There's something still very Manchester City in the way their new owners are flexing their financial muscle. First there's the enormous bid for Berbatov, while it's well known that Mark Hughes is playing golf, which gets agreed by Spurs only for Fergie to comprehensively gazump them right at Manchester airport arrivals. Then the owner brags about bids for Villa and Gomez, only for Valencia and Stuttgart to deny all knowledge of receiving any communication from the club. In desperation they find another transfer featuring an unsettled player to hijack, and so Robinho, a player who took the best part of a season to settle into the style of La Liga, becomes the subject of the biggest transfer Britain has ever seen. His first game for City will be at home. To Chelsea.
Everton crept round the back to buy one Marouane Fellaini, capped ten times by Belgium, for what sounds like an inflated £15m. Louis Saha and Carlo Nash are the club's not exactly pulse racing other signings. Hull have snatched Rangers' Daniel Cousin away from Fulham's reach, Spurs snapped up Xisco and Liverpool have sealed Albert Riera. Steve Finnan crept out to Espanyol (not as literally as Tyrone Mears crept out), Jon Parkin went from Stoke to Preston, onetime Palace wonderkid Tom Soares is at Stoke, Lloyd Owusu has gone from Yeovil to Cheltenham on a free, Blackburn's Paul Gallagher is on loan at Plymouth, and Antoine Sibierski has gone temporarily to Norwich while Ipswich welcome in Jon Stead.
And still the tabloids continue with the rumours - Everton for Vagner Love, West Ham Steven Appiah, Plymouth Emile Mpenza (!)