Top EPL transfers this summer

Eden Hazard, Shinji Kagawa among top players who moved

Originally Published: August 31, 2012
By Albert Larcada | ESPN Insider
Chelsea WinOtto Greule Jr/Getty ImagesEden Hazard has had a strong start to the EPL season for Chelsea.

It might not seem like Man City dominated the Premier League last season with its late-game heroics on the final match day to capture the title, but looking closely at the numbers, you see its challengers had a lot of catching up to do this offseason. Man City finished 39 goals better than the third-best team in the league, the largest gap in the Premier League era. City also created at least one more scoring chance per game than any other club, while allowing the second-fewest chances. It's clear England's top teams had some work to do during the transfer window to close this gap.

And work they did.

City's top three competitors for the title -- Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal -- each acquired a rising star who likely will be the team's top playmaker this season. The uptick in goal-scoring opportunities that Shinji Kagawa, Eden Hazard and Santi Cazorla will generate for their respective squads makes them the top transfers of the summer.

Let's take a look at how they will affect their new clubs:

Shinji Kagawa (Manchester United via Borussia Dortmund)

Albert Larcada is an Analytics Specialist in ESPN's Stats & Information group. Among other analytics projects, he maintains, advances and writes about ESPN's Soccer Power Index (SPI) algorithm.