5 – Bayern Munich:
It has been the transitional summer Bayern have needed for a few years. Rafinha, Robben and Ribery have been released, James Rodríguez’s loan has expired and Neuer coming off an awful this, the 2019 summer window is pivotal for Niko Kovač. During 2018/19, Bayern’s defence was incredible but Neuer really struggled and their attack was disappointing. However, they have strengthened their defence with Pavard and Hernandez, added depth at centre back at full back required, but not strengthened their attack.
Their attack last season was the best, but they have lost two generational talents in Robben and Ribery without replacing them. Coman, Gnabry and unproven Alphonso Davies are their only wingers, but Müller can play out wide. This is a concern for the Bavarians especially when they have failed to sign Sané. At the time of writing, Bayern have put in a loan bid for former Dortmund star, Ivan Perišič which is no Leroy Sané but a definite start to rebuilding an attack.
4 – Newcastle:
They couldn’t convince Rafa Benítez due to them not convincing him with a vision of the club. Not that Rafa has gone, Newcastle have started spending some money. £30 million has come from the departure of Perez but with £40 million on Joelinton and around £22 million on Saint-Maximin along with just shy of £10 million of new full backs, this net spend is greater than any transfer window with Rafa in charge.
Despite Benítez being by far their best manager in a long time as he kept a Championship quality squad midtable in the Premier League, Newcastle have a point to prove. The Magpies have to prove that letting Rafa go was the right choice and this spending won’t result in a relegation. They have put the trust in Newcastle fan Steve Bruce who has got a reputation of a Championship manager. Newcastle fans aren’t happy about his appointment and Sheffield Wednesday fans feel betrayed, so Newcastle have to prove this was all worth it.
3 – Chelsea:
Chelsea are under a transfer embargo which means they can’t sign any players until the summer of 2020. This means Chelsea have to put their faith in their huge youth academy. With players like Loftus-Cheek, Tammy Abraham, Reece James and Fikayo Tomori, Chelsea should remain in the top 6. With the departure of Hazard and Torino making Ola Aina a permanent Torino player for a paltry £8.9 million, Chelsea could have been going into 2019/20 with a better squad.
Another reason Chelsea have a point to prove is their manager. After finishing third, winning the Europa League and getting to the final of the EFL Cup you would’ve thought Sarri had got more respect at Chelsea. When Juventus paid the £5 million compensation, Chelsea were happy to let Sarri leave. Club legend Frank Lampard has replaced Sarri. Lampard too has a point to prove as he only has one season as a manager under his belt.
2 – Real Madrid:
After the departure of their all-time top goal scorer in the summer of 2018 and Zidane stepping down as manager, the summer of 2018 was pivotal for Real Madrid. They didn’t bring in many player as the key signing were Thibaut Coutois and resigning Mariano. The season of 2018/19 saw Lopetegui and Solari get sacked before Zidane returned to the helm of Real Madrid. In that season, they won no silverware and finished third in the league behind their two biggest rivals. 2018/19 was a disaster for Real Madrid especially as in their previous three years they had won three Champions Leagues.
The summer of 2019 was key for Real Madrid as they had to get back to the top. The summer started with Eden Hazard’s arrival, someone Zidane had spoke highly of and at 28-years-old, this was his last chance to move. They also brought in Ferland Mendy, Éder Militão and Luka Jović but also saw Rodrygo join despite it being agreed a long time ago. They have reportedly spent the most in the summer of 2019 at just shy of £300 million. Despite the heavy spending, they are still being strongly linked with Paul Pogba and Christian Eriksen so the spending might not be over.
1 – Aston Villa:
With 12 signings and breaking their transfer record, Aston Villa definitely have a point to prove. This summer spending spree was just as they released eight first team players and Micah Richards retired, of these played in the playoff final. Together, these nine players played a total of 10,137 minutes which shows why the spending spree was necessary. Another reason was that Aston Villa loaned a lot of players in, a total of five. They have made two of these permanent in El Ghazi and the over priced Mings. Two other loanees were the ever-present Abraham and Tuanzebe who together clocked up 5846 minutes and those minutes needed replacing.
Aston Villa reportedly spent the second most amount of money, only behind Man United, but had the highest net spend. This spending was a lot of individual risks as they bought places from weaker leagues such as the Belgian top flight and only three of their newcomers have Premier League experience. These three players are Tyrone Mings, 17 appearances in three and a half years, Matt Targett, 43 appearances, and Tom Heaton, 161 appearances. It was the capture of Tom Heaton that makes people think Aston Villa will survive.