Well finally the transfer market is closed in Belgium just like in most countries in Europe. Still the danger exists from wealthy teams outside of Europe that they will try to make a player crazy to force an outgoing transfer. We have seen this before this year with the Pozuelo saga!
But the squad is complete and even if it wasn’t complete this will be the squad which will have to do it for us this season, or at least until the winter transfer window!
Maybe the best transfers this transfer season were transfers which didn’t take place. Both Berge and Samata where some of the cornerstones of the tittle of last season! With both players agreements where made that they would be granted a transfer to a bigger club or competition if the transfer was good for both parties. In this case the player and Genk. So probably but players did hear a botoom transfer fee which Genk would need to receive to allow them a transfer.
The danger that we would loose Berge already decreased when the Premier League transfer window closed, he is dreaming of the Premier League, so it would have been strange that he would have signed with another club. They were offers for him, even offers which were higher than the bottom Genk did want to have, but those teams would be fighting relegation and that is something Berge did not want! He was aiming higher! Of course also the great Champions League draw did help him with his decision. 2 good games against Liverpool and he will be probably playing in the Premier League after the winter or next season!
Next up was Samata. Also here lots of negotiations where going on with different clubs. But none of them were satisfying enough for Genk or Samata. So, we are really happy that he will stay with us! During the last game against Club Brugge he should how much value he has for our squad!
Last minute transfers
Well there were no last minute incoming transfers which is a good case. I still do find the transfers sealed on the last day of the transfer window strange transfers. But some could be great signings.
We only had outgoing transfers and loans. Which is good in our case. We do give those guys a change on playing the game they love! Also the squad with be too big, which always can give some troubles.
- Bartacinni is loaned out to Deinze
- Gano is loaned out to Antwerp with a purchase option
- Khammas is loaned to Lommel
- Bensen is sold to Antwerp. (He had multiple chances but just didn’t have what was needed to secure a spot in the squad)
- Jackers is loaned to Waasland-Beveren with a purchase option. Glad that he did find a team where he probably can be the first in the picking order!
Well Genk has 2 different kind of transfer policies. They like to buy very high potential youngsters on one side, but also like to purchase player which can be a direct quality improvement for the starting eleven. And this policy is paying off. The estimated profit during this transfer season was €13 mil in the plus. And for once they did spend a lot!
Well the promising youngsters will get time to adept to the playing style of Genk and will probably be prepared for next season. While some did cost a lot of money, Genk is normally very patient with these players! Also there are not afraid to loan them out, to see how they react on playing more or less a full season. Some of them will get into a loan streak which often do result in a farewell but others will get stronger by this and will improve, giving them a chance to secure a spot in the squad! The best example of a farewell this season in Benson, they best example a securing a spot in Coucke (goalkeeper).
Odey was bought as back-up for Samata. He will need to be prepared for the moment Samata will decide that his future is outside Genk.
Nygren could be a great signing, but also he will get time to mature. He will get some playing minutes and will need to learn the tricks from the more experienced midfielders. I do hope that they do let him play on the left winger position!
Hagi is also a transfer which fits in the main transfer policy of Genk. Buying them young, make them better, enjoy what they do give extra to the team and then grant them a transfer to a bigger team!
Last but not least we do have Cuesta. I did see him already playing this season and he will be an excellent back-up for Dewaest or Lucimi when suspended or injured. He will be ready to step up, when needed no doubt about it!
The direct quality improvements.
The first signing of the season was Bongonda, which is bought to replace Trossard (sold to Brighton). Due to an injury he hasn’t played an official game yet, but he will be needed!
Hrosovsky bought to replace Malinovski, who did force a transfer to Atalanta. Part of the deal was that he would only arrive in Genk after Bazel did play all their European qualification games. He showed last week against Club, that the triangle Berge, Heynen and Hrosovsky could become as gold. For the Belgian Jupiler Pro League it should be able to easily dominate against most teams. Which is also important is that he already has Champions League experience!
Onuachu! Still trying to pronounce the name who he should be. Will take some time. He is bought because he has a profile which we were missing at the moment. I really would like to see how he will play together with Samata. Samata is always running and finding the gaps in the defense. Onuachu could stay center and be a real target man!
Jupiler Pro League
Like I wrote in the title the season really starts now!
Yes we looked weakened compared to last season but I don’t think the quality has decreased by a lot. Maybe we do have a better team than last year but some players do lack the needed experience. But this experience will grow week by week! The problem Genk had the season after their first 3 titles is that too many players were sold and the bought players where just not up to par!
But I do feel that this season after a title will be different. The second half against Club Brugge showed us that we are ready to defend our title in style! I am not claiming that we will prolong it, because I do think that Brugge is the favorite!
Well I do think that we can consider it a great drawing. With Liverpool we do have the defending Champion in our group. Napoli is great with Mertens and for sure Koulibaly which was sold several years ago to Napoli. Always great to have a player coming back! And Salzburg does give a small chance on not ending the campaign with 0 points!
Probably will we have no chance at all against Liverpool and Napoli during the away game, but they better be warned when visiting us! The team will play with passion and some to be seen by the teams in the Premier League. I am really happy that those two teams are scheduled to come to us within the first 3 games. This means that will probably play with their strongest team possible.
Also we may not forget Champions League hero Origi, which is a man from the region.
The Champions league tickets are in the pocket and @simplylars and myself are looking forward to it! The only thing I need to assure is that @simplylars may not wear his Napoli training suit to the Champions League game against us! 😊