The transfer window has only been open for a little while and already the Premier League has missed out on two of Europe’s most sought-after players in the space of a couple of days.
Just a little while back, the news broke out that Edinson Cavani is all set to move to Paris Saint-Germain in a deal believed to be worth £55m, making him the second high-profile signing the Premier League has missed out on, following Thiago Alcântara’s decision to snub the Premier League, as he chose Bayern Munich over Manchester United on Sunday.
Whilst the asking price might have pushed aside Chelsea and Manchester City’s chances of signing Cavani, Thiago Alcantara’s case is probably more straightforward when you consider the fact that Pep Guardiola (his former manager) is Bayern’s manager and his brother, Pere Guardiola, is Thiago’s agent and so when Bayern came calling, Manchester United didn’t really stand much of a chance.
But they aren’t the first to decide to snub the Premier League in favour of greener pastures elsewhere. In fact, when you look at the number of players who chose to ignore the Premier League calling, you begin to wonder if there is something that the Premier League is unable to offer - especially to Europe’s top stars.
When Europe’s most coveted centre-forward, Radamel Falcao, decided to move to Monaco rather than join Chelsea or Manchester City, it raised an awful lot of eyebrows, especially in England.
These three players are but a small part of a long line of players who chose not to ply their trade in England. Neymar, Mario Götze, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, David Villa and Mario Gomez are just some of those who decided that the Premier League wasn’t worth all the hype.
Whilst there are different reasons as to why each one of them decided to come to the British Isles, the common fact is that, they all had second thoughts about coming to England, a situation which wouldn’t have happened, just a few years back, when everybody was clamouring to get into the Premier League.
But it is not all doom and gloom for the Premier League. Whilst the English clubs might not be able to splash £50m on centre forwards, like the French clubs, they can still eye a bargain - and in a summer which has seen Tottenham spend £17m on Paulinho, Man City splash out £45m on Fernandinho and Jesús Navas and Chelsea fork out around £18m on the excellent André Schürrle, the best buy of the summer is probably a tossup between Swansea City, Norwich City and Liverpool.
Swansea are one of the big spenders so far, with the £12m deal for Wilfried Bony standing out from the crowd. Similarly, Iago Aspas and Ricky van Wolfswinkel, two young forwards who arrived at Liverpool and Norwich respectively for under £10m each, have all the makings of yet another Michu.
So, while the rest of Europe have their Cavanis, their Falcaos and their Alcantaras, the Premier League have quietly gone around and picked up some future stars in the making.
And although there is still more than a month to go before the transfer window closes, rest assured: the next big signing is more likely to be a Douglas Baggio rather than a Cristiano Ronaldo.
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