Transfer window reflections
The January football transfer window is over unfortunately and we hope you enjoyed our coverage in the transfer centre. Now is our time to digest and evaluate, and share our opinionated views on who we feel is the best transfer moves of January, the worst and the 'nearly' transfers that just didn't quite happen in the transfer window where transfer fees hit an all time record.
The Premiership was rife with transfer activity in January as Tottenham forked out their perennial Â£20 million on talent and Chelsea Â£27 million. All of this contributed to the enormous Â£150 million total spend attributed to this transfer window.
Arsene Wenger played it by ear though this window - as always - and has not added to his squad. But many will feel that maybe Arsenal could have done with one more experienced player to help out for the rest of the season. This speaks volumes as Wenger announced prior to the game with Man City - the day after the transfer window closed - that he only had 14 players.
The Big Movers
Afonso Alves has to be one of the better moves of the transfer window. Middlesbrough are desperate for attacking strength and Alves comes with a proven goalscoring record. Fair enough; it may only be the Eredivisie, but so many players have moved from the smaller European leagues into the Premiership and have become a success story.
Nicolas Anelka had to be the best signing of all of the transfer window. At a whopping price however for Chelsea, but the move was always destined to happen as the Frenchman was continuously hinting at a move away from Bolton. He looks a snip for Avram Grant as Chelsea have now had a 'second coming' and look to be ready to mount another Premiership challenge.
Jermain Defoe could be another astute purchase for Portsmouth. Tottenham had already hinted he could be on his way after his contract was due to expire, but a move to Pompey will be ideal for him as he looks desperate to resurrect his international career and impress new boss Fabio Capello.
Another Pompey starlet, Lassana Diarra looks to be another great move this window. Wenger really didn't want to let him go; but as an ambitious young player Diarra is ready for regular football at Portsmouth and will be a huge success. As long as he gets enough playing time.
Chelsea's other signing Branislav Ivanovic is another one that really will reap the rewards. One of the best ball winners in Eastern Europe, Roman Abramovich has long been an admirer. The Â£9 million fee really does show just how highly he thinks of the defender. Ivanovic will be useful for Chelsea in the second half of the season.
Finally, James McFadden could be one of the best signings of the Premiership transfer window. He is a fantastic little player and we think he could be enough to keep Birmingham in the Premiership this season. Everton were mad to let him leave.
The Suspect Moves
Jonathan Woodgate is without doubt a class act on his day. But a series of injury problems could prevent his progress at new club Tottenham. Spurs have forked out a lot of money considering Woody's injury problems, but this cannot simply come a shade close to the ridiculous Â£10 million Tottenham forked out on Alan Hutton. The Scotsman does come with a pedigree in the Scottish Premiership, but he will have to make a big impression before we're convinced.
The Unknown Quantity
We're interested to see how new Man City signing Felipe Caicedo performs since moving for Â£4 million from Basel. Apparently, he has a great eye for goal and a rocket of a shot and this could be another astute signing by Sven-Goran.
Arsenal really should've made some moves in the market. They needed to add a little depth, but Wenger is a man who knows what he is doing.
Tottenham have been very active this window - but at a large cost and this will take some doing to prove it's effectiveness.
Liverpool really did well bringing in Martin Skrtel to put pressure on the soon to be outgoing Sami Hyypia, but is Skrtel the right man at such a hefty cost?
Newcastle boss Kevin Keegan promised he would be active in the market, but we didn't get too excited by the links or the results of his transfer window.
So how does this leave the rest of the Premiership season? Certainly interesting as many clubs have added depth. But, we think Chelsea have definitely come up trumps here already adding to a very useful squad. They added top class players at a big expense; but this could be just what they need as they look to poach the Premiership crown back from Manchester United.