by ScoreBossTeam on Feb 23, 2022 9:09 am
Children are not the only ones to receive beautiful gifts during the Christmas holidays. Football supporters too! During the winter transfer period, European clubs take the opportunity to adjust their team and sometimes change their coach. These movements bring excitement to the fans, and can change the course of the competition until the end of the championship. Here is a review of the main transfers this winter 2021/2022, and a focus on 5 clubs capable of big progress after this transfer window, on which you can rely for your 2022 predictions!
After the crazy summer transfer window of 2021 which saw Messi join PSG and Ronaldo return to Manchester United, the biggest clubs have remained wise during these winter transfers. This 2021/2022 winter transfer window has nevertheless seen some tempting moves among Champions League regulars, including three high-value transfers:
Colombian winger Luis Diaz has signed for Liverpool from FC Porto for 45 million euros.
FC Barcelona have brought in midfielder Ferran Torres from Manchester City for 55 million euros.
Juventus have signed Fiorentina striker Dusan Vlahovic for 70 million euros.
These are great reinforcements for their new clubs, but they rather fit with a strategy of roster management and renewal, without excessive expectations in terms of sporting impact. While the biggest clubs have saved their budgets, other teams lower in the rankings have taken the opportunity to reset sportively and raise their ambition.
Thus, Leipzig, Newcastle, Monaco, Everton and Genoa were particularly active during the break. These clubs looking to be back on the winning track in 2022 can become betting opportunities, as they might progress well beyond their current rankings in the coming months. Here is an analysis of their new potential.
It is an understatement to say that the last months of RB Leipzig have been eventful. This young club is now a German football stronghold, with 3 podiums in the last 3 Bundesliga seasons. But the last summer departure of prodigy coach Julian Nagelsmann, now coach of Bayern Munich, opened a period of turbulence. The club thus pointed far from European places at the winter break.
To regain the top of the ranks, RB Leipzig dismissed coach Jesse Marsch, and made a bold bet with Domenico Tedesco, 36 years old. Tedesco has coached in the Bundesliga before, with a very successful debut season at Schalke 04 in 2018. His charisma and energy are working at the moment, with 4 wins in 5 games since January. Tipsters can therefore count on a rapid rise in the standings for RB Leipzig over the next few weeks!
Last season, Monaco made a fine comeback to the top of Ligue 1, with a convincing third place and interesting style of play by Niko Kovač's troops. Alas, the Croatian technician left the club this winter, because of a backward position in the league and internal criticism of his working methods. As for the players, the transfer window was very calm. Monaco owners have instead bet on welcoming a new coach with a flattering reputation, by signing Philippe Clement.
Clement proposes a committed and dominant football that has led Club Brugge to the title in the last two seasons in the Belgian Pro League. A quality proof ! In addition, his management style, which favors trust and people , seems well suited to the relatively peaceful atmosphere of AS Monaco. The results follow for now, averaging 2 points per game. Notice to punters and tipsters: Monaco is only 6 points from the L1 podium! A qualification in the Champions League is therefore still quite possible at the end of the season if the club confirms its performances.
There is a club for which the notion of a Christmas present plays out to the full, it is Newcastle United. On October 7, 2021, the club entered a new dimension by being bought out by a Saudi consortium. The new owner has almost unlimited resources to make the Magpies the new Manchester City. On the day of the announcement, the reaction from Newcastle fans matched the club's new ambitions.
The support of fans and investors will not be too much to correct a dramatic sporting situation , the club rowing at the bottom of the rankings since the start of the season. To lead the comeback, the club did not choose a big name as coach, but made a wise choice with Eddie Howe. This solid Premier League coach managed to raise and maintain the modest club of AFC Bournemouth in the EPL from 2015 to 2020. His experience is therefore perfectly suited to the current situation of the club, 19th in the standings.
Obviously, with their new financial means, the Toons also made waves during the winter transfer market. Newcastle United does not yet have the sporting level to realize the most amazing transfers, such as those done by PSG and Man United in the summer of 2021. Yet the result was impressive, with more than 130 million euros spent, and major recruits for the NUFC:
Bruno Guimarães, talented Brazilian defensive midfielder from Olympique Lyonnais. (€42 million).
Kieran Trippier, the English right-back from Atlético Madrid (€15m).
The English gem Joe Willock, central defender of Arsenal (30 M€).
As often when a club displays unlimited resources, the amount of certain transfers leaves doubtful, as for attacker Chris Wood of Burnley, bought 30 M€. But in the end, the Newcastle United squad was significantly enhanced, both in quantity and quality.
If you are making predictions on Newcastle matches in the second half of the season, take care to integrate this major change! After a difficult January month against the league leaders, the club will face many mid-table teams in February and March. This is an opportunity to share tips on Newcastle United's surprise victories, and to expect an exit from relegation places for the spring.
Everton have been in the mid rankings of the English Premier League for several seasons now, finishing for example 10th in 2021. A purr that was undermined last summer by the departure of excellent coach Carlo Ancelotti for Real Madrid. His replacement Rafael Benitez failed to convince, and was sacked this winter in an unflattering 15th place.
Frank Lampard, former iconic player and coach of FC Chelsea, arrived in the last hours of January to put the troops in the right direction. He brings harsher management methods, including fines to reboost demobilized players. To help him, the club have strengthened the squad, especially in midfield with the signings of Dele Alli and Donny van de Beek.
These arrivals complete a qualitative team already capable of reaching the first half of the division. What about the psychological effect of changing coaches? For his first match, Lampard saw his troops crush Brentford in the FA Cup (4-1 victory). It's a good sign ! For tipsters of Everton matches, we can therefore expect much better results in the Premier League, and a gradual rise for the Toffees towards the mid-table in the weeks to come.
At Genoa CFC, things have gotten seriously tough this season. This Serie A regular has not left the elite since 2007. But Genoa's disastrous start to the season, which is struggling to get out of the relegation places, has already got the better of 2 coaches, Davide Balardi then Andriy Chevtchenko. Will new coach Alexander Dessin be able to reverse the situation?
The German has started with 2 draws in his first 2 games. His coaching experience with the pros is rather light (an entire season with Ostend in Belgium), and his high-intensity style of play, typical of German gegenpressing , will take time to adapt to the Italian tactical culture. But good news, Dessin didn't come alone!
To help recover, Genoa has provided him with a dozen new players signed or loaned this transfer window, for a total expenditure of almost 20 million euros. Topping the list are forward Kevin Yeboa, midfielder Nadiem Amiri, and Mexican right-back Johan Vásquez. If you're predicting Genoa games, expect better performances in a few weeks, when all these changes start to bear fruit.
To finish this overview of clubs to watch following the 2021/2022 winter transfer window, it is important to keep in mind that the December signings will not reverse the results overnight. A trainer will need time to set up and apply his ideas. Very talented new recruits are sometimes disappointing for several weeks or months, as they have to integrate into a new sporting and collective environment.
Newcastle fans will thus probably have to wait a bit before celebrating the impact of their new recruits in the standings! This necessary latency is also an opportunity to bet on medium and long-term bets. This makes it possible to find interesting and well-paid odds, taking advantage of the gap in appreciation between a club beleaguered in December and back in shape a few months later. For supporters and tipsters alike, patience is essential!