It's been a little while hasn't it? Not too much has happened in the Premier League since the last round-up, but there have been some notable deals. This edition will be mostly concerned with England folks, so take those fancy foreign league inclinations elsewhere. A company been counting beans and inspecting football clubs with financial tools that are beyond the powers wielded in this corner of the internet realm. Deloitte's annual football money league revealed an impressive fourteen Premier League clubs are in the top thirty. Seventy percent are continental moneybags, and Stoke City are part of the cool crew! Cold, windy, and wet Tuesday nights at Stoke may not be so bad after all. Liverpool moved back into the top ten and are the fifth English club on the list behind Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, and Arsenal.
Now Premier League clubs, be good and say thank you to television rights.
It's not the same without him ...
A transfer window without Jim White, the yellow ticker of doom/boon, and Harry Redknapp disappoints this column. Sincerely. Go on Tony, give Harry some more cash to spend. He needs to do it, he must do it, he should do it ... why can't he do it? Please Tony, give an experienced manager a bit of happiness late on in his career. You've already given him quite a bit to spend already and you've put a lot of money into the club that has been wasted by managers? Oh. You should have said something then Tony; there's no sense in wasting oxygen is there?
However, offers still come rolling in for Tony and Harry. Who could it be? It's Alexandre Pato and he's been linked with a move to London. Could the former AC Milan player revitalise his career in England like Bojan Krkić? Possibly, but it won't be at one struggling West London club. According to Jamie Redknapp's dad, Alexandre Pato is not going to Queens Park Rangers.
I got offered him, someone rang yesterday, and today it's in the newspapers. He is obviously a good player and I am not being disrespectful to him but no, he is not the type of player we are looking for. I am sure he is a good player but he would not be for us. It is difficult when you are looking around the market at this time of year, it is not easy to find players. We are trying, we are looking round, but I could not say we are close to making any signings at the moment.
It's Alexandre Pato though. This is the kid who scored 50 goals in 102 league games for AC Milan before he turned 22. Injuries, form, decline, relegation scrap, adapting to a new league, financial burden, and all that sensible stuff may make this deal not worth a struggling club's time, but it's Alexandre Pato. Just do it. If a club's going to fail and get relegated, why not do it spectacularly entertaining the rest of us? 10 away defeats in 10 is a good start but, yes you guessed it ... it needs more Alexandre Pato. Psst, Liverpool! Do not mess up those guaranteed three points at Anfield.
Could be moving on ...
Being awestruck could become part of the routine of one Darren Fletcher if he joins Sam Allardyce at West Ham United. Tony Pulis is also sniffing around for West Bromwich Albion as the Premier League Manager of the Year seeks to build on a good start to life at his new club. More importantly, Big Sam said words on the deal and he was magnificent.
When he makes his mind up everyone will know.
That Sam Allardyce. Get round him.
Chelsea could get Douglas Costa, a Football Manager favourite for teams trying to break into the top four, instead of Fiorentina star Juan Cuardado. Mohamed Salah could be making his way for a Brazilian instead of a Colombian. Two different players but both potentially exciting for Chelsea fans, which makes this column desperately sad inside. Chelsea want to pay £20 million for a second Costa, but FC Shakhtar Donetsk want £30 million. Shall we just call it £25 million and shake sweaty hands? It could be funded by the departure of André Schürrle, but José Mourinho claimed the combination of a "phenomenal offer" and enthusiasm of the player to leave would be the only way it would happen. Wolfsburg are waiting José. Do it. Be champions.
Arsène Wenger has confirmed that Arsenal are trying to acquire the registration rights of Villarreal's Gabriel Paulista. Paulista is a centre back, 24-years-old, and is quite good. Wenger seems willing to pay the £15 million demanded and has already completed some business this month. 17-year-old midfielder Krystian Bielik has joined the North London club from Legia Warsaw. David de Gea could leave Manchester United for Real Madrid. The player's powerful agent, Jorge Mendes mentioned that "things change every five minutes" and clearly won't encourage his client to sign a new deal.
De Gea's contract will have a year to run at the end of the season, Real will offer £15 million when Manchester United scoff at a figure that's half the required amount for such a key player, and all parties will settle on a £22.5 million deal with £20 million of that guaranteed. There may be an option for Gareth Bale, a stand-off between player and club, unnecessary words through various mouthpieces, and a potential swap deal involving a surprisingly talented young player. The conclusion will be the same: David de Gea will join Real Madrid in the summer. Victor Valdes should be using his preparation time wisely between now and the summer.
Too late! They've gone ...
Wilfried Bony has moved to Manchester City from Swansea City just before starting for his country in the African Cup of Nations in a deal worth up to £28 million. That money has enabled Garry Monk's side to sign Kyle Naughton for £5 million from Tottenham Hotspur. Naughton is 26-years-old, which is surprising as he always seemed to be much younger than that. Or he plays like a player who still has a lot to learn, which is why Daniel Levy probably did a little jig when signing off on the deal. Swansea have also signed young Matt Grimes from Exeter for £1.8 million and the article linked points out that he is the League Two club's reigning player of the year, so you should know that too. Also, Nelson Oliveira has joined Swansea on loan until the end of the season and continues his wandering loan experience. This is just all about Swansea at the moment, but money makes things happen.
Leicester City have snapped up Andrej Kramarić from HNK Rijeka in a £9 million deal. The the promoted club paid an initial £7.5m, but add-ons are worth £1.5 million. Nigel Pearson was "delighted" with "relative authorities" who made the deal happen and the "extremely talented young footballer" himself. Let's hope he can trouble the likes of Tottenham, Arsenal, and Manchester United in the next couple of months. Chelsea wanted to buy him and transform him into another wandering loan ranger, but young Kramarić wanted to be free.
Martin Ødegaard has joined Real Madrid for a reported £2.3 million after training with numerous big European clubs,
collecting vital data for Real Madrid's hierarchy experiencing the atmosphere in different environments, before making his final decision wit the help of his father. In completely unrelated news, father Ødegaard (no relation) has been hired by Real Madrid as a youth coach. Don't sit there shaking your head in hate, congratulate Hans Erik Odegaard on passing his interview, displaying a solid ten-year work history, and working on restructured CV that highlighted his core strengths and generously rounded his best jobs off to the nearest year (as long as it was in the future).
Let's all take time to say goodbye to a column favourite, Manchester City's Matija Nastasić, who has joined Schalke 04 on loan until the end of the season. The Bundesliga club paid €2 million, took over the centre back's wages, and secured a purchase option in the loan deal. Goodbye
Dejan Matija, xoxo ...