What to expect from the Premier League in the January window

Last season’s January transfer window saw Premier

What to expect from the Premier League in the January window

Last season’s January transfer window saw Premier League clubs go big, nearly doubling the biggest previous overall spend with the top flight forking out £815 million for players in the new year. It was a month of excess and big moves that rallied against what we typically know of the window. There’s not a lot of time to get deals across the line and with a greater element of risk attached to the players that do come in, clubs can often lean towards a more conservative approach. Last year proved an exception to that rule as the big six lived up to their billing with Chelsea breaking £300 million and big names like Cody Gakpo and Leandro Trossard completing big moves. Despite last season’s extraordinary window shattering all manner of records, we could see yet more history unfold this January. With so many clubs still in the title picture and the relegation battle hotting up, chances are the Premier League’s big guns will go all in to fulfill their club’s ambitions this season.

Up the top end of the table Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal will be determined to go one better than last season’s second place finish. Having narrowly lost out in heartbreaking fashion to Pep Guardiola’s City, the Gunners are looking much-improved this campaign, making great progress after some smart business in the Summer window and sitting top of the Premier League after matchday 17. If they are to consolidate that position though they will need to add to their ranks and increase the options at the Spaniard’s disposal. The priority is likely to be up front with the North London club suspected to have a number of potential stars on their shortlist. While Eddie Nketiah is enjoying a fantastic season so far, there are still some doubts that he can lead the line in Arsenal’s title charge should Gabriel Jesus’ injury woes persist. Bournemouth’s Dominic Solanke is heavily linked with a move to the Emirates having been in fine form on the south coast but the Gunners are also rumoured to be in the market for Mexican international Santiago Gimenez. The 22-year-old has been sensational for Feyenoord this term, scoring 18 goals from 16 appearances in the Eredivisie and also has the added benefit of perfectly fitting Arteta’s player profile. Arteta will also have plans to upgrade his defence with injuries continuing to plague Arsenal at the back. The 41-year-old boss was keen on Goncalo Inacio from Sporting Lisbon in the summer but a deal never manifested, perhaps it will in January.

As for the defending champions, City have been struggling as of late. Having dropped points in five of their last six Premier League matches, Guardiola’s treble winners have dropped off the pace in the title race. The absence of Kevin De Bruyne has perhaps had more of an impact than the Spaniard was expecting it to and they now find themselves in desperate need of a good run of results to get back on track and keep hopes of a fourth consecutive Premier League crown alive. Having remodeled the squad over the summer it is unlikely City will spend big in January but they may well look into adding a few midfield alternatives knowing what they now do about the extent of De Bruyne’s influence. Reports suggest that West Ham’s Lucas Paqueta is a potential target with the Brazilian in the midst of his best season to date. The 26-year-old has been the first name on the teamsheet for the Irons and has helped the East End club top their Europa League group as well as consolidate their position in eighth in the league table. Sites with free betting offers have City as the 1/8 favourites to sign Paqueta and while he is expected to move on from the London club for big money in the summer at the latest, should City deem it necessary, he could head for the exit door much sooner than that.

Spurs, Newcastle and Aston Villa will all be looking to add some much needed depth to their rosters in January as well. Spurs and Newcastle in particular given their lofty aspirations and unenviable injury lists. Ange Postecoglou’s has been vocal on his need for a centre back after the sale of Davinson Sanchez in the summer backfired and subsequent injuries to Cristian Romero and Micky Van De Ven have left him short of options. Nice defender Jean-Clair Todibo is suspected to be their priority but wrestling him away from the French outfit at such a crucial time of the season seems like it could be an uphill battle. Villa on the other hand will be hopeful of capitalizing on their unexpected strong start to the new campaign under Unai Emery. Much like Arsenal they’ll be looking to add some more striking options to alleviate the reliance on Ollie Watkins. As for the other end of the table Luton, Burnley and Sheffield United all look destined for the drop as things stand and could go big in the market in hopes of pulling off a miraculous escape. The 2023/24 Premier League campaign has proved to be one of the most unpredictable of recent years and with so much still hanging in the balance, this January transfer window promises to be a defining one for the top flight.