The Premier League has announced changes to the closure of its transfer window, which will shut at 17:00 on the Thursday before the 2018-19 season.
In recent years, deadline day has fallen on either the final day of August or the first day of September, by which point the campaign is two or three weeks old.
In a media conference on Thursday, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger reiterated his stance that the window should close before the games get under way, in order to avoid key players becoming unsettled.
And in a statement released by the Premier League later on Thursday, it was announced the clubs had voted in favour of the changes.
Only clubs in England's top flight are subject to the alteration and they will still be able to sell any players once the new deadline has passed.
Premier League Clubs have today agreed to a transfer deadline rule amendment… pic.twitter.com/IEvTbzzNtc
— Premier League (@PLSpokesman) September 7, 2017
"Premier League clubs have today agreed to a rule amendment that will see the summer transfer window in any year end at 17:00 on the Thursday before the start of the season," a Premier League statement read.
"This is for Premier League clubs only and has no bearing on other leagues and competitions.
"The first transfer window in which this applies will be the summer transfer window in 2018 (ahead of the 2018-19 season) and it will close on 17:00 on Thursday 9 August 2018.
"This new rule applies only to the acquisition of players. Clubs will still have the ability to sell players to other leagues in which the transfer window is open (as they can now to leagues that have different transfer window dates, e.g. MLS and CSL).
"Clubs have discussed this topic at length at previous shareholders' meetings (February 2017 and June 2017) prior to today's vote."
The changes could bring an end to transfer sagas such as the one which surrounded Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez towards the end of the most recent window.
The Chilean was the subject of heavy interest from Manchester City, which seemingly prompted the ire of Wenger.
However, the alterations could leave Premier League clubs vulnerable to having their stars poached by other sides around Europe, with Barcelona's recent unsuccessful pursuit of Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho a cautionary tale for those hoping to keep hold of their top players.
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