The COVID-19 pandemic wrecked the finances of football clubs the world over, with clubs from the Premier League being no exception.
Unsurprisingly, Premier League clubs were a bit frugal during the 2020 summer transfer window, unlike in other seasons. Nevertheless, the likes of Everton, Chelsea, Manchester City, and Leeds United spent big and snapped up quite a few big-name players to bolster their rosters.
Top five Premier League summer transfers that have not worked out so far
As is usually the case, not all new signings hit the ground running; something that is especially true in the case of the Premier League due to its overly physical and competitive nature of play compared to other top leagues in the continent.
On that note, let us have a look at five such new Premier League arrivals who have underwhelmed so far this season:
#5 Edinson Cavani (Manchester United)
Edinson Cavani was one of the big-name arrivals in the Premier League this summer, after carving out his reputation as one of the sport’s top marksmen.
However, the 33-year-old Uruguayan striker, who arrived from Paris St. Germain on a free transfer, has not got going for Manchester United. Cavani has scored just once in three Premier League appearances for the Red Devils this season.
Of course, in his defense, it can be said that the striker hadn’t played a competitive game since March, as the Ligue 1 season was suspended due to COVID-19. Cavani was not in the PSG squad when the Champions League resumed in August.
Lockdown rules in the UK and the striker’s fitness issues also meant that Cavani did not appear for Manchester United till late October, when he came on as a late substitute in the club’s goalless Premier League draw with Chelsea.
Cavani opened his Premier League account by scoring in the 3-1 win at Everton, but he has not been his usual prolific self.
It is early days for Cavani in the Premier League, and he could indeed turn out to be ‘lethal’ if he gets more top-flight action under his belt, as observed by former Manchester United striker Dimitar Berbatov:
“We already knew he had plenty of passion, otherwise he wouldn’t have such a fantastic goal-scoring record. I want the big Uruguayan to score more for United, after getting his first against Everton a couple of weeks ago, but to do that he needs to play more minutes. At 33, he’s in great shape and, with young guys around him, he could be lethal for United.”
#4 Rhian Brewster (Sheffield United)
20-year-old Rhian Brewster arrived at Sheffield United in the summer after struggling for game-time at Liverpool, where he came up through the ranks to play for the first team.
Brewster impressed in England’s victorious campaign in the Under-17 World Cup in 2017 and scored 10 goals in the Championship last season while on loan at Swansea City. But he could not break into Jurgen Klopp’s first team.
Sheffield United broke their club transfer record to land the young centre-forward, but Brewster has not managed to open his account in four Premier League games for his new club.
After a fine Premier League campaign last season, Sheffield are rock bottom in the competition this season and desperately need their young striker to fire.