Posted by News Express | 11 September 2021 | 327 times
The summer transfer window ended on August 31 in Europe. As usual, it was a season of high expectations in which good business was transacted, with some players making permanent moves and others being engaged on loan. We are aware that there were shock moves here and there, some anticipated ones never materialized.
It was strange that with a year left in Kylian Mbappe’s contract with PSG, the French club rejected a whopping $200m offer from Real Madrid for the France international. Harry Kane wanted out of Tottenham Spurs, but, despite huge interest from Manchester City, the England captain remains a Spurs player.
After the capture of £100 million England international, Jack Grealish, the Citizens failed in their bid to get Kane just as they failed to hook Cristiano Ronaldo, who decided to rejoin his old club Manchester United. It is a big plus for United who were looking for more bite in their attack. One interesting feature about this summer’s transfer window was the move of Ronaldo and Messi which made the entire window special.
We believe PSG landed themselves undoubtedly one of the best players on the planet in Lionel Messi. Although the Argentina captain is 34, he’s still a world-class player and has a lot left to give in the round leather game. It was a surprise that Messi after many years of service and loyalty to Barcelona left at the time he did and also for the French Ligue 1 and not Germany, England or Italy. We recall Antoine Griezmann moved from Barcelona to Atletico Madrid for €120 million in 2019. In the just-concluded window, Barca loaned the same player back to title rivals Atletico for ¤10 million, with an obligation to sign him permanently for around €40 million. We see this as a strange one, because a direct rival has been strengthened. This is coming after the exit of Messi and it is dangerous. Luuk De Jong with 19 goals in 94 games moved from Sevilla to Barca.
Coach Ronald Koeman wanted a No. 9 and he got one, though Barca fans won’t be overly excited with this addition. De Jong will do a good job. Eduardo Camavinga moved from Rennes to Real Madrid. The French club lost their star player for $35 million. Real will be happy they have managed to land one of Europe’s top prospects on the cheap and ahead of their rivals. After Sergio Ramos left Real Madrid on a free transfer, the La Liga powerhouse again sold Raphael Varane to Manchester United for ¤41 million. United needed a central defender and now they have one of the world’s best.
They should view the transfer fee as a bargain, given what the 28-year-old World Cup winner brings in experience. It’s a top signing. Also, Emerson Royal moved from Barca to Tottenham. Barcelona probably came out of this one slightly better because of the money (£21.4 million) but Tottenham have landed a good player, who impressed with Brazil at Copa America, but it’s still a fair amount to spend on a rightback. Tammy Abraham’s future at Chelsea came under threat after striker Romelu Lukaku returned to the club from Inter Milan for ¤115 million. With 30 goals in 79 games over the past two seasons, the 23-year-old needed to prove himself more.
He moved to Roma for ¤40 million. For Lukaku, he is a much better player than the youngster who struggled at Chelsea between 2011 and 14. Chelsea had already spent ¤63 million on Timo Werner last season and their first choice for a striker in the window was clearly Erling Haaland, who won’t leave Dortmund until next summer at the earliest. But, we believe Lukaku is a perfect top-man for the Blues; he will be a huge success in the Premier League and is a class act.
It is important to look at the return of Ronaldo and Lukaku as an exciting one for the English Premier League, merchandising and the fans generally. Before these two moves, Messi had shifted attention to the French league following his move to PSG. Transfer evaluation cannot be complete without the surprise no-show experienced by Nigeria’s Paul Onuachu of Genk.
He scored over 30 goals and won the Ebony boot in Belgium. It is a surprise that Onuachu, along with Italy-based Simy Nwankwo, Wilfred Ndidi of Leicester and Moses Simon, voted best player at Nantes, failed to attract lucrative offers.
The Nigerian stars need to be educated on how to get the right agents and other direct personal staff members to boost their careers. Football is much more than what we see in 90 minutes on the field. Nigerians should learn to do what their colleagues are doing in terms of career management. As we continue to enjoy the new season, it is expected that many of the movements recorded during the transfer window will add to the overall glamour of the football season this term.
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