With the IMF confirming the UK is still struggling to come out of a double dip recession (its okay this is not the Financial Times website you have accidentally logged into) there was a school of thought that the transfer market would hit the buffers.
Well it appears there has not been much restraint amongst the money men running football in the UK with agents mobiles ringing red hot right up until the transfer window ‘slammed shut’ – copyright Sky Sports News.
So two months into the season which players have proved to be most valuable for money? Here are my top ten signings of the summer.
10. David Templeton – Hearts to Rangers
Named after a Rangers legend David Cooper Templeton went from scoring against Liverpool at Anfield for Hearts in the Europa League to signing for the fallen Glasgow giants.
Two goals and a man of the match display on his debut was quickly followed by being crocked on the plastic pitch at Annan and the little winger has yet to kick a ball in anger since. That day cannot come quick enough for under fire Ally McCoist.
9. Gregory Tade – Inverness Caley Thistle to St Johnstone
It’s a long way from Senegal to Scotland but Gregory Tade has become an adopted Scot doing his best Michael Palin impression touring the country playing for five clubs before landing at St Johnstone.
Four appearances and three goals later Tade has become a firm favourite with the Perth clubs fans as his powerful no nonsense style has been a major factor in the Saints recent revival.
8. Gary Deegan – Coventry to Hibernian
Irishman Deegans arrival in Leith has been a real shot in the arm for the Hibs supporters who pre season were full of fear for the fortunes of their team.
The burly midfielder has played an integral part in the Edinburgh club surprise rise towards the top end of the SPL though an off field assault on him last weekend means he will be out of action for a few weeks.
7. Leigh Griffiths – Wolves to Hibernian
Spiky front-man Griffiths has talent, bags of it but throughout his career he has been followed by controversy on and off the park.
However this year it appears he has at last grown up and Hibs are the beneficiaries with Griffiths notching six goals including a vital equiliser against rivals Hearts.
6. Jan Vertonghen – Ajax to Tottenham
Not many Belgians have lit up English football but 6ft 2in Vertonghen is already on his way to be considered a top signing for Spurs.
Versatile across the backline his excellent goal in Tottenhams famous win at Old Trafford showed he can be a real danger at the other end of the park too.
5. Michu – Rayo Vallecano to Swansea
With managers like Roberto Martinez and Brendan Rogers the Swans have gained a reputation of being a club renowned for playing football the way purists like.
And now Michael Laudrup is in charge that philosophy is set to continue with Spanaird Michu proving to be a major player in the newly promoted sides first year in the Premier League.
Five goals already and his £2 million purchase looks like the bargain of the season.
4. Steven Fletcher – Wolves to Sunderland
At a cool £14 million Fletchers arrival to Wearside from the Midlands was the most expensive transfer for a Scottish player.
And already though that looks like money well spent on Martin O’Neils part as he has found the back of the net on five occasions for Sunderland in just five appearances.
3. Santi Cazorla – Malaga to Arsenal
It seems the fashion these days is for clubs to head for Spain and pick themselves up a play-maker with La Liga clubs unable to hold onto their stars as the country’s economy stumbles from day to day.
Manchester City landed Silva, Chelsea nabbed Mata and now Arsenal have followed suit with the acquisition of little magician Cazorla.
A goal and a man of the match display at Anfield had Gunners fans hailing the 27 year old forward with Arsene Wenger saying that he was “a pleasure to watch.”
2. Eden Hazard – Lille to Chelsea
So much was written and expected of the little Belgian the pressure was immediately on him as soon as he arrived in West London.
Well he certainly lived up to expectations on his debut creating Chelsea’s two goals at Wigan and it looks like the £32 million that left Roman Abramovich coffers for his signature will be seen as worthwhile.
1.Robin Van Persie – Arsenal to Manchester United
After seeing the title leave the Old Trafford trophy room and head across the city to the noisy neighbours United had to send out a message of intent and forking out £24 million for the signature of Dutch dangerman Van Persie was certainly that and then some.
Sir Alex doesn’t normally get it wrong in the transfer market and seven goals later Van Persie’s arrival at the Theatre of dreams has fans of the Red Devils confident that his partnership with Rooney will reap dividends and see the championship returning home.