What every Prem club needs in the January transfer window: Goalscorers in high demand and short supply… | OneFootball

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·29 November 2023

What every Prem club needs in the January transfer window: Goalscorers in high demand and short supply…

Article image:What every Prem club needs in the January transfer window: Goalscorers in high demand and short supply…

Eddie Howe, Jurgen Klopp, Erik ten Hag and Mikel Arteta are all turning their focus to January.

Centre-forwards look likely to be most in-demand in January, with Man Utd, Chelsea and Newcastle all in need. Here’s what every Premier League club needs most in the next transfer window…

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Arsenal – central midfielder You could make a strong argument for Arsenal’s priority being a centre-forward, but on a limited budget with few top-class options available mid-season, Mikel Arteta may decide to make do until the summer. Arsenal look similarly light in central midfield, especially with Thomas Partey unable to stay fit. If they can push the Ghanaian towards Juventus, some help for Declan Rice and Jorginho would be a timely boost ahead of a possible title push.

Article image:What every Prem club needs in the January transfer window: Goalscorers in high demand and short supply…

Aston Villa – defensive midfield Not only has Unai Emery got his side battling with the big boys in the top four, the Villa boss has assembled a squad that looks robust enough to cope with the demands of a European push and whatever ambitions the manager has domestically. Whether they have real quality in depth, especially behind Ollie Watkins, is less clear. Emery could be most vulnerable in defensive midfield if injury befell Boubacar Kamara given how Leander Dendoncker has struggled.

Bournemouth – left-sided defender January could hinge on what Bournemouth decide to do about Lloyd Kelly. The former Cherries skipper is out of contract at the end of the season and should they decide to cash in while they still can, with Spurs and Liverpool linked, they would be left very light at left-back and at the heart of Andoni Iraola’s defence.

Brentford – attacker The Bees may also have to react in January, with the vultures circling around Ivan Toney. Thomas Frank has muddled through this far without his leading marksman while Toney has been suspended, but if Arsenal, Chelsea or the like were to make them an offer they can’t refuse, then they ought to reinvest some of their windfall on a replacement. Regardless, another versatile forward capable of playing off the flank would be a welcome boost, especially given Frank’s injury woes this season, which have also left him short at left-back.

Brighton – left-back Brighton wouldn’t be in bad shape if their players weren’t dropping like flies. And the one area they could have been exposed – left-back – has been highlighted by Pervis Estupinan’s injury. There were others who could do a job as cover, but many of them are struggling for fitness too. So Roberto De Zerbi could really use some specialist cover in the new year. No doubt they have already found it, in the Peruvian second division, and we’re certain whoever it is will be worth £100m in two years.

Burnley – left-back Likewise, the Clarets are shortest on the left of their defence. Vincent Kompany was desperate to land Ian Maatsen from Chelsea in the summer but last season’s loanee wasn’t so keen on a return. He has grander plans now, which may involve Manchester City, and Kompany needs to look elsewhere for competition and cover for Charlie Taylor.

Chelsea – centre-forward Easiest of the lot…sign a sodding striker. A billion quid down and still Mauricio Pochettino is lacking a top-class goalscorer.

Crystal Palace – defensive midfielder Cheick Doucoure’s Achilles injury should focus Palace’s attention on the centre of the midfield ahead of the January window. Doucoure was their Player of the Year in his first season and Roy Hodgson has no cover of anything like the same quality.

Everton – central midfielder Sean Dyche has a well-functioning midfield – but only when everyone is fit and available. Amadou Onana’s absence was badly felt at the weekend and Idrissa Geuye, 33, will be missing for AFCON. Further depth is needed especially in the absence of those 10 points.

Fulham – centre-forward Fulham may need to react to Joao Palhinha’s possible departure – they may have that covered already if there is any truth in the rumours around Andre. But Marco Silva certainly needs reinforcements in attack. Through the middle, Carlos Vinicius and Raul Jimenez have a single Premier League goal each, with neither making a case to be the regular starter.

Liverpool – defensive midfielder Jurgen Klopp made good progress on his midfield rebuild but the job is not yet complete. Alexis Mac Allister has played deeper than he might have expected and the Argentinian has done a decent job. But a specialist defensive midfielder would be a huge boost ahead of the second half of the season.

Luton – centre-back Rob Edwards hasn’t much wriggle room with his 25-man squad full and a couple of Hatters expected back from injury. The Luton boss has perhaps been fortunate that his centre-back pool hasn’t been stretched, and it would be wise to add in that area while he can.

Manchester City – left-back What do you get the coach that has it all? City are strong across all departments and they could free Kalvin Phillips without any urgency to replace the England international, even if Pep Guardiola might be tempted by another midfielder. Pep looks lightest at left-back but he isn’t concerned with playing an actual left-back, even if he has been linked with a couple with the long term in mind.

Manchester United – centre-forward Anthony Martial did what he does, scoring a goal on Sunday to make everyone ponder whether he could yet be of good use to United. But we’ve been here too many times before. Rasmus Hojlund and Erik ten Hag need United to sign a centre-forward, even if it’s another loan.

Newcastle – striker When Sandro Tonali’s suspension became a prospect, the assumption was that Newcastle would look for a replacement in January. And they still might. Kalvin Phillips is an opportunity almost too convenient to pass up, but Eddie Howe has options in midfield. More so than he does up top, where Alexander Isak and Callum Wilson seem to have taken turns on the sidelines. If Newcastle’s European campaign extends into the new year, another specialist striker would ease worries of Howe being left short in attack.

Nottingham Forest – striker Steve Cooper doesn’t need much in terms of numbers, but Taiwo Awoniyi’s absence is a major blow. Chris Wood and Divock Origi (he signed for Forest in the summer, remember?) have a month to prove they can fill the forward’s void but Cooper would be wise to make contingency plans for January.

Sheffield United – centre-back The Blades are down to the bare bones at the back following long-term injuries to John Egan and Chris Basham. They started the season on the short side and that weakness has been woefully exposed. The overseas loan market seems Paul Heckingbottom’s best hope for January reinforcements.

Article image:What every Prem club needs in the January transfer window: Goalscorers in high demand and short supply…

Tottenham – centre-back January cannot come soon enough for Ange Postecoglou, who opted not to use the only centre-back still available to him in the defeat to Villa. Postecoglou, as we all know, has his way of playing and the Spurs boss needs a defender comfortable in such a style and system, initially to fill in for Micky van de Ven and then to compete with the Netherlands international and Cristian Romero.

West Ham – striker January could be tricky for the Hammers, with little money to play with, players needing to be shipped out and perhaps four players heading to AFCON. Amid all that, David Moyes could really use a centre-forward since those currently available have combined for two Premier League goals, with 33-year-old Michail Antonio doing all the heavy lifting. If Moyes can cobble together £19million, Serhou Guirassy’s buy-out clause could be activated.

Wolves – striker Wolves are in a similar position to the Hammers, though Hwang Hee-chan is doing his best to carry the goalscoring burden. Gary O’Neil, though, is likely to have to look at loanees while the club walks an FFP tightrope.

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