The *English* summer transfer window is closed. The Premier League is back. Silly season is over. The real season has begun. But with it, comes the actualisation of this silly season. The posturing, the prognosticating, the five minute highlight reel watching is over.
We have actual footage of these actual signings to pour over now, well at least in most cases. And, yeah, not all of it is flattering. So, two games in, here are nine Premier League signings who are definitely, 100%, without question or hesitation going to flop this season.
West Ham's list of strikers in the Gold-Sullivan era is, well, insipid. It's so uninspiring it's almost... inspired? In any case, £45m man Sebastien Haller was supposed to change all that. The former Eintracht Frankfurt target man was the striker to revert this curse.
Two games in, the club are winless, Haller goalless and the Frenchman is suffering from a swollen knee. I hate to burst your bubble lads, but...
Sure, the £27m(?) defender has immediately returned to St Etienne on loan, but he will join Arsenal at some point and, I'm telling you, the club will regret it.
Gabriel 2.0, mark my words.
Firstly, there's the less pressing problem around Arnaut Danjuma's name. Is it Arnaut Danjuma, as both the club and widespread media have gone for, or is it Arnaut Groeneveld, which is what Wikipedia have gone for? It's both confusing and troubling.
Secondly, though, there's the issue of his fitness (footness?), with the Dutchman having already aggravated a foot injury that kept him out for four months last season. Needless to say, he is yet to play for the Cherries.
Sheffield United bought Lys Mousset for a club-record £10m in July, and then 10 days later they smashed that record with the £20m purchase of fellow frontman Oli McBurnie. Hardly a confidence booster, is it?
Oh and, err, Mousset is still not yet fit, apparently, and has thus been left out of the first two matchday squads. For the record, McBurnie is yet to nab a starting berth as well. Hmmmm.
Adam Webster cost £25m. Who is Adam Webster?
Adam Harry Webster is an English professional footballer who plays for Brighton & Hove Albion. He is a centre back.
Adam Webster is yet to start for Brighton. In his way stand a newly captained Lewis Dunk and Shane Duffy, perhaps the greatest centre back pairing outside the top si-, hell, top four. Why did Brighton buy Adam Webster? Who is Adam Webster?
Both these statements about Mateo Kovacic are unequivocally true:
1) Kovacic was an integral signing for Chelsea, with midfield re-enforcements paramount in an off-season where no others could be brought in.
2) Kovacic was a horrendous signing for Chelsea, and yet another example of the short-termism that has plagued the club for the last decade. He will not be a Chelsea player in year's time. He won't deserve to be.
Why did Crystal Palace sign Jordan Ayew?
After a £30m summer move from Newcastle, Ayoze Perez has registered just one shot on target this season in Leicester blue/pink.
I know this because I have watched the Spaniard in his debut outings for the Foxes, and also because I clicked on the top article that comes up when you Google him, which is entitled: 'Does £30m Man Ayoze Perez Fit Brendan Rodgers’ System At Leicester?'
It's going well, then.
Let's be real. You could say the same for much of Newcastle's business over the summer, but Joelinton looks the most egregious right now. That's unquestionable, on account of the £40m price tag. And, again, the top stories that come around him illustrate this point perfectly, with the phrase 'concerned staff' coming up more than once.
I'm not a first impressions expert, but that strikes me as a bad one, probably. I don't think 'concern' is the emotion I'd like to provoke in people upon meeting them.