Over £1bn was spent by Premier League clubs for the first time this summer, with Paul Pogba’s £89m move back to Manchester United a new world record and Manchester City’s near-£170m outlay the most any side has managed during a transfer window.
Not everyone did all the right business though. Here are a few deals fans were desperate to come off, but didn’t.
Jamie Vardy to Arsenal
The England striker kicked Arsene Wenger in the teeth with two feet when saying his decision to stay at Leicester was made by both head and heart, and Arsenal contingency plan Lucas Perez – something of a Spanish Vardy having only really caught fire last season – is a risky £17m purchase.
It’s hard to see Vardy having the last laugh though, and he would have improved the Gunners. Shame.
Jonas Hector to Liverpool
Credit must be given to Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp for keeping hold of his principles when all around were spending theirs, but the Reds boss might have tried harder to fill the gaping hole at left-back with Germany international Hector.
Saying that, the 26-year-old re-signed with Bundesliga side Koln, his home for the past six years, until 2021 during the summer, so maybe he was unmovable.
Jay Rodriguez to West Brom (or Hull)
Was it really Rodriguez’s lucky equaliser against Sunderland – which crept under young Black Cats stopper Jordan Pickford – that halted talk of the one-cap England man moving to the Hawthorns or KCOM Stadium?
Possibly, as new Southampton boss Claude Puel has been increasing Rodriguez’s game time over the past couple of matches, with the wide-forward also picking up minutes in the 2-0 loss at Manchester United.
It looks like he passed the audition, much to Tony Pulis and Mike Phelan’s chagrin.
William Carvalho to anyone
Man Utd, Arsenal, Tottenham, Liverpool, Chelsea, Everton, Southampton, Leicester, Crystal Palace and Uncle Tom Cobley have all been linked at some point with the Sporting Lisbon anchorman, who shone during Portugal’s triumphant Euro 2016 campaign.
In a position clubs find hard to fill, the 24-year-old looked likely to be part of the Premier League spending rush, making his remaining at Sporting something of a puzzle.
James McCarthy to West Brom
The Baggies could have filled this list on their own, such were their struggles to improve a squad already light on flair, with the likes of Islam Slimani and Moussa Sissoko always looking fanciful targets.
Pulis definitely liked his chances of snagging Rodriguez though, saying as much to the press during the last week of the window, and should have convinced McCarthy to take a chance on guaranteed first-team football for a few months as opposed to a stint on Everton’s bench.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.