Once again, clubs up and down the country have been busy in the transfer market this summer. Euro 2012 provided a showcase for some of the best players in Europe, and clubs have been keen to snap up quality players to boost their squads for the coming season. So let’s run down the top 5 signings of the summer so far.
5. Eden Hazard (Lille to Chelsea)
The most expensive signing of the summer so far, Eden Hazard might be the difference between Chelsea winning the title or coming up short once again. At just 21 years old, this sparkling winger will provide creativity and movement that the critics have said Chelsea have been lacking. Signing for the defending European champions was the key for Chelsea luring him to Stamford Bridge, and much is expected of this exciting prospect.
4. Olivier Giroud (Montpellier to Arsenal)
Another Arsenal signing, this time Olivier Giroud. Giroud was the standout player for Montpellier last season, and with Arsene Wenger, as with Podolski, looking for an influx of goals this coming season, he might turn out to be the signing of the summer. Comparatively cheap at £12m, he might well be the replacement for RVP should he leave Arsenal.
3. Lukas Podolski (1. FC Köln to Arsenal)
Podolski has been one of the most lethal strikers in Germany for many years and Arsene Wenger may have pulled off a masterstroke in signing him for only £11m. If there is one area where Arsenal are lacking it is in striking power, relying heavily on Robin Van Persie who may or may not leave this summer. Podolski also brings a wealth of experience to a young Arsenal side that need to challenge for honours next season.
2. Paul Pogba (Manchester United to Juventus).
Pogba is one of the most talented young players to come from France in recent years, and one might have expected Manchester United to work hard to keep hold of him as they try to reclaim the Premier League title. However, Pogba was able to leave on a free transfer to Italian giants Juventus this summer. It will be interesting to see whether Fergie will regret this come the end of the season, or whether it will be another smart move by the most experienced manager in the league.
1. Wayne Bridge (Manchester City to Brighton-loan).
Whilw technically not a transfer, rather a loan move, Wayne Bridge to Brighton would hardly have been predicted by most people at the end of last season particularly with Manchester City crowned as Premier League champions for the first time. But Gus Poyet is a shrewd manager, and Bridge will add more quality to an emerging Brighton side looking to challenge for promotion to the top flight.