please note this list features only permanent deals only, no loans. And only features players signed this season (2016/17) not before. I will also be following it up with the rest of the teams in future parts.
Best: Rob Holding.
It’s been hard to really call any of Arsenal’s signings a success this season. All of them have been OK, but not great. But probably the best of the bunch has been young CB Rob Holding. He wasn’t involved much until the switch to a back 3 late in the season, but since then he has looked an extremely accomplished ball playing CB from those wide CB positions.
Worst: Takuma Asano.
Likewise, It’s been hard to call any of Arsenal’s signings flops either. Xhaka has been largely good, but prone to moments of madness, Perez has spent most of the season injured – and when not he’s either been benched or played out of position (though still performed very well) and Mustafi to put it likely has had a season of 2 halves – his form collapsing post-January. So that leaves Takuma Asano – who signed but was promptly denied a work permit and sent on loan to the German second division. Which isn’t really the level Arsenal should be targeting.
Best: Lewis Cook.
Lewis Cook only made 9 appearances in all competitions this season. So why is he on this list? Because frankly Bournemouth’s transfer business has been nothing short of atrocious. Ake was a good signing and Wilshere was OK – but both came on loan so are ineligible. Congrats Lewis – You were these least incompetent.
Worst: Lys Mousset.
Wow was this hard. Jordan Ibe played more than 1,000 league minutes and ended with 0 goals or assists. Brad Smith was largely missing from matches and when on the pitch was possibly more so. But I’ve gone for Lys Mousset for being the most outright detrimental to Bournemouth’s hopes this season. His own goal cost Bournemouth a win vs Stoke and that was the only time he hit the back of the net all season. Congrats Lys – You are the only striker I’ve heard of score more own goals than goals in a season.
Best: Robbie Brady.
I’ve raved about Brady before here (https://fedginator.wordpress.com/2016/08/07/robbie-brady-why-he-should-be-liverpools-lb-target/) and he made the step back to the EPL with Burnley after 6 months. Since then he has made a impact offensively from a starting position on the left wing, being a creative hub linking the midfield and defence. Something important when the midfield is as workmanlike as Hendrick and Barton. Speaking of Barton…
Worst: Joey Barton.
Barton isn’t here for performance reasons. As a ball winner in Burnley’s midfield he quickly became a starter and a key cog in the midfield after joining in January. The reason Barton is here is that 3 months later he is banned from football for betting on his own games! Burnley, given his track record you should have seen something like this coming. This is on you as much as on him
Worst signing: Michy Batshuayi.
If you were new to football you could be mistaken for thinking Michy was brought in as a social media rep. despite playing 20 times in the league the length of those appearances has averaged less than 12 minutes per game. That said, he’s scored 5 and assisted 1 in that time. Frankly, he hasn’t been bad – just not at the standard of Chelsea’s other players and signings.
Best signing: N’Golo Kante.
Kante is the PFA player of the year and the FWA player of the year. Need I say more? I will anyway though. Kante has been a ball winning machine in the midfield this season – him and Matic a fantastic barrier that few attacks can break down. Key to Chelsea’s title win as he was to Leicester’s.
Best signing: Christian Benteke.
It had to be, didn’t it? He’s scored 15 goals this season and assisted 2 more. To put that in perspective all Palace’s other strikers totalled 3 goals. That’s a fifth of what Christian achieved. Free from a bizarre, ill-fitting stint at Liverpool he’s back doing what he does best: dominating defenders physically and smashing goals in from crosses.
Worst signing: Jonathon Benteke
Who? Good question. Signed from Zulte Waregem in the summer, Christian Benteke’s younger brother joined him at Palace. Or at least he did on the training ground – he’s only totalled 6 minutes of play in all competitions. He looked OK in that time, but the fact he could only manage that much speaks volumes