AFC WimbledonCharlton AthleticCrystal PalaceMillwallSport

South London Press verdicts on the transfer window business for Palace, Millwall, Charlton and AFC Wimbledon


Marc Guehi (Chelsea, £21m), Joachim Andersen (Lyon, £15.7m), Odsonne Edouard (Celtic, £15m), Michael Olise (Reading, £8m), Will Hughes (Watford, £10m), Remi Matthews (Sunderland, free), Conor Gallagher (Chelsea, loan)

Outs (free agents unless specified otherwise):
Andros Townsend (Everton), Patrick van Aanholt (Galatasaray), Mamadou Sakho (Montpellier), Gary Cahill (Bournemouth), Wayne Hennessey (Burnley), James McCarthy (Celtic), Jacob Monte (WaasL-Beveren, loan), Scott Dann (Reading), Stephen Henderson, Connor Wickham, Sam Woods

Most exciting transfer of the window:
Michael Olise. The winner of last season’s EFL Young Player of the Year award will bring much-needed creativity to ease the pressure on Wilfried Zaha. An exciting signing with an abundance of potential.

South London Press verdict:
It was always going to be a summer crammed with incomings due to Palace allowing 10 senior first-team players to depart at the end of the season to rebuild Patrick Vieira’s squad. Re-signing Christian Benteke, Joel Ward, and Nathaniel Clyne made sense, especially with Nathan Ferguson’s long-term injury.
The centre-back duo of Joachim Andersen and Marc Guehi have already shown that they were astute purchases.
Conor Gallagher’s arrival on a season-long loan from Chelsea looks to be a shrewd signing, too, with the combative midfielder adding a goal threat from the centre of the pitch.
The additions of Olise, Will Hughes and Odsonne Edouard will bring goals, creativity and quality.
Keeping hold of Wilfried Zaha for another season can only aid Vieira this campaign.
The only reason why Palace’s recruitment hasn’t received full
marks is that Vieira himself admitted that the Eagles were “short” on options, with many supporters hoping for an addition at right-wing and cover at left-back before the window slammed shut. But there is now a more straightforward pathway to the first team for the likes of Jesurun Rak-Sakyi and Tayo Adaramola. (Edmund Brack)

A fan’s view:
We Palace fans went into this transfer window with trepidation — the needs of the club were obvious, but past disappointments were still on our minds.
Palace delivered a very good transfer window, however, making the kind of recruits that in many cases not only replaced those who were allowed to leave but improved upon them too.
In the new centre-back pairing of Guehi and Andersen, Palace have a strong and talented partnership that the club can build upon.
With Gallagher, Hughes and Olise, the club have the potential for a more dynamic midfield. Gallagher showed the kind of quality Palace were hoping to get with his two goals against West Ham.
While the signing of Odsonne Edouard had the appearance of a last-minute panic buy, his record at Celtic suggests there is ample talent for him to have an impact in the Premier League.
If there is some concern, the lack of cover at left-back and a lack of attacking depth on the flanks is somewhat problematic, but there is at least some flexibility in the side until the next transfer window, when more additions can be made. (Rob Sutherland, Five Year Plan)

Transfer window rating: 9/10




Scott Malone (Derby, free), George Long (Hull, free), George Saville (Middlesbrough, undisclosed), Daniel Ballard (Arsenal, loan), Benik Afobe (Stoke City, loan), Sheyi Ojo (Cardiff City, loan)

Outs (free agents unless specified otherwise):
Shaun Williams (Portsmouth), Shane Ferguson (Rotherham), Mahlon Romeo (Portsmouth, loan), James Brown (St Johnstone),Hayden Muller (St Johnstone, loan), Tyler Burey (Hartlepool, loan), Alex Mitchell (Leyton Orient, loan), Isaac Olaofe (Sutton United, loan), Frank Fielding

Most exciting transfer of the window:
Sheyi Ojo. Millwall is the former England U21 international’s seventh loan club. Scored five goals and seven assists for Cardiff City last season and had Europa League action for Rangers in the campaign before.

Cardiff City’s Sheyi Ojo (left) and Norwich City’s Emi Buendia battle for the ball during the Sky Bet Championship match at the Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff.

South London Press verdict:
Solid, sensible…if a bit unspectacular.
Turning Scott Malone’s stay back into a permanent one made total sense while George Saville, if he can repeat the form that led to Middlesbrough signing him, looks a shrewd transfer  as well. Benik Afobe has already scored twice and is now one goal behind the entire combined total for Kenneth Zohore and Troy Parrott, last season’s striker loan signings.
Millwall had hoped to bring in Luke Freeman but Sheffield United blocked an exit for the creative midfielder, whose roots are in Dartford.
The Lions would have done more business if they had managed to free up space on their wagebill. Jon Dadi Bodvarsson turned down approaches from League One and abroad. There was interest from the division below in Ben Thompson, out of contract at the start of July, but that didn’t translate into a formal bid.
The question remains, as it has done over the past couple of campaigns, whether Millwall have the offensive firepower to bridge that gap to the club’s chasing the Championship play-offs.
And that is why it was so imperative they kept hold of Jed Wallace, who has scored double figures in the past two seasons. (Richard Cawley)

A fan’s view:
This transfer window was notable as much for who didn’t leave Zampa Road, as those who did.
Millwall fans will look to Ojo to help unpick the kinds of difficult defences that have troubled us since …well, 1885. No pressure then Sheyi.
Leaving The Den for development reasons are newly-contracted defender Alex Mitchell, who joins Kenny Jackett’s Leyton Orient. Also striker Isaac Olaofe, who rejoins Sutton United.
The most expected deal of the lot saw Romeo take the A3 down to Portsmouth for the remainder of the season. A sad end to his career at Zampa Road. At his best, Mahlon was a major contributor to some of our best seasons.
Notable for who didn’t exit The Den, was the Lions’ crown jewel Jed Wallace. Without his artistry, we’d look very thin indeed.
Also staying is Thompson, who was widely expected to be another catching the train from Waterloo to Fratton Park, as well as Bodvarsson.
Despite the club allowing it to be known that they would consider offers for the Icelandic international, he opted to stay in SE16.
Football can be a cruel mistress can’t it? (Nick Hart, Achtung! Millwall Podcast)

Transfer window rating: 7/10




Craig MacGillivray (Portsmouth, free), George Dobson (Sunderland, free), Corey Blackett-Taylor (Tranmere, free), Akin Famewo (Norwich, loan), Jayden Stockley (Preston, undisclosed), Sean Clare (Oxford, undisclosed), Charlie Kirk (Crewe, £500k), Elliot Lee (Luton Town, loan), Harry Arter (Forest, loan), Samuel Lavelle (Morecambe, undisclosed), Jonathan Leko (Birmingham, loan)

Outs (free agents unless specified otherwise):
Marcus Maddison (Spalding United), Erhun Oztumer (Karagumruk), Darren Pratley (Leyton Orient), Deji Oshilaja (Burton), Chuks Aneke (Birmingham), Ben Amos (Wigan), Andrew Shinnie (Livingston), Ashley Maynard-Brewer (Ross County, loan), Wassim Aouachria (Aldershot, loan)

Most exciting transfer of the window:
If we’re talking potential, then it’s Charlie Kirk. Charlton met the left winger’s £500,000 release clause at Crewe, making the 23-year-old their most expensive outlay of the window. Needs time to settle, but was a star man for the Alex.

South London Press verdict: The transfer window trundled along frustratingly slowly but ended pretty excitingly with three deadline day captures – the enigmatic and unpredictable but certainly exciting Jonathan Leko returning on loan again topping things off very nicely.
There are still some areas that look short. Jayden Stockley’s permanent move from Preston North End was a shrewd piece of business, and he’s been in the goals already, but there will be concerns that the Addicks are short up top if he is missing for any length of time. Chris Gunter has been asked to fill in out of position at left-back which is less than ideal as well so I wouldn’t be surprised if Nigel Adkins goes fishing in the pool of free agents to snare a back-up full-back. But the Addicks feel pretty well-stocked elsewhere. The type of player that Charlton have brought in on the whole – young and already proven to an extent at lower league level such as Charlie Kirk and Sam Lavelle – should lay the groundwork for steady growth over the next few years. Some more experienced heads in on loan as well, such as Harry Arter and Elliot Lee, will hopefully mean that the season can really start in earnest now. (Louis Mendez)

A fan’s view:
There are two benchmarks for summer transfer windows at Charlton in League One – and this one felt more like boss Lee Bowyer’s 2018-19 play-off winning set-up than Chris Powell’s carefully crafted early assembly of a title-winning team for 2011-12.
Jayden Stockley’s early return was absolutely pivotal, but the Addicks failed to follow that up to the extent that poor early results meant some had started to fear the team might be relegated. It’s unlikely that concerns were limited to the stands.
Thankfully, there is a lot more quality and experience at The Valley now, and a renewed sense of excitement. There has also been a shift away from the loan signing of Premier League potential, which does mean more chance temporary stays can be extended.
No fewer than five of the 11 signings have been at Charlton before, while Elliot Lee also has a strong connection, which brings more than sentimentality. It does rather look as if management grabbed what they could off the shelves at the last minute, though, leaving Nigel Adkins overmanned in some areas and still light in others. We cannot know if this squad will gel, but at least it now promises to be interesting finding out. (Rick Everitt, Voice of The Valley fanzine)

Transfer window rating: 7/10




Darius Charles (Wycombe, free), George Marsh (Tottenham, free), Luke McCormick (Chelsea, free), Zaki Oualah (Leatherhead, free), Aaron Cosgrave (Lewes, free), Aaron Pressley (Brentford, loan), Henry Lawrence (Chelsea, loan), Dapo Mebude (Watford, loan)

Outs (free agents unless specified otherwise):
Joe Pigott (Ipswich), Shayon Harrison (Morecambe), Shane McLoughlin (Morecambe), Tyrell Thomas (Crewe), Matthew Cox (Brentford), Zach Robinson (Hemel Hempstead, loan), Aaron Cosgrave (Dover, loan), Corie Andrews (Aldershot, loan), Luke O’Neill, Callum Reilly (Leyton Orient)

Most exciting transfer of the window:
Luke McCormick. The former Chelsea man stood head and shoulders above the rest for Bristol Rovers at this level last term and already tops the charts for the Dons with one goal and two assists in his opening six games.


AFC Wimbledon v Scunthorpe United, 2021/22 Pre-Season friendly, Plough Lane, 31 August 2021

South London Press verdict:
AFC Wimbledon were given the thankless task of replacing 20-goal hitman Joe Pigott this summer after the prolific striker departed for League One rivals Ipswich Town.
The Dons have tried to plug that gap with the loan signings of Dapo Mebude and Aaron Pressley. Whilst there are big boots for the young pair to fill, the early signs are promising, with both of them off the mark already in the league.
Head coach Mark Robinson had wanted a permanent deal for George Dobson but the midfielder opted for Charlton following his Sunderland release. That saw them snap up
former Tottenham youngster George Marsh, while McCormick further bolsters the midfield ranks.
The Dons also wrapped up another promising loan deal with the capture of versatile full-back Henry Lawrence from London neighbours Chelsea.
Darius Charles returned for a second spell with Wimbledon to offset the departure of the club’s former Player Of The Year Terell Thomas, who departed for Crewe Alexandra at the end of his contract. (Daniel Marsh)

A fan’s view: No deadline day rush, nor making signings just for show. Robinson’s young squad – average age 22 – may lack overall experience but still has older heads in Alex Woodyard, Ollie Palmer and Charles, the latter performing something of a dressing room mentor role primarily.
Robinson tantalisingly hinted at a possible late addition before the window closed but was wisely mindful of not wanting to upset the cohesion he’d already built on the back of one – unlucky – defeat in his first five league games. Social media linked the Dons with QPR striker Charlie Kelman – perhaps the ‘fox-in-the-box’ type of forward not obviously present at Plough Lane – and Ipswich winger Armando Dobra, but the pair ended up at Gillingham and Colchester respectively. Both youngsters perhaps would not have walked straight into Robinson’s often flexible starting 11 anyway. So Dons fans, in the words of Corporal Jones from Dad’s Army: “Don’t panic!” (Ray Armfield)

Transfer window rating: 7/10

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