In a busy opening to this summer’s Transfer Window, there were moves for no fewer than five Platinum One clients in the past week, with Ezri Konsa, Erhun Oztumer, Graham Burke, Rory Gaffney and Oscar Gobern all joining new clubs.
Ezri, an England Under 21 international, signed for Championship side Brentford on Monday, from Charlton Athletic for an undisclosed fee. Since making his debut against Cheltenham in August 2016, he has become a regular for Charlton, making 86 appearances in all competitions, and was also part of the England U20 World Cup winning side last year.
Speaking on Ezri’s signing, Brentford head coach Dean Smith, said: “We are really pleased to have completed the signing of Ezri. He was much sought after and we are very happy that he has chosen us to continue his development. It is a really exciting signing for us because of his age, potential and attitude.
“He has played a lot of games at League One level and his potential is unlimited. Having spoken to many people who have worked with him at both club and international level, and having watched him numerous times, the coaching staff are all looking forward to working with him over the next three years.”
Arguably one of the best free agents in the Football League, the ‘Turkish Messi’ – Erhun Oztumer – joined Bolton Wanderers having departed Walsall at the end of the season.
Oztumer, who was a Charlton youth player before spells at Sivasspor, Anadolu Uskudar and Peterborough, was named in League One’s team of the year for the second year in a row in May.
Bolton manager Phil Parkinson added: “We’re really pleased with the signing of Erhun. We’re very much looking forward to working with him over the next couple of years.”
After receiving his first call-up to the Republic of Ireland squad in May, and then getting his first start and first goal against USA, Graham Burke capped off a memorable month by putting pen-to-paper with Preston North End.
The Shamrock Rovers attacker has been in incredible form since joining the Hoops from Notts County last season, and having become the first League of Ireland player to make an international appearance in over ten years.
Burke said: “This is a new moment for me, a new chapter. Being at Shamrock Rovers was brilliant for me, I enjoyed every moment. Everything was brilliant for me in Dublin, going home meant I’m now more mature and better suited for it.
“I’m going back to England now and looking forward to the challenge. As far as I’m concerned, it is a case of getting my head down in training and trying to work my way into the team.”
There were also moves for Rory Gaffney, who joined Salford City from Bristol Rovers, and Oscar Gobern who signed for Eastleigh upon the expiration of his contract with Yeovil Town.