The boys at African Football HQ just keep on giving, and it’s another bonus episode this week as Ed Dove and Malek Shafei dive into deadline day and review the transfer window from an African point of view.
Of course, Thomas Partey’s transfer to Arsenal—a move which got over the line just before the deadline passed—is a major focus of this week’s episode.
Malek isn’t happy that the Gunners took so long to get this one over the line, although perhaps his concerns are more linked to a worry that Partey’s arrival spells the end of Mohamed Elneny’s time in the Londoners’ first team.
While Dove has no doubts that Partey is destined to be a success story at the Emirates Stadium, he also has some unanswered questions about the move.
Can this really be considered a step up for the central midfielder, to swap a team regularly competing in the latter stages of the Champions League for a team who are unlikely to even reach the UCL next season?
Similarly, is he really what Arsenal need right now?
The Gunners have ample midfield brawn in the form of Granit Xhaka and Elneny, but without Houssem Aouar, can Dani Ceballos offer enough creativity in the heart of the park?
Perhaps the Franco-Algerian, rather than Ghana’s Partey, should have been a priority for the Gunners.
Elsewhere, the pair disagree about Bayern Munich’s decision to sign Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting; for Dove, it’s a potential masterstroke, while Shafei can’t understand why the German giants have opted to move for the Paris Saint-Germain cast-off.
Also on the agenda, we debate whether Mbwana Samatta’s escape from Aston Villa to Fenerbahce might see Tanzanian supporters and Turkish fans kick off on social media, while Dove is also concerned about Habib Diallo’s move to Strasbourg.
On paper, Racing might have pulled off a superb move, but Diallo’s revelation on deadline day that he didn’t want to move to the club—and would have preferred to stay with their rivals Metz—may be a hard one to swallow for Thierry Laurey’s side.
We also look, finally, at the players who didn’t get a move away from their current employers during the transfer window; what will that failure mean for the likes of Yannick Bolasie, Victor Moses and Abdul Rahman Baba.