Arsenal: Central defender
Why the panic? Per Mertesacker is injured, Calum Chambers is not trusted and Gabriel Paulista is Gabriel Paulista. Still, it’s nice not to just be worried about strikers.
Possible options: Shkodran Mustafi, John Stones (well, why not?), Martin Caceres, Mamadou Sakho, Francis Coquelin.
Why the panic? They’ve spent in most other positions, but still have 36-year-old Artur Boruc and Adam Federici as their two goalkeeping options. It’s all a bit Championship.
Possible options: Tim Krul, Alex McCarthy, John Ruddy.
Why the panic? ‘Scott Arfield, Stephen Ward, Rouwen Hennings, Matt Taylor, David Jones, Sam Vokes and Michael Duff each played 20 or more league games in 2015/16. Are any good enough to play a meaningful role in a survival campaign? Sorry.’ We wrote that in May. One outfield player has come in since, from League One Charlton.
Possible options: Jeff Hendrick, Adnan Januzaj, Mathieu Flamini.
Chelsea: Central defender
Why the panic? Antonio Conte has previously played with a three-man central defence and a high line. Do Branislav Ivanovic, John Terry or Gary Cahill scream high-line central defenders? No.
Possible options: Kalidou Koulibaly, John Stones, Leonardo Bonucci.
Crystal Palace: Striker
Why the panic? Because Fraizer Campbell and Connor Wickham do not a good strikeforce make. Palace could be in big trouble if they don’t land a target soon.
Possible options: Christian Benteke, Diafra Sakho, Saido Berahino.
Everton: Central defender
Why the panic? If John Stones leaves, Everton have Phil Jagielka, Ramiro Funes Mori and Brendan Galloway as the only first-team central defenders. It just won’t do.
Possible options: Lamine Kone, Kalidou Koulibaly, Phil Jones.
Hull City: A new manager
Why the panic? Call me Captain Obvious if you like, but nothing will happen until Steve Bruce’s replacement is announced. The only player signed so far is Jonathan Edwards from Peterborough, and a triple jumper isn’t going to score 20 goals a season. Oh, and they’ve also got an injury crisis.
Possible options: Bob Bradley, Roberto Martinez, Steve McClaren.
Leicester City: Right-back
Why the panic? Leicester have three left-backs (Fuchs, Schlupp, Chilwell) and six central defenders (Morgan, Huth, Hernandez, Moore, Wasilewski, Benalouane) with Michael Keane also strongly linked, but only two right-backs (Simpson and De Laet). The latter of those two is about to leave the club.
Possible options: Sebastien Corchia, Youssouf Sabaly, Santiago Arias.
Why the panic? Alberto Moreno is clearly not fancied. Quite why Liverpool have targeted umpteen midfielders but no left-back is unclear.
Possible options: Jetro Willems, Ben Chilwell, Ricardo Rodriguez
Manchester City: Full-backs
Why the panic? All the talk of new centre-backs is lovely, but it’s in wider areas that City need to improve most. Aleksandar Kolarov and a 33-year-old Bacary Sagna? Nuh uh.
Possible options: Ricardo Rodriguez, Joshua Kimmich, Dani Carvajal.
Manchester United: Paul Pogba
Why the panic? With arrivals in all other areas of the pitch, Ed Woodward is enjoying a good summer. But it’s the Pogba deal on which he can really hang his hat, and Jose Mourinho can truly build his midfield.
Possible options: Paul Pogba, Mathias Pogba, Florentin Pogba.
Middlesbrough: Central midfielder
Why the panic? In truth, there isn’t much panic. But Adam Clayton and Grant Leadbitter played 41 and 43 league games respectively last season. Maarten de Roon has come in (£12m!!!), but another central midfielder to give some bite would not go amiss.
Possible options: Marouane Fellaini, Nabil Bentaleb, Ibrahim Amadou.
Southampton: A target man (although not necessarily big man)
Why the panic? Graziano Pelle left for good money, but that only leaves Shane Long, Jay Rodriguez and Charlie Austin. It just isn’t enough.
Possible options: Christian Benteke, Troy Deeney, Andy Delort.
Stoke City: A reliable goalscorer
Why the panic? Bojan, Marko Arnautovic, Mame Biram Diouf, Peter Crouch, Jonathan Walters, Joselu. It’s not quite a sea of meh (the Meh-diterranean Sea?), but Stoke scored fewer goals than relegated Newcastle last season. They haven’t bought a forward yet.
Possible options: Saido Berahino, Jose Angulo, Wilfried Bony.
Sunderland: Some players, please
Why the panic? Sunderland haven’t signed a player yet this summer. Their entire first-team squad consists of 19 players, and Adam Matthews, Liam Bridcutt, Charalampos Mavrias and Will Buckley are not wanted. Suddenly there are two gaps on the bench.
Possible options: Adnan Januzaj, Marouane Fellaini, Diafra Sakho.
Swansea City: Striker(s)
Why the panic? Plenty of clubs in this list need a striker, but none more than Swansea. When Bafetimbi Gomis leaves for Marseille, Swansea will have lost three strikers this summer. Only three of their players scored more than ‘own goal’ in the league last season, and one of those is Gomis.
Possible options: Peter Crouch, Leonardo Ulloa, Wilfried Bony.
Tottenham: Central defensive cover
Why the panic? No panic at all, but Mauricio Pochettino confirmed this week that Federico Fazio is free to leave the club, leaving only Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen and Kevin Wimmer as centre-backs, unless Eric Dier is going to leave central midfield. Spurs can’t rely on Alderweireld playing every minute of every game again.
Possible options: Martin Caceres, Shkodran Mustafi, Jannik Vestergaard
Editor’s note: These views are not shared by Mauricio Pochettino; he has Victor Wanyama.
Watford: Attacking midfielder
Why the panic? An already bloated squad has added a right-back (Brice Dja Djedje), wide forward (Isaac Success), young striker (Jerome Sinclair) and central defender (Christian Kabasele), but the midfield has plenty of uninspiring fat. Watford’s entire midfield last season scored four goals in 38 league games; two for Ben Watson and two for Almen Abdi, who is leaving.
Possible options: Victor Moses, Diego Rolan, Floyd Ayite
West Brom: Striker (should Saido Berahino leave)
Why the panic? The hope is that West Brom finally allow Berahino to leave, but that does leave West Brom with Rickie Lambert as the only competition for Salomon Rondon. That’s as one-sided a fight as putting up Posh Spice against Mariah Carey on a karaoke machine.
Possible options: Ross McCormack, Jonathan Kodjia, Mario Balotelli (make this happen, please)
West Ham: Left-back
Why the panic? It was all going so well for West Ham, who wanted a striker but weren’t panicking over anything. And then Aaron Cresswell got a bad injury, a player who missed 105 league minutes last season. Is Lewis Page now first-choice, or does Sam Byram play there?
Possible options: Marcos Rojo, Kieran Gibbs, George Friend.