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Which Players Will Keep Surprising After the Winter Transfer Window?

A new edition of the winter transfer window opened up, and as usual, cash started to flow, with many teams rearranging their rosters. The English Premier League had some of the best and most expensive transfers among the main European leagues, and after some strong moves were made, we’re ready to see what these new stars on the pitch will offer within the next few weeks.

Chelsea has taken first place in the list of top-spending clubs in the EPL. Keeping humble, one of London’s top squads spent €143 million to add players like Benoit Badiashile, Andrey Santos and Mykhailo Mudryk, who took the prize as the most important winter transfer for the 2022-23 season.

Shakhtar Donetsk's Ukrainian midfielder Mykhailo Mudryk plays the ball during a training session
Shakhtar Donetsk's Ukrainian midfielder Mykhailo Mudryk plays the ball during a training session // Janek Skarzynski - AFP

Let’s check the latest Soccer news, stats, injury reports, and Soccer lines. We’ve got plenty of Soccer picks for you to consider.

Mudryk to Chelsea

Mudryk, a 22-year-old Ukrainian midfielder, is set to destroy EPL defenders left and right. His pace and delightful skills will surely make all of us rise from our seats. I know for a fact Mudryk will give Chelsea some fresh air with his vertical and dominant play style.

Mudryk is decisive in one-on-one situations, which means he’s an elite distributor. Mudryk joined Shakhtar Donetsk’s first team for the 2021-22 season, scoring two goals and seven assists in 11 league games.

Plenty of European clubs initially showed interest in the midfielder, but he decided to join the Blues at the end of it all. “This is a huge club in a fantastic league, and it is a very attractive project for me at this stage of my career. I’m excited to meet my new teammates and I’m looking forward to working and learning under Graham Potter and his staff.” Mudryk said.

Ronaldo to Al-Nassr

After much controversy, Portuguese soccer’s living legend was transferred from Manchester United to Arabian side Al-Nassr. Cristiano Ronaldo signed a two-and-a-half-year contract until June 2025, where he’ll receive approximately €200 million from the club.

A bad relationship with Man United coach Erik ten Hag is suspected to be the reason for his departure from the English giants. Ronaldo accused ten Hag in a TV interview of feeling provoked by the coach, adding to his lack of empathy with the players.

Joining a non-European team should be an enormous downgrade for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner. Ronaldo is getting a lot of media attention around his decision, which basically means he’s retiring from high-performance soccer while still being one of the best players in this game.

Ronaldo’s arrival will mark a new beginning for the Saudi Arabian League, making it much more relevant and competitive. There are rumors about a couple of big names in touch with Al-Nassr and Al Hilal, such as Keylor Navas, Lionel Messi and Sergio Ramos. These teams have juicy budgets, so we’ll likely see a few stars join this league as part of their retirement plan.

Nassr's Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo runs with the ball during the Saudi Pro League football match between Al-Nassr and Al-Ettifaq
Nassr’s Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo runs with the ball during the Saudi Pro League football match between Al-Nassr and Al-Ettifaq // Fayez Nureldine

Depay to Atletico

An unexpected transfer if you ask me, but still an interesting one. Memphis Depay joined Atlético Madrid, leaving Barcelona for approximately three million euros. Depay will be Joao Felix’s replacement after the Portuguese midfielder joined Chelsea on loan for the rest of this season.

This is not the first time Atletico has taken advantage of Barcelona. In 2013 Atleti signed David Villa for only €2.1m. Then signed Luis Suarez for €9m. If we put it in perspective, that’s a steal for Suarez in his prime. Both strikers were crucial for the club at that time, with Villa being an important piece in conquering La Liga in 2014.

Depay was essential in Ronald Koeman’s era, scoring 13 goals in 38 games. Now, after 18 months in Barcelona, he will try to surpass his previous tenure with Atletico. The transition from French to Spanish soccer was not easy, with different styles and players coming into the picture. Honestly, ever since his days at Olympique Lyon, I haven’t seen prime Depay. But who knows, maybe with Simeone’s guidance and a new challenge in Madrid, Depay might be able to shine once again.

Gakpo to Liverpool

The 23-year-old Dutch star was transferred from PSV to Liverpool after a wonderful World Cup performance that drew the English team’s attention. Prior to the 2022 Qatar World Cup, Cody Gakpo was Eredivisie’s top scorer with nine goals and 12 assists. On the field, Gakpo is a strong player with excellent pace, solid passing skills and even better scoring prowesses.

“I think this is a great club for me to come in and try to show what I can [do] and try to help the team to achieve more beautiful moments that they already did in the past years,” Gakpo said after being presented as a new Liverpool player.

Gakpo was born and raised in Eindhoven, playing for his hometown club, PSV, since he was a kid. He finally made his senior debut in 2018, with 159 appearances and 55 goals with PSV’s senior team. His most important goal to date has to be his game-winner against AFC Ajax to secure the KNVB Cup. I’m excited to see his strength and ability shining through at Anfield.

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