football

The January Window So Far: 3 Deals That Have Caught the Eye

January 22, 2017

- Grant Whittington

Last summer, Premier League clubs set a new, summer spending record in response to Leicester City’s staggering title win. In fact, the previous mark of £870 million was superseded with six days remaining in the transfer window, with elite clubs such as Manchester United and Manchester City leading the charge.

While the January transfer window is unlikely to be as dramatic, there is a sense that several significant deals are yet to be completed before the 31st of the month. With continued speculation surrounding activity in the Chinese transfer market and a number of senior players struggling for game time at their clubs, this window may yet be one that generates a number of off-field talking points.

With this in mind, we thought we would recap the most intriguing deals that have been completed so far and how they may shape the course of the Premier League over the next five months…

Morgan Schneiderlin, Manchester United to Everton for £20 Million (Rising to £24 Million)

French international Morgan Schneiderlin never quite managed to make his mark at Old Trafford, as he struggled to showcase the necessary authority or passing ability to execute Louis Van Gaal’s possession based game. While many thought that Schneiderlin’s tenacious and energetic style may have been more suited to the philosophy of incoming manager Jose Mourinho, however, the Frenchman has failed to command a starting place or convince the Portuguese of his worth.

Schneiderlin’s move to Everton had therefore been in the pipeline for some time, with the only question mark surrounding the player’s price. Now that Toffees’ manager Ronald Koeman has got his man, however, the Blues have a talented and tough-tackling midfielder who can add some much needed steel to an experienced but physically fragile line-up.

With the deal worth a potential £24 million, however, Schneiderlin will need to adapt quickly if he is to justify his fee and command a regular, starting place.

Oscar, Chelsea to Shanghai SIPG for £60 Million

In case you hadn’t noticed the cash-rich Chinese Super League has taken the global transfer market by storm in recent times, with internationally-renowned stars such as Carlos Tevez and Ezequiel Lavezzi having already completed moves to Asia this season. At the beginning of the January window, Chelsea’s Brazilian forward Oscar also completed a big money move to Shanghai SIPG, commanding an incredible fee of £60 million and a weekly wage of £400,000 in the process.

Not only is this salary paid out after tax has been applied, but it also supersedes the wages earned by  the world’s top players such as Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Luis Suarez. This creates a huge threat to the appeal of the EPL, with Spanish striker Diego Coast the latest to have his head turned by a club from the Chinese Super League. Make no mistake; this may be the first of many similar deals to impact on the EPL in the near-term future, while it may not even be the last of this transfer window.

Jeffrey Schlupp, Leicester City to Crystal Palace for £12 Million

Finally, we come to an intriguing deal that has largely slipped beneath the radar as January has unfolded. This is the move of Leicester’s City utility player Jeffrey Schlupp, who has joined Sam Allardyce’s Crystal Palace revolution for an estimated £12 million. The forward, who has also performed diligently as a left wing-back during his time with the Foxes, has struggled for game time with the champions and will now lend his considerable experience to Palace’s likely relegation scrap.

Even in a transfer market that is increasingly out of control, however, £12 million remains a princely sum while it will be interest to see how Schlupp fits into Allardyce’s team. After all, the Eagles are blessed with talented wide players so Schulpp’s arrival may either see a change of shape for Palace for a shift to a more defensive-minded philosophy.

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