No other league in the world spends quite like the Premier League does and the same is true this summer. The transfer window is in full-swing after the curtain was drawn on another enthralling campaign in 2022/23. Big clubs are up to their usual tricks with plenty of blockbuster signings and lavish spending just over a month into the window and no signs of slowing down. Across England’s top-flight, clubs will be trying to sign those key players who could make all the difference to their fortunes in 2023/24 and several have already made huge strides in doing just that. Here’s our look at some of the best transfers of the 2023 summer window so far.
Declan Rice to Arsenal
While this deal is still technically not across the line yet, it is all but done after the Gunners and Irons reached a full agreement for Rice to make the move to North London with the England international expected to complete a medical and finalize personal terms in the next few days, if not sooner. The 24-year-old has made clear his aspirations to test his mettle in Europe’s elite club competition and Arsenal are the perfect club to facilitate that ambition. Not only will the midfielder remain in London as he previously alluded to as a priority, but from Arsenal’s perspective they gain a type of player Mikel Arteta is in desperate need of. His off the ball workrate is second to none. He made 79 tackles last season and more interceptions than anyone else in the league with 63, and better still is his ability to recycle the ball. With more creative ability than Granit Xhaka and a better defensive mind than Thomas Partey, his addition significantly improves Arsenal’s midfield and propels the Gunners into the title picture yet again for the 2023/24 campaign.
Kai Havertz to Arsenal
Sticking with the Gunners, many would’ve been confused when Arteta made a move for the German international but the Spaniard might yet find value in the 24-year-old where Chelsea could not. Havertz did not hit the heights expected of him with the Blues, but then again, that’s true of many of the league’s best players; just look at Kevin De Bruyne and Mo Salah for proof of that. Arsenal play a style under Arteta that could utilize his best attributes while minimizing his weaknesses. At his core Havertz is a player with excellent movement, fantastic spacial awareness and perfect timing of his runs, all of which could see him flourish in a more creative role alongside or even behind Gabriel Jesus up front. More than that, his positional flexibility offers the versatility that Arteta has been looking for; an attacking option that improves his squad depth and offers something different in front of goal to what he already has. The Gunners might yet add more names to their attacking lineup with Dusan Vlahovic still at 14/1 to join the Gunners according to paypal betting sites, but for the time being they’ve opted for Havertz. £65 million seems like a steep fee given his output at Stamford Bridge but the playmaker has more than enough talent to make good on the asking price and prove Arteta’s doubters wrong once again.
Alexis Mac Allister to Liverpool
After the Reds halted their pursuit of Jude Bellingham things looked bleak for the Merseyside club, but Klopp’s early move for the Argentine World Cup winner assured them there was no reason for concern. In hindsight, it was an inspired decision. Acquiring the 24-year-old midfielder from Brighton for just £35 million is an absolute steal. He was the most important cog in Robert De Zerbi’s machine on the south coast and helped the Seagulls claim a European spot for the first time in the club’s history. More to the point though, he will slot in perfectly to Klopp’s reformed system. A tactical tweak towards the backend of last season gave Trent Alexander-Arnold a bit more freedom to press forward in attack and Mac Allister’s ability to drop a bit deeper to receive the ball and pick a pinpoint pass will offer Trent the ability to move forward down his channel more. The England defender’s effectiveness in his new role is obvious, contributing two goals and seven assists in the short time since the change was made, and Mac Allister will only help Trent add to those numbers next season, as well as adding a few of his own.
Youri Tielemans to Aston Villa
After qualifying for the Europa Conference League on the final day of the season Unai Emery has been active in the market looking for ways to improve his squad ahead of their European journey, and made a strong start with the signing of the Belgian international on a free. The 26-year-old was looking for a new club after the total capitulation of the Foxes last season saw them relegated. While he has not hit the heights of previous seasons in years gone by, he still possesses all the credentials to be one of the most complete midfielders in the Premier League. The Belgian is excellent on the ball, a classy playmaker with the ability to pick the perfect pass at the right moment and even when below his best last season, his distribution stats were still significantly better than any midfielder currently on Villa’s books. With Ollie Watkins making darting runs in attack and Tielemans slotting picturesque through balls for the Englishman to run onto while posing his own threat from long range, expect Villa to open up plenty of defences next season.
Mateo Kovacic to Manchester City
City’s historic treble-winning season in 2022/23 goes to show that the Blues are dominating the English top-flight and this signing only serves to make them stronger. In the 29-year-old Croatian international, City are acquiring one of the standout midfielders in the league and all for the meager price of £25 million. With Ilkay Gundogan heading for the exit door, Kovacic will likely slot into that attacking midfield role next to Kevin De Bruyne and do so perfectly, if not improve upon the German international’s output. Kovacic managed to do just that in terms of touches and passes completed per 90 minutes in a side that finished 12th in the league last campaign, it only stands to reason that with better personnel to work off of that those numbers will rise. His supreme control of the ball and ability to recycle it quickly in tight spaces makes him an excellent addition to Pep Guardiola’s side and a standout transfer so far this summer.
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