Manchester United, Chelsea, and Tottenham were all left scrambling forforwards on what was a damp squib of a transfer deadline day as last-minute panic left United desperately trying to seal a deal for random target Odion Ighalo.
While Mick McCarthy is always prepared to cut a little slack for a couple of his more experienced and established names, the manager has never sought to minimise the weight he attaches to the general requirement that, in order to play for their country, his players really need to be playing for their clubs.
Tottenham appear to have done good business this summer as Mauricio Pochettino completed the signings of Giovani Lo Celso and Ryan Sessegnon to go along with Tanguy Ndombele, prompting comparisons with three of the most dramatic transfer days in the club’s history — but they have not all ended well.
Manchester United fans were involved in more football-related arrests where racism was an aggravating factor or a feature than any other club in England in the four seasons up to 2017-18, data from the UK Home Office shows.
The battle for promotion from the Championship reaches a crescendo this weekend with at least eight teams still dreaming of making it into the Premier League and two able to seal it right now. But how well prepared are any of the sides for what could lie ahead?