We at last now have the very final confirmation of when the Premier League Summer Transfer Window opens.
For a long time we knew that it would end on Thursday 9 August at 5pm but for whatever date it would open was left in the dark.
On Monday, Sky Sports said (see below) that their information was that the window would open on Thursday (17 May) and they expected the Premier League to confirm this fact by Wednesday night.
However, Sky Sports have now given an update on Tuesday night and say that the Premier League have now confirmed that 17 May is indeed the opening date .
SKY SPORTS – Tuesday 15 May:
‘The Premier League has confirmed the transfer window will open at midnight on May 17.
It will then close at 5pm on August 9 – instead of August 31, which it has been in previous years.’
So clubs can sign players from May 17?
‘Yes. In fact, deals can be agreed before May 17, however, the paperwork cannot be processed until the window has officially opened.
That means domestic transfers can be completed from midnight on May 17, but transfers from abroad can only be finalised once the FIFA Transfer Matching System (TMS) opens at midnight on June 8.’
What about EFL clubs?
‘The EFL transfer window is already open.
It opened on Monday, May 7 for domestic transfers. Clubs involved in play-offs can sign players now – but cannot play them until their season is over.
The window closes at the same time as the Premier League, on August 9 at 5pm – five days after the new EFL season begins.’
What about loans?
‘EFL clubs will still be able to sign players on loan until August 31. They can also sign free agents up until the same date.’
The Mag – Monday 14 May 2018:
It was over eight months ago that the Premier League voted to make changes to the Summer Transfer Window.
In early September 2017, the headline news was that from now on the window would close before the season kicked off.
The thinking being that this would curb the disruption and uncertainty in the past, caused by players being targeted after the games had started and clubs already had their squads finalised, only to then see interest in their key players.
Very quickly it became known that the next Summer Transfer Window would end on Thursday 9 August at 5pm, with the matches set to start that following weekend.
However, rather bizarrely, when the Summer Transfer Window would actually begin, has been shrouded in secrecy, with no official confirmation.
Indeed, with the 2017/18 season now over, the Official Premier League site is still saying:
‘The summer transfer window opens soon after the Premier League season finishes and, from 2018/19, will close at 17:00 BST on the final Thursday before the start of the season.
‘The dates may slightly vary from year to year.’
On Monday night Sky Sports have given us an update, they say:
‘The Premier League will this week confirm that the summer transfer window will open on the earlier date of Thursday May 17 to fall into line with FIFA rules.
The regulations of the world’s governing body state that every league must have at least one transfer window in a calendar year that lasts for 12 weeks.
To preserve the overall time frame when deals can be done, FIFA now requires the Premier League to bring forward the opening date of the summer window, which will be effective immediately.
They are expected to formally announce the change by Wednesday evening with member clubs able to buy and sell players from Thursday.
The EFL is thought to be planning a similar statement.’
As well as many media organisations going with that date of 17 May 2018, many others were claiming it would actually begin on 9 June 2018.
All very strange as to why the start date has been given such secret treatment.