London– The Premier League has lost Luis Suarez following his move from Liverpool to Barcelona, but there will be plenty of new faces on show when the 2014-15 season begins.
Here, AFP Sports lists the 10 most significant transfers to have taken place over the course of the close season (transfer fees approximate and as reported by British media):
- Atletico Madrid (ESP) to Chelsea; £32 million ($53.9 million, 40.4 million euros)
Bruising Brazil-born striker Costa, 25, joined Chelsea after firing Atletico Madrid to the La Liga title last season with 27
goals. Had a chastening experience at the World Cup with adopted country Spain, but Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho hopes he will be the final piece in his title jigsaw.
- Porto (POR) to Manchester City; £32 million
Despite a spending cap imposed on them by UEFA for contravening Financial Fair Play regulations, Manchester City found the funds to bring France centre-back Mangala to the Etihad Stadium. The 23-year-old spent three years at Porto, winning two league titles, and has played three times for France.
- Barcelona (ESP) to Arsenal; £30 million
Twelve months after smashing their transfer record to sign Mesut Ozil, Arsenal flexed their financial muscles again with a big-money move for Chile's star forward Sanchez, who can play wide or as a central striker. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said that Sanchez would “add power, creativity and much quality to our squad”.
- Barcelona (ESP) to Chelsea; £30 million
After a mixed three years with Barcelona, 27-year-old former Arsenal captain Fabregas returns to the Premier League with Chelsea. The goal-scoring midfielder will come up against his old employers for the first time on October 5, when Arsenal visit Stamford Bridge.
- Athletic Bilbao (ESP) to Manchester United; £29 million
Following an aborted transfer in the summer of 2013, Basque midfield organiser Herrera became the first new recruit of the post-David Moyes era at Old Trafford. Has impressed in pre-season with his slick distribution.
- Chelsea to Everton; £28 million
Amid renewed competition for places at Chelsea, 21-year-old Belgium striker Lukaku elected to join Everton on a permanent basis, having scored 16 goals while on loan at Goodison Park last season. Everton broke their club record to sign him, but manager Roberto Martinez said he was “worth every penny”.
- Southampton to Manchester United; £27 million
After a fine 2013-14 campaign, which saw him named in the Professional Footballers' Association Team of the Year and supplant Ashley Cole in the England squad, 19-year-old left-back Shaw joined United in a move that made him the fourth-most expensive defender in history.
- Southampton to Liverpool; £25 million
Another Southampton player who sought pastures new after breaking into the England squad, attacking midfielder Lallana left St Mary's after eight years of service. The versatile, two-footed 26-year-old can play in any position in support of the striker.
- Benfica (POR) to Liverpool; £20 million
A 20-year-old Serbia international, winger Markovic is one of the attacking players who Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers hopes will soften the blow of Suarez's departure. Scored seven goals in 49 appearances in 2013-14 as Benfica won the domestic treble and reached the Europa League final.
- New York City FC (USA) to Manchester City; loan
After 13 years at Chelsea, 36-year-old England midfielder Lampard left for new Major League Soccer outfit New York City FC, only to be immediately loaned to their sister club Manchester City. He will come up against his former Chelsea team-mates for the first time on September 21. – Sapa-AFP