Premier League clubs vote for longer summer transfer window

By AFP: Thursday, February 6th 2020 at 16:08 GMT +3 | Premier League
Manchester City celebrate winning the Premier League title [COURTESY]

Premier League clubs voted on Thursday to push the closing date of the summer transfer window back to bring it into line with the rest of Europe.

At Thursday's shareholders' meeting the clubs decided to revert to the traditional date at the end of August or early September after two seasons when the window closed on the eve of the campaign.

This year's summer window will close at 1600 GMT on Tuesday, September 1 as August 31 is a public holiday.

A Premier League statement read: "At a shareholders' meeting today, Premier League clubs voted to adopt a change to the summer transfer window closing date for season 2020/21.

"This will move the closing date back to the traditional point at the end of August/early September.

"The 2020 closing date will therefore be 17:00 BST (1600 GMT) on 1 September. Clubs agreed after discussing the topic at length at previous shareholders' meetings."

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The switch to an earlier closing date was motivated by complaints from managers that keeping it open after the start of the season was disruptive.

It was thought major leagues across Europe would also bring their own windows forward to fall in line with the Premier League.

When that did not happen a number of English clubs found themselves in the unwanted position of having their players linked with European teams, even though they would be unable to bring in replacements for anyone they sold after the Premier League window closed.

- Damaging distraction -

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was among those to call for the Premier League to align itself with the other top leagues in Europe.

"When they spoke about 'Let's finish it before the season starts then everyone knows their squad' -- that's a good idea," Klopp said in August.

"But then the rest didn't do it and that makes no sense. Can somebody explain what is the benefit for the Premier League?"

Tottenham's season has been disrupted by transfer speculation over a number of players, most notably Christian Eriksen, and manager Mauricio Pochettino paid the price in November for a poor run of results.

"I think that was a big mistake for the Premier League to allow that -- we open the door to different clubs in Europe to try to create confusion within your squad," the former Spurs boss said earlier this season.

"I think after two seasons operating in this way, the Premier League realises that if Europe doesn't change, we need to go back and start to operate in the same way they operate now."

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