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Pick of the bunch: the best deals in the Premier League so far

Sunday 25th June 2017
This summer transfer window promised to be an intriguing one and it has not disappointed thus far. Liverpool, Manchester United and Manchester City have all recruited reinforcements in their bid for a Premier League title assault next season, with some more savvy signings catching the eye the further one goes down the league table.

Here are the best signings so far.

Bernardo Silva

Pep Guardiola wasted no time, signing the former AS Monaco midfielder on 26th May. Guardiola has been clear in his message: City needs to add more quality to their side if he is to be given the tools necessary in completing the vision set out by the City hierarchy. Champions League competitivity and domestic success must be married to each other and not divorced.

The arrival of Silva is a statement of such intent. Silva's eight goals and nine assists aided Monaco's unlikely Ligue 1 triumph and the 22-year-old's flair and creativity shone during Monaco's clash with City in the Champions League. Silva should, for a player of his quality, be more proficient, but under the tutelage of Guardiola such potency should come with time.

Darren Fletcher

Fletcher made the move from West Brom to Stoke City on the first day of June for a free. It is not a deal that would have got many Stoke fans overwhelmingly excited, but it is one that they will come to appreciate. Fletcher was a fantastic servant at the Baggies and was a crucial element of Tony Pulis' stoic side; further to this, he enjoyed a successful spell at United, where many Reds understood the value he brought to Sir Alex Ferguson's team.
Fletcher will provide the stability that has been missing in the Stoke midfield. Composed and experienced, the Scotsman will balance out Mark Hughes' side; also boasting an enviable engine, Fletcher should become Stoke's heartbeat.

Sead Kolasinac

Kolasinac's inevitable departure from Schalke was well documented and consequently, there was a string of Europe's top clubs looking for his signature. That he decided to join Arsenal represents a coup for the Arsene Wenger and is a deviation from the norm i.e. being trumped by teams with superior finances and stature.

Indeed, this was, and will prove to be, a very important signing for the Gunners. Wenger's defence was depleted as it entered the final stages of the season with injuries mounting up. Truthfully, also, it was a defence that had been permeable all season and needed improvement. Kolasinac, Arsenal fans will be praying, will bring with him that defensive resolve that the Gunners desperately need; his performances in the Bundesliga certainly suggest he will provide the strength and discipline so coveted.

Victor Lindelof

Lindelof came close to joining the Red Devils in January, but for unintelligible reasons, the move fell through - oh how Jose Mourinho would've lamented this with his defence, like Arsenal's, also threadbare. Chris Smalling and Phil Jones are not defenders capable of sustaining a firm and reliable defensive line; however, Eric Bailly has shown he can. He formed an impressive partnership with Marcos Rojo, only for such a pairing to be split upon a cruciate ligament injury to the Argentinian.

Lindelof, like Bailly, is calm in possession and is among the new breed of centre-backs who is adept at bringing the ball out from the back and initiating attacking movement. Complemented with this is a no-nonsense resoluteness which will fit in nicely with the nature of the Premier League. It seems as though United have landed an already very competent centre-back that still has a lot of potential. Lindelof's addition is a shrewd signing that should - Mourinho will be hoping anyway - form a sturdy foundation with Bailly at the back.

Harry Maguire

Leicester City signed Maguire for £17 million from Hull City - a considerable amount of money when one considers Maguire has only really tested the Premier League water. Thrown in at the deep end in a relegation battle, though, Maguire showed his value and was one of the stand-out performers under Marco Silva. 
If Maguire replicates the form he showed at Hull, there is no doubting he will improve the quality of the Foxes' back-line; improve and Maguire could be in line for an international senior call-up, though that is probably a few years away.



Mohamed Salah

Finally, a statement of intent from Liverpool. Salah moves to Anfield in a deal that will reach up to £36.9 million, three years after choosing Chelsea over Liverpool. Yet instead of landing a player with potential three seasons ago, Klopp's team have signed a player with proven quality. Salah is not a mesmerising dribbler, but an incisive winger. At Roma, he constantly broke opposition lines by locating space and using his pace to breach a defence - the end of such a run being a pin-point cross or goal.
Salah will inject more pace, more directness and more potency to Liverpool's multi-faceted attack. Salah is a smart signing from Jurgen Klopp and has all the traits to succeed during the second time of asking in the Premier League.

Honourable mentions

Everton's transfer business has also been admirable: the signing of protegee Jordan Pickford and Ajax's Davy Klassen demonstrate a willingness to rub shoulders with the Premier League big boys. Yet, Pickford at £30 million is a risky deal - he has not shown enough promise to warrant such a staggering transfer fee and such money might yet come back to hurt the Toffees.
Michael Jones

Football & political writer with a predictable love of everything retro. English Literature undergraduate at the University of Exeter, looking to pursue a career in sports journalism. For a collection of my work, visit. http://mikejonesmedia.wordpress.com

Follow me on twitter: @jonesmichael_97

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