The five biggest transfers in the Championship so far this summer

Leicester City

Peterborough, Leicester City, Millwall, Crystal Palace and Leeds United have made the biggest deals so far.

We've all heard about the big deals taking place in the Premier League, Chelsea paying £32 million for Eden Hazard, Manchester United paying up to £17 million for Shinji Kagawa, but in the division below the figures are far more modest.

The transfer window officially opens on July 1, and that is when most of the business will be done, but deals have already been sealed. Here are the five biggest to date.

Tyrone Barnett - Crawley to Peterborough £1.2 million

Barnett joined Posh on loan in February, and impressed straight away. Manager Darren Ferguson described his goalscoring debut against Doncaster as good as he has ever seen. He had already scored 14 goals for Crawley when he was signed with the option to buy, and his instant success in the Championship made sure Ferguson was keen to secure the deal, making it permanent at the end of May. He scored four goals in total for Peterborough last season and at 26 is clearly ready to take the next step in his career. Former boss Steve Evans had described him as the best striker outside of the Championship. Barnett was released by West Brom as a youngster but got his career back on track with in non-league and then with Macclesfield and will hope to help Peterborough build on their 18th placed finish this season and climb up the table next season. 

Jamie Vardy - Fleetwood Town to Leicester City £1.1 million

Leicester City have dipped into non-league football to sign up a striker who could prove to be the next big thing. Vardy scored a superb 34 goals to help Fleetwood get promoted from the Conference last season and is keen to show what he can do at a higher level. He scored in the FA Cup against Blackpool last season, performances which highlighted his progress, and Leicester had originally tried to sign him during the January transfer window. The 25-year-old will hope to follow players including DJ Campbell and Jimmy Bullard in making the step up from non-league in recent years and the price tag shows just how highly Leicester and Fleetwood both valued him. He was released by Sheffield Wednesday as a teenager and will enjoy the challenge of playing against them next season. 

Scott Malone - Bournemouth to Millwall £750,000

Millwall paid three quarters of a million pounds to pluck the Cherries midfielder from the League One club in late May. Malone is only 21 and had only been a permanent Bournemouth player since last December when he signed from Wolves for £150,000 and now he will return to Molineux as a visiting player with Millwall this coming season. Malone is a left-midfielder, but can also play at left-back. The deal also saw striker Josh McQuoid go the other way from Millwall to Bournemouth, his former club. In his short career Malone has enjoyed loan spells at Southend, Burton Albion and Hungarian side Ujpest where he helped them qualify for the Europa League. 

Jason Pearce - Portsmouth to Leeds United £550,000

Cash-strapped Portsmouth have found themselves relegated to League One, and losing their most coveted players for bargain prices. Captain and player of the year Jason Pearce is one of these, snapped up for just over half a million pounds by Leeds United, who saw their own captain Jonny Howson depart for Norwich City in January. Manager Neil Warnock has said he is delighted with the signing and as a long-time admirer almost signed him for QPR last summer. 24-year-old centre-back Pearce is another ex-Bournemouth player, also taking in short loan spells as a youngster with non-league clubs Woking and Bognor Regis. In total he made 44 appearances for Pompey last season scoring twice. 

Joel Ward - Portsmouth to Crystal Palace £500,000

Joel Ward is another player to leave stricken Portsmouth, and at 22 has a bright future ahead of him. He played in defence and in midfield last season and signed a four-year-deal with Palace at the end of last month. Leeds and Burnley were both interested in his services. Ward made more than 100 appearances for Pompey and is highly rated. Predominantly a right-back, he could end up replacing Palace's Nathaniel Clyne who will announce his future in early July and has been linked with Manchester United. The chance of regular first team football was surely a tempting reason for Ward to choose the Eagles.

Which of these five will prove to be the best signing?

image: © lefty1007

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