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Ranking 5 Premier League clubs with the worst summer transfer window (2021-22)

Ben White arrived at Arsenal for £50 million.
Ben White arrived at Arsenal for £50 million.
Aditya Duse
ANALYST

The Premier League transfer window slammed shut on the 31st of August, so clubs will now have to work with their current squads until at least January.

Teams in Europe's other leagues were not able to spend much because of the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, But the Premier League continued to flex its financial muscle, with clubs spending more than £1 billion during the transfer window.

That saw plenty of high-profile players arriving in the Premier League during the summer transfer window. Manchester United signed Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and Cristiano Ronaldo, while Chelsea brought in Romelu Lukaku and Saul Niguez.

While many teams in the Premier League managed to fill the holes in their rosters, not all were able to address their most important needs. These clubs brought in rather questionable players to fill in their deficient positions.

So without any further ado, let's take a look at the five Premier League clubs with the worst summer transfer window this summer


#5 Manchester City

City only managed to bring in Jack Grealish during the transfer window
City only managed to bring in Jack Grealish during the transfer window

Manchester City smashed the British transfer record when they signed Jack Grealish from Aston Villa for £100 million early in the transfer window. The former Villa captain has already impressed with a goal and an assist in his first three Premier League games with City.

However, Guardiola’s number one priority was bringing in a top striker and a long-term replacement for Sergio Aguero.

The Argentine departed the club this summer. With no replacement brought in, the Premier League champions now face the prospect of goals drying up. Pep Guardiola was dead set on bringing Harry Kane to City, only for Tottenham Hotspur chairman Daniel Levy putting a spanner in the Spaniard's plan.

City looked likely to bring in Cristiano Ronaldo before the Portuguese sealed a return to the red half of Manchester.

On the departure front, the likes of Raheem Sterling and Bernardo Silva were reportedly seeking an exit from City this summer. But the club didn't sanction sales for any of them.

City are now entering the season without an out-and-out goalscorer. It seems clear Guardiola does not trust Gabriel Jesus as a No 9. They have also failed to offload players who wanted to leave. So this could be a transfer window the Premier League champions could eventually regret.


#4 Liverpool

Ibrahima Konate was the only major signing at Liverpool this summer
Ibrahima Konate was the only major signing at Liverpool this summer

Many Liverpool fans have been left fuming with the lack of signings made during the transfer window this summer.

On the one hand, the Reds managed to acquire one of the most promising centre-backs in Europe. They brought in Ibrahima Konate from Leipzig, meaning last season's defensive meltdown is unlikely.

But other new signings have been thin on the ground, with Liverpool instead focusing on tying down their first-team stars to new deals. Jordan Henderson, Alisson Becker, Fabinho, Andy Robertson, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Virgil van Dijk have all penned fresh contracts with the club.

However, Liverpool are looking particularly light in the attacking third, given that both Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane will be absent during the Africa Cup of Nations. The former Premier League champions also did not prioritise cover for Alexander-Arnold in defence.

Liverpool also struggled to shift their fringe players during the transfer window, with Divock Origi, Takumi Minamino and Nathaniel Phillips still in the club’s books.

With Liverpool failing to strengthen their squad, there's a sense that a lack of depth could adversely impact them during the business end of the league season.

#3 Wolverhampton Wanderers

Wolves do not look to have strengthened enough in the transfer window.
Wolves do not look to have strengthened enough in the transfer window.

Wolves have impressed in part during the start of the Premier League season. But three defeats showed the team should have strengthened more in the transfer window.

Wolves continued their trend of signing young Portuguese starlets, so the deal to bring in Francisco Trincao from Barcelona was well received by the fans. Hwang Hee-chan also joined on loan. The South Korean could be explosive, as he showed at RB Salzburg alongside Erling Haaland and Takumi Minamino.

Wolves also managed to keep hold of Ruben Neves and Adama Traore despite both being linked with moves away to rivals during the transfer window. Yet the club failed to agree terms with Lille over a deal for Renato Sanches. Moreover, none of Kieffer Moore, Sven Botman or Duje Caleta-Car arrived on deadline day.

The Premier League side failed to secure late additions in midfield and at centre-back. So fans could be disappointed by the club's activities in the transfer window this summer.


#2 Newcastle United

Another Premier League season of struggles beckons for Newcastle United.
Another Premier League season of struggles beckons for Newcastle United.

Newcastle United did not have a lot of cash to spend, yet manager Steve Bruce was eager to make Joe Willock a permanent signing. The youngster impressed on loan last season. So a £22 million deal with Arsenal was struck to get the transfer over the line.

But frustration still lingers around Tyneside that Newcastle could have missed an opportunity to improve on their 12th-placed Premier League finish of last season.

A string of fringe players left during the transfer window after the end of their contracts. But the Toons did not manage to find adequate cover for Allan Saint-Maximin and Callum Wilson, who have both struggled with injuries.

Newcastle also failed in their pursuit to add another centre-back. A potential move for Valencia’s Mouctar Diakhaby eventually amounted to nothing. Neither Leicester City’s Hamza Choudhury and Arsenal’s Ainsley Maitland-Niles arrived to plug the club’s hole in midfield either.

So another season of struggles beckons for the Magpies, whose fate in the Premier League could depend on the form and fitness of Saint-Maximin and Wilson.


#1 Arsenal

Arsenal have been the highest spenders in the transfer window.
Arsenal have been the highest spenders in the transfer window.

Arsenal finished the transfer window with the highest spend and net spend in Europe. Nevertheless, there still remains plenty of unrest at the Emirates following a nightmare start to the Premier League season.

Mikel Arteta and Edu opted to invest in young players with potential during the transfer window. The business represents a big gamble for the north London side. That's because they are looking further away from the Premier League's top four despite their massive spending.

The club managed to bring in Ben White from Brighton for £50 million while also sealing a deal for the talented Martin Odegaard. But other activities raise questions: Aaron Ramsdale was bought in on a £30 million deal to provide competition for Bernd Leno, a year after selling Emiliano Martinez to Aston Villa for far less.

Granit Xhaka was also given a new contract despite seemingly being on his way out this summer. But Arteta did manage to offload Willian and Hector Bellerin.

Arteta has spent in access of £140 million in the transfer window. But questions still remain whether any of their new signings could significantly improve the Premier League side. The Spaniard is already in the firing line after Arsenal lost their opening three games. So their big spending this summer has put the manager under more pressure.

Edited by Bhargav

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