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Premier League transfer window to close prior to start of season

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A welcome change, even if it’s in isolation.

Merrythought Staff Make Commemorative Teddy Bears Ahead Of The Royal Wedding And Olympics
Next summer, that bear can’t leave its club once the season starts
Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

One of the most annoying things about the summer transfer window is that it closes three weeks after the season starts. This leads to two main things: A squad that isn’t complete when the season starts, and hilarious overreactions to a three game sample size that come from the fact perception that a club can still fix all their problems by just buying their way out of it.

Well, that is about to be a problem of the past - sort of. The Premier League voted today to end their transfer window the Thursday before the season starts, beginning next summer. What that means is that squads, in theory, can be settled and more fully ready to roll come the first game of the season.

The truck-sized loophole in this plan, however, is that England is so far the only team country to enact this limit new deadline. So, in theory, a player could be bought by another European club and the English team would have no mechanism by which to replace him. I don’t, however, think this will be a huge problem, for a couple reasons.

For one, that problem will only affect a small handful of players/clubs. After all, Real Madrid isn’t going over Bournemouth’s roster with a fine tooth comb, looking for the perfect Bournemouth player to add to their squad; it’s only the Philippe Coutinhos of the world that might go without being replaced. But even that isn’t super likely - Coutinho didn’t get sold this window because Liverpool didn’t want to sell him, and I don’t see that changing just because the deadline moves up a month. For all that they seem not to be, contracts are actually a thing, and it’d be a simple thing for English clubs to say “WE’RE NOT SELLING” the day that the window in England closes.

The other thing is, I believe that after a season or two, the rest of UEFA’s clubs will probably implement something similar. England may not be the best league in Europe, but it’s by far the most lucrative, and as a prime economic driver they can kind of set the tone for things like this.

I, for one, look forward to a transfer window that closes before the season starts, just because it’s a month less of the same story we have to write over and over and over again, and that’s more time we can focus on the team and the games. But that’s just me.