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Welcome Back to the EPL: Richards and McClean

An ex bright young thing returns, so does an ex phantom point hero and a few other smaller headline transfer issues updated.

The big guy is back
The big guy is back
Richard Sellers/Getty Images

A number of moves involving current or former EPL player have happened over the last week or so.  Let's take a look.

James McClean to WBA

West Bromwich Albion picked up the 26 year old from Wigan Athletic for an ultra-cheap 1.5m.  The winger largely got good reports for his performances last season despite Wigan's woes.

McClean was always a very good fantasy player for me.  Very busy and very direct he often racked up the phantom points and due to his pace the odd goal.  Should he settle in the WBA starting 11 he's a decent option if priced right.

Youssouf Mulumbu to Norwich City.

The Canaries picked up an experienced ball winner on a free transfer.

Never a fantasy thought but a solid reliable midfield option for Norwich City in a season where they will have to dig in to survive.

Andreas Weimann to Derby County

Weimann was a very occasional fantasy pick but I thought always offered Villa an option from the bench in games.

With the arrival of Scott Sinclair and emergence of Jack Grealish in the forward support roles his chances would have been limited.  A slight surprise transfer for me.  For Derby this is very good business. I'd imagine Weimann becomes a very effective player in the Championship.

Micah Richards to Villa

A few years ago Richards was the bright young thing in the England side.  Coming through the Manchester City system his impressive build and pace suggested a player who could be molded into a certain starter for club and country for years to come.

Micah however, like many young English talents has failed to achieve his potential.  After 179 games for City he was loaned to Fiorentina where he made just 10 appearances.  Released from City he has joined Aston Villa on a 4 year deal.

Richards at 27 still has time to turn his career around and I can Imagine Tim Sherwood getting more out of him than some managers have.  You know how I feel about the currently England defence so any sign of the young talent coming back would be a good thing internationally.  For Villa it will be interesting to see where his role is.  Perhaps they go to 3 center backs, perhaps he takes a role as one of 2 CB or even cover at right back.

Overall I get the risk v reward for Villa on this one.

Chris Baird to Derby

Again quality signing for Derby.  For me Baird often got me those surprise 20pt games so I have a soft spot for him as a fantasy filler.

Robert Huth to Leicester City

After a very successful spell on loan Huth will be signing permanently.  Stoke have agreed a reported £3m fee.  Bargain.

Any thoughts on the smaller names of the transfer window so far?