Monday, 6 January 2020

Premier League: Where Each Team Could Strengthen In January

The transfer window has flung open its doors with teams now allowed to add fresh blood to their squads for the second half of the season. Here we assess the positions each team may look at to strengthen their team.

Arsenal: New manager Mikel Arteta has slowly made an impact collecting four points from his three Premier League games in charge. However, they are long way off the Champions League places which Arsenal need to be challenging for. Arteta will certainly look at strengthening their defence with Arsenal far too fragile defensively. A centre back will be high on the list of priorities.

Aston Villa: This is a vitally important window for Dean Smith and Aston Villa. The Midlanders are just one point clear of the bottom three and have lost their main striker Wesley to a season-ending injury. A striker will be high on their list. The club will need at least two strikers with only Jonathan Kodjia fit. A new winger and a central midfielder could also be on their list. With John McGinn out until March, Smith wants another body in the middle of the park. So, Villa will be looking to add at least three maybe four during the transfer window.  

Bournemouth: Its been a very disappointing season for the Cherries with Eddie Howe’s team stuck in the bottom three. Eight defeats in ten has increased the pressure on Howe and he could need to sign some new players to ignite their season. Bournemouth have been increasingly shaky at the back. Defenders could be high on the list as could another forward with Bournemouth severely lacking goals. But their main target will be trying to keep Nathan Ake with clubs sniffing around the Dutchman

Brighton: Its been a good campaign under Graham Potter thus far for the Seagulls. He seems happy with his squad but may want to add a couple of bodies during January. However, the future is up in the air for some of the Brighton squad. Glenn Murray, Alireza Jahanbaksh, Leon Balogun have all been linked with moves away. Potter wants to keep his squad together, but it could be a case of more out than in at the Amex Stadium.

Burnley: Sean Dyche continues to do an excellent job at Burnley. But he will want to add more quality to his squad to ensure survival in the league. Danny Drinkwater’s loan has not been extended meaning a midfielder will be high on Dyche’s agenda. Another striker and right-back could also be areas Dyche looks at in the next few weeks.

Chelsea: This window will now see how far Frank Lampard has come as Chelsea boss. This is his first window having been banned from signing players in the summer. He has openly admitted he will be looking to strengthen the Chelsea squad with a few in and a few out. Lampard is after a striker and centre back during January. There is also likely to be departures with the futures of Pedro, Olivier Giroud and Michy Batshuayi up in the air. Expect a busy window at Stamford Bridge.

Crystal Palace: Palace’s issues are the lack of options in their squad. Roy Hodgson is looking for fresh blood to continue Palace’s excellent season. Strikers will be high on his list with only Jordan Ayew delivering the goods. Conor Wickham is slowly making a comeback, but they look light in attacking areas. Hodgson may look to add defenders and a midfielder with Hodgson wanting to take Palace to the next level. Keeping Wilfried Zaha will also be a priority with interest in their prized asset. Palace is always busy so expect three or four new additions.

Everton: Carlo Ancelotti has only been at Everton for a few weeks, but he has already said he wants new players in January. Midfield is where he could target. More creativity is needed in that Everton team and certainly Ancelotti will look to address that in the next few weeks.

Leicester: The Foxes are having a tremendous season. Brendan Rodgers has admitted Leicester are always looking to strengthen. Where he might strengthen is a mystery because his Leicester side oozes quality. He may want to add another centre half to compete with Jonny Evans, Caglar Soyuncu and Wes Morgan. However, his main priority will be keeping his team together. There is interest in Soyuncu but the hawks are circling around James Maddison, Ricardo Periera and Wilfred Ndidi. Rodgers will be confident he can keep his team together.

Liverpool: How do you strengthen perfection? Well, Liverpool have added a new player in attacking player Takumi Minamino. He impressed against Liverpool in the Champions League. He will add more creativity to the Liverpool ranks. If there is one area to strengthen it would be left back with only Andy Robertson on their books.

Manchester City: City have severely lacked quality centre-halves. Aymeric Laporte’s injury-hit Pep Guardiola’s team hard. Stones and Otamendi have clearly shown they aren’t good enough. Fernandinho has filled in at the back with City in dire need of a new centre back. However, it seems unlikely in this window that City will add players with Guardiola waiting until the summer.

Manchester United: The Red Devils need midfielders. Ole Gunnar Solksjaer has severely lacked options in the centre of the park. They failed to replace Ander Herrera. Nemanja Matic is expected to leave while Paul Pogba cannot seem to get over his injuries. Solksjaer will be looking to add one if not two central midfielders in January. A new striker may also come into his thinking.

Newcastle United: Goals and creativity are seriously lacking at Newcastle. Big money signing Joelinton has scored just once for the Magpies. Miguel Almiron and Allan Saint Maximim has shown in glimpses what they can do but are far too inconsistent for Steve Bruce’s liking. A new striker will be a top priority while creative wingers and midfielders will also be on Bruce’s shopping list.

Norwich City: It’s a tough conundrum for Daniel Farke and Norwich. Farke has trusted the team that got them promoted from the Championship. They lack in several areas but don’t want to disrupt the balance of their squad. Their ambition is survival but will only add players on the right terms and prices. They have been poor defensively and lack goals when Teemu Pukki isn’t on his game. A tough window but Norwich will most likely explore loans and cheap deals across Europe if they do add to their squad.

Sheffield United: Chris Wilder has hinted several times he wants to fill key areas at Sheffield United. The Blades have already added midfielder Jack Rodwell on a free transfer. Expect the Blades to add a few more players to continue their terrific season. Centre backs and wing backs could be high on the list with the Blades short on options at the back.

Southampton: The Saints will look to add a couple of players with Southampton hovering nervously above the relegation zone. The Saints have improved in recent weeks, but Ralph Hasenhuttl wants to assure their survival. Full backs are top of his list with injuries and uncertain futures causing his concern. Another creative midfielder could also be on his wish list.

Tottenham: Jose Mourinho has not hidden his feelings regarding new signings. Spurs has promised to back him so Mourinho can add fresh blood to an underperforming Spurs team. Defenders are top of his wish list. However, the future of some of his players are causing him and Spurs fans frustration. Jan Vertonghen and Christian Eriksen are out of contract in June and neither have committed their futures to Spurs. With interest elsewhere, Spurs may cash in if a suitable offer is made.

Watford: Nigel Pearson has certainly ignited Watford’s season since arriving a few weeks ago. The Hornets are just two points off safety. Pearson will still be assessing his squad but may want to add a couple of fresh faces as they battle relegation. However, Pearson will also want to keep key players like Abdoulaye Doucoure who is attracting interest from big European clubs.

West Ham: David Moyes is back and already is looking at fresh faces to aid West Ham’s fight against relegation. A new striker to compete with Sebastian Haller could be high while improving the midfield could also be something Moyes looks at. Competition for Lukasz Fabianski is also an area which needs addressing. The Hammers are expected to add a couple of new players

Wolves: It’s a case of adding a few more bodies for Wolves. They have been lucky with injuries, but they will struggle without a few more bodies. Nuno Espirito Santo will be looking to add a few new faces in January and keep his key players. A centre back, central midfielder and a new striker could be high on his shopping list. While keeping Ruben Neves and Raul Jimenez will also be on Nuno’s list of priorities.

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