The transfer window has shut earlier than ever before, giving us a brief moment to reflect before the Premier League season kicks off on Friday night.
We’ve seen the world record fee for a goalkeeper broken twice by Premier League clubs as the Big Six have predictably spent big — with the exception of Tottenham.
Aside from the almost guaranteed success we expect from some of those signings, there are intriguing stories to be told throughout the league as managers wait to see if gambles pay off and try to fit their new men in.
Here, Sportsmail runs through some most fascinating transfers of the summer window, in no particular order.
Joao Moutinho (Monaco to Wolves, £5m)
A household name for viewers of Champions League and international tournament football over the past decade, Moutinho is one of eight Portuguese players now on the books of newly-promoted Wolves owing to the influence of agent Jorge Mendes.
Having come close to joining Tottenham in his prime in 2012, it will be interesting to finally see how, at 31, he copes in the cut and thrust of a Premier League battle.
Jean Michael Seri (Nice to Fulham, £18m)
Eyebrows were raised when this transfer went through last month, given Seri came close to joining Barcelona last summer and has attracted interest from Arsenal. Fulham’s midfield trio of Kevin McDonald, Stefan Johansen and Tom Cairney were outstanding in their promotion last season so Slavisa Jokanovic must find a way of fitting Seri in without upsetting the balance.
Riyad Mahrez (Leicester to Man City, £60m)
Having kicked up a fuss when a bid from Manchester City was turned down by Leicester in January, the 2016 PFA player of the year got his wish this summer. For years Mahrez, now 27, has been the main man at Leicester. It will be interesting to see if he can adapt to Pep Guardiola’s high pressing style and become more of a team man as he tries to dislodge Raheem Sterling on the right wing.
Max Meyer (Schalke to Crystal Palace, free)
Like Seri, it is fair to say Meyer has attracted more glamorous suitors than Crystal Palace in the past but the German international opted to move to south London on the expiry of his Schalke contract.
Palace fans are waiting to see how he will fit in to Roy Hodgson’s team — as a No 10, a deeper lying midfielder or even out wide — and neutrals will be tuning in to see if Meyer, only 22, has the potential to get back to the Champions League one day.
Richarlison (Watford to Everton, £44m)
Despite flashes of brilliance in his debut Premier League season at Watford, that Everton were prepared to pay £44m for the Brazilian winger came as a surprise.
New manager Marco Silva worked with him on a day-to-day basis at Vicarage Road though and clearly thinks he’s worth it. Only time will tell as the 21-year-old slots in on the left wing of Silva’s new-look side.
James Maddison (Norwich to Leicester, £24m)
Another whose fee raised eyebrows this summer, Maddison is an attacking midfielder who burst on to the scene in the Championship for Norwich last season. Given the fee spent, Claude Puel must be planning to thrust the 21-year-old straight into his team, be it out wide or in his preferred position as a No. 10. He’ll surely do well to live up to his price tag this season.
Fred (Shakhtar Donetsk to Manchester United, £52m)
Despite his massive transfer fee the Brazilian midfielder is something of an unknown quantity on these shores, especially given his limited game-time at the World Cup.
Against a back drop of being the biggest signing in a frustrating window for Jose Mourinho, it will be fascinating to see how Fred copes with the pressure and how the United manager opts to balance his midfield.
Jack Wilshere (Arsenal to West Ham, free)
Which Jack Wilshere will we see at West Ham? The injury-prone Wilshere who lost his place at Arsenal? Or the rejuvenated Wilshere who was a rare shining light in a poor season for the Gunners last season?
His only previous time away from the Emirates was a mediocre season on loan at Bournemouth where he again struggled for form and fitness. Hammers and England fans will be praying the fit and firing Wilshere turns up.
Rui Patricio (Sporting Lisbon to Wolves, free)
Another outstanding coup by Wolves courtesy of Mendes. Patricio has long been established as Portugal’s No. 1. and, at 30, is just coming into his prime as a goalkeeper.
He should have the game to adapt to the more physical nature of the Premier League and keep out Championship title-winning keeper John Ruddy, but off the pitch his transfer could balloon from a free to a £50m one if former club Sporting Lisbon are successful in their complaint to FIFA after he tore up his contract to leave the club.-SUN