As teams look to bolster their squads in a last ditch effort, fans await with eagerness to see their club’s way of seeing out this unofficial holiday of footballing competition (albeit off the actual pitch). Some clubs clearly need to get a grip on, while others need to lose a grip on the money and go crazy. Any business is better than no business. Just ask Arsène Wenger.
Chelsea are miles ahead of the rest of the pack who need reinforcements. This is courtesy of Hull’s late flourish today, as the newbies got themselves Ryan Mason from Spurs for £13m and David Marshall from Cardiff City for an undisclosed fee.
Back to the Blues, Conte clearly needs more depth in the defensive positions, as well as an addition in the striking department. Logic will spit out that since Loic Remy was allowed to leave on loan to Crystal Palace earlier today, that the execs have a plan in place to bring in some other forward. However, the Stamford Bridge faithful know better than to place trust in the insatiable Roman Abramovich and his equally insatiable board. The two are a marriage made in hellfire as far as the fans are concerned, with the former not concerned about anything but flair, while the latter is much more worried about signing former players and young Belgians/Brazilians.
Although the market has gone crazy this summer (shocking, I know) there is reason to believe that Abramovich’s purse has not. The Blues have been reluctant to spend big (I mean big, big) since the huge failure that is Fernando Torres decided to kick a ball about inside their stadium.
Fast forward to the rumours circulating the Blues today, it again looks like a failed project, as Conte is only able to satisfy himself with £20m man Marcos Alonso, who plays as a full-back. The even more surprising bit of news were the rumours that linked David Luiz with a shock return to the Blues in a £30m deal. Alonso is expected to finalize his move tomorrow (again, shocking, I know, given tomorrow is deadline day) according to multiple reports. However, the David Luiz one…er…’unsure’ is probably the best way to describe it.
It is highly unlikely that the London club will be able to lure a striker before the clock strikes midnight tomorrow, as any late move over a capable forward would require lengthy talks.
Looking on past Chelsea, it is, surprisingly enough, Liverpool, who need to get some business done. Klopp isn’t fooling anybody with public heaps of praise on Alberto Moreno and then dropping him come gameday. James Milner may be many things. But he is not a left-back. Even though Klopp has repeatedly denied any further incomings for the Reds, it hard to imagine the German planning on giving lengthy informational courses to Moreno regarding the art of defending. It would also visibly improve their shape in defence (once more, shocking, I know) if they did sign a proper left-back, as Milner isn’t as positionally aware and tends to drift infield much more often than necessary.
The Reds have been linked to Jonas Hector, who had a splendid outing in Euro 2016, however, those links have not been as present in the last few days. Fear not, though, if you are a Reds fan, just ask a Gunner for some practice in the craft of optimism. I’m positively certain they’ve had plenty of opportunities to fine-tune their skills in that department. And also banking on some of the generosity they’ve shown Wenger, I’d be surprised if they decided to reject your offer.