Analysis

Where EVERY Premier League club needs to strengthen in the summer transfer window

Ashley Young

The key positions where all 20 Premier League clubs need a new recruit before 2018/19 kicks off, plus the latest player that each side has been linked with in the transfer market

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Arsenal: Centre-back

New Arsenal manager Unai Emery will no doubt have identified central defence as an area in need of improvement, particularly as Laurent Koscielny – who showed signs of decline in 2017/18 – is out for the rest of the year. Konstantinos Mavropanos (above) looked promising in his handful of appearances late last season, but a strong, commanding presence at the heart of defence is still desperately needed at the Emirates.

Linked with: Sokratis (Borussia Dortmund)

Bournemouth: Centre-back

Last season was another successful one for Bournemouth, who secured a fourth consecutive campaign of top-flight football. Eddie Howe deserves credit for remaining loyal to several of the players who helped the Cherries reach the Premier League, but the time has come to find an upgrade on 33-year-old defender Simon Francis. Nathan Aké (above) was superb last term, and a commanding, mobile centre-back partner would help him shine even more.

Linked with: Diogo Queiros (Porto)

Brighton: Striker

Brighton’s failure to sign a striker last summer was widely considered a mistake likely to cost them their Premier League status, but Glenn Murray stepped up admirably with 12 goals. Jurgen Locadia (above) was added to the ranks in January but started just three Premier League games, two of which he was deployed out wide. Another centre-forward is therefore a must before the start of 2018/19.

Linked with: Nick Powell (Wigan)

Burnley: Centre-back

This is an important summer for Burnley, who will need to significantly bolster their squad depth in all areas ahead of a European campaign, while also retaining the team spirit that played such a big part in their seventh-place finish last season. Another centre-half would be useful – the long-serving Kevin Long isn't the greatest first reserve behind Ben Mee and James Tarkowski (above).

Linked with: Craig Dawson (West Brom)

Cardiff: Striker

Neil Warnock will be desperate to disprove the notion that he isn’t cut out for life at the top table following Cardiff’s remarkable promotion in 2017/18. Multiple additions will be required if the Welsh outfit are to stay up, but the area most in need of strengthening is up front. Five teams found the net more often than the Bluebirds in the Championship, with Kenneth Zohore (above) their top-scoring striker with nine.

Linked with: Salomon Rondon (West Brom)

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