Premier League January transfer window grades

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The January transfer window is done and my word did Premier League teams go for it.

[ MORE: Full list of January transfers in PL ]

Newcastle, Tottenham, Everton and Liverpool all did plenty of business, as almost $400 million was spent this January. That is the second highest amount in Premier League history in terms of the January window, and the highest net spend in January in PL history.

We had deadline day drama, shock moves and some intriguing gambles by clubs and players, as this transfer window delivered.

Below we deliver our Premier League January transfer window grades, as we dish out a grade to all 20 teams based on their business.


Premier League January transfer window grades

Arsenal: C-

They moved on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to Barcelona, which is risky given their current forward options, but was the right call to help Mikel Arteta implement a new identity and style. Not to mention removing $33.4 million from their wage bill over the next 18 months. Not bringing in another forward to help Lacazette and Nketiah is a bold move and one which could cost them a top four spot, and considering they’re so close to a top four finish this season it seems like an unnecessary gamble. Other than that, USMNT goalkeeper Matt Turner will arrive in the summer and provide competition to Aaron Ramsdale and the Gunners got rid of a lot of deadwood. Their squad is streamlined and they’re all set for a big summer of expensive, and very selective, recruitment. They pushed to sign big players in January but couldn’t get it over the line, which was disappointing as Vlahovic and Guimares looked likely for a while.

Aston Villa: B+

Lovely window from Steven Gerrard’s side. Lucas Digne and Philippe Coutinho add genuine quality and are big improvements to their starting lineup, plus Calum Chambers is versatile and has great experience. They want a central midfielder but will wait until the summer. Villa also moved on a few fringe players and did some really smart business.

Brentford: B

Christian Eriksen (boy, it will be great to see him back in action) will become the best player in Brentford’s history, so his signing on a short-term deal is massive. But the Bees should have done more business, especially defensively. Thomas Frank’s side have wobbled big-time in recent months and although Eriksen will provide amazing quality once he gets up to speed following his seven-month lay-off, you worry about Brentford defensively. Can they stay in the Premier League?

Brighton: C

The Seagulls have put themselves in a great position and didn’t really need much. They continue to hunt for a striker and signed Deniz Undav, who they immediately loaned back to Royale Union Saint-Gilloise for the rest of the season. Losing Dan Burn is a blow, but they have some center backs ahead of him and will cope. Steady window, but could they have made a big move for a striker to push for European qualification? That isn’t really their style.

Burnley: D

One in and one out, as Chris Wood was sold to Newcastle and Wout Weghorst was signed to replace him. You could argue Burnley have upgraded this position and they needed to in order to give themselves a chance of staying up. They aren’t a club that will spend big and they still look short in several areas, which will worry Sean Dyche as they have plenty of games to make up in the second half of the season after so many postponed games.

Chelsea: D

Quiet window for Chelsea as they tried to bring in a wing-back but couldn’t get a deal over the line. That will disappoint Tuchel, as wing backs are so important to the way he plays. Chelsea may now switch to a back four and getting Rudiger, Christensen and Azpilicueta to sign new deals is now the focus. Interest in Ousmane Dembele late in the window shows they are thinking about attacking changes in the summer too. That could be bad news for USMNT star Christian Pulisic…

Crystal Palace: D

Jean-Philippe Mateta was the only big incoming, as his loan was turned into a permanent deal. Luke Plange was a purchase for the future. Palace tried to get players in on loan in attacking areas but Donny van de Beek, Dele Alli and Eddie Nketiah didn’t fancy a move to Selhurst. Patrick Vieira’s boys need to finish off more chances if they’re going to kick on in the second half of the season.

Everton: B-

Very flashy deadline day moves for Dele Alli and Donny van de Beek to go along with announcing Frank Lampard as their new manager. Everton’s squad is bloated and there will be a huge restructure this summer. A good window for the Toffees, despite losing Digne for no reason, but do they have the right kind of players to drag them away from a potential relegation scrap?

Leeds: D

No incomings but Leeds have some superb individuals and shouldn’t get dragged into a relegation battle. But they could. Injuries haven’t been kind to them and they need Phillips and Bamford back very soon. They look set to make a big move for USMNT’s Brenden Aaronson in the summer after being batted away by RB Salzburg in January.

Leicester City: D

They needed defensive reinforcements but couldn’t get a move for Nat Phillips, and others, over the line. Leicester just need to get players healthy and they need to lock in Youri Tielemans to a new deal.

Liverpool: B+

Very good window as they signed Luis Diaz ahead of PL rivals and he will be a huge player for Jurgen Klopp in the coming years. Aside from that, some young players got good loan moves and a move for Fulham’s star youngster Fabio Carvalho seems to be lined up for the summer. Diaz was the biggest buy by a PL club in January and continues Liverpool’s focus of buying quality over quantity.

Manchester City: C+

Julian Alvarez is a brilliant signing for the future, but he won’t link up with City until the summer. Aside from that, very quiet window.

Manchester United: D

No incomings at United and they’re trying to assess the current players they have before Ralf Rangnick is expected to move into his consultancy role in the summer. Moving on Anthony Martial and Donny van de Beek on loan made sense, while United’s main long-term need is Declan Rice a world class holding midfielder.

Newcastle United: A-

Great window for Newcastle, as their owners spent more money than any club in Europe in January. The pressure is now on Eddie Howe to deliver. Bruno Guimares is their marquee signing, while Kieran Trippier, Dan Burn, Matt Targett and Chris Wood all have huge Premier League experience and that will be massive in their upcoming relegation scrap.

Norwich City: D-

After some recent wins, Dean Smith’s side are looking good and they did a lot of business last summer. But could they have be on the hunt for a forward who would have made the difference and scored the goals to keep them out of the bottom three? Probably.

Southampton: D

Veteran Willy Caballero arrived on a free transfer to add depth to their goalkeeping ranks and that was that. Saints were on the hunt for a creative attacker, but with new owners arriving in January, they are assessing the squad and putting a recruitment plan in place for this summer. Expect Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side to go after plenty more talented youngsters similar to Armando Broja (who they are trying to sign permanently from Chelsea) and Tino Livramento.

Tottenham: A-

A very busy deadline day delivered what Tottenham and Antonio Conte needed: some quality signings and plenty of deadwood cut adrift. Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski both arrived from Juventus and will start in central midfield and out wide right away. Dele Alli was sold to Everton, while Tanguy Ndombele, Bryan Gil and Giovano Lo Celso were all loaned out. Conte knows he needs a few more defenders and a striker to continue his rebuild, but this was a very decent start.

Watford: C-

New manager Roy Hodgson was the Hornets’ big January arrival, but they did bolster their squad with plenty of new buys. Some have already featured, while Samuel Kalu is a real talent. Watford pushed hard to try and sign a new goalkeeper, and they needed more defensive help this window.

West Ham: D-

This feels like a missed opportunity for the Hammers. David Moyes’ side pushed hard to sign Jesse Lingard and Darwin Nunez late in the window and those are the caliber of players they need to push into the top four. The Hammers’ squad is looking a little thin in attack and at center back. Now seemed like the perfect time to back Moyes in the transfer market.

Wolves: C

See above. Wolves signed Hwang-hee Chan on a permanent deal, which is a very good move, but they lost Adama Traore to Barcelona. They are on the cusp of the top four battle and if they made a big move for a striker in this window it could have pushed them into the Champions League.


Ghana vs Uruguay, live! Score, updates, how to watch, stream, videos

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This is going to be an epic Group H finale as there is so much history between Ghana and Uruguay and both teams still have a chance of reaching the last 16.

STREAM LIVE GHANA V URUGUAY

When you say Luis Suarez, Ghana and World Cup together, most people think of his incredible handball to deny the Black Stars victory in the quarterfinals of the 2010 World Cup. We all know what happened next as Ghana’s Asamoah Gyan missed the spot kick after Suarez had been sent off, then Uruguay won on penalty kicks to deny Ghana an historic semifinal berth.

The whole of Ghana has never forgot that and the Black Stars get their chance for revenge in this clash.

[ MORE: Group H standings, schedule, rankings ]

Focusing on this game, Ghana provided superb entertainment in their 3-2 win against South Korea and know a point against Uruguay will be enough to reach the last 16 if South Korea fail to beat Portugal in the other final Group H game. Thomas Partey has been superb in midfield, Mohammed Kudus scored twice up top in their big win and the additions of Tariq Lamptey and Mohammed Salisu just before this tournament has made a big difference.

As for Uruguay, they’ve huffed and puffed in their opening two games but have failed to score as Darwin Nunez, Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani have all looked off the pace. Rodrigo Bentancur and Federico Valverde have been great in midfield but is this one tournament too far for Uruguay’s incredible, but ageing, core? They need to win to have a chance of reaching the last 16.

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub

Here is everything you need for Ghana vs Uruguay. 


How to watch Ghana vs Uruguay live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 10am ET – Friday, December 2
Stadium: Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)


Key storylines, players to watch closely

Ghana will likely start the same team which started against South Korea as they looked dangerous in attack but they will have to improve defensively and keep the ball a bit better. The Ayew brothers (Jordan and Andre) provide so much experience, while Inaki Williams and Kudus knit everything together well in the final third.

Uruguay have to go for it, so does that mean starting Suarez, Cavani and Nunez up top together? If they do that they could cause Ghana, who have looked shaky at the back, plenty of problems. They may go back to a back four and the trio of Bentancur, Vecino and Valverde to hold down midfield.


Ghana quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 61
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 4
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from CAF via playoffs
Coach: Otto Addo
Key players: Jordan Ayew, Andre Ayew, Thomas Partey, Jeff Schlupp

Uruguay quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 14
World Cup titles: 2 (1930, 1950)
World Cup appearances: 14
How they qualified: Qualified from CONMEBOL
Coach: Diego Alonso
Key players: Luis Suarez, Federico Valverde, Darwin Nunez, Rodrigo Bentancur


South Korea vs Portugal, live! Score, updates, how to watch, stream link, videos

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South Korea have a must-win Group H finale against Portugal, who have already made it through to the last 16 of the World Cup.

STREAM LIVE SOUTH KOREA v PORTUGAL

Heung-min Son has struggled and South Korea have just one point on the board so far from their games against Uruguay and Ghana. Last time out they lost 3-2 to Ghana in excrutiating fashion after fighting back from 2-0 down to make it 2-2. Now more than ever, Son’s country needs him to deliver as he has failed to score or assist in the opening two games and looks extremely frustrated. South Korea must win to have a chance of reaching the last 16 ahead of Uruguay and Ghana.

[ MORE: Group H standings, schedule, rankings ]

The opposite emotions are true for Portugal who beat Ghana 3-2 and then Uruguay 2-0 to breeze into the last 16 and they only need a point to secure top spot in Group H. Bruno Fernandes and Bernardo Silva have been pulling the strings and this Portugal side is stacked in attack with Rafael Leao and Joao Felix rotated in and out of the team to support Cristiano Ronaldo.

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub

Here is everything you need for South Korea vs Portugal. 


How to watch South Korea vs Portugal live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 10am ET – Friday, December 2
Stadium: Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)


Key storylines, players to watch closely

Obviously the stage is set for Heung-min Son. He is a hero in his homeland and he’s worked so hard to be fit for this tournament after the nasty facial injury but looks out of sorts on the left. Perhaps he can moved inside or slightly deeper to get on the ball more? Cho Gue-sung scored two beauties against Ghana and if South Korea can put more quality deliveries into the box, they will cause problems. They simply have to go all-out for the win and that approach saw them deliver their best play of the tournament in the second half against Ghana. However, South Korea’s Portuguese coach Paulo Bento was sent off at the end of that disappointing defeat to Ghana as he was unhappy with a late corner not being allowed as the final whistle was blown. He will miss this game through suspension. 

For Portugal it’s about resting key players and warming up for their last 16 clash. Winning the group is essential as that means they would face one of Serbia, Switzerland or Cameroon in the last 16 rather than Brazil. It is very unlikely Portugal won’t finish top, but it could happen. Basically, Ghana would have to win big to overturn a three-goal difference by beating Uruguay and Portugal would also have to lose against South Korea. It could happen but Fernando Santos can rotate his team and still have so much quality on the pitch as Goncalo Ramos, Diogo Dalot, Matheus Nunes and Rafael Leao could all start.


South Korea quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 28
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 10
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from AFC
Coach: Paulo Bento
Key players: Heung-min Son, Young-gwon Kim, In-beom Hwang, Woo-yeong Jeong

Portugal quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 9
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 8
How they qualified: Qualified from UEFA via playoffs
Coach: Fernando Santos
Key players: Cristiano Ronaldo, Ruben Neves, Bruno Fernandes, Joao Cancelo


World Cup 2022 odds: Favorites, underdogs, group stage winners

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The World Cup 2022 odds are already intriguing.

Who’s going to lift the World Cup trophy on Sunday, Dec. 18, and what are the current betting odds for them to do so?

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub

Odds for not only who will be crowned world champions this winter in Qatar, but also for each one of the eight groups, were posted.

Check out the 2022 World Cup winners betting odds below, provided by our partner, PointsBet.


World Cup 2022 schedule, start time, dates, how to watch live

  • When: November 20, 2022 to December 18, 2022
  • Group stage game kick-off times: 5am, 8am, 10am, 11am, 2pm (all ET)
  • Location: Qatar
  • TV channels en Español: Telemundo, Universo, Peacock
  • Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)

Follow along with ProSoccerTalk for the latest news, scores, storylines, and updates surrounding the 2022 World Cup, and be sure to subscribe to NBC Sports on YouTube!


World Cup 2022 odds – winners (As of December 2)

PointsBet is our Official Sports Betting Partner and we may receive compensation if you place a bet on PointsBet for the first time after clicking our links. Here are the odds provided by our partner, PointsBet.

Brazil +225
Argentina +475
France +500
Spain +600
England +900
Portugal +1200
Netherlands +1800
Croatia +3300
Uruguay +6600
Japan +6600
Switzerland +10000
USA +10000
Morocco +10000
Senegal +10000
Serbia +20000
Poland +25000
Australia +25000
Ghana +75000
South Korea +100000
Cameroon +200000

Qatar – Eliminated
Canada – Eliminated
Ecuador – Eliminated
Wales – Eliminated
Iran – Eliminated
Germany – Eliminated
Belgium – Eliminated
Denmark – Eliminated
Costa Rica – Eliminated
Tunisia – Eliminated
Mexico – Eliminated
Saudi Arabia – Eliminated


World Cup odds – group stage winners (At start of tournament, November 20)

PointsBet is our Official Sports Betting Partner and we may receive compensation if you place a bet on PointsBet for the first time after clicking our links. Here are the odds provided by our partner, PointsBet.

Group A

Netherlands -223
Senegal +400
Ecuador +550
Qatar +1600

Group B

England -304
Wales +550
USA +600
Iran +1800

Group C

Argentina -223
Poland +450
Mexico +450
Saudi Arabia +2500

Group D

France -250
Denmark +275
Tunisia +1400
Australia +2000

Group E

Spain -112
Germany +110
Japan +1200
Costa Rica +5000

Group F

Belgium -200
Croatia +250
Morocco +1000
Canada +1200

Group G

Brazil -250
Switzerland +500
Serbia +600
Cameroon +1200

Group H

Portugal -154
Uruguay +200
Ghana +1100
South Korea +1100


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What are the group stage tiebreaker rules at the 2022 World Cup?

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The 2022 World Cup is already well underway and through the first matches of the group stage, the tournament has been marked by unpredictability and upsets, including Saudi Arabia toppling Argentina and Japan edging out Germany thanks to a late comeback. While one loss doesn’t necessarily mean these pre-tournament contenders won’t make it to the knockout rounds, it does make the path significantly harder. Read on to see the World Cup tiebreakers that may come into play in determining which teams advance to the next round and continue on the path to soccer’s greatest glory.

How many teams will advance from the World Cup group stage?

Of the 32 teams at the 2022 World Cup, only 16 will advance to the next round of the tournament. The top two teams in each of the eight groups will advance to the Round of 16. From there, the tournament will be a single-elimination competition, with eight teams making it through to the quarterfinals and four to the semifinals. The winners of the semifinal matches will play in the final, while the losers will meet in the third-place playoff.

RELATED: World Cup 2022 schedule – how to watch, groups, calendar, match schedule, brackets, dates

What are the tiebreakers for the group stage at the World Cup?

If two or more teams have an equal number of points after the conclusion of group stage matches, FIFA will use the following tiebreakers to determine which nations advance:

  • Goal differential – the team with the higher goal differential (total goals scored minus total goals allowed) will have the higher ranking
  • Number of goals scored – If multiple teams have the same number of points and equal goal differential, the team with more goals scored will be given a higher ranking than the lesser-scoring team

World Cup draw rules

If two or more teams are still “tied” after applying these tiebreakers, FIFA moves on to a second round of tiebreakers:

  • Greatest number of points obtained in group matches between the teams concerned
  • Superior goal difference resulting from the group matches between the team concerned
  • Greatest number of goals scored in all matches between the teams concerned
  • Highest team conduct score – team conduct score is based on the number of yellow and red cards a team has obtained. The team with the highest team conduct score will receive the higher ranking.
    • Yellow Card: Minus one point
    • Indirect Red Card (acquired via two yellow cards): Minus three points
    • Direct Red Card: Minus four points
    • Yellow Card and Direct Red Card: Minus five points

RELATED: PST’s 2022 World Cup predictions: Standings, winner, awards, USMNT fate

World Cup yellow card rules

The “team conduct” tiebreaker or “fair play” tiebreaker was first used at the 2018 World Cup – Japan and Senegal stood equal after all other tiebreakers were applied but Senegal had more yellow cards and was subsequently eliminated. Japan advanced to the Round of 16.

World Cup 2022 schedule, start time, dates, how to watch live

  • When: November 20, 2022 to December 18, 2022
  • Group stage game kick-off times: 5am, 8am, 10am, 11am, 2pm (all ET)
  • Location: Qatar
  • TV channels en Español: Telemundo, Universo, Peacock
  • Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)

Group A | Group B | Group C | Group D | Group E | Group F | Group G | Group H

Follow along with ProSoccerTalk for the latest news, scores, storylines, and updates surrounding the 2022 World Cup, and be sure to subscribe to NBC Sports on YouTube!