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Without wishing to let you behind the magic curtain at F365 Towers, we've noticed that not quite as many people have been reading our live Transfer Blog in the past couple of days. It's been a pretty busy place for the majority of the summer, and we can usually count on it for a pretty healthy slice of our user figures.
The most obvious explanation for this drop-off is that people are growing tired of the same sagas dominating the headlines, to which one might say 'Well make something else the headline then'. The problem there is that basically, bugger all is happening. The big clubs in the Premier League have spent a good portion of this summer obfuscating and dithering and making 'toe in the water' bids or just being slightly useless.
Arsenal added Ivan Gazidis's kids' pocket money onto a bid for a world-class striker. Chelsea are waiting for Wayne Rooney like a doting sweetheart waiting for their man to come home from war, waving their handkerchief as the train inches out of the station. One hopes Edward Woodward deals with the other 'urgent' business in his life a little more efficiently than the 'urgent' transfer business he flew home from Manchester United's tour of Australia to conduct.
Manchester City have done some business, of course. Indeed, according to figures in The Daily Mail (and indeed TransferMarkt.com), they have spent more money this summer than Paris St Germain - their four big buys have cost them £97.7million, while PSG have 'only' spent £97.6million on Edinson Cavani and Marquinhos. In the age of undisclosed fees it is of course wise to treat those figures with a certain amount of suspicion, but we can be fairly certain that City have spent what is technically known as a sh*tload of cash, and only Monaco have shelled out more this summer.
And yet, have they significantly improved their squad? Fernandinho is an upgrade on Gareth Barry, but one suspects not a £35million upgrade. You'd struggle to argue that Stevan Jovetic and Alvaro Negredo are significantly better - if at all - than Carlos Tevez and Mario Balotelli, particularly with the positional flexibility both of those players offered. Jesus Navas is the type of player they need, in that he's a fast genuine winger, but whether he's actually good enough to improve them remains to be seen.
Still, in comparison to their rest of last season's top four, they're leagues ahead. Manchester United have signed a teenage right-back when they already have Rafael, Fabio, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling, Chelsea have potentially spent 18 million of the most pointless pounds in football history on Andre Schurrle, another left-sided forward/winger/creative type to go with Juan Mata, Eden Hazard, Oscar, Victor Moses, Marko Marin and Kevin de Bruyne while I'm still half-certain that Arsene Wenger is just taking the piss with his summer of talking about spending on the biggest and best before signing a French teenager.
At this stage last summer United had recruited Shinji Kagawa and were about to sign Robin van Persie. Arsenal had bought Lukas Podolski, Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla in. Chelsea had spent north of £55million on Oscar and Eden Hazard. Only Manchester City had kept their powder dry, a reticence that would cost them the title, if you believe Roberto Mancini, anyway.
One could argue that, with the season about to start, none of the genuine title challengers have really improved their squads. A couple of them have improved their managers, but the squads - not so much. It is of course good news for Spurs, who most definitely have improved...if they keep Gareth Bale. And that's an 'if' the size of Gareth Bale's transfer fee.
There are nearly four weeks of the transfer window remaining, of course, so there is still time. However, with the season starting a week on Saturday, the best teams in the land are not much better than they were in May, and by this point even if they do sign anyone, it will be too late to do any significant pre-season preparation with the new boys.
While it clearly isn't as simple as this, one would have thought that, in this time of flux, with changing managers and new threats from the continent, the importance of an efficient summer window might have been recommended. As it is, the sluggishness will only add to the uncertainty in the Premier League. Good for us neutrals, because chaos = fun, but bad for those that would like to win things.
Nick Miller - follow him on Twitter