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After Swansea’s hard fought draw against a lucky Man United the Cherries are all but guaranteed another season in the Premier League. Goal difference means that we are almost safe, while a single point against Stoke, Burnley or Leicester would make us mathematically safe.
This means it is time for Eddie Howe to start laying out his plans for next season. So where does he start? Relegated teams will have players who want to leave and ready to make a move. Defence is often been deemed as our weak point and Simon Francis and Charlie Daniels, while not ancient will be 33 and 31 next season. Serious competition for places in defence is needed. Elsewhere we are well-blessed but there is always a star out there to make the team even better. So here’s six players who we reckon we could afford and would make the team even stronger.
01. JERMAINE DEFOE – Sunderland – £5.5m
The striker scored nearly as many goals as Josh King in a poor team. Imagine what he could do in a team that will proivde him with a host of chances every game. He has a killer instinct and would be a great addition and add serious competition for places. He may only have one season left in him, but if he can replicate his early season form, he will prove to be a bargain.
02. JORDAN PICKFORD – Sunderland – £4.25m
Artur Boruc has extended his contract and while he has been brilliant in patches this season, he is still too inconsistent for our liking. He needs some serious competition for this place and our current backup does not provide that. Begovic might be on his way to Dean Court, but Pickford would be just as good if not bettter in our opinion. Would he come to Dean Court and be a number two? Lets hope so, and it not be for long.
03. BEN GIBSON – Middlesbrough – £5.1m
Recently called up to the England squad ahead of Steve Cook, so he must be good. His recent performance against Bournemouth was pretty dire, but he is a player with plenty of potential and he wants to leave. He might not be an immediate first choice but could provide good backup.
04. ALFIE MAWSON – Swansea – £3m
A young English central defender with a left foot who has shown he can compete in the Premier League. He might still be a bit raw, but he has plenty of potential and has Premier League experience. He can also weigh in with the odd goal or two.
05. GYLFI SIGURDSSON – Swansea – £17m
The man is pure class and knows where the goal is especially from set pieces. He is only 27 and coming into his prime. We might have to break the bank for him but he will prove to be worth every penny.
06. HARRY MAGUIRE – Hull – £2.1m
If Hull do get relegated Eddie Howe needs to act quickly and show his interest in this towering defender. He is 6ft 2in is built like a brick sh*thouse and knows how to defend. His recent performances for Hull City have shown how good the 24 year-old is. He would be a great alternative to Simon Francis. Think he might be more than his valuation but would still be worth every penny.
NOTE: All valuations taken from http://www.transfermarkt.co.uk