Byline News

10.03.20

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Six transfers to look out for in the February transfer window update

Just because most of the major transfer windows slammed shut at the end of January doesn’t mean that there weren’t interesting deals taking place across the world in February. The second half of our winter update features the deals that took place in the Russian and Chinese leagues, the final moves in MLS before the start of the 2020 season and free transfers in the EFL and beyond.

Here are some of the moves that were slightly off the beaten track that we took a shine to.

Six transfers to look out for in the February transfer window update

Siem de Jong - Ajax to FC Cincinnati

Cincinnati broke all sorts of unwanted records in their debut MLS campaign, but they have recruited well in the off-season and they look poised to have a much stronger 2020. Perhaps the standout addition to the team was former Ajax schemer Siem de Jong, who can play both as a second striker and a more traditional No. 10 and figures to be the creative heartbeat for the Ohioans. While his stint in England didn’t quite work out, de Jong regularly delivered the goods for Ajax and Cincinnati will be pinning their hopes for the season on how well he dovetails with fellow new recruits Haris Medunjanin, Yuya Kubo and Jurgen Locadia.

Notable Attributes: Movement, Versatility, Vision, Passing

A screenshot of Siem de Jong's profile in Football Manager 2020

Romain Alessandrini - LA Galaxy to Qingdao Huanghai

Alessandrini has been known for his pace, dribbling and creativity from the wide areas throughout his career and he figures to be one of the most exciting additions to the Chinese top flight from this transfer window. Fresh from a fruitful stint in the USA with LA Galaxy, the former Rennes winger has the star quality that a newly-promoted side like Qingdao need. The club also signed 23-year-old Joseph Minala from Lazio during the transfer window. Yes… that Joseph Minala.

Notable Attributes: Agility, Acceleration, Dribbling, First Touch

A formation screenshot from Football Manager 2020

Darron Gibson - Free Agent to Salford City

‘The Ammies’ have made a solid start to life in the English Football League, reaching the final of the Leasing.com trophy and sitting within reach of a Sky Bet League Two play-off spot with only a handful of league games to go. Gibson, who has extensive experience with the Republic of Ireland and in England’s higher divisions, has joined Salford until the end of the season and offers the sort of midfield steel that could help the club make their debut EFL campaign one to remember.

Notable Attributes: Determination, Bravery, Passing, Long Shots

Tony Watt - CSKA Sofia to Motherwell

A lover of Football Manager, Tony Watt has once again returned to Scottish football looking for a new team he can call home. The former Celtic man has shown flashes of his ability for his recent sides… could he be what the Steelmen, who started the season so strongly, need to keep their bid for European football on track?

Notable Attributes: Balance, Pace, Strength, Movement

Gedion Zelalem – Sporting Kansas City to New York City FC

This might have flown under the radar a bit but former Arsenal academy prospect Zelalem made the move from Sporting Kansas City to link up with New York City FC. The wiry midfielder has not quite hit the heady expectations placed on him when he was a teenager, but his talent is still plain to see. Perhaps he’ll find a home with NYCFC and he can be the man to drive them to a first MLS title after some near-misses in the last few years.

Notable Attributes: Vision, Technique, Flair, Passing

A screenshot of Gedion Zelalem's profile in Football Manager 2020

Sam Larsson - Feyenoord to Dalian Professional

After five-and-a-half successful years in the Netherlands, Swedish winger Larsson has made the move to China to join Dalian Professional. Fleet of foot, Larsson is a dynamic option capable of delivering great crosses, something that will be a great asset for Rafael Benitez and the way he likes his side to play. The club from Northeast China finished mid-table last season, but by adding someone like Larsson to a squad also containing former Napoli dynamo Marek Hamsik and internationals from Venezuela and Ghana, they could be figuring in the title conversation in 2020.

Notable Attributes: Flair, Dribbling, Acceleration, Crossing