Football Transfers

2013-14 Premier League: Transfer Impact Analysis

Any club signs one of these 3 players: (1) A prospective young player – one who will be signed and loaned out or kept as an understudy (2) An in form player – one who could come, fit in the team and make an impact immediately (3) A very experienced player – one who is in his final few years of career and could add his experience and maturity to the team. In this article, we are going to mainly assess the type 2 instant impact signings of all English Premier League clubs with certain statistics.

More than 915 Million Euros have been spent on signing new players to the Premier League in 2013-14 season to make it more competitive and exciting. Each clubs’ spending on signing players along with the goals and the assists contributed by those signed players this season is represented in the below table.

Money Spent on New Signings by Premier League Clubs

Money Spent on New Signings by Premier League Clubs

POOR RETURNS:

1. Manchester United had two high budget signings. Marouane Fellaini (32.4 M Euros – 0 goals, 1 assists in League) hasn’t made his mark at all and Juan Mata (signed in winter – 44.73 M Euros – 6 goals, 4 assists) has so far made decent returns for the club. United have spent 7.08 Million Euros per goal contribution for both of these players.

2. Arsenal haven’t got good returns since Mesut Özil hasn’t really scored or assisted as much is expected of a 50 million signing. He has scored 5 goals and assisted 9 goal.

Mezut Ozil hasn't met his expectations yet

Mesut Ozil hasn’t met his expectations yet

3. Among the bottom clubs, Cardiff (7th highest in the league) burnt a lot of money with very poor returns (just 7 goals and 3 assists).

BEST RETURNS:

4. Among top 7, Everton reaped high benefits due to key signings (Romelu Lukaku and Gareth Barry) on Loan. To put it in perspective, Everton spent 0.6 M Euros less than Fellaini’s (0 goals, 1 assists) cost in signing players who scored 16 goals and made 10 assists.

5. Newcastle United has signed a very high impact player in Loïc Rémy (2.3 M Euros – 14 goals, 3 assists) and Stoke City’s key signings Peter Odemwingie, Marko Arnautovic and Oussama Assaidi made a good impact.

Newcastle United's Loïc Rémy has made a very good impact

Newcastle United’s Loïc Rémy has made a very good impact

HIGH SPENDERS:

6. Chelsea, Manchester City and Tottenham had spent more than 100 million each. These three clubs have received returns around the same range (Around 22 goals and 15 assists). This results in high cost per goal contribution.

DEFENSE ORIENTED SPENDERS:

7. Liverpool and Southampton spent money predominantly on strengthening their defense. Hence their direct goal contribution is less.

Goals contributed by the newly signed players are listed in the table below:

Percentage of goals contributed by new players

Percentage of goals contributed by new players

If the percentage of goals contributed by new signings is less, it could be because the existing teams’/youth team players’ contribution is very high or the transfers haven’t worked out as expected. It could be either be a sign of stability or a sign of transfer failure.

HIGHLY STABLE TEAMS:

8. Liverpool, Arsenal and Southampton had highly stable and capable teams which produced 98%, 92.6% and 90.7% of goals respectively of their clubs. Their new signings’ goal contribution is very minimal.

HIGHLY UNSTABLE TEAMS:

9. Crystal Palace, Hull City, Sunderland, Norwich, Swansea, WBA and Tottenham had a huge change in terms of their squads from the previous season. In these clubs, there is a minimum of 40% of goals that these new signings have brought in.

BALANCED TEAMS:

10. Everton, Newcastle United and Stoke City are the clubs with both a good impact on the goals and a relatively less change to the squad over the previous season.

BETWEEN THE STICKS:

11. Liverpool’s Simon Mignolet (10.6 Million Euros) has conceded 7 goals more than his predecessor Pepe Raina and Fulham’s Maarten Stekelenburg (5.6 Million Euros) has conceded 25 goals more than his predecessor Mark Schwarzer. Chelsea’s free transfer of Mark Schwarzer alone has been good in the Goal Keeper’s space. He is a very experienced player and filled in the space when Petr Cech was injured.

Top five cost players along with their contribution has been listed below:

Top 5 cost transfers

Top 5 cost transfers

HIGH COST PLAYERS:

12. Among the top 5 cost players, the payout for the money spent is usually very low. The money spent on each goal contributed is very high for these high cost players.

 The following table lists our pick of low cost – high impact transfers this season.

High Impact Transfers - 2013-14 Premier League season

Low Cost – High Impact Transfers – 2013-14 Premier League season

Share with us your list of high impact players.

Chelsea FC summer 2011 transfers

The first major signing of Chelsea FC this season is the manager Andre Villas Boas. He is just 33 years old and there is a lot of suspicion over whether he could win over the confidence of Chelsea FC dressing room. With the senior players like Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard who are almost around the same age, it will be a tough task for him. But given the fact that Villas Boas is very good in man management, it shouldn’t be much of a problem for him.

The real problem will come in reinventing the team’s strength. During the era of Mourinho in Chelsea, the midfield used to be very strong and solid. After the Special One left, it was never the same. (And there were no chances for any manager to do so as well) So, creating a strong midfield is an uphill task for him. Defensively, the current team is good. But it would be wise to invest for the future with both, John Terry and Alex, going into their 30s. At the same time, with three world class strikers, Anelka, Torres and Drogba, it is tough to create equal opportunities for all of them to make them happy with the club.  It would be wise to play one of them in the midfield, preferably Anelka, so that all three of them could be accommodated for many matches. 
Creating a good Plan-B is very essential. This is what Carlo Ancelotti lacked. During his entire period there were not any instances of a Plan-B being implemented. An option to switch between 4-4-2 and 4-3-3 is always available. With the availability of a good squad, implementation will not be very tough.
Thibaut Courtois The signing of the 19 year old Belgian Goal Keeper from Genk is a very wise decision as the club needs to invest a lot more money if they are to buy a goal keeper to replace Cech at a later stage. The earlier the better. He is a natural successor to Cech. He will not get enough first team appearances till Cech is in Chelsea. So, he was sent to Athletico Madrid on an year long loan. His reflex abilities and positioning are comparable to that of world class goal keepers. In the years to come, we will see him solidly commanding between the sticks at Stamford Bridge.
Oriol Romeu The signing of the 19 year old defensive midfielder, from Barcelona is a necessary signing because Chelsea needs a versatile midfielder to let the manger work on restructuring it. His performances in the Spain U-21 is has caught the eyes of everyone. Currently the link between the defenders and the attackers is not good in Chelsea. With his addition he could provide the much required link to enable the attackers invade the opponents. His allegiance to Barcelona might in future lead to a “Cesc-pursuit” like saga, but that might happen only after 5 to 7 years. It might be the least worry for the manager. 
Romelu Lukaku Signing a person who has a lot of passion towards the club is what a club really needs. That is what Chelsea has done in signing Romelu Lukaku from Anderlecht. He is known for his prolific scoring in the Belgian league. Though it is a small league, the accomplishments cannot be discounted. He is also physically strong which would help him survive in English Premier League. He has a lot to learn from the three world class strikers of Chelsea FC. He has already shown a lot of interest to learn from Drogba which is a welcome sign. He has time in his favour as he is just 18 years old.

Juan Manuel Mata A signing which was gifted by Arsenal and Spurs for the identification part. He is a product of Real Madrid’s youth academy. He can deliver one thing (i.e., creativity) which Chelsea desperately needs in the midfield. Throughout his career he has played for Spain national teams and he can help the manager in redefining the style of Chelsea’s play. The change of Chelsea’s playing style is also on the manager’s plate. If utilised properly, he could get the maximum out of him in achieving the target. Mata is of the right age (23 years) to attain a peak in his career at Chelsea. All he needs is more support from the fellow Chelsea players to make him accustom to the English culture and the physical nature of the league.
The signings of Chelsea FC all seemed quite well planned for the future. The signings are not intended just to showcase that Chelsea has money from the Russian owner’s oil fields, but for the betterment of the squad and the playing style. The support from the owner is the major force here. He needs to provide the manager with enough freedom and limited targets to build the team. Once the team along with the manager are provided the time that they require, they can challenge for the domestic and European titles in the upcoming years. And that can only let Chelsea touch the much wanted Champions League.