Top Five Premier League Summer Signings
With the start of the Premier League season almost upon us, many eyes will focus on the new arrivals come the start of the season. This summer has seen the usual influx of exotic signings from abroad and below are, in the humble opinion of the FREEbets.org.uk team, the top five summer deals so far.
5. Davy Klaassen – Ajax to Everton - £23.6 million
Not exactly one from the bargain bucker but in this age of hyper-inflated transfer fees, the acquisiton of a Dutch international and Ajax captain for under £24 million could prove astute. Davy Klaassen's arrival at Goodison Park may have gone slightly under the radar in comparison to the return of Wayne Rooney but he could prove far more important to Everton in the coming campaign. A real goal threat from midfield, the 24-year-old notched 20 goals in all competitions as he led his side to the Europa League final where they were eventually beaten by Manchester United.
His new boss and fellow countryman Ronald Koeman has heralded the signing praising his leadership, creativity and goal-scoring ability. With Ross Barkley's future in doubt, Klaassen could be a ready-made replacement in the Blues midfield.
4. Javier Hernandez – Bayer Leverkusen to West Ham - £16 million
West Ham have seemed to struggle for a consistent striker for years now, perhaps even dating back to when Carlos Tevez was strutting his stuff at Upton Park. Andy Carroll's constant injury problems have further deprived the Hammers of that potent threat and Slaven Billic has sought to address that issue this summer with the acquisiton of Chicharito. The Mexican international became a cult-figure during his spell at Manchester United, including bagging 20 goals in his debut campaign. He was a key figure in the latter stage of Sir Alex Ferguson's reign, popping up with a number of crucial goals often from the subs bench.
However he struggled to establish himself under both David Moyes and Louis van Gaal and eventually left Old Trafford to move to Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga. An average of a goal every other game in Germany, prompted West Ham to splash the cash to bring him back to the English top flight and at £16 million it looks a good deal to us. Not the most technically gifted of footballers, the 29-year-old is however a natural goal scorer and that is something that the Hammers' faithful have craved in recent seasons. You would expect at the least for Hernandez to reach double figures this season and in tandem with the likes of Manuel Lanzini, Michail Antonio and Marko Arnautovic, West Ham should possess a much greater threat going forward this season.
3. Jermain Defoe – Sunderland to Bournemouth - Free transfer
Forget the exploits of N'golo Kante and his Chelsea team-mates last season, Defoe some how managed to score 15 Premier League goals for Sunderland - That's almost Balon d'Or worthy stuff! All jokes aside, Defoe's form for the beleagurerd North-East outfit saw him fire his way back in to the England fold at the ripe old age of 34. He even managed to score against Lithuania proving he's still got something to offer just yet. He was always unlikely to hang around at Sunderland following their relegation and it was Bournemouth who secured his signature, bringing him back to the club where enjoyed a spell on loan in the 2000-2001 season.
Defoe thrived in his first spell down on the South Coast, scoring in 10 consecutive matches and Eddie Howe will be hoping he can pick up where he left off all those years ago. The Cherries are an attack minded side under Howe and one would imagine that Defoe will get plenty of chances in front of goal. With better service than he was getting at Sunderland, playing in a side with more confidence and superior quality going forward, there's nothing to suggest that Defoe won't keep up the form he has shown in recent years.
2. Sandro Ramirez – Malaga to Everton - £5 million
The second new Everton arrival to find himself on this list, is perhaps testament to the recruitment of the Goodison Park club this summer but Sandro looks as though he could prove a real bargain. A product of the Barcelona academy, the 22-year-old played over 30 games at the Camp Nou before joining Malaga in search of regular first-team football. In his one and only season at La Rosaleda he scored 14 La Liga goals including a memorable one in a win over his against his former club.
An exciting young striker, it's quite astonishing that the Toffees were able to get him for such a small fee but such is the nature of the release clauses at Spanish clubs. For Malaga he scored a real variety of different goals and was able to perfectly link the front-line to the midfield, to such an extent he was an absolutely pivotal for the Andalusians. In the 11 games he did not start last season, Malaga only managed to win one. Romelu Lukaku's departure is sure to hit Everton this summer but if Sandro can find his feet early on, he could go some way to filling the void of the big Belgian.
1. Sead Kolasinac – Schalke to Arsenal - Free Transfer
All the fanfare around Arsenal's summer signings has been around Alexandre Lacazette. The arrival of a prolific striker is always going to gets fans tounges wagging but the £52 million signing of the Frenchman does not appear to be the best piece of business done by Arsene Wenger in the window. Instead the capture of Bosnian international left-back Sead Kolasinac from Schalke on a free transfer could well prove the signing of the summer.
Kolasinac has all the credentials to be a real cult figure at the Emirates. A strong and powerful defender who is not afraid of a tackle and loves to get forward, he was named in the Bundesliga team of the year last season. Given Arsenal began experimenting with a three at the back at the end of last season, the 24-year-old will be vital for his versatility. He can play at centre back and also as the left-wing back as well as a left back in a regular back four so he'll give Wenger plenty of options.
He marked his Arsenal debut with an impressive display in the Community Shield against Chelsea after coming off the bench. After a number of surges down the left wing, it was the Bosnian who headed in Arsenal's equaliser before the Gunners went on to win on penalties. If that performance is anything to go by, Kolasinac will be one of the signings of the season.