Man Utd signing Varane is more impactful than Grealish or Lukaku transfers

Raphael Varane will turn Manchester United into title contenders – he’s the signing of the summer in the Premier League.

I think it’s as tight as it’s ever been this season and there’s four teams who could win the league.

United weren’t one of them but Varane changes that. I think that’s a major signing.

With all the class and experience he brings with him from Real Madrid, I think he’s going to have a massive impact.

Romelu Lukaku is a great signing for Chelsea and they will be contenders again. But they won the Champions League without him.

Jack Grealish improves Manchester City. But they won the league without him.

And while Liverpool fell off the radar with Virgil van Dijk out, he’s fit again, and we know they can win the league with him in the team.

But Varane is a game-changer for United – that’s why he’s the signing of the summer.

With him coming in alongside Harry Maguire, United now have a new Vidic and Ferdinand partnership to rely on at the back.

Maguire can get tight to people and Varane can sweep up behind with his pace.

United played with two holding midfield players a lot last season because Ole Gunnar Solskjaer didn’t trust his defenders.

They won’t need to do that now. They were as good a counter-attacking team as anyone last season.

But now, with Varane, they can take more risks and play on the halfway line. That’s important against the lesser teams.

You can really put them under pressure instead of having that fear of one long ball over the top catching you out.

United have signed well. Jadon Sancho with his guile and movement will make it easier to break teams down who just come to defend.

And they now have a lot of matchwinners in him, Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes and Edinson Cavani.

The one question mark is how many games Cavani can play at his age, and what they do when he’s not available.

But United look like making the biggest leap of the top four teams this season and they should be title contenders again.

City are always going to be up there and signing Grealish takes the pressure off Kevin De Bruyne a bit.

They don’t have to rely on him so much or try to rush him back from injury.

  • Thomas Tuchel's phone call 'sealed the deal' as Romelu Lukaku rejoins Chelsea

Lukaku will give Chelsea more of an edge too. He’s very good at rolling players and defenders are terrified of his pace.

All of a sudden space will open up for players like Mason Mount and Kai Havertz.

Lukaku’s willing to chase balls down the channels as well, and we know he can score goals in this league.

He’s a great signing – and when you look at the strength of their squad it’s obvious Chelsea are going to challenge.

But for me United have done the best business this window in getting Varane.

What can Pochettino teach Messi?

Manchester City fans must wonder if they’ve missed the boat in the Champions League with Lionel Messi going to Paris St-Germain.

They had a massive chance to win it last season, didn’t get over the line, and now there’s a potential super team around in Paris.

But Mauricio Pochettino is going to have to deal with three big egos now at PSG.

Neymar and Kylian Mbappe were the big dogs there. Now they’re Messi’s sidekicks. Will it put their noses out of joint?

  • Lionel Messi admits he has been learning English ever since his Man City links began

And how will a team with all that attacking talent defend? They signed Sergio Ramos but he looked his age in the Champions League last season.

Messi is 34 now too. It’s getting harder and harder for him every year. Sometimes he’s just strolling around in games.

And if you’re Pochettino, what do you do? Do you go out on the training pitch and tell Messi what to do? What can Pochettino teach Messi?

There are plenty of ways it can go wrong. But if they get it right and it all clicks, PSG will be unstoppable.

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Arsenal need Aubameyang on top form

Arsenal need a bounceback year from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

And they need to find an identity – because I didn’t see one last season. What sort of team are they trying to be?

Sometimes they were tight at the back and ultra cautious. But other times teams were breaking on them three v two at corners.

Aubameyang needs to step up for me. He’s set such high standards the last few years that it’s hard to keep it going.

  • Arsenal have ‘concerns’ from background checks on Houssem Aouar – but may still sign him

But he let himself down last season and Arsenal still rely on him so much for goals. He needs to get back to working hard.

They won’t finish in the top four. But if Mikel Arteta gets them together they could finish fifth or sixth and that would be progress.

Playing once a week will be huge. Having no European football to worry about means they can spend all week preparing for games.

They need to make the most of that. And Ben White makes a big difference for them because he’s a very good defender.

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