It was a deal that probably slipped by many a Brighton and Hove Albion fan, but in September last year, the Seagulls agreed on a deal to sign Swedish talent Viktor Gyokeres.
One reason why it might have slipped Brighton fans by is that he did not join the club immediately. The young forward stayed with Brommapojkarna until the end of the Swedish second division season. At the time of the deal going through he had already scored 10 goals for the club. He ended the campaign with 13 league goals, helping his side win promotion back to the Swedish top-flight.
In January he finally arrived at Brighton and, judging by his form for the under-23 side, the Seagulls have an absolute talent on their hands.
Gyokeres ended up playing nine times for Brighton’s youngsters, scoring an impressive seven goals. It included a run of six goals in five games and the question must now be asked, could he be ready for the first-team?
Of course, it would be a massive gamble of Chris Hughton’s to throw Gyokeres into the Premier League starting XI from August.
But the Swede definitely deserves a chance to impress during pre-season. If he can do that, then seeing him in action during one of the cup competitions next season should feel like a foreign concept.
He is certainly a name for Brighton fans to remember. Because, next season, he might be their surprise package.
Fulham’s sale of David Button to Brighton is a brilliant deal
The back-up goalkeeper was recently offloaded to Brighton.
On Monday, Fulham announced goalkeeper David Button was leaving Craven Cottage for an undisclosed fee to move to Brighton and Hove Albion.
The offloading of the club’s backup goalkeeper for any fee represents good business, as Button was very clearly second choice and, ultimately, supporters will be surprised that a Premier League club were willing to spend any money on the player.
Button joined the Whites in July 2016 and slotted in as first choice goalkeeper ahead of Marcus Bettinelli. Yet the Englishman lost his starting spot in embarrassing fashion after a horror show performance against Derby County the following April.
Button’s distribution, passing ability, and shot-stopping were abject that midweek night, allowing David Nugent to score some laughably easy goals en route to a harmful 4-2 loss.
After that match, Bettinelli took over and never looked back, leading Fulham on a sparkling end-of-season run to the play-offs that narrowly ended in heartbreak.
However, the following season Button again reclaimed the first choice role after Bettinelli was injured in pre-season. The ex-Brentford man started the season brightly, earning numerous plaudits and man-of-the-match votes during the early stages of the season.
But, his high-profile mistakes came back to haunt him, and after a poor showing against Brentford in December he was again benched for Bettinelli.
Fulham truly never looked back this time. Bettinelli’s arrival coincided with another sparkling run of form, this time one that took the Whites to third position and promotion through the play-offs.
It was clear Bettinelli was preferred to Button, and it made sense to see the elder goalkeeper depart this summer.
The sale of David Button to Premier League rivals Brighton is another intelligent piece of business by Tony Khan and Fulham, getting rid of benchwarmers and raising funds for further transfer targets.
Connor Goldson desperate for trophies at Rangers in near future
The new Rangers man is keen to bring the glory days back to Ibrox.
Fans were jubilant last week after securing the signing of impressive defender Connor Goldson from Brighton & Hove Albion last week, and the 25-year-old is bringing the mentality required to bring “revolution” to Ibrox in the near future.
Goldson has revealed his desire to win trophies with the Scottish giants, in quotes via the official club website, and sees the new manager Steven Gerrard as a major turning point in the club’s fortunes.
The Gers have failed to win silverware since their return to the Scottish top-flight in 2016, and have chopped and changed managers regularly, with Gerrard now the third manager to take the reins following Mark Warburton’s dismissal in March of last year.
But Goldson is undeterred by previous seasons and believes the club will re-establish themselves as contenders on all fronts in Scotland next term.
“It is more team targets that interest me. I want to win things and I have always been in teams that have won things,” the Englishman revealed.
“That is a reason for coming here. I’ve said to the manager – I don’t want to come here and just play good football and not win things. I want to come here and win trophies, and I think that’s what the fans are craving. They’re craving success and we need to build a team is able to give them that.”
The Wolverhampton-born defender claims the arrival of Gerrard was a major factor in his decision to join Rangers, and believes he will instil a winning mentality at Ibrox that players will buy into, while revealing he is also keen to become a leader on that front.
“He [Gerrard] wants to bring a winning mentality to the football club, and I am all for that. I have been lucky to have been in winning teams, being promoted a couple of times, and that is what I want to do here.”
Gerrard is coming into an extremely demanding job and will need to have the courage to well and truly shake things up at the club, because bitter rivals Celtic are showing no signs of faltering in recent times – having won the unprecedented ‘double-treble’ this term.
The Hoops have dominated everyone in the Scottish Premiership since Gerrard’s former boss Brendan Rodgers took over at Parkhead two-years back, and if Rangers can secure silverware in their first season under new management it would indicate a very successful year, and the club could build on it in the near future.
Rangers should play the waiting game to seal Connor Goldson deal
The calendar hasn’t even turned over from May to June and already Rangers’ transfer business is beginning to look like a saga as reports indicate that the Ibrox club could make a third improved bid for Brighton & Hove Albion defender Connor Goldson.
According to the Daily Record, a third bid will be made this week to add incentives and other add-ons to the £2 million fee which was rejected by the Seagulls on Friday.
It’s undeniable that Goldson must be one of the first names on Steven Gerrard’s shortlist of players to add to his squad before he arrives in Glasgow and Rangers are clearly intent on getting their man, but patience could prove fruitful in this case.
To date, Rangers are the only club to be seriously linked with the former Shrewsbury Town man and his future at the American Express Community Stadium is on the edge. Having this week signed defender Leon Balogun from Mainz as cover for Lewis Dunk and Shane Duffy, Goldson could expect even less game time than the eight appearances he got in 2017/18.
With the Gers pushing so hard, you would expect that they know that the player is keen on the move too and there are still three months remaining in the transfer window for which the club can wait and negotiate.
A statement signing is important to go alongside the appointment of Gerrard and keep him happy right from the off, but those in charge of negotiations should be cautious not to rush into a deal which costs them more than it needs to when that money could be spent elsewhere.