London: Premier League teams have spent more than $2.5 billion on players in a record outlay during European football’s off-season transfer window, leaving rival leagues across the continent in their wake.
They’re far from finished.
Friday is deadline day in the transfer market and many of England’s top teams are still looking to do business to finalise the reshaping of their squads for the first half of the season.
Midfielders are the priority
That includes English champion Manchester City, who signed Portugal midfielder Matheus Nunes from Wolverhampton and sold winger Cole Palmer to Chelsea.
Central midfielders are priorities for Liverpool and Manchester United, who are also looking for defensive reinforcements. Tottenham are getting some help up front by agreeing with Nottingham Forest on a reported fee of £45 million ($57 million) for 22-year-old Wales international Brennan Johnson.
Brighton, meanwhile, completed one of the most exciting deals of the window to bring in 20-year-old Spain winger Ansu Fati on a season-long loan from Barcelona.
Clubs are also eager to get rid of some fringe players to reduce the size of the squads, so expect outgoings at Chelsea and Tottenham in a rare season when they won’t be playing in Europe.
United bring in injury cover
United signed left back Sergio Reguilon on loan from Tottenham and goalkeeper Altay Bayindir on a transfer from Fenerbahce to back up Andre Onana. Reguilon arrives as cover for Luke Shaw, who is out with a long-term injury.
Premier League clubs spent in excess of $2.2 billion in the 2022 transfer window in a show of financial strength fuelled by income from huge global broadcasting deals worth about £10 billion ($11.8 billion) over three seasons.
This year’s spree tops that and it has been fronted again by Chelsea, whose spending on players could surpass an unprecedented $500 million in a single window. The club spent a combined $630 million across the last two windows, who were the first under their new American ownership.