only signed two players so far this summer. Having said that, both these players are excellent buys, with Vincent Janssen providing the back-up to Harry Kane which they’ve craved for two years and Victor Wanyama adding to their already stellar midfield. Their squad remains one of the youngest in the league and it will be interesting to see whether they can replicate the form of last year.

Major ins: Victor Wanyama (Southampton, undisclosed), Vincent Janssen (AZ Alkmaar, undisclosed)

Major outs: Filip Lesniak (Slovan Liberec, loan), Grant Ward (Ipswich Town, undisclosed), Federico Fazio (Roma, loan), Alex Pritchard (Norwich City, undisclosed)


WATFORD
This summer at Watford has been more about keeping their existing stars rather than buying more. The club have rejected some massive bids for Troy Deeney and Odion Ighalo, and will hope this will pay dividends in terms of goalscoring this season. Having said that, new manager Walter Mazzarri has added some fresh faces to the club; Juan Camilo Zuniga will hope to effectively replace Nathan Ake at left-back and record signing Isaac Success could form a lethal partnership with fellow Nigerian Ighalo in the forward positions.

Major ins: Jerome Sinclair (Liverpool, undisclosed), Christian Kabasele (Genk, undisclosed), Isaac Success (Granada, undisclosed), Juan Camilo Zuniga (Napoli, loan), Brice Dja Djedje (Marseille, undisclosed)

Major outs: Joel Ekstrand (released), Gabriele Angella (Udinese), George Byers (Swansea City, free), Jose Manuel Jurado (Espanyol, undisclosed), Almen Abdi (Sheffield Wednesday, undisclosed), Daniel Pudil (Sheffield Wednesday, undisclosed), Steven Berghuis (Feyenoord, loan)


WEST BROMWICH ALBION
Tony Pulis has released more first-team players this summer than he has brought in in the hope to rid of some deadwood from the squad. Victor Anichebe and Stephane Sessegnon, both heavily involved in the first team over the past few years, have both departed along with formed Manchester United goalkeeper Anders Lindegaard. Matt Phillips from Queens Park Rangers, remembered for his extraordinary 40 yard goal at Selhurst Park two seasons ago, will add some much needed flair to the attack and can be as destructive as anyone on his day. 

Major ins: Matt Phillips (Queens Park Rangers, undisclosed)

Major outs: Victor Anichebe (released, Stephane Sessegnon (released), Anders Lindegaard (released)


WEST HAM UNITED
With this season being the first one in the stunning new London Stadium, the Hammers have been trying to build a squad to match the pedigree of their new home. The signings of Andre Ayew, Gokhan Tore and Sofiane Feghouli will add firepower to their attack, and, most importantly, Dimitri Payet’s pledge to stay for at least another season means that West Ham have kept hold of their talisman.

Major ins: Toni Martinez (Valencia, undisclosed), Havard Nordtveit (Borussia Monchengladbach, free), Domigos Quina, Sofiane Feghouli (Valencia, free), Gokhan Tore (Besiktas, loan), Ashley Fletcher (Manchester United, undisclosed), Arthur Masuaku (Olympiacos, undisclosed), Andre Ayew (Swansea City, £20.5 million), Jonathan Calleri (Deportivo Maldonado, loan)

Major outs: Joey O’Brien (released), Elliot Lee (released), James Tomkins (Crystal Palace, £10 million)  


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