This year’s summer transfer window ended on Thursday. Teams will now play with their current group of players until after the World Cup in January. Multiple important transfers across the Premier League took place during this summer.
Throughout the transfer window players such as Erling Haaland, Darwin Nunez, Gabriel Jesus, Raheem Sterling, and Antony were the main focus. However, there were some excellent transfers that didn’t get as much attention.
Tyrell Malacia, Manchester United
Tyrell Malacia was the first signing of the Erik ten Hag era for Manchester United this summer. The 23-year-old left-back joined the club from Feyenoord for a transfer fee of $16.5 million.
Malacia was expected to be Luke Shaw’s backup for Manchester United this season after Alex Telles left the club on loan at Sevilla. Shaw has been one of the team’s most important players over the last few seasons, starting in 19 Premier League games in 2021-22 and in 30 games in the prior season.
In addition, Shaw was one of the best players during Euro 2020. He scored the opening goal of the final of the tournament and played in all but one of England’s games at the tournament.
Malacia joined Manchester United after playing almost 100 games in the Eredivisie, where he was a very good and very consistent player at Feyenoord.
However, his transfer to Manchester United became overshadowed by the club’s ongoing negotiations with Barcelona regarding Frenkie de Jong, and the club’s other summer transfers including Lisandro Martinez and Christian Eriksen.
As expected, Malacia began the season as Shaw’s backup. He played one minute of Manchester United’s opening day loss against Brighton & Hove Albion and the second half of the team’s embarrassing 4-0 defeat against Brentford.
Since the Brentford game, Malacia has started three consecutive games after Erik ten Hag decided to make adjustments to the team. Manchester United have won all three of those games, and have kept two clean sheets during that time.
Malacia and Martinez have combined to play excellent defense alongside Raphael Varane and Diogo Dalot.
As a result, Malacia could be one of the best signings of the summer transfer window. After only five games he has become an important part of Ten Hag’s starting lineup despite the fact that Shaw has previously been one of the Premier League’s best left-backs.
Cheick Doucoure, Crystal Palace
22-year-old midfielder Cheick Doucoure signed with Crystal Palace this summer after the club agreed to a $24.86 million transfer fee with his former club Lens.
Crystal Palace signed Doucoure partially due to needing to sign a midfielder after the end of Conor Gallagher’s loan with the club. Doucoure has immediately become one of Crystal Palace’s most important players during the first few weeks of the season.
Doucoure has started all five of Crystal Palace’s games in central midfield, and according to FotMob, he has averaged a 7.06 match rating, fourth best on the team so far this season.
As Patrick Vieira continues to emphasize the team becoming more attacking and possession-based, Doucoure should continue to improve in midfield.
Throughout much of the season, Doucoure has played alongside Eberechi Eze, Michael Olise, and Jean-Philippe Mateta. Each player is 25 years old or younger, and as a result, Crystal Palace should continue to improve in the future as each player gets better.
Crystal Palace hoped to sign talented young players during the summer transfer window to improve their team now and in the future. Doucoure is an excellent signing that should help the club accomplish that goal.
Gavin Bazunu, Southampton
This summer, Southampton signed both Gavin Bazunu and Romeo Lavia from Manchester City. Both players could be excellent signings in the future, and Bazunu has been the team’s starting goalie during the first five games of the season.
Four of Southampton’s first five games were against Chelsea, Manchester United, Leicester City, and Tottenham. Despite that, Bazunu has played well, with only one game, against Leicester City, where he had a match rating lower than 7.0 according to FotMob.
During Southampton’s surprising win against Chelsea last Tuesday, Bazunu made three saves including an impressive save on a header from Armando Broja.
Against Manchester United the week prior Bazunu made an excellent save against Anthony Elanga, which kept the game tied at 0-0, although Manchester United would eventually go on to win.
At just 20 years old, Bazunu has an opportunity to continue to develop. The start of his career at Southampton has been very good, and he could be one of the best transfer signings made this summer.
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