The Ideal Christmas Gifts For The Premier League's Top Clubs


Manchester United YouTube channel FullTime Devils set up outside Old Trafford at the weekend and asked fans want they wanted for Christmas. Cristiano Ronaldo was a popular, if fanciful choice, as was their very own viral star Andy Tate ("you are nothing, you are a fool..."). One fan answered Emile Heskey.

The premise got me thinking - assuming we have to keep things within the realms of possibility, what would be the ideal Christmas present for the Premier League's top clubs? Here goes...

 

Arsenal - Morgan Schneiderlin

Southampton v Sunderland - Premier League : News Photo

There's no point wishing for Arsene Wenger's exit Arsenal fans. It's not happening and it won't until the man himself decides his work is done, unzips his coat (add another few minutes) and leaves of his own accord (sometime in 2043). Some of you thought you wanted Thierry Henry back in a Gooners shirt, but he's too old and he'll be firing shots at the team as a Sky Sports analyst instead.

So what's left to wish for? Gooners would love to get a eternally fit Jack Wilshere, but that seems as likely as an Arsenal run to the Champions League final, and we promised to keep things real here.

As ever, it comes down to Wenger's lack of a dynamic holding midfielder of drive and quality.

Lots of names have been mentioned over the years, but for some reason Wenger hasn't fancied any of them. Morgan Schneiderlin would come as a proven Premier League performer, who consistently makes tackles and is an excellent distributor at the fulcrum of Southampton's midfield.

And he's tough. And he's French. Get you thinking of anyone Arsenal fans?

 

Chelsea - Diego Costa at full throttle from February to May

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What do you buy the team that has everything? Chelsea could use a long-term replacement for John Terry, but that can wait. What they need right now is streetfighting striker Diego Costa to stay fit and continue bullying every defence he comes up against.

Based on Jose Mourinho's recent comments, Costa's fitness remains a nagging concern. If there was a way for the Spanish international to strengthen and get some rest between here and February, Chelsea might get the very best of him when it matters most - as the title race intensifies and Champions League knockout action begins.

The horse placenta treatment didn't really work for Costa last season, but those were just regular horses. Perhaps it's time for Chelsea to look into dressage Olympic horses deployed by Team GB? Or perhaps those owned by the royal family?

Costa is the 1.90 favourite to finish as the Premier League's top scorer this season

 

Liverpool - Mario Balotelli out, Wilfried Bony in

Swansea City v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League : News Photo

The best gift Brendan Rodgers can get this Christmas is not getting sacked. If that happens, next on his list would be finding somebody who can achieve the ultimate football aim - putting the ball in the onion bag.

It's not Rickie Lambert and it's not Mario Balotelli. In fact the latter is such an incomprehensible distraction at the moment that Liverpool would be best served moving him on in January and taking the hit.

Daniel Sturridge will return, but Wilfried Bony of Swansea is in red-hot form and might just get this labouring Liverpool team moving in something close to the right direction. It's hard to imagine he wouldn't score goals at Anfield.

 

Manchester City - Christian Benteke

West Bromwich Albion v Aston Villa - Premier League : News Photo

Like Chelsea, City are not lacking for talent in their squad. There are no glaring weaknesses to address, but injuries in the striker department might cost them in the short term without a January fix.

It's hard to see Edinson Cavani leaving PSG with Champions League matters ongoing, so that one's a flight of fancy until at least the summer.

Others mentioned include Bony, Saido Berahino and Papiss Cisse, but I already have Bony to Liverpool and I don't think the other two will be moving this window (those around Beharino think he needs time to develop, while Cisse and Newcastle are a happy marriage right now).

Christian Benteke and Aston Villa might just be tempted however. Benteke hasn't hit the heights of last season or the season before just yet, but he may still command a substantial fee on the back of those campaigns' evidence. If City believe in him, this one might happen and City could get themselves a decent fix and some much-needed cover.

Meanwhile, Villa could use the cash injection to buy a few players of their own.

 

Manchester United - Mats Hummels

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This one is so obvious it barely needs explaining. Louis van Gaal's operation are an upside down Christmas tree when it comes to talent - packed with attacking riches, but just a scrawny few branches to show in defence.

Mats Hummels is a world-class solution. He could play in a three or a four and would add leadership, composure and command to United's problem area. With Borussia Dortmund struggling domestically, this could be the ideal time to swoop.

Would United be genuine title contenders if they got him? It's not beyond the realms of possibility.

Hummels is 8.00 to NOT be a Borussia Dortmund Player By the end of the January window