The 12 Most Intriguing Premier League Summer Signings So Far


One thing that is unusual this year compared to previous transfer windows is that many teams have done their business early. Traditionally, most teams will have a few transfers trickle through here and there, but the majority of the business is done with a last minute scramble on transfer deadline day.

Because of this, I have compiled a list of 12 deals that have got my attention, followed by a brief personal opinion as to why each deal could light up the Premier League for this upcoming season.

I’ve avoided the obvious picks such as Erling Haaland, Djed Spence, Christian Eriksen and Raheem Sterling, as I want to focus on most players that may or may not have flown under the radar. So without further ado:

Oleksandr Zinchenko – Arsenal: £30m*

The versatile Ukrainian more than held his own in a Manchester City team boasting several world class players in every position, whether he was deployed as a left back or out on the wing.

Because of this I assumed he was going to be a City player for his entire career, but some shrewd business by Arsenal means they now have a top player who is hungry to succeed.

Sven Botman at Lille
Sven Botman

Sven Botman – Newcastle: £31m

Botman has been on my radar ever since he was a mainstay in the Lille defence that only conceded 23 goals on the way to winning Ligue 1 in 2020-21.

It was rumoured that he would go to a host of clubs, with Manchester United being the most likely destination, but he stayed put in France for another season.

Newcastle are looking to build an empire, and to start with the foundations of Botman in defence is an excellent bit of business. He is a great defender, but more importantly he has a winner’s mindset, which is what Newcastle need.

Kalidou Koulibaly – Chelsea: £33m

Koulibaly is a name that has made headlines in the transfer window every season, but he always stayed loyal to Napoli, the team that made him a star.

Now aged 31, it was thought he would retire at the Italian club, but a surprise move to Chelsea could bolster their defence and give them the push they need for next season’s title. Equally, us British fans that do not follow Serie A can finally see what all the fuss is about.

Jesse Lingard – Nottingham Forest: Free transfer

Everyone was wondering where Jesse was going to go following his release. He has a fire within him to prove how good he is, as he showed when on loan at West Ham United.

Aged 29, he is entering the prime of his career, and Forest will hope to reap the benefits of that now they are finally back in the Premier League.

Gabriel Jesus – Arsenal: £45m

What a coup this could turn out to be! The fact that Man City were willing to let him go was baffling to me. But City’s loss is Arsenal’s gain; and Jesus will give the Gunners some much needed firepower to compliment their strength in depth on the wings.

Gavin Bazunu – Southampton: £12m

It was always going to be hard for a youth goalkeeper to break into the Manchester City team when Ederson is their first choice keeper; even if you have ten international caps at the age of 20…

Hopefully for the Republic of Ireland international, Bazunu will get some games at Southampton and start thriving. It is great for him to be in the top division as that will keep him sharp, and him challenging Alex McCarthy for the number one jersey is only going to be a good thing for the Saints.

Darwin Nunez
Darwin Nunez

Darwin Núñez – Liverpool: £75m

This was originally going to be in the obvious picks list; but after certain events had transpired, there was no way I could ignore the Uruguayan player.

Having joined from Benfica, he was already somehow considered a flop because he missed an easy chance in a friendly. This was quickly turned on its head again when he scored four goals in another friendly away at Leipzig.

Can he fill the boots of Sadio Mane? He does have big boots to fill… However there is no denying Núñez has a massive buzz around him before he has even played a Premier League match.

Kalvin Phillips – Manchester City: £42m

Many thought that Phillips would stay at his hometown club for his whole career, so it was a shock to me to hear that he had joined the league champions.

There is no denying he will be an excellent acquisition, and he has shown time and time again that he belongs at the highest level thanks to Gareth Southgate giving him a chance in the England setup.

James Tarkowski – Everton: Free transfer

I’ve been a fan of Tarkowski for a while now. The twice-capped England international was always solid at Burnley, and would do a great job at most Premier League teams, even if he was just a squad player.

Everton need stability after nearly getting relegated. That was a real warning sign and Lampard has done a good job strengthening his defence. Everton fans will now hope he builds on that so the Toffees can climb up the league table again this season.

Brenden Aaronson – Leeds United: £24.7m

Pulisic, Reyna, Dempsey, McBride… These are just a few examples to suggest that American midfielders can hit the ground running in the Premier League.

Any Red Ball Salzburg player deserves respect, and now Aaronson has moved to Yorkshire, he will be eager to show the world why there has been such a fuss about him over the last couple of years.

Dean Henderson at Europa League Final 2021
Dean Henderson

Dean Henderson – Nottingham Forest: Season long loan

It seems Manchester United are never going to pull the trigger on this guy. After his two-year stint at Sheffield United, many thought that he was a natural successor to David De Gea, but this turned out to not be the case.

Now he will be given a run in the first team, he has many options available to him. If he settles quickly, he may want to turn the loan into a permanent transfer.

If that does happen, then the 25 year old can look at restarting his career, and mount a serious challenge for the England team again. He definitely has the ability…

Sonny Perkins – Leeds United: Compensation not agreed yet

Another Leeds United signing, but this one drew a lot less attention than Aaronson did.

The England under-18 international was just about to break into the West Ham team. That’s right; the team that deservedly qualified for Europe last season. Then out of nowhere he signed for Leeds United instead.

Only he will know why this is. Will he get a run in the first team? Only time will tell. But West Ham clearly rated him highly so I’m interested to see how his season pans out.

* All transfer fees are reported sums.