Jermain Defoe, Pablo Zabaleta, Tom Cleverley; some of this summer’s early transfer activity has involved familiar names. But what about Sead Kolasinac, Pascal Gross and Nathangelo Markelo?
Here’s our go-to guide (which will be regularly updated) to those players wearing a new badge – along with a few making loan moves permanent – in the Premier League in 17-18.
Nathan Ake – Chelsea
The Cherries smashed their transfer record when acquiring the versatile Ake for a fee said to be in the region of £20million.
The Dutch international spent the first half of last season on loan on the South coast before being recalled by his parent club where he found opportunities limited. Now he returns and will undoubtedly be a major cog as Bournemouth attempt to further cement their place in the top flight.
“I had a great time last season and am really happy to be back”, said Ake. “The fans haven’t seen the best of me yet”.
Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe said: “Nathan is an outstanding young player with a fantastic attitude and a great desire to learn and develop.
“He has a very bright future ahead of him and I’m very pleased to say that future is here”.
Other Premier clubs were reportedly interested in signing the 22-year-old but Chelsea’s insistence on a buy back clause proved the deciding factor in the switch to the Vitality Stadium.
Asmir Begovic – Chelsea
A clear upgrade between the sticks for the South Coast club. Former Stoke standout Begovic deserves regular Premier football. He was always going to struggle to achieve that behind Thibaut Courtois at Chelsea and will surely relish this opportunity, and save his side some points.
Begovic has previous experience at Bournemouth having played eight games back in 2007 when on loan from Portsmouth.
The Bosnian was clearly happy to make the move, saying upon signing; “When I spoke to Eddie Howe I knew Bournemouth was the right club for me and I want to bring my experience to the club, both on and off the pitch”.
Jermain Defoe – Sunderland
A second last hurrah for Jermain? Last season was a huge renaissance for the now 34-year-old whose 15 goals for relegated Sunderland earned him a recall to the England squad.
With a relegation release clause in his contract it was always likely Defoe would stay in the Premier League, and a return to Bournemouth, where he had a successful loan spell 17 (!) years ago gives him the opportunity to prolong a successful late-career surge after it had seemed his time at the top in English football had come to and end with a move to MLS in 2014.
Commenting on the imminent move during the recent international get-together Defoe said of Bournemouth; “It’s a special place, with a top manager, and a team that’s done so well from where they’ve come from. A unique story”.
Defoe’s own story is pretty unique too, and there are few who’d bet against the diminutive striker continuing his late-career surge.
Sead Kolasinac – Schalke 04
Bosnian international defender Kolasinac became Arsene Wenger’s first capture of the summer when he was snapped up after his contract expired in the Bundesliga.
Germany-born, Kolasinac started his career at Karlsruhe before moving to Hoffenheim and Stuttgart, eventually joining Schalke in 2011.
A tall full back who is noted for his aerial ability, the 23-year-old should be more than capable of performing on the left side of a back three if required.
Having initially represented Germany at various age-group levels Kolasinac switched allegiance to the country of his parent’s birth in time to play in the 2014 World Cup Finals in Brazil where he created an unwanted record in scoring the fastest own-goal in World Cup history.
After signing a five-year deal Kolasinac said; “It feels really good and I’m pleased to be here.
“Arsenal has a huge tradition and I followed the club as a young boy, in the days of Jens Lehmann and Thierry Henry”.
Brighton & Hove Albion
Pascal Gross – Ingolstadt
Brighton boss Chris Hughton was quick off the mark in bolstering his newly-promoted club’s ranks for their return to the top flight.
First to arrive was German midfielder Gross whose signing was announced before relegated Ingolstadt’s final game of the Bundesliga season.
The 25-year-old signed a four-year contract at the Am-Ex Stadium and Hughton was pleased to have captured the midfielder.
“We are delighted that Pascal has opted to sign for us”, he said. “He will give us a different and new option going into the new season.
“He offers something different to our existing midfielders, as an attacking midfielder in a more advanced position, operating behind the forward line”.
Matthew Ryan – Valencia
The Seagulls broke their club record to acquire Australian international goalkeeper Ryan from Valencia. Ryan agreed the move, and a five-year contract, before leaving for Russia to represent his country in the Confederations Cup.
Boss Hughton said on completing the deal: “I’m delighted we’ve been able to attract Matthew to the club, and he will certainly be an excellent addition to the squad.
“For somebody of Mathew’s age , he has very good experience, having played in the top divisions in Australia, Belgium and Spain”.
With all of that experience, plus three matches for his country at the 2014 World Cup, Ryan has certainly arrived at the top. For Hughton and Brighton, he will be a major asset as they bid to establish themselves in the top flight.
Josh Kerr – Celtic
Young defender Kerr is considered one for the future and will join up with the club’s Under-23 squad after agreeing a five-year contract.
Kerr, 19, revealed that he turned down a new deal North of the border saying upon signing; “I’d been offered a new contract by Celtic, but when a Premier League club comes calling, you can’t really knock them back”.
Jordan Pickford – Sunderland
With new ownership at the helm, Everton made it clear that they are looking to break into England’s elite when splashing out £30million for Pickford who had an outstanding first full season at Sunderland.
Pickford began the season as understudy to Vito Mannone but was thrust into the hot-seat after a handful of games, performing well enough to make the final shortlist for the PFA’s Young Player of the Year award.
The price-tag makes the 23-year-old the third most expensive goalkeeper of all time but he insists that this won’t faze him. “It’s just a number isn’t it,” he said when asked about the fee. “It’s my job to be a goalkeeper and keep the ball out of the net. It’s just a number, it doesn’t affect me”.
On the prospect of working with boss Ronald Koeman Pickford added; “I’ve heard he’s a top manager and it will be good to learn under him at Everton”.
Davy Klaassen – Ajax
The Toffees next added Ajax skipper Davy Klaassen to their ranks for a fee of over £23million.
Dutch international Klaassen, who led his team to this year’s Europa League final, has signed a five-year contract with his new club.
After completing the deal the 24-year-old said; “I spoke a few weeks ago with Ronald Koeman about Everton.
“The moment that I spoke with him directly, I got a good feeling.
“We talked about the club, about the way he wants to play, and that gave me a positive feeling”.
Describing his playing style, Klaassen continued; “I’m an attacking midfield player who likes to get in the box. I also like to be aggressive on the field and press all the time.
‘I like to score and create goals and I like to win.
“I want us to get better and better as a team and we will see where we go, but I have a good feeling about it”.
Nathangelo Markelo – FC Volendam
It’s doubtful that Markelo will find his way into Ronald Koeman’s first-team squad this season. The defender has already been slated to join up with the successful Premier League 2 squad, but Koeman has no doubt used his contacts at home to snap up the promising youngster who said upon signing; “I’m looking forward to the season now. I have three years here and I hope to get plenty of playing time’.
Laurent Depoitre – FC Porto
Town started preparations for life in the top flight with the capture of Belgian striker Depoitre from Porto for a club-record fee.
Depoitre joined Porto last August from Gent in his homeland but found opportunities somewhat hard to come by in Portugal playing just 13 times and finding the net twice. He has made a solitary, goal-scoring, appearance for his national team.
He arrives in Yorkshire on a two-year-contract with a club option for an extension for a further year.
Terriers manager David Wagner – who signed a new two-year contract himself – said of his capture; “I am very happy that we have made Laurent our first signing of this summer window.
“He is a proper striker; one who has played for a very good Belgian side, featured in elite European competition and who has won domestic titles.
“He scores goals and is a real worker too, so he will fit the ‘Terriers identity’ very well”.
Aaron Mooy – Manchester City
Mooy, who spent last season on loan at the club, has now completed an £8million permanent switch from Manchester City.
The fee for the Australian international could rise to as much as £10 based on performance incentives.
Mooy played a huge role in Town’s promotion campaign last season and the 26-year-old has now signed a contract until 2020 with a club option for a further year.
Boss Wagner said of the signing; “everybody who watched our team in our promotion season knows how huge it is to have Aaron back at the club as we enter the Premier League for the first time.
“His performances for us understandably brought a lot of interest in him this summer, so it is a big statement that Aaron wants to return to us.” Added the Huddersfield boss.
Harry Maguire – Hull City
Shortly after confirming that Craig Shakespeare had agreed a three-year contract as manager, the Foxes made their first major signing of the summer, paying Hull a reported £17million for Maguire after the 24-year-old had an excellent campaign at the heart of the relegated Tigers’ defence.
The defender agreed a five-year contract with his new employers and admitted the manager convinced him that a switch to the King Power Stadium was the right one.
Maguire said; “There were a number of clubs interested but when I met the manager here, he pretty much swayed it into the direction of this club.
“He showed me the way that the club is going. It’s on the up and it looks very promising for the future, so credit the gaffer”.
Having made a solitary appearance for England Under-21’s five years ago, Maguire will be hoping that a good season at the heart of Leicester’s defence forces him into national boss Gareth Southgate’s thoughts.
Sam Hughes – Chester
Youngster Hughes arrived from Chester for an undisclosed fee and, is likely to join up with the club’s Under-23 squad initially.
The 20-year-old confessed that it was a ‘no-brainer’ to switch to the King Power once he knew of Leicester’s interest.
“They’re a Premier League club, it’s a massive club who won the title just a year ago,” he said.
“They have a history of giving lads a chance from the lower leagues and that’s a massive opportunity and was a big reason for moving there”.
Dominic Solanke – Chelsea
The Reds added to their growing group of young talent when capturing Under-20 World Cup winner Solanke.
The striker’s contract at Chelsea had expired and he agreed a switch to Anfield with the club having to pay a compensation fee likely to be in the region of £3million, although Chelsea are reportedly looking for much more.
Having shown a great deal of promise at Vitesse Arnheim last year, Solanke was effectively frozen out at Chelsea after talks over a new contract reached an impasse.
Now he will get the opportunity to be part of Jurgen Klopp’s attempt to return the Reds to the pinnacle of English and European football.
Mohamed Salah – Roma
Liverpool further increased their attacking options with the £34million capture of Egyptian international Salah from Serie A.
Salah had a taste of the Premier League back in 2014 when Chelsea signed him from FC Basel for £11million. But successive loan spells in Italy followed, first with Fiorentina then with Roma, the latter of which led to a £15million permanent switch.
Klopp, a long-term fan of the speedy wide-man said: “He has the perfect mix of experience and potential – this is a really exciting signing for us.
“I have followed him since he emerged at Basel and he has matured into a really good player.
Salah is confident his second spell in England will be more rewarding than the first, saying; “Everyone can see the coach gives everything. I hope to see that together we can give everything to win something for the club, for the supporters, and for us”.
Bernardo Silva – Monaco
City made an early big move this summer when Pep Guardiola splashed out £43 to bring Bernardo Silva to the Etihad.
The Monaco star played a major role in the French side’s hugely successful campaign last season which notably included dumping City out of the Champions League.
The 22-year-old admitted that the thought of playing under City’s Spanish coach was a major factor in the switch. Silva said: “If not the best coach in the world he [Guardiola] is one of the best.
“Of course when you have the opportunity of being trained by Guardiola, you don’t say no”.
Having started out at Benfica, Silva first made his mark on the international scene at the 2013 European U19 Championships.
With first-team opportunities limited with Benfica, he was loaned to Monaco who saw enough in his first six months to make the move permanent in January 2015.
Known as a ‘Number 10’ player. Silva should fit in well with City’s quick, slick-passing style and he will ensure that City are even tougher to defend against next term.
Ederson – Benfica
City dealt with what the manager clearly felt was an area of need when adding Brazilian goalkeeper Ederson from Benfica.
The 23-year-old became the fourth Brazilian at the club and agreed a six-year-deal, saying upon signing; “I like everything about Manchester City.
“This is a great club, the League they have here in England and they have amazing fans and they play splendid football.
“I have always had the dream to play in English football and now I’m going to make it true”.
Tixi Begiristan, City’s Director of Football, said of the new capture: “He is one of the best young goalkeepers in Europe.
“He is young, has all the qualities you could want as a top-class goalkeeper and I think he’ll fit really well into our squad”.
With Joe Hart out of favour and Willy Caballero out of contract, Ederson now becomes Claudio Bravo’s chief contender for the goalkeeper’s shirt under Guardiola.
Victor Lindelof – Benfica
With crosstown rivals City having signed a Benfica man and a former Benfica man, United also did business with the Eagles, signing Swedish international defender Victor Lindelof for a little over £30million. The 22-year-old signed a four-year contract, with an option for a fifth and there could be a further £9m payable based on performance incentives.
After putting pen-to-paper Lindelof said: “I am thrilled to be joining Manchester United.
“I have enjoyed my time at Benfica enormously and I have learned a lot there. But I’m looking forward to playing in the Premier League at Old Trafford and for Jose Mourinho”.
Mourinho commented; “Our season last year showed us that we need options and quality to add depth to the squad and Victor is the first to join us this summer”.
A commanding central defender who also has the pace to play at right back, or on the right of a back-three, Lindelof, nicknamed ‘The Iceman’ has been compared in some quarters to Real Madrid central defender Raphael Varane. United fans will be delighted if he can come close to emulating the Frenchman’s achievements.
Christian Atsu – Chelsea
United exercised their option to buy Ghanaian international Atsu from Chelsea after the attacker played a major role in helping the Geordies back into the top flight.
Atsu made 32 Championship appearances for Newcastle last term, bagging five goals and has now signed a four-year contract after United paid a reported £6.2million.
After clinching the signing Rafa Benitez said; “We are happy to sign a good player. He’s shown us that he’s a good professional and someone who is very keen to learn and improve.
“Christian has been a key part of our promotion campaign and he wants to help us to build something for the future”.
Atsu spent four years as a Chelsea player but never actually appeared in a game for the Londoners, instead spending time on loan at Malaga, Bournemouth, Vitesse Arnheim and, finally Newcastle.
Darren Fletcher – West Bromwich Albion
City added a veteran presence to their midfield after signing Fletcher whose contract with West Bromwich Albion had expired.
The 33-year-old had a fine season at The Hawthorns last term, appearing in every match for The Baggies to put his previous illness woes behind him.
Scotland international Fletcher put pen-to-paper on a two-year contract with City and said; “I am delighted to be here.
“This is a fantastic club with a top manager and a great group of players and I am really looking forward to this opportunity.
I loved every moment of my time at West Bromwich Albion and I loved every moment of my time with Manchester United [where he spent almost 20 years], but this is a new challenge for me now, and I like to think I respond well to new challenges”.
Tom Cleverley – Everton
The club exercised their option to make the transfer of Cleverley permanent and the midfield man has now inked a five-year deal.The 27-year-old enjoyed an excellent second loan spell at Vicarage Road last term and is happy to have his long-term future sorted out.
“I’m delighted”, said Cleverley after the deal was announced. “I think I made it clear I had feelings for the club when I came down here on loan and it was always the view to sign a permanent deal so I’m over the moon.
“I felt part of the club from day one of the loan but now I really feel this is home and hopefully it is for a very long time.”
13-times capped Cleverley has not been in the England set-up since 2013 but will be hopeful that regular playing time at his new full-time club will propel him back into Gareth Southgate’s thoughts in the build-up to next year’s World Cup.
Will Hughes – Derby County
The Hornets completed the signing of England Under-21 international Hughes for an initial £4.5million, although that figure could rise to £7million dependent on performance and appearance bonuses.
Hughes signed a five-year contract and became the first new arrival at the club following the appointment of Marco Silva.
The 22-year-old had his promising career interrupted by a cruciate injury in 2015 but is now firmly back on track and was one of the standout players in the Championship last term.
Hughes turned in a series of impressive displays for England in the European Under-21 Championships this summer and will surely be relishing the chance to test himself against the best in England in the upcoming campaign.
West Ham United
Pablo Zabaleta – Manchester City
The Hammers added title-winning experience to their defence when completing the signing of free agent Zabaleta on a two-year contract.
The 58-times capped Argentine spent nine years at the Etihad after joining from Espanyol and made over 300 appearances, winning two Premier League titles. He now moves to London as Hammers boss Slaven Bilic looks to strengthen his squad after a tough 2016-17 campaign.
The right-back admitted after signing; “Sometimes a new challenge is all you need as a person and as a player.
“I thought my time at City was done. It’s been a fantastic nine years, absolutely brilliant.
Staying in England, he confessed, was a major factor. “I wanted to keep playing in the Premier League”, added the 32-year-old. “For me, after being in this country for so long, this is a new challenge and I’m ready for it and looking forward to it”.