Five big signings from Deadline Day 2.0

The English Premier League’s transfer window may have been shut for three weeks now but the rest of Europe has only just closed its doors. We take a look at the biggest movers across the continent on their deadline day.

Potentially the biggest monetary move of the day was for Argentinean striker Mauro Icardi who completed a loan move from Inter Milan to Paris Saint-Germain.

The former Sampdoria frontman fell out of favour at the San Siro in February when former manager Luciano Spalletti stripped him of the captaincy role.

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Icardi didn’t play for several weeks after as he continued his battle with the clubs hierarchy and failed to win over new boss Antonio Conte.

Romelu Lukaku’s arrival spelt the end for Icardi’s six-year stay in Milan and he completed his move which involves a €5 million loan fee with a €65 million option to buy.

The French champions were keen to bolster their front-line after injuries to Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe in recent weeks left them short up top.

Whilst Icardi undoubtedly adds talent and goals to an already fearsome attacking force his attitude may cause further unrest to an egotistical dressing room with chairman and CEO Nasser Al-Khelaifi stating:

I do not want star behaviour anymore.

The PSG boss moved to replace sporting director Antero Henrique with the returning Leonardo over the summer and the Brazilian is expected to take a harder stance on such individual behaviour, but he may have his work cut out after throwing Icardi into the mix as well.

PSG were one of the biggest movers on the European deadline day and ended up swapping goalkeepers with Real Madrid.

Keylor Navas joined the Parisians on a four-year deal after a trophy laden spell at the Bernabeu before losing his place to Thibaut Courtois.

The Costa Rican keeper won eleven trophies whilst in Madrid including three successive Champions League titles and will cost the French side €15 million.

Navas claimed on arrival in Paris:

I will do everything I can to help PSG win new titles, bringing all my experience and professionalism, and will also try to win the hearts of the Parisian fans, famous throughout Europe for their passion.

PSG let veteran keeper Gianluigi Buffon go at the end of the last campaign and hope 32-year-old Navas can add the Champions League know how to a side desperate for European glory.

French shot-stopper Alphonse Areola moved in the opposite direction and joined the 13 time European champions on a season long-loan.

The 26-year-old Frenchman has played in La Liga before via a loan spell at Villarreal and will be hoping to remove Belgium’s number one from between the sticks.

There is no obligation to buy in Areola’s loan deal but he will be keen to make an impression on countryman Zinedine Zidane who is back at the helm in Madrid.

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Ryan Kent made a last minute £7.5 million move to Rangers from boyhood club Liverpool, becoming the Glaswegian outfits second biggest signing of all time in the process.

The deal reportedly includes £6.5 million up-front and a further £1 million in potential add-ons.

The flying winger signed a four-year contract at Ibrox after making a big impression north of the border last season.

Kent scored 6 goals and got 4 assists in 27 league appearances during 2018/19 as he went on to win the Scottish PFA young player of the year accolade.

The pace and trickery out wide unlocked the Celtic defence in more than one of the Old Firm derby’s last season and after Rangers humbling defeat to their bitter rivals at the weekend, the Gers faithful were more eager than ever to regain the talents than the Englishman possesses. Kent told Rangers TV:

I am delighted to be back here. It has been quite a long summer, a lot of things could have potentially happened but I am delighted to be here…I got a feeling of what it was like to be a Rangers player. I felt like there was unfinished business from last year and I am hoping to put that right.

The deal to bring Kent back to Rangers includes a 20% buy on clause but the club will be hoping the transfer proves value for money by helping to end Celtic’s domestic domination and cement the side back as a European mainstay.

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Arsenal midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan has joined Roma on a season-long loan.

The deal will reportedly cost the Italian outfit 3m euro’s and doesn’t include an option to buy.

The former Borussia Dortmund and Manchester United man joined Arsenal as part of the swap deal that saw Alexis Sanchez move in the opposite direction back in January 2018.

He joins the Chilean in Serie A after Sanchez joined Inter Milan earlier in the week after his disappointing spell at Old Trafford also came to a premature end.

The Armenian managed 9 goals in 56 games during his 18 months in North London and recently came on as a substitute in the derby against Tottenham.

Arsenal may have added Nicolas Pepe for £72 million in the summer and added the returning Reiss Nelson to their ranks after a successful loan spell in Germany with Hoffenheim, but the departures of Danny Welbeck, Alex Iwobi and Mkhitaryan leave them thin on the ground in the attacking areas.

The Gunners face a long season competing in the Europa League and battling for a top four place in England, they could end up regretting letting so many players go if one of their star front three pick up an injury or suspension.

Mkhitaryan is the second Premier League talent the Italian capital club has secured on loan this week with the Arsenal man joining former teammate Chris Smalling in the eternal city.

Both will be hoping to help return the prestige club back to Champions League football after missing out on qualification last year.

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One transfer that may have slipped under your radar was Javier Hernandez’s move from West Ham to Sevilla for around £8 million.

The Mexican poacher has had a mixed spell in London after his return to the Premier League, often finding himself on the Hammers bench and struggling for consistent game time.

The former Manchester United fans’ favourite has signed a three-year deal in Spain and will fill the void left by Wissam Ben-Yedder who left the five-time Spanish Cup winners to join Monaco earlier in the transfer window.

This means that West Ham have now cleared out all senior strikers who were on their books last season including Marko Arnautovic, Andy Carroll and Lucas Perez.

They seem to have been adequately replaced however, as £45 million signing Sebastian Haller from Eintracht Frankfurt has hit the ground running scoring three goals in his first three games and looks the real deal.

The £8 million acquisition of Albian Ajeti from FC Basel provides strength in depth for West Ham and allowed Hernandez to depart so late in the season.

Former Newcastle flop Luuk De Jong has started all three of Sevilla’s first three league games after reviving his career at PSV Eindhoven but his failure to find the net could leave the likeable Mexican a chance to establish himself as a first team regular.

The Author

George Cannon

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