Football News

Harry Maguire & David Luiz were the signings of the summer, says Robbie Fowler

By Ben Green

Published: 14:41, 11 August 2019

Liverpool legend Robbie Fowler believes Manchester United and Arsenal pulled off the deals of the summer with the signings of Harry Maguire and David Luiz.  

Maguire swapped Leicester City for Old Trafford in a deal worth £80m, while Luiz traded Chelsea for their London rivals on deadline day for £8m.

Were Maguire & Luiz the best deals? Five things to know…

  • There was no secret made about Man Utd’s desperation to sign a new centre-back.
  • Maguire was the only player in the 2018/19 PL season to maintain a 70% success rate for aerial duels and take-ons.
  • Arsenal, likewise, were in dire need of defensive reinforcements.
  • Signing a vastly experienced PL player in Luiz for less than £10m has been met with widespread adulation from Arsenal fans.
  • Fowler has now suggested that both clubs pulled off the signings of the summer.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Unai Emery were both eager to bolster their defensive ranks this summer, and have done so abundantly, leaving Fowler in awe of their transfer activity.

“Harry Maguire will come as no surprise as my top pick for the best buy,” Fowler wrote in his column for the Mirror. “I know it was a crazy amount of money, but I don’t go with the idea Manchester United overpaid. What does that even mean?

“United had to pay whatever it took to get Maguire and, for me, he can transform their defence in the same way.

“My other ‘best buy’ of the window comes in the bargain section and the plaudits go to Arsenal… for signing David Luiz.

“Yes, I know there are detractors, I know so many people don’t rate him. But £8m for a Brazil international defender who’s won the Premier League, Champions League, two Europa Leagues and two French leagues along with a Confederations Cup?

“That’s a steal for that sort of experience. I think Arsenal may just have got the best of this window.”

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Fowler praises “good window for Arsenal”

Assessing the Gunners’ transfer business a little further, Fowler went on to laud the signings Emery made across the pitch and not just in the defensive third.

He added: “They’ve got some exciting attacking players and also brought in Kieran Tierney for a decent price. Again, they desperately needed defenders and now they have two with pedigree.

“They also spent a surprising amount of money on an 18-year-old centre-back William Saliba.

“Dani Ceballos has Real Madrid quality, so he’s a good addition, and the Brazilian kid Gabriel Martinelli also looks a prospect.

“They’ll do better this season. Maybe they need a bit more in midfield to challenge City or Liverpool – but it’s been a good window for Arsenal.”