The Premier League's clubs are voting to make the transfer window close before the start of the season.

By 90Min
August 15, 2017

Jim White. Yellow everywhere. Harry Redknapp leaning out of his car window and talking about his t'rrific signings. Big purple personal relaxation aids being shoved in Sky Sports reporters' ears. Peter Odemwingie going to - well, just Peter Odemwingie in general. 

Transfer deadline day has become iconic for so many reasons, and proposed changes to move the end of the window to before the start of the season will change...basically none of them. There'll still be a deadline day, all of that will still happen. 

No, the changes are a horrible idea for entirely different reasons.

The idea - if you've missed it - is that the Premier League's transfer window should close before the start of the season so that teams don't go into their first handful of competitive matches with players who are distracted by thoughts of moves elsewhere; top flight footballers notably having brains which flit from distraction to distraction like butterflies in the spring until the closing of the window slams a big old tennis racquet down on them and nails them to their club until the posturing all starts again in January. 

To that extent, there's actually going to be a vote next month on whether to consider enacting changes to move the English window back to early-mid August. 

Wacky provocateur and transfer disaster in chief Jurgen Klopp hinted earlier this summer that he could be in favour of such a move, saying: "An earlier transfer deadline day would have helped us this year. In general, it makes sense that when the season starts that the planning is over."

Swansea's Paul Clement has been more straightforward, saying: "A better situation would be if the transfer window closed before the start of the season. I don't really understand why it goes to the end of August. I know there's talks about that changing in future. That's my opinion that it should do."

However - and it's a big, glowing 'however' with flashing lights and sirens and cheerleaders - Clement and Klopp are...if not outright wrong, then certainly misguided in this. 

The former's view looks to be influenced by events around his club right now, going into Saturday's season opener against Southampton minus Gylfi Sigurdsson, as his move to Everton rumbles on and without any replacement for him, as the club wait on the funds to come in from his eventual sale. 

It's an awkward position, and one which Everton boss Ronald Koeman and Saints manager Mauricio Pellegrino will have some sympathy as they balance their attempts to keep hold of Ross Barkley and Virgil van Dijk with a need to focus on the start of a busy season jostling for position around the top half of the table. 

Unless all of Europe's other major leagues adopt the same position at the same time though - and make no mistake, they won't - this is just the Premier League punching itself in the face to make a point to absolutely nobody. 

Players will still be able to leave the league so the issue of, as the gossip headlines go, 'wantaway stars' being unsettled until the start of September will continue. Coutinho can still be tempted away to Barcelona after the start of the season, except instead of being able to spend the cash on a replacement, Liverpool will be left standing around like a spare you know what at a wedding.

They won't be able to buy a replacement. That's the point there. That's clear, isn't it? Good. 

The fact that clubs can still have players tempted away after the artificially shortened window closes should end all conversations around the topic instantly. The purported benefits more or less evaporate, excluding only domestic transfers, and it actively weakens the position of Premier League clubs compared to their European rivals. 

This genuinely might be a worse idea than the definitely-never-going-to-happen '39th game'. If the clubs are sensible, it'll also be as unlikely. 

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