The recent news that, in 2022, clubs in England had spent £1.78bn – at least three times more than clubs in any other country – on transfers, was not a major surprise. You only have to look at how that spending has continued into January 2023 to see how such a figure was reached.
It seems the Premier League’s elite have a bottomless pit of money into which to delve when the going gets tough. Mykhaylo Mudyrk and Noni Madueke’s recent moves to Chelsea are examples of that; although the past week has seen a club at the other end of the table flounder in the transfer and managerial market.
Step forward Everton. It has, in short, been a terrible week to be a Toffee. From another damaging defeat in the Premier League against West Ham, to the sacking of Frank Lampard and a slightly listless search for his replacement. Now Everton are struggling on the transfer front, too.
Anthony Gordon is desperate to clinch a move away, with Chelsea (for once) not at the front of the chase for his signature. Newcastle are closing in, instead, with the bookies putting them at 2/7 to become Gordon’s next club. It looks unlikely that he’ll be seen in a blue shirt again.
Everton also lost out to Tottenham in the scramble to sign Arnaut Danjuma on loan from Villarreal, while midfielder Amadou Onana is another player on Merseyside who is attracting interest from sides further up the table. Here’s the shock: Chelsea are reportedly interested, although Arsenal (9/4) are favourites to be his next club, according to the odds.
There is some light at the end of the Goodison Park tunnel, though. Hakim Ziyech is on their radar and is likely to move, given Chelsea’s need to trim a few from their gargantuan squad, while former West Ham and Stoke striker Marko Arnautovic – who came close to joining Manchester United in the summer – is also being linked to Everton.
On the managerial front, Marcelo Bielsa is the man wanted by the powerbrokers in the Goodison boardroom, however a breakthrough with the legendary Argentine does not seem imminent. He needs some convincing to take the job, with Ralph Hasenhuttl not keen and Sean Dyche seen as a ‘firefighter’ rather than a long-term option.
The bookmakers still think Dyche is the favourite (4/5 at the time of writing) with Bielsa 5/2 at best, but the situation is incredibly changeable right now.
That pretty much sums up the past few weeks when it has come to both transfers and managerial ins and outs. Clubs in the Premier League rarely stand still – for better or worse – and this January is the ultimate example.
Strap yourself in and let’s see what the rest of 2023 has in store. It won’t be boring.