The January transfer window is an extremely important period for a Premiership manager. Whether they are looking to find the missing piece of their jigsaw, covering squad injuries or just looking for someone who can offer them an extra option; the January window offers them one last chance to make changes for the remainder of the season.
Despite purchases generally costing a premium, each January there is a flurry of activity. This year a cool 60 million was spent, a modest amount in comparison to last years huge fees.
Here is our list of the best five Premiership buys from the January transfer window.
Thierry Henry (NY Red Bulls to Arsenal, short term loan)
When the 34 year old former captain rejoined the gunners opinion was divided. Arsenal had a terrible start to the season and looked to be still reeling from the departure of big name fan favourites Nasri and Fabregas. Wenger’s decision to bring back Henry seemed to be an act of desperation. There was no doubt that he could be a powerful voice in the dressing room but could he still perform on the pitch?
The answer was undeniably yes. In his short time on loan at the club the French genius scored three important goals. But more than that he seemed to bring belief back to the squad. Arsenal are back to their inimitable best and it was all kick started by the Arsenal legend. Another genius move in the transfer market by Wenger.
Papiss Cisse (Frieburg to Newcastle, £10m)
There is no doubting that a prolific goalscorer in the Premiership is worth his weight in gold. Newcastle already have the handy Demba Ba who has netted 16 goals this season so far. Now they also have Papiss Cisse. Cisse has scored 5 goals in 6 games for Alan Pardew’s men and if his skill and composure in front of goal earns Newcastle a highly coverted place in Europe next season then the 10 million price tag will seem like a steal indeed.
With Newcastle United seemingly having an abundance of inform strikers ahead of their next match against Liverpool it could lead to many fans to exclaim ‘who?’ in response to the name of Andy Carroll.
Paul Scholes (Manchester United, Returned from retirement)
Possibly not a January transfer in the strictest possible sense but who can put a value on the impact Paul Scholes has had on Manchester United’s push for the title this season.
When Fergie asked Scholes to come back from retirement even the most ardent United fan couldn’t have forseen the impact he would make. With his undoubted ability to hold the ball up, play the final ball; and his experience playing and winning at the highest possible level Scholes has been a sensation. He has even added a important goal here and there.
If United do go on to win the title it will be thanks in no small part to Scholes. With Scholes and Giggs holding back the years and Fergie himself seemly working well past the age of retirement it just begs the question: ‘Will anyone at Manchester United ever retire?’
Djibril Cisse (Lazio to QPR, £4m)
Ddjibril Cisse has not stopped hitting the headlines since his return to the Barclays Premier League. If you can suspend your disbelief over the two red cards he’s earned since joining Queens Park Rangers he has otherwise been a quality addition. But it’s difficult to see how Mark Hughes has anything other than uncontrollable rage towards a £4M striker who’s been repeatedly ineligible to play.
Bobby Zamora (Fulham to QPR, £6m)
As mentioned earlier a prolific striker can lead to a successful season in the Premier League. Mark Hughes managed to pick up two quality strikers with proven Premier League pedigree in January in the shape of Cisse and Zamora. Either of the strikers have the ability to score twenty plus goals in a season. With the two on board Hughes will be hoping the pair will develop a partnership which will ultimately lead to the goals and results which pull QPR clear of relegation.
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