With three of the top 4 having new managers and the race for the title having the potential to be extremely close, the transfer window will one of the hottest yet. Each Premier League side will be eager to improve their squad, with just 5 points separating 11th to 17th and 6 points separating 2nd to 5th last season. Below is a team of potential, or already completed, signings for next year.
Goalkeeper – Maarten Stekelenburg – Fulham have acted early to snap up the Roma stopper as a replacement for ageing Australian Mark Schwarzer. His experience and ability could prove galvanising to a lacklustre Fulham side who need some impetus over the summer; Stekelenburg is the Dutch national keeper who had a stellar World Cup 2010.
Right back – Toby Alderweireld – The Belgian full-back has been in sensational form for both club and country, helping Ajax to the Champions League in successive seasons. Liverpool and Tottenham are reportedly after his signature; at the tender age of 23, he would be a major coup for just £12m.
Centre back – Kyriakos Papadopoulos – The Greek central defender is reportedly a target of both Arsenal and Liverpool but they will have to spend big to prise him away from Schalke, with the 21 year-old having 3 years left on his contract. He is already a fixture of the Greece national team and would be a major statement of future intent for any club which signs him.
Centre back – Jores Okore – The third youngster across our back four, Aston Villa snapped up the Ivorian-born Dane from FC Nordsjaelland earlier this summer for £4m. He is a strong, pacy and aggressive centre back who was previously linked with Chelsea after impressive performances against them in the Champions League. He is sure to form a fearsome partnership with Villa club captain Ron Vlaar.
Left back – Antonio Luna – The second Aston Villa signing in the team, the 22 year-old comes from Sevilla after a series of successful loan appearances at Almeria and Mallorca. He stated that he was excited by the prospect of playing with the youthful squad at Villa.
Right midfield – Jesus Navas – Manchester City confirmed that they had purchased the services of the Spanish winger, again from Sevilla, for a fee of £15m. Despite suffering from chronic homesickness in the past, Navas is believed to have recovered from those difficulties and will form an intrinsic part of the vibrant and technically brilliant City squad.
Centre midfield – Paulinho – The 24 year-old Brazilian has been strongly linked with a move to Champions League-chasing Tottenham, with the player planning to make a decision upon the completion of the Confederations Cup. The Corinthians player is a box-to-box midfielder with immense strength and a decent finish.
Centre midfield – Thiago Alcantara – Manchester United are reported to be extremely close to signing the Spaniard, who has made 101 appearances for the Catalan giants Barcelona in all competitions, scoring 11 goals. He is still only 22 and the central midfielder will be eager to fulfil his potential if he makes the switch to Manchester, to play with fellow countryman David De Gea.
Left midfield – David Villa – The Barcelona forward has found himself playing more and more on the wings as a result of the class of Lionel Messi as a false 9, and so he finds himself at left midfield inour team. Tottenham have been linked with Villa, who has scored a tremendous 210 La Liga goals in just 396 appearances, as well as scoring crucial goals in World Cups and Champions Leagues.
Striker – Edinson Cavani – This is the potential transfer that is considered to be the trigger that might start off a spree of summer spending. Currently plying his trade at Napoli, the Uruguayan is being chased by money giants Chelsea and Manchester City, unsurprising given that he has scored 104 goals in 138 appearances for the Serie A club.
Striker – Gonzalo Higuain – The last player on the teamsheet is a phenomenal one. Still only 25, Higuain has scored 107 league goals for Madrid, third only to Ronaldo and Messi since his Madrid debut in January 2007. Arsenal are reportedly close to securing his signature; with his superb speed and great finishing, the Argentine could be the player to set the Premier League alight in 2013/2014.
It certainly looks like the Premier League will be strengthened this summer! Which player will have the largest impact on the league?