Players Premier League clubs should sign for 2024-25 season

Kylian Mbappé, who this week was named as the top striker in the world in ESPN FC’s 100 best players, will not be moving to the Premier League, as Real Madrid have officially signed him. But the clubs in England will be busy doing business during this summer’s transfer window, which opens for the Premier League on June 14 and the rest of Europe on July 1, hoping to improve their squads while staying within financial regulations.

So, in the spirit of some fantasy football, here is a guide to the one player each Premier League club should sign this summer.

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Newcastle striker Alexander Isak might be the missing piece of the puzzle as the Gunners look to usurp Manchester City and clinch that elusive first league title since 2003-04. The Swede’s grace, clinical finishing and clever movement got him 21 league goals last season, and similar returns in north London could be enough to knock Pep Guardiola’s team off their perch.

With Villa playing in the Champions League next season, they should think big. Napoli‘s impressive winger Khvicha Kvaratskhelia is available and would give them a new dimension.

Whoever takes over from outgoing manager Roberto De Zerbi needs to end his experiment of rotating the goalkeepers. Why not make Arsenal’s unsettled man between the sticks, Aaron Ramsdale, their undisputed No. 1? It is clear he will see very little action at Arsenal now that David Raya has established himself as the clear starter.

Their style of play is easy on the eye, but Bournemouth concede too many goals. The fix, then, is signing an uncompromising defender such as Brentford’s Ethan Pinnock, who rarely has an off day.

The bad news? Brentford seem certain to lose their talisman Ivan Toney during the summer window. The good news, or at least the silver lining? It will give the Bees a war chest to rebuild. They should consider signing LaLiga‘s 24-goal top scorer, Artem Dovbyk of Girona.

Any transfer fee would be high, but it’d be worth it.

Who knows what might happen next at the soap opera that is Stamford Bridge? There may have to be high-profile departures (like Conor Gallagher?) to meet financial targets, but Ivan Toney seems a sensible signing to boost their attacking power. It is only a matter of time before he rediscovers his scoring touch.

Manager Oliver Glasner has an exciting team when everyone is fit. His problem is that the excellent Eberechi Eze and Michael Olise struggle to stay off the physio’s table, so Glasner needs cover. Arsenal’s out-of-favor Emile Smith Rowe would fit the bill.

Finances are a touchy subject at Goodison Park after the club was hit with two separate points deductions by the Premier League for breaching financial regulations. But they’ll need to splash some cash to solve their main problem — a lack of goals. Blackburn RoversSammie Szmodics, who scored 27 goals on a struggling team in the Championship during the 2023-24 campaign, could be the right player at the right price.

Willian has been a fabulous signing, but he’s in the veteran stage of his career. To fill his boots, Fulham should consider a cheeky bid for Callum Hudson-Odoi. He has stepped up a level at Nottingham Forest, becoming a consistent threat in attack and delivering goals.

Every promoted club needs an upgrade or two, and one idea here is Ross Barkley, who rediscovered his best form despite Luton Town‘s relegation. Barkley wants to stay in the top flight, and Ipswich would do well to oblige him.

Barcelona‘s finances are in such poor shape that the Catalan giants have to offload players. The Foxes could take advantage of this opportunity by bidding for Raphinha or Ferran Torres, both of whom have Premier League experience.

New manager Arne Slot will know all about West Ham’s superb Mohammed Kudus. He was in the Ajax team facing Slot’s Feyenoord in the Netherlands.

Kudus is a menace and strikes me as a Liverpool-type player.

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Who could improve City, fresh off a fourth Premier League title in a row? Pedro Neto. Yes, he is injury-prone, but when fit he can be an express train out on the right flank for Wolves. If he joined City, Neto would combine with Jérémy Doku on the left flank to make City even better. A scary thought.

This season, the Red Devils looked too vulnerable at the back. Notwithstanding their terrific — and let’s face it, surprise — FA Cup win over City, they still need to bolster their defence. The answer might be Barca’s Ronald Araújo. He and centre-back Lisandro Martínez would give United a steadier look.

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If Isak leaves the club this summer, Bournemouth’s Dominic Solanke could be the way to go. He is coming off his best-ever season with 19 league goals and he’s been coached to be less a team player and more selfish in attack, all the better to break down defenses.

There are few problems (if any) with their attacking options, but defensively they remain vulnerable. How much they have to spend might be an issue — you figure they’ll be on a fairly tight budget — so Peterborough‘s classy young central defender Ronnie Edwards is a suggested option. He has many admirers.

With all three promoted clubs relegated at the end of last season, the Saints must strengthen to give themselves a chance of survival in the Premier League. One way to do that would be signing all-around midfielder Nicolas Seiwald of RB Leipzig, who could also star in this summer’s Euros for Austria.

Spurs are looking to expand their attacking options. Might this be the right time to convince Marcus Rashford to leave Manchester United after a troubled season at Old Trafford? A change of scene could revitalize his career and help Tottenham stay top-four contenders.

With Lucas Paquetá‘s future in doubt after he was charged with betting rule breaches, the Hammers need a new playmaker. Forest’s Morgan Gibbs-White would not come cheap, but would be ideal to pick the locks at the No. 10 position.

When everyone is fit, they have a decent team. But manager Gary O’Neil will want a top-half finish next season. To get there, they could sign striker Elijah Adebayo. He bagged 10 goals despite Luton’s relegation and a lengthy injury absence, and he would give Wolves more aerial threat and physical presence up front.